Move over, Black Wednesday. By our estimation, Tuesday, November 4th is shaping up to be the biggest party night of the year. Even if you didn’t score a ticket to the official Obama rally in Grant Park, there are plenty of places to party with the politicos, no matter whom you vote for. Whether you end up celebrating a win or licking your wounds, you’ll want company. Get it, along with a multitude of drink specials, at these local bars—and keep reading for a quick Halloween heads-up.
Hard rock the vote at Hard Rock Hotel Chicago’s Base Bar, where drink specials include the Pit Bull in Lipstick (made with Van Gogh Vanilla Vodka, Red Bull, and Champagne; $12), the Maverick (Johnny Walker Red, blood-orange soda, and bitters; $10), and the Ciroc-Obama (made with Ciroc vodka; $12), among others. Entertainment is limited to the four flat-panel TVs—although there’s always the chance that random pols will roll in from the nearby rally.
Like Base Bar, Cat’s Meow (2700 W. Chicago Ave.; 773-489-6998) is an official party spot for the Rock the Vote campaign. Expect politically inspired open-mic and spoken-word performances, appearances by Ald. Billy Ocasio and Congressman Luis Gutierrez, and every TV in the house tuned to broadcasts of the results. Bonus: Buses will shuttle ticketholders to the Grant Park rally free with proof of voting. Drink specials include $2 PBRs ("Plain Broke Republicans"), $3 mini Bail-out Burgers, and $6 slices of apple pie a la mode dressed up with flags and sparklers.
Bring proof of voting to The Fifty/50, and you’ll score a free beer; convince the bartenders you voted for Bush in the last two presidential elections, and top off the brew with a Free Regret shot. Lots of giveaways and party games are in the works (including trivia on the last eight years); the bar’s 16 HDTVs will be tuned to election coverage; and the spot will stay open until a winner is declared.
At Lakeview Broadcasting Company, the offer is plain and simple: no contests, no quizzes, just half-off all food and drinks, all night, with your voter receipt, plus drink specials including $4 Obama O-Bombs and $2 Yes We Cans (a.k.a. cans of beer).
Powerhouse, where Obama held a celeb-studded fundraiser in September, offers specials including a $5 McCain Mango Mojito and Obama’s ChiTown Cocktail (Maker’s Mark, cherry brandy, and brandied cherries). There’s no cover from 11:30 a.m. until 1 a.m., and the spot’s two 42-inch plasmas will be tuned to election coverage.
Although the flatscreen TVs at the newly opened Sully’s House (1501 N. Dayton St.; 312-929-2779) will likewise be tuned to results broadcasts, a 100-inch HD projector will show highlights and bloopers from the presidential campaigns. Bonus: drink specials and a candidate quiz with a $50 gift certificate as prize.
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Nightspotting 2.0 observed Halloween early by trekking to the Playboy Mansion in L.A. last weekend for Hef’s annual party, but there are plenty of local places to get your thrills and chills. Tonight, Thursday the 30th, Plan B hosts a citywide bar crawl with stops in Chinatown and Lincoln Park. The $40 fee includes bus transportation, and a cocktail reception and afterparty. Call 773-252-2680 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org to get on the list. Other options include the devil’s own Halloween bash, plus live animals and dancers working a costumed crowd in River North.