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Navy Pier opened to the public on July 15, 1916. It's 3300 feet long and was originally named 'Municipal Pier'. It was built to be a dock for freights, passenger traffic and a space for indoor and outdoor recreation for the public. Many events were held at the pier, such as expositions, pageants and other types of entertainment. In the summer of 1918 the pier was also used as a jail for draft dodgers. In 1927 the pier was renamed Navy Pier to honor the naval veterans who served in the First World War. In 1941 during World War II the pier became a training center for the Navy. About 10,000 people worked, trained and lived there. The pier contained a 2,500-seat theater, gym, 12-chair barber shop, tailor, cobbler shops, soda fountain and a vast kitchen and hospital.

Today it is one of the Midwest's most visited attractions with more than fifty acres of parks, gardens, shops and restaurants, drawing nearly nine million visitors annually.

AND THIS WEEKEND! The inaugural CHICAGO ART AND DESIGN SHOW opens to the public Saturday and Sunday 10-5 in the Expo Center at the Great Pier. Great ART, activities and presentation of the STEVEN AMDUR LIFETIME ACHIEVEMENT IN THE ARTS AWARD to Hall of Fame PHOTOGRAPHER VAL MAZZENGA. This very special presentation will take place Saturday at 1pm in Val's exhibit. He will be on hand to take questions and tell stories.

Oh yes, I will also be exhibiting, for the first time ever Val (my husband and best friend) and I will have side by side booths... Making memories at the Great Navy Pier.


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