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The Crystal Gardens is pictured at Navy Pier in Chicago. (Peter Griffin / Alamy)

For more than two decades, the indoor garden has been a cherished escape from bustling city life. But the beloved tropical garden, which has always been free to the public, is set to be replaced with a new paid digital experience.

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A baby gull. (Elien Said / Pixabay)

Bird monitors said the gull colony is probably stressed in some way, either from lack of food, not enough room on the roof or extreme heat.

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(WTTW News)

Starting Thursday, Navy Pier’s indoor spaces will be open to the public as it moves into its second phase of reopening. The iconic lakefront attraction aims to fully reopen by the end of the month.

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Navy Pier (WTTW News)

Chicago is loosening its pandemic restrictions. As part of our community reporting series, we spend the day reporting in and around Navy Pier as it begins a phased reopening.

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(WTTW News)

One of the state’s top tourist attractions will soon begin reopening its doors after closing for eight months due to the coronavirus pandemic.

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After weeks of being closed, Navy Pier prepares on Tuesday, June 9, 2020 for its partial reopening. (WTTW News)

Unlike the pier’s shutdown for several months in the spring due to government orders driven by the coronavirus pandemic, directors of Navy Pier are this time choosing to close the cultural attraction for economic reasons.

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Navy Pier summer fireworks in 2011. (Michael Mayer / Flickr)

The annual display gives way to some virtual celebrations in 2020. Not that the holiday will be short of illegal booms, crackles and pops, if recent weeks are any indication. 

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After weeks of being closed, Navy Pier prepares on Tuesday, June 9, 2020 for its partial reopening. (WTTW News)

One of the state’s top tourist attractions has been closed to visitors throughout the coronavirus pandemic. That changes Wednesday, even as other popular Chicago destinations remain closed — including the lakefront.

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“Chicago Bulls Remix” (Angel Idowu / WTTW News)

Art installations with a Chicago sporty twist are on display throughout the Navy Pier exhibition as part of the NBA All-Star weekend.

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In this Thursday, July 4, 2019 photo, A Chicago Police Department officer guards people as they stream out of Chicago’s Navy Pier after reports of stabbings and threatening injuries after the 4th of July celebrations. (AP Photo / Amr Alfiky)

Police said a false report of gunfire set off a stampede that trampled more than a dozen people at Chicago’s annual July 4 fireworks display Thursday at Navy Pier, where thousands of revelers had crowded the Lake Michigan shore.

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Summer Fitness Supported by LifeStart (Credit: James Richards IV Photography)

Ditch the gym and take your fitness routine outside this summer with free classes at Millennium Park, Navy Pier and Gallagher Way. With morning and evening classes, there are plenty of opportunities to get in shape.

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A new art installation at Navy Pier uses a solar-powered highway message board to warn of the dangers of climate change. (Alex Ruppenthal / Chicago Tonight)

Pull over to the side of the road and consider the world-ending event taking place before your eyes. That’s essentially the message conveyed by the newest piece of public art on display at Navy Pier.

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A docent for Seadog Cruises is pushing to unionize, but he says Seadog’s parent company, Entertainment Cruises, is trying to quash the effort.

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(Courtesy of Navy Pier)

Marilynn Gardner took the reins of Navy Pier in 2011 and has overseen its $300 million transformation as the pier’s president and CEO. She joins us in discussion.

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Chicagoans have watched the Navy Pier Flyover begin to take shape over the last three years. But the city recently pushed back the completion date to 2019. Frustrated cyclists and pedestrians are beginning to ask why.

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Contemporary artwork is in the spotlight. We get a behind-the-scenes preview of Expo Chicago, the citywide art show at Navy Pier and other city destinations.