Chicago Beer Growler Guide: Where to Get Your Fill

Chicago Growler Fill Map Guide

When times call for quality over quantity, Bud Light just doesn’t quite cut it.

As craft beer explodes across the country’s bar scene, it can be pretty pricey to support our local breweries.  A pint of Indianapolis craft draft beer usually costs around $5. Maybe $3.50 on a good night. And while buying them in cans or a six-pack can be cheaper, it still comes out to about $2.00 per pint.

While this doesn’t seem like much, we all know how a few beers at the bar can add up. Luckily most breweries offer the option to fill a giant 64 ounce jug with their beer for a pretty low price aka a growler fill. In Indy, a Sun King growler fill can get as low as $1.25 per pint. PLUS you can fill them on Sundays. That Indiana law may change til next football season, but a growler could be your next hero on that empty-fridge summer Sunday cookout.

I decided to give my brother a growler from Sun King (a Indiana brewery with Wabash ties) that he could fill in Chicago. To make the barrier to entry even lower, I made him a guide with location, hours, pricing, and specials. It took awhile to dig up the info, which is why I want to share it with the world. So if you’re someone in Chicago that’s ever wondered, “Where can I get a growler filled in Chicago?” look no further. You’ve found the treasure map you’re looking for.

Click the image below and print it from your browser if you like.

Chicago Beer Growler Fill Guide Map

Any of the locations above will fill any growler you bring in as long as it has the surgeon’s general warning on the back (except Rock Bottom – you may have to do a little negotiating).

Stay tuned for the Indianapolis version. That one will probably be more extensive, and hopefully with the lowered cost of living!


Shadow Curtains: Drapery with a Secret

Shadow Curtains: Things May Not Always Be What They Seem

Shadow Curtains: Things May Not Always Be What They Seem

We were sitting at a cousin’s basketball game waiting for my chatty (ahem… public-relations-building, Catholic Schools marketing coordinating mother) to make her rounds when I asked my dad how to solve my room’s missing wall dilemma. My dad was/is a builder, and I knew he would enjoy sharing his knowledge on the subject. Initially, he suggested constructing a two-by-four framed drywall barrier. A father son project. Unfortunately, drywall is expensive, and kind of a cop-out.There had to be more opportunity lying in this shifty excuse for a third bedroom’s need for a little privacy.

But I tried to stick with the wood because 2×4’s were cheap, stable, and perhaps quickest way to solve the problem. It led to a framed wall atop cinder blocks, harnessed by hooks & cables with something translucent… maybe canvas, maybe industrial plastic wrap. After working in construction for family since I was 14, seeing raw materials in an unfinished state seemed like home and would go nicely with the wall’s adjacent exposed brick wall. Often, a passerby sees a building or a home for the sum of its parts, but I wanted the wall to emphasize its parts and make viewers see a home in a skeletal way.

temporary wall concepting

Based on the topic of this post, the former plan is another idea for another time. Lacking power tools and finances, I needed something cheaper and quicker. A coworker of mine suggested a canvas drop cloth, and as fate would have it, I found one. In fact, the whole project cost me twenty bucks:

  •  $8 for the (gently used) painter’s drop cloth
  • $7 for a porch lamp system’s chain
  • $1 for a paint sample
  • $4 for hooks and a paint sponge

Perhaps the translucent shadow concept came from a curtained Jason Aldean concert entrance I saw last summer, but after living around my curtain wall for a week or two I noticed shadows from my room’s dresser. I had my translucent shadow idea, and I felt the Indianapolis skyline would resonate well with anybody visiting our Indy apartment.


shadow drapes inside view

One can hardly see the paint from the inside, but a viewer can see the skyline from either side because the paint blocks light coming from any direction.  If a visitor enters through our backdoor, they’ll see this view first and may not notice the skyline until they turn around upon passing through.


shadow curtain outside distance shot

The skyline as a slightly impressionistic feel with its rounded edges and its patchy painting. If you notice, the start of a shadow on the farthest left is actually from my dresser and may even seem like another building. Something to think about.


This could work well for anything viewed from multiple directions. Perhaps you want outside viewers to see one thing but see the same elements composing something entirely different on the other. Maybe a sports company uses it with the tagline “it’s what’s beneath that counts” or Gatorade asks if it’s in you. Maybe curtains in front of gym windows so patrons get their privacy while onlookers are curious of the interior shadows’ activities (and perhaps stop in for… a membership!). Maybe it’s a wall running north to south whose message is viewed from the West in the morning and from the East in the evening based on the sun’s exposure, or in a restaurant where the objects creating the shadows have totally different meaning on the inside than the do from the outside…

What’s Next

City Skyline Curtains by Rob Gonsalves


Besides a raw construction materials project, I would do this if I had big enough windows. I’ll leave it to you to take this where you will.

Entire Skyline Shadow Curtain Graphic

Design Ideas for the Border to My Dry Erase Board Wall

So I had an idea for our apartment – a dry erase board wall. We’ve got stick-able dry erase surfaces in our office walls, and it’s a really unique experience to write on directly on the walls. The only problem is when you erase things, the bordering wall gets dirty. Hence, I need ideas for a border.

dry erase paint wall idea suggestions
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Since we all know the best finished products come through collaboration, I’m looking to collaborate with your suggestions. I’m using only gray paint for a very neutral feel that won’t overpower my space. Leave your suggestions in the comments below and if I pick yours, you’ll recognize it in the next picture I post.

Can’t wait to see what you come up with.