The State Series (Illinois and Florida)

Florida Illinois

Well, it was fun while it lasted, but we’re winding down now. Only got this one and one more after it, might as well enjoy ‘em while they last! Today we’ll be covering Illinois, home of the windy city, and Florida, home of enough alligators that every minute you spend wandering off the roads should leave you deeply concerned. Let’s get to it!


  • The first Aquarium opened in Chicago in 1893
  • Des Plaines claims the very first McDonalds
  • The Chicago Water Tower and Pumping Station are the only buildings to survive the Great Chicago Fire
  • Rounded silos were first built in Spring Grove
  • The Chicago Public Library is the world’s largest public library, housing over two million books
  • The Dairy Queen franchise was first opened in Joliet in 1940
  • Luck of the Irish: The Chicago River is dyed green on St. Patrick’s Day
  • Warning to people that only carry cards: You can be arrested for vagrancy if you don’t have at least one dollar in your wallet, according to state law.
  • Sundae’s were invented in Evanston as a way to work around a law prohibiting the sale of soda fountains on Sunday
  • But where’s Gotham?: Metropolis, the home of Superman, is an actual city in southern Illinois


  • Cape Canaveral is America’s launch pad for space flights
  • Gatorade was named for the University of Florida’s Gators, for whom the drink was first developed
  • Saint Augustine is the oldest European settlement in North America
  • Clearwater is the US city with the highest rate of lightning strikes
  • Fort Lauderdale is known as America’s Venice because of the 185 miles of local waterways
  • Orlando has more visitors than any other amusement park location in the United States
  • John Gorrie of Apalachicola created mechanical refrigeration in 1851
  • The longest urban trail in the eastern United States belongs to the Pinellas trail, stretching over forty-seven miles long and connecting St. Petersburg with Pinellas county
  • It’s illegal to shower naked, according to Florida law
  • Key Largo is known as the Dive Capital of the World