Holy Cow! Harry Caray's Chicago Sports Museum

A local legend. A classic restaurant. A 23,000-square foot shrine to sports. It's the recipe for Harry Caray's 7th Inning Stretch and the Chicago Sports Museum, just opened at Water Tower Place.

A local legend. A sprawling restaurant. A 22,000-square-foot shrine to sports. It’s the recipe for Harry Caray’s 7th Inning Stretch and the Chicago Sports Museum (www.harrycarays.com), which just opened at Water Tower Place. Here are five surprises awaiting sports fans:

It’s interactive. Size up your strength, endurance and agility against some of Chicago’s giants in the game—and we aren’t just talking baseball. In one challenge, you’ll be able to compare your vertical leap with Michael Jordan’s. The Great One could soar as high as 48 inches. Another feature measures your reaction time against Chicago Blackhawks goalie Tony Esposito.

It’s scientific. Is seeing believing? In regards to sports, that’s not always the case. Working with the FBI, radiologists, chemists and more, Harry Caray’s unravels the forensics behind many local sports mysteries. Museum visitors will be able to see inside Sammy Sosa’s corked bat and learn how baseballs have evolved over time. And what exactly happened to the puck that bagged the winning goal during the 2010 Stanley Cup Playoffs? Find out here.

It’s practice for a broadcasting career. Call a game just like beloved Cubs announcer Harry Caray, get the crowd going with your own animated version of “Take Me Out to the Ballgame” and put on your own Caray impersonation.

It’s superstitious. The museum addresses the “cursed” Cubs and other Chicago sports teams and calls on famous local athletes to share their own rituals and superstitions.

It’s free for restaurant guests. Eat at Harry Caray’s 7th Inning Stretch—think oven-fired pizzas, burgers and hand-dipped milkshakes—and get into the museum for free. General admission is $6, $3 for seniors and children 3-11 and free for kids under 2.

Harry Caray's 7th Inning Stretch
©Jason Kaumeyer