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The Campaign for a Bradley Renaissance


Segways take to the Chicago Lakefront

By Michelle Riggio
Program Director, Continuing Education

VIDEO: OLLI members learn how to ride Segways before using them to tour Chicago.

A dozen members of the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute at Bradley University (OLLI) toured the Chicago lakefront on July 29. Unlike past trips, however, the over-50 students didn't bike. They didn't hike, either. Instead, they glided along the lakefront and museum campus on Segways, the world's first self-balancing, electric-powered transportation machines.

The OLLI group donned helmets and safety vests, then had a training session in a small park adjacent to Michigan Avenue. After a few minutes of practice, they took a private, two-hour tour of the lakefront, visiting Millennium Park, Daley Bicentennial Plaza, Field Museum, Shedd Aquarium and Adler Planetarium, Buckingham Fountain, and the Rose Gardens of Grant Park.

The tour docents shared fascinating stories about the Windy City during the trip, delighting the group with tales about the Great Chicago Fire, President Obama's stirring election night acceptance speech in Grant Park, and more.

"Everything about the trip was educational, from learning about the history of the city to learning how to handle the Segway," said OLLI member (and recent BU retiree) Dr. Fred Fry.

The Segway experience is just another example of how OLLI members are on the go!

The Bradley University Osher Lifelong Learning Institute is a group of more than 700 members, age 50 and over, who learn together through three distinct programs: OLLI classes, OLLI learning trips, and OLLI study groups. To learn more, visit