News about 53rd St. in Hyde Park, Chicago

The Red Balloon

Holiday party at Anastasia Thursday night; other holiday offers on 53rd Street

Pop-up clothing boutique Anastasia, at 1500 E. 53rd Street, will host a free holiday party for customers on Thursday, December 11, from 5-9 p.m. Owner and designer Anastasia Chatzka has organized a festive night for customers to celebrate the holidays and personally meet the designers whose pieces are sold in the store in addition to her own clothing line. The store will offer refreshments, discounts of 20-50% on selected items, and a chance to win a pair of handmade mittens.

A variety of other retailers on the street are also offering special holiday deals through the end of December:

  • The Red Balloon - The children’s store located at 1504 53rd Street is offering cozy holiday story times every Tuesday morning at 10:30 a.m. Owner Jennifer Pope has planned complimentary fun activities for children, including making gingerbread houses and decorating "Love You" letters.
  • Meadowlark - Located at 1457 E. 53rd Street, the store carries an artfully curated collection of vintage clothing. Through the holidays, owner Kelly Asaf is offering a 15% discount on all clothing purchases. The store is now carrying Pound jewelry, hand-made with crystals and stones, and through January 1st, shoppers will receive a $10 discount on their Pound jewelry purchase.
  • Kilwins - Santa will make special appearances at Kilwins two weekends – this Saturday and Sunday, December 13 and 14, and next Saturday and Sunday, December 20 and 21 from 3-6 p.m. both weeks.  Kilwins is located at 5226 S. Harper Avenue, and owner Jackie Jackson is also offering free hot chocolate, fudge samples, and coloring books while supplies last. Shoppers purchasing one pound of fudge will receive one half pound free of charge.

The Red Balloon offers free ice cream today in Hyde Park, launches Story Time

By Rachel Wasielewski

The Red Balloon children’s clothing boutique in Hyde Park will offer free ice cream today to anyone who stops into their new store on 53rd Street from noon to 3 p.m.

An ice cream truck will be parked outside the Red Balloon, and the only requirement is to go into the store to get a ticket.

The Hyde Park Ice Cream Social is the second community-centered event the new store has launched this week. On September 2, Red Balloon began Story Time, where parents are invited to bring in young children for a free story reading.  The store will host two sessions of Story Time every Tuesday, from 10:30 a.m. to 11:15 a.m. for 18-month olds to 3-year olds and from 3:30 p.m. to 4:15 p.m. for ages 4 and older.  

The Red Balloon is located at 1504 E. 53rd Street.

Red Balloon pop-up opening on 53rd Street August 1

By Rachel Wasielewski

Children’s apparel retailer The Red Balloon is popping up in Hyde Park just in time for back-to-school shopping.

The Chicago-based boutique is set to open a 1,400-square-foot pop-up shop at 1504 E. 53rd Street in Hyde Park on Friday, August 1. The Red Balloon, named after the acclaimed 1956 French movie, operates two other locations in the Bucktown and Andersonville neighborhoods, selling high-quality clothes, toys, gifts and books for children up to age 16.  The 53rd Street location will target youth between one month and 12 to 14 years old, and will focus more on gift items, with a wide selection of infant and Chicago-themed items along with the store’s signature initial t-shirts.

Owner Jennifer Pope said she was drawn to Hyde Park by the family atmosphere and “great restaurants and shops” available in the neighborhood. She is excited about the potential to extend the six-month pop-up to a longer-term presence in the 53rd Street area.

“The vibrant, family-friendly feel of the Hyde Park community is an ideal fit for the Red Balloon,” Pope said. “I am thrilled with the idea of being part of the community and having the opportunity to meet new kids, hold new babies and toddlers and listen to their silly stories.”

At its two other locations, the Red Balloon is a favorite among parents and children for its merchandise, comfortable and friendly environment and special events such as Storytime. The store is also well-known for its novel gifts, free gift wrapping and handwritten gift cards. All of those features will also be available at the Hyde Park location.

At the grand opening event this Friday, the boutique will offer free treats such as cookies and balloons and will give away free sunglasses with any purchase. The store will be open daily from 10 a.m. until 6 p.m.