Open today 9:30 am - 4:30 pm

The Museum Celebrates the Repeal of Prohibition


The Chicago History Museum celebrates the  85th anniversary of the repeal of Prohibition with 1930s inspired music, dancing, cocktails, history and more at The Last Speakeasy: On the Eve of Repeal on Thursday, December 6 from 7 to 11 p.m.

Lead sponsor Old Forester, the only bourbon continuously sold before, during and after Prohibition will be mixing up creative cocktails, offering a tasting of their range of products and hosting a bartending competition. Jackie Zykan, master taster at Old Forester, will judge the Old Forester Old Fashioned Competition at the event, where 10 finalist bartenders will make and share samples of their Old Forester Old Fashioneds with guests.

Lake Side Pride Jazz Orchestra will perform 1930s classics while professional dancers teach popular dances from the era. The event will include additional music performances from The Michael Walters Band and DJ Lunatik.

Museum historians and staff will guide guests through the history of the era. Charles Bethea, director of curatorial affairs, and Jessica Pushor, costume collection manager, will present a behind-the-scenes look at 1930s fashion from the Museum’s historic costume collection while John Russick, vice president of interpretation and education, guides guests through the Museum’s newest digital experience “Chicago 00: 1933/34 Century of Progress.”

The evening’s activities include close-up parlor magic throughout the Museum’s exhibitions and spaces, courtesy of Chicago Magic Lounge; novelty gambling tables with 1930s gaming demonstrations; a tour of a one-of-a-kind whiskey barrel bus, courtesy of The Barrel Run, and more.

Guests are encouraged to wear their finest speakeasy-inspired threads. The Costume Council of the Chicago History Museum will present awards and prizes to the night’s best-dressed dandies and dolls.

Tickets are $75 general and $65 for Museum members. Premium package tickets that include open-bar are $95 general and $85 for Museum members. The event is 21 and older. Guests are asked to leave feathers, boas and firearms (including) toys at home.

The Last Speakeasy is made possible by major support from lead sponsor Old Forester, with additional support from sponsors Chicago Magic Lounge and Eli’s Cheesecake.


The Chicago History Museum is situated on ancestral homelands of the Potawatomi people, who cared for the land until forced out by non-Native settlers. Established in 1856, the Museum is now at 1601 N. Clark Street in Lincoln Park, its third location. As a major museum and research center for Chicago and U.S. history, the Chicago History Museum strives to be a destination for learning, inspiration and civic engagement. Through dynamic exhibitions, tours, publications, special events and programming, the Museum connects people to Chicago’s history and to each other. To share Chicago stories, the Museum collects and preserves millions of artifacts, documents, images and other items that are relevant to the city’s history. The Museum gratefully acknowledges the support of the Chicago Park District on behalf of the people of Chicago. 

Chicago History Museum Sharing Chicago Stories