The Run Down

We’ve got a full night of paranormal haunts and magic. It starts at a classic English pub in the heart of Lakeview, where the ghost of a young woman is sometimes said to have trapped people inside. After munching on haunted fish and chips and throwing back a few pints, you'll head to a close-up magic show in a small storefront theater. Here are the details.

1. Pints @ Red Lion Pub

2. Magic Show @ Trickery

1. Red Lion Pub

When it comes to English pubs in Chicago, two types come to mind. On the one hand, you have the kinds of places you’d find soccer hooligans hanging out to watch early morning matches.

The other type takes after the classic English “country pub.” These pubs are meant to be a central community spot, like a town hall where people can share ideas and have meaningful conversations over a drink. Red Lion fits this mold.

As you walk in, you’ll first notice the dark oak panels along the walls that help set the mood. You won’t find any TVs distracting from our attention, but you will find a private collection of WWI books, maps, and pictures on display.

For a quieter setting, you can head upstairs and hang out in a small balcony seating area that overlooks the bar below. It’s up here where long-time patrons and workers say they’ve experienced ghostly apparitions.

Apparently, it’s the site where a young woman died decades ago, and in the bathroom on this floor, it’s been said that you can sometimes hear her ghost crying inside. There also have been instances where people have found themselves trapped in the bathroom and unable to pry the door open until the spirit stopped crying. Cool.

Let’s get back on track and talk about food. Like any good pub, this place also has a good selection of pub fare. Pictured above are the corned beef sandwich and the shepherd’s pie. The shepherd’s pie hits the spot when you’re looking for something warm and hearty. It’s ground lamb, beef, peas, carrots, and cheddar, all mixed together in a rosemary herb mash.

2. Trickery

While located in a small storefront off Halstead Ave., this one-person magic show is big in every way. We’re about a 15 min walk to The Trickery, an up-close magic show in a 30-seat theater. Here are a few notes to help you plan your visit.

– Shows are Thursday – Sunday. See their website for show times.
– Tickets are $32
– Shows are about 1 hour long
– It’s BYOB

Here’s a view of The Trickery from across the street on Halstead Ave.

This is the lounge where you can hang out before or after the show. You can also find a small gift shop with random magic items.


This is Aaron Rabkin, the magician behind this one-person show. Here’s a little fun fact about Aaron. He started his magic career at 14 when he began performing at the famed Magic Castle in L.A.  That eventually led to busking around Santa Monica and later in New York. He eventually moved to Chicago and started this show in 2017.

This is a small venue with a lot of audience participation. You can expect to be part of the show no matter where you sit.  I won’t give away too much, but you should expect some mind-reading, some sleight of hand, and maybe a miracle or two.