Chicago (CBS) — According to the Washington Post, almost 30,000 federal workers, live in the Chicago region. Below is a list of business and organizations offering free and discounted items and services to those impacted by the current government shutdown. From free meals to comedy show tickets, furloughed employees can show their valid federal ID and take advantage of the following:


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Smack Dab Chicago (6730 N. Clark St., Chicago) is offering free meals to employees affected by the shutdown and their children. During the week, employees can show their government ID and receive breakfast or lunch. On the weekends, the offer can be used on dinner. Meals include an entree, pastry and beverage. Vegan and vegetarian options are available.

Cellar Door Provisions (3025 W. Diversey Ave., Chicago) is offering breakfast or lunch to anyone with government ID “while supplies last”.

Doc’s Smokehouse (19081 Old Lagrange Road #1051420, Mokena; 1420 Calumet Ave., Dyer, IN; 754 Vel R. Phillips Ave., Milwaukee, WI) will give a free pulled pork sandwich, chips and a non-alcoholic drink to any government employee with a valid ID at all three of their locations.

Manzo’s Burger (2353 W. 111th St., Chicago) is giving 50 percent off the entire bill of anyone who shows their valid federal ID.

Horse Thief Hollow Craft Brewery (10426 S. Western Ave., Chicago) is giving free lunch up to $15 (alcohol is not included) from 2 to 4 p.m. until Friday, Jan. 18 to government employees with a valid ID.

Porkchop BBQ (1017 S. Delano Court, Chicago; 1516 E. Harper Court) will take 50 percent off the entire bill of government workers who show a valid ID and their families.

Cà Phê Đá (1800 ½ S. Carpenter St., Chicago) is serving a free Vietnamese “Worker’s Meal” with protein, vegetables and rice to single diners who show a valid government ID from 10 a.m. to close.

Protein Bar (11 Chicago locations; 896 N. Meacham Road, Schaumburg; 2040 York Road, Oak Brook) is giving 50 percent off an entree to anyone with a valid government ID Tuesday through Sunday.

Food Banks

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Care for Real (5339 N. Sheridan Road, Chicago) is offering staple food items like meat, dairy and canned fruits and vegetables to furloughed employees who show their federal ID. They may pick up the staples once a month and fresh produce and bakery items up to four times a week. Food is distributed Monday, Wednesday and Friday from 9 a.m. to noon and Saturday from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Lakeview Pantry (3945 N. Sheridan Road, Chicago) will give two weeks’ worth of groceries for free to government employees who show a valid ID during the shutdown. Food distribution is from noon to 7 p.m. on Monday, Wednesday and Friday and on Thursday from 4 to 7 p.m.


The Anti-Cruelty Society (510 N. LaSalle St., Chicago) will give pet supplies to employees furloughed by the government shutdown. Pick-up hours are between noon and 7 p.m. Monday through Friday and noon and 5 p.m. Saturday and Sunday.


The Adler Planetarium (1300 S. Lake Shore Drive, Chicago) is giving two free general admission passes to government employees. They can upgrade to an All Access Pass, which includes access to sky shows, for a discounted price of $17.95 for adults and $16.95 for children.

The Auditorium Theatre (50 Ida B. Wells Drive, Chicago) at Roosevelt University is offering four tickets to “Too Hot to Handel: The Jazz-Gospel Messiah” Jan. 19 at 7:30 p.m. and Jan. 20 at 3 p.m. and “National Geographic Live — Pink Boots and a Machete” on Jan. 24 at 7 p.m. to government employees with a valid ID.

Kings Dining & Entertainment (1500 N. Clybourn Ave. Suite C102, Chicago; 5505 Park Place, Rosemont) is giving two free games and shoes Monday through Thursday from open to 6 p.m. to employees who show a valid ID. Government employees must mention the promotion, which cannot be combined with other offers or on holidays and is “first come, first serve.”

The Second City (1616 N. Wells St., Chicago) is offering federal employees with valid ID free tickets to a select number of their shows. They are also offering a free meal (up to a $15 value) and a non-alcoholic beverage to furloughed employees at their full-service restaurant and bar, 1959 Kitchen & Bar. Finally, furloughed employees can participate in a free improvisation drop-in class on Fridays at 5:30 p.m. or Sundays at 7 p.m. Pre-registration is required. More information is available here.


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Airbnb’s new program, “A Night on Us“, will give up to $110 extra to any federal worker who hosts an Airbnb Experience or has guests for three nights in their home between Dec. 18, 2018 and March 18. The application for “A Night on Us” is here.