By Selena Fragassi
On Monday night’s game against the Dallas Cowboys, the Chicago Bears will retire former coach and tight end Mike Ditka’s #89 jersey at halftime. Want to be there? Double Door is hosting a unique competition that will award the winner with two tickets. All you have to look like Da Coach and show up like you own the place.
Presented by DaBearsBlog and Art of Men, the look-a-like contest (and children’s toy drive) benefits the Otis Wilson Charitable Association, which provides a fitness and health-based program for at-risk youth. Judges include the 1985 Super Bowl champ Otis Wilson himself, along with other noted players like James “Big Cat” Williams.
If it’s been awhile since you’ve seen Ditka (other than touting flu shots on those bus ads), we have you covered. We quizzed Chicago Costume’s owner Courtland Hickey on how to expertly craft your costume for the win.
1. For fans who want the full monty, Chicago Costume offers a “fan-inspired” Ditka costume through its rental department (quantities are limited). For $50, you’ll get the iconic sweater vest and blazer, as seen in the photo. Glasses are sold separately.
2. If you want to go á la carte, Hickey says, first and foremost, “the ‘stache is key.” He recommends the store’s M2 brown mustache (“the best one we have”), which requires double-sided tape to adhere. For Ditka on a budget, this self-adhesive Pancho Villa black ‘stache will work, too.
3. Ditka has a great head of hair – to replicate it, go for a receding hairline wig. “Once styled, it gives the iconic ’85 coach look,” says Hickey. Chicago Costume’s wig comes in brown and grey, that is if you are going for an older Ditka. As well, the store sells grey hairspray in can or liquid form.
4. You’ll also need a good pair of Aviator sunglasses like these ‘80s-inspired BluBlockers.
Complete your costume with your favorite Bears sweater or jersey, an over-sized “Superbowl” costume ring, some old Reeboks (all can be found if you dig deep enough in the bins at your local Unique Thrift or Salvation Army) and a cigar in your hand.
Don’t forget you have to act the part, too. Here are some of the best tutorials on the web for perfecting your biting jabs and that glorious Chicago accent. Check out the Mike Ditka soundbyte collection, his interview on the Johnny Carson show in 1986 and a more recent Under Armour commercial.
MIKE DITKA LOOK-A-LIKE CONTEST
When: 7 p.m. Dec. 8
Where: Double Door, 1572 N. Milwaukee Ave.
Tickets: $10 (in advance), 21+
Info: (773) 489-3160; ticketfly.com