Plastic is out

Delta Air Lines is eliminating plastic straws and several other single-use plastics from its flights and airport clubs. Plastic straws and stir sticks will be replaced by ones made of bamboo and birchwood. Delta will also replace the disposable plates, utensils, bowls and buffet dishware used in its airport Sky Clubs with compostable, biodegradable or reusable alternatives. It will remove the outer plastic wrappers on its first-class amenity kits. The move follows Delta’s announcement in April that it would no longer put plastic wrap around utensils offered to coach passengers on international flights. Instead, customers receive their knife-spoon-fork combination in a rolled napkin. The airline still uses plastic wrap on its domestic flights, which serve fewer meals requiring utensils.

Kristen Leigh Painter

Science time in Chicago

Encouraging curiosity and celebrating questions, Chicago’s Museum of Science and Industry is the place to see a German submarine, understand how tornadoes and avalanches happen and discover the process behind Pixar’s popular films and characters. Explore the mathematical patterns that surround us every day in the natural world — from the delicate nested spirals of a sunflower’s seeds to the ridges of a majestic mountain range — in a compelling exhibit called “Numbers in Nature.” Then make your way to the Whispering Gallery to understand how sound travels in different environments. A theater and hands-on exhibits further enhance the experience (

A stroll in Prospect Park

Prospect Park in Brooklyn rivals Central Park in terms of pastoral beauty. The 526-acre park has many of the same attractions as its Manhattan counterpart, including its own zoo, vintage carousel, running loop and skating rink. The Long Meadow, which stretches almost a mile, is one of the longest unbroken green spaces in any city park in the country. There is room to spread a picnic blanket or toss a Frisbee here, even on weekends. The surrounding neighborhood of Park Slope has the Upper West and Upper East sides beat when it comes to great food. After a day in the park, you’ll have countless of-the-moment restaurants, such as Fausto and Olmsted, to choose from for dinner. And, at bars such as craft-beer shrine Double Windsor, you’ll be rubbing shoulders with locals rather than tourists (

Washington Post

Delta aims for Shanghai

Delta Air Lines wants to fly nonstop from the Twin Cities to Shanghai and is seeking government approval to do so. The airline submitted a request to the U.S. Department of Transportation to begin daily nonstop service from Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport in June 2020. If approved, it would be the first nonstop route between Minnesota and mainland China, fulfilling Delta’s long-stated commitment to provide Minneapolis-St. Paul with a direct connection there. “Any [new air service] between the U.S. and China is a multistep process,” said Morgan Durrant, spokesman for Delta. “If we are successful, which we are highly confident we will be, we will get the route on the schedule and start selling tickets.”

Kristen Leigh Painter