The early results suggest that Mayor Daley was a better friend to both runners and bikers than his esteemed successor. This is the first year I can remember that the water fountains in the park were not on by the Shamrock Shuffle 8K, the unofficial start of the training season for the Chicago marathon. Its now long past St Patty's day, Easter, and the Shuffle and the only fountain I have seen that works is next to a turf soccer field that is used nearly 24/7 by various amateur and semi-pro leagues. I assume Chicago's conversion to "dry" status is based on our desperate financial condition to save on water bills, which if true, I would suggest fixing the water fountain by the soccer fields so it doesn't run all the time.
Another suggestion is to stop moving the distance markers in the park. There is no cosmically right answer as long as the markers are the correct distance apart from each other. It is idiotic to keep adjusting the start and finish of an 18 mile path and then slightly moving (and sometimes removing) the 34 half mile markers in between. You think this was "shovel ready" project for federal stimulus money? If not, a silly waste of money better spent on quenching the thirst of the thousands of lakefront athletes, most of whom already know where they are and how far they have gone.