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Chicago's Lincoln Park Living

From lake front beaches and gardens to historic churches, this upscale neighborhood is nestled in right near downtown Chicago. Stroll in the peaceful parks and tree-lined residential areas or head toward the bustling business corridors for great food and shopping. Armitage Avenue is lined with independent boutiques and high-end retailers; Clark Street is packed with casual cafes, ethnic restaurants and sweet shops that spill out onto the sidewalks during warm weather; and Lincoln Avenue buzzes all night with bars and taverns that cater to the young college crowd from the nearby DePaul University campus. Besides shopping and dining, Lincoln Park is a diverse arts and entertainment destination as well, with a lot of museums, theaters and live music clubs. Also here you can find one of the oldest zoos in the nation. The amenities, location and housing options of the community attract a mix of people of all ages and professions.

Lincoln Park Zoo

Lincoln Park Zoo is a 35-acre zoo located in Lincoln Park in Chicago, Illinois. The zoo was founded in 1868, making it one of the oldest zoos in the U.S. It is also one of a few free admission zoos in the United States
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DePaul University

DePaul University is a private university in Chicago, Illinois. Founded by the Vincentians in 1898, the university takes its name from the 17th-century French priest Saint Vincent de Paul. The Lincoln Park Campus is home to the Colleges of Liberal Arts and Social Sciences, Science and Health, and Education. It also houses the School of Music, the Theatre School, and the John T. Richardson Library.
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Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum

A nature museum that combines learning with high-quality interactive displays and activities. The museum's exhibits today include displays on the ecological history of the Illinois region, a live butterfly house, and a green home demonstration. The butterfly house features more than 200 species of native and exotic butterflies. One of the museum's ongoing scientific efforts is the study, care, and breeding of native butterflies for species population support in the Chicago area. The museum also offers more than 100 educational programs in the natural sciences for adults and children.
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Diversey Harbor

Diversey Harbor is located in the heart of Lincoln Park, within Lake Shore Drive. Due to bridge restrictions, Diversey accommodates only power boaters. The harbor has a friendly and lively reputation. It is located within walking distance from the Lincoln Park Zoo and the Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum. The harbor is home to the Diversey Yacht Club. Diversey has 719 slips and it can accommodate boats from 25’-50’ in length.
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Second City Theater

The Second City is an improvisational comedy enterprise, best known as the first ever on-going improvisational theater troupe in the United States (Chicago) and Canada (Toronto). It also has programs that run out of Los Angeles. It began in 1950s, as small groups of undergraduates, including young actors such as Mike Nichols and Elaine May, who met at Jimmy's Woodlawn Tap, a bar on the University of Chicago campus, which later became the Compass Players, a 1950s cabaret revue show. The Second City Theatre opened on December 16, 1959 and has since expanded its presence to several other cities, including Toronto and Los Angeles. The Second City has produced television programs in both the United States and Canada including SCTV, Second City Presents, and Next Comedy Legend. Since its debut, the Second City has consistently been a starting point for comedians, award winning actors, directors, and others in show business.
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Chicago History Museum

Chicago History Museum (formerly known as the Chicago Historical Society) was founded in 1856 to study and interpret Chicago's history. It was renamed the Chicago History Museum in September 2006. Much of the early collection of the Chicago Historical Society was destroyed in the Great Chicago Fire in 1871, but like the city, the museum rose from the ashes. The museum explores both Chicago and American history. Exhibitions draw primarily on the museum's own collection, which numbers approximately 22 million holdings. The Museum houses Chicago's most important collection of materials related to local history. The extensive research library includes books and other published materials, manuscripts, paintings, sculptures, and photos. It is open to the public, including students working on school projects. The costume collection numbers more than 50,000 pieces and dates from the 18th century to the present. It contains numerous couture pieces, items created by well-known Chicago manufacturers and designers, and garments worn by notable residents.
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Steppenwolf Theatre

Steppenwolf Theatre Company is a Tony Award-winning Chicago theatre company founded in 1976 by Gary Sinise, Terry Kinney, and Jeff Perry in the basement of a Highland Park, IL church. It has since relocated to Chicago's Halsted Street, in the Lincoln Park neighborhood, and has become the nation’s premier ensemble theater—redefining the landscape of acting and performance. The ensemble has grown to 44 members who represent a remarkable generation of actors, directors and playwrights. Thrilling, powerful, groundbreaking productions from Balm in Gilead and The Grapes of Wrath to August: Osage County have made the theater legendary. Steppenwolf has the distinction of being the only theater ever to receive the National Medal of Arts. While firmly grounded in the Chicago community, nearly 40 original Steppenwolf productions have enjoyed success both nationally and internationally. To purchase tickets or learn more, visit

North Avenue Beach

The North Avenue Beach is considered by many to be Chicago's premier beach. It has the largest lifeguard staff and is home to the most developed beach house. Technically running from North Avenue to Diversey Harbor in the Lincoln Park neighborhood, North Avenue Beach is characterized by its piers that hold the sand in place and create a scalloped shoreline, terminating in a Cape Cod-like hook. The beach hosts international volleyball tournaments as well as millions of sun worshippers every year. Chicago Park District lines the beach with poles for individuals and leagues to hang volleyball nets. These nets and this portion of the lakefront bike/running/blading path attract large numbers of people on weekends and weeknights. North Avenue is also center stage for the Chicago Air & Water Show, which draws over a million people a day from Ohio to Diversey along the lakefront. North Avenue Beach is the site of the annual AVP Chicago Open. The beach house resembles an ocean liner and contains bike and sports equipment rental, a bar and restaurant (Castaways), concession stand, a lifeguard station, and restrooms.
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British School of Chicago

British International School of Chicago, Lincoln Park is the only Nursery – Grade 5, primary school in the city offering a rigorous academic program supported by a curriculum based on values and character development. The individualized approach to learning supports ambitious and innovative students who achieve their best selves both academically, socially and emotionally. Our community is diverse and provides a global education to all students.

Our Lincoln Park campus has been recently renovated and thoughtfully designed for children ages 3 -11 to provide open and purposeful learning environments that spark their curiosity, encourage them to be leaders and young entrepreneurs. Our campus houses a full STEAM corridor with two science labs, two art labs, a robotics lab and a maker lab, offering all of our student’s cutting edge hands on learning experiences. In addition, there are two large play spaces both indoor and outdoor, a roof top garden, and gymnasium, kitchen facilities for culinary arts, designated World Languages classrooms, a magical library and dance studio. Our students are both challenged and supported with personalized learning that extends beyond the classroom through many partnerships around the city.

Latin School of Chicago

Latin School's mission is to provide students with a rigorous and innovative educational program in a community that embraces diversity of people, cultures and ideas. Latin seeks to inspire its students to pursue their passions and lead lives of purpose and excellence. Students are given a strong foundation in the core subject areas of English, math, science, social studies, history, world languages and the arts. Starting in the lower school Latin’s curriculum takes an interdisciplinary approach. In high school, Latin offers a large number of innovative electives in every subject area in addition to the core requirements. Many classes have an experiential component to bring the material to life—mock trials, hands-on labs and Model U.N. simulations, to name a few. Upper school students may choose from more than 150 classes each year, including a full range of AP courses.
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Francis W. Parker School

Francis W. Parker School is an independent school serving students who live in the Chicago area from junior kindergarten through grade twelve of high school. Located in Chicago's Lincoln Park neighborhood, the school is based on the progressive educational philosophies of John Dewey and Colonel Francis Wayland Parker, emphasizing community and citizenship.
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Lincoln Avenue

Ready for a night out? Lincoln Avenue is filled with restaurants and bars. Enjoy a meal and a drink at the famous Red Lion Pub. And be sure not to miss one of Chicago's best summer festivals at Taste of Lincoln Avenue every July.
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Armitage Avenue

Looking for a great place to stroll and shop? Armitage Avenue is the perfect spot from cute boutiques to brand name stores. Looking for shoes? Head to Lori's. Looking for pampering gifts? Head to Lush. Need a last minute unique gift? Head to Art Effect. Strolling with your furry friend? Stop in Barker and Meowsky for a treat.
Image Courtesy of: Tony Webster

Wendy Berg

Guide Author
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Chicago's Lincoln Park Living