10 Reasons Why We Love Logan Square
It’s no secret we have a deep appreciation for all aspects of Chicago, and Logan Square is no exception. The @properties Christie’s International Real Estate office near the intersection of Milwaukee and California gives us a great vantage point to enjoy all this neighborhood has to offer, from coffee shops to Blue Line stops to standing in line for a mango paleta from a local cart vendor. It’s easy to see why Logan Square was named one of the coolest communities in the country, so the next time you find yourself in the area, here’s what you can’t miss:
Want to explore the rich history of this neighborhood? Take a two-hour, story-filled Logan Square walking or bike tour with the Chicago Architectural Foundation. Each circuit highlights the “green necklace” of parks and thoroughfares in the area. The Urban Art 101 walking tour guides you through Logan’s long-standing public artworks, including murals from visiting artists. Settle in at the Comfort Station, a refurbished historic rest stop for trolley riders, where you can now find community art displays and other public events. And if you’re looking to acquire art for your own collection, your guide can point you in the direction of one of the many nearby galleries.
The Logan Square Theatre, affectionately dubbed “The Logan,” is where yesterday and today meet. The theatre first opened in 1915 as a single-screen cinema and has undergone multiple renovations over the years. The most recent improvements include updated seating, a DOLBY sound system, and multiple screening rooms. Watch a first-run flick or catch a late-night oldie at the refurbished, marble-walled Art Deco movie house.
Logan Square has a full calendar of community festivals and events. The Logan Square Farmers Market is the only weekly local market held year-round and was named best in the city by Chicago Magazine for its bounty of local produce, flowers, handmade products, fresh food vendors, music, and yoga.
Soak up three days of live music, art and sunshine during the Logan Square Arts Festival, held every June at the monument on the square. The vibrant fest draws over 30,000 people and raises thousands of dollars to preserve and beautify the neighborhood.
The party doesn’t end when colder temps arrive. From Halloween through the holidays, stately Logan Boulevard and its quaint cross streets are the perfect places to enjoy seasonal fun.
Beautiful Bike Routes
One of Logan Square’s newest attractions is the 606, which borders the southern edge of the neighborhood from Ridgeway east through Bucktown to Ashland Avenue. Once a rail line, the 606 is now a 2.7-mile elevated linear park offering biking and walking lanes, open space for live events, art installations and play areas. Hop on the scenic shortcut on a bike commute, or wheel the stroller around sculptures and take in the beautiful view of city life below.
The Best of Both Brews
Like it strong, seasonal, artisanal, macro, micro or hyperlocal? You’re in the right place for the best of both brew worlds in Logan Square. Gaslight Coffee Roasters, Intelligentsia Coffeebar, Damn Fine Coffee Bar, Ipsento, Cafe Mustache and many other neighborhood spots serve up a mean cuppa while you work, or fuel up during an impossibly long waitlist for brunch at Longman & Eagle.
If beer is more your thing, Off Color Brewing, Hopewell Brewing Company, Revolution Brewing, Maplewood Brewery & Distillery, and Pipeworks Brewing Co. are all located in or near Logan Square, most with taprooms and tours.
All the Eats
No question, you will find a new appreciation for ramen after visiting Furious Spoon, but that’s just a small taste of the Logan Square restaurant scene. Lula Cafe is considered a pioneer in Chicago’s farm-to-table movement, and Bang Bang Pie Shop is always reliable for handmade baked goods. Splurge a little at Osteria Langhe, named one of the city’s best Italian spots (and we all know how stiff that competition is).
Spend Thursdays at 90 Miles Cuban Cafe’s weekly all-you-can-eat pig roast and lazy Sundays at Jam for brunch (actually, go on a Thursday so you can get in quickly and really linger). Margie’s Candies is a must – Open for nearly a century, its menu is packed full of homemade ice cream sundaes, hand-dipped candy, and nostalgic sweets. If you are your own chef, pick up your ingredients at the Dill Pickle Co-op, voted best grocery store in the neighborhood.
Logan Square’s quirky side is most evident in its shops, like Challengers Comics and Wolfbait & B-Girls, a clothing store and gift shop run by two local designers. Steel Petal Press has snarky gifts. You’ve never had a better haircut and honest talk about what stores and restaurants are popping up in the neighborhood than at Sparrow Hair, where the talented owners also sell to-die-for essential oils and blast David Bowie while somehow creating a sanctuary in the middle of Milwaukee Avenue.
If you want to dig deep into the city’s blues roots, head over to Rosa’s Lounge, Chicago’s self-proclaimed friendliest blues bar, where musicians have been playing into the wee hours for 39 years. Sip on craft cocktails at the trending-now Spilt Milk or Scofflaw, or slip into one of the many, many dive bars and corner taps. And if you like a little pinball or Pac Man with your IPA, Emporium Arcade Bar will light you up. Cole’s Bar’s weekly open mic night boasts 50 comics and is always free.
Two iconic Logan Square venues have been a part of the community for a century. The Logan Square Auditorium (LSA) is a historic amphitheater that opened in 1915. LSA hosts concerts, comedy shows, and special events, and can be rented out for weddings. Speaking of tying the knot, Stan Mansion, built in 1928, is another highly sought-after spot for nuptials. Located at the corner of Kedzie and Fullerton, the mansion is on the site of a former Masonic lodge. The building underwent a comprehensive restoration in 2018, including the addition of a two-bed, two-bath bridal suite.
Parks, Green Spaces, and Boulevards
Logan Square Park serves as the unofficial central hub of the neighborhood. It is not only home to the Arts Festival and the Illinois Centennial Monument, but it also connects to an extensive network of green spaces through the Chicago Boulevard system, a masterwork of urban planning that features 26 miles of landscaped thoroughfares all across the city.
In Logan Square, the broad, tree-lined boulevards not only offer a touch of nature amidst the urban environment, but also serve as a convenient way to navigate the neighborhood. Along the thoroughfare, you’ll find treasures like Palmer Square, a seven-acre city park with a playground and running track circling around the periphery of the green space. With landscaped medians, historic architecture, and spacious pedestrian walkways, the boulevards are a cherished feature of Logan Square, showcasing the city’s dedication to creating sustainable, livable communities.
Diverse Housing Options
From single-family homes to modern condominiums, Logan Square offers a diverse range of housing options. The neighborhood’ features a variety of architectural styles, such as classic Chicago-style two-flats, greystones and Victorian mansions. The area also boasts several new construction developments, which offer contemporary architecture and amenities. With a mix of rental and ownership opportunities, Logan Square’s housing market is accessible. The neighborhood’s reputation for livability and affordability continues to attract residents from all walks of life, making it a highly coveted destination in the city.
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