Labor Day Staycation: Why I love Logan Square

Friday, September 04, 2015

Sometimes in life you are lucky enough to live in a place so fabulous, that you look forward to the opportunity to stay home instead of travel. Right now, I feel that way about our current neighborhood in Chicago - Logan Square. And I love to travel, a lot. But this Labor Day, instead of traveling over the long weekend, we will be staying put. Why, you ask? Here are 26 super fun, and many super delicious, reason why:

Art - it's everywhere. From the sides of buildings to restaurant walls to the community art space of Comfort Station, Logan Square is covered with art. Currently at Comfort Station: Logan Square Preservation Presents: Rapid Transition; Logan Square From Terminal To Subway Stop. An Exhibition Of Unseen Vintage Images That Document The Excavation And Construction Of The Blue Line Extension.

Boulevards - turning roads into parks, the boulevard's grassy medians provide a gathering place for neighbors to grill out, play bocce or toss a ball with four-legged friends. Located on the National Register of Historic Places and designated a Chicago Landmark, our boulevards make living in the city feel more like a neighborhood and less a cement jungle. 

CTA Blue Line - From O'Hare to downtown, the blue line connects some of Chicago's most exciting neighborhoods. The train makes it easy to visit the museums and attractions of downtown, try a new restaurant in Wicker Park, shop in trendy Bucktown or even escape for a weekend away through O'Hare. Just grab your ventra card and go!

Dunlay's on the Square - if you have kids, you know why this is a go to, the city-dweller's version of Applebee's only with much better food and drinks (their bloody mary is still one of my favorites in the city). 

Emporium Arcade Bar = where adults go to feel like kids again. 

Farmer's Market - when your farmer's market gets written up in Cooking Light, you know it's good. It's more than a place to buy great food, it's an experience with music. 

Greystone Mansions - the historic homes that line the boulevards are beautiful to behold. You can view them up close on the annual Logan Square historic house tour or you can play make believe with these adorable paper doll houses (I already bought one for my daughter and am counting down the days until she is old enough to play with it!) 

Hachi's Kitchen - Best. Sushi. Ever. The spicy white tuna crunch and halloween maki are favorites. 

Illinois Centennial Monument - designed by Henry Bacon (column) and Evelyn Beatrice Longman (reliefs) the monumet stands in the center of Logan Square. It was built in 1918 to commemorate the 100th anniversary of Illinois' statehood. Seen on numerous Logan Square paraphernalia, the eagle is our neighborhood (as well as my fantasy football team's) mascot. I love seeing the eagle peak out above the trees, welcoming me home as I drive down Logan Boulevard.

Jogging through the tree lined boulevards, along the Bloomingdale Trail and on the track at Palmer Square, there are tons of great paths to explore.

Keeping up with the "cool kids." - Which I obviously don't, but by hanging out in Logan Square, I maintain the image that I am hip in my post 30 life (sniff, sniff). That was hard to type.

Logan Theatre - this historic theater was recently renovated to include seats that don't swallow you whole, while still maintaining its retro vibe. With $7 tickets and a bar that provides takeaway drinks for your movie viewing pleasure, it is a top date night destination. 

Miko's Italian Ice - the coconut flavor is my favorite and I recommend never ordering any size smaller than a jumbo. Trust me on this one.

New Wave Coffee - with more and more cafes and coffee shops popping up in Logan Square, this spot continues to be a favorite. Reminiscent of a new grad's first studio apartment, the cafe is full of second hand furniture, eclectic art and the aroma of freshly brewed Metropolis Coffee - another Chicago favorite.

Owen & Engine - another food favorite - do you sense a theme of our neighborhood ;) - they have delicious British inspired food (yes it's possible) and drinks. The restaurant is also conveniently located across the street from the Regal City North movie theater, making it a great dinner and movie date night option.

Palmer Square and its Velveteen Rabbit inspired play area. This huge open space has enough trees to provide shade from the sun but also enough open space to throw a frisbee with friends. It's also a convenient location for runners with a winding path encircling the park.

Quirky dress (and attitude) of the hipster crowd. While this isn't necessarily why I love Logan Square, the unique characteristics of its inhabitants definitely keeps things interesting. The pants are sometimes tighter than I'd like and the beards too long, but I'll take that over polos and khakis any day.

Revolution Brewing - with two Logan Square locations, the brew pub and brewery, revolution is living up to its name and revolutionizing Chicago's craft beer scene. You simply cannot come to Logan Square and not try a beer or two. My favorite is the Little Bit Crazy. 

Sleeping arrangements - when family comes to stay, we have more than our pull out sofa bed to offer them. Providing more than delicious meals and every whiskey known to man, Longman & Eagle also has several rooms available at their upstairs boutique inn. Instead of chocolates on your pillow, guests receive something better - a token for a complimentary whiskey! 

The 606 - The newly updated Bloomingdale Trail has a lot to offer residents, whether using it as a jogging path or a leisurely stroll, the new path has certainly elevated our neighborhoods green space! 

Unity Park - with a huge playground, refreshing splash pad, movies in the park and public restrooms, we are frequent visitors to this park to soak up the wonderful but limited summer days of Chicago.

Views of fireworks from our rooftop on the 4th of July. Since our boulevards are designated Chicago Landmarks, there are certain restraints on any construction, including a building's height. Fewer high rise buildings make for extended unobstructed views across our fabulous city to the best skyline around.

Wolfbait & B-girls - if I need to find a one of a kind, simply lovely gift for someone, this is my go to store. And it's not because it is only feet from my front door. I ALWAYS find the perfect gift here and I love supporting the talented Chicago artisans who sell their wares at this female-owned fabulous shop!   

Xchange - as in the Logan Square Book Exchange where neighbors share their recently read but not able to fit on their bookshelf books. 

You'll love Logan Square - come visit today! 

Z - Who can ever come up with Z? In place of a Z mention, here are a few more reasons why you should plan your staycation in Logan Square today! Lula's, Fleur, Logan Square Dog Park, Dill Pickle Co-Op Grocery Store, Reno and El Cid.  

Did I miss something? Feel free to add more lovely logan square locales in the comments section!

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