Visit the Squares
Directly off the Blue Line stop lies none other than the original Logan Square. In its center rests the Illinois Centennial Memorial monument, with its eagle gazing sagely across the neighborhood. The Square is home to an art and music festival in the summer, and in the off-season is an excellent place to mingle with the locals. Between Kedzie boulevard and Western Avenue is Palmer Square, both a park and sub-neighborhood. Trees are scattered about the park, offering a beautiful shades of red and orange for a late fall picnic.
Logan Square has a wide variety of subcultures, and has many stores to supply the various hobbies that correspond to them. Whether it’s vaping, comic-booking, vinyl record-collecting, or simply thrifting, Logan Square has shopping offerings to satiate even the most obscure tastes. One stand out is Blue Jay Way, located on Milwaukee Avenue. Peeping out of its glass windows are an explosion of color from original artwork and vintage toys. Walking into Blue Jay is an ecstatic rush of nostalgia.
Blue Jay Way Vintage, 2489 N Milwaukee ave, Chicago, IL, USA, +1 773 329 0901
The Logan Theatre
Opening in 1915 originally as the Paramount Theatre, this space has seen a lush history of moviegoers. Connected to it are a Bar and Lounge, offering a great spot for post-film discussion. Beyond films, the Logan Theatre has open mic comedy on every 1st and 3rd Wednesday of the month. Since it’s privately owned, the venue can be rented out for private parties, and often has independent film exhibitions.
The Logan Theatre, 2646 N Milwaukee ave, Chicago, IL, USA, +1 773 342 5555
Logan Square Farmers Market
After a long Saturday night, waking up early for a walk down to the local farmers market is the perfect way to ring in a new week. Various tents offer fresh fruit, homemade pizza and other food, as well as essential oils. It’s the best place to stock up on fresh produce before Monday rolls in, and even features hand-crafted goods such as clothing and blankets. One of its other highlights is the Bus Shop, a traveling vintage clothing shop.
Logan’s Square propensity for repurposing is evidenced no better than by the 606 bike trail. Originally a train line, the 606, also known as the Bloomingdale Trail, has recently been opened as a bike and running trail, spanning from North Ridgeway Avenue to North Marshfield Avenue. The 2.7-mile elevated path offers beautiful views of the neighborhoods, as well as parks and various art installations. Whether it’s commuting or casual walks, the 606 is a useful and leisurely addition to the neighborhood.
Art and Concerts
Home to many performance artists, the Square has many creative spaces. Formal venues such as Concord Music Hall offer an excellent place to see bigger name artists. The DIY scene is also prevalent, allowing for smaller scale bands to gain some exposure at venues such as Wally’s World. The Whistler is an easily missed small bar space that features live music and other performances. Various art galleries are scattered throughout the neighborhood, although some find their art manifested in the form of less restricted graffiti.
Concord Music Hall, 2047 N Milwaukee Ave, Chicago, IL, USA, +1 773 570 4000
The Whistler, 2421 N Milwaukee Ave, Chicago, IL, USA, +1 773 227 3530
Aside from a plethora of bars and restaurants, the Square has many interesting places to spend a Friday night. The East Room is a bar and dance club located in an unassuming building that could easily be missed from the outside. The inside, however, has an enigmatic design, featuring multiple rooms (one of which is an unused elevator), and hypnotic tile flooring blurred by red lights. The venue is used for a wide range of events, such as dance parties, concerts, and art shows.
The East Room, 2828 W Medill ave, Chicago, IL, USA +1 773 530 1478
By Matt Persson