Patch Passport: Wilmette Offers Americana, Lake Michigan, Baha'i, Pancake House & Homer's
Both Wilmette and Kenilworth capture classic American culture.
From the instant you step out of the Linden Ave. CTA Station in Wilmette, a sense of classic American charm strikes you. Perhaps the sensation is sparked by the cobblestone, or knowing that you walk Norman Rockwell-esque avenues that were once similarly enjoyed by Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel, comedian Bill Murray and American Idol Season 10 finalist Casey Abrams.
Wander further north along Lake Michigan, and you're hit with becoming testaments to the country's history as you enter the Village of Kenilworth. The people who inhabit both villages continue to make them artistic gems that are pioneering community environmetnalism on the North Shore.
While you can stroll through the streets to check out all the historic architecture, we compiled a Patch Passport to tote around during the walk through Wilmette and Kenilworth:
Baha'i Temple: At one point fireman used to repel down the iconic white dome for training. More often than not this breathtaking worship space serves as a window to religious tolerance. In addition to attending a service, visitors can walk through the lushly landscaped grounds including a group of reflecting pools that surround the building.
Roemer Park: For 58 years this baseball diamond has been the foundation for little leaguers looking to make it big. Owned and operated by the Wilmette Baseball Association, Bill Murray prides himself on having played this field.
Gillson Beach: This stunning stretch of land was at one point contemplated to be a scene in the upcoming Matt Damon flick, Contagion, which filmed in Wilmette in late 2010. But Gillson's natural beauty is awe-inspiring and especially delightful during the Park District's Summer Under the Stars concert series hosted at the Wallace Bowl.
Actors Training Center at the Wilmette Theatre: Come check out some of the freshest talent from the area as they prime themselves for Broadway. Nestled above the iconic eatery, Chuck Wagon, this training center is a testament to the creative forces behind the Wilmette Theatre.
Chalet Nursery: Want to do more with your green thumb? In addition to offering an array of flowers and plants, Chalet Nursery also offers specialized lectures and courses. During the winter the building transforms into a winter wonderland, offering reindeer to pet.
Wilmette Golf Club: The Park District boasts that the Wilmette Golf Club offers "play like a 7,000 yard layout" that is "set up to be a test in patience and decision-making ability." For players new to the game, the golf club also offers some great professional trainers. After a long day on the course, partake in some delectable grub at the club's restaurant.
Loyola Academy's Football Team: Despite a crushing loss to Maine South last season, this team is still one to watch. One of the best football teams in the state, the Ramblers have some returning players and up-and-coming athletes that will make it another exciting fall.
St. Joseph's Cemetery: Built in 1843, St. Joseph's Cemetery is the third oldest Catholic cemetery in the Chicago-area. The Wilmette Historical Museum has spent the better part of the last year researching those laid to rest in the cemetery, many of whom were instrumental in the early days of Grosse Point, which would later become part of Wilmette.
The Kenilworth Club: Designed by George W. Maher and constructed in 1906, the Kenilworth Club serves as the village's community house. The historic builidng mimics the architectural stylings of Frank Lloyd Wright. Check out the space during its weekly, Thursday yoga classes.
Where to Eat:
Fuel | 1222 Washington Ct.
Homer’s Homemade Gourmet Ice Cream | 1237 Green Bay Rd .
Chick N Rib Joynt | 3217 Lake Ave .
Link's Sweet Bean | 1141 Greenleaf Ave.
Heavenly Hearth Bread Co. | 1101 Central Ave.
Burhop's Seafood | 1515 Sheridan Rd.
Ridgeview Grill | 827 Ridge Rd.
Convito Cafe & Market | 1515 Sheridan Rd.
Mrs. D's Wilmette Diner | 415 4th St.
Wah Mei Chop Suey | 326 Linden Ave
Gilson's | 1126 Central Ave.
Opart Thai House | 143 Skokie Blvd.
Olive Oil Restaurant and Bar | 1154 Central Ave.
The Noodle Cafe | 708 12th St.
House of Chan | 627 Green Bay Rd.
The Original Pancake House | 153 Green Bay Rd.
Hotcakes Cafe | 1195 Wilmette Ave.
Browse fruits, vegetables, flowers, cheeses, meats and breads from local and regional vendors.
- Where: Metra Union Pacific North Line: Wilmette Station, 722 Green Bay Rd, Wilmette, IL 60091
- Time: Weekly on Saturdays from 8 a.m.–1 p.m.
- Next on: Aug. 20
Vaudeville at the Mette
The show features comedy, music and magic performances; silent film screenings; and live music from pianist David Drazin.
- Where: Wilmette Theatre
- Time: Aug. 21 at 3 p.m.
Weekly Introduction to the Baha'i Faith
Learn more about the religion that inspired the building of this unique structure, which symbolizes unity and invites prayer to God. This approximately one hour long presentation provides an overview of the history, principles and practices of the Baha'i Faith.
- Where: Baha'i House of Worship, 100 Linden Ave, Wilmette, IL 60091 (847-853-2300)
- Time: Sundays, weekly from 1 p.m.–2 p.m.
- Next on: Aug. 21