About Park Ridge
Park Ridge is practically a Chicago neighborhood, bordering the city’s northern edge, just 15 miles from downtown. But make no mistake; Park Ridge is a decidedly suburban community.
The city of Park Ridge is proud of its small-town vibe, one reason why many residents have lived here their entire lives. Residents enjoy all that the city has to offer with shopping, restaurants and picturesque parks as well as excellent schools.
Park Ridge has several recognizable landmarks including the art deco Pickwick Theatre in Uptown that dates back to 1928. The Pickwick is on the National Register of Historic Places; it is a movie theater and venue for plays and concerts. The Pickwick’s façade was one of the theaters used as the backdrop for the opening credits of Gene Siskel and Roger Ebert’s At the Movies.
Park Ridge also has made an appearance in movies including the 1980 Blues Brothers film that includes a chase through downtown. Actors Carrie Snodgress and Harrison Ford as well as former First Lady, U.S. Senator and U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton all attended Maine Township High School East.
Clinton was in the first class to graduate from the new Maine South High School, which opened her senior year to accommodate the Baby Boomer population. Ford is credited as being the first sports announcer for Maine East’s student-run radio station.
Today Maine Township High School District 207 serves the community with high schools including Maine South High School and Maine East High School. Students in the northern part of the city have the option of attending either East or South. Maine West High School is located to the west in Des Plaines.
Among the city’s most notable citizens is Mother Frances Cabrini, the first U.S. citizen to be canonized, who attended St. Paul of the Cross Church and owned a farm here.
The city is proud to be a “community of volunteers.” The Brickton Art Center, Park Ridge Civic Orchestra and the Center of Concern have won Governor’s Home Town awards for excellence and volunteer involvement. The Park Ridge Fine Arts Symphony Orchestra offers free summer concerts in front of City Hall and farmer’s markets from spring to fall.
Park Ridge has received several prestigious awards for the Uptown development, which was recognized for its attractive combination of residences, restaurants and retail. Public art sculptures are featured as well by a selection of acclaimed artists commissioned by the city’s Public Art Commission.
Residents enjoy the new award-winning Prospect Park, which opened in 2016. The property’s history goes back over a century. The new park blends historic landmark preservation with new amenities. The park includes walking paths for residents and their dogs, camps and early childhood education as well as new athletic fields and outdoor performing arts area with free family concerts.
Commuters have easy access to downtown Chicago with two commuter rail stations on Metra’s Union Pacific/Northwest Line, as well as access to major expressways and O’Hare International Airport.