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Get to know Wicker Park

Wicker Park is on the edge of downtown Chicago, and it’s on the cutting edge of Chicago culture. Through the ‘80s and ‘90s, it was the sort of distressed community that attracted musicians and artists with its low rents and counterculture attitude. Some of Chicago’s biggest rock bands met, rehearsed, and recorded here; artists and actors lived in the garrets and rundown apartments. Kids from the suburbs would come in over the weekends just to hang out somewhere cool. And Wicker Park was undeniably cool. Inevitably counterculture becomes culture, and Wicker Park got cleaned up. Apartment buildings were refurbished, and abandoned factories became luxury lofts. Farmers’ markets came in, along with cute coffee shops, European cafes, and on-trend clothing boutiques. While it may have lost its edge, Wicker Park has not lost its cool, and it’s still home to hip iconoclasts — they just live in nicer apartments now.

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Living in Chicago

There may be people who live in Chicago who do not love Chicago, but you’ll be hard-pressed to find one of them. From the shores of Lake Michigan to the sprawling suburbs, Chicago is a global metropolis that still manages to be Midwestern friendly. The city has some 600 parks, and 18.5 miles of trail along the shore of the lake and another lining the rivers of downtown. The food is among the best and most varied in the world. Museums and performance venues abound, and public art fills green space and public squares. Public transportation is easy, as is reaching either U.S. coast in half a day. Even in the midst of its notoriously frigid winters, you won’t find a warmer city to call home.