Rogers Park in Chicago A Free-Thinking Neighborhood

 Once a Rogers Parker, always a Rogers Parker, it seems. Whether a current or  long-removed resident, folks seem to take pride in their links to the community  bordered by the lake, Western Avenue, Evanston and Devon Avenue.  

 It may be the independent thought and spirit often attributed to Rogers Parkers  that unites them all. These are people who go their own way and think their own  thoughts. If they wanted to be just like everyone else, they'd live elsewhere.  

 Arts, Shopping & Recreation

 Nowhere is it more evident than in Jarvis Square, a rapidly revitalizing  shopping and entertainment district nestled amid red-brick two flats in the  shadow of the ancient, ivy-covered Morse Red Line station. The quaint two-block  quarter is filled with one-of-a-kind businesses like Charmers restaurant,  Poitin Stil Irish pub and Candlelite Chicago Thin Crust Pizzas and Gourmet  Burgers. There's also Taste Food & Wine, a European-style wine shop and gourmet food store serving tempting  imported specialty foods, and Luzzat Restaurant, an eatery serving Indian and  Pakistani cuisine.  

 According to the locals, just a few years ago, you wouldn't walk around here at  night without feeling like you were being watched. But now it's turned into  everything you'd want in a neighborhood—families with strollers, people walking their dogs, people saying 'hi' to you on  the street." Another up-and-coming district surrounds the one-month-old Morse  Theatre, 1328 West Morse Avenue, whose arresting blue-and-bronze art deco neon  sign reflects the theater's silent-film nickelodeon origins. The 299-seat house  specializes in live music and recently added a restaurant next door, The  Century Public House.  

 The Morse Theatre is an appropriate addition to a community already known for  its performing arts. There is a dynamic theater scene with the 30-year-old  Lifeline Theatre, renowned for creative set designs, as well as No Exit and  Heartland Studio. The latter two are connected to Heartland Café, a Rogers Park institution in step with the neighborhood's independent stance.  

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Comments

  • Overall, I think the park looks very nice since it has reopened.I do think, toguhh, that I would like to see more overall green and vegetation, especially in the form of wild areas. A lot of trees came down, and while the current park is still very green, I would like to see it planned so that the vegetation can fill out more in the future.I maintain a page about , and according to the principles explained on that page, the current landscaping in Clark Park is good, but could be better. I think the weakest point is that there are virtually no wild areas. Yes, it is a small city park, but there is more than enough room for small wild areas, especially in the flower beds in various parts of the park. Maintaining these beds is labor- and resource-intensive. Leaving areas wild can both save on maintenance effort and costs, and also provide greater ecological value.Rather than planting these with purchased, cultivated plants, I think it would be better to grow native plants from seed, and then maintain the beds only by removing aggressive non-native plants and trimming the beds.People might say but we want the park to look nice , and it looks ugly if it's overgrown. But personally, I think that the lusher and denser the vegetation, the nicer it gets. Air quality is also an issue in Philly in the summer, and the denser and more diverse the vegetation is, the more pollutants will be absorbed. Current, to me, the park looks too carefully manicured for my aesthetic sense. Everything in it is carefully landscaped and planted. I would appreciate a wilder, more lush park, filled out with dense vegetation in the flower beds, with native plants allowed to reproduce naturally in a number of areas.What do you think? I would like to work together with others to make this happen.