Only because I collect antique postcards of Chicago do I know that old German beer gardens once existed in spots I often pass. One was Rainbo Gardens on the west side of N Clark just above Lawrence. Another was Rienzi Gardens on the northeast corner of N Clark & Diversey. Another was Marigold Gardens where Grace and N Broadway come together. These were fairly large outdoor venues with trees, tables, live music, and an outdoor dance floor, although there was also a building to provide year-around music and dancing (and beer). If you google the name of the garden you can read description of the times.
The Marigold gardens became the Marigold Ballroom, which hosted boxing and wrestling in the arena that is now the church on the site. The Marigold Bowl carried on the tradition of recreation/entertainment on the site. After the gardens were gone, my belief is that most of the parcel became the parking lots for the Ballroom/arena and bowling alley.
Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 09/18/2013 04:12AM by Deejo.
Imagine a beer garden on the roof top of a building 130 feet above the ground; and where its patrons could view the relocated Ferris Wheel of the 1893 World's Fair. The beer garden, however, was never allowed to be built because the Illinois Supreme Court ruled 1896 that it could not be issued a liquor license. The location was 2619-2665 North Clark; named the Ferris Wheel Park.
See the photo of the location, and also a building shown directly in front of the big wheel that still exists to this day at 577 West Wrightwood -- at least according to the 2011 Google Street View.
Right after the 1893 Columbian Exposition a small amusement park called San Souci opened along the south side of the Midway at 60th & Cottage Grove. After it folded, it was replaced by an all-seasons beer garden called Midway Gardens designed by Frank Lloyed Wright. When Midway Gardens' day (1914-1929) had passed, the name was retained for the apartment building that has been there, I know, since the '50s---don't know when it was built.
There used to be one at around Albany or Troy and 26th Street in the Little Village neighborhood. I used to go there with my parents on Sunday afternoons to listen to German and Polish polka bands. There was also Wozniak's beer garden on Blue Island and Oakley which was attached to Wozniak's restaurant and bowling alley.
I think the one you are talking about is Pilsen Park, which was owned by the brewery down there. They brewed Yusay Beer. I heard stories about the park from a friend of mine who was born on Albany in the 2500 S. Block.
As most brew gardens, this one offers a children play area, folks sit with their nourishment and brewskie right beside that and can appreciate the sun. What's more, in this specific brewskie garden, an exceptional highlight is included
Was there a beer garden or two near the south west side cemeteries, like near 87th and Kean near the lithuanian national cemetery? and what about adjacent to st. casimirs on pulaski (where Marist High is located)? can anyone refresh on this? Thanks!
What at is now Merrimac Park was at one time Kolze's Electric Park, which was so named due to the electric streetcars that took people out there. Local history states that they were famous for their Wiener Backhandl. (Fried Chicken). For years, there was a large frame structure on the NW corner of Dakin and Narragansett that had a coffee shop on the first floor, and what appeared to be hotel rooms above. Wonder if it had some connection to the park. Evidently the Park District bought the land after the Kolze family died off, sometime in the early 1930's I believe.
Before they built the expressway, does anyone remember a watering hole beer garden at 732 west cermak (still there, a brown brick building) tavern. I believe my Dad took me there as a kid, he was 'visiting' Anton Cukur, a family friend. Anyone remember?