South Shore Cultural Center is a cultural facility that is listed on the National Register and has been recognized as a Chicago Landmark. Formerly known as the South Shore Country Club, the club was founded in 1905 and rebuilt in 1916 before being restored in 1975 by the Chicago Park District. The cultural center and venue is also geared up to host a fabulous Candlelight concert this season. With the help of a sea of flickering candles and the serene sounds of live music, a calming ambiance will be created in this beautiful setting that has served the people of the South Shore community for over 100 years.
Located in the South Shore community near Lake Michigan, the Mediterranean-style venue boasts a solarium, including a nature sanctuary and a butterfly garden, a formal dining hall and the Paul Robeson Theater. The grounds of the South Shore Cultural Center are the perfect haven for a nice day out with the family and the building itself can really be used for any type of event and special celebration. To get there you can take the 6 and 71 buses, but the venue can also be reached with the ME train.
Facts, Curiosities and Interesting Things about South Shore Cultural Center
1. In the 20th century, the Country Club catered only to white members.
Similar to other membership clubs, in the mid-20th century, as racial segregation persisted in the US, the club became a symbol of exclusivity, offering its services only to white members. However, with the Civil Rights Movement gaining momentum in the 1960s, the club faced pressure to change its discriminatory policies.
2. The stables that were once part of the South Shore Cultural Center are now being used by the Chicago police.
Besides the main clubhouse, the old Country Club also had stables, a nine-hole golf course, tennis courts, a bowling green, and a private beach on Lake Michigan, most of which are still used today for events and are open to the public. However, the horse stables are currently used by the Chicago Police Department’s mounted unit.
3. The Obamas got married at South Shore Cultural Center.
Before moving to the White House, long-time residents of Kenwood neighborhood of Chicago and former FLOTUS and POTUS Michelle and Barack Obama have a lot of history with South Side. That includes their wedding day! After exchanging vows at Trinity United Church of Christ in 1992, the couple had their wedding reception at South Shore Cultural Center.
What can you do at South Shore Cultural Center?
In addition to providing the perfect backdrop for these magnificent Candlelight concerts, South Shore Cultural Center hosts a range of events and workshops including yoga sessions, dance classes, music lessons and more. On walking into the venue you’ll find the Paul Robeson Theater, a 500-seat event space that boasts a dazzling chandelier.
What’s more, South Shore has recently added new adult art classes including textile art, drawing & painting, mixed media art, and ceramics. In addition to these fun and entertaining programs, South Shore Cultural Center hosts fun and family-friendly special events throughout the year and holiday-themed events.
South Shore Cultural Center in Chicago provides a wide range of spaces, both indoor and outdoor, suitable for different events and gatherings. From elegant ballrooms for weddings to open spaces for community gatherings, the versatility of the center attracts a diverse range of visitors. This season, the culturally significant venue will shine even more brightly as it hosts a spectacular tribute to your favorite anime themes. Candlelight concerts have been met by countless 5-star reviews and it’s an unforgettable experience you won’t want to miss out.