If West Rogers Park residents had not persisted, the 88 acres of Warren Park would have been developed into residential buildings and high rises. Instead, the neighborhood benefits from one of the most active parks in the city.
Besides a fieldhouse, there are outdoor facilities for baseball, basketball and soccer, plus the Robert A. Black 8-hole golf course and putting practice area. (Black was the Park District’s chief engineer for over 30 years.)
A jogging, walking and biking path around the park perimeter accommodates people of all ages, with exercise stations for cross-trainers. Dogs are another common sight on the paved trail.
The Blackhawk Skating Rink operates from Thanksgiving to February. The day I visited, people were socially-distanced in line, waiting to be admitted to the popular rink.
Warren Park also boasts one of the best hills in Chicago for sledding. No snow was present as of yet, but I saw daredevil kids on skateboards and bikes descending the steep hill at breakneck speed. I can’t wait to see sleds and toboggans swoosh down the incline.
We have Laurence C. Warren, an attorney and community leader, to thank for keeping this parcel as park land. The State of Illinois, north side community groups and the Chicago Park District also banded together to keep West Rogers Park green. Every season has its charms at Warren Park.