The history of Winnetka, IL starts with the 100 inhabitants who settled here 200 years ago. Today, the population has grown to more than 12,000 locals who enjoy their slow-paced lifestyle on the outskirts of the Windy City. There are plenty of historical spots to visit here, and over 242 acres of public parks operated by the Winnetka Park District. The local animal hospital, located within walking distance of central Winnetka, is happy to lend a helping paw to pooches in need.
Grab your leash and em-bark on an outdoor adventure at Centennial Park, featuring miles of walking paths, plenty of shade, and amazing spots to sniff and explore. The best part of the park is Centennial Dog Beach, where your pooch can make a splash in the surf or bury his nose in the sand! You'll need to obtain a membership to visit this pristine, sandy beach. Be sure to pick up after your pal to keep the beach nice and clean for everyone.
The village of Winnetka is basically surrounded by walking trails and rail-trails. You can easily access Green Bay Trail, stretching for about 9 miles from Highland Park to Wilmette, from Winnetka. Or, feel free to travel east to find the challenging North Branch Trail, running from Northbrook to Chicago for more than 19 miles.
McCormick Boulevard starts at Green Bay Road and follows the stream of North Shore Channel, winding alongside the green recreation areas situated along the channel's banks. Stop near Dempster Street to find Skokie Northshore Sculpture Park, which is the pawfect place to stretch your legs after a long ride. There are several walking trails here where dogs are allowed to accompany their masters and sniff out a couple of the park's unique sculptures. Afterward, don't fur-get to stop by Dengeos Restaurant, located right across the street from the park, which welcomes dogs to dine with their owners.
Stretching through the northern part of Skokie, Oakton Street connects the city with Evanston to the west and is home to a great Fido-friendly spot near the North Shore Channel. Here, you'll find Pooch Park, which has plenty of space for pups to run and play. This park features two separate areas for the large and small breeds, lots of grass, drinking water, and agility equipment to train or have some extra fun. You'll need to obtain a membership to play here, though. Afterward, travel north along the street to find Tein Li Chow, a dog-friendly Chinese restaurant with two outdoor tables for pups.
West Ridge is one Chicago's 77 neighborhoods. It's located in the northern region of the city, bordering with Rogers Park to the northeast and Peterson Park to the south. This sprawling neighborhood is home to a number of local businesses, convenience stores, and recreation areas. You and your furry friend will want to make a beeline for Warren Park, located in the heart of the neighborhood. Walking trails are available here for leashed strolls, and some even allow pups to explore off-leash, but you'll need to pay close attention to signage. This unfenced park is usually fairly crowded, so it may not be suitable for timid pups or those who tend to run off.
The lakefront neighborhood of Edgewater is located north of Chicago and 7 miles from the Loop. This densely populated residential neighborhood welcomes you and your pup to explore and have fun in Berger Park on North Sheppard Road. This scenic and surprisingly quiet spot tucked away from the hustle and bustle of Chicago is the pawfect place to have a leashed walk with Fido, or let your children play at the playground. You and your pooch can marvel at the mansion here, but dogs aren't allowed to explore inside. Afterward, chill out at one of Waterfront Cafe's outdoor tables. The staff are very friendly toward pups, and will even bring Fido his own water bowl!
The Budlong Woods neighborhood is bordered by North Shore Channel to the west and North Lincoln Avenue to the east, forming a nice, medium-sized area in the northern part of Chicago. Located at heart of the neighborhood are residential quarters with quiet streets that will lead you to Chicago Park District River Park. This green public park provides easy access to the North Branch Chicago River, and has an amazing dog park for your pooch’s excitement! River Park Dog Park is a fully fenced, off-leash park complete with puppy pools where your pal can dip his paws on a hot day!