Education & Recreation

Blue Beryl Dharma Center Lama Lobsang, who’s trained in the Gelugpa tradition of Tibetan Buddhism, shares his knowledge of Tibetan healing, yoga, and meditation at this nonprofit Buddhist meditation center. a1741 W. Columbia, 773-262-8191, or, $15 yoga classes, $50 to join a healing circle, $10 suggested donation for meditation.

Extreme Kung Fu/Wushu Training Center Specializing in contemporary wushu, traditional kung fu, mixed martial arts, and kickboxing. Other classes include boxing, tai chi, and Filipino martial arts. a6525 N. Clark, 773-719-6488,, $100-$125 per month, try any class for $15 (subtracted from monthly dues if you sign up).

Gendai Budo Martial Arts Classes in karate, kobudo, tai chi, and mixed martial arts. Based in the traditions of Okinawan karate, this dojo stresses repetition of technique and kaizen, or continual improvement. a1333 W. Devon, 773-856-6200,, $10 per class, $60 per month.

Inner Metamorphosis University Classes include silent sitting, tribal belly dance, “guided inner letting go,” and “flowering of the heart;” international retreats are also offered. a1418 W. Howard, 773-262-1468,, $10-$12 per class or $140 a month, free intro to meditation every Wednesday at 6:30 PM.

J. Miller Handcrafted Furniture This furniture gallery offers woodworking classes and workshops on everything from inlay to furniture design to cabinetmaking. a1774 W. Lunt, 773-761-3311,, $100-$545.

Klotz Guitar Studio Eric Klotz, who’s taught guitar for over a decade, offers private lessons in jazz, rock, metal, funk, blues, R&B, and composition, in person or via webcam. a1310 W. Birchwood, 701-361-4684,, $25-$40 per lesson.

Moonwater Healing Center Classes in energy healing and meditation, flower essences, and pre- and postnatal yoga, as well as therapies ranging from craniosacral bodywork to massage. a6960 N. Sheridan 1A, 773-793-3483,, $80-$90 per hour, package discounts available.

Performing Arts Limited Classes for all levels in acting, dance, music (voice, piano, guitar, and strings), and fitness (pilates and zumba). a2740 W. Touhy, (773)262-3262,, $45-$120 per month, package discounts available.

Philosophy Institute No prior knowledge of philosophy is necessary for the discussion-based classes at this nine-year-old institute, which cover thinkers from Nietzsche to Nagel. Spring classes start in May and run for eight weeks. a7447 N. Hoyne, 773-764-8926,, $140-$180.

Pilates Chicago Private and group pilates and yoga classes as well as workshops on topics like core anatomy and intensive mat training. a1220 W. Morse # 230, 773-274-2673,, $10-$60 per class, free pilates every Sunday at 5:30 PM.

Rogers Park Community Development Corporation This nonprofit organization offers free classes like “First Time Homebuyer Education” and “Landlord Training” for those considering buying a home. a1411 W. Lunt, 773-262-2290,

Sweet Magic Studio Classes include yoga, belly dancing, and tai chi. There are also workshops in ayurveda and topics like “Posture, Psoas, and Positivity” and “Chakras, Meridians, and Moods.” a6960 N. Sheridan, 773-764-6488,, $15 per class, $40 per workshop, discounts for multiple sessions.

Compiled by Hal Conick

Parks & Beaches

Indian Boundary Park Named after and sitting on a boundary line set up in a treaty between the United States government and the Potawatomi, Indian Boundary Park features a field house (designated a historical landmark by the city in 2005), a small zoo, and an active cultural calendar that includes regular concerts by the Civic Orchestra of Chicago. a2500 W. Lunt, 773-764-0338.

Loyola Park Besides its premier attraction—the beach—Loyola Park’s 21.5 acres encompass facilities for baseball, boxing, and tennis, among other activities. a1230 W. Greenleaf, 773-262-8605.

Pottawattomie Park Pottawattomie Park, named for the Potawatomi Indians, features three baseball diamonds, a full-size football/soccer field, four basketball courts, and two tennis courts; the air-conditioned field house contains a fitness center and a racquetball court. It also offers multiple organized activities for kids, including an afterschool arts, crafts, and sports program, a museums program, and a summer camp. a7340 N. Rogers, 773-262-5835.

Touhy Park A smaller park—just over six acres—with softball fields, tennis courts, two playgrounds, a community garden, and a small field house with early-childhood programming. a7348 N. Paulina, 773-262-6737.

Warren Park At 90 acres, this is the largest park in the Park District’s north region. Facilities include batting cages, a skate park, the Robert A. Black nine-hole golf course, a bike path, racquetball, tennis, and basketball courts, and, in the winter, an ice rink. a6601 N. Western, 773-262-6314.

Willye B. White Park Formerly Gale Park, Willye B. White Park was renamed in 2008 for the Olympic track and field medalist. It boasts the Park District’s newest field house, which sparked controversy last summer when alderman Joe Moore’s proposal to let the Boys & Girls Club program it prompted protests from community members, who ultimately prevailed. The center includes facilities for floor hockey and indoor basketball and offers dance classes for all ages, summer day camp, and preschool programs. a1610 W. Howard, 773-262-5051.

Rogers Park also contains the following “street-end beaches,” acquired by the Park District from the city in 1959: Columbia Beach Park 1040 W. Columbia; Hartigan Beach Park 1031 W. Albion; Howard Beach Park 7519 N. Eastlake; Jarvis Beach & Park 1208 W. Jarvis; Juneway Beach Park 7751 N. Eastlake; North Shore Beach Park 1040 W. North Shore; Rogers Beach Park 7800 N. Rogers; 773-262-8605.

Compiled by Hal Conick


CJE SeniorLife Volunteer opportunities include helping feed residents, visiting with the elderly, and possibly bringing your dog by for some pet therapy (pending CJE SeniorLife approval). Minimum time commitment varies for each activity. a3003 W. Touhy, 773-508-1064,

Cuentos Foundation This entirely volunteer-based program, which aims to “combat prejudice and discrimination through artistic and educational intergenerational projects and programs promoting mutual understanding,” is looking for volunteers in many different areas, including accounting, business planning, fund raising and special events planning and grant-writing. a 6321 North Clark, 773-761-2500,

Felines, Inc. This cageless, no-kill cat shelter houses over 100 cats on two floors. Volunteers help with upkeep, fund raising, special projects, hosting a monthly info table at local pet and grocery stores, and of course playing with the kitties. a 6379 N Paulina, 773-465-4132,

Good News Community Kitchen Begun as a ministry of the ministry of the Good News Community Church, GNCK claims to be the highest capacity community kitchen in the metro area, serving dinner 365 days a year to about 120 patrons a night from all over Chicago. They ask that anyone who volunteers be at least 12 years old and stay through the service, dinner, and clean-up. They also have a community organizing group you can volunteer for, Northside P.O.W.E.R.(People Organized to Work, Educate, and Restore), which works to address hunger and poverty issues in the neighborhood. a 7649 N. Paulina, 773-262-2297,

Lakeside Community Development Corporation This nonprofit, which works to create and preserve affordable housing, needs volunteers to help with rental housing advocacy, fund raising, workshops, community activities, and other special events. a 1652 W Wallen, 773-381-5253,

Misericordia At Misericordia, which houses and supports children and adults with developmental disabilities, the volunteer possibilities are endless: you can assist with everything from Sunday brunch to sports activities and even help chaperone the Misericordia contingent in the annual South Side Irish Parade. Misericordia asks most volunteers to give a minimum of two or three hours a week over a six-to-twelve-month term. a 6300 N. Ridge, 773-273-4161,

Red Door Animal Shelter This no-kill shelter handles rabbits as well as cats and dogs. Volunteers can help with care and feeding, laundry, the phones, errands, transportation, fostering, and adoptions. A commitment of at least one morning or evening per month is preferred. a2410 W Lunt, 773-764-2242,

Rogers Park Community Council The community council, whose goal is to “improve the quality of life in Rogers Park through social, civic, and educational initiatives,” is looking for volunteers to help with everything from writing articles for the Rogers Park 2000 newspaper to tutoring and mentoring middle schoolers in its Youth Intervention Program. a 1530 W. Morse, 773-338-7722,

Compiled by Hal Conick