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Things to do in Back of The Yards

Have you ever wondered why the Chicago Bulls’ jersey is red? That’s because Chicago was once the meatpacking capital of the world at one point nearly 100 years ago with the Union Stock Yards. Today, the meatpacking yards are no more, but the neighborhood Back of The Yards is named for its location right on the former site. Now, only the gate of the original yards remains. At the same time, it’s a historical destination in that regard. Here are things to do when in Chicago’s Back of The Yards.

Union Stockyards Gate

The original entrance to the Union Stockyards is the only remnant of the meatpacking operation today. This arching gate has been around since 1875 and is one of Chicago’s oldest landmarks. The cow head in the center is an excellent touch. In the small park area, there is also a memorial to the 1910 fire at the Stockyards. Trace the origins of the Chicago Bulls’ team identity right here.

Union Stockyards Gate

W Exchange Ave and S Peoria St,

Chicago, IL

60609

Sherman Park

The architect who designed the Union Stockyard Gates also had a hand in creating Sherman Park. In fact, the park is named after his father, who was also the founder of the Stockyards itself. Much like the Gate, Sherman Park is also a historic landmark. The park is known for its murals on the fieldhouse and gyms. A creek also circles a small island that can be accessed by a bridge. Every field sport can be played here.

Sherman Park

1301 W 52nd St,

Chicago, IL

60609

Cornell Square Park

Here is another park in Back of The Yards that is at least 100 years old. All these parks were created so the booming immigrant population would have such amenities. This park was named after the founder of Cornell University and had a Beaux-Arts-styled fieldhouse. The playground and fields are new, but the fieldhouses’ facilities like the pool were original features.

Cornell Square Park

1809 W 50th St

Chicago, IL

60609

Davis Square Park

All the parks we’ve been looking at are ones designed by the Burnham company, which also owned the Union Stockyards. Davis Square Park is no exception. The original fieldhouse is strikingly similar to the one at Cornell and Sherman, in fact. This park, over a century old, is named after Nathan Smith Davis, one of the founders of the American Medical Association. This park features a baseball diamond and swimming pool.

Davis Square Park

4430 S Marshfield Ave,

Chicago, IL

60609