August 19, 2008

Wilson Avenue YMCA, 1725 Wilson Ave, Chicago

Wilson Avenue Dept. Chicago Y.M.C.A., 1725 Wilson Avenue

7 comments:

Hollywood Beach said...

Truly a piece of history. These types of urban YMCA's provided housing opportunities for single adult males - a valuable, affordable, and vanishing commodity both in Chicago and across the nation. The fate of the Ravenswood YMCA & Residence is sadly similar to that of the Oak Park YMCA, LaGrange YMCA, Division Street YMCA, Roseland YMCA, Washington Park YMCA, Wabash YMCA, Homan YMCA, Loop YMCA and others.
It is truly regratable that the YMCA organization is absondoning their housing mission and instead focusing on fitness centers aimed at up-scale or well-off community residents. As a not-for-profit, this places them in direct competition against taxable commercial ventures such as Bally's, Crunch, XSport, Lakeshore, East Bank, Golds, Lincoln Park AC and others.

Bob Leffingwell said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Bob Leffingwell said...

It was the ONLY place to go swimming indoors all year before the city built the indoor pool at Welles Park. It was also a room to stay at when your old lady kicked you out of the house.

bill Matteson said...

there were 2 swimming pools in the Uptown area that had swimming year around One was at the Sovereign Hotel and the other at the New Lawrence.........
The swimming pool at the Wilson Ave YMCA was a dangerous place for young boys...we swam in the nude and the pool area was run by perverts,,,I know that in this day and age no one wants to hear that but they were there and ta the Boys Club

bill Matteson said...

there were 2 swimming pools in the Uptown area that had swimming year around One was at the Sovereign Hotel and the other at the New Lawrence.........
The swimming pool at the Wilson Ave YMCA was a dangerous place for young boys...we swam in the nude and the pool area was run by perverts,,,I know that in this day and age no one wants to hear that but they were there and ta the Boys Club

Robert Leffingwell said...

The problem with the other pools is that they were really pricey

Pat Cookingham said...

I have very fond memories of the LaGrange YMCA. My first job was at this Y and to this day I am so thankful I was mentored by it’s wonderful staff. We had a family membership and I started to work in 1965-66 in the youth section, locker room, gym and in the pool guarding and teaching lessons. Elle Donecke(sp?), Barabara Winters, Bob Brown and Rita Victor were the greatest staff under the directions of Chuck Stokes Excecutive Dir. The facility was amazing with its gyms, pool, health clubs cafeteria and 200+ resident rooms. There was a steady phasing out of the resident use all during my time working there until they were completely shut down as the YMCA focused in a new direction. I had 10+ years at this great building and job which I shall never forget.

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