Summer is officially here, and that means it’s time to hit the streets with your kids in tow and explore some of the city’s best neighborhoods. If you are looking for something to do with the kids, head north to Andersonville: “A quaint village in the heart of a world class city.” Andersonville was founded by Swedish immigrants and remains a thriving Swedish community with plenty to offer families that visit or choose to make it their home.

(credit: Ann

A Fantasy Breakfast

Ann Sather
5207 N. Clark St.
Mon.–Fri. 7 a.m.–2 p.m.
Sat. & Sun. 7 a.m.–4 p.m.
(773) 271-6677

Start your day off with a delicious breakfast at Ann Sather. Famous for their “French Toast Fantasy,” as endorsed by celebrity chef Rachel Ray, you can’t go wrong with just about anything on the menu. The Swedish pancakes are authentically delicious, but be sure to get the cinnamon rolls and experience their warm, buttery sweetness that will insist you eat every last crumb. The kitchen is flexible and willing to accommodate special requests for kids. Ordering just one (giant) buttermilk pancake is allowed!


Fun in Sweden

Swedish American Museum
5211 N. Clark St.
Mon.-Fri. 10 a.m.–4 p.m.
Sat. & Sun.: 11 a.m. – 4 p.m.
$4 adults,
$3 children/students/seniors
Museum members and children under one are free
Free admission: second Tuesday of every month.
(773) 728-8111

Right next door is the Swedish American Museum. Pop-in for an hour or so and let the kids pretend they are Swedish immigrants in the Brunk Children’s Museum of Immigration, while they get rid of those sitting-still-in-the-restaurant jitters.


For the love of books

Women and Children First
5233 N. Clark Street
Mon.-Tues. 11 a.m.–7 p.m.
Wed.–Fri. 11 a.m.-9 p.m.
Sat. 10 a.m.-7,p.m.
Sun. 11 a.m.–6 p.m.
(773) 769-9299

Next, take a walk up Clark Street and stop in at the “Women and Children First” bookstore for some book browsing in their lovely kids section, complete with toys and a play-house. And if you plan it right, story time is every Wednesday morning from 10:30-11:00 a.m. where store co-owner Linda Bubon reads and performs five or more stories. Story time is free and targeted to two to five-year-olds.

(credit: Spencer Platt/Getty Images)

Toys, Toys, Toys!

Toys et cetera
5311 N. Clark Street
Mon.–Fri. 9:30 a.m.-7 p.m.
Sat. 9:30 a.m.-6 p.m.
Sun. 11 a.m.-5 p.m.
(773) 769-5311

Create it, make it, take it! Classes are $5 and advance registration is recommended.

Continue walking north on Clark Street and let your kids revel in a store full of great toys. Or plan to attend a: Create it, Make it, Take it! Class. These 2-hour classes for children are scheduled throughout the summer. In the beautiful outdoor garden, children will create arts and crafts type projects like sand art and sun catchers, have a tattoo party, and work in a science lab. Some activities are all ages, others are age-specific.

(credit: Heather Earnhart)

Cool Treats

George’s Ice Cream & Sweets
5306 N. Clark Street
Mon.–Thurs. 12 p.m.–10 a.m.
Fri. 12 p.m.-11 p.m.
Sat. 11 a.m.–11 p.m.
Sun. 11 a.m.–10 p.m.
(773) 271-7600

To make your kids really happy, take them from the toy store straight across the street to George’s Ice Cream & Sweets. George’s serves ice cream from Wisconsin’s Chocolate Shoppe and features flavors like Zanzibar Chocolate, Fat Elvis, and the new Zoreo.

(credit: Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

Fresh From the Farm

Andersonville Farmer’s Market
Between Clark and Ashland
Every Wednesday
June 22-September 7: 3:00 p.m.-8:00 p.m.
September 14-October 19: 3:00 p.m.-7:00 p.m.

Before heading home, stop by the farmer’s market to pick-up your fresh fruits and veggies for the week.

Heather Earnhart is a free-lance musician living with her husband and two kids in the Uptown neighborhood of Chicago. Read more of her work on the ChiTown Parent Blog.