Ellis (Samuel) Park

  • 707 E. 37th St.   Chicago, Illinois 60653 [View Map]
  • Fieldhouse Hours:
  • Park Hours:
  • Park Supervisor: Monique Scott
  • Park Phone: (773) 285-7099

Located in the Douglas Community, Ellis Park totals 9.86 acres.  Outdoor features include tennis courts, athletic fields for football or soccer and a soft-surface playground.   In 2015 the District broke ground to build a new Fieldhouse at Ellis.   Opened in the summer of 2016 The Arts and Recreation Center at Ellis Park, located at 3520 S. Cottage Grove Avenue, is a $17 million state-of-the-art facility providing 32,000 square feet that makes available a 5-lane competitive pool, gymnasium, fitness center, multi-purpose arts and community spaces, rooftop terrace, locker rooms and administrative space.  The Arts and Recreation Center at Ellis Park will be operated by the Chicago Parks District and provide afterschool and summer youth programming, family activities, arts and cultural offerings, health and wellness programming and community events for residents of all ages. 

Parking/Directions

For directions using public transportation visit www.transitchicago.com.

History

One of Chicago’s oldest green spaces, Ellis Park honors Samuel Ellis for whom Ellis Avenue is also named. Having arrived in Chicago from Massachusetts in 1831, Samuel Ellis (1790 - 1856) helped defend Chicago during the 1832 Black Hawk War. Ellis purchased more than 135 acres of South Side lakefront property. He owned and ran the Ellis Inn, farmed the land, and served as the area’s milkman. In 1855, Ellis subdivided his land holdings between 31st and 39th Streets, from Lake Michigan to South Park Boulevard (now Martin Luther King Drive), and donated a wedge-shaped parcel to the city for use as a public park. The area surrounding Ellis Park, known as the Oakland community, had first developed as a fashionable neighborhood, fell into decline at the turn of the twentieth century. At that time, as wealthy residents move out, their homes were divided into apartments and rooming houses. Ellis Park had also been impacted. Its landscape was carved up by adjacent residents who extended sidewalks from their homes and planted trees and shrubs on either side. A decaying bandstand added to the sense of disorder. In the early 1900s, the Special Park Commission reclaimed Ellis Park from the encroaching property owners. Acclaimed landscape architect Jens Jensen (1860- 1951), then serving as a Special Park Commission member, redesigned the 3-acre park. His 1906 plan included two ornamental fountains and a circular, tree-edged lawn. Decades later, the surrounding neighborhood changed again, and the federal government erected the Ida B. Wells housing project. To accommodate the area’s larger population, the city’s Bureau of Parks and Recreation (successor to the Special Park Commission) installed two new wading pools which drew more than 14,000 children the first summer. The City of Chicago transferred Ellis Park to the Chicago Park District in 1959. Several years later, the park district purchased additional land east, west, and north of the original park, more than tripling its size. Improvements to the enlarged park included ball fields, tennis courts, as well as trees, lawns, and walkways. Over the years, the neighborhood surrounding Ellis Park continued to change. The Chicago Housing Authority demolished the Ida B. Wells and Madden Park Homes. Today, CHA provides a number of scattered site rental apartments in the neighborhood. For years, the community lacked swimming facilities and other amenities. In 2015, ground was broken in Ellis Park for a state-of-the-art field house providing the community with a greatly needed recreational and cultural facility. The Chicago Park District worked with the City of Chicago, Chicago Public Schools, Chicago Housing Authority and its partner The Community Builders, Inc. (TCB) to develop the new center. Designed by Booth Hansen and Nia Architects, the 32,000-square foot two story building reflects a contemporary aesthetic. Composed of precast concrete, metal framing, and glass fiber reinforced concrete wall panels, the building provides an indoor swimming pool; full-sized gymnasium; multi-purpose club rooms for art, education, performance, meetings and exercise; a fitness center with weight and strength training equipment; 2nd level outdoor patio space with catering kitchen for Park and special events and fully equipped and accessible men’s, women’s and family locker rooms. The facility was completed and opened to the public in the summer of 2016.
Ellis Diamond Baseball

Ellis Diamond Baseball

Location Notes: 707 E. 37th St.

Ellis Basketball

Ellis Basketball

Location Notes: 707 E. 37th St.

Ellis Football/Soccer Field

Ellis Football/Soccer Field

Location Notes: 707 E. 37th St.

Descriptors: Grass

Ellis Playground

Ellis PlaygroundAccessible

Descriptors: Rubberized Surface

Ellis Tennis Court

Ellis Tennis Court

Location Notes: 707 E. 37th St.

Events


PLEASE NOTE:  Registration for Ellis Park summer programs is ongoing.  Register online now, as well as in-person at Mandrake Park, 3858 S. Cottage Grove Avenue.  Click on the Day Camp program link below to register now.
 

Summer Programs

The standard 6-week day camp runs July 5 - August 12. Specialty camp dates vary.  Most other programs start the week of June 20 and run through the week of August 22. Click on the program name links below to register now. Registration is on-going while spots are available. 

  

 

Fall Programs

Fall programs start the week of September 19 and run through the week of November 21.  View programs online & create your wish list beginning Monday, August 1.  Registration dates for our park are:

  • Online registration begins on Tuesday, August 16, 2016 at 9:00am.
  • In-person registration begins on Saturday, August 20, 2016.

Click on the program name links below for program descriptions, availability information and to register online now (if available).

Name Number Type Category Ages Gender Dates Fee
Adult Swim at Ellis 161359OpenAquatics - Open18 and upCoed2016/06/20 23:15From June 20, 2016 to August 26, 2016
Each Monday from 6:15pm to 7:15pm
Each Wednesday from 6:15pm to 7:15pm
Each Friday from 6:15pm to 7:15pm
$0
Aquatic Exercise II - Low Impact at Ellis 161520InstructionAquatics - Fitness18 and upCoed2016/06/21 23:15From June 21, 2016 to August 23, 2016
Each Tuesday from 6:15pm to 7:15pm
$30.00
Aquatic Exercise II - Low Impact at Ellis 161521InstructionAquatics - Fitness18 and upCoed2016/06/23 23:15From June 23, 2016 to August 25, 2016
Each Thursday from 6:15pm to 7:15pm
$30.00
Day Camp at Ellis 159795CampsCamps - General InterestAt least 8 but less than 13Coed2016/07/05 15:00From July 5, 2016 to August 12, 2016
Each Monday from 10am to 4pm
Each Tuesday from 10am to 4pm
Each Wednesday from 10am to 4pm
Each Thursday from 10am to 4pm
Each Friday from 10am to 4pm
$315.00
Day Camp at Ellis 160106CampsCamps - General InterestAt least 6 but less than 8Coed2016/07/05 15:00From July 5, 2016 to August 12, 2016
Each Monday from 10am to 4pm
Each Tuesday from 10am to 4pm
Each Wednesday from 10am to 4pm
Each Thursday from 10am to 4pm
Each Friday from 10am to 4pm
$315.00
Early Bird Camp at Ellis 159796CampsCamps - General InterestAt least 6 but less than 13Coed2016/07/05 13:00From July 5, 2016 to August 12, 2016
Each Monday from 8am to 10am
Each Tuesday from 8am to 10am
Each Wednesday from 8am to 10am
Each Thursday from 8am to 10am
Each Friday from 8am to 10am
$75.00
Extended Camp at Ellis 159797CampsCamps - General InterestAt least 6 but less than 13Coed2016/07/05 21:00From July 5, 2016 to August 12, 2016
Each Monday from 4pm to 6pm
Each Tuesday from 4pm to 6pm
Each Wednesday from 4pm to 6pm
Each Thursday from 4pm to 6pm
Each Friday from 4pm to 6pm
$75.00
Family Swim at Ellis 161519OpenAquatics - OpenLess than 13Coed2016/06/25 19:30From June 25, 2016 to August 27, 2016
Each Saturday from 2:30pm to 4pm
$0
Lap Swim at Ellis 161502OpenAquatics - Open18 and upCoed2016/06/20 22:15From June 20, 2016 to August 27, 2016
Each Monday from 5:15pm to 6:15pm
Each Friday from 5:15pm to 6:15pm
Each Saturday from 9am to 10am
$40.00
Learn to Swim at Ellis 161496InstructionAquatics - LessonsAt least 6 but less than 13Coed2016/06/21 22:15From June 21, 2016 to August 23, 2016
Each Tuesday from 5:15pm to 6:15pm
$30.00
Learn to Swim at Ellis 161497InstructionAquatics - LessonsAt least 6 but less than 13Coed2016/06/23 22:15From June 23, 2016 to August 25, 2016
Each Thursday from 5:15pm to 6:15pm
$30.00
Learn to Swim at Ellis 161498InstructionAquatics - LessonsAt least 6 but less than 13Coed2016/06/25 16:00From June 25, 2016 to August 27, 2016
Each Saturday from 11am to Noon
$30.00
Senior Swim at Ellis 161358OpenAquatics - Open60 and upCoed2016/06/21 16:00From June 21, 2016 to August 25, 2016
Each Tuesday from 11am to Noon
Each Thursday from 11am to Noon
$0
TEAM Sports at Ellis 161518InstructionAquatics - SpecializedAt least 6 but less than 18Coed2016/06/22 22:15From June 22, 2016 to August 24, 2016
Each Wednesday from 5:15pm to 6:15pm
$28.00
Teen Swim at Ellis 161361OpenAquatics - OpenAt least 13 but less than 18Coed2016/06/20 21:00From June 21, 2016 to August 27, 2016
Each Monday from 4pm to 5pm
Each Tuesday from 4pm to 5pm
Each Wednesday from 4pm to 5pm
Each Thursday from 4pm to 5pm
Each Friday from 4pm to 5pm
Each Saturday from Noon to 1pm
Except the following dates:
Tuesday, June 21, 2016
Tuesday, June 28, 2016
Tuesday, July 5, 2016
Tuesday, July 12, 2016
Tuesday, July 19, 2016
Thursday, June 23, 2016
Thursday, June 30, 2016
Thursday, July 7, 2016
Thursday, July 14, 2016
Monday, June 27, 2016
Monday, July 4, 2016
Monday, July 11, 2016
Monday, July 18, 2016
Wednesday, June 22, 2016
Wednesday, June 29, 2016
Wednesday, July 6, 2016
Wednesday, July 13, 2016
Wednesday, July 20, 2016
Friday, June 24, 2016
Friday, July 1, 2016
Friday, July 8, 2016
Friday, July 15, 2016
From June 20, 2016 to July 4, 2016
Each Monday from 1pm to 2pm
Each Wednesday from 1pm to 2pm
Each Friday from 1pm to 2pm
$0
Teen Swim at Ellis 161361OpenAquatics - OpenAt least 13 but less than 18Coed2016/06/20 21:00From June 21, 2016 to August 27, 2016
Each Monday from 4pm to 5pm
Each Tuesday from 4pm to 5pm
Each Wednesday from 4pm to 5pm
Each Thursday from 4pm to 5pm
Each Friday from 4pm to 5pm
Each Saturday from Noon to 1pm
Except the following dates:
Tuesday, June 21, 2016
Tuesday, June 28, 2016
Tuesday, July 5, 2016
Tuesday, July 12, 2016
Tuesday, July 19, 2016
Thursday, June 23, 2016
Thursday, June 30, 2016
Thursday, July 7, 2016
Thursday, July 14, 2016
Monday, June 27, 2016
Monday, July 4, 2016
Monday, July 11, 2016
Monday, July 18, 2016
Wednesday, June 22, 2016
Wednesday, June 29, 2016
Wednesday, July 6, 2016
Wednesday, July 13, 2016
Wednesday, July 20, 2016
Friday, June 24, 2016
Friday, July 1, 2016
Friday, July 8, 2016
Friday, July 15, 2016
From June 20, 2016 to July 4, 2016
Each Monday from 1pm to 2pm
Each Wednesday from 1pm to 2pm
Each Friday from 1pm to 2pm
$0
Tiny Tot Swim - Level I at Ellis 161501InstructionAquatics - LessonsAt least but less than 3y 1m Coed2016/06/25 15:00From June 25, 2016 to August 27, 2016
Each Saturday from 10am to 11am
$34.00
Youth Swim at Ellis 161360OpenAquatics - OpenAt least 6 but less than 13Coed2016/06/20 20:00From June 20, 2016 to August 26, 2016
Each Monday from 3pm to 4pm
Each Tuesday from 3pm to 4pm
Each Wednesday from 3pm to 4pm
Each Thursday from 3pm to 4pm
Each Friday from 3pm to 4pm
Each Saturday from 1pm to 2pm
Except the following dates:
Monday, June 20, 2016
Monday, June 27, 2016
Monday, July 4, 2016
Monday, July 11, 2016
Monday, July 18, 2016
Tuesday, June 21, 2016
Tuesday, June 28, 2016
Tuesday, July 5, 2016
Tuesday, July 12, 2016
Tuesday, July 19, 2016
Wednesday, June 22, 2016
Wednesday, June 29, 2016
Wednesday, July 6, 2016
Wednesday, July 13, 2016
Wednesday, July 20, 2016
Thursday, June 23, 2016
Thursday, June 30, 2016
Thursday, July 7, 2016
Thursday, July 14, 2016
Friday, June 24, 2016
Friday, July 1, 2016
Friday, July 8, 2016
Friday, July 15, 2016
$0

Documents

There are no documents available.

Photos & Videos

There are no photos or videos available.

Reviews

Description

Located in the Douglas Community, Ellis Park totals 9.86 acres.  Outdoor features include tennis courts, athletic fields for football or soccer and a soft-surface playground.   In 2015 the District broke ground to build a new Fieldhouse at Ellis.   Opened in the summer of 2016 The Arts and Recreation Center at Ellis Park, located at 3520 S. Cottage Grove Avenue, is a $17 million state-of-the-art facility providing 32,000 square feet that makes available a 5-lane competitive pool, gymnasium, fitness center, multi-purpose arts and community spaces, rooftop terrace, locker rooms and administrative space.  The Arts and Recreation Center at Ellis Park will be operated by the Chicago Parks District and provide afterschool and summer youth programming, family activities, arts and cultural offerings, health and wellness programming and community events for residents of all ages. 

For directions using public transportation visit www.transitchicago.com.

One of Chicago’s oldest green spaces, Ellis Park honors Samuel Ellis for whom Ellis Avenue is also named. Having arrived in Chicago from Massachusetts in 1831, Samuel Ellis (1790 - 1856) helped defend Chicago during the 1832 Black Hawk War. Ellis purchased more than 135 acres of South Side lakefront property. He owned and ran the Ellis Inn, farmed the land, and served as the area’s milkman. In 1855, Ellis subdivided his land holdings between 31st and 39th Streets, from Lake Michigan to South Park Boulevard (now Martin Luther King Drive), and donated a wedge-shaped parcel to the city for use as a public park. The area surrounding Ellis Park, known as the Oakland community, had first developed as a fashionable neighborhood, fell into decline at the turn of the twentieth century. At that time, as wealthy residents move out, their homes were divided into apartments and rooming houses. Ellis Park had also been impacted. Its landscape was carved up by adjacent residents who extended sidewalks from their homes and planted trees and shrubs on either side. A decaying bandstand added to the sense of disorder. In the early 1900s, the Special Park Commission reclaimed Ellis Park from the encroaching property owners. Acclaimed landscape architect Jens Jensen (1860- 1951), then serving as a Special Park Commission member, redesigned the 3-acre park. His 1906 plan included two ornamental fountains and a circular, tree-edged lawn. Decades later, the surrounding neighborhood changed again, and the federal government erected the Ida B. Wells housing project. To accommodate the area’s larger population, the city’s Bureau of Parks and Recreation (successor to the Special Park Commission) installed two new wading pools which drew more than 14,000 children the first summer. The City of Chicago transferred Ellis Park to the Chicago Park District in 1959. Several years later, the park district purchased additional land east, west, and north of the original park, more than tripling its size. Improvements to the enlarged park included ball fields, tennis courts, as well as trees, lawns, and walkways. Over the years, the neighborhood surrounding Ellis Park continued to change. The Chicago Housing Authority demolished the Ida B. Wells and Madden Park Homes. Today, CHA provides a number of scattered site rental apartments in the neighborhood. For years, the community lacked swimming facilities and other amenities. In 2015, ground was broken in Ellis Park for a state-of-the-art field house providing the community with a greatly needed recreational and cultural facility. The Chicago Park District worked with the City of Chicago, Chicago Public Schools, Chicago Housing Authority and its partner The Community Builders, Inc. (TCB) to develop the new center. Designed by Booth Hansen and Nia Architects, the 32,000-square foot two story building reflects a contemporary aesthetic. Composed of precast concrete, metal framing, and glass fiber reinforced concrete wall panels, the building provides an indoor swimming pool; full-sized gymnasium; multi-purpose club rooms for art, education, performance, meetings and exercise; a fitness center with weight and strength training equipment; 2nd level outdoor patio space with catering kitchen for Park and special events and fully equipped and accessible men’s, women’s and family locker rooms. The facility was completed and opened to the public in the summer of 2016.