Located in the Garfield Ridge neighborhood, Valley Forge Park totals 8.32 acres. The newly constructed field house, built in 2010, is a green building that has a 25% vegetated roof and features a Rainwater Harvesting System.
Indoor, there are two multi-purpose rooms, a gymnasium, and fitness center. A green feature of the park includes a Harvest Garden. Outside, the park offers a basketball/volley/tennis courts, softball fields, and horseshoe pits. Many of these spaces are available for rental including our gymnasium and multi-purpose rooms.
Park-goers can participate in seasonal sports, Moms, Pops, & Tots, gymnastics, preschool & playschool activities, yoga, aerobics. On the cultural side, Valley Forge offers tap & ballet. Nature programming that is offered includes Garden Buddies. After school programs are offered throughout the school year, and during the summer, youth can participate in the Chicago Park District’s popular six-week day camp.
In addition to programs, Valley Forge Park hosts fun special events throughout the year for the entire family, such as holiday-themed events.
In 1970, the Chicago Park District identified the under-served southwest side Clearing neighborhood for park development. That year, Clearing's population had peaked at 24,560, a 77% increase over a decade before. In 1972, the park district acquired a 6.46-acre property between West 59th Street and the Indiana Belt Railroad, using U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development grant funds. Preliminary park plans, developed in 1973, called for volleyball, tennis, basketball, horseshoe, and shuffleboard courts, an athletic field, a sandbox, and playground equipment. In 1976, the site was officially designated Valley Forge Park in recognition of the nation's Bi-Centennial. On the west bank of Pennsylvania's Schuylkill River, Valley Forge was the Revolutionary War encampment site of General George Washington and 11,000 troops beginning in December 1777. Having been defeated at nearby Brandywine and Germantown, the Continental Army endured an unusually harsh winter at Valley Forge, suffering bitter cold and near-starvation. After weeks of drilling by Baron Frederick von Steuben and an influx of money for supplies in the late spring, the Army emerged in June 1778 as a well-disciplined fighting force ready to press the Revolution forward. Around 1980, the park district brought in a double-wide trailer to be used as a fieldhouse. For many years, the westernmost portion of the property remained unimproved. The park district considered selling that section of the park, but had given up the idea by the early 1990s. Finally, in 1996, the west end of the park was improved with a soccer field. In 1998, the park district expanded the park to 7.74 acres by purchasing land to the east. Future plans call for a new state-of-the-art fieldhouse.