NFT Chicago Bronzeville


Once the glorious heart of Chicago's African-American community, Bronzeville is in the midst of an impressive 21st century urban renewal. Decades of poverty, crime, empty lots and dilapidated housing projects have given way to yuppie transplants, restored greystones, and glitzy condos.

Attractions range from Jokes & Notes and the Harold Washington Cultural Center to the Steelelife Gallery, showcasing contemporary multicultural art. Sensual Steps offers sleek footwear during the day and frequent evening events.


On Our Radar:

Posted By:  Tina Fakhrid-Deen
Photo:  Tina Fakhrid-Deen

All coffeehouses are not created equal. Developing permanent roots like all of the new condos around it, BCH is a tranquil watering hole for Bronzeville’s grown and sexy. From the lusciously thick fruit smoothies and thirty-seven tempting tea flavors to the delectably moist JR’s Bakery pastries, the strong fair trade brew is just a teaser. Good vibes and soft, soulful music flow through like feng shui. With a book exchange, kid’s section, backyard patio, gorgeous artwork, and free monthly jazz and comedy acts (with free beer and BYOB), there’s something to entice everyone. Go get you some.

Posted By:  Jennifer Campbell
Photo:  Jennifer Campbell

In the early 1900s, Chicago was the home of the blues. Louis Armstrong lived here. Bo Didley and Muddy Waters recorded here. The area boasted writer Richard Wright and poet Gwendolyn Brooks. The Spoken Word, located in the 47th Avenue Marketplace Complex, is once again reaching for those intellectual and cultural heights. The homey café, with its wooden oors, fireplace, and comfortable seating, offers locals a performance stage, while the courteous staff makes patrons feel right at home. The cafe draws a crowd that appreciates smooth jazz and blues served with their coffee; Blues Night on Thursday features live music, ashback Friday is a retro dance party where the DJs spin old school, hip hop, or house music, and Saturday is open mike/spoken word night. There is a cover charge of $10 Thursday, Friday, and Saturday nights. The cafe is also available for private parties.

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Restaurants (4)
Nightlife (1)
Shopping (5)
Landmarks (11)