Winnetka is strategically located within an easy drive, or rail commute, of Chicago’s city center—with its significant business and cultural resources, as well as leisure time activities. The uniqueness of the community can especially be seen in the autumn, when the turning colors of the foliage become a photographer’s paradise.
A 2012 Chicago Tribune feature article on suburban life in Winnetka described the Village: “Winnetka’s downtown (actually three small districts anchored by Metra train stations), is a hub of rush-hour activity that doubles as a daytime destination for stay-at-home moms and retirees. Its beach-glass-and driftwood shops mimic those in New York’s Hamptons, sans the celebrities. Strip malls and big box stores are absent, while Village Hall supports the ‘shop local’ ideal…While Green Bay Road links the business districts, Sheridan Road is famous for old-money houses with backyards that open to the lake. Parallel to Green Bay is a berm that hides the rail line, which the village lowered in 1943 after dozens of death at railroad crossings.”
The Village occupies a land area of 3.81 square miles in Cook County, Illinois. The 2010 Census showed a total Village population of 12,187—down approximately 1.87% from the 2000 population of 12,419. According to the Census, there were 4,102 households in Winnetka in 2010 and the average household size was 2.97. Winnetka’s median household income is $207,955. Further community and demographic information can be found on the United States Census Bureau website.
The Winnetka Public Schools (Cook County School District 36) are locally governed by an elected School Board of seven citizens. For decades, Winnetka Public Schools have led the nation in progressive education and served as a model for educators who value the development of the whole child intellectually, socially, emotionally and physically. District 36 services approximately 2,000 kindergarten through eighth grade children in three elementary schools, one fifth/sixth grade center and one seventh/eighth grade middle school.
Upon completion of eighth grade, students attend New Trier Township High School, a nationally recognized high school for the quality of its academic programs. New Trier, founded in 1901, serves approximately 4,000 students and maintains a student to teacher ratio of 14:1. New Trier Township High School District 203 is comprehensive four-year high school with two campuses; a freshman only campus in Northfield, and a sophomore through senior campus at New Trier East in Winnetka. In addition to Winnetka, New Trier serves Glencoe, Kenilworth, Northfield, Wilmette, and portions of Glenview.
Winnetka is also home to the private North Shore Country Day School (with both elementary and secondary programs), as well as two religious affiliated elementary schools.
Well-developed and maintained recreational facilities, all of which are operated by the independent Winnetka Park District, abound in the Village. Four public beaches and a boat launch, numerous parks, athletic fields, an indoor tennis club, ice rink, public golf course and forest preserve areas can be enjoyed by residents and visitors alike.
The Winnetka-Northfield Public Library, operated as an independent district, has over 106,000 books, as well as video and audio items (including books on tape and compact discs), periodicals, reference materials, internet access and a direct computer link to 25 area libraries.