Margaret Donahue Park Playground and Splash Pad
1230 W. School Street, Chicago, IL 60657
The Chicago Cubs helped develop an awesome new playground.
If you're looking for a sparkly new, totally safe, highly engaging playground and splash pad park, Margaret Donahue Park is a must-see! This new neighborhood gem is the $1.2 million dollar project of the City of Chicago, the Chicago Park District, Chicago Land Trust and The Chicago Cubs. The 1/2 acre space is on the quiet, secluded School Street in the Lakeview area. This is Cubs territory (though all sports teams fans are welcome - we went donning our Sox hats, so...)!
Named for Margaret Donahue, one of the nation's first female executives in major league baseball, this park shines in all its newness and glory. There's a mini baseball field (open field for running, scooting, ball playing, etc.) with padded flooring, a splash pad, plenty of shaded tables for snacks, a mini house for tot snacks and chatting. The rubber flooring throughout the playground has mounds and hills to summit and scoot down. There's a little kid structure with plenty of slides, tunnels, steps and engaging things to press, push and touch - all nice and shaded too! The main structure is designed as a mini-Chicago with the John Hancock and Sears (now Willis) Towers. There are slides and poles and bridges and ramps and endless fun. The park also has lots of swings. This is another park with good site lines, so you don't have to worry too much about where you're standing because most spots are fairly visible.
The newness (& big budget) of this park has given it a lot of buzz in the city. It's often busy! If you're lucky enough to come on a weekday morning, come early. The first time we went, we went just after a small rain shower (bring a towel to wipe downswings, slides and surfaces) and we got the whole place virtually to ourselves. This park is a little outside our neighborhood but it's definitely a destination park for us- we got lucky and scored a free parking spot adjacent to the park's gate!