Olympia Fields, Illinois

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Olympia Fields, Illinois
Village
Village of Olympia Fields
Olympia Fields logo.jpg
Motto: Where People Make the Village
Location of Olympia Fields in Cook County, Illinois.
Location of Olympia Fields in Cook County, Illinois.
Location of Illinois in the United States
Location of Illinois in the United States
Coordinates: 41°31′6″N 87°41′34″W / 41.51833°N 87.69278°W / 41.51833; -87.69278Coordinates: 41°31′6″N 87°41′34″W / 41.51833°N 87.69278°W / 41.51833; -87.69278
Country United States
State Illinois
County Cook
Township Bloom and Rich
Founded 1927
Government
 • Type Village
 • Village President Sterling M. Burke
Area[1]
 • Total 2.94 sq mi (7.62 km2)
 • Land 2.94 sq mi (7.61 km2)
 • Water 0.00 sq mi (0.01 km2)
Population (2010)
 • Total 4,988
 • Estimate (2016)[2] 4,913
 • Density 1,671.66/sq mi (645.52/km2)
Time zone CST (UTC-6)
 • Summer (DST) CDT (UTC-5)
ZIP Code(s) 60461
Area code(s) 708
FIPS code 17-55938
Wikimedia Commons Olympia Fields, Illinois
Website www.olympia-fields.com

Olympia Fields is a village in Cook County, Illinois, United States. The population was 4,988 at the 2010 census.[3] The municipality grew up around the prestigious Olympia Fields Country Club, originally established in 1915.

Olympia Fields is noteworthy as one of the wealthiest and best educated "majority black" communities in the United States; the village used to be 100% white but forced busing and integration, plus "white flight" caused these demographic changes.[4] The village's ZIP Code (60461) is one of three with a majority African American population that ranks among the top five percent in the U.S. as a whole for median household income and for the share of adults with college degrees.[5]

History[edit]

The area that comprises the village today was once farmland managed by immigrant families during the 1830s. The Illinois Central Railroad began serving the area in the 1850s, which fostered population and economic growth during that era.

In 1893, the Columbian Exposition opened in Chicago, and southern Cook County became an increasingly popular retreat for busy Chicagoans. By 1913, the area's lush woodlands and rolling terrain convinced a group of investors led by Charles Beach to establish a golf course catering to Chicago's wealthy elite. Beach and his friend James Gardner developed a magnificent 72-hole golf course and country club, chartered in 1915 as Olympia Fields Country Club. Amos Alonzo Stagg, the famed football coach of the University of Chicago, became the Club's first president. The name "Olympia" was proposed by Stagg. The word "Fields" was added because it aptly described the young community's pastoral terrain.

In the early 20th century, golf and the resort atmosphere in the area south of Chicago because so popular that some families lived in canvas-covered "cottages" during the summer months, while others built more permanent homes on the western side of the railroad tracks beginning as early as 1919. The clubhouse, built in 1924, is on the National Register of Historic Places. The golf course is considered one of the finest in the nation. It was home to the 1928 and 2003 U.S. Open, the 1925 and 1961 PGA Championship, the 1997 Senior U.S. Open and the Western Open, the 2015 U.S. Amateur Championship, and the 2017 Women's PGA Championship.

The country club's founder, Charles Beach, organized the effort to incorporate the residential areas around the Country Club as a municipality, and in 1927, the Village of Olympia Fields was created with Beach as its first president. His home, built to reflect the design and character of the Country Club, still stands at the southwest corner of Kedzie Avenue and 203rd Street. Today, the grounds of the Country Club remain unincorporated, outside the jurisdiction of the Olympia Fields village government.

Olympia Fields has received the Tree City USA award for many years of having demonstrated a commitment to caring for and managing the village's public trees.[6]

Geography[edit]

Olympia Fields is located at 41°31′6″N 87°41′34″W / 41.51833°N 87.69278°W / 41.51833; -87.69278 (41.518290, -87.692744).[7]

According to the 2010 census, Olympia Fields has a total area of 2.944 square miles (7.62 km2), of which 2.94 square miles (7.61 km2) (or 99.86%) is land and 0.004 square miles (0.01 km2) (or 0.14%) is water.[8]

Demographics[edit]

Historical population
Census Pop.
1930 143
1940 101 −29.4%
1950 160 58.4%
1960 1,503 839.4%
1970 3,478 131.4%
1980 4,146 19.2%
1990 4,248 2.5%
2000 4,732 11.4%
2010 4,988 5.4%
Est. 2016 4,913 [2] −1.5%
U.S. Decennial Census[9]

As of the 2015 ACS 5-Year census estimate of 2015, there were 4,836 people, 1,860 households, and 1,339 families residing in the village.

There were 1,860 households, out of which 22.2% had children under the age of 18 living with them. The average household size was 2.57, and the average family size was 3.09.[3]

In the village, the population was spread out with 15.5% under the age of 18, 15.6% from 19 to 40, 39.2% from 41 to 64, and 29.8% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 53.3 years. [3][10]

Population (2015) Total 4,836
Density 1,665.3/sq mi
White 40.08%
African American 52.11%
Native American 0.04%
Asian 6.38%
Pacific Islander 0.02%
Hispanic/Latino 0.8%
Other 0.57%
Median Income $125,165
Median Age 53.3


Government[edit]

Olympia Fields is in Illinois's 2nd congressional district. The current president is Sterling M. Burke.

Transportation[edit]

The Village of Olympia Fields is located between Vollmer Road and US Route 30 (Lincoln Highway), two miles east of Interstate 57.

Two stations on the Metra Electric Main Line are located in Olympia Fields, providing easy access to the Chicago Loop and the University of Chicago. The Olympia Fields station is located on 203rd St., two blocks east of Kedzie Avenue, in the northern part of the village while the 211th Street (Lincoln Highway) station is in the southern part. Express trains from these stations reach the Randolph Street Station on Michigan Avenue in approximately 40 minutes. Both stations have daily parking facilities.

Education[edit]

While the majority of the village is served by Arcadia Elementary School in Olympia Fields, a small portion of the village is served by Western Avenue Elementary School in Flossmoor.

Although most of Olympia Fields' students attend Arcadia through fourth grade, school assignments get confusing from there. The Arcadia students head to Park Forest or Matteson for middle school, then back to Olympia Fields for high school. Students from "Graymoor" and "The Greens" neighborhoods go to school in Flossmoor. The "Wysteria" neighborhood students study in Chicago Heights.[11]

Students from Olympia Fields attend six different public school districts: Elementary Districts 161, 162 and 170 and High School Districts 206, 227 and 233.[12]

  • Flossmoor School District 161 (Western Avenue Elementary School)
  • Flossmoor School District 161 (Parker Junior High School)
  • Homewood-Flossmoor School District 233 (Homewood-Flossmoor High School). Homewood-Flossmoor High School is a three-time recipient of the U.S. Department of Education's Blue Ribbon Award for excellence. HF also owns WHFH 88.5, the highest powered high school radio station with 1,500 watts.
  • Matteson School District 162
  • Rich Township High School District 227 (Rich Central High School)
  • School District 170 (Kennedy School)
  • Bloom Township High School District 206 (Bloom High School)

[13]

Nearby Private Schools

  • Marian Catholic High School is a co-educational, college preparatory 9-12 secondary school in Chicago Heights, Illinois. It is located in the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Chicago
  • Infant Jesus of Prague School is a co-educational, Roman Catholic K-8 school operated by the Infant Jesus of Prague Parish in Flossmoor. IJP, as the school is known, is a two-time winner of the U.S. Department of Education's Blue Ribbon Award.
  • Church of the Nazarene Nursery School and Kindergarten is a co-educational, Christian nursery school and kindergarten serving children from ages six weeks to six years during the normal school year and up to the age of twelve years during the summer program.

Notable people[edit]

References[edit]

External links[edit]