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11 miles directly north of the Loop, the Evanston/Skokie area is one of the most culturally oriented communities on the North Shore. This diverse community has everything a suburban dweller could want. Its lakeside location, convenient shopping, and proximity to Chicago all add to its diverse population.

Evanston has preserved much of its historical charm through such significant buildings as the Gross Point Lighthouse and the Charles Gates Dawes House. The village is home to numerous theater groups, a symphony orchestra, five museums and a number of art galleries and centers. Growth and urbanization have taken their toll on Evanston's conservative character, a leftover (some say) of an amendment to Northwestern University charter, passed back in 1853 that prohibited the sale of liquor within four miles of Northwestern University. This amendment had a profound and continuing effect on the city, keeping it 'dry' until the 1970s. As a result, Evanston was a staunch supporter of the prohibition movement, and in 1874, the Women's Christian Temperance Union was founded here.

Skokie is located immediately to the west of Evanston, and is popular with residents interested in a quick trip into the city. Skokie's population also appreciates the diverse, family-oriented, lifestyle that their town offers. The community has 800 service businesses and 1,100 retail stores, generating more than $600 million in retail sales annually. This revenue, along with industry tax dollars, helps to keep property taxes low. Surveys have indicated that Skokie residents have one of the three lowest tax bills of all the greater Chicago communities. The Skokie Park District has nearly 500 programs at its community centers, and facilities include nicely maintained swimming pools, parks, playgrounds, tennis courts and an indoor ice skating facility. As successful cities unto themselves, Evanston and Skokie are wonderful places to visit, if you haven't been fortunate enough to live and raise a family in them.
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