The North Shore Village of Wilmette (population just over 27,000) is approximately 14 miles north of downtown Chicago. It's bordered on the south by Evanston and Skokie, on the west by Glenview, on the north by Kenilworth and Winnetka.
Wilmette is the fifth most affluent North Shore suburb, trailing Kenilworth, Winnetka, Glencoe and Lake Forest. The more affluent parts of Wilmette are east of Green Bay Rd and in the Indian Hill Estates area north of Lake. West Wilmette is more affordable, lending the village a surprising level of economic diversity.
Wilmette is a socially liberal, welcoming community. Educational levels are uniformly high, with nearly 40% of over-25 adults having earned a college degree, and a similar percentage having achieved a graduate degree.
Wilmette values children and education very highly, and many of its families have moved here specifically for the excellent public and private schools.
Public amenities, services, civic organizations
Wilmette has a rich array of public amenities, including an outstanding park system, beautiful public beaches, a gorgeous harbor, a public golf course, and an excellent public library. The village has a long tradition of citizen involvement in public life and boasts a wide range of charitable and civic organizations and clubs.
Wilmette has a variety of churches and temples, many of them housed in architecturally significant buildings inter-mixed with residences. It's also home to the Baha'i House of Worship, which draws visitors from around the world.
Wilmette's housing stock is predominantly owner-occupied detached single-family homes, typically priced between $500,000 and $3 million, with a limited selection above and below that range. There are also small condominium and townhome developments in scattered pockets throughout the village.
The character of the housing stock varies widely by neighborhood, reflecting the different periods during which various parts of Wilmette were developed.
Wilmette is a mature community. New construction, as a result, consists mainly of single-family teardowns and the occasional infill low-rise condo development.
The Edens Expressway (I-94) is near the western border of Wilmette, a few minutes from any part of Wilmette. Travel time to downtown Chicago or O'Hare Airport is typically a half-hour.
Shopping, dining and nightlife
There is no nightlife to speak of in Wilmette.
Dining options tend toward the family-centric, and include the famed Walker Bros Original Pancake House, C.J. Arthur's, the Ridgeview Grill, Panera and the newer and more urbane Fuel.
The historic Plaza del Lago in East Wilmette is anchored by a Crate and Barrel and a Jewel grocery, and hosts a number of specialty shops and services.
Westfield Old Orchard shopping center, just south of Wilmette, has over 170 shops ranging from Bloomingdale's, Nordstrom's, and Macy's to upscale boutiques and the North Shore teenager's must-have haunt, a Tiffany store.
Public School District 39 serves most of Wilmette. Students in a small portion of western Wilmette attend Avoca District 37 schools. All of Wilmette is within the New Trier Township High School District.
A number of private pre-school, elementary and high schools lie within Wilmette's borders.