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Best Specialty Gym/Workouts on the North Shore

working outNo more excuses. Whether you made it your New Year’s resolution or not, we could all benefit from a solid fitness routine. The hard part is finding the right training program that will keep you engaged and motivated. If you are intimidated by or dislike the mega gym scene, then this list is for you.

Definition Fitness
522 Lincoln Ave, Winnetka, 847-271-4077

A small, unintimidating neighborhood gym that provides semi-personal workouts at reasonable prices. Definition Fitness utilizes innovative exercises that focus on core and functional training and provides tailored workouts for each of their clients’ fitness goal and physical abilities. Patrons love the professional and friendly trainers, flexibility of schedule and community atmosphere.

Spynergy Inc
813 Oak St., Winnetka, 847-441-8024

Spynergy is a dedicated indoor cycling studio that provides energizing workouts set to inspiring music in an intimate setting. Owned by twin sisters with a cult-like following, it’s a fantastic way to improve cardiovascular fitness, lose weight and increase your energy. More than 30 classes are offered each week which are suitable for all ages and fitness levels. Newbies don’t fret. They offer free, new rider consultations or simply arrive a few minutes early and one of their friendly instructors will help get you set up.

Fit Girl Studio
1642 Maple Ave., Evanston, 847-869-4475

Fit Girl Studio provides a diverse offering of barre, spin and yoga classes to help you cross train and maximize your results in a minimum amount of time. Each class focuses on strengthening and building lean muscle. The studio get huge raves for the quality and small class size, the friendliness and expertise of the instructors, and the cleanliness of the studio and locker room amenities.

Orangetheory Fitness
2800 Central St., Evanston, 847-457-1140

Relatively new to the North Shore, Orangetheory Fitness offers group-based training sessions comprised of three components: treadmill interval training blocks, indoor rowing and weight room or resistance training blocks. The sessions are open to adults and teens, ages 16 and up, and although intense, are open to all fitness levels. Informed instructors change up the workout each time, so you’ll never get bored and you won’t plateau. Many tried and true workout devotees swear by Orangetheory as the best workout they have ever done.

The Daily Method
984 Willow Road, Northbrook, 847-714-9910
410 Green Bay Road, Kenilworth, 847-920-5260
188 E. Westminster Ave., Lake Forest, 847-283-9000

The Dailey Method® is an energetic, one hour, full-body workout that combines core conditioning, stretching, Pilates, and ballet barre work. Unlike a traditional large fitness class, clients receive individual education and 1-on-1 attention with a strong focus on proper form and alignment. The result is better posture, better movement, and a more complete workout. In addition, the Northbrook and Lake Forest location also offer Daily Cycle, a bike-to-barre class that uses The Dailey Method’s signature focus on alignment and form, and delivers a balanced, full body workout resulting in a fun, high-calorie burn. Check each location for various class offerings and times.

Shred 415
300 South Happ Rd., Northfield, 847-929-9545
The Shred415 experience is an instructor-led, calorie-burning, high intensity interval training class designed to target all muscle groups; that guarantees to shred your body. Alternating between two treadmill and two weight-training intervals, you’ll increase muscle and burn calories in a fun, fast-paced workout tailored to your level and your goals. All fitness level are welcome as you select your weights; and you set your pace on the treadmill. Shred415 offers small classes, 30 people maximum, in a comfortable, low lit neighborhood studio.

Body Science PFT
335 Ridge Rd., Wilmette, 847-920-9740

Body Science Personal Fitness Training offers ever-challenging, ever-changing workouts that will get and keep your body at its peak. Their unique environment combines the comraderie of group classes with the discipline and attention of personal training. Instructors tailor the classes to each of their clients’ needs to help them achieve their personal health and fitness goals regardless of fitness level. Private training as well as sessions dedicated to teens are available as well. Clients love the convenient class times and the sincere, knowledgeable, hard-working trainers.

The Bar Method
600 Central Ave., Suite 127, Highland Park, 847-432-9150

The Bar Method is a targeted, full body sculpting workout located in a beautifully, newly renovated space in Port Clinton Square. The hour long class combines isometrics, interval training, dance conditioning, and sports rehabilitation to quickly burn fat and carve muscle. Highly-trained instructors guide you through various series of movements that are designed to isolate muscles so you can feel the burn. The class approach is very hands on, with the instructors continuously calling out cues to improve form. All fitness levels welcome.

Fit4MOM (Stoller Strides)
1900 Old Willow Road, Northbrook, 773-593-3915

Stroller Strides is a total fitness program that new moms can do with their babies. It includes power walking and intervals of strength and body toning exercises using exercise tubing, the stroller and the environment. Taught by certified and specially trained fitness instructors, it is a great workout for any level of exerciser. Moms love the comraderie and support from the group; the little ones love the social aspects and music! Winter months are taught indoors at the Accelerated Center in Northbrook, 224-326-2061.

If we omitted one of your favorites, or there is a certain topic you would like to see covered, please leave us a comment! Additionally, we are happy to point out any of these locations as part of our Tour of the Shore, a must do for anyone considering a move to the North Shore. It’s a stress free way to familiarize yourself with the communities, schools, house values and amenities in the area. Call us at 847.881.6657 to find out more.

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A Joyful Noise Preschool

Many of our clients are families with young children who are moving from the city to the North Shore. As they shop for homes, they are typically drawn to the communities with the best schools. Even those with toddlers are already thinking about which high school they want their children to attend. As for elementary school, most have scoured the sites with school rankings to make sure their children are in the schools which will prepare them best for high school.

Preschool usually isn’t a factor when choosing a community, but once a family has bought a house they set about finding a preschool that will get their little ones off to a great start in their education. Fortunately we have a lot of terrific preschools on the North Shore, and which one you choose depends on which best fits your child’s temperment and your own philosophy about early childhood education.

A Joyful Noise is a school that consistently gets high marks from its parents for its play-based curriculum, experienced and nurturing teachers and strong parent community. Many parents make life-long friendships with the other parents in the school.

A Joyful Noise is one of two preschools in Kenilworth and is affiliated with Kenilworth Union Church. You don’t have to live in Kenilworth to attend and you don’t have to be a member of the Church. But the school is based on the principles and values of the Christian faith, and there is a faith dimension to the curriculum.

There is a Moms & Tots (<2 years) program one day a week, and programs for two year olds and three year olds, as well as Junior Kindergarten.

Here’s what’s special about A Joyful Noise:

  • It’s a play-based curriculum whose purpose is development of the whole child and which is based on current research on best practices in early childhood development.
  • It has a wonderful play-space that no other school can match: a huge lot behind the church with playground and garden that the kids enjoy year-round.
  • The teachers are very experienced and have long tenure at the school.
  • There is a strong community of parents who are very involved in the school, and fellowship is an important part of the experience. My neighbor, Chris, gave me a great example of this: when her second child was born the school families prepared and delivered six weeks of meals to her family!

If you would like to consider a preschool that incorporates Christian principles, you should check out A Joyful Noise. If you don’t live in Kenilworth, don’t worry. Only about 20% of kids at A Joyful Noise live there. The rest are from all over the North Shore: Wilmette, Winnetka, Glenview, Northfield, etc.

A Joyful Noise Preschool is located at 211 Kenilworth Avenue, Kenilworth, IL 60043. For more info or to schedule a tour of the school call (847) 853-2100 or visit

North Shore Views is the official website of the Come Home North Shore team and the most comprehensive online source for North Shore Chicago real estate and community information. Whether you are looking for market statistics, homes for sale or local events, North Shore Views has it all at your fingertips. Browse information regarding our communities, market data, luxury homes, lakefront property, schools and what you should know about making the move to the North Shore.

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This Kenilworth Home is a Perfect Condo Alternative

The Come Home North Shore team just listed this charming cottage at 371 Ridge Road in Kenilworth. The home is a perfect condo alternative and conveniently located near the train, schools and Ridge Road shopping. At $349,900, it’s undoubtedly the best value in Kenilworth!

The home has a fascinating history. Built in 1879, this cottage originally functioned as a tavern and was located across the street in Wilmette (then known as Gross Point). Word has it that the tavern’s two back bedrooms were rented out by the hour. With the onset of Prohibition, all of the taverns on Ridge Road were closed. (The village of Gross Point, having lost its major source of revenue, went bankrupt and was later annexed by Wilmette). The building was moved to Kenilworth and re-purposed as a residence.

The single-story home has spacious living and dining rooms, a light-filled family room, two bedrooms, a kitchen and a bathroom. The large basement offers ample room for storage, workshop and laundry, though there is a stackable washer/dryer on the main floor, as well.

You can see more pictures and get more info about 371 Ridge Road here. If you’d like to tour the home, please give us a call at 847-881-6657 and we’d be glad to show it to you. You can search other Kenilworth homes for sale here.

We are North Shore real estate specialists and one of the top teams in the area. If you would like to schedule a buyer or seller consultation with the Come Home North Shore team, please contact us at 847-881-6657 or send us a note here


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Memorial Day Ceremonies on the North Shore of Chicago


Before you hit the pool or fire up the grill on Monday, take time to honor our fallen heroes this Memorial Day at one of the North Shore’s ceremonies:


American Legion Post 42 will host a Memorial Day ceremony at Fountain Square  – Veterans Memorial Plaza (Davis St. and Sherman Ave.) beginning at 10:30 am. The Northwestern University NROTC color guard and rifle team have been invited to participate. Evanston leaders will offer their thoughts and perspectives on Memorial Day and its meaning.


The parade begins at 10:30 on the corner of Lake and Ridge (St. Joseph’s parking lot) and proceeds down Lake to Park Ave, then south to Wilmette Ave. and east to Village Hall, where there will be a ceremony to honor our war heroes. Read the rest of this entry »

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5 Fun Things To Do on the North Shore: February 10-12

Robin's Dog Stars

Looking for something fun to do on Chicago’s North Shore this weekend? Here are some ideas:

Movie Night featuring “The Smurfs”

Friday, Feb. 10 at 6:30 pm
Kenilworth Club, 410 Kenilworth Ave., Kenilworth
Tickets: $5.00 (includes snacks)
All ages

Family Bingo Night

Friday, Feb. 10 at 6:30 pm
Winnetka Community House, 620 Lincoln Ave., Winnetka- Rm 111
$15.00 (includes snacks and beverages)
All ages

Robin’s Dog Stars

Saturday, Feb. 11 2:00-2:45 pm
Wilmette Library, 1242 Wilmette Ave., Wilmette
Two dogs will visit the library with their expert trainer, Robin Bengston. They’ll do stunts, show off their adding and counting skills , and even perform some magic tricks.
All ages.

Comedy at the Mette with Sean Flannery

Saturday, Feb. 11 at 9:00 pm
Wilmette Theatre, 1122 Central Ave., Wilmette
Tickets: $12

Jazz Vespers

Sunday, Feb. 12 at 4:00 pm
Winnetka Congregational Church, 725 Pine St., Winnetka
Featuring the Victor Goines Quartet and vocalist Tammy McCann
Suggested donation: $10.00
All ages


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Kenilworth is Third Wealthiest Zip Code in America

Kenilworth sign recently released findings of a study to determine the 50 wealthiest zip codes in America. Three North Shore communities ranked in the top fifteen, with Kenilworth in third place with an average household income of $323,588 and an average household net worth of $1,558,833.

Lake Forest and Winnetka, which ranked thirteen and fourteen, respectively, were the only other Illinois communities recognized in the report,

Here’s a list of the other zip codes making up the top fifteen richest areas in the country:

#1 – Palm Beach, FL (33480)

#2 – Old Westbury, NY (11568)

#3 – Kenilworth, IL (60043)

#4 – Beverly Hills, CA (90210)

#5 – Portola Valley, CA (94028) Read the rest of this entry »


North Shore Housing Inventory

Here is a snapshot of active listings (single family detached homes) on the market as of April 5, 2010.

# Active Listings
Avg. List Price
Median List Price
Days on Market
Highland Park
Lake Forest

Source: MRED – Deemed reliable but not guaranteed.


North Shore Market Update: 1st Quarter 2010

The North Shore housing market looks a whole lot better in 2010 than it did at this time last year. Driven by low interest rates, the home buyer tax credit, plentiful supply of homes to choose from and attractive prices, buyers have returned to the market. Prices are still soft but the rate of decline has slowed.

Housing sales on Chicago’s North Shore increased 56% in the first quarter of 2010 vs. the same period last year. All towns had healthy increases except for Northfield which had one less sale this year than last. The big winner in percentage terms was Kenilworth, which had nine sales this year vs. one last year.

Average prices for sold properties on the North Shore was down 7%. Lake Forest showed the biggest drop (-30%), followed by Winnetka (-21%). Highland Park had only a 1% decrease in average price, while Evanston and Wilmette actually showed increases. Kenilworth’s large increase in average price was driven by the fact that the only sale in 2009 was for an unusually low-priced property for this village.

Days on market for properties sold was down 8% for the North Shore, but the numbers varied widely across individual towns. The largest decreases in market time were in Wilmette (-70%) and Lake Forest (-58%). The largest increases were in Kenilworth (+48%) and Northfield (+38%).

North Shore Market Update – 1st Qtr. 2010 vs. Year Ago*

AnnechartNS*Single family detached homes. Source: MRED – Deemed reliable but not guaranteed

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North Shore Market Update: January-February 2010

For the first two months of 2010 sales of single family homes on Chicago’s North Shore were up 47% over the same period last year. The big winners were Highland Park and Lake Forest, which both more than doubled their sales vs. last year. Kenilworth, which only had one sale in the first two months of 2009, had five this year.

While prices were down 7% from this time last year, the rate of decline does seem to be slowing and the market may be nearing the bottom. Market times are up over last year but down versus previous months and there is less inventory on the market now.

North Shore Market Trends: Jan. – Feb. 2010 (vs. year ago)

Units Sold
% chg
Avg. Price
% chg
Mkt Time
% chg
Highland Park
Lake Forest

Source: MRED LLC -Deemed reliable but not guaranteed

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Guide to Kenilworth Preschools

preschool girls with doll houseThis is Part 3 of my preschool series, with a list of Kenilworth schools. Kenilworth is a small town so there are not many, but you also have access to the preschools in nearby Winnetka and Wilmette.

All Things Bright and Beautiful Preschool

222 Kenilworth Ave., Kenilworth, IL 60043
(847) 251-6120, ext. 16
All Things Bright and Beautiful website

Run by the Church of the Holy Comforter, this preschool program is open to children 2-4 years old. There is also a “Mommy and Me ” program for younger children. It offers a play-based program focused on the social, emotional and spiritual growth of its children.

A Joyful Noise Preschool

211 Kenilworth Ave., Kenilworth, Il 60043
(847) 853-1738
A Joyful Noise website

A Joyful Noise is the preschool at Kenilworth Union Church but is open to members and non-members alike. It offers programs for 0-5 year olds, including Mommy and Me Music Class, Moms and Tots, Two’s and Older Two’s classes, Three’s classes and Junior Kindergarten. Extended day and enrichment programs are also offered.

For more information, visit

Joseph Sears School

542 Abbotsford Rd., Kenilworth, IL 60043
(847) 256-5006

Joseph Sears School is the public school in Kenilworth for grades JK-8. The Junior Kindergarten provides a warm and nurturing environment in which children can learn through interactive play and problem-solving.  Activities include art, music, dramatic play, outdoor play, math, science, reading and pre-writing. Different levels of ability, development and learning styles are expected, accepted and used to design appropriate activities.

Related posts:

Anne West - Your North Shore Real Estate Connection

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