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The best attractions and things to do in Pilsen

Discover a vibrant art scene, unique performance venues and parks in Chicago's Pilsen neighborhood

Photograph: Courtesy Chicago Arts District

It's no secret Pilsen is the next hip Chicago neighborhood, and it's easy to see why. With a flourishing art community, the National Museum of Mexican Art, fantastic food and some of the city's best event spaces, there's lots to see and even more to do in Pilsen. 

RECOMMENDED: Our complete guide to Pilsen

The best attractions in Pilsen

Thalia Hall

This beautiful late-19th century space designed as a community hall was re-established and reimagined in 2013 and is now the jewel of Pilsen. The antique venue now houses one of the city’s best music and performance venues as well as Dusek’s Board and Beer, Punch House and the newly added Tack Room. That's three fabulous and mouthwatering spots to grab a drink or meal before or after a show.

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Lower West Side

National Museum of Mexican Art

You don't have to look any further than Pilsen to find one of the largest Latino cultural organizations in the U.S. Visit the National Museum of Meixcan Art and explore a 6,000-piece permanent collection, rotating exhibits, performing arts showcases and educational programming that represents an illustrious Mexican culture.

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Lower West Side

Chicago Arts District

The Chicago Arts District encompasses multiple blocks of Pilsen, providing a place for artists to live and work, galleries, studios and exhibition spaces. While most galleries in the neighborhood are tough to track down or lack daily public access, on the Chicago Arts District’s long-running 2nd Fridays Gallery Night, visitors can tour more than 30 lofts, galleries and retail spaces and truly take in the neighborhood's thriving art scene.

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Lower West Side
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Harrison Park

Located right next to the National Museum of Mexican Art, this park features a field house with a gymnastics center, indoor swimming pool and a computer lab. The nearly 18 acres of space include tennis courts, basketball courts, baseball fields, athletic fields for football or soccer, a playground and community garden.

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Lower West Side

Chicago Urban Art Society

In the East Pilsen Industrial Corridor, CUAS is an emerging mixed-use art space that facilitates "creative juxtapositions." This cultural institution presents work by contemporary artists, promotes projects and hosts events by creative-sector groups—everything from pop-up dinners to the Pilsen Flea Market to Slow and Low, a community lowrider festival.

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Lower West Side

Honky Tonk Barbeque

This Memphis-style dry-rubbed barbecue joint has more than some of the best pulled pork around. Honky Tonk also serves up a hearty lineup of live music each week, so you can enjoy some of our city’s top musicians while digging into a delicious meal. Enjoy performances from local string bands, jazz trios, swing bands, blues and R&B artists who frequent Honky Tonk for a night of good eats and vibrant tunes.

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Lower West Side
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DeColores

Indulge in a double dose of the best of what Pilsen has to offer at this eatery and art gallery. Here you can peruse the space’s well-curated walls featuring local artists and take in the energy of the art community who come to hang out and connect over artistic discussions. While you’re getting a taste of the Pilsen art community, why not add solid guac, well-seasoned skirt steak and the famous tres leches cake from Kristoffer’s Bakery?

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Lincoln Park

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