The 2013 swim season has ended. Please continue to enjoy Chicago's lakefront parkland until the beaches open for swimming again on May 23, 2014.
Located in the Rogers Park neighborhood, Howard Beach offers patrons 3.93 acres of parkland that includes a beach, park area with benches and playground.
Whether you are looking to relax on the sandy beach soaking in some rays, getting active or looking for some shade under a park tree, Howard Beach is a great summer destination!
Limited street parking
The following public bus & train routes serve this beach:
CTA Bus Routes:
147 Outer Drive Express
A playground is located right at the top of the stairs leading up from the beach
Please follow the rules while you’re at the beach:
- Swim only when lifeguards are on duty.
- Follow lifeguards’ instructions.
- Only Coast Guard approved flotation devices are permitted.
- No smoking.
- No alcohol.
- No dogs on the beach.
- Do not feed birds or wildlife.
- Dispose of trash and recycling in appropriate containers.
- Grill in designated areas only and dispose of coals in red barrels.
- Keep accessible beach walks clear. No bicycling, skateboarding or rollerblading is permitted in these areas.
- There is no paddle or board sport access to the Lake Michigan Water Trail at Howard Beach. For information on beaches with launch points for accessing the Lake Michigan Water Trail, visit the rules page.
A growing population of apartment dwellers in Rogers Park and other far North Side neighborhoods lacked easy access to recreational opportunities, making the beaches a valued neighborhood asset. In contrast to the city's larger municipal beaches, the street-end beaches had no changing rooms or other facilities — though lifeguards did man the beaches.
The city Bureau of Parks and Recreation often used adjacent street names for identification purposes. Howard Avenue and the adjoining beach are named for Howard Ure (1896-1984), scion of a Rogers Park pioneer family. John Calder Ure began to farm in the Rogers Park area in the mid-19th century. His son, John F. Ure, founded the Ure Dairy on his father's property, and later donated the right-of-way for Howard Avenue. Howard Ure, a banker, became a director of the Howard Avenue Trust and Savings Bank at the early age of 26. Between 1953 and 1973, he served as a director of the North Shore National Bank of Chicago.
The Chicago Park District acquired Howard Beach Park from the City of Chicago in 1959. Since at least 1921, the city's Bureau of Parks and Recreation had operated the beach along with a group of 18 municipal beaches.