DANCING IN CHICAGO
A guide to places to dance in the greater Chicago area (Ballroom, Latin, Swing, Country & Western). Information on locations, prices, schedules, directions, and general description of establishments.
For additional dance related information, see Aria's Dance Page.
(in alphabetical order)
Ambassador West Hotel 1300 N. State, Chicago, IL 60610
Ambassador ballroom dances used to be held monthly, but now are less regular. Call for more information. Live music, usually a small dance contest, and sometimes a performance. The dances are on a weekend, usually Friday or Saturday evening. Tickets are $20 in advance or $25 at the door. Has dress code.
1106 W Lawrence Ave., Chicago, IL 60640
Formerly known as Aragon Ballroom. Opened in Chicago in 1926, hosting big band dances. These days, whenever it is not hosting rock concerts, it offers Salsa nights and blues nights. Arrangements vary, call for schedules and details.
3910 N. Lincoln Ave , Chicago, IL 60613
Salsa/Merengue on Wednesdays.
207 S. Villa Park Ave., Villa Park, IL 60181
Owned by Norm and Heidi Lucky. Beginners through advanced classes in Ballroom, Latin, Swing, Hustle, and Argentine Tango. Saturday night dances, sometimes with live bands and/or pro shows. Sunday night dances on the second Sunday of every month. Tea dances every Sunday afternoon 3-5pm. Dances are $6 and up, depending on the events (e.g. live music, etc.) for calendar of events, call the studio number given above.
One of the teachers in this studio is Diana Conroy, who also teaches at Golden's School of Dance.
310 E Chicago St, Elgin, IL 60120
This location no longer sponsors ballroom dancing.
Corner of Bloomingdale and Army Trail, Glendale Hights, IL
Formerly known as Stampedes. For a brief period of time between June 97
and 31 October 97, Stampedes was a country dance place. They changed
format in November to a retro (60's - 70's) dance place. They play music
suitable to WCS and Hustle, but you probably need to go with partner.
The bop shop has gone out of business.
1960 N. Clybourn, Chicago, IL 60614
Closure: Bossa Nova has apparently gone out of business.
1760 N Milwaukee Ave, Libertyville, IL 60048
260 E Kenilworth, Villa Park., IL 60181
Parties on Wednesday, Thursday, Saturday, and Sunday evenings. The studio and floor are well maintained.
(6637 Kennedy Ave, Hammond) Cedar Lake
Parties at Great Oaks After Four Club, Fridays.
Has changed name to Club 720.
1175 W. Lake Street (by Rt 59), Bartlett, IL 60103
Restaurant and C/W dance club, located West of Route 59 in Bartlett, IL. Dancing and lessons on a 2500 sq. ft. dance floor. Line dance lessons Monday 7pm, Tuesday and Friday 7:30pm. Couples dance lessons Wednesday at 8pm. Thursday is retro night. Live bands Friday and Saturday starting at 9:30pm. Club hours are 7pm-4am daily. Cover charge is $3 Monday thru Thursday, and $4 Friday and Saturday. Food and drink special on Sunday, call to enquire.
2421 W Lawrence Ave, Chicago, IL 60625
Wednesdays, Fridays, and Saturdays. Downstairs is disco, upstairs is Latin.
1000 N. Milwaukee Ave, Wheeling.
NOTE: Chevy chase is closed until 2000 for remodeling.
Large ballroom and live bands. Ballroom dancing every Wednesday evening 8:30-11:00pm on a 6300 sq. ft. dance floor.
Chevy Chase also offers Country and Western lessons and dancing on Mondays and Tuesdays. DJ music is played starting 7pm. Instruction begins at 7:30pm. Cover charge is $4.
Chevy Chase is located just North of the Lake Cook Road. It is resides on the grounds of the Chevy Chase Golf Club.
7117 Lexington Ln., Fox Lake, IL 60020
Janis Kenyon (email: [email protected]), who used to run the Chicago Swing Dance Club, is now mostly involved with the Aregentine Tango Dance Association. Both the Chicago Swing Dance Club and Chicago Swing and Hustle Dance Club are now defunct.
3660 W Irving Park, Chicago, IL 60618
(At the intersection of Elston & Irving Park)
Owned by Bob and Penny Urbon, this studio specializes in American Style Ballroom instruction. They also offer classes in Salsa, Merengue, and Argentine Tango. They seem to have open dances planned over most weekends, but these are each a separate event (i.e. no regular weekly dance at the same hour). For more information, call, send email to [email protected], or visit the Chicago Dance home page. The dances are held on a 3000 square ft. maple dance floor, and are open to the public.
Directions: From North or South: Take I-90 or I-94 to the Irving Park Exit, the studio is approximately 3.5 blocks to the east on Irving Park. From the West, take I-290 to I-90 and follow directions above.
Dances at: Centre at North Park, 10040 W. Addison, Franklin Park, IL 60131
847-678-4021 (Centre at North Park)
773-549-1528 (Club information)
The Rebels Swing dance club holds dances two Friday nights every month, 8:00pm-12:00am. For more information on schedule, call the above phone number, or by email contact [email protected] or [email protected]. Admission price is $3 for club members and $6 for the general public.
This is the student dance club of the University of Chicago. They were inaugurated in January 1997, and currently offer swing and Lindy hop lessons.
2010 W Carol St, Chicago, IL
This is a for-profit organization founded by four Lindy Hoppers in the city of Chicago. It concentrates on teaching group classes in Swing, mainly Lindy Hop, but also diversifies to other dances. The address given above is not a studio; the group holds classes in various locations, including:
Blue Door Studio, 1809 W. Webster St. Alphonsus Parish Center, 2941 N. Greenview St. Liquid, 1997 N. ClybournThe locations are subject to change, so you are advised to get in touch with them before going for any classes. You can also contact them at [email protected].
P.O. Box 713, Franklin Park, IL 60131
CWCJC has dances on the first and third Saturday of each month from 8:00pm to 12:30am. The dances are held in Franklin Park at an American Legion Hall located at 9757 W Pacific Ave. Entry fee is $4.00 for members and $7.00 for non-members. The information hotline is 708-456-6000. They also offer Jitterbug dance lessons; the dance lesson hot line is 312-696-6939.
4146 Elston Ave.,
Mainly international style dancing. Instructors are Dank Kanosak (a former Thai champion) and Mary Ann Carter.
720 N. Wells, Chicago
Formerly known as "Cairo", Club 720 is located on the corner of N. Wells and Superior. Salsa dancing with free lessons every Tuesday and Friday. Live Salsa band on Tuesdays and Fridays. The Chicago Tango club meets at Club 720 every Tuesday night, 7:00pm-10:00pm on the third floor. Admission $5 but sometimes as much as $15. Some patrons have complained about the valet parking as well as the admission price.
3047 N Lincoln #210, Chicago, IL 60657
International and contemporary latin dancing (cumbia, salsa, etc). Classes on weekday evenings, parties every other Saturday evening. Good instructors. Young crowd. This studio opened in the last few years and has a nice modern floor. Recommended instructors include Ron Ford (modern) and Dale Pizzitola (latin). Allen Desterhaft teaches American smooth and rhythm.
981 W. Wise Rd., Schaumburg, IL 60193
American and International style dance instruction. Group and private lessons. Open dances on second and fourth Saturdays of each month, starting at 8pm. There is a lesson before the dance, starting at 7pm. Studio manager is Hugh McGarvey.
at Elks Club, 262 Golf Road, Arlington Hights, IL
DANCE WORLD is a not-for-profit membership based organization promoting all forms of dance, including but not limited to Ballroom, Hustle, Swing and Country Western. The Club promotes exposure to Education and aims to provide a safe and enjoyable social atmosphere. Dances are held monthly on a Saturday, 8:00pm until Midnight, at the Elks Club, 262 Golf Road(1/2 block east of Arlington Heights Road), Arlington Heights, Il. Cost is $5 for members and first time guests.
1623 W. Melrose, Chicago, IL 60657
International ballroom and Latin dancing, various levels. Classes on weekday evenings: Latin dancing on Mondays and Tuesdays, Standard (modern) on Wednesdays, and Tango on Thursdays. Parties every other Saturday. Occasional shows/clinics with world class dancers. Relatively young crowd. The owner and latin instructor, Jay Jarquin, is very friendly.
Dance Connection and Dancer's Delight are a couple of blocks away from each other. They used to be one studio which split into two.
5600 W. Fullerton
Salsa/Merengue music on Fridays, well recommended, two floors.
1799 S. Busse Rd., Mt. Prospect, IL 60056
This is a restaurant and C/W dance club, about 45 minutes drive from downtown Chicago. Some of the dancers that used to hang out at Whiskey River seem to have taken to Duma's, after Whiskey River closed. This is the sister club of Cadillac Ranch.
Dumas Walker's offers Country Western dancing Wednesday, Friday, Saturday, and Sunday to DJ music. Hours are as follows: Wednesday & Sunday 6 pm - 1 am, Friday & Saturday 6 pm - 2 am. Dance floor size is about 2000 square feet. Dance lessons start at 7:30 Wednesday, Friday and Saturday. Cover charge is $3.
632 N Dearborn, Chicago, IL 60610
Salsa and Merengue dancing every Thursday night, beginning at 9pm with a free dance lesson. Music by DJ Juan Carlos and live Salsa and Merengue bands. Admission $5 before 11pm, $7 after. Excalibur is a large three-tiered dance club; three dance floors under one roof. The crowd is generally over 25.
225 W. Ontario, Chicago
Faces is a nightclub and bar adjacent to (and owned by) Magnum's Steakhouse. Nice 30x30 sq. ft. dance floor, with seating on two sides of the floor and a long bar along the two other sides, offering a chic atmosphere. Faces is located at the corner of Ontario and Franklin.
Salsa and Merengue dancing every Wednesday night starting at 6pm. Music is DJ every week, with live bands once a month. Admission is complimentary, except when live bands play, call for details. Small dance floor. This event is run by the same management as Excalibur. The crowd is classy and generally over 30.
Also West Coast Swing dancing on Sunday nights. No cover charge.
16 W. Chicago Av., Naperville, IL
Big band swing on Wednesdays. As of 1997, the Big Swing plays live music on Wednesdays. The band has some of the former members of Mighty Blue Kings. Their music is very dancable. Free swing dance lesson starting at 7pm, then open dancing 8pm-1am. Frankie's also has dance lessons on Thursdays, call to enquire.
10225 S. Harlem Ave, Chicago Ridge.
Similar to Willowbrook. Dancing on Fridays to various big bands, and taped music on Sundays. Admission $10.
Country Western dancing Tuesdays and Thursdays, starting at 7:30pm. Admission $5.
1825 W. Golf Rd., Schaumburg, IL 60194
Ballroom group classes four days a week (Friday through Monday) 7:30-8:30pm, in Standard, Latin, Swing and Hustle, by Diana Conroy. Regular Saturday night open dances (starting Jan. 98) 8:30-11:00pm, $5 admission.
Organizes dances every two or three months. Call 708-469-6028 for information. The Chicago chapter president is Jeanine Tobin, 773-237-8217. You can contact the Chicago USABDA via email at [email protected].
4802 N. Broadway, Chicago, IL 60640
Tuesday nights used to belong to the Mighty Blue Kings, but since July 1997, the Big Swing plays Tuesday nights at the Green Mill every Tuesday at the Green Mill starting at 9pm. The place is usually packed and the dance floor is small. (the full name of the place is ``Green Mill Cocktail Lounge'').
Dance instruction group. They sponsor dance classes and Swing dance parties. Dues payable on the first class. For more informaiton , contact them at [email protected].
300 N State St, Chicago, IL 60610
157 W. Ontario, Chicago, IL 60610
Lessons on most Tuesdays, general dancing all nights of the week. Dancing on a 1000 sq. ft. floor which looks somewhat smaller because of the posts in the middle of the floor. The crowd is usually older and more sophisticated, and the average level of dancing is very good. Strict dress code (no jeans or sneakers). Cover charge can vary according to the type of music, but is generally $5 for weeknights and DJ music, more for weekends and live music.
Inta's is located on Erie close to the intersection with Franklin. It is within easy walking distance of Club 720.
4626 North Knox Ave, Chicago, IL 60630
Open dances two Saturdays every month, starting at 7:30pm. Large wooden floor. Dances sponsored by Vito Bertucci.
3401 N Clark St Chicago, IL 60657
Thursday nights they have a Salsa night; all other nights, they are a post-collegiate sports/dance bar.
1227 Maple Ave. Lisle, IL 60532
Swing Lessons Every Tuesday Starting at 7pm followed by DJ Music. $3 Cover with food and drink specials.
21611 N Milwaukee Ave, Lincolnshire, IL 60069
Note: Julie's has gone out of business.
(formerly International Club)
3201 N. Long, Chicago, IL 60641
Instructors Kris and Ella Kasperowicz. Kris coached a Polish formation team which was third in the world. They specialize in International style, especially Latin. One of the better centers in Chicago for taking technique lessons.
955 Main St, Crete, IL 60417
Note: Kawliga's closed on January 1, 1999.
3336 N Milwaukee
Latin dancing Friday and Saturday nights.
1997 N. Clybourne, Chicago, IL
Features Big Band Swing every night except Mondays. Approximagely 600 sq. ft. dance floor, good music, young crowd, big turnout. Usually no cover charge on weeknights unless there is live music. A Country Western establishment named "Whiskey River" used to reside at this location. It went out of business in early 1997 and came back with this new name and new format. 21 years and older only. Liquid is located at the corner of Clybourne and Racine Ave.
Since mid-1997, the Thursday night gigs at the Liquid are played by the Big Swing. Big Swing is a 10-piece band that plays a lot of Jump Blues as well as Swing and Jazz.
Wednesday nights: swing dancing to DJ music, starting at 9pm. Swing lessons before the dance, starting at 7:30pm.
1640 North Damen, Chicago, IL 60647
Wednesdays, they have some Samba/Salsa music, but it's usually not dancable. The crowd is trendy-chic cigar-smoking, and are more interested in looking cool than music or dancing.
401 W. Lake St, Northlake, IL
Used to be called "Majestic Ballroom," in what used to be the Northlake Hotel. Tuesday night dances 8-11pm. Free dance lessons at 7:30pm. Admission $10. Most Tuesdays live music will be provided by the Steve Cooper Orchestra. You can contact them at [email protected]
3300 W 111th St (Two blocks W of Kedzie),
Free C/W lessons on M W Th, no cover.
510 E Washington St, Bloomington, IL 61701-4180
101 E Irving Park Rd, Bensenville, IL 60106
925 W Chicago Ave
Ceroc dancing on Tuesdays starting at 7:30pm.
1565 N. Milwaukee, Chicago, IL 60622
The Chicago Jump Company play there every Tuesday with free dance lessons by Big City Swing at 8pm.
1115 N. Northbranch, Chicago, IL 60622
Closure: The Olive has apparently gone out of business.
1240 Sunset Road, Winnetka, IL 60093
Tommy and Nancy Patterson teach international style. Lessons are in six week sets, and you'll need a partner.
4051 E. Main St., St. Charles, IL 60174
Note: The following information has not been verified.
he Pheasant Run Country Club in St. Charles, Illinois, is sponsoring a SWING DANCE every Friday evening. The dance starts with a lesson at 8 p.m., followed by dancing to a live band from 9 to midnight. The cost is only $5, and the crowd is mostly in their 30s.
260 W. Joe Orr, Chicago Heights, IL
Rockin Armadillo has gone out of business
1035 Summit Street, Crown Point, Indiana 46307
Country western dance hall, including line and couples dancing, on a 5000 sq. ft. dance floor. The hours are Wednesdays 7-11pm admission $4 (age 17 and up, no bar), Friday and Saturday 7-12pm (age 21 and up, bar open) admission $4, Sundays are family days 5-8pm admission $4 for adults, $2 for ages 6-12, and free for under 6.
Rockin Ranch offers country western dance classes. Beginner classes on Tuesdays, Beginner II on Thursdays, Intermediate on Mondays. The classes are 6 weeks long for each level. Contact them for more details.
Directions: From Chicago: take 80-94 east to I-65 South in Indiana. Make exit to Rt 30 west. Go west 1 mile to Rt 53. Go South on Rt 53 for 3 miles to Summit St. Turn right (West) and the clib is located approximately 1/2 mile on the right.
1860 N Elston Ave.
Open until 4am on weekdays, 5am on weekends.
3159 N. Southport, Chicago, IL 60657
This is a restaurant with a dance floor. Lessons are sometimes offered before the band, at about 7:00, but it's not consistent; call before showing up for lessons. There is usually a sizable crowd of regulars who one can dance with. They used to have the Chicago Jump Company on Tuesdays and the Chicago Record Hop every other Sunday, but not any more. But still this is a good venue for live music.
152 W. Higgins (Near Roselle Rd), Hoffman Estates, IL 60195
Small dance floor. Open 7 days a week with Country Western dancing. Lessons most evenings. Sunday is family day and Sunday night is Teen night. Call for lesson starting times vary. Call for latest schedule.
2251 N. Lincoln,
Salsa music, any day, but cement floor.
440 N Halsted St, Chicago, IL 60622
Apparently Star Dust has either moved to another location or gone out of business. If you know about the fate of this club, please let me know.
2061 W Maple Ave, Mundelein, IL 60060
Country Western dancing Monday through Saturday with lessons at 7:30pm Doors open at 7pm.
702 South Auburn Circle Schaumburg, IL 69193
From intro to their web page: ``Swing'N'Country is a Not For Profit organization whose purpose is to promote couple-style Country Western dancing and Swing dancing in a non-competitive atmosphere and to provide opportunities for growth through instructional programs and community involvement.''
Swing'N'Country organizes dance events, see their web page for details. Membership dues are $20 per year. They also publish a newsletter reflecting Country Swing news, comps, events, and related issues.
1658 N. Milwaukee #395, Chicago 60622
Swing-Out Chicago branched out of Chicago Swing Half-breeds, and is now a separate organizations. It has a variety of swing classes and dance events at various Chicago locations. Call to enquire.
6137 N. Northwest Hwy, Chicago
Tango... Nada Mas is a studio devoted solely to Argentine Tango. Milongas every Saturday night, starting with an introductory class 8:30-9:00pm, and dancing from 9pm. Admission $10. Also practica (dance practices) on Mondays and Thursdays, open to public, starting at 9:30pm, admission $5.
Directions: From the Edens Expressway (I-94), take the westbound Touhy Ave. exit. Travel 3 miles to Harlem. Turn Left on Harlem, and go one mile south to Northwest Highway. The studio is located 1/2 block from the metra commuter train station (Norwood Park stop on the Chicago/Harvard line).
2659 N. Milwaulee Ave, Chicago, IL 60647
2047 N. Milwaukee, Chicago, IL 60647
Formerly known as Los Rosalles. Fridays and Saturdays, classy place with a good-sized floor. Highly recommended. They usually have two live Salsa/Merengue bands on the weekends, and their dance floor is large with an open ceiling (2 floors) to keep it cool.
University of Chicago
This club offers beginning, intermediate, and advance classes. Contact person is Joshua Bennet.
510 N. Western, Chicago, IL 60612
Latin dancing. The ambience is much like Inta's, with older, more sophisticated crowd. But the music is hot and the dancing is great.
1615 N Clybourn Ave, Chicago, IL 60614
Wednesdays they have a DJ spin Salsa/Merengue downstairs and a Latin Jazz band upstairs; however, the band does not play good dance music.
601 Mall Dr., Schaumburg IL 60173
Foremerly called "The Copa."
Each week features a diffrent live band that performs Jazz/Big Band/Swing. The band starts at 8:30 and plays untill midnight. The dance instructor Paul Arnold, who specalizes in East Coast Swing, Charlston, Jitterbug, ANd Lindy Hop, starts at 7. 1000 sq ft hard wood dance floor. Food is 1/2 price after 9pm. There is no cover charge. This is a 21+ club.
1997 N. Clybourne,
Has changed name to "Liquid" and now is a Swing bar.
6839 N. Milwaukee Ave., Niles, Illinois 60714
Two dance floors, with two DJ booths, one for beginners and the other for more advanced dancers. Tuesday nights 7:00-10:30pm. Admission is $3 for students and $4 for adults.
25520 S Governors Hwy Monee, IL 60449
Has changed name to Keggers Night Club and has a hard rock format. No more country dancing!
8900 S. Archer Ave, Willow Springs.
Very large ballroom with live bands. Ballroom dancing on Thursdays 8:00-10:30pm and Sundays 2:00-5:30pm, to live big band music. Admission $10. Most Saturdays the Ballroom is used for private parties, but occationally open dances are held on Saturdays as well. Call to enquire. Willowbrook has a dress code (jacket and tie), and you can be turned away if not dressed up.
Swing lessons and dancing on Wednesday nights, 7-11pm, admission $7 with lessons included. Swing Sunday nights 7:30-11:30 with a live band, $10 admission. Willowbrook used to have Country Western dancing on Wednesdays that is now replaced with Swing.
Of Related Interest:
short list is a glossary of the places to dance locally, including addresses and phone numbers. This section should serve as a quick reference. If you already know where you want to go, and need the address or the phone number, this is the place to look. Because of its brevity, finding an item is often easier here.
If you need more extensive information, then the long list will probably serve you better. This section contains comprehensive information on the times, locations, and prices of dance events. In many cases, directions and maps are also provided.
To facilitate the finding of specific dance venues, dance types are grouped into the following classes:
If you feel that the information you need is not represented here, please read the FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions) before contacting me.
Thanks are due to Mark Balzer, Sebastian Musial, Joanne Cohn, Wayne Bartl, Janis Kenyon, Jase Merecki, Amelia (Amy) Hurlock, Young-Jin Kim, Peter Barker, Danny Sniderman, Robert Crowe, Margaret Rodriquez, Regina Maritote, Lilia Breneisen for the contribution of information to this page.
The material in this page constitutes no express or implied endorsements.
Last Modified 12 October 1999
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Copyright (c) Aria Nosratinia 1996, 1997, 1998, 1999