Little Village is a neighborhood on the southwest side of Chicago. The area is bordered to the south by the Chicago Sanitary and Ship Canal as well as the Stevenson Expressway. There are several train lines that make multiple stops in Little Village, which allows residents to travel throughout the city via public transportation.
The Little Village neighborhood was originally developed by Irish and Eastern European immigrants during the 1800s. However, it is currently populated by many Mexican families. In fact, the area has one of the largest Mexican populations in the Midwest. Subsequently, Little Village is known for having outstanding Mexican restaurants and exciting festivals that celebrate the culture. The Mexican Independence Day and Cinco de Mayo festivals draw in crowds from all over the Chicagoland area.
The Chicago Urban Art Retreat Center is located in Little Village. This nonprofit group focuses on bringing together artists from unique backgrounds in order to teach and learn from one another. While member of CUARC create art pieces, they are encouraged to examine some of the issues that plague their culture, including racial, socioeconomic, sexual and cultural discrimination.
The overall feel of Little Village is one of a strong community. Residents can stop at a restaurant, coffee shop, library or boutique on just about any corner and strike up a conversation with other locals.