Superman cheesecake. Photo courtesy of Peteet's Cheesecakes.

Neighborhood Spotlight: Oak Park

Did you know Oak Park has history dating all the way back to 1840? That’s the year it was first settled by European Americans, but it wasn’t until 1914 that the first major housing development began construction, bringing in many more residents. In the ‘50s, Oak Park’s population boomed, increasing from 5,000 to more than 36,000. Holy Baby Boomers, Batman!

History lesson aside, Oak Park is a gem that doesn’t often receive its due. With a rich history and plenty of places to check out, why not take a trip to this Detroit suburb?

Ernie’s Market


Photo courtesy of Ernie’s Market.

This is where you should start your trip. Ernie’s Market is run by the titular owner and the sandwiches are both delicious and massive. They’re stacked high with whatever you want and cheap, too. Ernie’s Market will give you a lunch that’s a definite bang-for-your-buck.

Shepherd Park

After feeling the effects of a sandwich that may as well have been intended for two stomachs instead of one, take a stroll through one of Oak Park’s many…well, parks! I recommend Shepherd Park, known by the locals as Oak Park Park (say that five times fast) and named after former mayor David H. Shepherd. It has tons of playground equipment for kids, grills for luncheons, pavilions for parties, basketball courts, tennis courts, an outdoor pool and much more.

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Grace Centers of Hope Thrift Store

If you’re still trying to work off that monstrous lunch from Ernie’s, there’s no better cure than some good ol’ shopping. The Grace Centers of Hope Thrift Store is perfect for finding hidden gems and the best part is that shopping here supports Grace Centers of Hope, which work to help those that suffer from substance abuse/addiction and homeless individuals.

Pita Cafe

Serving Mediterranean cuisine and raw juices, Pita Cafe has been voted a local favorite spot to dine. They have delicious housemade hummus that you can get as is or topped with your choice of lamb tips, veggies or chicken. It’s a perfect appetizer. Then, move onto a delectable falafel or shawarma sandwich. All of this pairs best with a glass of raw juice. I recommend the carrot apple juice.

Peteet’s Cheesecakes


Cheesecake Ba-Nana’s Pudding. Photo courtesy of Peteet’s Cheesecakes.

If you’re looking for a sweet-tooth indulging dessert after that delicious meal, head over to Peteet’s Cheesecakes. They have more than 20 flavors of cheesecake, like strawberry-banana, red velvet and “Superman” cheesecake. That’s not to mention all of their cookies, cobblers, pies and more! If you catch yourself there on a Saturday, you HAVE TO try Ba-Nana’s Pudding.

Where are your favorite places to go in Oak Park? Let us know on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram!

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