Wauconda is located 37 miles northwest of Chicago's Loop in Lake County. The current estimated population is 13,500; nearby towns include Barrington, Cary, Lake Zurich, Mundelein, and Fox River Grove. Wauconda was once a popular vacation spot for Chicagoans who sought to escape the city and enjoy the waters of the village's Bangs... Show all »
Wauconda is located 37 miles northwest of Chicago's Loop in Lake County. The current estimated population is 13,500; nearby towns include Barrington, Cary, Lake Zurich, Mundelein, and Fox River Grove. Wauconda was once a popular vacation spot for Chicagoans who sought to escape the city and enjoy the waters of the village's Bangs Lake. The village was named "Waconda," meaning "spirit water," by LaFayette Mills, who was a teacher in the town's little red school. Mr. Mills had read a story of Indian life in the West, and was impressed with the part of the story that spoke of a small body of water named "Waconda," which in Indian means spirit water. Mills suggested the name to the people of the village, and the town commissioners approved the name. Today, the residents of Wauconda enjoy a small-town lifestyle that features easy access to downtown Chicago via Metra commuter train service from the nearby Barrington train station. Chicago's O'Hare International Airport is 32 miles away, and many travelers also fly out of Mitchell International Airport in Milwaukee. Local corporate and privately-owned aircraft are based at Waukegan Regional Airport, northeast of Wauconda. Wauconda School District #118 oversees five schools including three elementary schools, one middle school and one high school. Robert Crown Grade School, Wauconda Grade School and the Cotton Creek School in Island Lake focus on basic reading, language arts and mathematics skills, augmented by music, art and physical education. Programs for gifted students are available. At Wauconda Middle School, the basics are also emphasized, and there are also intramural sports, and special interest clubs and activities. At Wauconda High School, students can choose from among 140 academic and career courses, including several honors courses and advanced placement courses in calculus and biology. Extensive business courses are open to students planning a business career, and training in several trades including heating/air conditioning, automotive mechanics, body and fender repair, graphic arts, and more is also available. Housing comes in a range of sizes, styles and prices. Small ranch-style and raised ranch homes dominate. In other sections of town, contemporary homes mix with those that were built in the early decades of the twentieth century; in addition, an area of new mid-sized homes sits overlooking the campus of Wauconda High School. Close to the downtown area is Library Hill, a large complex of town homes, and to the east, Lake Pointe Condominiums that were built on the shores of Bangs Lake. Executive-style residences, attractive mid-sized homes and small cottages also are located in the vicinity of Bangs Lake. Villagers have many leisure activities from which to choose. They can spend time shopping in Wauconda, or drive to Gurnee Mills, the world's largest factory outlet mall; relax in one of Wauconda Park District's well-equipped parks; swim, boat, or fish in Bangs Lake; golf at one of over a dozen public golf courses in the area, or enjoy the rare plants and birds at the Wauconda Bog, a national natural landmark. « Show less
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