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CLUB History

The Woman’s Club of Wilmette was established in 1891 at a time when most of the roads in the recently incorporated Village were still unpaved. During our club’s 125+ year history, our members have been instrumental in creating, developing and supporting many of the institutions that make Wilmette the vibrant community it is today.

The Park District was launched when club members donated equipment and a bathhouse for Wilmette’s bathing beach. The Wilmette Public Library grew from books salvaged and managed by the club after the 1899 Elmwood Library Fire. Other organizations begun in the clubhouse include the Family Service Center in 1913, PTA/PTO in 1915, the Wilmette Red Cross Unit in 1939 and the League of Women Voters of Wilmette in 1924.  The Club held its first Rummage sale in 1967 and hosted New Trier Extension evening programs beginning in 1974. 

In an effort to support our local First Responders, between 2001 and 2003, the Club donated 10 defibrillators to the Wilmette Fire Department and one to WJHS.  The Club's 2003-2004  Benches to Benefit public art display of 25 decorated benches resulted in $30,000 of auction proceeds being equally distributed to Family Service Center, Youth Connection and the Warming House.  In response to devastating flooding, the Club donated $20,000 to Village of Wilmette's 2008-2009 Tree Replacement Program.

Today, the Club continues to raise funds to support local non-profits and will shortly be reopening the clubhouse. Over the last 10 years, we have donated almost $400,000 in cash, goods, services and space to community organizations. In addition to being the home of the Woman's Club, for many years the clubhouse has been the hub of activity for our village. The clubhouse has provided space for many public events such as Go Green Matters, Taste of Wilmette, as well as private weddings, non-profit and corporate events. 

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