Originally designed to be an opulent and exclusive country club on Lake Michigan, the South Shore Cultural Center is now part of the Chicago Park District. Architect Benjamin Marshall (who also designed the Drake Hotel, Edgewater Beach Hotel, and the ill-fated Iroquois Theater) designed the South Shore Country Club when Lawrence Heyworth, president of the Chicago Athletic Club, wanted space in a “country” setting. The club’s original building was built in 1905, but the club outgrew it, according to the Chicago Park District. In 1916, the present lakefront building was constructed in the Mediterranean Revival style. Even as the demographics of the South Shore neighborhood shifted, becoming a Jewish community and then a mostly Black community, the club excluded Jewish people and Black people from membership. The club closed in the 1970s and was ultimately purchased and rehabbed by the city’s park district. Today, the property includes a park, golf course, and beach, and the building houses various programs for the arts, including music, dance, visual arts, ornate event spaces, and more. It was also the location of future-President Barack Obama and Michelle Obama’s wedding reception.