Although we did not have any trouble at all with parking while staying in Oak Park, I must give this warning. We happened to stay in a hotel with free, safe parking. Thus, we parked our car as soon as we arrived, and did not use our car until it was time to leave Oak Park. See Photo of the Parking Permit Card Given to Us by the Carleton of Oak Park
NOTE: There is an OVERNIGHT BAN ON PARKING on the streets throughout Oak park.
We had to have a card of verification placed on our dashboard while parked in the hotel parking lot so that we would not be ticketed. Our hotel had five parking lots [most of them were small].
There are exceptions to the no parking overnight rule but for one night only. An overnight pass does not allow daytime parking or override daytime restrictions that may exist. Overnight parking passes for municipal lots may be granted for a nominal daily fee.
There are several Village parking facilities and lots, and many are free on the weekends. There is also metered parking in some areas but restrictions of time apply.
I found everything in Oak Park to be a little on the expensive side from the one hour tours that cost $12, the special home tours that are $85, to the expensively priced Frank Lloyd Wright merchandise in the Ginko gift shop, to the meal that we had at Petersen's. I guess it's the price you pay for the Frank Lloyd Wright name in most instances.
By the way, we saw one of the Frank Lloyd Wright homes, I think it was the Heurtley House on Forest, advertised for sale in the window of a local realtor, a mere $5.75 million! I don't even want to contemplate how much the real estate taxes are nor how much money it would take to heat the house or keep it in accordance with the standards of a National Historic Landmark!
If you are interested in purchasing a Wright home, here's a website that lists the ones for sale ;-)
As tempting as it might be to drive straight over from downtown to Oak Park on Chicago Avenue, I wouldn't recommend it especially not to someone not used to driving through bad neighborhoods. There's a couple mile stretch that goes through the Austin neighborhood, one of the worst in the city. We did drive it yesterday on our way back into the city and didn't have any problems but it's not somewhere I would want to have a car break down or get into an accident. Do yourself a favor and take the safer route, highway 290 to the Harlem exit, or take the el.