Average house price: $296,353
Transportation * * * (out of 4) Metra stations dot the neighborhood; quick access to I-57 and Dan Ryan Expressway.
Schools * * * Numerous public and private options, including the high-performing Vanderpoel academy
Shopping * * * Pockets of stores and restaurants throughout the neighborhood, with a heavy concentration along 95th Street; the Evergreen Park mall is nearby.
Plus: Share a quintessential Chicago summer moment at the Original Rainbow Cone (9233 S. Western Ave.; 773-238-7075), where you can savor the five-flavor ice-cream treat that’s been around for more than 80 years.

Over the course of 31 years, the South Side Irish Parade in Beverly evolved from a charming tradition into a magnet for drunken misbehavior. This year the event went back to its roots, becoming a family-oriented festival of Irish culture, sans parade. Hard-partiers may have been disappointed, but the switch reflected what is nice about this hilly, historic Southwest Side neighborhood: It is a community of families—both those who have been here for a couple of generations and those who have moved in more recently.

The residential streets of Beverly are lined with a surprising variety of older housing, including everything from stone mansions to humble bungalows. Five Metra stations serve the area, so nearly all of those houses are within walking distance of public transportation to the Loop. Shopping and dining, while not up to the standards of the retail-dense North Side neighborhoods, are an amiable mix of eccentric one-offs, such as Jimmy Jamm Sweet Potato Pies, and big chains, such as Borders. Three Catholic grade schools and three public grade schools—including the Vanderpoel Humanities Academy—serve Beverly.

Once a summer, bicyclists compete in the Beverly Hills Cycling Classic, a one-mile loop through the streets. That’s not the only time things get lively: The Beverly Arts Center, housed inside an eight-year-old, $8-million facility at 111th Street and Western Avenue, keeps a busy calendar.

Dennis tours Beverly with Rochelle Vayo Adkinson of WGN and CLTV’s HomesPlus.