Deerfield is a village in Lake County, Illinois, United States. A portion of the village is in Cook County, Illinois, United States. The population was 18,420 at the 2000 census. It is one of the suburbs that make up Chicago's North Shore.
Deerfield is home to the headquarters of Walgreens, Baxter Healthcare, APAC Customer Services, Fortune Brands, Takeda Pharmaceuticals, and Così, and was at one time the headquarters of the Sara Lee Corporation. Deerfield High School is one of the top public schools in the state. Trinity International University, an evangelical Christian university, is located in Deerfield.
There were 6,420 households out of which 43.9% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 73.0% were married couples living together, 6.0% had a female householder with no husband present, and 19.6% were non-families. 17.8% of all households were made up of individuals and 8.6% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.81 and the average family size was 3.21.
In the village the population was spread out with 30.6% under the age of 18, 3.7% from 18 to 24, 26.8% from 25 to 44, 26.0% from 45 to 64, and 13.0% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 40 years. For every 100 females, there are 93.3 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 88.5 males.
The median income for a household in the village was $107,194, and the median income for a family was $118,683. Males had a median income of $90,226 versus $48,450 for females. The per capita income for the village was $50,664. About 1.3% of families and 1.6% of the population were below the poverty line, including 2.1% of those under age 18 and 1.8% of those age 65 or over.
In a 1917 design by Thomas E. Talmadge of the American Institute of Architects, Deerfield served as the center for a new proposed capital city of the United States. By that year, all of Deerfield's original farms had been converted either to residential areas or golf courses.
On May 26, 1944, a US Navy plane crashed in Deerfield on the current site of the Deerfield Public Library, killing Ensign Milton C. Pickens. Following World War II, a portion of Waukegan Road (Route 43) that runs through Deerfield has been designated a Blue Star Memorial Highway.
On June 27, 1962, ground was broken by Kitchens of Sara Lee (now Sara Lee Corporation) for construction of the world's largest bakery. The plant, located on the current site of Coromandel Condominiums on Kates Road, began production in 1964 using state-of-the-art materials handling and production equipment. It was billed as the world's first industrial plant with a fully automated production control system. President Ronald Reagan visited the plant in 1985. The plant closed in 1990 as Sara Lee consolidated production in Tarboro, North Carolina. By 1991, headquarters employees had moved to downtown Chicago. In 2007, Sara Lee severed its final tie to its former home town with the closure of the Sara Lee Bakery Outlet Store.
In 1982, Deerfield began an experiment with a community farm. Two hundred residents applied for plots on a three-acre community garden. The project had such a strong initial success that the village opened additional community farms on vacant land in the village.
On December 19, 2005, the village board passed a strict anti-smoking ordinance. The law bans smoking in all public places, including businesses, bars, restaurants, parks, parade routes, public assemblies, and within from any of the above.
On October 4, 2007, Deerfield resident Rhoni Reuter, the pregnant girlfriend of former Chicago Bears cornerback Shaun Gayle, was murdered in the first homicide committed in Deerfield in 38 years. The murder occurred at Poplar and Elm Streets close by to Alan B. Shepard Middle School; as a result, the school and Deerfield High School were "locked down" for part of the day.
In November, 2007, BusinessWeek.com listed Deerfield third in a list of the 50 best places to raise children. The rankings were based on five factors, including school test scores, cost of living, recreational and cultural activities, number of schools and risk of crime. Deerfield ranked behind Groesbeck, Ohio and Western Springs, IL.
Over the past 30 years, however, Deerfield has seen a large influx of Jews and, more recently, Asians and Greeks, giving the community a more diverse ethnic makeup.
Located in front of Kipling Elementary School is the Deerfield Historic Village. This outdoor museum consists of five historic buildings and includes the headquarters for the Deerfield Historical Society.
The Historic Village includes the Caspar Ott House, considered to be the oldest building in Lake County, built in 1837. It was restored by Bob Przewlocki. The George Luther House (1847) now includes the Society's offices and displays on rural post offices and village stores. The Bartle Sacker Farm (1854) houses a collection of farm implements. The fourth building is a 1905 Carriage House. While those buildings are all original (although relocated from their original sites), the little red school house is a replica of a one-room school house. Each year, all fourth graders in district 109 spend a day learning in the school house.
Free concerts are also held across the street from Deerfield Square in the shopping area known as Red Star Plaza.
Along the border with Northbrook, Deerbrook Mall opened in the late 1960s. It includes both an indoor and outdoor shopping area. Near Deerbrook Mall is Cadwell Corners, a small outdoor mall that carries the village's original name.
In 1979 Deerfield created a "No-Kissing Zone" at the local train station in response to complaints about traffic jams at the station caused by couples taking too long to kiss their goodbyes at the drop-off point. The "No-Kissing" signs (patterned after international traffic signs) attracted national attention and were featured in 'Time Magazine and ABC's "AM America" (precursor to "Good Morning America"). A Deerfield family appearing on the game show "Family Feud" presented Richard Dawson with replica pins of the signs.
In the 1980s Deerfield and other North Shore communities inspired the teen movies of director/screen writer John Hughes. The fictional Shermer, Illinois, included elements of Deerfield and neighboring Northbrook and Highland Park.
A number of media properties have been set and/or filmed Deerfield, including television drama Once and Again, comedy Married... with Children and portions of reality show American High. In film, the Deerfield train station is shown in the film Risky Business, and Stolen Summer used various parts of the village.
Deerfield also figures in the musical Dear Edwina, written by Marcy Heisler, a Deerfield native, and Zina Goldrich. The fictional protagonist lives at 427 Birchwood Avenue in Deerfield Although the play is set in Paw Paw, Michigan much of it (including the address) is inspired by Heisler's hometown, Deerfield.
The Chicago Bulls' current practice facility, the Berto Center, is in Deerfield. Previously, the Bulls practiced at Multiplex, a Deerfield health club, which has since closed. A number of Bulls players and staff have subsequently lived in Deerfield, including Kirk Hinrich and Phil Jackson.
At one time District 109 contained as many as eight Elementary schools, however, Maplewood, Woodland Park, Briarwood, and Cadwell (originally known as Deerfield Grammar School) were all closed beginning in the 1970s through the 1980s and their students absorbed by the four larger, remaining Elementary schools.