In 1987, Hughie O'Hara, the president of Irish heritage society the Shamrock American Club, decided that Chicago's Irish deserved a building all their own. So O'Hara raised enough money to buy the old Mayfair College, on the corner of Wilson and Knox Avenues, and named it the Irish American Heritage Center. In the last decade, the converted school has been filled from basement to rafters with all things Irish. On the ground floor, the walls are painted with snaky Celtic designs, the bathrooms are labeled in English (Men) and Gaelic (Fir), and the gymnasium echoes with the clomping heels of children learning traditional Irish dances.
At the far end of the floor is the center