Illinois : Safety by City
- Arlington Heights
- Crystal Lake
- Des Plaines
- East St Louis
- Fairview Heights
- Granite City
- Mount Prospect
- Oak Lawn
- Rock Island
- Tinley Park
Tinley Park, Illinois beckons you to live “Life Amplified” in a rich music scene.
Being that this is an article about safety, I always start with the police department research and was scratching my head about why each bullet point was a music note.
I quickly found the answer.
Tinley Park is 30 miles southwest of Chicago and a popular suburb with nearly 56,000 people.
It’s technically a village, as many suburban communities are here, which really means nothing more than what state laws were in place when it was incorporated.
It won’t make a difference to you as a traveler if you stay in a city, town, or village.
The city tries to brand itself as “Music City, Illinois”, but I can tell you the Google algorithm hasn’t caught up because every search for Music City, even including “Illinois”, simply tells me how to get to Nashville, Tennessee.
The tourist site for Tinley Park is built into the city’s website, so you won’t get confused by any reference to Music City.
Tinley Park sits at the crossroads of two major interstates, which makes it a great stopping point even if you are headed elsewhere in the Chicago area.
The groupings of hotels are near that interchange and you won’t find hotels within the city.. er.. village.
Warnings & Dangers in Tinley Park
OVERALL RISK : LOW
The real music to your ears in Tinley Park will be the low crime rates. There's a low risk here, even though some major headline-making stories have happened here over the years. Tinley Park barely makes the list of the Top 50 Safest Cities in Illinois, but it does make the list.
TRANSPORT & TAXIS RISK : LOW
Two Metra rail line stations are in Tinley Park with easy access to downtown Chicago. They aren't open past 1:00 pm, so plan your trip earlier in the day. You can readily get taxis and rideshares as well.
PICKPOCKETS RISK : LOW
There is a low risk here with a one in 116 risks of being a theft victim. The risk might go up if you go to an event at the Hollywood Casino Amphitheater with large crowds around or one of the many music venues and festivals in the city. I have what I call my "crowd purse", which is a small cross-body purse that only holds the necessities and is always secured to my body.
NATURAL DISASTERS RISK : LOW
The potential for extreme weather exists every season, and for people who live here it's just a way of life, but a tourist who isn't used to the threats might be a bit overwhelmed to read that. Here's how it breaks down. Spring is "tornado season", so expect an increase in thunderstorms that can produce tornadoes. The risk goes down but still exists throughout summer and fall. Winters are going to bring snowfall, an average of two and a half feet. Temperatures can get dangerously cold. There isn't a risk here that doesn't come with adequate warning. It's an average risk on any given day, but when there's a weather watch in place, the risk goes up to medium.
MUGGING RISK : LOW
Since 2017, the robbery rate has been cut in half in this city, with just six robberies reported in 2020. There's a low risk here, but don't let that put your guard down. This is still a major metropolitan area, so there will always be a certain amount of risk.
TERRORISM RISK : LOW
While Tinley Park itself isn't a hard target, the whole Chicago area is as it is one of the largest population centers in the country. Especially at big concerts, it's important to follow the "See Something, Say Something" please from local and federal law enforcement. That means reporting anything that seems strange to you.
SCAMS RISK : LOW
Most of the scams reported on the police department website were targeted at locals, so there's a low risk against tourists. You should use caution when trying to buy tickets for shows here. Only use the direct vendor website and avoid scalpers or third-party websites.
WOMEN TRAVELERS RISK : LOW
There's a low risk for women in Tinley Park, but there's potential with the party atmosphere that pops up at night and on weekends. You should always use caution when you are out drinking and don't ever accept a drink that you didn't see opened or poured. The sexual assault rate in Tinley Park is nearly three and a half times lower than the national average.
TAP WATER RISK : LOW
The 2021 Water Quality Report from public works in Tinley Park shows there were no violations and all water tests met the required standards. The city is also investing more than $30 million to update the water treatment facility and transportation lines to keep the water safe for years to come.
Safest Places to Visit in Tinley Park
Downtown Tinley Park is a great place to start, with shopping, dining, and spa services available.
This is also where The Village is, which hosts events, parades, and festivals throughout the year.
There’s even a Cruise Night with spectacular old and new cars revved up for your enjoyment.
Get your Instagram ready for the amazing pictures of the benches in Tinley Park.
As part of a public art project, the benches are intricately designed and are eye-popping.
Put Forest View Farms on your list of things to do, no matter what season.
You can get horseback rides, go on a hay or sleigh ride, or just pet the ponies.
There’s a petting zoo available and it’s just $5 per person, but you do need to make reservations.
Be sure to get a glimpse of the white stallions while you’re there.
Bartel Grassland is on the eastern edge of Tinley Park, and it’s open throughout the year as long as the sun is up.
You can hike, see wildflowers, do some birdwatching, or even cross-country ski in the winter.
Need a rainy day or an indoor option on a day that’s really cold or hot?
Odyssey Funworld is a kid’s imagination that comes to life with plenty of arcade games, mini-golf, bumper boats, laser tag, and so much more.
Hollywood Casino Amphitheater is where big-name acts come to perform.
You can see a list of upcoming events on the venue’s website.
The Hollywood Casino itself is in Joliet but took the naming rights to the venue, which used to be called First Midwest Bank Amphitheatre, and might still have that name on some tourism websites.
Places to Avoid in Tinley Park
The area west and north of where the two interstates meet here is the highest crime area, but that’s not saying much in an area that doesn’t have a lot of crime.
There are no bad parts of town or neighborhoods to avoid here.
You should do diligent research on the surrounding cities to make sure you are comfortable with their respective levels of safety.
That’s why our website goes so in-depth into these other areas.
One note on the state’s name – the “s” is silent, so it’s pronounced Ill-in-noy, not Ill-in-noise.
Saying it wrong will punctuate that you are a tourist.
As with any safe city, it never means you should let your guard down or leave a car unlocked.
Cities like this stay safe because of good personal safety habits, positive interaction with the police, and citizens/visitors who report suspicious activity.
Safety Tips for Traveling to Tinley Park
- Download the Chicago Southland Trails App. You can see the walking and bicycle trails throughout the region along with the attractions along the way. You’ll be able to see which streets are bicycle-friendly, too.
- With so many outdoor areas in the Tinley Park vicinity, it’s not going to be uncommon to see a coyote. It sounds scary, but it’s really not. Coyotes want very little to do with people and will only attack if provoked. You should keep small pets inside at night and if a coyote is nearby while you’re walking a pet, pick up the animal and make a lot of noise to scare the coyote off. Also, avoid the trails at dawn or dusk, as that’s when coyotes are most active.
- If you are staying with friends or relatives, don’t park on the street overnight. You can get a street parking permit for up to three nights in a row, but you have to request that through the police department. Otherwise, you risk getting a ticket or being towed.
- You can get emergency notifications for weather events and other community threats by downloading the CodeRED app. It’s important to stay aware of risks while you’re visiting a new area and this is a perfect way to do that without always having to check news and emergency management websites.
- There is also a weekly community newsletter you can sign up for on the city website. This will allow you to see the community events happening closer to your time of the visit and get a better feel for the community and the dining options.
- Tinley Park is very active on social media and even has a YouTube channel with information about the community, new businesses opening, and safety tips for visitors. It’s worth spending some time reviewing the tourism videos to get comfortable with this community.
- For anyone who plans to add fishing to their itinerary while visiting Tinley Park, you’ll need a fishing license from the state of Illinois. The Department of Natural Resources issues the licenses and you can actually take care of that online before you even get to Tinley Park. Your license from your hometown won’t suffice here.
- If you are using public transportation while you are visiting, you must be aware of your surroundings while riding the train. It’s easy to put on a music list and lose focus while wearing headphones, but that could make you more of a target. Police recommend keeping one headphone or earbud in at a time and keeping the other ear open for anything suspicious or concerning.
- You might hear or read about the “Lane Byrant Shooting” while you’re visiting Tinley Park. This is a cold case and brutal crime from 2008, when a shooter took five lives inside a local Lane Bryant store. The suspect remains on the loose and police are still hopeful new information will come in about this, so that’s why it’s so prominently displayed on the department’s website. Two new detectives have recently been assigned to the case.
- Car thefts are increasing in the south part of Chicago, and that includes Tinley Park. In mid-2022, police and local leaders even held a carjacking seminar for residents. The event was live-streamed on the “Village of Tinley Park Illinois Government” Facebook page, so you can review that to get the most updated safety tips to avoid being a victim.
So... How Safe Is Tinley Park Really?
I’ve double and triple-checked the crime rates here because some sensational crime headlines still come from Tinley Park.
For example, in May of 2022, a father was accused of beating his 17-year-old daughter to death because he wouldn’t let her go to prom.
I’m not even going into more detail because the account is quite gruesome, but it’s information you can easily find elsewhere.
Another was a robbery of a man walking down the street at 4:00 am, and even though he handed over his wallet and money, he was still shot at and had a bullet grazing wound on his head.
However, there’s no arguing with the crime data and many of the crimes are domestic situations.
There’s a low chance that a visitor is going to be a random target, but it can and does happen.
Just not very frequently.
Here’s how the risk breaks down in Tinley Park:
- Violent Crime: 1 in 1365 (the majority of cities I’ve researched are generally between 1 in 200 and 1 in 500, so that’s a very low risk comparatively)
- Robbery: 1 in 7000
- Theft: 1 in 116
You should always be on your guard in any new community and researching ahead of time like you are doing by reading this article, is helpful to take the best safety steps.
How Does Tinley Park Compare?
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- Visas - If you are coming from outside the U.S. you'll need a Visa and that process can take up to five months, so prepare well ahead of time. You will use a Visa when you arrive in the country but won't need it to travel between different cities.
- Currency - The U.S. Dollar here is the cash used, and while there might be some cyber currency options, it's best to stick with credit card purchases that can be monitored, tracked, and set up for fraud alerts. There's little need for cash here, and even if you like to tip in cash, you can ask a server if they have a Venmo for tipping. That has become very popular in the past few years.
- Weather - You should prepare for an extreme in all seasons. Summers are going to be humid and you won't be able to control your sweating. I'm a Midwest girl myself, and despite all the great things about it, I could do without the humidity on a beautiful day. A hoodie or jacket is great, even in summer, because the weather can change often and it's not unusual to have a few cold spells in the summer.
- Airports - Midway International Airport is the closest option, at just 24 minutes away. The bigger O'Hare International Airport is just under an hour away, but plan to sit in traffic. Both airports are great options with a lot of direct flights.
- Travel Insurance - With so many variables in the weather and flight patterns, it's a good idea to get travel insurance for a trip to Tinley Park, Illinois.
Tinley Park Weather Averages (Temperatures)
Average High/Low Temperature
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