USO Midway Center Grand Reopening

The USO is the leading nonprofit dedicated to strengthening the well-being of the people serving in America’s military and their families. Since 1941, the USO has been by the side of service members throughout their military service. Impactful support is provided through our 250+ locations around the world.

The USO Midway Center located at Midway International Airport in Chicago, Illinois first opened in August 2003. There are over 80 dedicated volunteers that support the USO Midway Center to make sure it is available to our service members 7 days a week from 8:00 am – 8:00 pm. The Center provides unique amenities to those who serve, including a stocked kitchenette, a computer, printers, free Wi-Fi access, books, magazines, and a lounge to watch television and movies or play video games.

On January 17, 2024, the USO Midway Center celebrated a Grand Reopening with the Chicago Department of Aviation to unveil the upgraded USO Center in Concourse C. The completed renovations expand the lounge’s capacity by 30% and include fresh furniture, updated flooring, new appliances, and revamped interiors, position the Center to serve as a home away from home for traveling service members and their families for decades to come.

Updated USO Midway Center | Photo credit USO

“Traveling can be a busy time for many, it is especially so for service members and their families,” said Terry Lemke, Center Operations and Programs Manager, USO, Chicago Metro Area. “The remodeled USO Midway Center is a great place for military passengers to relax, unwind and recharge during their travels, and it also represents the appreciation and gratitude Chicago has for our brave men and women in uniform.”

The USO also operates a second Center in Midway Airport in baggage claim, serving sailors from Naval Station Great Lakes in route to duty assignments worldwide. Additionally, the USO operates centers at Terminals 2 and 3 at O’Hare International Airport, serving hundreds of thousands of military travelers annually. The USO operates seven centers in Illinois offering specialized in-person and virtual programs to all active duty, reservists, National Guard, military spouses, and dependent youth. Together, our network of hundreds of Illinois-based volunteers donates nearly 20,000 hours (about 2 and a half years) of service annually in service of our brave men and women of the United States Armed Forces.

The USO Midway Center hosted more than 29,000 guests last year. In 2023, the center launched a series of programs, including a Super Bowl watch party, holiday celebrations and military branch celebrations, such as the U.S. Navy’s 248th birthday on Oct. 13. The USO Midway Center currently has a staff of 75 volunteers, some of whom travel as far as an hour to be of service to those who serve.

“At Chicago’s airports, we are proud to welcome the men and women who serve our country each and every day, and we thank them for their service,” said CDA Commissioner Jamie L. Rhee. “On behalf the Chicago aviation community, I thank the USO and their volunteers for this new investment in support of our service members, and the organization’s continued commitment to those who serve and their families.”

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