In and Around Park Forest Week of February 25, 2013

Mark and Gabe Linsley register for Park Forest Baseball with Bob Weicker
Mark Linsley of Beecher (left) registers his son Gabe for the 2013 season of Park Forest Baseball Saturday at Village Hall. Bob Weicker of PFBB was on hand to volunteer. (PHOTO SUPPLIED)

Park Forest, IL—(ENEWSPF)—February 25, 2013. The Special Primary Election for the 2nd Congressional District will be held on Tuesday, February 26. For information about voting locations and times, visit: Be sure to cast your vote on Tuesday in this very important primary election.

If your club, organization or local business will be holding activities or events in our community during the upcoming week, please send an e-mail to [email protected] with the details. Submission deadline is noon on Friday of each week.

Village of Park Forest

Village of Park Forest

Village Board Meetings

The Board of Trustees will meet on Monday, February 25 at 7 p.m. at Village Hall, 350 Victory Drive. In addition, a Saturday morning Rules Meeting will be held on March 2 at 10 a.m. at Village Hall. Residents are encouraged to attend. Board meetings air live on cable access channels (Channel 4 for Comcast subscribers and Channel 99 for AT&T subscribers) as well as on the Village web site at

To view previously held Board Meetings, visit the Village’s web site at: 20Government and click on the date of the meeting you wish to watch.

Park Forest Non-Partisan Committee

Candidate Forums

The Park Forest Non-Partisan Committee will host Candidates forums on the following dates:

  • Sunday, March 3 at 1:30 p.m. at the Park Forest Public Library, 400 Lakewood Boulevard – Library Candidates Only
  • Sunday, March 10 at 1:30 p.m. at Park Forest Village Hall, 350 Victory Drive – Village Candidates Only.
  • Sunday, March 24 at 1 p.m. at Park Forest Village Hall, 350 Victory Drive – Library Trustees and Village Trustee Candidates

The Candidate’s Forum that was held on Sunday, February 17 can be viewed at: Candidate Forums.
A replay of the February 17 Forum will also be rebroadcast on cable access channels at 6 p.m. on Wednesday, February 17.

Black History Month

Park Forest Public Library, 400 Lakewood Boulevard, Park Forest

Potpourri of Lectures to Feature Bonnie Blue – Thursday, February 28

The Potpourri of Lectures on Thursday, February 28 at 10:30 a.m. in the Park Forest Public Library’s Ringering Room, will feature Bonnie Blue, author of ‘Emmet Till’s Secret Witness: FBI Confidential Source Speaks.’ After a 35-year journey, finally the true story behind the lynching of Emmett Till has been told. This lynching caught the attention of the world in 1955. At a time when the United States was advocating democracy and being held as the pillar for freedom and justice for all, our country suffered a self-inflicted black eye. The world watched as international media reported that justice for an innocent Black boy, so heinously lynched, went unpunished. The author will also show that the Wolf Whistle was not the reason that the boy was lunched. The surprising truth from the mouth of the leader of the lynch mob, on his death bed, was finally told. This ‘truth’ is relevant and active even today; from the everyday people on the street to the White House. The event is free and open to the public. Refreshments will be served.

Governors State University (GSU), 1 University Parkway, University Park

‘Crossroads of Freedom’

The theme of GSU’s Black History Month 2013 is ‘Crossroads of Freedom’ marking two important anniversaries in the history of African Americans and the United States – the sesquicentennial of the Emancipation Proclamation and the 50th anniversary of the March on Washington. Black History Month events at GSU the week of February 25 include:

  • Tuesday, February 26 from Noon to 4 p.m. in the Hall of Governors – ‘Test Your Knowledge of African American History’ event sponsored by Student Life.
  • Tuesday, February 26 from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. in Engbretson Hall – GSU Students on the Move – a Civic Engagement in Action Presentation. This event is sponsored by Student Life.
  • Tuesday, February 26 from 2 p.m. to 6 p.m. in the Hall of Governors – Natural Hair, Health, and Beauty Conference. This event is sponsored by the Black Student Union.
  • Tuesday, February 26 from 4:30 p.m. to 7 p.m. at the Naperville Education Center, 2244 W. 95th Street, Naperville – “Intersection Identities – Race and Beyond” an open class. Interested persons should RSVP to Professor Crystal Blount at [email protected].
  • Wednesday, February 27 from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. in Engbretson hall – Black history Month Film Series presents ‘Crimson Tide.’ This event is sponsored by the Academic Resource Center, College of Arts and Sciences, and the GSU Intellectual Life Committee.
  • Thursday, February 28 from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. in Sherman Hall – GSU’s First ‘Black Women Rock’ Awards Ceremony honoring African American women who are making or have made strides in a variety of areas.

Unless otherwise noted, all events are presented free of charge and are open to the public.

Prairie State College (PSC), 202 S. Halsted Street, Chicago Heights

The 9th Annual PSC Idol Contest – Thursday, February 28

On Thursday, February 28 from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. in the Conference Center Auditorium, the 9th Annual PSC Idol Contest sponsored by the Black Student Union will take place. For additional information, visit the Student Leadership Center in room 1260 or call 708-709-3910 or visit and view the events calendar.

Arts & Entertainment

Park Forest Public Library, 400 Lakewood Boulevard, Park Forest

This Week’s Events at the Park Forest Public Library

The following events will be held this week at the Park Forest Public Library:

  • Monday, February 25 at 10:30 a.m. – Imagine! Create! Participate! — This program is designed for children ages 3-5 and will include not only a story, but the use of their imaginations. It’s designed to help children develop their creativity while interacting and connecting to other children in the community. Registration required for groups, please call 708-748-3731 ex. 31.
  • Monday, February 25 at 12 p.m. – Friends Book Discussion: "The Thirteenth Tale" by Diane Setterfield. You may check out the book from the Patron Services desk three weeks in advance of the discussion date. The club will continue to meet the forth Monday of the month.
  • Monday, February 25 at 6 p.m. — Classic Movie Monday Nights: ‘Beach Blanket Bingo’ — In the fourth of the highly successful Frankie and Annette beach party movies, a motorcycle gang led by Eric Von Zipper kidnaps singing star Sugar Kane managed by Bullets, who hires sky-diving surfers Steve and Bonnie from Big Drop for a publicity stunt. With the usual gang of kids and a mermaid named Lorelei.
  • Monday, February 25 at 6 p.m. — Guys Read Activity Club — Take the pledge and find out – this isn’t your little sister’s book club! Guys Read is a national program started by Jon Sciezska especially for GUYS. Every month, we’ll read a story that will peak your interest and do activities based on the stories. We meet on the Last Monday of the month.
  • Tuesday, February 26 at 10:30 a.m. – Movement & Me — Come in and enjoy time with your preschooler during this class combining movement with adventure and stories. Exercise is a key to living a healthy lifestyle. In this class parents and caregivers are able to move with their children while having a great time. (Ages 3-5). Registration required for groups, please call 708-748-3731 ex. 31.
  • Tuesday, February 26 at 6:30 p.m. – P.J. Story Time — Wear your pajamas & come join us for stories, crafts & games. Registration required for groups, please call 708-748-3731 ex. 31.
  • Wednesday, February 27 at 10:30 a.m. — Art Club (Ages 2 – 5) — Do you love art? Well this club is for you and all creative kids are welcome. Come on in and join the club where you can discover new books, make wonderful art and meet new friends. Registration required for groups, please call 708-748-3731 ex. 31.
  • Wednesday, February 27 at 5 p.m. – Art Club (Grades K – 3) — Do you love art? Well this club is for you and all creative kids are welcome. Come on in and join the club where you can discover new books, make wonderful art and meet new friends. Registration required for groups, please call 708-748-3731 ex. 31.
  • Wednesday, February 27 at 6 p.m. – Art Club (Grades 4 – 6) — Do you love art? Well this club is for you and all creative kids are welcome. Come on in and join the club where you can discover new books, make wonderful art and meet new friends. Registration required for groups, please call 708-748-3731 ex. 31.
  • Wednesday, February 27 at 1 p.m. — Opera in the Afternoon: Delibes: ‘Lakme’ – ‘Lakme,’ Delibes greatest opera, is performed by Opera Australia in all its oriental glory. Starring the exquisite coloratura soprano Emma Matthews as the innocent girl priestess ‘Lakme,’ and superb tenor Aldo Di Toro as the love-struck Gerald, the story tackles religion and cross-cultural love against a backdrop of British rule in India in the mid-19th century. French conductor Emmanuel Joel-Hornak brings out the full depth of the lush, dramatic score, with familiar high points being the beautiful renditions of the well-known Flower Duet and Bell Song. Dominica Matthews adds her rich voice as Mallika and Stephen Bennett is darkly dominating as Brahmin priest Nilakantha, Lakme’s father, while Roxane Hislop is a consummate Mistress Bentson.
  • Wednesday, February 27 at 7 p.m. – Reader’s Theater – Do you love dancing, acting, and singing? Would you like to put on a show for your friends and family to see? Join us every Wednesday for Reader’s Theater, where we will bring out the artist in you! Registration required for groups, please call 708-748-3731 ex. 31.
  • Thursday, February 28 at 10:30 a.m. – Mother Goose Time — During this 30-minute session, babies and their parents will share nursery rhymes, finger plays, songs, music and age-appropriate books. For babies ages 2 and under accompanied by a parent or caregiver. Registration required for groups, please call 708-748-3731 ex. 31.
  • Thursday, February 28 at 5 p.m. – LEGO Club — Play and learn with LEGOs at the Park Forest Public Library! The creations the children make will be on display at the library. For boys and girls in Kindergarten through 5th Grade. Registration required for groups, please call 708-748-3731 ex. 31. The library is looking for donations of new or used LEGOs. Please contact the library if you would like to help with this project.
  • Thursday, February 28 at 7 p.m. — Knit Lit — Please join our brand-new discussion group for knitters and readers of knitting fiction. We will exchange stories, share our favorite book moments, and even swap knitting ideas. Read any fiction or non-fiction knitting selection and come back to join us for a great evening. Multiple book selections are available for checkout at Patron Services.
  • Friday, March 1 at 3 p.m. – Wii Games — Meet up with your friends at the Park Forest Public Library for some gaming fun. The library will provide some games — YOU bring a friend. If you have a favorite game, bring it along to teach and share. Join us after school as we take a little time to have some fun! Registration required for groups, please call 708-748-3731 ex. 3
  • Saturday, March 2 at 11 a.m. – Art Club (Grades K – 3) — Do you love art? Well this club is for you and all creative kids are welcome. Come on in and join the club where you can discover new books, make wonderful art and meet new friends. Registration required for groups, please call 708-748-3731 ex. 31.
  • Saturday, March 2 at 12 p.m. – Art Club (Grades 4 – 6) — Do you love art? Well this club is for you and all creative kids are welcome. Come on in and join the club where you can discover new books, make wonderful art and meet new friends. Registration required for groups, please call 708-748-3731 ex. 31.

For additional information, please call 708-748-3731 or visit

Freedom Hall’s Nathan Manilow Theatre, 410 Lakewood Boulevard, Park Forest

Switchback – American Roots – Celtic Soul – Tickets Now on Sale

Freedom Hall’s Senior Series will continue on Tuesday, March 12 at 11 a.m. when Switchback takes the stage. For over two decades, the musical partnership of Brian FitzGerald and Martin McCormack, known as Switchback, has been entertaining audiences around the world with the unique American Roots music blended with Celtic Soul. Tickets are $12 and can be purchase in-person at the box office, or online at For additional information, call 708-747-0580.

Hank and My Honky Tonk Heroes – Tickets Now on Sale

On Saturday, March 23 at 7:30 p.m., Freedom Hall will present ‘Hand and My Honky Tonk Heroes.’ This nostalgic look at Hank Williams and his influence on country music is amazing. Jason Petty pays tribute to those who influenced Hank and those Hank influenced. Don’t miss Jason’s Obie Award winning performance as he brings Hank’s music back to life in this insightful and energetic show. Audiences and critics alike were taken back by Petty’s amazing acting ability in his portrayal of Hank Williams. The New York Post stated it best, “At times it sees as if Petty is not just offering an impression of Williams, but channeling his ghost.” Tickets are $24 and can be purchase in-person at the box office, or online at For additional information, call 708-747-0580.

Park Forest Historical Society, Park Forest

Step Back into the 1950s Valentine’s Day Exhibit at the Park Forest House Museum

Throughout February, the 1950s Park Forest House Museum, 141 Forest Boulevard, will be decorated with vintage valentines and decorations. The on-room classroom featured in the Museum will be decorated for a 1950s Valentine’s Day party with crepe paper candy baskets, and construction paper heart-shaped valentine ’mailboxes’ on each desk. Red honeycomb, puffy hearts and vintage valentines are on display throughout the house. Take a break from the hustle and bustle of 21st century and revisit your past in this gem of a museum, just down the street. The museum is open Wednesdays and Saturdays in December from 10:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m., or by appointment. The admission is $5 for adults; 12 and under are free. The museum tour is free with the purchase of a Marshall Field’s Brick. Park Forest related gift ideas are available at the museum and in the online store at Convenient street parking is available in front of the museum. For additional information, call 708-481-4252.

Park Forest Plaza Print for Sale

Annabelle Gould’s print of the Park Forest Plaza is available for sale at the Park Forest House Museum, 141 Forest Boulevard. The vibrant print is from an original watercolor, showing kids and their moms in the Park Forest Plaza, in front of the old Holiday Theatre and Golden Hanger Shop. The print can be purchased at the House Museum during normal hours of operation on Wednesdays and Saturdays or through the Society’s online store on their website at Prints are $15 each. Online purchases also required an additional $6 fee for postage and handling. For additional information on other items for sale by the Society, visit

Salon Artists Gallery, 294 Main Street, Park Forest

‘Hearts and Flowers’ the Work of Ann Bonzani – Through February 28

The February exhibit at Salon Artists Gallery will be ‘Hearts and Flowers’ featuring the work of Ann Bonzani. The exhibit will run through February 28. The exhibit is free and open to the public. Gallery hours are Tuesday, Wednesday and Saturday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and Friday from 1:30 p.m. to 4 p.m. For additional information, call 708-833-5108 or 708-703-7806.

Tall Grass Arts Association, 367 Artists Walk, Park Forest

‘Luise Renner Retrospective’ – Through March 31

The exhibit, ‘Luise Renner Retrospective,’ will run at Tall Grass Arts Association through March 31.    The exhibit was curated by Richard Schmidt with assistance from Richard Renner.  It will feature the two and three-dimensional works of artist/illustrator Luise Renner who frequently exhibited in galleries in the Chicago area and southern suburbs.  Luise died in December of 2009 at the young age of 63. She left behind a large body of work.   This is the first time some of her works have been exhibited.  The exhibit is dedicated to her memory and presented in homage to her.   The exhibit features original paintings and custom tablecloths created by Luise. Unmounted high-quality prints (giclees) will be available for purchase. The collection displays approximately 60 works. The Tall Grass Gallery is located in Downtown Park Forest, adjacent to Village Hall.  Gallery hours are 11:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m., Tuesday through Saturday.  The Gallery is open to the public, free of charge.  For additional information, call the gallery at 708-748-3377 or visit

Center for Performing Arts, 1 University Parkway, University Park

Sing Along ‘Sound of Music’ – Tickets Now on Sale

On Saturday, March 9 at 2 p.m., get your vocal chords warmed up for this screening of the Academy Award-winning movie musical, ‘The Sound of Music’ in glorious full-screen Technicolor, and complete with subtitles so the whole audience can sing along. Come dressed as your favorite character. Audience participation kits are included with each ticket. Tickets are $15 to $25. To purchase tickets or for additional information, call the GSU Center Box Office at 708-235-2222 or visit

Orbert Davis’ Chicago Jazz Philharmonic – Tickets Now on Sale

On Sunday, March 10 at 4 p.m., music from the Emmy Award-winning soundtrack from the critically acclaimed WTTW public television documentary "DuSable to Obama: Chicago’s Black Metropolis" will be performed LIVE by the CJP Chamber Ensemble, led by Orbert Davis. The presentation will integrate video highlights from the documentary, telling a timeless story of Chicago’s African-American history through its most leading citizens, scholars, artists, politicians, and business leaders. Tickets are $30. To purchase tickets or for additional information, call the GSU Center Box Office at 708-235-2222 or visit

The Drama Group, 330 W. 202nd Street, Chicago Heights

‘The Adventures of Pinocchio’ – Tickets Now on Sale

The Drama Group Children’s Theatre production of ‘The Adventures of Pinocchio’ will run from March 20 through March 24. See the puppet who longs to be a ‘real’ boy in his many adventures. His conscience is ever present to remind him to “always tell the truth.” Good deeds and unconditional love are rewarded in the end. This one-hour attention-span-friendly children’s show will thrill young and old alike. There will be a ‘Meet & Greet’ with the characters after each show so bring your camera. Advance tickets are $6 for adults, Senior and children. Tickets at the door are $7. Groups of 25 or more can purchase tickets from $5 each. For additional information or to purchase tickets, call 708-755-3444 or visit

Prairie State College (PSC), 202 S. Halsted Street, Chicago Heights

‘Collaborative Vision: Selections from the Poetic Dialogue Project’ – Through March 7

The PSC Foundation is hosting ‘Collaborative Vision: Selections from the Poetic Dialogue Project,’ featuring collaborative works by teams of artists and poets, through Thursday, March 7 in the Christopher Art Gallery located on PSC’s Chicago Heights campus. The exhibit is free and open to the public. The Christopher Art Gallery is open from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., Monday through Thursday, and 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. on Wednesday and Thursday. Visits can also be made by appointment. For additional information about the exhibit or to make an appointment for a visit, contact the PSC Foundation at 708-709-3636.

National Veterans Art Museum, 4041 N. Milwaukee Avenue, Chicago

IN WAR Series – Through Memorial Day 2013

In light of the ongoing war in Afghanistan and the rising need for mental health care for returning veterans, the National Veterans Art Museum (NVAM) is proud to hold its third annual IN WAR series in its new location at 4041 N. Milwaukee Avenue in Chicago. The third annual INWAR series examines intergenerational trauma: the passing of mass traumas from one generation to the next. Trauma takes a profound psychological and physical toll on survivors that has ramifications for decades. For additional information about the exhibit or museum hours, visit:

Educational Lectures & Opportunities

Governors State University (GSU), 1 University Parkway, University Park

‘So You Think You Can Innovate’ – Thursday, March 7

Chart your course to the future at ‘So You Think You Can Innovate’ on Thursday, March 7 at 7 p.m. at GSU’s Center for Performing Arts. Join internationally renowned physician and scientist Roberta Ness, the author of “Innovation Generation,” as she demonstrates how to expand your ability to generate original ideas. At GSU, Dr. Ness will discuss proven techniques to unlock innovative thinking, many of which came out of an extraordinarily successful program at the University of Texas, where she is Dean of the School of Public Health. The program was the basis for “Innovation Generation.” Her tools for innovative thinking include analogy, expanding assumptions, pulling questions apart, changing your point of view, reversing your thinking, and getting the most out of multidisciplinary groups. The discussion is free and open to the public. For additional information on Dr. Ness’s appearance at GSU, call 708-534-4130.

Job Search Assistance Every Tuesday at GSU

The Mobile Workforce Center’s mobile unit will be at GSU every Tuesday, from 9:30 a.m. to noon and 1 p.m. to 3:30 p.m., parked near the university’s front entrance. Center services include resume development, access to online job boards and websites, instruction in how to conduct an online job search and improve keyboarding skills, and assistance of staff. The center is equipped with 11 computer stations with Internet access, printer, and copy machines, and is wheelchair accessible. Services are free and available to residents in all counties. For additional information, contact the Workforce Services Division of Will County at 815-727-4980.

Prairie State College (PSC), 202 S. Halsted, Chicago Heights

Economic Forecast Breakfast to Feature Spencer L. Klein – Registration Deadine Friday, March 8

Spencer L. Klein, senior portfolio manager for MB Financial Bank, will be the guest speaker at PSC Foundation Economic Forecast Breakfast being held at 7:30 a.m. on Friday, March 15 at the Olympia Fields Country Club, 2800 Country Club Drive, Olympia Fields.  A continental breakfast will be served at 7:30 a.m. followed by the featured presentation at 8:15 a.m. The cost is $25 per person, and advance registration is required no later than Friday, March 8 by calling 708-709-3636.

Opt In to Technology at PSC

You can bridge the gap between technology and a new you at PSC’s new Opt In program that consists of two computer training centers and free classes to teach basic technological skills. One location is at the Adult Training and outreach Center in Room A145 at PSC’s main campus. Hours are Monday through Thursday from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m. The other location is at the Matteson Area Center’s Computer Training Lab located at 4821 Southwick Dr., Matteson. Hours for this location are Monday through Thursday from 3:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. No matter what skill level you have or want to have, Opt In can help. Both computer labs and on-site tutors are free and open to the public. For additional information, call Lisa Zeigler at 708-709-3548 or e-mail [email protected].

Rich Township Free Basic Computer Classes for Adults

Rich Township is offering free basic computer skill classes for adults every Tuesday and Thursday from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. at the Leonard Robinson Family Services Center, 22013 Governors Highway, Richton Park. Participants will learn Microsoft Word, Excel, PowerPoint, internet skills, résumé building skills, and more. Classes are open only to residents of Rich Township. For additional information, call Mark Mason or Joe Moran at 708-748-6722.

Online Educational Resources

Online college programs are a great way for today’s busy people to complete or earn a degree. To find an online college program in Illinois, visit where you will find a compilation of every college program offered online in Illinois offered on a full or part-time basis.

Top U.S. Universities

Choosing what college or university to attend can be a very daunting experience. With educational costs continually increasing, it’s more important than ever to choose a university that meets your specific educational needs. At, you will find a comprehensive resource that ranks each university throughout the nation by size, degrees offered, tuition costs, admission, graduation and retention rates.

Healthy Living

Park Forest Senior Citizens Advisory Commission

‘Alzheimer’s Disease & Caregiver Support’ – Thursday, March 7

On Thursday, March 7 from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. at Dining on the Green 349 Main Street, Park Forest, the Park Forest Senior Advisory Commission will sponsor an educational session titled ‘Alzheimer’s Disease & Caregiver Support.’ Beverly Kimmons of the Alzheimer’s Association will lead the discussion. For additional information or to RSVP, call the Park Forest Health Department at 708-748-1118.

Governors State University (GSU), 1 University Parkway, University Park

Free Psychotherapy Available from GSU’s Psychology Program

GSU’s Psychology Department is offering free psychotherapy services to members of the community. Conversations with a psychotherapist can help people cope with depression, anxiety, relationship issues, stress, and life transition problems. Confidential, one-on-one sessions are held with a GSU graduate student in psychology under the supervision of a Licensed Clinical Psychologist. Individuals and couples, 18 years and older, are eligible. All sessions are conducted in Matteson, IL. The number of sessions is determined by the client’s needs. For additional information or to schedule an appointment, call 708-235-2841.

Park Forest Fire Department, 156 Indianwood Boulevard, Park Forest

CPR Classes

CPR classes are available at the Park Forest Fire Department. Click on the following link for more details:

Shirley J. Green Senior Center, 297 Liberty Drive, Park Forest

Senior Citizen Weekday Lunch at the Senior Café

Senior citizens of all income levels are invited to lunch weekdays at the Community Nutrition Network (CNN) site located inside the Rich Township’s Shirley J. Green Senior Center. The CNN site is open to all south suburban residents, including those living outside of Rich Township. Participants must be 60 years of age or older. The suggested donation for lunch is $2.50. Lunch is served Monday through Friday at noon. Bingo begins at 11 a.m. For additional information or to make a reservation for lunch, call 708-747-2700.

Partnership for Prescription Assistance (PPA)

Assistance With Medications & Health Services

If you, or someone you know, are struggling to pay for medications every month, they may be able to get the medicines they need for free or almost free through the Partnership for Prescription Assistance. If you live in Illinois, you can get access to more than 475 public and private program available to help you pay for your medicines. Simply visit to find out if you can apply to any of these great programs and to get connected with 10,000 free clinics and doctors.

Green Events

Park Forest Environment Commission

‘Basic Canning’ Presentation – Limited Tickets Now on Sale

Based on numerous requests from members of the community, the Park Forest Environment Commission has arranged for Chef Kate Bradley to give a presentation on ‘Basic Canning’ on Monday, April 29 at 7 p.m. at Park Forest Village Hall, 350 Victory Drive. Kate will provide an overview of basic canning techniques and familiarize participants with the equipment needed to successfully can the fruits of your summer gardens for enjoyment in the cold winter months. Participants will also enjoy light refreshments canned from Kate’s garden. Seating for this event is limited. Tickets are $10 and can be purchased in advance or on the night of the event if any remain. Proceeds from the event will be used for the benefit of the Park Forest Community Garden project. To purchase advance tickets or for additional information, call Rosemary Piser at 708-747-1991 or e-mail [email protected].

2013 Park Forest Community Garden Project

The Village of Park Forest will once again offer residents the opportunity to use vacant, Village-owned property for purposes of developing a community garden. Gardening groups using Village-owned lots will be reimbursed up to $370 for allowable gardening expenditures. This $370 reimbursement represents the amount that the Village would pay to have the lot maintained over the course of the summer. For additional information about the Community Garden Project, please e-mail Rosemary Piser at [email protected] or Sarah Coulter, the Village’s Sustainability Consultant at [email protected].

Thorn Creek Nature Preserve, 247 Monee Road, Park Forest

Make a Gourd Birdhouse – Registration Required

On Sunday, March 3 from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m., those of all ages can participate in this fun family workshop to create a welcoming nesting space for birds in your own backyard. Join artist Pat Moore to make a natural style birdhouse from a gourd. Birdhouses are increasingly important to cavity nesters like wrens and chickadees. All materials are provided. This program will be held indoors. There is a fee of $10 per house; limit one house per person. Registration is required by Friday, March 1. For additional information or to register, call 708-747-6320.

Experience the Thorn Creek Nature Center

Thorn Creek Nature Center is housed in a historic building, originally Immanuel Lutheran Church of Matteson, Illinois built in 1862, and later Village Bible Church of Park Forest. A gothic frame country church, its notable architectural features include curved ceiling, tongue-and-groove paneling and a raised pulpit. Its current attractions are displays of the preserve’s flora and fauna, a bird feeder viewing area, Eugene E. Schwartz reference library and an expanded children’s section. The Nature Center is open Friday through Sunday, noon to 4 p.m. Trails are open daily year-round, dawn to dusk. For additional information, call 708-747-6320.

Field Museum of Natural History, 1400 S. Lake Shore Drive, Chicago

‘Everglades of the North: The Story of the Grand Kankakee Marsh’ – Screening February 26

The documentary film ‘Everglades of the North’ will be screening on Tuesday, February 26 at 6 p.m. at the Field Museum of Natural History. The Grand Kankakee Marsh or ‘everglades of the North’ was one of the largest wetlands in North America. With interlocking wetlands, prairies, savannas and woodlands it was home to some of the highest concentrations of wildlife on the planet. Following the screening, Doug Stotz of the Field Museum will moderate a discussion by a panel of experts on the Kankakee Region, including:

  • John Rogner, U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service,
  • Jim Sweeney, Friends of the Kankakee,
  • Marianne Hahn, Friends of the Kankakee, and
  • Jeff Manes, Producer/Writer.

The event is free and open to the public. Please enter the Museum at the West door. Doors will open at 5:30 p.m. Paid parking is available at Soldier Field for approximately $19. Public transit is recommended. For additional information, e-mail [email protected].

This & That

Park Forest Baseball

Registration for 2013 Season – Now in Progress

Registration for the 2013 season of Park Forest Baseball is now in progress. This program is open to both boys and girls from age 4 through 14. The registration will be at Park Forest Village Hall, 350 Victory Drive on the following dates:

  • Saturday, March 9 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
  • Friday, March 15 from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m.

Complete details about registration can be found at or call Alan or Mary Kay Joens at 708-503-1944.

Knights of Columbus-Nina Council #3602, Park Forest

Annual Lenten Fish Fry – Friday, March 1

The Knights of Columbus-Nina Council #3602 will hold their annual Lenten Fish Fry on Friday, March 1 at St. Irenaeus Church’s School Gym located at south Orchard and Indianwood Boulevard, Park Forest. Serving is from 5 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. each week. The menu includes:

  • 3 piece fish dinner — $8
  • 2 piece fish dinner — $7
  • 2 pieces fish and 3 shrimp dinner — $10
  • 6 piece shrimp dinner — $8

All sea food dinners include macaroni and cheese, green beans, coleslaw and bread. Also on the menu is a Macaroni and cheese and green bean mean for $5 for adults and $4 for children. Coffee and tea are free. Bottled water and canned pop are available for $1 each. Dessert is sold separately. There is plenty of free parking. All are invited.

Faith United Protestant Church, 10 Hemlock St., Park Forest

Free Java Tuesdays

All are invited to Faith United Protestant Church for FREE Java Tuesdays. Visitors are asked to go to the Indianwood Boulevard side entrance between 8:30 a.m. and 10 a.m. for free curbside service or to come and sit a bit. The event will continue each Tuesday as a form of outreach to the community throughout the summer and fall. For more information, call 708-747-1330.

Park Forest American Legion Post 1198, 1631 Western Ave., Chicago Heights

Friday Fish Fry – Friday, March 1

Join Park Forest’s American Legion Post 1198 for fish, shrimp, wings, beef and appetizers on Friday, March 1 beginning at 6 p.m. Carry outs are available. For additional information, call Jesse Rodriguez at 708-481-3055.

Garden Club of Park Forest

"A Gardener’s Cookbook"

To celebrate their 55th anniversary, the Park Forest Garden Club offers this cookbook filled with memories, gardening tips, flowery sayings and of course recipes. Makes a great gift. All proceeds go to the club and are used toward community contributions. Cookbooks are $9 and are available at the Park Forest Recreation and Parks Department, 350 Victory Drive. Call 708-748-2005 for additional information.

Prairie State College (PSC), 202 S. Halsted, Chicago Heights

Get Your Taxes Done for Free at PSC

PSC in conjunction with the Center for Economic Progress (CEP) is offering opportunities for individuals and families meeting certain criteria to get their taxes done for free. The tax assistance will be available through April 13. Hours are Tuesday through Thursday, 5:30 p.m. to 8 p.m. and Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. The free assistance is available to individuals with incomes less than $25,000; for families with income level less than $50,000. The service is offered on a first come, first serve basis. To ensure the process goes smoothly, bring the following information: all W-2s and 1099s (if any), social security cards of Individual Taxpayer Identification Numbers (ITIN) for all family members; valid photo ID; copy of last year’s tax return (if available); bank account number and routing number for direct deposit of your refund; property tax bill; and the amount spent on college expenses. Other options offered during the tax preparation session include free help filing an Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) claim, open a bank or savings account to deposit your refund, or obtain a prepaid debit card for your refund. If you have any questions, call 888-827-8511.

Rotary Club of Park Forest

The Rotary Club of Park Forest urges you to purchase a Golden Opportunities 2012 book to help support its youth activities. Books are only $25 and are now available for purchase at the Park Forest Library, 400 Lakewood Blvd.

Donate Unused Air Miles to Support Families of Wounded Servicemembers

"Operation Hero Miles" collects unused frequent flyer miles to help military families visit service members who were injured in Iraq or Afghanistan and are recovering in military hospitals around the world. Airline partners are: AirTran, Alaska Airlines, American, Frontier, Midwest, Northwest, United, and US Airways. To donate airline miles, visit

Donate to Troops Serving Abroad

The Village of Park Forest is currently seeking the names and addresses of local military personnel currently serving overseas so that they may receive packaged donations from Park Forest residents. If you are a Park Forest resident and have a family member from your household currently deployed or if you have recently returned from a tour of duty, please call Judi Lancaster at 708-283-5608 or stop by the Manager’s Office at Village Hall, 350 Victory Drive.

Greening of Park Forest

Sertoma Centre, Inc., 4343 W. 123rd St., Alsip

Recycle Unused Wheelchairs

If you have a used motorized wheelchair that you no longer need and would like to help a person with a disability, the Sertoma Centre will accept your donation. Contact Melanie Jones at 708-730-6206 for additional information.

South Suburban Family Shelter Used Cell Phone Collection Drive

South Suburban Family Shelter (SSFS) is seeking cell phone donations for their ongoing fundraising program. Proceeds from the collection fund the critical programs and services provided to families who experience domestic violence. All victim services are provided free of charge and are available in English and Spanish. Cell phone collection sites currently include:

  • SSFS Administrative Office, 18139 Harwood, Homewood, IL
  • Bergstein’s NY Deli, 200 Dixie Highway, Chicago Heights, IL
  • Doyle Designed Salon, 2630 Flossmoor Rd., Flossmoor, IL

All donations are tax deductible and receipts are available at collection sites. For more information about SSFS or the fundraising drive, please contact Ms. Meilach at 708-794-2140, extension 303.

Local Recycling Resources and Proper Disposal of Unused Medicine

Do you have old televisions, computers, video games or other electronics or household appliances that need to be recycled? Want to know how to properly dispose of old or unused medication? Click on the "Recycling" icon found on the top of eNews Park Forest and you will find useful information on proper recycling/disposal that will not only be good for the environment, but in some cases, earn you a few dollars as well.

Safe Disposal Program – Bio-waste

The Park Forest Health Department and Environment Commission have partnered to provide information on the proper disposal of bio-waste such as used syringes or lancets (medical sharps). Begin by purchasing a Sharps container to dispose of your medical sharps for $10 at the Park Forest Health Department. Return the filled container to the Park Forest Health Department and purchase a new container. Call Brenda Walker at 708-748-1118 for more information.

Recycle Used Cell Phones and Cell Phone Accessories

The Rotary Club of Park Forest is conducting a used cell phone and accessory collection drive to benefit the families and programs of the South Suburban Family Shelter. Donated items can be placed in the collection box located in the lobby of Village Hall. For more information, call Denyse Carreras at 708-283-5603.

Sources: Park Forest Winter-Spring 2013 Recreation Programs & More Brochure, Park Forest ‘Discover’ magazine, Rich Township Report, Park Forest Historical Society, Village of Park Forest, Governors State University, Prairie State College, Center for Performing Arts, South Suburban Family Shelter, Park Forest Historical Society, Illinois Philharmonic Orchestra, Illinois Theatre Center, Sertoma Centre, Inc., Union Street Gallery, Monkey Mind Art Studio, Thorn Creek Audubon Society, and Tall Grass Arts Association websites.