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In and Around Park Forest Week of November 29, 2015

Tufted Titmouse
The National Audubon Society’s Annual Christmas Bird Count begins on December 14. Photo: Tufted Titmouse By: Catherine McEntee/Audubon Photography Awards

Park Forest, IL—(ENEWSPF)—November 29, 2015. Attorney General Lisa Madigan has released her annual Safe Shopping Guide highlighting hazardous toys, children’s products and household items that have been recalled over the past year to help Illinois families ensure their home is safe for the holidays. In addition, the guide details practices that should be used with many popular holiday gifts with Internet access, including smartphones, gaming consoles and tablets. The 2015 Safe Shopping Guide includes detailed descriptions and photographs of nearly 100 children’s products recalled in the last year – from popular children’s toys and games that pose choking hazards to children’s furniture and playsets that pose entrapment or falling risks. This year’s edition also addresses another risk parents confront every day: keeping their children safe online. The digital age has created a new landscape that presents new dangers to children in particular, who can be vulnerable when using the Internet, online games or apps. Madigan’s office offers specific tips parents can follow to ensure their children use these ubiquitous Internet-accessible devices safely. For more information or assistance, Attorney General Madigan urged Illinois residents to contact her office’s Internet Safety Team at 1-888-414-7678 or email them at [email protected] to connect with an Internet Safety Specialist. Madigan’s Internet Safety Team regularly provides schools, teachers, students and parents with online safety tips, helping children understand the importance of using safe online practices.

Attention all bird lovers, it’s time for the National Audubon Society’s annual Christmas Bird Count. Now in its 116th year, the annual Christmas Bird Count will take place from December 14 through January 5. During the count, more than 72,000 volunteers from 2,400-plus locations across the Western Hemisphere record sightings of bird species with the data collected and submitted to Audubon for research on bird populations and environmental conditions. For more than 100 years, Audubon’s Christmas Bird Count, the longest-running wildlife census, has fueled science and conservation action. Each winter, citizen scientists gather in 15-mile-wide circles, organized by a count compiler, and count every bird they see or hear. Their hard work provides valuable insights into population trends for many species that would otherwise go unnoticed and undocumented. The Audubon Christmas Bird Count is a citizen science project organized by the National Audubon Society. There is no fee to participate and the quarterly report, American Birds, is available online. Counts are open to birders of all skill levels and Audubon’s free Bird Guide app makes it even easier to chip in. For more information and to find a count near you visit www.christmasbirdcount.org.

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 Board Meeting – Saturday, December 5

The Board of Trustees will hold a Saturday morning Rules Meeting on December 5 at 10 a.m. The meeting will be held at Village Hall, 350 Victory Drive. 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.

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

Village Commissions & Advisory Boards

The following Park Forest Commissions are scheduled to meet the week of November 29:

  • Tuesday, December 1 – Plan Commission
  • Thursday, December 3 at 1 p.m. – Senior Citizens Advisory Commission
  • Thursday, December 3 at 7 p.m. – Environment Commission

The meetings will be held at Park Forest Village Hall and residents are encouraged to attend.

Arts & Entertainment

DePaul University Art Museum, 935 West Fullerton, Chicago

‘Idol Structures’ – Through December 20

Advertisements permeate public landscapes with billboards, signs and different forms of mass media. ‘Idol Structures,’ an exhibition of sculpture and photography by Chicago artist Matt Siber will run through December 20 at the DePaul Art Museum. This new body of work emphasizes the physical structures that are meant to stay invisible and passive while helping to relay the image, text, or graphic to the consumer. The sculptures and photographs featured in the exhibition are designed to make you more aware of your environment as you go about your daily life. Siber, who teaches advanced digital imaging at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, has been working on this type of artwork since he was a graduate student. The sculptures are modeled after the photographs by using fine craftsmanship to reconstruct the signs out of wood and florescent tubes. Some of the sculptures are almost to scale, with the largest one measuring 14 feet tall. ‘Idol Structures’ is supported by a grant from the David C. and Sarajean Ruttenberg Arts Foundation. More about Matt Siber at http://siberart.com/projects/structures. The DePaul Art Museum is located just east of the CTA’s Fullerton ‘L’ stop, is open Wednesdays and Thursdays from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m., Fridays from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., and Saturdays and Sundays from noon to 5 p.m. It is closed Mondays and Tuesdays. For more information, call 773-325-7506 or visit http://museums.depaul.edu.

The Drama Group, 330 West 202nd Street, Chicago Heights

‘Heaven Can Wait’ – Opens Friday, December 4

The Drama Group is pleased to present the entertaining comedy/fantasy, ‘Heaven Can Wait’ directed by Chuck Kaffka. ‘Heaven Can Wait’ tells the story of boxer, Joe Pendleton, who crashes on the way to his next fight and is sent to the Hereafter….sixty years too soon! To make matters worse, before the matter can be rectified by heavenly supervisor Mr. Jordan, his body is cremated. Instead, Joe is given the body of the very wealthy Jonathan Farnsworth, who is about to be murdered by his wife. Joe, living as Farnsworth, tries to remake Farnsworth’s unworthy life and avoid his murderous wife, while resurrecting his boxing career and falling in love. The 1978 remake, ‘Heaven Can Wait,’ with Warren Beatty, James Mason, Julie Christie and Dyan Cannon was nominated for Academy Awards. Performances will be held at the Drama Group Studio Theatre on December 4, 5, 10, 11 & 12 at 7:30 p.m. and matinees on December 6 & 13 at 2:00 p.m. Tickets are $20 for adults; $19 for seniors and $15 for students with ID. Group discount rates are also available. Good seats are still available. Tickets can be purchased by calling the Box Office at 708-755-3444 or online at http://www.brownpapertickets.com/profile/242073. For directions and other information regarding Drama Group activities, please visit our Web site at www.dramagroup.org.

National Veterans Art Museum, 4041 North Milwaukee Avenue, Chicago

‘Tactical Formations: Collective Practice in the Veteran Art Movement’ – Through January 30

The NVAM will feature its newest exhibit, Tactical Formations: Collective Practice in the Veteran Art Movement through January 30. The exhibit is free and open to the public. Tactical Formations takes the basic military strategy of organizing troops into units to carry out tactical missions during combat and applies it to the practice of forming and operating art collectives in order to achieve socially grounded goals through artistic production. The exhibit explores three art collectives: The Vietnam Veterans Arts Group (VVAG), The Dirty Canteen, and the NVAM Teen Council. The VVAG first formed in 1981 when a group of Vietnam veterans began making artwork as an artistic response to their experiences of war. The VVAG was unique in launching the first exhibition composed exclusively of artwork made by combat veterans. The Dirty Canteen collective formed in 2013, and includes veterans from the Gulf War, Kosovo, and the Iraq and Afghanistan Wars, who strive to create and maintain open dialogues about past and current military engagements. Finally, the NVAM Teen Council represents a growing group of high school students who create artwork while developing skills in leadership and museum practices in collaboration with veteran artists. These three groups represent NVAM’s foundation, its growing population of post-Gulf War veterans, and its future leaders and artists. For additional information, call 312-326-0270 or visit: www.nvam.org.

Park Forest Public Library, 400 Lakewood Boulevard

The following event is scheduled the week of November 29:

  • Monday, November 29 at 11 a.m. – Sunrise Story Time — Jump start your morning with a series of stories that are sure to get you moving. Ages 12 and under.
  • Monday, November 29 at 4:30 p.m. — kids’ zone Science Club: Game Your Way to Mars! — Game your way to Mars! Jois us as we explore ways to launch/land a rocket on Mars with experiments provided by the Museum of Science and Industry Chicago. We’ll also learn how to survive on Mars and even build a model rover that could explore Mars’ surface! Sign up Today! Registration is required, Grades 3rd-5th.
  • Tuesday, December 1 at 7 p.m. –Pajama Story Time — Share special moments with your child through stories, crafts, and more. Wear your pj’s and wind down from a busy day. Ages 12 and under.
  • Wednesday, December 2 at 11 a.m. – Baby Time — Story time for infants to 35 months of age with an adult. This story time is designed to engage children through movement, music, stories, and more.
  • Wednesday, December 2 at 3 p.m. — Lego Junior Makerspace — We’re excited to add Lego Junior Maker Space to our kids’ zone activities. With Lego Maker Space you’ll have the opportunity to build cars, planes and more! Enjoy scavenging through a wide collection of blocks, gears and wheels. Stop by kids’ zone and build with us. Ages 12 and under.
  • Thursday, December 3 at 11 a.m. – Toddler Art — Bring your imagination, creativity, and throw on some old clothes to bring out your inner Picasso through art projects and more… Some projects may involve paint. Ages 3-5.
  • Thursday, December 3 at 6 p.m. – Teen Advisory Board Meeting — We want YOU to join our new Teen Advisory Board (TAB) and help plan and design this new space for PF/OF teens. Ask for an application in patron services.
  • Thursday, December 3 at 6:30 p.m. — TTZ Movie Night: Me and Earl and the Dying Girl — “High schooler Greg, who spends most of his time making parodies of classic movies with his co-worker Earl, finds his outlook forever altered after befriending a classmate who has just been diagnosed with cancer.” Ages 12 – 18.
  • Saturday, December 5 at 1 p.m. — Dedication of the Coral Reef Exhibit — Come learn about the vibrant colors and natural splendor of coral reefs. This exhibit is sponsored by the Kiwanis Club.

For additional information or to register for an event call 708-748-3731 or visit www.pfpl.org.

Friends of the Library Meeting – Tuesday, December 1

The Friends of the Library will meet on Tuesday, December 1 at 7 p.m. at the Park Forest Public Library. Support our mission to open doors to a world of information, education, and recreation. The event is open to the public. For additional information, contact Barbara Osuch at 708-748-3731, extension 16 or email [email protected].

Potpourri of Lectures – Thursday, December 3

The Potpourri of Lectures will be held on Thursday, December 3 at 10:30 a.m. in the Library’s Ringering Room. This week’s topic is American Teachers in China and North Korea” with Stan Moore.

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

‘Action/Reaction’ Exhibit – Through December 3

PSC is hosting “Action/Reaction,” works by a collective of veteran artists who call themselves Dirty Canteen through Thursday, December 3, in the Christopher Art Gallery, located on the college’s main campus in Chicago Heights. The Christopher Art Gallery is open from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., Monday through Thursday, and 5 to 7 p.m. on Wednesday and Thursday. Visits also can be made by appointment. For more information about the exhibit or to make an appointment for a visit, call 708-709-7738.

Educational Lectures & Opportunities

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

Master of Public Administration Degree Program Information Session – Tuesday, December 1

GSU’s Master of Public Administration degree program is planning to offer this program at the New Lenox Police Department starting fall 2016. An information session at the New Lenox Police Department, 200 Veterans Parkway, New Lenox, IL, will take place on Tuesday, December 1, from 9 a.m.-5 p.m. It is free and open to the public. Governors State University representatives will be present to answer questions about the program. For more information, contact Nancy Kaczmarczyk at 708-235-3983 or [email protected].  If you are interested in obtaining more information about the program, please visit: www.govst.edu/cas.

Representative Robin Kelly, 600 Holiday Plaza Drive, Matteson

Congressional App Competition for High School Students – Submission Deadline January 15

Representative Robin Kelly announced a Congressional App Challenge for high school students in the 2nd Congressional District. The competition is aimed at encouraging and recognizing young programming talent and highlighting the importance of computer science in the Digital Age. The competition is open to students of all skill levels. Winners of the App Challenge will be recognized and honored by Congresswoman Kelly. The winning apps will be displayed on the Congressional App Challenge website, and winners will have their apps exhibited on a digital display in the Capital Building for a year. The deadline for submissions is January 15, 2016. For more information and to register for the App Challenge, go to https://www.challenge.gov/challenge/congressional-app-challenge-il-02-rep-kelly/ or call Rep. Kelly’s Matteson Office at 708-679-0078.

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 http://www.onlineschools.org/guides/Illinois/ 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 http://www.topschools.com/, you will find a comprehensive resource that ranks each university throughout the nation by size, degrees offered, tuition costs, admission, graduation and retention rates.

Green Events

Thorn Creek Nature Preserve, 247 Monee Road, Park Forest

Wednesday Morning Walkers – December 2

Wednesday Morning Walkers can enjoy the early morning and late summer’s floral delights on these leisurely (or brisk – take your choice) trail walks. The group walks on Wednesdays from 7:30 a.m. to 9 a.m. Trails can be wet or muddy, so please wear sturdy shoes. Age 13 through adult are invited. Registration is required two days before you walk the first time. For additional information or to register, call 815-727-8700.

Animals in Winter Hike – Registration Required by Friday, December 4

Have you ever wondered how animals spend the winter? They may not have a cozy house and can’t make hot chocolate, but several adaptations allow them to survive even our harshest Midwest winters. On the Animals in Winter Hike being held on Sunday, December 6 at 1 p.m., we’ll walk the trails searching for signs of animals preparing for winter. The hike is free and open to adults and children age 8 and older. Registration is required by Friday, December 4. For additional information or to register, call 708-747-6320.

Become a ‘Friend of Thorn Creek’

Friends of Thorn Creek Woods is the citizen activist group responsible in very large part for preserving and securing the dedication of the Thorn Creek Woods as an Illinois Nature Preserve. Friends’ volunteers continue to provide support in so many ways: staff the nature center on weekends; trail work; displays; leading hikes; special events; cleaning; pruning; artwork; music; research; and so on. Friends is a voice for the Woods and preservation values, donates funds for equipment and sponsors an annual meeting, Garlic Fest and Earth Day. Members receive a quarterly newsletter. Annual membership in Friends is $10. For additional information, call 708-747-6320 or visit www.tcwoods.org.

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 or visit www.tcwoods.org.

Healthy Living

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.

Sertoma Centre, 4343 West 123rd Street, Alsip

Free Community Education and Prevention Programs about Mental Health

Sertoma Centre’s Mental Health Services facility is offering community mental health seminars, free of charge to community groups, schools, law enforcement agencies, religious organizations, and other community groups at their location in Matteson or facility. Education Programs will include: Question, Persuade, and Refer (QPR) which increases public awareness of suicide and improves one’s ability to identify and refer those at risk for suicide. Mental Health First Aid (MHFA) is a public education course that helps participants identify, understand and respond to signs of mental illness and substance disorders. Also included is Mental Health First Aid for Youth and Anxiety/Depression Screenings. Thanks to a grant, these educational opportunities are available at no cost to you or your organization. To arrange a free educational opportunity for your club, group, workplace, organization, or church, call Gia Washington at 708-748-1951, Ext. 418 or email at [email protected].

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: http://pffd.vopf.com/cpr-classes.html

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 http://www.pparx.org/en/click_illinois to find out if you can apply to any of these great programs and to get connected with 10,000 free clinics and doctors.

Unitarian Universalist Community Church (UUCC), 70 Sycamore Drive, Park Forest

Yoga Classes by Karen Nielsen – Mondays, Wednesdays, & Thursdays

Yoga classes by Karen Nielsen are available at UUCC on Mondays and Thursdays from 9:30 a.m. to 11 a.m. and Wednesday evenings from 7 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. No reservations needed. Drop-in fee is $10 per class and the 6th one is free. For additional information, call 708-481-5339 or visit www.uuccpf.org.

Qigong with Jim Kobus – Most Thursdays

UUCC will host Qigong with Jim Kobus on Thursdays from 5 p.m. to 6 p.m. at the church. This class will usually meet on Thursdays but there may be exceptions, so if you are interested in attending, please send an email to Jim Kobus at [email protected] so he can notify you when class will NOT be held. There is a suggested donation of $5 per class. Please bring your own water. It is recommended that you eat dinner after class, not before. For additional information, please call 708-799-1925 or visit www.uuccpf.org.

Buddhist Meditation – Saturdays

Learn to enjoy the simple and straight-forward practice of meditation. Please join us for sitting and walking meditation in the Zen and Theravadan Buddhist traditions. This is an on-going event led by Steve McCabe and Beverly Feldt will be held on Saturdays from 9:30 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. at UUCC. There is no cost but a free will offering is most appreciated (proceeds go to UUCC). For additional information contact Steve McCabe at 708-465-3116 or Beverly Feldt at [email protected].

Medical Cannabis Education Association Meeting – Sunday, December 6

The Medical Cannabis Education Association will meet at UUCC on Sunday, December 6 at noon in Classroom 1. Attendance is free.

Holiday Events & Activities

Center for Performing Arts at Governors State University (GSU), 1 University Parkway, University Park

Salt Creek Ballet Performs ‘The Nutcracker’ – Saturday, December 5

The Salt Creek Ballet will perform ‘The Nutcracker’ on Saturday, December 5 at 1 p.m. and 5 p.m. ‘The Nutcracker’ is a magical tale featuring Tchaikovsky’s enchanting score, a brand new set & costumes – along with waltzing flowers, giant mice, and the Sugar Plum Fairy. A delightful holiday tradition for all ages! Photos with Santa will be available at 3 p.m. Tickets are $43, $33 and $23 for Adults and $23 for children under age 16. BUY TICKETS

‘An Evening with Take 6’ – Tickets Now on Sale

Tickets are now on sale for ‘An Evening with Take 6’ taking place on Saturday, December 12 at 8 p.m. As winners of 10 Grammy Awards and 10 Dove Awards, the multi-platinum selling a cappella group, Take 6, is beloved throughout the musical universe. These six virtuosic voices unite in crystal clear harmony for an intoxicating brew of gospel, jazz, R&B, and pop. With praise from such luminaries as Ray Charles, Stevie Wonder, Brian Wilson, Ella Fitzgerald and Whitney Houston, the multi-platinum selling sextet is recognized as the preeminent a capella group in the world. Join Take 6 for an evening of holiday favorites including “White Christmas,” “The Most Wonderful Time of the Year,” “Christmas Time is Here,” “Jingle Bells,” “You’re a Mean One Mr. Grinch,” and man more! Tickets are priced at $48, $43 and $38. Come early for a pre-show holiday cocktail party, and get your SIX SIP PASS of tasting wine! $20 for pass. BUY TICKETS

Freedom Hall, 410 Lakewood Boulevard, Park Forest

Masters of Soul with a Holiday Twist — December 4 & 5

An encore performance for Masters of Soul with a holiday twist! In the early 60s some of the most iconic names in the history of popular music were discovered in the Motor City of Detroit, MI, better known simply as MOTOWN. MASTERS OF SOUL is a celebration of these artists, their music and style. The show features stylishly costumed fully choreographed tributes to both male and female groups backed by a live band. MOM performs: Temptations – Gladys Knight & the Pips – Marvin Gaye & Tammi Terrell Smokey Robinson & the Miracles – Four Tops – Diana Ross & Supremes Jackson Five – Martha Reeves & Vandellas – Stevie Wonder – Commodores And many more. Tickets are $30 and can be purchased by phone at: 877-840-0457 or 708-747-0580 or online at: https://tickets.ticketforce.com/orderticketsarea.asp?p=4839&a=6567

‘‘Tis the Season’ Starring Mac Frampton – Tickets Now on Sale

Tickets are now on sale for ‘’Tis the Season’ starring Mac Frampton taking place on Tuesday, December 1 at 11 a.m. A heartwarming homage to everybody’s favorite Holiday music, sprinkled with great music for all seasons. Mac Frampton’s played the huge arenas and the concert halls, soloed with the great orchestras, and released scores of recordings. Now, in the fullness of artistic maturity, after nearly four thousand performances worldwide, Mac Frampton returns to his roots, back to the basics: a concert grand piano, the passion to perform, and an expectant audience. Mac Frampton and his music – an unbeatable combination! Join us as Mac plays the standards and Holiday Classics for this special show! Tickets are $15. Call Freedom Hall at 708-747-0580 to order tickets.

Grande Prairie Singers, 266 Somonauk, Park Forest

‘Winterlude 2015’ – Tickets Now on Sale

The Grande Prairie Singers will present ‘Winterlude 2015’ – a family tradition holiday concert on Sunday, December 13 at 4 p.m. at St. Lawrence O’Toole Church, 4101 St. Lawrence Avenue, Matteson. Tickets are $15 in advance; $10 for students with ID; $20 at the door. Tickets can be purchased by mail, 266 Somonauk, Park Forest, IL 60466; by phone at 708-481-8684; or online at www.grandeprairiechoral.org.

Illinois Philharmonic Orchestra (IPO), 377 Artists Walk, Park Forest

‘A Very Merry Holiday Spectacular’ – Tickets Now on Sale
Tickets are now on sale for the IPO’s ‘A Very Merry Holiday Spectacular’ taking place on Saturday, December 19 at 8 p.m. at the Lincolnway North Performing Art Center, 19900 S. Harlem Ave., Frankfort. Celebrate the season with your favorite holiday classics, including the familiar strains of Waltz of the Flowers and other jewels from Tchaikovsky’s Nutcracker Suite, along with Humperdinck’s charming Hansel and Gretel and the festive Sleigh Ride. Tickets are priced at $55, $45, and $35 for adults. Special pricing for students and with the IPO’s new ‘We Pick the Seats’ program. For additional ticket information, visit: www.ipomusic.org/index.php/concerts.html.

Park Forest Historical Society, 227 Monee Road

1950s Park Forest House Christmas Exhibit — Opens Wednesday, December 2

The 1950s Park Forest House Museum now located in St. Mary’s Catholic Church, invites you to “Step Back into a 1950s Christmas!” exhibit, open December 2, 2015 through January 2, 2016. Take a break from the hustle and bustle of 21st Century preparations to spend quality time getting a dose of Holiday Nostalgia. Vintage decorations are in every room. The museum features a musical, Black Forest green, aluminum, rotating tree–a Brilliant Noble Fir, made by the C. Sincere Company in Chicago, decorated with Mid-century modern ornaments. Gurley Candles and Rosbro plastic figurines, dolls, toys, and games will bring back memories to share. The museum will also have some Hanukkah decorations on display. The museum is open Wednesdays and Saturdays 1 p.m. to 3:30 p.m., and by appointment, when possible. Call to confirm open hours for Saturday, December 26. Admission/donation is $5 for adults and free for those 12 and under. One adult is free with the purchase of a Marshall Field’s Brick. Parking is in the small lot by the flagpole. Knock on the door next to the museum sign to be admitted. Call Jane Nicoll, Museum Director, at 708-481-4252 to confirm opening in the case of extreme weather. The museum is operated by the Park Forest Historical Society. Questions on the museum and exhibits should be sent to Director, Jane Nicoll through the email on the website. “Like” the 1950s Park Forest House Museum and the Park Forest Historical Society at their pages on Facebook! Follow @1950smuseum on Twitter.

Bricks from Marshall Field’s Park Forest Store For Sale – Makes Unique Holiday Gift

The Park Forest Historical Society is selling bricks from the Marshall Field’s Park Forest Store to support the 1950s House Museum and the mission of preserving and sharing Park Forest history. The Marshall Field’s Park Forest Store was the first to be in a shopping center, beginning the long association between Philip M. Klutznick and the Field’s company which led up to Water Tower Place. Bricks are $15 each; 2 for $25, and come with a Certificate of Authenticity and a history of the Marshall Field’s Park Forest Store. Shipping and handling for bricks is $12. For information on Marshall Field’s Bricks, contact the Society’s Business Manager, Mike Gans, at 708-305-3308. Bricks may also be purchased during open hours at the Recreation and Parks desk at Village Hall, 350 Victory Drive.

Watercolor of Park Forest Plaza and Holiday Theatre For Sale

Prints of Annabelle Gould’s vibrant watercolor showing the Park Forest Plaza and Holiday Theatre are on sale for $15—quantities of the print may be limited. Books and other items on Park Forest are also available at the 1950s House Museum and in the online store, at www.parkforesthistory.org. Shipping and handling for prints is $6. Prints may also be purchased during open hours at the Recreation and Parks desk at Village Hall, 350 Victory Drive.

Park Forest Police Department, 200 Lakewood Boulevard

Toys for Tots Charity Drive – Through Monday, December 21

The Park Forest Police Department is proud to again be taking part in a toy drive to benefit needy children this holiday season through the Toys for Tots charity. Interested residents should drop off their unwrapped gifts at the Park Forest Police Department before December 21.

Tall Grass Art Association, 367 Artists Walk, Park Forest

Tall Grass Art Association’s Annual Holiday Show and Sale – Through Saturday, January 9

Tall Grass Art Association’s Annual Holiday Show and Sale will run through Saturday, January 9. The show is free and open to the public. The show will feature affordable art for the holidays by Tall Grass Gallery Artists including drawings, paintings, mixed media works, prints, photographs, fiber works, ceramics, jewelry, ornaments, cards and many other handmade art and craft items perfect for gift-giving. For additional information, call 708-748-3377 or visit www.tallgrassarts.org.

Woodland Carols – Registration Required by Thursday, December 10

Woodland Carols will be held on Saturday, December 12 from noon to 2 p.m. marking the end of the food drive (see information below). Savor homemade soups while listening to a selection of cheerful holiday tunes provided by students at Homewood Suzuki Strings, seasonal favorites by beloved folksinger Anna Stange, and eclectic and improve pieces by cellist Ingrid Krizan. The afternoon concludes with our annual sing-along. Cost for the program is $10 per person, or one bag of groceries per person. Registration is required by Thursday December 10. Help a local family enjoy the December holidays by making a food donation today. For additional information, call 708-747-6320.

Thorn Creek Nature Preserve, 247 Monee Road, Park Forest

Annual Food Drive for Rich Township Food Pantry – Donations Accepted Through December 12

Thorn Creek Nature Center is hosting its annual holiday food drive for the Rich Township Food Pantry. Beginning now through Saturday, December 11, donation items can be dropped off at the Nature Center during open hours (Friday through Sunday, noon to 4 p.m.). Acceptable items are: non-perishable food items (including boxed, canned and dry foods) especially cereals and peanut butter; personal care items for men and women, especially toothpaste, deodorants and razors; ziplock quart and gallon size bags, baby formula, and disposable diapers (adult and infant). For additional information, call 708-747-6320.

Union Street Gallery (USG), 1527 Otto Boulevard, Chicago Heights

2015 ‘Twelfth Month’ Handmade & Artisanal Market – Through December 23

USG will host its 2015 ‘Twelfth Month’ Handmade and Artisanal Market will run through December 23. Formally known as ‘Twelfth Month,’ USG’s Handmade and Artisanal Market will showcase beautiful art from USG affiliated artists and friends. As in the past, there will also be boutique items that are perfect for your holiday shopping. Please come in and browse all the wonderful work available in the gallery this holiday season! There will also be special events featured during the Market. The schedule includes:

  • Saturday, December 5 — Coffee & Conversations — Join us on Saturday for a cup of coffee while viewing the art. Strike up a conversation with someone else visiting the gallery, our volunteers, or staff.
  • Friday, December 11– Matt Bailey (mgbaley.com/onemandband) Bring your friends and enjoy music from Matt Bailey from 7 p.m.to 10 p.m.
  • Saturday, — December 12– Blade & Bloom — Come check out Blade & Bloom’s (bladandbloom.com) simple, elegant, high quality beauty products at USG.

Coffee & Conversations — Join us on Saturday for a cup of coffee while viewing the art. Strike up a conversation with someone else visiting the gallery, our volunteers, or staff.

  • Saturday, December 19 – Coffee & Conversations — Join us on Saturday for a cup of coffee while viewing the art. Strike up a conversation with someone else visiting the gallery, our volunteers, or staff.
  • Wednesday, December 23 — Closes!

Gallery hours are Wednesday & Thursday noon to 5 p.m.; Friday noon to 6 p.m.; and Saturday 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.

For additional information, call 708-754-2601 or visit www.unionstreetgallery.org.

Village of Park Forest, 350 Victory Drive

Holiday Tree Lighting – Friday December 4

The Annual Holiday Tree Lighting takes place Friday, December 4, beginning at 5 p.m., at Dining on the Green, 349 Main Street. The event features arts, crafts, and refreshments for kids from 5 p.m. to 6 p.m. The lighting of the Holiday Tree happens just after 6 p.m. on the Village Green, just steps outside of Dining on the Green. The event is free and very popular with families looking to get into the holiday spirit. Sponsored by the Village of Park Forest and the Park Forest Public Library.

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Park Forest Historical Society, 227 Monee Road

Nominations Being Accepted for 2016 Park Forest Hall of Fame Class – Through December 30

The Park Forest Historical Society will be accepting nominations for the Park Forest Hall of Fame until December 30, 2015. The official form, which must accompany the nomination, is available at the 1950s Park Forest House Museum, 227 Monee Road on Wednesday and Saturday from 1-3:30 p.m., or at the Archive Office, 227 Monee Road on Friday 10-12, in the lobby of Village Hall or on the society’s website at www.parkforesthistory.org. Nominations may be mailed to the historical society or delivered to the museum or archive in person. To be eligible for the Hall of Fame, persons nominated must have made substantial, beneficial, and consistent contributions to the life and well-being of Park Forest over a considerable span of time. Nominees may now live elsewhere, or be deceased. Individuals or couples may be nominated. The person making the nomination does not have to live in Park Forest, and does not have to be a member of the society. Persons may only make one nomination each year. The official nomination form is required along with separate sheets indicating why the person is being nominated, and in convincing and thorough detail, describing the nominee’s qualifications and contributions which fit the criteria. A list of those already in the Hall of Fame is on their website. Inductees will be chosen from among the eligible nominees by the Park Forest Historical Society, and announced early in 2016. The induction ceremony will be held at Freedom Hall on April 10, 2016. For information, call society president Jane Nicoll at 708-481-4252, or email the society via the website, www.parkforesthistory.org. Visit the Park Forest Historical Society’s webs

St. Irenaeus Church, 78 Cherry Street, Park Forest

A Faith Response to Homicide: Vigil for Peace – Wednesday, December 2

The distant echo of gun fire has roared its thunderous blast in our community. The weeping of Rachel for her children is now our weeping. As an expression of solidarity and peace-seeking, the faith communities of Park Forest are gathering to pray for peace in our village, our nation and our world. The event will take place at St. Irenaeus Church on Wednesday, December 2, at 7 p.m. for a vigil, and as an ongoing commitment, the first Wednesday of each month to join our hearts, our hands, and our voices for peace. See you there!

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