In and Around Park Forest Week of December 27, 2010

Bridge in Central Park
A snow-covered bridge to Park Forest’s Central Park. (Photo: Gary Kopycinski)

Park Forest, IL—(ENEWSPF)—December 20, 2010. As another year draws to a close, many of us will make resolutions for the New Year.  I think that Benjamin Franklin identified three of the best resolutions for all — Be always at war with your vices, at peace with your neighbors, and let each new year find you a better person. Wishing all our eNews readers a happy and healthy 2011.

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.

Arts & Entertainment

Park Forest Library, 400 Lakewood Boulevard, Park Forest

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

  • Monday, December 27 at 10:30 a.m. – Storytime for children ages 2 and older
  • Tuesday, December 28 at 7 p.m. – PJ Storytime for children of all ages
  • Wednesday, December 29 at 10:15 a.m.  – Lap Sit Story Times for those ages 3 and under
  • Wednesday, December 29 at 11 a.m. – Toddler Art for those ages 2 to 4
  • Wednesday, December 29 at 2 p.m. – Foodie Movie: Julie & Julia
  • Thursday, December 30 at 10:15 a.m. – Discovery Time
  • Thursday, December 30 at 1 p.m. to 3 p.m.. – Afternoon Wii Surprise
  • Friday, December 31 at 11 a.m. to 12 noon – Ring in the New Year – Countdown for kids

For more information or to register for these events, call the Park Forest Library’s Youth Services Department at 708-748-3731.

Community Cookbook –Recipes Needed

Do you have a family recipe that you would like to share with others in Park Forest?   The Park Forest Library is accepting your recipes for inclusion in a community cookbook through January 29.  Drop off your favorite recipe at the Adult Services desk.  For more information or questions about this project, call 708-748-3731.

Library Closure

The Park Forest Library will be closed on Saturday, January 1 in observance of the New Year’s Holiday.  The Library will reopen on Monday, January 3 at 10 a.m.  For additional information or questions, please call 708-748-3731 or visit: www.pfpl.org.

Illinois Philharmonic Orchestra, 377 Artists Walk, Park Forest

Beethoven & Pine – Tickets now on Sale

On January 15 and January 16, take a musical journey, 101 years back in time, to New Year’s Eve 1909.  Gustav Mahler conducted the New York Philharmonic and Maud Powell, America’s first violinist to gain international fame, in a ground breaking all-Beethoven program.  Critically-acclaimed violin virtuoso Rachel Barton Pine, champion of Powell’s achievements, and guest conductor Alexander Platt recreate this legendary program.  The January 15th concert will be held at 8 p.m. at the Lincoln-Way North Performing Arts Center, 19900 S. Harlem Ave., Frankfort and are priced at $30, $40, and $50.  The January 16th concert will be held at 3 p.m. at Ozinga Chapel at Trinity Christian College, 6601 West College Dr., Palos Heights and are priced at $30 and $40.  For additional information or to purchase tickets, call 708-481-7774 or visit: www.ipomusic.org.

Tall Grass Arts Association, 267 Artists Walk, Park Forest

"Presents – Small Works for the Holidays" – Through January 16

"Presents – Small Works for the Holidays," featuring media and work not seen in the gallery before runs until Sunday, January 16, 2011. The event if free and open to the public. Gallery hours are 11 a.m. through 4 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday. For additional information, call 708-748-3377 or visit www.tallgrassarts.org.

Park Forest Recreation & Parks Department

Sports Trip: Chicago Bulls vs. Boston Celtics – Tickets Now on Sale

On Saturday, January 8, 2011, the revamped Chicago Bulls featuring All-Star Derrick Rose and newly-acquired Carlos Boozer will square off against the Big 3 (Kevin Garnett, Ray Allen and Pau Pierce) and the future Hall of Famer Shaquille O’Neal in a matchup to determine Eastern Conference supremacy.  Seating to this premium game is limited.  Children under 13 must be accompanied by a ticketed adult.  Tickets are $63 and include round-trip school bus transportation.  The bus will leave from Village Hall at 5:15 p.m. and return at approximately 10:30 p.m.  For additional information, or questions, call Kevin Adams at 708-748-2005 or e-mail [email protected].

Untouchable Tour and Lunch Senior Trip – Registration Deadline Tuesday, January 18

On Wednesday, January 26, 2011, you can spend the day with us as we journey into the past and cruise the city in search of the old hoodlum haunts, brothels, gambling dens, and sites of gangland shootouts on Chicago’s Untouchable Tour.  The day will star with some authentic Italian food at Connie’s Restaurant for a family-style meal including salad, pasta, chicken and dessert.  You will then have a comfortable ride on our motor coach while the gangster guide presents an accurate account of the activities going on in Chicago during the 1920’s and 30’s and ride by the sites of Chicago land where Al Capone, Bugs Moran and John Dillinger lived, worked or met their demise.  Fee is $54 and includes round-trip coach bus, lunch and tour.  The bus will depart from Freedom Hall at 10 a.m. and return at approximately 4 p.m.  Register by Tuesday, January 18 at the Recreation & Parks Department at Village Hall, 350 Victory Drive in person, or by phone with a credit card at 708-748-2005. For additional information or questions, call 708-748-2005.

Center for Performing Arts, 1 University Parkway, University Park

Blue Suede Shoes – The Ultimate Tribute – Tickets Now on Sale

On Saturday, January 8 at 8 p.m., celebrate the King’s 75th birthday with a free slice of the ultimate birthday cake, and classics like Hound Dog and Heartbreak Hotel plus Elvis’ later hits  Starring Mike Albert, Scot Bruce, and the Big E Band.  Tickets are priced at $34, $42, and $49.  For additional information or to purchase tickets, call 708-235-2222 or visit: www.centertickets.net.

Lurrie Bell’s Chicago Blues Band – Tickets Now on Sale

The Center’s Cabaret Series kicks off on Saturday, January 15 at 8 pm. With Lurrie Bell’s Chicago Blues Band.  Born in Chicago to famed blues harmonica master Carey Bell, Lurrie brings his own rich sound infused with emotion and steeped in tradition.  Enjoy snacks and cocktail service during the Cabaret shows.  Tickets are $37.  For additional information or to purchase tickets, call 708-235-2222 or visit: www.centertickets.net.

Rich Township Senior Chorus

Singers Needed

The Rich Township Senior Chorus is looking for people who love to sing. Any senior resident living in the south suburbs is welcome to join. The chorus performs twice a month for senior facilities throughout the south suburbs. For additional information about joining the chorus, call 708-748-5454.

Union Street Gallery, 1527 Otto Blvd., Chicago Heights

National Call For Art – Deadline for Entries January 19

“Words & Numbers” is an exhibit that focuses on the visual signs and symbols of written language, offering the opportunity to explore letters, words and numbers that represent various functions and meanings, abstractions and emotions, thoughts and reactions. This Spring National juried exhibit is open to U.S. artists 18 years of age and older in all media.  Art submitted might incorporate words, letters, punctuation, and/or numbers through subject matter, imagery, concept or design of the work.  Art might be based on real or invented language, original or source writings, graffiti, signs, symbols, statistics, or any other forms of text or numerical figures. Deadline for entries is Wednesday, January 19. For additional information or to download a prospectus, visit: www.unionstreetgallery.org/artist.htm or call 708-754-2601.

Educational Lectures & Opportunities

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

Infant & Toddler Childcare Now Available

GSU’s Family Development Center (FDC) has opened an Illinois State licensed childcare facility for infants, toddlers, and two year olds.  The little ones are cared for in specially equipped classrooms of eight children, each staffed with two teachers.  The infant and toddler childcare center is open from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m., Monday through Friday.  FDC staff have been extensively and specially trained to care for young children.  Licensure required extensive review by the State.  The FDC also offers full and half day pre-kindergarten, three or five days a week, and childcare for three to five year olds and before and after school childcare for five to twelve year olds.  Several special grants are available to assist eligible families with infant, toddler childcare costs.  Discounts are also offered for GSU students and staff.  For additional information or to register your child, call 708-235-7300.

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 2 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.

Green Events

University of Illinois at Chicago

“Wild Things” A Chicago Wilderness Conference for People and Nature – Register Now

Early registration is now being accepted for the “Wild Things’ Wilderness Conference which will be held on March 5, 2011 at the University of Illinois at Chicago.  This day-long conference will bring together the region’s best experts, most dedicated volunteers and anyone interested in nature.  There will be technical presentations and interactive workshops of interest for everyone from beginners to experts.  Topics include habitat management, advocacy, wildlife conservation, education, art, culture, history, backyard and neighborhood ecology. Register early through January 30 for only $28 at www.habitatproject.org. For questions or additional information, call 847-328-3910, extension 21 or email [email protected].

Healthy Living

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

Senior Citizen Weekday Lunch

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.

Park Forest Health Department, 350 Victory Drive (lower level)

Walk-In Flu & Pneumonia Clinic

On Wednesdays and Thursdays from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. flu and pneumonia immunizations will be available while supplies last. For fee information or questions, call the Park Forest Health Department at 708-748-1118.

Babies, Teens and Adults Immunization Clinics

Babies, teens and adult immunization and flu and pneumonia clinics will be held on Mondays and Fridays from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. For details or to schedule an appointment, call 708-748-1118. The Health Department is a low cost provider for children and adult immunizations.

Blood Pressure Screening

A free Blood Pressure Clinic is held at the Park Forest Health Department Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Elevated blood pressure is a risk factor for stroke and other cardiovascular diseases. Walk in or call ahead at 708-748-1118.

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

Free Counseling Services Available

Today, individuals and families face economic and social pressures as well as communication difficulties that frequently disrupt family unity and the ability to cope. Counseling is one of the most important tools for understanding and coping. Free, individual, family and vocational counseling is available through GSU’s Division of Psychology and Counseling as part of its training program for advanced graduate counseling students. Faculty members, who are also licensed counselors, supervise the sessions. Counseling sessions are conducted on campus in total confidentiality. For more information, call 708-534-4545 or visit www.govst.edu/counselinglab.

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 programs 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.

This & That

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.

Celebration Ministries, 424 Indianwood, Park Forest

C4 Underground Youth Gathering – Every Tuesday & Thursday

Youths in grades 6 and up are welcome to join us every Tuesday and Thursday from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. for fun and games, group discussion and a variety of activities. For more information, call Celebration Ministries at 708-748-1995.

Roots and Wings, 215 Nashua St., Park Forest

Current Events Topic Group – Every Monday

Join us every Monday from 6 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. as we gather to talk about God, us, the world and how they all work together. Roots and Wings is located behind Celebration Ministries. For more information, contact Celebration Ministries at 708-748-1995.

Rainbow Café

Monthly Meeting – Saturday, January 4

The Rainbow Café is an opportunity for single or partnered gays, lesbians, bisexuals or other sexual minorities, and their allies, over age 18 to meet one another and socialize in a safe and supportive atmosphere.  Those attending are encouraged to bring some non-alcoholic drinks and a dessert or snack to pass, or bring a financial donation.  However, neither is mandatory.
The Rainbow Café is held from 7 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. on the 1st Saturday of each month at the Unitarian-Universalist Community Church, 70 Sycamore, Park Forest.

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.

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 www.FisherHouse.org.

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.

Go Green with a Free Tote Bag

The Village of Park Forest encourages residents to visit Village Hall to pick up an environmentally friendly canvas bag that can be used for your day-to-day shopping needs. These bags are free while supplies last with only two expectations: 1) that residents have a valid email address so that future environmentally conscious concepts can be shared by the Village’s Environment Commission; and 2) that bags are limited to one per household. For more information on this program, visit the Village Manager’s Office on the second floor of Village Hall of call 708-748-1129.

Sources: Park Forest 2010 Autumn Recreation Programs & More; Park Forest Fall/Winter 2010-2011 Recreation Programs & More; Rich Township Report; Village of Park Forest, Governors State University, Prairie State College, Center for Performing Arts, South Suburban Family Shelter, Park Forest Historical Society, Illinois Theatre Center, Illinois Philharmonic Orchestra, Freedom Hall Nathan Manilow Theatre, Sertoma Centre, Inc., Rotary Club of Park Forest, Union Street Gallery, Monkey Mind Art Studio & Gallery, CAUTION, Thorn Creek Audubon Society, and Tall Grass Arts Association websites.