In and Around Park Forest Week of February 21, 2016

Park Forest, IL—(ENEWSPF)—February 21, 2016. Tall Grass Arts Association’s 58th Annual Beaux Arts Ball fundraiser to benefit the Tall Grass Gallery and School will be held on Saturday, March 19 at the Glenwoodie Golf Club. The evening will include a cocktail reception and silent auction followed by dinner, a live auction, basket raffle and dancing. This year’s honorees are Glenna and Dudley Elvery and Richard Hunt. Reservations are to be made by Friday, February 26. Additional information about the fundraiser can be found in the ‘Arts & Entertainment’ section.

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 – Monday, February 22

The Village Board is scheduled to meet on Monday, February 22 at 7 p.m. 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).

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.

Arts & Entertainment

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

Seeking Applications for High School Theatre Collaborative – Submissions Due by Tuesday, March 1

GSU seeks applications for its Theatre & Performance Studies (T.A.P.S.) High School Theatre Collaborative (HSTC). The Collaborative, under the direction of the GSU’s Division of Communication, Visual and Performing Arts and its Theatre and Performance Studies program aims to produce inspiring theatre that helps young actors enhance their craft through active learning experiences and collaborations with Governors State University, area high schools, and the community. Each spring, high school theatre groups may submit a proposal to GSU with the production concept that they wish to present in the summer. The T.A.P.S. program staff will review proposals and select a different partner each year to perform a full scale production on the stage of the Center for Performing Arts.  Last summer, GSU kicked off the program with Crete Monee’s Enrichment program producing SHREK The Musical; a production which attracted over 1400 community members. To Apply — Visit www.govst.edu/cas/taps/hstc. The deadline for submissions is March 1, 2016. Along with its annual summer production, HSTC will be offering in-school theatre workshops, information sessions and outreach programs for high school aged youth who are interested in pursuing theatre or performance as a career path. In 2014, The Illinois Board of Higher Education approved Theatre and Performance Studies as a Bachelor’s Degree at GSU; the only such degree combining the two disciplines at a public state university in Illinois. The T.A.P.S. High School Theatre Collaborative invites high school and college students to explore theatre with the support and mentorship of GSU’s professional educators and unique program perspective. To stay connected and receive program updates, visit www.govst.edu/cas/taps and “like” us at facebook.com/TAPSGSU.

Sweet Home Chicago Blues – Tickets Now on Sale

Chicago Blues is like no other. Known worldwide for a distinctive sound, Blues is as synonymous for Chicago as pizza or the Magnificent Mile. Now come see why Chicago and Blues are the perfect pairing in a one-night only blues revue at GSU’s Center for Performing Arts, Sweet Home Chicago Blues on March 5 at 8 p.m. Sweet Home Chicago Blues features three-time Grammy nominee Billy Branch and the Sons of Blues (Billy Branch-harmonica; Sumito Ariyoshi-keyboards; Andrew “Blaze” Thomas-drums; Dan Coscarelly-lead guitar; Marvin Little-bass; horns and singers), and an all-star lineup of local artists. Special Guests Include: Eddy “The Chief” Clearwater, Jimmy Burns, Eddie Shaw (formerly of Howlin’ Wolf), Zora Young, Demetria Taylor (daughter of the late Eddie Taylor), Jamiah Rogers and Tail Dragger. This performance is part of the Center’s “Made in Chicago” Series, and is made possible through the generosity of The Chicago Community Trust. The series brings Chicago-based theatre, dance, and musical ensemble companies to the Southland. Additional support is provided by First Midwest Bank. Made in Chicago Series was designed to support Chicago artists and increase theater participation by first-time attendees, many who live in communities with little or no access to the arts. This is the final performance in the series for the 2015-16 Season.

Ticket Information
Tickets: $38/$28

Online: CenterTickets.net

By Phone: 708-235-2222

Box Office Hours: Monday- Friday 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. (open to 6p.m. on Thursdays) & 2 hours prior to all performances

The University of Illinois Alumni Association is hosting a pre-show reception and meet-and-greet with University of Illinois Alumni Billy Branch at 6:30p.m.; open to Illinois alumni only. The cost is $55. For details, visit www.uialumninetwork.org/billybranch, or call Allison Henning at 312-585-9018. RSVP’s are required by February 26.

Congresswoman Robin Kelly, 600 Holiday Plaza Drive, Matteson

2nd Congressional District Art Competition – Submission Deadline Thursday, March 31

Congresswoman Robin Kelly is sponsoring the annual Congressional Art Competition open to high school students residing or attending a school within the Second Congressional District. The winner will have the opportunity to attend a ceremony this summer in Washington D.C., where his or her artwork will be displayed at the U.S. Capitol for one year. The artwork of second- and third-place winners will be displayed in Rep. Kelly’s district offices. Students may submit their artwork from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. at Congresswoman Kelly’s Matteson Office, located at 600 Holiday Plaza Drive, Suite 505; at the Chicago Office, 9200 South Commercial Avenue, Suite 415; or to the satellite office located on the lower level of Kankakee City Hall. Please call Alan Banks at 708-679-0078 to arrange a drop-off time. The deadline for submissions is 4 p.m. on Thursday, March 31. Artwork must be two dimensional, framed no larger than 28” x 28” x 4” and can include paintings, drawings, collages, prints, photographs, computer generated art, or mixed media.  All artwork must be original. Contest entry rules can be found at http://robinkelly.house.gov/services/art-competition. Congresswoman Kelly will host a reception where she will announce the winner and runners-up on April 9, beginning at 9 a.m., in the Lee E. Dulgar Gallery at South Suburban College, 15800 State Street, South Holland. For more information, call Alan Banks at 708-679-0078. The high school art competition was established by the U.S. House of Representatives in 1982 to acknowledge and support the artistic talent of America’s young adults.

DePaul Art Museum, 935 W. Fullerton, Chicago

‘Split Complementary’ Exhibition – Through April 24

With refined appreciation for materials, but very different approaches, the art of Dianna Frid and Richard Rezac meets on complementary grounds at DePaul Art Museum’s “Split Complementary” exhibition. The exhibition features installations, sculptures, books and wall art by the artists, as well as rare books from the Special Collections Department of DePaul’s John T. Richard Library, and a variety of objects from the DePaul Art Museum’s permanent collection. The items from the museum’s collection include a red hat from South Africa, a Turkish Ottoman miniature painting covered with written notations, South American photographs from the 1930s and other objects and images. ‘Split Contemporary’ will be on display at the DePaul Art Museum through April 24. The DePaul Art Museum at 935 W. Fullerton, just east of the CTA’s Fullerton ‘L’ stop, is open Wednesday and Thursday from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m., Friday from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., and Saturday and Sunday from noon to 5 p.m. The museum is closed Mondays and Tuesdays. Admission is free. For more on the DePaul Art Museum’s upcoming exhibitions and events, call 773-325-7506 or visit http://bit.ly/DPAM15.

‘Nexo/Nexus: Latin American Connections in the Midwest’ – Through April 24

‘Nexo / Nexus: Latin American Connections in the Midwest’ will be on display at the DePaul Art Museum through April 24. Drawn from museum’s permanent collection, alongside loans from private collections, the exhibition features Latin American artists in the region and explores their influences, connections and unique reflections of the people, culture and place. This exhibition is presented in conjunction with the 2016 Latino Art Now! Conference taking place this April. The DePaul Art Museum at 935 W. Fullerton, just east of the CTA’s Fullerton ‘L’ stop, is open Wednesday and Thursday from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m., Friday from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., and Saturday and Sunday from noon to 5 p.m. The museum is closed Mondays and Tuesdays. Admission is free. For more on the DePaul Art Museum’s upcoming exhibitions and events, call 773-325-7506 or visit http://bit.ly/DPAM15.

Drama Group Studio Theatre, 330 West 202nd Street, Chicago Heights

‘Bleacher Bums’ – Opens Friday, February 26

The Drama Group is excited to present the rollicking sports comedy, ‘Bleacher Bums’ directed by Michael J Renzi. Performances will be held at the Drama Group Studio Theatre on February 26, 27, March 3, 4 & 5 at 7:30 p.m. and matinees on February 28 & March 6 at 2:00 p.m. ‘Bleacher Bums’ takes place in the bleachers of Chicago’s Wrigley Field. The characters are a bunch of die-hard Chicago Cubs fans, watching a game in progress on a summer afternoon. The rowdy group consisting of a rabid cheerleader, a blind man, a bathing beauty, a nerd and various other local denizens, have been gathering religiously for some time and know each other; even if they might not necessarily like or tolerate each other. Beer is being drunk, hot dogs are being eaten, and friendly wagers start to take on increasing importance. Conceived by Joe Mantegna and written by The Organic Theatre Company of Chicago in 1977. 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 additional information regarding Drama Group activities, please visit our Web site at: www.dramagroup.org.

‘The Velveteen Rabbit’ – Tickets Now on Sale

The Drama Group Daytime Children’s Theatre proudly presents ‘The Velveteen Rabbit’ Wednesday, March 16 through Sunday, March 20, 2016. Come see this timeless musical inspired by Margery Williams classic story of a stuffed toy rabbit made real by a child’s enduring love. A family favorite comes to life! Introduce LIVE theatre to young children, schools, scout troops and daycare. Performances are Wed., Thurs., Fri., March 16, 17 and 18 at 9:30 am and 12 noon – Sat., March 19 at 10 am and 1 pm – Sunday, March 20 at 1 pm at The Drama Group Studio Theatre 330W. 202nd Street in Chicago Heights – 1 block North of Marian Catholic High School. Tickets are only $6.00 in advance, $5.00 for groups of 25+ and $7.00 at the door. Activity Guides are available as well as a Question and Answer Session and Photo Opportunity with the cast immediately following each performance. Call the Box Office at 708-755-3444 to purchase your tickets today! Visit our website at www.dramagroup.org and navigate through all of the entertainment options available. The Drama Group has been bringing Broadway to the South Suburbs since 1931 and was the sole recipient of the 2015 Award for Excellence in Community Theater. The children’s theatre began in 1994 as a way to introduce LIVE theatre to families and younger members of the surrounding communities. A summer Kids Camp and free Staged Readings have been added to our continuing schedule of musicals, plays, comedies and dramas. The Drama Group is an all-volunteer Community Theatre and can always use a helping hand. If you are interested in becoming part of the Drama Group, please contact us. You’ll be glad you did!

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

Insider’s View of Hyde Park: The Art-Lovers Community – Limited Seating – Registration Now in Progress

Hyde Park is the quintessential arts community. Known for its acclaimed museums and dynamic neighborhood centers, Hyde Park is a haven for artists, curators and casual connoisseurs. Peter Slevin, Washington Post staff writer has said that “Hyde Park is all about the mix.” Get an insider’s view of this vibrant destination on Saturday, April 16 on an all-day tour with Governors State University’s Nathan Manilow Sculpture Park Director Geoff Bates. The tour will focus on exploring significant works of sculpture and design. The chartered bus tour, “Hyde Park: Public & Private,” runs from 8:30 a.m. – 5:45 p.m. and includes:

  • A Visit to the Hyde Park Art Center, featuring exhibits “Who Cares for the Sky?” and “Rodrigo Lara Zendejas’ La Paz”
  • A visit to University of Chicago’s Smart Museum
  • Lunch at The Currency Exchange Café
  • A Tour of Theaster Gates most recent project, the celebrated Stony Island Arts Bank
  • A visit to Chicago master sculptor Lorado Taft’s Fountain of Time sculpture

The day will conclude with a wine reception at the home of retired professor and collector Dan Parker, who will share insights on his private collection of African and African-American art. The all-inclusive fee for the tour is $125, and seating is limited. Reservations for the tour can be made by contacting 708-235-7559. Chicago residents who are interested in joining the group in Hyde Park will be provided with directions for meeting the bus when they make their reservations. The Nathan Manilow Sculpture Park at Governors State University presents important artwork by a variety of nationally and internationally recognized sculptors. Thirty-two large-scale works are currently sited across over 100 acres of prairie landscape and are accessible to the public free-of-charge from dawn to dusk, 365 days a year. For more information about the park and its programs, visit our website at www.govst.edu/sculpture.

National Veterans Art Museum (NVAM), 4041 North Milwaukee Avenue, Chicago

‘Operation Mom’s Couch’ – Opens Friday, February 26

The NVAM announces the opening of its solo exhibition ‘Operation Mom’s Couch’ —the newest exploration of the veteran experience through the lens of an Airman and his cultural consumption of war stemming back to early childhood memories, juxtaposed with his lived authentic enlisted experience. The way in which war is broadcast to the public and consumed on couches all across the world—becoming a daily part of the home environment—is a phenomenon explored by retired Air Force veteran, and award-winning artist: Eric J. Garcia. The exhibition will open on February 26, 2016 with a reception from 6 – 9 PM. Eric J. Garcia will deliver the keynote speech. The exhibit will run through August 27. Known for mixing history and culture with contemporary themes, Eric J. Garcia creates art that expands the genre beyond aesthetics.  Garcia has shown in numerous national and international exhibitions, has received many awards such as the prestigious Jacob Javits Fellowship and is currently an artist in residence at the Hyde Park Art Center.  Originally from Albuquerque, New Mexico, Garcia came to Chicago in 2007, to study at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago where he earned his Masters of Fine Arts degree.  A versatile artist working in an assortment of media, from hand-printed posters, to published political cartoons, to sculptural installations, they all have a common goal of educating and challenging. While the NVAM is one of the only museums in the world to collect and exhibit artwork exclusively created by veterans in a permanent exhibition, it also provides important programming for veterans, their families, and the community. For more information about the National Veterans Art Museum, visit www.nvam.org, or call 312-326-0270.

Park Forest Historical Society, 227 Monee Road, Park Forest

‘Step Back Into a 1950s Valentines Day’ – Through March 5

Through March 5, the 1950s Park Forest House Museum, at 227 Monee Road (inside St. Mary’s Catholic Church) in Park Forest, Illinois is decorated with vintage valentines and decorations, in the exhibit, ‘Step Back Into a 1950s Valentines Day.’ The classroom, representing Park Forest’s first school, is decorated for a 1950s Valentines Day class 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.  This year, the exhibit will include a display of antique Valentines, some dating to 1880. Hours are Wednesdays and Saturdays, from 1:00 p.m. to 3:30 p.m.; and by appointment on other days. There is a donation of $5 per adult; children 12 & under free with adult. For additional information, contact: Jane Nicoll at 708-481-4252 or Mike Gans at 708-305-3308 or visit www.parkforesthistory.org.

Park Forest Public Library, 400 Lakewood Boulevard

The following events are scheduled the week of February 21:

  • Monday, February 22 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 February 22 at 6:30 p.m. – Special Movie Night: The Rosa Park Story — “A seamstress (Rosa Parks) recalls events leading to her act of peaceful defiance that prompted the 1955 bus boycott in Montgomery, Alabama.”
  • Tuesday, February 23 at 3:30 p.m. — Lego Creative Building — We’re excited to add Lego Creative Building 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.
  • Tuesday, February 23 at 4 p.m. — Color-Rama Coloring Circle — Are you a teen looking to take a break after school with a fun, fresh activity? Come relieve stress and show your creativity with other teens in our coloring circle!
  • Tuesday, February 23 at 7 p.m. – Pajama Storytime — 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, February 24 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, February 24 at 3:30 p.m. — Crazy 8’s Math Club — Crazy 8’s is an over-the-top after school club that’s designed to get you fired up about math! This is an 8 week program. Every week you’ll build stuff, run and jump, make music, make a mess, and make friendships at the same time. It’s time for math to become the cool thing to do after school. Sign up today! Registration is required.
  • Wednesday, February 24 at 4 p.m. – Color Me Happy Circle — Our new circle is the perfect way to step back from the stress of everyday life and enjoy some relaxation! All supplies will be provided.
  • Wednesday, February 24 at 6:30 p.m. – Writer’s Workshop — Want to improve your skills as a writer? Interested in sharing your ideas or written work with others? Come to the Park Forest Library and join other creators in our bi-monthly writers’ group, led by James Pressler, for all your writing wishes. Writers of all skill levels are welcomed.
  • Thursday, February 25 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, February 25 at 3:30 a.m. – Art in the Afternoon — Unleash your inner artist! Drop in to create an amazing project of your own. Ages 12 and under.
  • Friday, February 26 at 1 p.m. — Senior Travelogue: Topic TBA
  • Friday, February 26 at 1 p.m. — Teen Tech Zone presents: Paper Towns — “After an all-night adventure, Quentin’s life-long crush, Margo, disappears, leaving behind clues that Quentin and his friends follow on the journey of a lifetime.”
  • Friday, February 26 at 3 p.m. — DIY “Kid Inventors” — Join us to create whatever you want! We provide the materials.

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

Potpourri of Lectures Series – Thursday, February 25

The Potpourri of Lectures Series will be held on Thursday, February 25 at 10:30 p.m. in the Library’s Ringering Room. This week’s lecture is “Is Patronage Dead – The Shakman Decree in the New Millennium” with Peter Monahan. For additional information call 708-748-3731 or visit www.pfpl.org.

Digital Services Coordinator Position – Applications Now Being Accepted

The Park Forest Public Library is looking for an energetic, tech-savvy information professional to fill the full-time position of Digital Services Coordinator. To view the job posting, which explains duties, requirements, and how to apply, click here.

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

Annual PSC Foundation Special Event Invites Guests ‘On the Boardwalk’ – Tickets Now on Sale

Each year, hundreds of PSC students turn to the PSC Foundation for assistance paying for tuition, fees and textbooks. To provide financial assistance for PSC students, the PSC Foundation is hosting its annual scholarship fundraiser at 6 p.m., Saturday, March 5, at the Olympia Fields Country Club, located at 2800 Country Club Drive in Olympia Fields. This year’s theme is ‘On the Boardwalk,’ with cocktails and dinner followed by entertainment and boardwalk games. The annual special event is held to raise money through donations, dinner reservations, and a silent auction. All proceeds will benefit student scholarships at PSC. Special “Spotlight Scholars” will be recognized at the event during the annual “Stand Up for Scholarships” presentation. There is still time to make reservations to attend the event. For more information, contact the PSC Foundation at 708-709-3631. The Prairie State College Foundation is a non-profit organization committed to excellence in education by promoting Prairie State College and enhancing opportunities for students. Local professionals serve as the Board of Directors and donate their time and resources to seek financial support for student scholarships and college projects that benefit student learning.  For more information about the PSC Foundation, visit www.prairiestate.edu/foundation.

‘Memory: An Exhibition of Portraiture Evoking Memory’ – Through March 9

PSC is hosting, ‘Memory: An Exhibition of Portraiture Evoking Memory,” in the Christopher Art Gallery on the main campus in Chicago Heights. The exhibit will run through Wednesday, March 9. The exhibit features works from artists Ellen Holtzblatt, Judith Roth, John P. Smolko, Joseph Taylor and Julian Williams. 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 to 7 p.m. on Wednesday and Thursday. Visits also can be made by appointment. For additional information about the gallery, upcoming exhibits or to make an appointment for a visit, call (708) 709-7738 or visit prairiestate.edu/artgallery.

Roosevelt University Gage Gallery, 18 South Michigan Avenue, Chicago

Author, Gina Frangello to Read Selection from ‘A Life in Men’ – Monday, February 29

Gina Frangello, award-winning author of ‘A Life in Men,’ will read at Roosevelt University on Monday, February 29 as the University’s Creative Writing Program kicks off its spring reading series at 5 p.m. in Room 700 of the University’s Gage Building, 18 S. Michigan Ave., Chicago. Chosen as an official book club selection for Nylon Magazine, The Rumpus and The Nervous Breakdown, and also optioned for a film adaptation by Universal Cable Productions/Denver & Deliah, ‘A Life in Men’ is a novel about a young woman’s adventures with men whose personalities and ways run the gamut – from funny to violent to quirky. Co-founding editor of Other Voices Books, Frangello is currently at work on a new novel, ‘Every Kind of Waiting,’ which is set to be released by Counterpoint Press in the fall. She is currently a visiting writer and lecturer in Roosevelt’s Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing Program. Sponsored by Roosevelt’s Creative Writing Program, the University’s literary magazine, Oyez Review, and Roosevelt’s Department of Literature and Languages, the reading is free and open to the public.  Doors open for the reading at 4:30 p.m. and refreshments will be served. For more information, please contact Christian TeBordo at [email protected] or 312-341-2417.

‘One Percent: Privilege in a Time of Global Inequality’ – Through May 28

At a time when studies suggest the gap between rich and poor is growing, Roosevelt University’s Gage Gallery will present a provocative and artistically driven photo exhibit that examines wealth and privilege around the world today. Opening for the first time in the United States, ‘One Percent: Privilege in a Time of Global Inequality’ features images by some of the world’s best photographers who have captured affluence in many different settings and situations. The exhibit will run through May 28. Featuring the work of more than 30 photographers who are known internationally, the exhibit is based on the book, One Percent: Privilege in a Time of Global Inequality. The show has been touring the world since September 2015 when it opened at the Pingyao International Photography Festival in Pingyao, China, making stops in Dubai, Germany, Nigeria, Guatemala, France and Bosnia and Herzegovina. Sponsored by Roosevelt’s Department of Economics and College of Arts and Sciences, One Percent: Privilege in a Time of Global Inequality is possible thanks to generous financial support of Susan B. Rubnitz and Elyse Koren-Camarra. Exhibit viewing hours are 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Mondays through Fridays and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturdays. For more information, call 312-341-6458 or visit www.roosevelt.edu/gagegallery.

Rich Township Senior Services, 297 Liberty Drive, Park Forest

Senior Trip to New Buffalo – Tickets Now on Sale

On March 16, the Rich Township Senior Services will shuffle off to Buffalo, New Buffalo that is, to enjoy a day at the Four Winds Casino in Michigan.  The cost of the trip is $27.  You will receive $15 in free slot play as well as $10 off your lunch.  Please call 708-748-5454 to reserve your seat.

Tall Grass Art Association, 367 Artists Walk, Park Forest

58th Annual Beaux Arts Ball Fundraiser – Reservations Required by Friday, February 26

Tall Grass Arts Association would be honored by your presence at its 58th Annual Beaux Arts Ball fundraiser to benefit the Tall Grass Gallery and School. The event will be held on Saturday, March 19 at the Glenwoodie Golf Club, 19301 State Street, Glenwood. The evening will begin at 6 p.m. with a cocktail reception and silent auction followed by dinner, a live auction, basket raffle and dancing. Guests will have the opportunity to support Tall Grass’ mission to cultivate and promote artists and the arts in a unique environment filled with beauty and creativity. Tickets are $110 per person (open bar). This year’s honorees are Glenna and Dudley Elvery and Richard Hunt. Reservations can be made through the Tall Grass website: www.tallgrassarts.org or call: 708-748-3377. For more information please call or email: [email protected]. Please respond for reservations by February 26.

‘Getting There’ Exhibit – Through February 27

Tall Grass Arts Association exhibit ‘Getting There’ will run through February 27. The exhibit is free and open to the public. ‘Getting There’ is an exhibit of sixty-seven works which present a broad range of images to interpret the idea of moving, traveling seeking the curious and beautiful, and enjoying the adventure of moving down the highways, across the water, over the rails and through the skies. The works in ‘Getting There’ include evocative, highly detailed black and white and color photographs; digitally manipulated images; drawings; oil, acrylic and watercolor paintings; woodcut and silkscreen prints; mixed media, collage and assemblage works; and sculpture pieces in metal, wood, and ceramic. Ranging from small 8″ squares to a large installation sculpture piece that measures 10′ by 10′ by 7′, the exhibit provides realistic looks at historic train engines, police cars, and three-mast tall ships. Also on view will be abstract, inventive, whimsical, and mysterious compositions based on the blur of Marathon racers, the geometry of bicycle tracks, the overlapping fractions of images we experience speeding down the Interstate, and many other aspects of travel, time passing, and dreams of flight, the unknown, and freedom. Gallery hours are Tuesday through Saturday from 11 a.m.to 4 p.m. For additional information, visit www.tallgrassarts.org or call 708-748-3377.

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

‘A Curious Reality’— Opens Friday, February 26

USG will be hosting a National Juried Exhibit ‘A Curious Reality’ which has works that portray alternate universes and realities. In an era of pop culture that feeds us both mythological creatures and the apocalypse, Union Street Gallery will be exhibiting art that not only challenges the perceptions of reality but also engages in artistic expression within science fiction, mythology, gaming, and futuristic themes. For those of us who have grown up with the X-Files and video gaming, these conceptions of imagined futures, alternate realities, and alien life have influenced our awareness of these possibilities. Artists from all over the country have submitted works such as full scale models of androids to re-imagined versions of classic art with a science fiction twist. Come join us at the opening reception for ‘A Curious Reality’ which will be Friday February 26th from 6-9 p.m. at the Gallery. For additional information or Gallery hours, call 708-754-2601 or visit http://www.unionstreetgallery.org

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

Free Social Issues Movie Night – Saturday, February 27

On Saturday, February 27th at 7p.m., UUCC will screen the documentary film ‘Divest: The Climate Movement On Tour.’ The documentary chronicles 350.org’s “Do the Math” bus tour across the United Stated in 2012 as it launched the fossil fuel divestment campaign onto the national and ultimately international stage. The film features Bill McKibben, Naomi Klein, Desmond Tutu and others. Join in the lively discussion following the film. Free tea, coffee and snacks will be provided. Bring a snack to share. Invite friends! For additional information, visit www.uuccpf.org or call 708-481-5339.

Black History Month Events

Congresswoman Robin Kelly, 600 Holiday Plaza Drive, Matteson

Black History Month Video Contest – Submissions Due Wednesday, February 24

Congresswoman Robin Kelly invites students from kindergarten through 8th grade to participate in her annual Black History Month Video Contest that honors the accomplishments of African-Americans. In the short video, students can describe why it’s important to celebrate Black History Month, the moment in African American history that resonates most with them, or how they believe schools should celebrate the month. The top videos will be posted on Rep. Kelly’s website, while others submitted will appear on her YouTube channel. The video must be 90 seconds or shorter, and answer one of the following questions:

  • Why is it important to celebrate Black History Month?
  • What moment in black history is most relevant to you?
  • How do you think schools should celebrate Black History Month?

Submissions should be sent to [email protected] no later than 5 p.m., Wednesday, February 24. The top videos will be announced the following Monday, February 29. For more information about the contest or for help with technical aspects of creating their video, students should visit http://robinkelly.house.gov/Black-History-Contest.  To view last year’s entries, please visit Congresswoman Kelly’s YouTube page.

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

Fourth Annual Black Women Rock Awards Ceremony – Saturday, February 27

In celebration of African American History month, GSU’s Student Life Department will present the Fourth Annual Black Women Rock Awards Ceremony on Saturday, February 27 at 6:30 p.m., in the Center for Performing Arts. This red carpet event will celebrate women in grand style. This event acknowledges the contributions of GSU students, faculty, and community leaders at the university and in the region and thanks them for their contributions. The celebration also features music, dance, and tribute performances by local artists, including a performance by the 2015 US Finals Champions, Exclusive All Star Dance Team from Park Forest. Black Women Rock is a free event, and is open to the public.

Matteson Area Public Library District, 801 School Avenue, Matteson

Black History Month Events at the Matteson Public Library

This year, to celebrate Black History Month, The Matteson Area Public Library District, is hosting speakers that will entertain and inform our community on different topics covering Black History. The event is free and open to the public.

Saturday, February 27 – History of Bid Whist

Ronald Allen will talk about the History of Bid Whist at 1 p.m. Mr. Allen is the author of “The Evolution of Bid Whist” His book  combines both a thorough investigation of the origins of Bid Whist and an interesting and informative presentation of how the game has evolved and continued to grow from slavery into the 21st century. Register for the event at http://bit.ly/1Si72LW

For additional information visit: http://www.mattesonpubliclibrary.org or contact Lisa Korajczyk at 708-748-4431, or email lkorajczyk @mapld.org.

Park Forest Public Library, 400 Lakewood Boulevard

Special Movie Night: The Rosa Parks Story

On Monday February 22 at 6:30 p.m., the Library will host a special movie night featuring The Rosa Park Story where seamstress, Rosa Parks, recalls events leading to her act of peaceful defiance that prompted the 1955 bus boycott in Montgomery, Alabama. For additional information call 708-748-3731 or visit www.pfpl.org.

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

Black History Month Events at PSC

Wednesday, February 24

From 9:30 to 10:45 a.m. on February 24, the PSC Library is hosting an African American Read-In, offered in partnership with Professor Alanna Cotch’s African American Literature class. Students will perform public readings that feature African American writers. The event is part of the National African American Read-In, hosted by the Black Caucus of the National Council of Teachers of English (NCTE) and NCTE, and is designed to bring friends and community members together to share books and promote literacy.

The event is free and open to the public. Additional information is available at www.ncte.org/aari.

Roosevelt University, 430 South Michigan Avenue, Chicago

Black History Month Conference – February 25 – 27

Roosevelt University and other area institutions and organizations will mark the history of the nation’s Black Freedom Movement and look at today’s continuing struggles against racial injustice and other inequalities during a February 25-27 Black History Month conference. The conference entitled “Come Let Us Build a New World Together: Fifty Years after the Mississippi Summer Project” begins on Feb. 25 at Benedictine University in Lisle where teachers, social workers, health professionals and others working with African American populations are expected to gather for opening discussions. Then on Feb. 26 and 27, the conference moves to Roosevelt University’s second-floor Congress Lounge, 430 S. Michigan Ave., Chicago, where veterans of the nation’s civil rights movement and some of today’s leading activists will be joining together for an inter-generational civil rights experience. One of the highlights of the three-day event will be an appearance and lecture on Saturday, Feb. 27 at Roosevelt by Bree Newsome, the activist who took down the Confederate flag in Charleston, S.C. following last year’s mass murders of African American worshippers at a Charleston church. Other highlights include: a panel discussion on police brutality led by young activists involved in current campaigns against police violence and attorney Stan Willis, who took on Chicago police and former commander Jon Burge over repeated police torture; a lecture by lifelong civil rights activist and well-known Chicagoan and Roosevelt alumnus Timuel Black; music by the Freedom Singers and the Mark Durham Trio; and appearances by veterans of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC), who will be telling their stories and engaging in discussions with some of today’s leading young activists. The conference is open to the public at a cost of $10 per day. To register, visit http://tinyurl.com/new-world-together.  Roosevelt University students, faculty and staff can attend for free by contacting Erik Gellman at [email protected]

South Suburban College (SSC), 15800 South State Street, South Holland

Black History Month Event at SSC

“How to Feel Good About Yourself”
Tuesday, February 23, 11:00 a.m. – 12:15 p.m., Kindig Performing Arts Center
Yusuf Ali El has published five books in the last three years. “How to Feel Good About Yourself,” a self-empowerment manual, is his current pride and joy. Yusuf received his B.A. from the University of New Hampshire and a Masters in Literature from Governors State University. Please join us for this exciting presentation. All students will receive a raffle ticket to win his manual. Ten winners will be selected and additional copies of his book will be available for purchase. For more information on the event, please contact Corrie Gray of Student Programming, at 708-596-2000, ext. 2499.

Educational Lectures & Opportunities

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

‘Freedom Seekers and the Underground Railroad’ – Registration Now in Progress

The Knowledge Exchange is now accepting registrations for its course ‘Freedom Seekers and the Underground Railroad.’  Join author Larry McClellan in this special 4-week course for an exploration of the movement of freedom seekers and the networks of the Underground Railroad that supported them in the decades before the Civil War.  Looking at: Slavery and Abolitionism in Illinois; Freedom Stories of Caroline Quarles and others; Black Leadership and the Fugitive Slave Act of 1850; and Kidnappings and the Great Chicago Exodus. The course will take place in classroom B2201 at Governors State University, 1 University Parkway, University Park on Fridays, February 19 & 26, March 4 & 11 from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m.  The registration fee is $36.50.  REGISTER HERE

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

‘ATTITUDE: The Cornerstone of Leadership’ – Registration Now in Progress

Pat Sullivan, author of ‘ATTITUDE: The Cornerstone of Leadership,’ will be the guest speaker for a Friday, March 18 event, hosted by the PSC Corporate and Continuing Education Department. The program is scheduled from 10 a.m. to noon, in the Conference Center of the PSC main campus in Chicago Heights. Sponsored by BMO Harris Bank, the program is intended to teach attendees the simple, practical concepts and attitude adjustments that lead to true leadership success, allowing business leaders and their teams to meet their goals. Guests will learn the acronym, ATTITUDE, through easy-to-remember keys to success and daily behavioral adjustments. Sullivan has dedicated his career to inspiring people. He has more than four decades of collegiate and high school coaching experience, and has been inducted into six different halls of fame. The cost to attend is $45, and includes a networking lunch after Sullivan’s presentation. For more information or to register, contact Susan Sebastian, manager, business solutions, corporate education, at 708-709-7895 or [email protected]. PSC offers a wide variety of non-credit courses, seminars, and workshops as part of a commitment to serve the community by providing educational, informational, cultural, and recreational activities that appeal to special interests. Students may learn vocational skills, enhance their personal growth, or explore career options. For more information, visit www.prairiestate.edu/training.

South Suburban College (SSC), 15800 South State Street, South Holland

Breakfast with BCI Workshop on Time Management – Registration Now in Progress

The SSC Business & Career Institute (BCI) presents a Breakfast with BCI Workshop titled Stop the Insanity!! Bolstering Your Time Management Toolbox on Thursday, March 3rd from 8:30 a.m. – 10:00 a.m., with check-in and continental breakfast to begin at 8:15 a.m. This workshop will be held in the South Suburban College Mi-Jack Conference Room (1st floor) and will be presented by Colleen Klimczak, Certified Professional Organizer. In this interactive and hands-on workshop, Colleen will provide practical and useful suggestions on the following topic areas:

  • Managing priorities
  • Overcoming perfectionism and procrastination
  • Tasks and to-dos
  • Smart scheduling
  • Routines that work

You will leave with sure-fire ways to keep your office and calendar more organized and efficient, leading to a less stressed you. Colleen Klimczak, CPO, is a Certified Professional Organizer and owner of Peace of Mind Professional Organizing, LLC. Since 2003, she has helped hundreds get a handle on their space, stuff, paper and time, finding Peace of Mind in their personal and professional lives. Proficient in both residential and small business organizing, Colleen speaks to professional groups, women’s guilds and Mom’s Groups, and at local libraries, recreation departments and park districts. The cost of the workshop with continental breakfast is $15 per person or $10 per person if three or more from the same company attend. Check, Visa, MasterCard and Discover are accepted. Reservations and payment are required by 5:00 p.m. on February 29th. For more information or to register, please call 708-596-2000, ext. 3254 or email [email protected].

Basic Nurse Assistant Training Program – Registration Now in Progress

The SSC non-credit Basic Nurse Assistant Training Program (BNATP) is running a daytime cohort session from March 21st through May 10th at the Oak Forest Center. Successful completion of this non-credit course is required in order to become eligible to take the State of Illinois Nursing Assistant Certification Examination. SSC offers more contact hours for training than traditional CNA programs along with an additional free refresher course prior to the state certification exam. Each individual who successfully passes the certification exam will then be placed on the State Registry for Health Care Workers. Instruction includes basic nursing skills through lecture, campus laboratory and supervised clinical experiences at a long-term health care facility. The classes meet at the Oak Forest Center on Mondays and Tuesdays from 8:00 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. with lab and clinical instruction rotating on Wednesdays and Thursdays from 8:00 a.m. – 1:30 p.m. and 7:00 a.m. – 2:30 p.m., respectively. Students must submit a health physical, proof of health insurance and completion of a Livescan fingerprint criminal history record. The total cost of the program is $1,299.99 which includes tuition, textbook/workbook, stethoscope and blood pressure cuff, gait belt and the cost of the state competency exam upon successful completion of the course. (Financial Aid cannot cover the cost of this program, nor the physical and background check.) There will also be another round of classes running in the summer from June 6th through July 28th. Please call 708-596-2000, ext. 2497 or email [email protected] for more information. The Oak Forest Center is located at 16333 South Kilbourn Avenue. Please visit our website at www.ssc.edu for more information.

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

Park Forest Environment Commission, 350 Victory Drive

Discussion on Community Gardening – Saturday, March 12

The Park Forest Environment Commission invites you to learn gardening with eight free instructional sessions. The first session will be held on Saturday, March 12 at 10:30 a.m. with a discussion on community gardens. This year’s sessions will take place in a new location, the Wetlands Discovery Center, at the Park Forest Aqua Center, 30 N. Orchard Drive.

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

Urban Forestry and Landscaping Classes — Registration Now in Progress

PSC is offering four continuing education classes to advance your skills in urban forestry and landscaping. These sessions will be held at the Matteson Area Center, 4821 Southwick Drive, and are geared for professional arborists, urban community foresters, tree care professionals, landscape professionals and master gardeners. These classes have been approved for Landscape Industry Certified recertification at 1 CEU per hour of instruction attended. For more information on the National Association of Landscape Professionals (NALP) recertification, please visit the NALP Recertification Center at www.landscapeprofessionals.org. Continuing Education Units approved from International Society of Arboriculture.

Landscape Concepts

Explore the variety of landscape components available within the industry. Learn the difference between permanent structures, water features and living elements of plants and trees. Understand the advantages and disadvantages of each to make appropriate selections when incorporating them into your landscape concept.

Dates:                   Saturdays, February 27 through March 5

Time:                     8 a.m. to 12 p.m.

Cost:                      $129

Course Code:     GSCOR-009-C1

Earn 8 CEUs from NALP

Landscape Plants: Usage and Application

Learn proper plant selection to create functional and eye appealing landscapes for your clients. Through interactive activities, explore the ways plants, shrubs, trees, and ground covers impact the site components and maintenance.

Dates:                   Tuesdays, March 1 through 15

Time:                     8 a.m. to 12 p.m.

Cost:                      $159

Course Code:     GSCOR-010-C1

Earn 12 CES from NAPL

Residential Landscape Design

Design residential and commercial landscapes that create attractive and functional green spaces for your customers. Learn step-by-step methods to establish client goals, produce site drawings, create the job budget, develop the proposal and sell the landscape plan.

Dates:                   Wednesdays, March 2 through 16

Time:                     8 a.m. to 12 p.m.

Cost:                      $159

Course Code:     GSCOR-011-C1

Earn 12 CEUs from NALP

Best Management Practices for Community Trees

Gain an understanding of the full spectrum of utilizing trees as part of a professional landscape. During this industry-specific, interactive course, professionals will learn the components of tree anatomy, criteria for selection, and methods of care. In addition, participants will explore ways to advance their careers within the urban forestry profession.

Dates:                   Saturdays, March 12 through 19

Time:                     8 a.m. to 12 p.m.

Cost:                      $129

Course Code:     CSCOR-008-C1

Earn:                      8 CEUs from the International Society of Arboriculture

Registration Information

  1. Visit prairiestate.edu/webadvisor
  2. Click Instant Enrollment
  3. Click register and pay for non-credit courses and programs
  4. Refer to course codes listed for the specific course

For additional information, call 708-709-7919.

Thorn Creek Nature Preserve, 247 Monee Road, Park Forest

Make a Gourd Birdhouse – Registration Now in Progress

Register now to ‘Make a Gourd Birdhouse’ at a fun family workshop. Join artist and teacher Pat Moore on Sunday, Marcy 6 to make a natural style birdhouse from a gourd. There will be two sessions: 1 p.m. to 2 p.m. and 2:30 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. Program is for all ages and there is a fee of $10 per house. All materials will be provided. Registration is required. This program is co-sponsored by the Thorn Creek Audubon Society. For additional information or to register, call 708-747-6320 or visit www.tcwoods.org.

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.

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

Park Forest Health Department Nurses Plus, 350 Victory Drive

Free Glucose/Cholesterol Screening – Thursday, February 25

The Park Forest Health Department Nurses Plus, 350 Victory Drive will offer free glucose/cholesterol screening on Thursday, February 25. Those interested in taking part should fast 10 to 12 hours. For additional information or to make an appointment, call 708-748-5454.

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.

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].

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].

This & That

Congresswoman Robin Kelly, 600 Holiday Plaza Drive, Matteson

Housing Expo – Registration Now in Progress

Congresswoman Robin Kelly will host a Housing Expo on Saturday, March 5, from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m., at the New Early Learning Center, located at 729 Engle St., in Dolton. Participants will learn about loan modification, foreclosure prevention, down-payment assistance programs, and how to appeal property taxes. Banks and agencies, including Neighborhood Housing Services (NHS), Wells Fargo, Chase, BMO, and more will be on hand to assist homeowners and tenants. Register by visiting http://reprobinkelly.eventbrite.com. For more information, contact Alan Banks at 708-679-0078 or at [email protected].

Park Forest Baseball

Registration for 2016 Season – Through March 17

Registration for the upcoming Park Forest Baseball season will be held on the following dates:

  • March 5 from 12 to 4 p.m. at St. Ireneaus Church, 78 Cherry Street;
  • March 12 from 12 to 4 p.m. at St. Ireneaus Church, 78 Cherry Street; and
  • March 17 from 6 to 9 p.m. at Village Hall, 350 Victory Drive.

Park Forest Baseball is a youth baseball league offering boys and girls, ages 4 to 14, the opportunity to learn the skills and fun of baseball.

Coaches and managers are needed. Call 708-975-1294 or visit www.parkforestbaseball.org for additional information including dates and fees.

Park Forest Senior Commission, 350 Victory Drive

Community Safety Presentation – Registration Required

A community safety presentation will be held on Thursday, March 3, from 1 to 3 p.m. at Dining on the Green, 349 Main Street. The event features speakers from the Park Forest Fire Department, the Park Forest Police Department, and the South Suburban Family Shelter. Refreshments from Southland Caterers will be served. This event is sponsored by the Park Forest Senior Commission, is open to all, and is free to attend. Register by February 29 by calling the Park Forest Health Department at 708-748-1118.

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

Veterans Service Fair – Wednesday, March 16

The Student Veterans Center at PSC is hosting a Veterans Services Fair from 9 a.m. to noon, Wednesday, March 16, in the Conference Center of the college’s main campus in Chicago Heights. Representatives from the Cook County and Illinois Departments of Veterans Affairs will be available for questions. Additional information for veterans also will be available, including housing, legal and educational information, as well as résumé writing guides and more. Veterans from any period and their families are welcome to attend to network as well as learn about available services. For more information about the fair, contact Sanon at 708-709-3567 or email [email protected]. The Student Veterans Center at PSC provides academic and social support to veterans with an emphasis on graduation and successful integration into the college. At the center, PSC student veterans can study and socialize with fellow veterans and find information about the services available to them at PSC and in the community. For more information on the Student Veterans Center and all veterans services at PSC, visit www.prairiestate.edu/veterans.

South Suburban College (SSC), 15800 South State Street, South Holland

2016 Women’s Conference – Tickets Now on Sale

SSC proudly announces Judy Ferraro as the Keynote Speaker for the 2016 Chicago Women’s Conference on Friday, March 18, located at the college’s Main Campus in South Holland, Illinois. This year’s theme “Reach for The Stars” marks the 8th annual event that the college’s Business and Career Institute (BCI) is planning for women of all backgrounds ages 18 and up to come together for one day dedicated exclusively to women. The positive feedback and participation has grown tremendously since the event’s inception. Last year over 350 participants and 50 vendors participated in this truly unique opportunity. Judy Ferraro owned and operated her own scrap metal business and after 18 years in the industry, she decided to shed the glitz and glamour of scrap metal to form a consulting firm for personal development, sales and leadership training. Studying in Chicago’s comedy circle, Judy uses her comedic background and excellent interactive skills when building seminars that are informative and fun and emphasize the importance of listening, the art of asking good questions and the ability to laugh at oneself. In addition to an exciting keynote from Ms. Ferraro, this year’s event will again include networking, shopping, and will feature over 15 speakers on topics including Personal Empowerment, Health & Wellness, and Business & Finance, along with a panel discussion “Stars – Straight Talk About Real Stuff” that will feature poignant discussions on the many areas of a woman’s life. The cost of admission is just $25 per person with advance registration, or $35 at the door. The conference fee includes a continental breakfast, lunch, and admission to all of the break-out sessions. Sponsorships are also available – event sponsors to date include: Supervisor Frank M. Zuccarelli – Thornton Township, MB Financial Bank, Ed Miniat, L.L.C., Thornton Township School District 205, State Representatives Will Davis, Anthony DeLuca, Thaddeus Jones and Al Riley, Illiana Financial, State Senator Donne Trotter, State Representatives Marcus C. Evans and Elgie Sims and Cook County Commissioner Stan Moore, Judge Fredrick Bates and Pat Heneghan for Judge. For more information, or to register for the 2016 Chicago Women’s Conference, please call 708-225-6055 or visit www.TheChicagoWomensConference.org.

Village of Park Forest, 350 Victory Drive

Register Now to Take Part in the 19th Annual Diversity Dinners

On Thursday, April 14, 2016, the 19th Annual Diversity Dinners will be held across the south suburbs. On this evening, residents will open their homes to celebrate rich diversity in small gatherings by sharing a meal and lively discussion, which can lead to greater understanding and some new friendships. The Diversity Dinners bring people of different races, religions, ethnicities, lifestyles and age together to enjoy a delicious dinner, discuss their common goals, understand differences, address misconceptions and offer solutions to strengthen our communities. This experience can open doors to enhanced appreciation for the unique mosaic of people, who live in the south suburbs. The event, funded by contributions from individuals, businesses and local organizations, is coordinated by the Villages of Flossmoor, Park Forest, Homewood, Richton Park and Olympia Fields; Homewood-Flossmoor High School District 233, Rich Township High School District 227, Congresswoman Robin Kelly, League of Women Voters Homewood-Flossmoor Area, League of Women Voters Park Forest Area, Center for Multicultural Communities and the National Coalition Building Institute (NCBI). The dinners are free for both the dinner hosts and guests. Although there is no charge for the dinner, each guest and host must register to participate. All guests must be at least 14 years old and the guests should be willing to go to the home assigned. Please plan to join other area residents on April 14th at the Diversity Dinners for a meaningful evening celebrating one of the priceless assets of the community. To obtain registration information, please visit the website at www.diversitydinners.com or contact Hildy Kingma at 708-283-5622 or e-mail [email protected]. The deadline for submitting guest registrations is March 15, 2016. The deadline for host registrations is March 8, 2016.