In and Around Park Forest Week of January 24, 2016


Park Forest, IL—(ENEWSPF)—January 24, 2016. Those living in the south suburbs have a history of supporting the arts and an appreciation of the importance of artistic education. To that end, the Illinois Philharmonic Orchestra will be holding ‘The Big Easy Gala 2016’ on Saturday, February 6 at the Olympia Fields Country Club. The pre-Mardi Gras festivities will include bourbon tastings, New Orleans-style jazz entertainment, a 5-star French Quarter-inspired menu and silent auction. Proceeds from the event will benefit the artistic and education programs of the Illinois Philharmonic Orchestra. Additional information about the event can be found in the ‘Arts & Entertainment’ section.

Most of us have had family or friends diagnosed with some form of cancer and can appreciate the devastating impact it has. The goal of the American Cancer Society is to save lives and finish the fight against cancer. To help in achieving these goals, representatives from the American Cancer Association will hold a Kickoff Celebration for Relay For Life of the Far South Suburbs on Tuesday, January 26 at the Richton Park Public Library. Relay For Life is a community event where teams and individuals camp out and take turns walking or running around a track or path. Each team has at least one participant on the track at all times and participates in fundraising that supports the American Cancer Society’s mission. Four million people participated in more than 6,100 events worldwide in 2015. You can find additional information about the Relay for Life and how you can help eradicate cancer in the ‘This & That’ 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 Cancellation – Monday, January 25

The Village Board meeting originally scheduled to meet on Monday, January 25 has been cancelled. The next scheduled Board Meeting is Monday, February 1 at 7 p.m.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.

Village Commissions & Advisory Boards

The following Park Forest Commission is scheduled to meet the week of January 24:

  • Wednesday, January 27 at 7 p.m. – Cable Communications Commission

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

Arts & Entertainment

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

Ain’t Misbehavin’ – Saturday, January 30

The Porchlight Music Theatre will perform ‘Ain’t Misbehavin’ on Saturday, January 30 at 8 p.m. at the Center for Performing Arts. Winner of the 2014 Joseph Jefferson Award for “Best Production – Revue,” Best Direction – Revue” for Brenda Didier, “Artistic Speculation” for conductor/pianist Austin Cook and one of Porchlight’s biggest hits ever returns with the original cast. Set in the jazz age when nightspots like the Cotton Club and the Savoy Ballroom were the playgrounds of high society, this tribute to the Harlem Renaissance is a rowdy, raunchy and humorous evening of fun that reflects an era of social change and Fats Waller’s view of life as a journey of pleasure and joy. Click here for preview. Tickets are $38 and $28. BUY TICKETS  For additional information, visit: http://www.govst.edu/About/Center_for_Performing_Arts/All_Events_by_Date/ or call 708-235-2222.

A Night of Spanish Dance – Tickets Now on Sale

The Ensemble Español Spanish Dance Theater will present A Night of Spanish Dance featuring “Bolero” and “Mil Clavos” on Saturday, February 6 at 8 p.m. Go on an epic journey through Spain with Ensemble Español Spanish Dance Theater’s celebration of Flamenco, classical, folkloric, and contemporary dance, set to traditional Spanish rhythms. In this 40th anniversary tribute, the company highlights Maurice Ravel’s most popular work, the Bolero, which premiered in Paris in 1929. Combining flamenco and contemporary dance styles, choreographer and rising star Ron de Jesus creates “Mil Clavos – One Thousand Nails.” Mil Clavos presents traditional Spanish dance in a modern context, referencing the clavos, or the nails that are pounded into the bottom of the dancer’s shoes. It affirms that the “nail” that holds time-honored traditions and modern sensibilities together is found in the artist’s dedication to their craft. Tickets are $28 which includes a sampling of regional food at 6:30 p.m. BUY TICKETS  For additional information, visit: http://www.govst.edu/About/Center_for_Performing_Arts/All_Events_by_Date/ or call 708-235-2222.

DePaul University Merle Reskin Theatre, 60 East Balbo Avenue, Chicago

‘Prospero’s Storm’ – Through February 20

DePaul University’s Merle Reskin Theatre will present ‘Prospero’s Storm’ through February 20th. ‘Prospero’s Storm’ has been adapted from William Shakespeare’s ‘The Tempest’ and recommended for those ages 8 and up. Wizard Prospero wields crashing sea-storms, airy spirits, savage ghost hounds, and terrifying creatures to exact revenge on his enemies—trapping them on his magical island. Will he learn mercy from his teenage daughter, or sink everyone into the sea? This vaudeville adaptation of Shakespeare’s ‘The Tempest’ uses puppets, singing, slapstick, and magic to weave an enchanting tale of fatherhood and forgiveness. Performances will take place on Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday at 10 a.m. and on Saturday and Sunday at 2 p.m. Please check the DePaul calendar (www.theatre.depaul.edu) for specific performance dates. Tickets are $10. College students with ID can purchase tickets for $5. For additional information or to purchase tickets, call 312-922-1999.

DePaul Art Museum, 935 W. Fullerton, Chicago

‘Split Complementary’ Exhibition – Opens January 28

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. Opening January 28, the exhibition will feature 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’ – Opens January 28

‘Nexo / Nexus: Latin American Connections in the Midwest’ will be on display at the DePaul Art Museum beginning January 28. 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.

DePaul University Sondra & Denis Healy Theatre, 2350 North Racine Avenue, Chicago

‘In the Blood’ – Through January 31

The Sondra & Denis Healy Theatre at DePaul University will present ‘In the Blood.’ Performance will take place through January 31. Performances will be at 7:30 p.m. on Wednesday through Saturday and at 2 p.m. on Sunday. In this modern day riff off on Hawthorne’s ‘The Scarlet Letter,’ Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Suzan-Lori Parks asks who has the right to the American Dream, directed by Nathan Singh, MFA Directing Class of 2017. Is poverty inescapable for individuals already in the cycle?​​​​​​​​ Hester la Negrita is a homeless single mother of five who dreams of finding beauty and love for her family despite her poverty-stricken life. As she struggles to defy the odds, she runs into a series of harsh and unexpected obstacles. Tickets are $15 and $5 for college students with ID. For additional information or to purchase tickets, call 773-325 7900 or visit www.theatre.depaul.edu.

Freedom Hall, 410 Lakewood Boulevard, Park Forest

Glenn Miller Orchestra – Tickets Now on Sale

Freedom Hall’s Senior Series will present the Glenn Mill Orchestra on Tuesday, February 9 at 11 a.m. The most popular and sought after big band in the world today for both concert and swing dance engagements. With its unique jazz sound, the Glenn Miller Orchestra is considered to be one of the greatest bands of all time. The present Glenn Miller Orchestra was formed in 1956 and has been touring consistently since, playing an average of 300 live dates a year all around the world. Tickets are $25. For additional information or to purchase tickets, call 708-747-0580.

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

The Big Easy: Gala 2016 – Tickets Now on Sale

The Big Easy: Gala 2016 will take place on Saturday, February 6 at 6 p.m. at the Olympia Fields Country Club, 2800 Country Club Dr. Join Maestro Danzmayr and the IPO family as we warm up winter with pre-Mardi Gras merriment including:

  • Bourbon tastings by Frankfort Spirits
  • New Orleans-style jazz entertainment featuring the Chicago Diamond Trio
  • A 5-star French Quarter-inspired menu
  • Whimsical theme entertainment stations
  • A fabulous silent auction with exclusive small vineyard wines, theater and dining certificates, vacation lodging, sports memorabilia and more

Reservations are $150/person (a portion is tax deductible). Proceeds benefit the artistic and education programs of the Illinois Philharmonic Orchestra. For additional information or to purchase tickets, visit https://secure.ticketsage.net/websales.aspx?u=ipo&pid=296594 or call 708-481-7744.

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 events are scheduled the week of January 24:

  • Monday, January 25 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 January 25 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.
  • Tuesday, January 26 at 3 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, January 26 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, January 27 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, January 27 at 3 p.m. – Healthy Living — Learn how to be healthier with Ms. Cari! Registration is required. Ages 12 and under. Registration is required.
  • Wednesday, January 27 at 6:30 p.m. — Writers’ 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, January 28 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, January 28 at 3 p.m. – Art in the Afternoon — Unleash your inner artist! Drop in to create an amazing project of your own. Ages 12 and under.
  • Friday, January 29 at 1 p.m. — Senior Travelogue: Glacier National Park — This month’s Senior Travelogue takes us to Glacier National Park, located in the northwest corner of Montana.
  • Friday, January 29 at 3 p.m. – Family Feud — It’s time for the Family Feud! We’ll be playing the beloved game today in kids’ zone.

For additional information or to register for an event 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.

Park Forest Recreation and Parks Department, 350 Victory Drive

‘Getting to the Heart of the Matter Valentine Dance’ – Registration Required by Monday, February 8

On behalf of American Heart Month, the Park Forest Recreation and Parks Department and Wright Fit Coaching will present ‘Getting to the Heart of the Matter Valentine Dance’ on Frida, February 12 from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. at Dining on The Green, 349 Main St., Park Forest. The event will include a night of food, dancing, raffles, photos and much more. The cost is $25 per person. This event is for adults only 21 and up. Registration deadline is Monday, February 8. To register call 708-748-2005 or online at www.villageofparkforest.com.

Tall Grass Art Association, 367 Artists Walk, Park Forest

‘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

‘Not Serious’ – Opens Wednesday, January 27

USG will feature the exhibit ‘Not Serious,’ a sculptural and installation-based work that is functional insofar as it provokes, allows, or promotes play. The exhibit will open on Wednesday, January 27. A closing reception will be held on Saturday, February 6 from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. at the Gallery. Both the exhibit and reception are free and open to the public. ‘Not Serious’ features six artists interested in the complex and at times contradictory experiences of art and play. And by play, we mean literal rather than some kind of diffuse metaphorical sense of play.  This is going to be a fun, high-energy show. Featured artists include: Cecilia Iwata, George Larson, Paula Pinho Martins Nacif, Alexander DeGraaf/Pastel Fractal, Kaleigh Moynihan and Lane Preston. Gallery hours are Wednesday and Thursday from noon to 5 p.m., Friday from noon to 6 p.m., and Saturday from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. For additional information, call 708-748-2601 or visit www.unionstreetgallery.org.

Chicago Printmakers Collaborative Exhibit – Opens Friday, January 29

USG’s first floor is currently featuring an exhibit highlighting members of Chicago Printmakers Collaborative. The exhibit will open on Friday, January 29 and run through February 6. A reception for the show will be held on Friday, January 29 from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. at the Gallery. Both the exhibit and reception are free and open to the public. The Chicago Printmakers Collaborative exhibit features work from: Chris Blume, Matt Bodett, Gabriella Boros, Jeff Lassahn, Kim Laurel, Andrea Schumacher, Megan Sterling, and Deborah Maris Lader. Gallery hours are Wednesday and Thursday from noon to 5 p.m., Friday from noon to 6 p.m., and Saturday from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. For additional information, call 708-748-2601 or visit www.unionstreetgallery.org.

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

Chris Farrell & Dean Milano to Perform at Edgar’s Place Coffee House – Saturday, February 13

Edgar’s Place Coffee House will proudly present Chris Farrell and Dean Milan on Saturday, February 13 at 7:30 p.m. Edgar’s Place is located at the UUCC in Park Forest. For over 35 years, Chris Farrell has been a mainstay of Chicago’s famed singer-songwriter scene. Honing his writing and performing skills while sharing the stage with music legends Steve Goodman, John Prine, Bob Gibson and others, Chris has emerged with his own distinct brand of songwriting and showmanship to carry on this proud tradition. Dean Milan’s songs reflect his extensive background in music in multiple genres, and are sparkling compositions that range from humorous to introspective, solid melodic tunes that cover a wide-range of topics. Tickets are $15 per person. Edgar’s Place is a fundraiser for the UUCC. For additional information, visit www.uuccpf.org or call 708-481-5339.

Educational Lectures & Opportunities

DePaul University, 2250 North Shefield, Chicago

Catholic Scholar to Speak on Jesus’ African Impact – Thursday, January 28

The Rev. Laurenti Magesa, whose work has reshaped the study of Catholicism in Africa, will deliver an evening public lecture, “Naming Jesus As ‘Healer’ In Africa,” January 28 at DePaul University.The lecture will expand on the role Jesus plays for the people of sub-Saharan Africa. It will focus on how Jesus embodies the African worldview of ongoing healing and life’s flourishing through his life, teaching, death and resurrection. Magesa is a groundbreaking theologian and one of the first African scholars in his field to publish in English. He is the author of more than 100 academic articles and eight books, including “African Religion: The Moral Traditions of Abundant Life,” considered a breakthrough text in the field. Before Magesa, most scholarship on Catholicism in Africa had been written by Europeans. He was one of the first Anglophone African voices to emerge as an expert on Christianity, offering an insider perspective and encouraging fellow theologians to honor and dig deep into their own African culture and traditions. He will be a visiting scholar through May with the Center for World Catholicism & Intercultural Theology at DePaul, which is hosting the lecture. In 2014, DePaul recognized Magesa’s scholarship by bestowing an honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters degree, which was presented at commencement ceremonies in Kenya at Tangaza University College. The lecture begins at 6:30 p.m. on DePaul’s Lincoln Park Campus in the Student Center, Room 314B, 2250 N. Sheffield Ave. A reception precedes the lecture at 6 p.m. Additional information is available at http://go.depaul.edu/magesa or 773-325-4158.

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

Freshman Friday Program – Friday, January 29

The Freshman Friday Program will take place on January 29 from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Admission to a four-year university for highly qualified students has been streamlined at GSU with a program called Freshman Fridays. Attending the session, providing the appropriate documentation and meeting the qualifications enables graduating seniors to apply to GSU and receive an instant admissions decision on-the-spot. The future GSU students can meet with academic and financial aid advisors, take a tour of the university and see what residence hall life is like. To qualify for direct admissions on Freshman Fridays, graduating seniors must meet the following criteria: have an unweighted GPA of 3.0 on 4.0 scale, have a minimum composite ACT score of 20 with at least a 20 in the English and math components and provide their official high school transcripts and official ACT scores (scores may be posted on the official transcript). Additionally, GSU will waive the application fee for qualified applicants attending Freshman Fridays. For more information, visit www.govst.edu/freshmanfridays  or call 708-534-4490.

Roosevelt University, 430 South Michigan Avenue, Chicago

One Book One University Event to Feature David Axelrod – Thursday, February 4

David Axelrod will discuss his experiences navigating the U.S. political system, including his time as a strategist with President Barack Obama at 4:30 p.m. on Thursday, February 4 in Roosevelt University’s 10th floor Murray Green Library, 430 S. Michigan Ave., Chicago. A former Chicago Tribune journalist, campaign consultant and senior advisor to Obama, Axelrod will discuss and sign his new book, Believer: My Forty Years in Politics, during the One Book One University event that is sponsored by Roosevelt’s Mansfield Institute for Social Justice and Transformation. Axelrod’s autobiography, Believer: My Forty Years in Politics, has been called “a well-written and often moving account of how a committed liberal measures his principles against the bruising imperatives of high-stakes politics” by the New York Times and the Chicago Tribune has found some of its most compelling parts to be “inside views of Obama as he decides to run for U.S. Senate and during his subsequent two White House campaigns.” To obtain the book, visit Roosevelt University’s libraries, the Mansfield Institute office or www.amazon.com. The One Book One University event is free and open to the public. To register for this event, visit Axelrod Lecture Registration or for more information, contact Nancy Michaels at [email protected] or 312-341-2150. Media who are interested in attending should contact Laura Janota at [email protected] or 312-341-3511.

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

Information Session on Sports Careers – Registration Now in Progress

SSC’s Department of Continuing Education is presenting information sessions for those interested in developing their Leadership Skills, or Athletes interested in a career in the Coaching profession and Concussions in Sports Education. The sessions are led by Hall of Fame Football Player Michael Jennings and the schedule is as follows:

Lobby – Oak Forest Center
Monday, January 25, 2016 – Time: 4:30-5:30pm

Conference Room #5190 – Oak Forest Center
Monday, February 1, 2016 – Time: 4:30-5:30pm

SSC Athletics Facility
Monday, February 8, 2016 – Time: 4:30-5:30pm
Thursday, February 11, 2016 – Time: 4:30-5:30pm

Information Sessions are offered free of charge. For more information or to RSVP contact the South Suburban College Department of Continuing Education at 708-596-2000, ext. 2231.

3rd Annual Public Speaking Symposium – Thursday, January 28

The Chicagoland Speakers Network would like to help area residents and professionals meet their self-improvement goals in 2016 through a Public Speaking Symposium. The Chicagoland Speakers Network has planned this half-day of educational workshops on various topics related to effective professional speaking at South Suburban College’s Oak Forest Center on Thursday, January 28, 2016, from 9:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m. Public speaking is a highly valued and sought-after communication skill in all industries. Some people thrive in front of an audience and for others, it can cause apprehension. If your skills need tweaking and your confidence needs boosting, the Chicagoland Speakers Network would like to help. The 3rd Annual Public Speaking Symposium topics include:

  • Four Keys to Unlock Your Speaking Abilities, by Sabrina Schottenhamel.
  • What NOT to WEAR and What NOT to DO When Speaking, by Lori Klinka and Felicia Houston.
  • Before you Speak: Tips on Preparing for a Speech, by Mary Erlain.
  • Feedback: How to Ask for It, How to Give It, and What To Do With It, by Colleen Klimczak.
  • Panel Discussion Q & A, with the presenters.

Advanced registration is $39 through January 15th, or $49 from January 16th through the day of the Speaking Symposium. To register or for more information, copy and paste this address to your browser: https://csn-pss2016.eventbrite.com or contact event coordinator Takeisha Gary at [email protected]. The Oak Forest Center is located at 16333 S. Kilbourn, Oak Forest, Illinois.

Adult-Child Baseball Camps – Registration Now in Progress

SSC’s Baseball Program and Head Coach Steve Ruzich will be conducting Adult-Child Baseball Camps in February for boys and girls ages 6 thru 14. The camps will feature sessions for pitching, catching, hitting and fielding while providing adults and children the opportunity to improve their knowledge of baseball skills and techniques. Kids will be given expert instruction and time to practice and improve their skills through a variety of station drills. Adults will be taught how to use effective teaching methods, provide instruction using proper skill techniques, and utilize effective drills. The campers will work together, have fun, and develop talents in a wholesome, supportive environment. Ruzich has coached the SSC Baseball Program for the past 29 years with a winning record of 1045-607. Not only has he enjoyed success as a college coach and player, he has also established himself as a reputable youth baseball camp director around the state. In addition to Ruzich’s instruction, SSC baseball players will be on hand to help the campers develop and improve their skills. The players’ enthusiasm and expertise always adds to the camp’s success. The cost is $45 for one adult and one child per camp, and $40 per camp if enrolled in more than one. The cost is $30 for each additional child. The camp schedule is as follows:


  • Friday, February 12: 6:30 p.m. – 9:00 p.m.
  • Saturday, February 20: 9:00 a.m. – 11:30 a.m.


  • Saturday, February 13: 9:00 a.m. – 11:30 a.m.
  • Sunday, February 14: 12 noon – 2:30 p.m.
  • Sunday, February 21: 11:00 a.m. – 1:30 p.m.


  • Sunday, February 21: 2:00 p.m. – 4:30 p.m.


  • Sunday, February 14: 3:30 p.m. – 6:00 p.m.
  • Friday, February 19: 6:30 p.m. – 9:00 p.m.

Checks should be made payable to:

South Suburban College Baseball
15800 South State Street
South Holland, IL 60473

The camps are located at Bulldog Field on SSC’s Main Campus in South Holland. For more information or to register, contact Coach Ruzich at 708-225-5843, or email [email protected].

Concussion Seminars – Registration Now in Progress

SSC’s Department of Continuing Education is holding a seminar series on Concussions. This 2-day seminar is a must-attend event for coaches, parents, volunteers, trainers, student-athletes or others involved in sports. A concussion is not just a football related injury. It’s better to miss one game than miss a lifetime of fun. The seminars are led by Hall of Fame Football Player Michael Jennings and topics include:

  • Concussion Facts
  • Concussion Symptoms
  • Don’t hide it, Don’t ignore it, Report it!
  • Take Care Of Your Brain!

Class times are from 6:00-7:00 p.m. and run during February and March. The cost is $69. For more information contact the South Suburban College Department of Continuing Education at 708-596-2000, ext. 2231. The Oak Forest Center is located at 16333 S. Kilbourn.

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

Green Community Connections, 166 North Humphrey Avenue, Oak Park

Green Guides Kickoff – January 28 & February 2

The Green Guides program is being developed by PlanItGreen, and River Forest and Oak Park sustainability organizations in response to a need to share, at the neighborhood level, the many sustainability resources available to our communities.  Green Guides are not expected to be experts, just to have a willingness to connect neighbors to already existing opportunities and resources. Have you thought about energy efficiency but not known what you can do to get the biggest savings? Not sure what to do with an item that may or may not be recyclable? Seen those nice lawn signs celebrating your neighbors for having pesticide free lawns and wondered where you can get one? How can you find out if your house has leaks that can be fixed to reduce your water usage? Green Guides help to point their neighbors to the right place to find these answers and many more.  PlanItGreen will provide a quarterly newsletter, materials, resources, talking points, and more for Green Guides to use in getting the word out to your neighbors. Residents who wish to serve as a Green Guide choose the block(s) or building that you would like to cover.  You decide how best to connect to your neighbors (email, phone, in-person). Make a big impact with little effort! We will have kickoff events in late January and early February to formally introduce the program, provide resources, share ideas and get to know each other.  Please plan to attend one of the following events at the Oak Park Main Library, 834 Lake St., 2nd floor small meeting room.  10 a.m. Thursday, January 28 — OR — 7 p.m. Tuesday, February 2.  RSVP here to let us know you’re coming or that you want to be kept in the loop. Small changes can make a big impact when we act together! The Green Guides Network is part of the PlanItGreen sustainability initiative.  Organizers include Seven Generations Ahead, Green Community Connections, Interfaith Green Network and more.  RSVP below to let us know you’re coming or that you want to be kept in the loop. See you at the Kickoff Event for refreshments, idea-sharing and conversation! Learn more

One Earth Film Festival, Chicago

5th Annual One Earth Film Festival – Tickets Now on Sale

One Earth Film Festival returns for its fifth year, March 4-6, 2016, bringing you 35+ films and more than 40 screenings throughout the Chicagoland area. The festival continues its tradition of showcasing top-issue environmental films accompanied by engaging festival programming. See One Earth’s official film list along with trailers and descriptions and begin planning your weekend! Leading up to the big weekend, we start with our first pre-event screening: “This Changes Everything,” at 7 p.m. Thursday, February 11, at Dominican University. Filmed over 211 days in nine countries over four years and inspired by Naomi Klein’s international bestselling book, this film confronts the challenge of climate change head on. Get tickets for this pre-event screening today!

Advance Screenings — An Engaging Schedule of Pre-Event Screenings

As you gear up for the festival weekend, enjoy advance screenings throughout the month of February. Screenings are free! A $5 donation per film is appreciated. Seating is limited, so get your tickets now! Stay tuned to One Earth’s Guide for up-to-date information on all screening events. Currently, advance screenings are as follows:

Please see the Advance Screenings page for complete details.

For Families, Kids, and Teens — One Earth Brings Films & Programs for the Whole Family!

One Earth Film Festival 2016 has something for everyone, even the youngest environmentalists. General audiences, children, families, and teens are all welcome to attend our family programming. Parents are invited to view “Saving My Tomorrow” with their children. This film sparks rich conversation, with its collection of songs, activism and heartfelt tips for protecting the Earth for the children who will inherit it. See the trailer and get tickets here.

Discarded to Regarded — Reduce, Reuse and Recycle Through Art

How do we create treasure from trash? In February, artists and Oak Park arts organizations are working together to teach the public how to reduce, reuse and recycle through the visual mediums of art and film. Oak Park Art League (OPAL) is calling on artists for its gallery exhibition, Discarded to Regarded, for which artists submit one-of-a-kind works created from found objects or recycled materials. Artists can drop off work at Oak Park Art League starting Feb. 6. Read more about OPAL’s call for entries and gallery exhibition.

This year, One Earth Film Festival features two inspiring documentaries that tell moving trash-to-treasure stories. “Landfill Harmonic” shows how trash from a landfill in Paraguay is used to create something truly beautiful (watch the trailer below!). And Garbage Warrior tells the rich story of sustainable architect Michael Reynolds and his life’s work of building Earthships to turn garbage into sustainable homes.

For additional information, visit: www.oneearthfilmfestival.org.

Thorn Creek Nature Preserve, 247 Monee Road, Park Forest

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

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

American Cancer Association, Chicago

Relay For Life of the Far South Suburbs – Tuesday, January 26

Representatives from the American Cancer Association will hold a Kickoff Celebration for Relay For Life of the Far South Suburbs on Tuesday, Jan. 26, from 6 to 7:30 p.m., at the Richton Park Public Library located at 22310 Latonia Lane in Richton Park. At the event you can:

  • Find out more about Relay For Life
  • Form a Team or Join a Team
  • Take part in Survivor and Caregiver Activities

Relay For Life is a community event where teams and individuals camp out and take turns walking or running around a track or path. Each team has at least one participant on the track at all times and participates in fundraising that supports the American Cancer Society’s mission to save lives and finish the fight against cancer. Four million people participated in more than 6,100 events worldwide in 2015. For more information, or to RSVP for the kickoff, contact Heidi Gonzalez, Community Manager, at 708-633-7771 or email [email protected]. Learn more about Relay For Life!