Local, Park Forest

In and Around Park Forest Week of January 3, 2016 (Includes Podcast)

Lollapalooza Poster by Dan Grzeca

Lollapalooza Poster by Dan Grzeca

Park Forest, IL—(ENEWSPF)—January 3, 2016. Prairie State College’s Christopher Art Gallery will be hosting an exhibition of posters of music events from acclaimed Chicago area illustrators, designers and printers. ‘Gigs Graphics!’ will open on Monday, January 4 and run through January 28. Additional information about the exhibition 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, January 4

The Board of Trustees will meet on Monday, January 4 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) as well as.

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

Village Commissions & Advisory Boards

The following Park Forest Commissions are scheduled to meet the week of January 3:

  • Tuesday, January 5 at 7 p.m. – Plan Commission
  • Thursday, January 7 at 1 p.m. – Senior Citizens Advisory Commission
  • Thursday, January 7 at 7 p.m. – Environment Commission

The meetings 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

Opera Up Close ‘Seasons of Song’ – Tickets Now on Sale

The Center for Performing Arts will present Opera Up Close ‘Seasons of Song’ which will take place on Sunday, January 24 at 4 p.m. Spring flowers, the vibrant colors of fall, sultry summer night and romantic winter snowfall. The change of seasons has inspired composer for centuries. Explore the connection between music and nature, set against the spectrum of the four seasons. Tickets are $38. BUY TICKETS For additional information, visit: http://www.govst.edu/About/Center_for_Performing_Arts/All_Events_by_Date/ or call 708-235-2222.

Ain’t Misbehavin’ — Tickets Now on Sale

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.

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

‘Prospero’s Storm’ – Tickets Now on Sale

DePaul University’s Merle Reskin Theatre will present ‘Prospero’s Storm’ January 14 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’ – Tickets Now on Sale

The Sondra & Denis Healy Theatre at DePaul University will present ‘In the Blood.’ Previews will be held on January 20 and 21 with performance on January 22 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.

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 Area League of Women Voters

‘A Gift of Friendship’ Fund Raiser/Social Event – Thursday, January 7

The Park Forest Area League of Women Voters will be hosting its annual fund raiser/social event on Thursday, January 7 at 7 p.m. The event is titled this year ‘A Gift of Friendship.’ Festivities will take place at the Tall Grass Art Gallery at 367 Artists Walk in Park Forest. The Gallery will be decorated and featuring its holiday show. Complimentary Hors d’ oeuvres, soft drinks, wine and champagne will be served. A donation of $30 per person is requested. This is the major fund raiser for the Park Forest Area League, therefore, your attendance and participation is requested. One of the attractions of this event is the silent auction. Please contact Mary Dankowski at 708-283- 5607 or [email protected] for information. This is a fun event. The program is open to the public. For information visit lwvpfa.org

Park Forest Public Library, 400 Lakewood Boulevard

The following events are scheduled the week of January 3:

  • Monday, January 4 at 1 p.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 4 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.
  • Monday, January 4 at 6:30 p.m. – Family Movie Night ‘Pan’ — 12-year-old orphan Peter is spirited away to the magical world of Neverland, where he finds both fun and danger, and ultimately discovers his destiny — to become the hero who will be forever known as Peter Pan.
  • Tuesday, January 5 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 6 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 6 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 6 at 4 p.m. – Color Me Happy — 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.
  • Thursday, January 7 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 7 at 6 p.m. – Teen Advisory Board Meeting — We want YOU to join our new Teen Advisory Board (TAB) and help plan and design this new space for PF/OF teens. Ask for an application in patron services.
  • Friday, January 8 at 10:30 a.m. – Fiber Arts Circle — Meet and mingle with local fiber arts enthusiasts! Share stories, swap yarns, and more.
  • Friday, January 8 at 3 p.m. – Kids Coloring Circle — Our new circle is the perfect way to step back from a day at school and enjoy some relaxation! All supplies will be provided.
  • Saturday, January 9 at 2 p.m. — Join us for a celebration of Martin Luther King Jr’s life and his importance to the Civil Rights Movement and our society. We will have and exhibit and crafts on hand.
  • Sunday, January 10 at 2 p.m. – Scrabble Game Day — Join us for an all-ages day of Scrabble fun. Don’t miss the raffle!

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

Friends of the Library Meeting – Tuesday, January 5

The Friends of the Library will meet on Tuesday, January 5 at 7 p.m. at the Park Forest Public Library. Support our mission to open doors to a world of information, education, and recreation. The event is open to the public. For additional information, contact Barbara Osuch at 708-748-3731, extension 16 or email [email protected].

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

‘Gigs Graphics!’ Exhibition – Opens Monday, January 4

PSC is hosting ‘Gigs Graphics!’ an exhibition of posters of music events from acclaimed Chicago area illustrators, designers and printers from January 4 through 28, the Christopher Art Gallery located on the college’s main campus in Chicago Heights. An artists’ reception is being held in the gallery from 4:30 to 7 p.m., Thursday, January 21. 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. The college and gallery will be closed on Monday, January 18, in observance of Martin Luther King, Jr. Day. For more information about the exhibit or to make an appointment for a visit, call 708- 709-7738.

Tall Grass Art Association, 367 Artists Walk, Park Forest

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

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

Village of Park Forest Teen Zone, 350 Victory Drive

Martin Luther King Day of Service – Registration Required

Park Forest’s Teen Zone will join City Year Chicago for a day of service on Monday, January 18th as we adopt the ‘day on’ philosophy that Dr. King’s remembrance should be celebrated by a series of service projects. Last year volunteers performed a total of 33 service projects in Chicago’s Carson Elementary and Gage Park High School. Projects included; constructing benches, organizing school inventory, and hundreds of murals and quotes between three school buildings! This free event is open to those ages 12 through 18. Registration is required. Bus transportation will leave from the parking lot of Park Forest Village Hall, 350 Victory Drive at 8 a.m. and will return to Park Forest at approximately 5 p.m. For additional information or to register, please contact Adina McCollough, Teen Services Coordinator at 708-283-5663 or email [email protected].

Educational Lectures & Opportunities

Representative Tammy Duckworth, 1701 East Woodfield Road, Schaumburg

8th Congressional App Competition for High School Students – Submission Deadline January 15

Congresswoman Tammy Duckworth (IL-08) announced that Eighth District students can now enter the 2015 Congressional App Challenge (CAC) for a chance to have their work featured in the U.S. Capitol. The App Challenge was created in 2013 to help students around the nation develop skills in STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) fields by encouraging them to learn new skills and develop their own computer software. Additional information about the CAC and the submission process is available here. Students may enter their Congressional App Challenge individually or in teams of up to four students before the submission deadline of January 15, 2016. All submissions from the Eight District will be reviewed by a panel of local judges and winning submission will be highlighted on the U.S. House of Representatives’ website as well as featured in an exhibit in the U.S. Capitol building.

Representative Robin Kelly, 600 Holiday Plaza Drive, Matteson

2nd Congressional App Competition for High School Students – Submission Deadline January 15

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

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

Spring 2016 Semester Registration in Progress

Open Registration for the Spring 2016 Semester at SSC is currently in progress. Spring classes begin Tuesday, January 19, 2016. SSC will be closed for Holiday Break from December 24, 2015, through January 3, 2016. Regular business hours will resume on Monday, January 4, 2016.Payment arrangements are due daily at the end of each business day beginning Friday, December 18, 2015. Students who plan to use financial aid as payment for classes that start on January 19th must complete their FAFSA by January 8th. Completion of Financial Aid includes an official high school or GED transcript on file at SSC. Official transcripts must have a school seal and graduation date on them. Transcripts can be hand-delivered to the Admissions Office or mailed to: Office of Admissions (15800 South State Street, South Holland, IL 60473). If a transcript is hand-delivered it must be in the original sealed, unopened envelope. New students can submit an online application at www.ssc.edu. A current state issued ID is required to complete your enrollment process. New students will receive an SSC email account and a “My SSC” Username & Password via email which will allow access to the online schedule and class registration. The “MY SSC” portal also allows students 24-hour access during college closed periods. For more information about all of SSC’s programs, admissions and registration, please visit www.ssc.edu or contact the Admissions Office at 708-210-5718.

Paralegal Open House at Oak Forest Campus – January 12

SSC will be hosting an Open House for its Paralegal Program on Tuesday, January 12, 2016, from 6:00 p.m. – 7:30 p.m. in Room 5190 at the Oak Forest Center, 16333 South Kilbourn Avenue. Attendees will learn about an exciting career that is expected to grow 18% through 2020 according to the US Department of Labor. Information will be provided about SSC’s Paralegal/Legal Assistant curriculum, including the Associate Degree and certificate programs. In addition, former students from the program, working as paralegals, will be present to answer questions. The curriculum prepares students to work in a variety of legal environments including civil and criminal litigation, insurance, banking, public and governmental agencies, law offices and corporate legal departments. Emphasis is placed on the development of core skills in legal research and writing techniques including compilation and analysis of data, understanding legal vocabulary, law office technology, and preparation of legal documents. SSC has the only American Bar Association (ABA) approved paralegal program in the Chicago Southland region, giving graduates a huge advantage when entering the workforce. The college also requires that all of the instructors in the program are lawyers or judges to ensure the quality of instruction. While the majority of the paralegal classes are offered at the Oak Forest Center, some classes are offered online and some are offered at the Main Campus in South Holland. For more information, please contact Mr. Cieslik at 708-596-2000, ext. 2579 or email [email protected].

3rd Annual Public Speaking Symposium – 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.

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.

Village of Park Forest Careers in Focus, 350 Victory Drive

Teen-centered Event on Healthcare Careers – Registration Required

The Village of Park Forest Careers in Focus will host a teen-centered event on January 23 from 2 p.m. to 6 p.m. at the Prairie State College Conference Center, 202 South Halsted Street in Chicago Heights. The event is free and open to teens ages 13-19 and their parents. There will be a separate parent track at the event. Snacks will be provided. Careers in Focus is a teen-centered event featuring industry professionals and hands-on experiences. Network with professionals in the field, explore college programs connected to the career you want, and discover programs and opportunities you can access now to start your path toward your passions. Teens will have the opportunity to visit at least two of four labs. Labs include Nursing, EMT & First Responders, Surgical Technology and Dental Hygiene. Throughout the day there will be opportunities to participate in Yoga, Zumba, Line Dancing, Karate, cooking demos, and medical drawing. Active clothing is recommended (gym shoes and comfortable clothing).


2:00 – 2:30 p.m. — Doors Open/Check-in/Register

2:00 – 3:00 p.m. — Expo Space (Yoga, Zumba, Line Dancing, Karate, Medical Drawing & More!)

3:00 – 3:30 p.m. — Hands-on Workshop: Session 1 (Attend 1 of 4 labs)

Nursing • EMT & First Responders • Surgical Technology • Dental Hygiene

4:00 – 4:30 p.m. — Hands-on Workshop: Session 2 (Attend 1 of 4 labs)

Nursing • EMT & First Responders • Surgical Technology • Dental Hygiene

3:00 – 4:00 p.m. — Expo Space (Yoga, Zumba, Line Dancing, Karate, Medical Drawing & More!)

4:00 – 5:00 p.m. — Healthy Eating Demo/Snacks (Provided) – Camille Wright

5:00 – 6:00 p.m. — Professional Panel Discussions

Lab descriptions


The Nursing Program is a rigorous academic and professional education program preparing men and women for careers in nursing. As a graduate of the program, you will function as a practitioner of nursing in a variety of health care settings, providing and managing direct care through well-defined nursing practices. Our graduates have been praised as being caring, competent and dedicated to their profession.

EMT & First Responders:

The EMT program provides students with the knowledge and skill needed to handle the critically ill and injured in a pre-hospital care environment. Areas covered include cardiac arrests, fractures, injuries, and childbirth. Students are prepared for the certification exam, which requires them to be at least 18 years of age.

Surgical Technology:

This program prepares students to work as surgical technologists in the operating room, labor and delivery, ambulatory surgical care centers, cardiac catheterization laboratories, physician’s offices or central supply units. Surgical technologists work under medical supervision to facilitate safe and effective performance of invasive surgical procedures aimed at optimizing patient safety.

Dental Hygiene:

This program prepares students to work as surgical technologists in the operating room, labor and delivery, ambulatory surgical care centers, cardiac catheterization laboratories, physician’s offices or central supply units. Surgical technologists work under medical supervision to facilitate safe and effective performance of invasive surgical procedures aimed at optimizing patient safety.

Parents: Sessions on financial aid and college admission tips will be offered during the fair at 1 p.m. and 2:30 p.m.

Registration is required. For additional information or to register, please contact Adina McCollough at 708-701-3841 or email [email protected].

Green Events

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

St. Irenaeus Church, 78 Cherry Street, Park Forest

A Faith Response to Homicide: Vigil for Peace – Wednesday, January 6

The distant echo of gun fire has roared its thunderous blast in our community. The weeping of Rachel for her children is now our weeping. As an expression of solidarity and peace-seeking, the faith communities of Park Forest are gathering to pray for peace in our village, our nation and our world. The event will take place at St. Irenaeus Church on Wednesday, January 6, at 7 p.m. for a vigil, and as an ongoing commitment, the first Wednesday of each month to join our hearts, our hands, and our voices for peace. See you there!