In and Around Park Forest Week of June 8, 2009


The Western Ave. entryway to the DownTown and CVS Pharmacy.  (Photo: Wendy Heise)

Park Forest, IL–(ENEWSPF)–June 8, 2009. Thanks to everyone who has been providing event information and for all the positive feedback we are receiving about this column. If your club, church, organization or local business will be holding activities or events in our community during the upcoming week or if you would like to announce personal events, please send an e-mail to Rosemary Piser, Associate Editor, with the details. Submission deadline is noon on Friday of each week.

Public Hearing on Village of Park Forest 2009/2010 Proposed Budget – June 8

Mayor John Ostenburg and the Village Board of Trustees conducted an overview of the proposed 2009/2010 budget at this past Monday’s Board meeting.

A public hearing on the 2009/2010 budget will be held at the June 8 Regular Board Meeting. Citizens of Park Forest are encouraged to attend this public hearing to submit comments regarding the budget. The final step in the Village’s lengthy budget process is for the document to be approved by ordinance on Monday June 22.

Copies of the draft budget are available in the Manager’s Office of Village Hall and at the Park Forest Public Library. Contact Deputy Village Manager/Finance Director Mary Dankowski (708-748-5607) or Village Manager Tom Mick (708-748-1129) with questions regarding the 2009/2019 budget or the Village’s budget preparation process.

Career Opportunities in the Village of Park Forest

The Village of Park Forest is currently seeking applicants for the full-time positions of Engineering Technician and Maintenance Worker within the Department of Public Works. The Village is also seeking applicants for the part-time position of Office Assistant for the Fire Department. For more information on these opportunities, please visit the Village web site at www.villageofparkforest.com and click on the “employment” link.

Village of Park Forest Commissions & Advisory Groups

The following Park Forest Commissions/Advisory Groups will meet this week:

Commission on Human Relations – Tuesday, June 9 at 7:30 p.m.

Youth Commission – Tuesday, June 9 at 7:00 p.m.

All Commission and Advisory Group meetings are held at Village Hall, 350 Victory Center. Residents are encouraged to attend.

Greening of Park Forest

Summer Energy Workshop – Wednesday June 10

CNT Energy in conjunction with the Village of Park Forest and the Park Forest Environment Commission will be conducting a summer energy workshop to help you manage your summer energy electricity costs. The workshop will be held on Wednesday, June 10 from 7:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. in the Village Hall Board Room. Refreshments will be served and a compact fluorescent light bulb will be given to each family while supplies last. To sign-up for the workshop, call CNT Energy at 773-279-4037 or email [email protected]. Registration by email should include your name and phone number.

Recycle Used Cell Phones and Cell Phone Accessories

The Rotary Club of Park Forest is conducting a used cell phone and accessory collection drive to benefit the families and programs of the South Suburban Family Shelter. Donated items can be placed in the collection box located in the lobby of Village Hall. For more information, call Denyse Carreras at 708-283-5603.

Book Recycling and Document Destruction Event

On Friday, Saturday, and Sunday, June 12, 13 and 14 from 9:00 a.m. to 4:30 pm., the Will County Land Use Department is sponsoring a Book Recycling and Document Destruction Event at Joliet Park District’s Pilcher Park Nature Center, 2501 Highland Park Drive, Joliet, IL. For more information, call the Will County Land Use Department at 815-727-8834 or visit their web site at www.willcountylanduse.com.

Order Your Rain Barrel at Village Hall

The Park Forest Environment Commission and the Park Forest Recreation and Parks Department are facilitating the sale of rain barrels for $49 each. Residents interested in buying rain barrels can visit the Recreation and Parks window on the main floor of Village Hall, 350 Victory Drive, to order a barrel in the color of their choice (terra cotta, gray, black or blue) and pick them up at the Farmers’ Market on Saturday, July 11th, August 1st or September 5th. You can also purchase a rain barrel at the Farmers’ Market with colors limited to the stock-on hand. Common rain barrel accessories will also be available for sale at the Farmers’ Market. Payment can be made in either cash or personal check. For further information, call Village Hall at 708-748-2005.

Go Green with a Free Tote Bag

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

Park Forest Community Development

This week, 178 inspections were performed. These included new construction, re-occupancy, inspector-initiated and referral/complaint. In the month of May, a total of 74 building permits were issued for a total new construction cost valuation of $969,889 with $11,895 collected in fees. In Civil Court action on property maintenance code enforcement matters, the Thorncreek cases were up for status hearings.

Park Forest Economic Development

Community Ambassadors

The Commission on Human Relations is looking for Park Forest residents who are interested in being Community Ambassadors. Park Forest Ambassadors will assist with promoting the Village to prospective new residents and visitors. Interested residents can find out more about the program by visiting the Village’s web site or calling or e-mailing Evelyn Sterling 708-283-5621, [email protected]. The deadline to apply is June 15.

Homebuyers Workshop

The Village of Park Forest and the South Suburban Housing Center are co-sponsoring a Homebuyers Workshop on Wednesday, June 17 from 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. at Village Hall. The workshop will provide information about the federal government’s $8,000 tax credit for first time homebuyers. In addition, mortgage lenders and bankers, attorneys, insurance agents, credit counselors and others will be in attendance to answer questions. For more information and to pre-register, contact Evelyn Sterling 708-283-5621, or e-mail [email protected].

Village of Park Forest Fourth of July Parade

Applications are now being taken on the Village web site for those businesses or organizations who want to be part of the Fourth of July parade in Park Forest.

Park Forest Fire Department


The department responded to 61 calls for assistance this past week including 7 double and 2 triple calls. Mutual aid assistance was provided once each to the Richton Park and South Chicago Heights fire departments. Automatic aid assistance was provided once each to Matteson and University Park and received four times from Matteson.

Babysitter/Latchkey Class

The summer session of the Babysitter/Latchkey training class will be held at the Park Forest Library from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Monday through Friday, July 20-24. To register, contact the Park Forest Recreation and Parks Department at 708-748-2005.

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

School and “Sports Only” Physicals

Children of Park Forest and the surrounding area who are going into preschool, kindergarten, sixth grade and ninth grades are required to have a school physical. The June and July physicals are compliments of the Friends of the Park Forest Health Department. Current non-HMO Medicaid recipients must show their card. The next date for physicals is:

Saturday, June 27, from 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. Appointments are required. To make an appointment or for further information, call 708-748-1118.

Park Forest Public Works

Concrete Work

The Village’s concrete contractor, Davis Concrete, has completed concrete work around the Village and has started the asphalt and lawn restorations.

Street Lighting

H & H Electric, the Illinois Department of Transportation street lighting contractor, has completed the work as far as they can on Indianwood Boulevard street light project between Blackhawk Drive and Orchard Drive. They provided temporary service to the poles and are waiting for ComEd to connect to a permanent power service.

Landscape Restoration

Dawn Companies has completed the landscape restoration in the Autumn Ridge and Forest Brook areas from the 2007 watermain improvement job.

Field Operations

Paul Husband, Jimmy Apps and Jerry Conley attended a class on Tuesday, June 2 at Ziebell Water Products in Orland Park. The class covered hydro-stops, hydrant and valve maintenance and watermain tapping.

Watermain restorations are moving along at a rapid pace. The matting being used this year has proved to be reliable and easier to install than sod. A pine tree was planted at 409 Huron as part of watermain restoration. Street lights were relamped. The street name and traffic signs on Indianwood Boulevard were removed from the wood poles and reinstalled on new light poles. Sanitary sewers were cleaned and potholes were patched. The new doors on the old Public Work’s garage and the doors on the new garage were painted.

Water Plant

Last week, staff concentrated on transferring accumulated lime residuals from the filtrate tank to the sludge holding tank. Lawn maintenance around the Water Plant continues. The 2009 annual Water Quality report has been sent to the printer.

Park Forest Recreation and Parks


Mowing is still an issue at some locations, although the staff is close to being caught up. Helen Neel and others have been very busy planting and moving out the planters in and around the DownTown area. They also continue the planting of a variety of beds throughout the Village.

Park Forest Bark District

Much progress was made in the last two weeks at the Park Forest Bark District. The fencing was installed last week as well as the entry area to the park surfaced with screenings. Elizabeth Schell and Hilliard Sanders of the parks staff also installed the new sign that they fabricated earlier. The waterline and water fountain were scheduled for installation last week. Remaining projects include the wood chip path from Wildwood Drive to the entrance and placement of furniture such as benches, tables and trash receptacles. A number of dog owners have been in to register in the last two weeks.

Opening day is scheduled for Saturday, June 27 from 1 to 4 p.m.

Human Interest

Donate to Troops Serving Abroad

The Village of Park Forest is currently seeking the names and addresses of local military personnel currently serving overseas so that they may receive packaged donations from Park Forest residents. If you are a Park Forest resident and have a family member from your household currently deployed or if you have recently returned from a tour of duty, please call Judi Lancaster at 708-283-5608 or stop by the Manager’s Office at Village Hall, 350 Victory Drive.

Shop Park Forest First!

Park Forest Business Resource Guide

The 2009/2010 Business Resource Guide will be mailed to all residents this week. Residents are encouraged to use the Guide as their first resource when looking for goods and services as it lists all registered businesses in Park Forest.

Park Forest Farmers’ Market

The 36th Annual Park Forest Farmers’ Market will be held on Saturday’s from 7:00 a.m. to Noon through the end of October. Vendors from across Illinois, Indiana, and Michigan will have a tremendous array of fruits, vegetables, plants, flowers, breads, cheese, organic eggs and meat, and the “best pork chop sandwiches in the universe.” Come early and enjoy a breakfast burrito and cup of coffee while you shop the Market. The Market is located in the parking lot of the Eagle Movie Theater at the corner of Lakewood Boulevard and Cunningham Drive in DownTown Park Forest.

Arts and Entertainment

Rich East High School, 300 Sauk Trail

“Can’t You Hear the Music” Presented by Field Crest School of Performing Arts

This original musical written by Carl Easter and directed by Santella Napue will be performed on Friday, June 12 at 7:00 p.m. and Saturday, June 13 at 2:00 p.m. at Rich East High School. This hilarious musical, featuring the Field Crest students, is a fun and exciting blend of dance, drama, and song. For ticket information call, 708-679-6168.

Center for Performing Arts at Governors State University

Cinderella – Tickets on Sale Now

Cinderella will be performed on Thursday, July 23 at 11 a.m. Summer camp groups, families and individuals are welcome. This performance provides an ideal field trip experience. Tickets are only $7 each for groups of 20 or more and $9 each for individuals. For more information or to purchase tickets, call The Center box office at 708-235-2222 or visit www.centertickets.net.

Illinois Theatre Center, 371 Artists Way

Project S.A.M. (Summer Arts Marathon)

Children ages 6-12 who would like to explore the opportunity in music, art, dance, drama, and creative writing can attend Project S.A.M. being held June 15 through July 24 from 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. The project culminates in an art exhibit, performing arts concert and publication of a creative writing magazine. This event will only be held on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday. Tuition is $125. For more information, call 708-481-3510.

Park Forest Library, 400 Lakewood Boulevard

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

Monday, June 8 at 7:00 p.m. – Summer Reading WILD Kick Off. Welcome children’s book illustrator Patrick Garboard.

Tuesday, June 9 at 8:00 a.m. – Tuesday Morning Walkers. Meet in the north parking lot.

Tuesday, June 9 at 3:00 p.m. – WILD Wii/Movie Day. Meet at the library for an afternoon of fun for children.

Wednesday, June 10 at 10:30 a.m. – Lap Sit Story Times. For children 3 and under.

Wednesday, June 10 at 11:45 a.m. – Toddler Art. For children ages 2 – 4.

Wednesday, June 10 at 2:00 p.m. – Sit-upon Making. The library hosts a special craft project for children. Registration is required.

Thursday, June 11 at 10:30 a.m. – Very Grand Animal Rhythm Band. The library hosts a special music project for children.

Saturday, June 13, at 11:00 a.m. – Pet Adoption Day. The South Suburban Humane Society will have pets available to adopt.

Saturday, June 13, at 12:30 p.m. – Canine Demonstration. The Park Forest Police Department will give a police canine demonstration.

For more information on these events, call 708-748-3731.

Adult Summer Reading

Summer reading isn’t just for kids. Adults may sign up for their own summer reading program starting June 8 at the Park Forest Library. The program is easy: sign up, read books, get prizes. Books do not have to be library books, and audio books count, too. Prizes are awarded for reading 4, 8 and 12 books. Adult Summer Reading ends on July 31st.

Park Forest House Museum, 141 Forest Boulevard (Corner of Forest & Fir)

Relive your childhood memories or show your children/grandchildren what it was like to live in the ‘good old days’ by visiting the Park Forest House Museum. The Museum is open on Saturdays from 1:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m. Admission is $5 for adults; children 12 and under are free when accompanied by an adult. Group tours are by appointment. Call 708-748-3731.

Tall Grass Gallery, 367 Artists Walk, Park Forest

Landmarks: Restoration & Regeneration Through June 27

This exhibit shows close and distant views of the Earth’s natural process and formations. These inspired new works in encaustic, fiber and mixed media were created by Nikkole Huss, Heather Page and curated by Claudia Craemer. This exhibit continues through June 27th, Tuesday – Saturday, 11: 00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.

Educational Lectures

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

Alternative Teacher Certification Information Session

Learn how to earn elementary teacher certification while receiving a salary and securing a teaching position through GSU’s Alternative Certification Program. The first information session will be held on Wednesday, June 10 at 7 p.m. in GSU’s Hall of Honors. The Alternative Teacher Certification is open to college graduates with five years work experience after receiving a bachelor’s degree. For more information, call 708-534-4399.

This and That

Camping in GSU’s Sculpture Park – Registration by June 12

Children and their parents can sleep under the stars under one of the monumental sculptures of the Nathan Manilow Sculpture Park at Governors State University, 1 University Parkway. The overnight camping experience begins on Saturday, June 20 at 4:30 p.m. when campers meet to pitch their tents and concludes after breakfast on Sunday morning at 7:30 a.m. Campers will enjoy pizza, stories around the campfire, tours of the park, swimming in the GSU pool, and breakfast overlooking the lake. Participants need to supply their own tent, sleeping bags, and flashlights. All children between the ages of eight and fifteen must be accompanied by a parent or adult guardian. All participants must sign a waiver of liability. To register, call 708-534-4486 or email [email protected].

Hope Lutheran Church, 424 Indianwood Blvd.

GEM’S Mom’s Group

On Wednesday, June 10 from 6:00 p.m. to 7:45 p.m., the GEM’S Mom’s group will share a meal, discuss relevant topics and listen to various speakers. Children are allowed and will engage in various activities and crafts; tutoring is also available. For more information, call 708-748-1995.

Thorn Creek Nature Center, 247 Monee Rd.

Peaceful Rhythms

On Saturday, June 13 from 12 noon to 5 p.m., join local musicians for a toe-tapping and foot stomping afternoon beneath the oak trees at Thorn Creek Nature Center. Besides music, there will be children’s activities, local vendors, and a silent auction. Call 708-747-6320 for ticket information.

Village of Park Forest Commission on Human Relations

Good Egg Award

Do you know someone who went beyond the call of duty? The Commission on Human Relations is looking to honor an individual or individuals who have made an impact in race relations, good neighborliness, human relations, and/or is a proponent of diversity in the South Suburbs. Nomination forms are to be submitted by August 3. Nomination forms can be found on the Village of Park Forest web site (www.villageofparkforest.com), or by emailing Evelyn Sterling at [email protected], or calling 708-283-5621.

Calvary United Protestant Church, 425 N. Orchard St.

Vacation Bible School

On June 15 – 19 from 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m., children K-6th are invited to join in singing, studying, playing and refreshments. Call the church office at 708-748-6261 to register.

Sources: Village of Park Forest Weekly Manager’s Report; Spring/Summer 2009 Calendar of Events, Park Forest Library, Governors State University, Center for Performing Arts, and Park Forest Historical Society web sites.