In and Around Park Forest Week of November 29, 2010

Lt. Mike Wheeler honors students
Lt. Mike Wheeler honors Principal Bessie Emerson Boyd and students from Blackhawk School at last Monday’s board meeting. (Photo: Gary Kopycinski)

Park Forest, IL—(ENEWSPF)—November 29, 2010. Plan on joining your neighbor’s at Park Forest’s Holiday Tree Lighting which will take place on Friday, December 3rd.  Details about the event, which is sponsored by the Village of Park Forest and the Park Forest Library, can be found in the “Holiday Gift Ideas & Events” Section below.

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 Meetings

Park Forest Commissions & Advisory Boards

The following Village Commissions and Boards will meet this week:

  • Senior Citizens Advisory Group – Thursday, December 2 at 1 p.m.
  • Environment Commission – Thursday, December 2 at 7 p.m.

All meetings are held at Village Hall, 350 Victory Drive. Residents are encouraged to attend.

Holiday Gift Ideas & Events

Shop Amazon.com Through eNews Park Forest

If you’re shopping at Amazon.com this holiday season, please shop at the eNews Park Forest Amazon.com Store! Planning to give a gift card? ENEWSPF can help with that too!

Park Forest Holiday Tree Lighting – Friday, December 3

The holiday season officially kicks-off in Park Forest on Friday, December 3rd with the Holiday Tree Lighting. Crafts, music and refreshments for the kids will take place from 5 p.m. to 6 p.m. at Dining on the Green, 149 Main Street. At 6 p.m., the Holiday Tree Lighting with Santa will take place in DownTown Park Forest on the corner of Main Street and Cunningham Drive. Bring the entire family to this free event which is sponsored by the Village of Park Forest and the Park Forest Library.

Freedom Hall Nathan Manilow Theatre, 410 Lakewood Blvd., Park Forest

Peter Mayer’s “Stars and Promises” – Saturday, December 4

On Saturday, December 4 at 8 p.m., the 10th anniversary of Peter Mayer’s annual celebration of Christmas, “Stars and Promises,” will take place. In 1999 Peter, singer/songwriter, and the lead guitarist for Jimmy Buffett’s Coral Reefer Band, and his brother, Jim Mayer, took carols such as “What Child is This,” “Joy to the World,” and “Little Drummer Boy,” and original compositions such as “Sing Joy” and “This Christmas” and placed them in musical settings that traced their upbringing and musical influences from a childhood in India to their journeys into jazz, rock, folk, and classical directions. The show will feature musical highlights from years past and new. Tickets are $28. For additional information or to purchase tickets, call 708-503-7737 or visit www.freedomhall.org to order tickets online.

Celebration Ministries, 424 Indianwood Blvd., Park Forest

A Night in Bethlehem – Sunday, December 5

On Sunday, December 5 from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m., journey back to Bethlehem and witness firsthand what it may have been like for the newborn Savior and his family. Live nativity, hands-on experiences, food, family photos, and more. Suggested donation is $10 per family. For more information, call Celebration Ministries at 708-748-1995.

Center For Performing Arts at GSU, 1 University Parkway, University Park

Annual Holiday Production of The Nutcracker – Tickets Now on Sale

On Saturday, December 11 at 1 p.m. and 5 p.m., the Salt Creek Ballet along with the Chicago Youth Symphony Orchestra will perform The Nutcracker. There will be special holiday concessions and photos with Santa.  Tickets start at $25 for adults and $20 for those 16 and under. For additional information or to purchase tickets, call the Center box office at 708-235-2222 or visit www.centertickets.net.

“The Fantastic Toyshop” – Tickets Now on Sale

On Saturday, December 18 at 3 p.m., celebrate the holiday season and the joy of giving with the story of a struggling toy shop owner who helps a mysterious customer find the perfect toy. Tickets start at $10.50. For additional information or to purchase tickets, call the Center box office at 708-235-2222 or visit www.centertickets.net.

Garden Club of Park Forest

“A Gardener’s Cookbook”

To celebrate their 55th anniversary, the Park Forest Garden Club offers this cookbook filled with memories, gardening tips, flowery sayings and of course recipes. Makes a great gift. All proceeds go to the club and are used toward community contributions. Cookbooks are $9 and are available at the Park Forest Recreation and Parks Department, 350 Victory Drive. Call 708-748-2005 for additional information.

Illinois Philharmonic Orchestra, 377 Artists Walk, Park Forest

Harris Holiday Concert – Tickets Now on Sale

On Saturday, December 18 at 3 p.m., bring family and friends to the Illinois Philharmonic Orchestra’s annual crowd pleaser – an event for all ages. The concert will be held at Lincoln-Way East Performing Arts Center, 201 Colorado Ave., Frankfort, IL. Hubert the Lion will greet you before the concert, and then get into the spirit of the season in style and song. In addition to perennial favorite holiday tunes, sing-alongs and magical moments for orchestra and chorus, new this season, the Illinois Philharmonic Orchestra brings you Scrooge!, a musical version of the classic Charles Dickens tale. Tickets are priced at $30 and $40 and are selling quickly. For additional information or to purchase tickets, visit the Illinois Philharmonic Orchestra’s website at: http://ipomusic.org/ or call 708-481-7774.

Marian Catholic High School, 700 Ashland Ave., Chicago Heights

8th Annual Holiday Madrigal Dinner – Tickets Now on Sale

On Friday, December 10 and Saturday, December 11 at 6:30 p.m. each evening, the Marian Catholic Fine Arts Department will present its 8th Annual Holiday Madrigal Dinner in the Marian Band Room. The evening will feature beautiful music, moving storytelling, court entertainers and delicious food and drink. Tickets are $25 and include a full dinner and copy of the Madrigal Singers CD. Doors will open at 6 p.m. Because of high demand and limited seating, all ticket orders must be paid in full in advance of the event. For additional information or to purchase tickets, call Michelle Howisen at 708-756-9442.

Park Forest Historical Society (PFHS)

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

The 1950s Park Forest House Museum will have Thanksgiving decorations on display through November.
Advance tickets are now on sale for the December exhibit, “Step Back into a 1950s Christmas,” open Saturdays December 4, 11, and 18. Tickets are $3.00 for adults; children 12 and under are free with a paying adult. Tickets can be purchased from PFHS Board Members which are listed in the Historical Society section of eNews Park Forest.

The Museum is open on Saturdays from 1:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m. Group tours are by appointment. Call 708-481-4252.

America’s Original GI Town: Park Forest, Illinois (Creating the North American Landscape) – Now on Sale

Signed copies of “America’s Original GI Town,” 2nd edition, by Gregory Randall, are for sale at the 1950s Park Forest House Museum, Saturdays from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. for $25 per copy. A portion of the book sales will benefit the PFHS.

Park Forest Library, 400 Lakewood Boulevard, Park Forest

Holiday Sale – Now in Progress

The Park Forest’s Library’s annual holiday sale is now is progress. Items available include bags of pecans for $9; calendars for $6; Friends of the Library Mugs for $6; Pecans & Calendar for $14; Pecans & Mug for $14; and Mug & Calendar for $11. Buy now for a great holiday gift. See Patron Services for a full selection of pecans.

Rich Township Transportation

Free Bus Tour of Holiday Lights – Make Reservation by December 10

The Rich Township Transportation Department will be offering a free bus tour to view Christmas decorations in the area on Friday, December 17. The trip is for Township senior citizens and residents with disabilities. Before the tour, Township Highway Commissioner Calvin Jordan will host a holiday reception for the participants starting at 4 p.m. Reservations must be made by Friday, December 10. For additional information or to make a reservation, call 708-748-6727.

Rotary Club of Park Forest

29th Annual Poinsettia Sale Fundraiser

This fundraiser began as a unique effort to meet personal and professional holiday season decorating needs.  At the time of it’s inception, no other club was selling poinsettias and delivered them at no additional cost!  Twenty-eight years later we still offer beautiful, affordable plants personally delivered by our dedicated Rotarians at no extra cost!  For church deliveries we can accommodate delivery to coincide with your church’s holiday decorating timeframe.  All profits go directly to fund the club’s local service projects that benefit the youth and elderly and to Rotary International’s efforts to eradicate polio worldwide.

Orders may be faxed, mailed or called in.   ORDER FORM

For additional information, contact Denyse Carreras at: [email protected]

Golden Opportunities

Are you looking for a unique gift for a friend, family member or co-worker? Golden Opportunities is the only coupon book that offers coupons at favorite LOCAL restaurants, movies, groceries, sporting events and much more! Coupons are valid once a month and a single coupon can offer you hundreds of dollars in savings. Customers can receive 50% off and 2 for 1 discounts. Golden Opportunity Books are $25. Proceeds from the sales support the Rotary Club of Park Forest’s Early Act™ program – a school-wide service club for elementary students from ages 5 to 13. The Rotary Club of Park Forest sponsors two clubs at Forest Trail Junior High School in Park Forest. Books can be purchased by calling Jerome Brown at 773-41601441 or by e-mail at [email protected].

Salon Artists Gallery, 294 Main St., Park Forest

20th Annual Holiday Arts Sale – Through December 22

Salon Artists Gallery’s 20th Annual Holiday Arts Sale is now in progress and will continue through Wednesday, December 22. Original one-of-a kind artwork that will make unique gifts, will be available at affordable prices. Jewelry will be 10% off and paintings 20% off. Project Share Food Pantry donations are welcome. Gallery hours are Tues and Thursday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., Wednesday and Friday from Noon to 7 p.m., Saturday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and Sunday from Noon to 4 p.m. For additional information, call 708-833-5108 or 708-748-3946

Tall Grass Arts Association, 267 Artists Walk, Park Forest

Mini-Gallery/Gift Shop

Why not give a gift for the holidays that is unique, handcrafted and exceptionally high quality? The annual holiday show of gallery artists will feature smaller, more affordable art, perfect for gift-giving such as hand blown glass, stained glass and origami ornaments, jewelry, scarves, pens, prints, paintings, cards, boxes, ceramic casseroles, mugs and much more. Gallery hours are 11 a.m. through 4 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday. For additional information, call 708-748-3377 or visit www.tallgrassarts.org.

Thorn Creek Audubon Society (TCAS), Park Forest

‘Natural’ Christmas Gift Ideas

For Christmas ideas that give back to nature, TCAS offers a variety of cards that can be sent for the holidays or may also be used for small gifts. Holiday cards featuring birds such as geese and cardinals are available at $4 for a packet of six, including envelopes. Other cards feature six different flowers of nearby Raccoon Grove, taken by former TCAS member Warren Buck. New this year is a set of cards with pictures of Japanese flower arrangements, Ikebana, done by TCAS member Charles Habecker. Birdhouses for Eastern Bluebirds and one for House Wrens at $15 each are also available. All can be purchased at the TCAS December 1 meeting at the Wetlands Discovery Center at the Park Forest Aqua Center, 30 N. Orchard Dr., or by calling Aura Duke at 708-748-6407.

Trinity Lutheran Church, 2901 Western Ave., Park Forest

Advent Concert & Dinner – Sunday, December 5

On Sunday, December 5 at 4 p.m., begin the season of preparation for the birth of Jesus by joining us at Trinity for a concert performed by Trinity musicians. Then head to Good Shepherd Hall for a potluck dinner and great conversation. For additional information, call Reverend Linda Johnson Seyenkulo at 708-747-8388 or visit www.trinityparkforest.org.

Union Street Gallery, 1527 Otto Blvd., Chicago Heights

“Twelfth Month” – Opens Wednesday, December 1

Union Street Gallery’s Annual Holiday Exhibit and Sale, “Twelfth Month” opens to the public on Wednesday, December 1 at noon. An opening reception will be held on Saturday, December 11 from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Come and experience the exhibit with family and friends, shop the boutiques and find unique, affordable holiday gifts made by local artists. While at Union Street, enjoy free hot chocolate, coffee, and snacks. For additional information or gallery hours, call 708-754-2601 or visit www.unionstreetgallery.org.

Arts & Entertainment

Park Forest Library, 400 Lakewood Boulevard, Park Forest

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

  • Monday, November 29 at 10:30 a.m. – Storytime for children ages 2 and older
  • Monday, November 29 at 3:30 p.m. – Free Homework Helpers
  • Tuesday, November 30 at 3:30 p.m. – Free Homework Helpers
  • Tuesday, November 30 at 7 p.m. – PJ Storytime for children of all ages
  • Wednesday, December 1 at 10:15 a.m. – Lap Sit Story Times for those ages 3 and under
  • Wednesday, December 1 at 11 a.m. – Toddler Art for those ages 2 to 4
  • Thursday, December 2 at 10:15 a.m. – Discovery Time for those ages 3 to 5
  • Thursday, December 2 at 3:30 p.m. – Free Homework Helpers
  • Saturday, December 4 at 2 p.m. – Drop-In Stories & Crafts

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

Potpourri of Lectures – Thursday, December 2

The fall Potpourri of Lectures series resumes on Thursday, December 2 at 10:30 a.m. with a lecture entitled “The Dark Energy Survey” by Richard Kron, Professor of Physics and Astrophysics at the University of Chicago. The lecture will be held at Park Forest Village Hall, 350 Victory Drive. Light refreshments will be served. For additional information, call Mary VanSwaol at the Park Forest Library at 708-748-3731, extension 24.

Library Hours Friday, December 3

The Park Forest Library will be open on Friday, December 3 from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m.

Illinois Theatre Center, 371 Artists Walk, Park Forest

 “The Apple Tree” – Opens Friday, December 3

Tickets are now on sale for “The Apple Tree,” a delightful musical comedy that consists of three one-act musicals based on stories by Mark Twain, Frank R. Stockton, and Jules Feiffer. The songs are by Jerry Bock and Sheldon Harnick (Fiddler on the Roof). The play will open on Friday, December 3 and run through Sunday, December 19. Performances are Wednesdays through Saturdays at 8 p.m., and Sundays at 2:30 and 7:30 p.m. Tickets are priced at $22 on Friday and Saturday, $20 at all other times, with a $1 discount for students and seniors. For tickets, call (708) 481-3510 or visit www.ilthctr.org.

Tall Grass Arts Association, 267 Artists Walk, Park Forest

“Presents – Small Works for the Holidays” – Opens Friday, December 3

“Presents – Small Works for the Holidays,” featuring media and work not seen in the gallery before opens on Friday, December 3 with an opening reception from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. The show is open until Sunday, January 16, 2011. The event if free and open to the public. Gallery hours are 11 a.m. through 4 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday. For additional information, call 708-748-3377 or visit www.tallgrassarts.org.

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

“Waiting for Superman” Film Screening – Register By Monday, November 29

On Wednesday, December 1 at 5 p.m. at the Holiday Star Theater, 340 Main Street, Park Forest, GSU’s Metropolitan Institute for Leadership in Education (MILE) is sponsoring a special screening of the documentary film “Waiting for Superman” by Davis Guggenheim. A panel discussion of the issues will follow the film screening. Panelists will include Dr. Kamala Buckner, Superintendent of Thornton Township High School District; Dr. Gregory Jackson, Superintendent of Ford Heights District 169; Jim Broadway, Publisher, State School News Service; Dr. Lantina Koster, Member, Illinois State Board of Education; and Dr. Blondean Davis, CEO, Southland College Prep Charter School. Admission to the film is $10. Admission to the film panel discussion and refreshments is $20. Advance registration is required by November 29 to 708-534-4024 or by e-mail at: [email protected].

Prairie State College (PSC), 202 S. Halsted, Chicago Heights

‘Shifting Paradigms’ Exhibit –Through December 15

‘Shifting Paradigms,’ an art exhibit featuring two PSC alumni is now in progress and will run through Wednesday, December 15 at the college’s Christopher Art Gallery. The exhibit will feature photographs by PSC alumni Margaret Patton of Frankfort, and Karen Sparrow or Portage, Indiana. Both Sparrow’s and Patton’s photographs reconstruct images to present a distinct view of an alternate reality. Gallery hours are Monday through Thursday from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. and Wednesday and Thursday from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. Visits can also be made by appointment. For additional information or to make an appointment for a visit, call the PSC Foundation at 708-709-3636.

CAUTION – Featuring Songs of the Grateful Dead

Harte’s Saloon – Thursday, December 2

CAUTION will be playing every Thursday night at Harte’s Saloon, 9858 S. Artesian. If you are a fan of the Grateful Dead, Phish and great musical jams, check out this band. For more information, call Harte’s Saloon at 708-424-2618.

Educational Lectures & Opportunities

Thorn Creek Nature Center, 247 Monee Rd., Park Forest

Roots and Shoots – Saturday, December 4

On Saturday, December 4 from 10 a.m. to noon, children ages 5 – 10 are encouraged to explore the environment, their community and the world around them in this monthly program. There is a fee of $5 per child per month. For additional information, call 708-747-6320.

Monkey Mind Art Studio & Gallery, 3 W. Nebraska St., Frankfort

Guided Meditation – Wednesday, December 1

On Wednesday, December 1 from 7 p.m. to 8:30 p.m., join Patricia Fares O’Malley, PhD., C.Ht., for an amazing evening of relaxation, healing and rejuvenation. Guided imagery is simply the use of imagination to create a response in the body. This response can be physical and used for healing illnesses as well as to heal emotional issues such as grief, relationship issues, anxiety, depression, etc., and can also be used to improve physical performance; from anything like improving a golf swing, improving completed free throw shots in basketball, to playing the piano. The event is held on the first Wednesday of each month. There is a fee of $15. For additional information, call 815-464-8818 or visit www.monkeymindartstudio.com.

Self Hypnosis Class – Thursday December 2 & 9

On Thursday, December 2 & 9 from 7 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. Patricia Fares O’Malley, PhD., C.Ht. will teach a Self Hypnosis Class. Self-hypnosis has been called the “New Way to Successful Living.” It can bring great benefits to your life such as more energy, better health, lasting peace of mind, success and happiness. You will learn how to bypass your conscious thoughts and tap into your subconscious mind to re-program yourself for the life you have always wanted to live. Pat is a psychologist who has worked with hypnosis for over 20 years and has a private hypnosis practice in the south suburbs. There is a fee of $75 for both sessions. For additional information, call 815-464-8818 or visit www.monkeymindartstudio.com.

Rich Township Free Basic Computer Classes for Adults

Rich Township is offering free basic computer skill classes for adults every Tuesday and Thursday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Leonard Robinson Family Services Center, 22013 Governors Highway, Richton Park. Participants will learn Microsoft Word, Excel, PowerPoint, internet skills, résumé building skills, and more. Classes are open only to residents of Rich Township. For additional information, call Mark Mason or Joe Moran at 708-748-6722.

Healthy Living

Greater Chicago Food Depository

Fresh Produce Day – Wednesday, December 1

The Greater Chicago Food Depository offers a Fresh Produce Day for low-income residents on Wednesday, December 1 from 9:30 a.m. to noon at the transportation garage of Rich Township, 22013 Governors Highway, Richton Park. This event is held on the first Wednesday of every month. Please note that doors do not open until 9:30 a.m. South suburban residents in need are eligible to pick up a variety of fresh fruits and vegetables. For additional information, call Pantry Director Vicki Sline at 708-748-6722.

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

Senior Citizen Weekday Lunch

Senior citizens of all income levels are invited to lunch weekdays at the Community Nutrition Network (CNN) site located inside the Rich Township’s Shirley J. Green Senior Center. The CNN site is open to all south suburban residents, including those living outside of Rich Township. Participants must be 60 years of age or older. The suggested donation for lunch is $2.50. Lunch is served Monday through Friday at noon. Bingo begins at 11 a.m. For additional information or to make a reservation for lunch, call 708-747-2700.

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

Walk-In Flu & Pneumonia Clinic

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

Babies, Teens and Adults Immunization Clinics

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

Blood Pressure Screening

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

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

Free Counseling Services Available

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

Partnership for Prescription Assistance (PPA)

Assistance With Medications & Health Services

If you, or someone you know, are struggling to pay for medications every month, they may be able to get the medicines they need for free or almost free through the Partnership for Prescription Assistance. If you live in Illinois, you can get access to more than 475 public and private programs available to help you pay for your medicines. Simply visit http://www.pparx.org/en/click_illinois to find out if you can apply to any of these great programs and to get connected with 10,000 free clinics and doctors.

This & That

Park Forest Historical Society (PFHS)

Nominations for the Park Forest Hall of Fame Now Being Accepted

Nominations for the Park Forest Hall of Fame are being accepted through December 15th. Nomination forms and Guidelines can be found at the 1950s Park Forest House Museum, 141 Forest Blvd., Park Forest on Saturdays from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m., the lobby of Village Hall, 350 Victory Drive, the Park Forest Library, 400 Lakewood Blvd., or on the Society’s website at www.parkforesthistory.org. Nominations can only be made through submission of the form. The 2011 Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony will be held on April 3, 2011 at Freedom Hall.

Faith United Protestant Church, 10 Hemlock St., Park Forest

Free Java Tuesdays

All are invited to Faith United Protestant Church for FREE Java Tuesdays. Visitors are asked to go to the Indianwood Boulevard side entrance between 8:30 a.m. and 10 a.m. for free curbside service or to come and sit a bit. The event will continue each Tuesday as a form of outreach to the community throughout the summer and fall. For more information, call 708-747-1330.

Celebration Ministries, 424 Indianwood, Park Forest

C4 Underground Youth Gathering – Every Tuesday & Thursday

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

Coffee House/Karaoke Night – Friday, December 3

On Friday, December 3 from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m., come to sing, dance, read, play a game or sit back and relax at the monthly Coffee House/Karaoke Night. This event is held on the first Friday of each month. For more information, call Celebration Ministries at 708-748-1995.

Roots and Wings, 215 Nashua St., Park Forest

Current Events Topic Group – Every Monday

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

Rainbow Café

Monthly Meeting – Saturday, December 4

The Rainbow Café is an opportunity for single or partnered gays, lesbians, bisexuals or other sexual minorities, and their allies, over age 18 to meet one another and socialize in a safe and supportive atmosphere. Those attending are encouraged to bring some non-alcoholic drinks and a dessert or snack to pass, or bring a financial donation. However, neither is mandatory.

The Rainbow Café is held from 7 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. on the 1st Saturday of each month at the Unitarian-Universalist Community Church, 70 Sycamore

Donate Unused Air Miles to Support Families of Wounded Servicemembers

“Operation Hero Miles” collects unused frequent flyer miles to help military families visit service members who were injured in Iraq or Afghanistan and are recovering in military hospitals around the world. Airline partners are: AirTran, Alaska Airlines, American, Frontier, Midwest, Northwest, United, and US Airways. To donate airline miles, visit www.FisherHouse.org.

Donate to Troops Serving Abroad

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

Greening of Park Forest

Sertoma Centre, Inc., 4343 W. 123rd St., Alsip

Recycle Unused Wheelchairs

If you have a used motorized wheelchair that you no longer need and would like to help a person with a disability, the Sertoma Centre will accept your donation. Contact Melanie Jones at 708-730-6206 for additional information.

South Suburban Family Shelter Used Cell Phone Collection Drive

South Suburban Family Shelter (SSFS) is seeking cell phone donations for their ongoing fundraising program. Proceeds from the collection fund the critical programs and services provided to families who experience domestic violence. All victim services are provided free of charge and are available in English and Spanish. Cell phone collection sites currently include:

  • SSFS Administrative Office, 18139 Harwood, Homewood, IL
  • Bergstein’s NY Deli, 200 Dixie Highway, Chicago Heights, IL
  • Doyle Designed Salon, 2630 Flossmoor Rd., Flossmoor, IL

All donations are tax deductible and receipts are available at collection sites. For more information about SSFS or the fundraising drive, please contact Ms. Meilach at 708-794-2140, extension 303.

Local Recycling Resources and Proper Disposal of Unused Medicine

Do you have old televisions, computers, video games or other electronics or household appliances that need to be recycled? Want to know how to properly dispose of old or unused medication? Click on the “Recycling” icon found on the top of eNews Park Forest and you will find useful information on proper recycling/disposal that will not only be good for the environment, but in some cases, earn you a few dollars as well.

Safe Disposal Program – Bio-waste

The Park Forest Health Department and Environment Commission have partnered to provide information on the proper disposal of bio-waste such as used syringes or lancets (medical sharps). Begin by purchasing a Sharps container to dispose of your medical sharps for $10 at the Park Forest Health Department. Return the filled container to the Park Forest Health Department and purchase a new container. Call Brenda Walker at 708-748-1118 for more information.

Recycle Used Cell Phones and Cell Phone Accessories

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

Go Green with a Free Tote Bag

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

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