Blog Posts, Local, Park Forest

In and Around Park Forest for the Week of July 9, 2017

Reccling Events

Park Forest, IL—(ENEWSPF) — Looking for a way to get rid of your old electronics, paper and other “junk” accumulating in your garage, basement, attic or other nooks and crannies while also helping the environment? The Park Forest Growing Green Recycle Fest is taking place on Saturday, July 15 from 8 a.m. to noon in DownTown Park Forest at the Intersection of Main Street and Cunningham Lane — adjacent to the Park Forest Farmers’ Market. Click here for more information

If your club, organization or local business will be holding activities or events in the community that you would like published, please send an e-mail to [email protected] with the details no later than 5 p.m. on Friday.  Thank you.

Village of Park Forest

Village Board Meeting – Monday, July 10

The Village of Park Forest Board will meet on Monday, July 10 at 7 p.m. The meeting will be held 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 Commissions are scheduled to meet the week of July 9:

  • Tuesday, July 11 at 6:30 p.m. – Commission on Human Relations
  • Tuesday, July 11 at 7 p.m. – Youth Commission
  • Wednesday, July 12 at 7 p.m. – Economic Development Advisory Group

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

2017-18 Season Announced – Tickets Sales for Multiple Events Begin Monday, July 10

Whether you enjoy music, dance, or theatre, the 2017-18 season at Governors State University’s Center for Performing Arts invites you to explore your connection to others through art. The season goes on sale Monday, July 17, but those who purchase three or more performances may purchase their tickets starting on Monday, July 10 to get the best seats. Start the season with a celebration of animals in song at ‘The Animal Instinct’ opera. Complete with an “animal-friendly” vegetarian menu of treats and wine, this up-close experience on stage pays tribute to our furry friends and more. Explore the dynamics of a transgender relationship through time and place, from a small town to a big city, in Shepsu Aakhu’s ‘Starting Over’ by MPACCT Theatre. Bridge cultural and generational divides at the ‘Stomping Grounds Dance Festival,’ featuring over 50 dancers from Chicago Human Rhythm Project, Ensemble Español Spanish Dance Theater, Muntu Dance Theatre of Chicago, and Trinity Irish Dance, as part of GSU’s Family and Friends Weekend on October 7. Learn about the complexities of human nature in Sarah Saltwick’s modern adaptation of Nathaniel Hawthorne’s ‘The Scarlet Letter,’ presented by GSU’s Theatre and Performance Studies program. Join award-winning Chicago Dreamgirl Donica Lynn (Chicago Tribune’s Chicagoan of the Year 2016) for a deeply moving celebration of Aretha Franklin, presented by Artists Lounge Live. In December, celebrate the holiday season at Salt Creek Ballet’s performance of Tchaikovsky’s ‘The Nutcracker.’ In 2019, Governors State University will celebrate its 50th anniversary. In anticipation of this milestone, we’re kicking off 2018 with ’50 Years of Wonder: A Tribute to Stevie Wonder’ by “America’s Got Talent” finalists Sons of Serendip. Then, we’ll ‘Lift Every Voice’ in tribute to the black experience for our second Opera Up Close production. Southland Area Theatre Ensemble brings Broadway center stage with Tony award-winning ‘Caroline, or Change.’ The Blues and Hip Hop Experience draws generations together in a collaborative show featuring the legendary Blues icon Billy Branch and a spoken word collective, including Avery R. Young, FM Supreme, and more. For the complete list of programs, please visit

Tickets and Additional Information

Tickets range from $13 to $55, with discounts available for students ($10 tickets), seniors 65+ ($25 tickets), groups of ten or more, and patrons purchasing three or more shows (15% off).


By Phone: 708-235-2222

In Person at the Box Office: 1 University Parkway, University Park, IL

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

Parking is free. For best GPS directions, always use the location search term “Governors State University” only.

Crete Public Library District, 1177 North Main Street

The following events are scheduled at the Crete Public Library District the week of July 9:

  • Monday, July 10 at 10 a.m. – Music and Movement – Dancing, singing, and rhythm with scarves, ribbons and instruments. For ages birth-5. Register.
  • Monday, July 10 at 4:30 p.m. – Yoga for Tweens – Meditation and relaxation exercises. Bring a yoga mat and water bottle. For ages 8+. Register.
  • Monday, July 10 at 7 p.m. – Knot Just for Knitters – Share camaraderie while working on knitting, crocheting or any other type of needlework project. For adults.
  • Tuesday, July 11 at 10 a.m. – Summer Storytime at Benton St. Bakery – For ages birth-5.
  • Tuesday, July 11 at 7 p.m. – The X-Planets: Discovering Other Earths – NASA Ambassador Art Maurer discusses the search for other planets where water and life could exist. Register.
  • Wednesday, July 12 at 6:30 p.m. – Cardboard Challenge – Learn about Caine’s Arcade and make your own game or shelter using only duct tape and cardboard. For families. Register.
  • Thursday, July 13 at 4:30 p.m. – Knitting 101 –  Learn the basics of knitting and crocheting or improve your skills in this class. Instruction continues on July 20 and 27. For ages 7+. Register.
  • Thursday, July 13 at 7 p.m. – Knot Another Ball of Yarn! Crochet Group –Beginners, bring an H-size (5mm) crochet hook and Medium 4 weight yarn in white or any pastel color. For teens and adults.
  • Friday, July 14 from 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. – Open Build – Drop-in and complete our building challenges using a variety of objects. For children of all ages, accompanied by an adult.
  • Saturday, July 15 at 1 p.m. – Summer STEAM – A STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, Math) program with hands-on activity stations and stories. For ages 6-8. Register.

For additional information or to register for an event, call 708-672-8017 or visit

DePaul University Art Museum, 935 West Fullerton, Chicago

‘Stranger Things’ Summer Exhibition – Through August 6

Art is meant to stimulate discussion and that is precisely the goal of DePaul Art Museum’s “Stranger Things” exhibition, which encourages patrons to ask: What is it? The “Stranger Things,” runs through August 6, and draws from the museum’s permanent collection and features sculpture, paintings and drawings from several Chicago-based artists. Most of the artworks in the exhibition are part of the collection donated to the museum last year from Chuck Thurow, former director of the Hyde Park Art Center. Featured works also came from Suzanne Rose, a former Chicago gallery owner, and from private collections. The artists in “Stranger Things,” create art that hovers between “abstraction and figuration,” Widholm said. “They create forms that are vaguely familiar but impossible to name.” Some works may make viewers think of plants, building, animals or body parts, she said. Artists featured in the exhibition include Richard Rezac, Magalie Guerin, Sterling Lawrence, Chris Garofalo, Sandra Perlow, Alex Chitty, Miriam Bloom, Jim Lutes, Paul LaMantia, David Richards, Robert Bladen and David Jackson. “Stranger Things” accompanies two ongoing solo artist exhibitions at the museum: “Vessels of Genealogies,” featuring works by Dominican-American artist Firelei Báez, and “To Name It Is To See It,” featuring art by Chicago-based artist Hương Ngô. All three exhibitions close on Aug. 6.

Additional summer program

  • On July 13, Widholm will conduct a curator’s tour of the “Stranger Things” exhibition at 12:30 p.m. The event is free and open to the public. Visit to register.

The museum is located at 935 W. Fullerton Ave. Hours are 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Wednesday and Thursday, 11 a.m. to 5 pm. Friday, Noon to 5 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. The museum is closed Monday and Tuesday. Additional information at or 773-325-7506.

Firelei Báez, Hương Ngô Bring Their Work to DePaul Art Museum – Through August 6

Caribbean and Asian influences will be on display at the DePaul Art Museum this spring with Miami artist Firelei Báez and Chicago artist Hương Ngô. The pair will provide their respective works for two exhibitions set to run through August 6 at the museum on DePaul University’s Lincoln Park Campus. Báez’s exhibition, “Vessels of Genealogies,” tells stories of identity, history and politics through bright colors, patterns, hairstyles and textiles depicted in her large-scale paintings and tapestries, said Julie Rodrigues Widholm, the museum’s director and chief curator. “Vessels of Genealogies” will be the main exhibition on the first floor of the museum. The second exhibition will feature Ngô’s new work on Vietnamese anti-colonial organizer Nguyễn Thị Minh Khai. The works were inspired by Ngô’s trips to Vietnam and France, according to Widholm. “To Name It Is To See It” will touch on topics including colonialism, political activism, women’s rights, surveillance, class, language and Vietnamese history. Admission is free at DePaul Art Museum, located just east of the CTA’s Fullerton ‘L’ stop. Museum hours are Wednesdays and Thursdays from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m., Fridays from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., and Saturdays and Sundays from noon to 5 p.m. The museum is closed Mondays and Tuesdays. For more on DePaul Art Museum’s upcoming exhibitions and events, call 773-325-7506 or visit

 ‘Glimpses of the Great War’ Exhibit – Through August

When U.S. President Woodrow Wilson declared war on the German Empire April 6, 1917, one Lincoln Park neighborhood family with DePaul University ties was changed forever. Now 100 years after the U.S. joined the Great War, known more commonly as World War I, the story of the Ward family — and their ties to the university, St. Vincent de Paul Parish and Chicago — is the subject of a new exhibit titled “Glimpses of the Great War.” The exhibit, which is open to the public through August, is on the first floor of the John T. Richardson Library, 2350 N. Kenmore Ave. on DePaul’s Lincoln Park Campus in Chicago. The exhibit centers on the Ward family and their nine children who grew up on Fullerton Avenue, four blocks from St. Vincent de Paul Parish in Chicago, according to Andrea Bainbridge, university archivist.  All eight male children attended DePaul Academy, a high school run by the parish. Five served in the Great War and two died. Brothers William and Joe were enrolled at the Vincentian Seminary in Perryville, Missouri, preparing to be priests, during the war, added Lisa Geiger, special collections’ archives processing assistant.  In the years following ordination, William returned to Chicago as principal of DePaul Academy as part of eight decades of service to the order that took him around the world. Joe, meanwhile, became a DePaul University English professor and later served as the coordinator of college alumni before passing away in 1978. At the time of Joe’s passing, DePaul’s enrollment had risen to more than 12,000, a significant difference from the roughly 300 who attended with the Wards in the early days of the university, according to Geiger. Bainbridge — with the help of Geiger — unearthed photos, memorabilia and letters from the 1910s to the 1970s, which reveal the changes to DePaul’s campus and the family. Items in the exhibit include:

  • Memorial cards for both Ward brothers who died in the war. William led the funeral service for his brother Albert in 1919, before William and Joe led a funeral mass together for brother Oliver in 1921.
  • A 1918 issue of The Minerval, DePaul’s bi-monthly version of a student newspaper at the time, which featured updates on soldiers with DePaul ties and letters from the front lines.
  • A series of encouraging letters to the DePaul community by then-President Francis X. McCabe, C.M., who also served as the pastor of St. Vincent de Paul Parish. One of these letters was to confirm that the university would remain open throughout the war.
  • An original copy of the Field Service Pocket Book, a U.S. military issued book small enough to fit in a pocket that covered basic procedures for expected conditions in Europe.
  • A Navy recruitment poster circa 1917.

All told, 584 people with DePaul ties including undergraduates, alumni and faculty members served in the military during World War I, according to Bainbridge. For additional information, visit

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

‘’Brass 2 – Bach, Brass and Bier’ – Tickets Now on Sale

Summer evening small ensemble concerts held at the beautiful and historic Ravisloe Golf Course, 18231 Park Avenue, in Homewood. Special on site pre-concert offerings to be announced soon at A la carte dinner available on site in the Bunker Bar & Grill from 5-7PM or show your Ravisloe tickets for 10% food and drink at the elegantly trendy La Voute in La Banque Hotel, 2034 Ridge Rd., just 5 minutes from Ravisloe. Tickets are now on sale for the July 26 — Brass 2 — Bach, Brass and Bier

The IPO Brass Quintet will transport you to the biergartens of Germany with festive selections by German and Austrian composers. Watch for details on a complimentary pre-concert craft beer tasting with sampled selections available for purchase during the concert. Single tickets are $30 in advance or $35 at the door if available. Individual student tickets, $10. Tickets can be purchased here or by phone, 708-481-7774.

Pre-concert dining options include:

La Voute in La Banque Hotel at 2034 Ridge Rd., Homewood. Show your concert tickets on concert night and receive 10% off your bill (food and beverage). Reserve through or call 708-798-6000. Or, a la carte dining is available in the Bunker Bar & Grill at Ravisloe beginning at 5PM. Call for a reservation, 708.798.5600.

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

Vietnam Transformed: The Art of Richard J. Olsen – Through August 12

The National Veterans Art Museum (NVAM) presents its newest exhibition–Vietnam Transformed: The Art of Richard J. Olsen as Symbolic Reality. The exhibition features work spanning the artist’s career, and will be on view through August 12th. The exhibit is free and open to the public. In collaboration with curators Andrew and Hathia Hayes, and with the curatorial assistance of Anthony F. Janssen, the National Veterans Art Museum is proud to feature an exhibition of work from throughout the career of longtime NVAM-artist and veteran, Richard J. Olsen. In his work, Richard Olsen conveys underlying themes such as the tension between good and evil, the experience of war, and his immediate environment–his studio–by embedding images that are symbolic and allegorical without relying on representation. Olsen began using symbolism early in his career, but this approach for conveying meaning came to the forefront during his mature period during which he creating paintings based on his wartime experiences as a transport helicopter pilot in the Vietnam War. The exhibition will showcase work spanning the artist’s career, but will highlight his “Wall” series, for which he is probably best-known. For additional information, visit, or call 312-326-0270.

Park Forest Historical Society

Park Forest House Museum Lets You ‘Step Back into the 1950s’

The 1950s Park Forest House Museum, at 227 Monee Road (inside St. Mary’s Catholic Church), Park Forest, Illinois, invites you to “Step Back into a 1950s.” The Museum is open Wednesday and Saturday, 1 to 3:30 p.m.; other times by appointment. One room represents a classroom in Forest Boulevard School, which was set up in a row of townhomes. Admission is Adults $5; children 12 and under free.  Park in the small lot by the flagpole and knock on the classroom door next to the museum sign. A guide will tell village history, and social and fashion trends of the era. Special tours can be arranged by calling Jane Nicoll, 708-481-4252, or Michael Gans, 708-305-3308.  Information on the society and museum, and email contact is at

Park Forest Public Library, 400 Lakewood Boulevard

The following events are scheduled at the Park Forest Library the week of July 9:

  • Monday, July 10 at 11 a.m. – Sunrise Storytime — Join us for a delightful morning of stories!
  • Monday, July 10 at 1 p.m. – Inventor’s Adventures — Join us for a new engaging Science experience. Each week we will try something new and exciting! Don’t miss out!
  • Monday, July 10 at 3 p.m. – Artistic Designs — Create masterpieces in our hands on art sessions. We’ll provide the materials, you bring your creativity!
  • Monday, July 10 at 3:30 p.m. – Do It Yourself Designs — Create, learn, and engage in new activities with teens!
  • Monday, July 10 at 7 p.m. – Maker’s Mindfulness Mondays — Join us each week as we learn how to become more tranquil and mindful in our lives. We will also be making something to take home.
  • Tuesday, July 11 at 10:30 a.m. – Meet the Gardener– Join our resident gardener Victoria in the Library garden. Identify specimens in our plantings. Harvest flowers and herbs for future PFPL programs. Learn to spot fellow visitors including native butterflies, honey bees, and birds.
  • Tuesday, July 11 at 11 a.m. – Creators in the Making — Drop in and discover your inner artist with one of our guided projects.
  • Tuesday, July 11 at 1:30 p.m. — Designer’s JENGA Challenge — The suspense is building — and so are you! Carefully pull a wood block out of the tower and place it on top. It’s easy at first, but as more blocks get pulled, the tower starts to get unsteady…and you’ll be on the edge of your seat just trying to keep it from falling! Stay cool, stay calm and stay steady, because the last player to complete their turn before someone makes it topple, wins!
  • Tuesday, July 11 at 4 p.m. — Color-Rama! Creator’s Circle — Take a load off from your summer activities and learn different media of art with other teens!
  • Tuesday, July 11 at 8 p.m. — Ravinia Concert – Virtuoso Exhibition — Come to the Info Zone desk to inquire about tickets to today’s Ravinia show taking place at the Pavillion. First come, first serve basis. Location: Ravinia in Highland Park, IL
  • Wednesday, July 12 at 10:30 a.m. – Baby Time — Join us for a weekly story-time designed exactly for your baby. Parents or caregivers are invited to read, sing and grow. This program is geared toward babies 0 – 36 months with an accompanying adult.
  • Wednesday, July 12 at 1 p.m. – Lemonade Story — Join us for a fun story and make your very own lemonade to take home.
  • Wednesday, July 12 at 3 p.m. — Teen Movie Matinee: ‘Saban’s Power Rangers’ —  Five ordinary teens must become something extraordinary when they learn that their small town of Angel Grove – and the world – is on the verge of being obliterated by an alien threat. Chosen by destiny, our heroes quickly discover they are the only ones who can save the planet. But to do so, they will have to overcome their real-life issues and before it’s too late, band together as the Power Rangers.
  • Wednesday, July 12 at 4 p.m. – Drop In Coloring for Adults — Our grown-up coloring circle is the perfect way to step back from the stress of everyday life and enjoy some relaxation! All supplies will be provided.
  • Wednesday, July 12 at 6:30 p.m. – Movie Night for Adults: ‘Hidden Figures’ — The story of a team of female African-American mathematicians who served a vital role in NASA during the early years of the U.S. space program.
  • Wednesday, July 12 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, July 13 at 11 a.m. – Toddler Time — 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, July 13 at 11:30 a.m. – Drop In Crafter’s Corner — Drop in and find a new craft, try a new technique or get inspired with a new trend, all while having fun!
  • Thursday, July 13 at 1 p.m. – Amazing Designs — Drop in and create a one of a kind dot art masterpiece!
  • Friday, July 13 at 1 p.m. – Innovators’ Corner — Drop by and embrace your creativity with our family-friendly crafts and much more.
  • Friday, July 14 at 3 p.m. – Generator’s Gaming Group — Show off your competitive side with your friends! From board games to video games, there will be plenty of fun!
  • Saturday, July 15 at 1 p.m. – Drop In Create Zone Crafts — Drop in to kids’ zone and see what we are creating today!
  • Saturday, July 15 at 2 p.m. — 3D Designs with artist Pat Moore — Enjoy this free art session with local artist extraordinaire Pat Moore. We will be building one of a kind sculptures. All materials are provided! Registration Required.

For additional information, or to register for an event call 708-748-3731 or visit

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

Chicago Sculpture International – Through July 13

The Chicago Sculpture International exhibit will be at PSC’s Christopher Art Gallery through Thursday, July 13.  The exhibit is free and open to the public.  The exhibit will feature curated works by a cooperative of over 150 sculptors from Chicago, the U.S. and abroad.  The group focuses on the advancement and appreciation of sculpture through exhibitions, workshops and collaborations. Gallery hours are Monday through Thursday from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.; Wednesday and Thursday from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. on days when the college is open.  For additional information, call 708-709-3636 or visit

Rich Township Senior Center, 297 Liberty Drive, Park Forest

Rich Township Summer Lunch Program for Seniors — Through July 19

Park Forest seniors can enjoy a great meal and great company in the Village now through July 19 thanks to the Rich Township Senior Center’s Summer Lunch Program. Lunch is served every Monday and Wednesday beginning at noon for a cost of $3 per meal. Meals are available for dine-in or carry-out. Dine-in seating is limited. The Rich Township Senior Center is located at 297 Liberty Drive in DownTown Park Forest. For more information, or to make a reservation, call 708-228-5046.

Thursday Game Days

Come join us at the Rich Township Senior Center, 297 Liberty Drive, in DownTown Park Forest every Thursday morning at 10 a.m. to play games with old friends and new friends.  We have a few games on hand, Trivial Pursuit, Racko, Pente, Chess, Pictionary, High Hand and Rummikub.  If none of these suit your taste, feel free to bring in your favorites.  Come join in the fun.  This is a new program, so please help to spread the word.

Adult Coloring

On the 2nd and 4th Tuesday morning of each month at 10 a.m., come to the Senior Center to participate in the new Adult Coloring Group.  The Center has supplies and several types of mediums to color with.  For additional information, call 708-748-5454.

SPAA Theater for Performing Arts, 371 Artists Walk

D-Erania Jazz Series – Tickets Now on Sale

Contemporary Jazz Saxophonist & Grammy Nominee, D-Erania founded and launched the D-Erania Jazz Series in 2017; a dynamic live performance concert series designed to create an unforgettable experience for audiences, and to connect them with outstanding artists and musicians from around the world. There are four concerts scheduled per year; one per quarter, and take place at the beautiful SPAA Theater for Performing Arts in DownTown Park Forest. The performances showcase D-Erania and her live band with special guest, international artists. Two of the performances took place this past February and May. The exceptional lineup remaining for 2017 is:

  • Friday, August 18th for show #3, D-Erania will be joined by the soulful, international jazz violinist, Christian Howes.
  • The 2017 finale concert on Saturday, November 4th the D-Erania Jazz Series will feature vocalist, Tina Crawley for the benefit of ShoVal & More, NFP, the producer of The Gold Rush Women’s Conferences

For more information about D-Erania and the D-Erania Jazz Series please visit:  Tickets for any of the upcoming concerts can be purchased from her website under the “D’s Jazz Series” link. D-Erania can also be contacted via email: [email protected]

Tall Grass Arts Association, 367 Artists Walk, Park Forest

‘Paint and Sip with Georgia O’Keefe’ – Saturday, July 15

Tall Grass Arts Association will host a ‘Paint & Sip with Georgia O’Keefe’ on Saturday, July 15 from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. at the Gallery.  Help support the Tall Grass Gallery and School by participating in this evening of creating your own painting while enjoying music, hors d’oeuvres, wine and beer. Governors State University Art Professor Javier Chavira will provide guidance as you develop your Georgia O’Keeffe-inspired work of art. No experience necessary! This all-inclusive event is meant to be fun, socially interactive and memorable! Tickets are $50 per person and can be purchased at the Gallery and at the door the day of the event. To purchase tickets and for additional information, contact Cody Ziebell at 708-748-3377 or at

Call for Entries for Upcoming ‘MARK of the HAND’ Juried Exhibition – Deadline Friday, August 11

Tall Grass Arts Association is calling for entries for its upcoming juried exhibition entitled ‘MARK of the HAND.’  The exhibit will be held September 29 through November 4. Entry deadline is Friday, August 11. From prehistory, humans have told their story by literally leaving marks with their hands. Direct mark making and hand forming are the theme of the ‘MARK of the HAND’ art show. ‘MARK of the HAND’ will include two and three-dimensional art which celebrates the legacy of traditional, pre-1800 art tools and processes. The artwork will show evidence of being made directly by the human hand. Media includes (but not limited to) painting, drawing, original printmaking (etchings, engravings, woodcuts and lithographs), sculpture, ceramics, metals, fiber, glass, and wood. Cash “Awards of Excellence” will be given.  Curated and juried by Gail Otterson, MFA and Bill Wild, BA, GIA.  Please Note: ‘MARK of the HAND’ will not include photography or digital art.  As a complement to this handmade show, Tall Grass Gallery will host a digital art show in April 2018. Additional information can be found here. There is an entry fee of $25 for the submission of three artworks. Submit entries through EntryThingy: For additional information or questions about Tall Grass, call 708-748-3377 or visit

The Drama Group, 330 West 202nd Street, Chicago Heights

‘Heathers, the Musical’ – Tickets Now on Sale

The Drama Group is totally jazzed to present the hilariously dark musical comedy, HEATHERS, The Musical, brought to you by the award-winning creative team of Kevin Murphy, Laurence O’Keefe and Andy Fickman (Reefer Madness, Legally Blonde and Desperate Housewives); and directed by the dynamic duo of Curt & Tammy Lang. Performances will be held at The Drama Group’s Milord Studio Theatre on July 28, 29, August 3, 4 & 5 at 7:30 p.m. and matinees on July 30, August 5 & 6 at 2:00 p.m. ‘Heathers, The Musical’ is the darkly delicious musical of teen love and angst with an 80’s rock beat. A brainy, beautiful teenage misfit hustles her way into the most powerful and ruthless clique at Westerberg High: the Heathers, but is pressured into acts of cruelty…until her boyfriend helps her get revenge. ‘Heathers The Musical’ is a hilarious, heartfelt show based on the most twisted teen comedy of all time. With its moving love story, laugh-out-loud comedy, and unflinching look at the joys and anguish of high school, Heathers will be the most popular new musical this summer. Are you in, or are you out? NOTE: Adult Theme & Language. Tickets are $21 for adults; $20 for seniors and $15 for students with ID. Group discount rates are also available.  Good seats are still available.  Tickets can be purchased by calling the Box Office at 708-755-3444 or online here.  For directions and other information regarding Drama Group activities, please visit

Union Street Gallery, 1527 Otto Boulevard, Chicago Heights

Union Street Gallery Invitational 2017 – Through July 29

USG’s Invitational 2017 exhibit will run through Saturday, July 29.  There will be a reception on Saturday, July 15 from noon to 3 p.m.  Both the exhibit and reception are free and open to the public. Gallery hours are Wednesday & Friday from noon to 4 p.m., Thursday from noon to 7 p.m., and Saturday from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. For additional information, call 708-754-2601 or visit

Village of Park Forest, 350 Victory Drive

Main Street Nights 2017 – Wednesday, July 12

Main Street Nights in Park Forest 2017 continues through August 9th. As in the past, the events will take place at Cunningham and Victory Boulevard in DownTown Park Forest. Main Street Nights focuses on bringing the community together through music, games, food, etc. during these summer nights. Venders such as Dunagains Irish Pub will sell grilled items, sides, snacks, and beverages to the public. Every Wednesday, Main Street Nights will start between 5 o’clock and 6:30 p.m. depending on the day. Specific times are listed on the freedom hall website ( In case of rain, performances will be relocated to the Dining on the Green, which is located at 349 Main Street. This week’s scheduled events are:

Wednesday, July 12

6:30 p.m. – Terrance Simien’s Creole For Kidz!
This innovative, high quality, multi-cultural program is centered on the evolution of zydeco music.

7:30 p.m. – Terrance Simien & The Zydeco Experience
For nearly 30 years, GRAMMY award winning artist Terrance Simien, 8th generation Louisiana Creole has been shattering the myths about what his indigenous Zydeco roots music is and is not. Leading his Zydeco Experience band, Simien has become one of the most respected and accomplished artists in American roots music today. He and his band mates have performed over 7000 concerts, toured millions of miles to over 45 countries during their eventful career.

Summertime Bingo – Through July 31

Have fun while exploring Park Forest this summer!  Complete 5 tasks and/or activities across, down or diagonal (center is free square) for Bingo. Submit completed Bingo card along with proof of completion and you’ll be entered for a chance to win a $50 VISA Card. Game goes through July 31.  The winners will be announced during the August 9 Main Street Nights event.  There will be four winners. The tasks will involve visiting businesses and places of interest in Park Forest. Details can be found here. The Bingo cards with complete details about proof of task completion will be available in Village Hall and on our website starting June 1. In the meantime, please direct questions about the event to Monica DeLord at 708-283-5617 or [email protected].

Educational Lectures & Opportunities

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

Summer Camp with “Edu-tainment” for Your Creative Genius Ages 11 – 16 – Classes Begin Monday, July 17

Are you having a hard time finding the right camp that will engage your child’s brain and keep him/her entertained? Look no further — STEAM camp at GSU to the rescue. Faculty and staff in GSU’s College of Arts and Sciences have collaborated to bring middle and high school students, ages 11 to 16, a one-week, interactive learning experience. Each day of camp will be split into two sessions — with the morning focused on the sciences and the afternoon on the arts. In the morning, campers will discover robotics, explore the world of computer programming, and launch water rockets using hydraulic pressure. They’ll explore the natural world in the renowned Nathan Manilow Sculpture Park in the midst of the prairie on campus grounds. Afternoon sessions will include the technology of the theater, dronography, backstage tours at Center for Performing Arts, ceramics, and more. Camps are held on two different weeks, and students may register for one or both sessions:
Week 1: July 17 – 21 from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Week 2: July 24 – 28 from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Each session is $200 per camper. For those in need, a limited number of partial scholarships will be awarded on a first-come, first-serve basis. Each week offers different activities. Please visit or call us at 708-534-4088 for specific details.

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 where you will find a compilation of every college program offered online in Illinois offered on a full or part-time basis.

Prairie State College, 202 South Halsted Street, Chicago Heights

Fall 2017 Registration – Begins August 21

Registration for fall 2017 is open at Prairie State College (PSC). Credit courses begin Monday, August 21. Non-credit courses include a variety of single-day and multiple-session offerings that begin throughout the fall. Both credit and non-credit courses are listed in the fall class schedule, available on the PSC main campus, located at 202 S. Halsted St., Chicago Heights. The schedule also is available at area public libraries and online at To register for credit courses, new students must complete an enrollment application in person at the college or online. Current students can register for credit courses online or in person. Through Friday, Aug. 11, Enrollment Services is open Monday through Thursday, 7:30 a.m. to 7 p.m., and the college is closed on Fridays. Beginning Monday, Aug. 14, Enrollment Services will resume regular business hours of 8 a.m. to 7 p.m., Monday through Thursday, and 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. on Friday. Students can register for non-credit courses online or in person. To register online via Instant Enrollment, go to and select How To Register for Non-Credit Courses from the A-Z Index. Another option is to complete the registration form available online at or in the back of the printed course schedule. Students also can register for non-credit courses in person at the Matteson Area Center (MAC), located at 4821 Southwick Drive in Matteson, or in the Enrollment Services Office on the PSC main campus. Through Aug. 11, the MAC is open from 7:30 a.m. to 9:30 p.m., Monday through Thursday. Beginning Monday, Aug. 14, the MAC will resume regular business hours of 8 a.m. to 10 p.m., Monday through Thursday, and 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. on Friday. For more information about registering for courses, visit or call 708-709-3500.South Suburban College (SSC), 15800 South State Street, South Holland

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, you will find a comprehensive resource that ranks each university throughout the nation by size, degrees offered, tuition costs, admission, graduation and retention rates.

Green Events

Park Forest Environment Commission

‘Our Woodland Friends’ – Saturday, July 15

The next lecture in the 2017 Garden Series will be held on Saturday, July 15 at 10:30 a.m. at the Wetlands Discovery Center, 30 North Orchard Drive. The topic is: ‘Our Woodland Friends: Bugs, Birds, and Rabbits, Oh my! Plants that attract (and resist!) our local wildlife.’ The event is free and open to the public. This Gardening Series is sponsored by: The Village of Park Forest, Park Forest Environment Commission and the Thorn Creek Nature Center.

Nominate Your Neighbor for the Park Forest Sustainability Award

Nominations are now being accepted for the Park Forest Sustainability Award. Nominations accepted for any of the following including general appearance of property, rain barrels, rain gardens, raised planter beds (for raising produce), solar panels, minimal use of lawn chemicals (verified) and many other award options.  Download form with complete details. Form Applications are due by September 1 to the Department of Public Works, 350 Victory Drive.

Thorn Creek Audubon Society, Park Forest

Nature Education Programs at Thorn Creek Nature Center

Calling all schools, home school groups, day cares, preschools, youth, adult and family groups! Nature Education Programs are offered at Thorn Creek Nature Center throughout the year where your group can discover the plants and animals of Thorn Creek Woods. These Nature Education Programs are sponsored by the Thorn Creek Audubon Society. The Audubon Society and the Thorn Creek Nature Center announce their new Partnership for Programming to further the Society’s environmental education mission and give valuable assistance to Thorn Creek Nature Center in providing nature programming for groups of area children and adults. Some of the nature education programs offered this year include Birding by Sight and Sound, Creek Walk (the world of aquatic insects and metamorphosis), Trees Big and Small (identification by leaves and bark), Insects (what makes an insect unique), the Web of Life (interdependence of producers, consumers, predators and decomposers), Soils Hike (how soil fuels and supports life), and Night Hikes. On the Fall Color Hike learn why leaves change colors and what trees do to prepare for the long months of winter. Discover clues to wild animals’ identities and behavior by trails and trails in Wild Animal Tracks. Make your own track replica. On Vixen’s Trek you are the fox following your daily routines on Thorn Creek trails. Or visit the Historic Farm in the woods to explore an early 1900’s woodland farm. Groups can also arrange for a naturalist to come to your location for programs such as Wild Animal Tracks, Web of Life, Woodland Wildflowers, Soils, History of Thorn Creek Woods, and the like. The new partnership has already collaborated in sponsoring three programs: the Learn 70 Birds by Spring class, which runs from January through March; the Great Backyard Bird Count Open House that was held in February; and the Build a Gourd Birdhouse sessions to be held in March.  For information about Thorn Creek Audubon Society membership, events and projects: Thorn Creek Audubon Society, P. O. Box 895, Park Forest, Il 60466, or

Thorn Creek Nature Preserve, 247 Monee Road, Park Forest

Wednesday Morning Walkers

The Wednesday Morning Walkers takes place each Wednesday from 9 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. This free activity is for those ages 13 and older.  Follow the forest’s seasonal changes, enjoy light exercise and experience nature first-hand on 2 miles of Thorn Creek Woods Nature Preserve’s winding trails.  Trails can be wet or muddy, so please wear sturdy shoes.  Hiking is on natural surface trails across uneven terrain.  Registration is required two days before your first walk.  For additional information or to register, call 708-747-6320.

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

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

Village of Park Forest, 350 Victory Drive

Park Forest Growing Green Recycle Fest – Saturday, July 15

The Park Forest Growing Green Recycle Fest will take place on Saturday, July 15 from 8 a.m. to noon in DownTown Park Forest at the Intersection of Main Street and Cunningham Lane — adjacent to the Park Forest Farmers’ Market. Recycle your television ($10 for Park Forest residents & $20 for non-Park Forest residents), document shredding, electronic disposal, eye glass disposal, used clothing & shoe disposal, plastic grocery bags and drug disposal. Click here for more information

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:

Park Forest Health Department, 350 Victory Drive

School Physicals – Appointment Required

The Park Forest Health Department Nurses Plus offers affordable school physicals required for children entering preschool, kindergarten, sixth grade, and ninth grade. Physical exams are conducted by a family nurse practitioner. Dates available are: July 21, July 25, Aug. 4, Aug. 9, and Sept. 9. Times vary by date. For an appointment, call 708-748-1118. Parents should bring immunization records to the appointment. Learn more about the Park Forest Health Department

Walk About for Healthy Hearts – Every Saturday

Are you trying to be more active?  The Park Forest Health Department is hosting a walk about for healthy hearts every Saturday, at 9 a.m. The walks will begin at the Park Forest Village Green in DownTown Park Forest. All you need are your walking shoes! The walks will last 30 minutes and are more enjoyable if you:

  • Wear comfortable clothes,
  • Bring a friend to pass the time,
  • Make sure to stretch those muscles, and
  • Move your arms and maintain good posture.

Don’t forget a water bottle to stay hydrated. For additional information or to register for the weekly walks, call 708-748-1118.

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 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 708-755-3577 or visit

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 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].

Village of Park Forest, 350 Victory Drive

Park Forest Farmers’ Market – Through October 28

The Park Forest Farmers’ Market is open every Saturday thereafter through October 28 from 7 a.m. to noon.  The Market is located on the corner of Lakewood Boulevard & Cunningham Drive in DownTown Park Forest. Since 1974, the Park Forest Farmers’ Market has been connecting area residents with local farmers, food vendors and businesses.  The Market hosts 22 full spaces with a variety of fresh flowers, fresh fruits and vegetables, bakery goods, herbs and dairy products.  Local businesses are also on hand at the Market selling artwork, garden ornaments, jewelry and more. The Market accepts LINK/Snap card as well as Double Value Coupons & Senior Nutrition Coupons. Additional information about the Park Forest Farmers’ Market can be found here. If you are you a farmer, food vendor, or civic group who would be interested in a booth at the Park Forest Farmers’ Market, call the Park Forest Health Department for additional information at 708-748-1118.

This & That

Park Forest Toastmasters Club

Meeting – Tuesday, July 25

The Park Forest Toastmasters Club is scheduled to meet on Tuesday, July 25 at 7:30 p.m. at Freedom Hall, 410 Lakewood Boulevard in Park Forest.  The meeting is open to the public.  Toastmaster members develop speaking and leadership skills in a friendly and supportive atmosphere.  For additional information, visit:

Village of Park Forest, 350 Victory Drive

Park Forest Civic Leadership Academy — Applications Now Being Accepted Through July 31

The Park Forest Civic Leadership Academy is an invaluable nine-month experience that allows residents to meet area leaders, hear their stories, become more familiar with your community, and take part in informational briefings on the realities and challenges of local decision-makers and the organizations they lead. In this highly educational nine-month program, you’ll:

  • Explore your ability to critically think about how to resolve important issues impacting the community
  • Be part of a select group of diverse participants all focused on creating the best community possible
  • Be exposed to a host of current and future area leaders who you can add to your network
  • Discuss topics like arts, economic development, education, finance, local government, policing, and more


Must be a Park Forest resident

  • Submit your completed application before July 31, 2017
  • Be available to attend classes on the second Friday of the month, from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m., September to May
  • For those accepted, submit a $100 program fee by Sept. 1 to hold your seat
  • Be passionate about wanting your community to be the best it can be

More on the Park Forest Civic Leadership

Final 2023 Mayoral Forum with Joe Woods

Final Village Trustee Forum – March 19, 2023