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The Weeks | March 5: Flossmoor commission to recommend next steps in community/village relations


Flossmoor Board of Trustees will meet at 7:30 p.m. Monday, March 6, in the board room at village hall, 2800 Flossmoor Road. 

  • Find the agenda here.
  • Attend the meeting remotely here using ID 891 1213 2451 and passcode 60422 or call 312-626-6799.
  • Highlights: The Community Relations Commission will present its report with suggestions for next steps to follow up the community forum held in October on police/community relations. (More information below.) The board will consider granting a special use permit to Homewood-Flossmoor School District 233 for the construction of the proposed science wing on the South Building. The board will also consider adding $14,500 to the budget for the engineering study of viaduct drainage options and a $76,862 contract with Denler Inc. for street crack filling.  

Homewood-Flossmoor Park District Board of Commissioners will meet at 6 p.m. Tuesday, March 7, at the Goldberg Administrative Center, 3301 Flossmoor Road.

  • Find the agenda here.
  • Highlight: The board will discuss the district’s 2023-2024 budget.

Homewood Planning and Zoning Commission will meet at 7 p.m. Thursday, March 9, in the board room at village hall, 2020 Chestnut Road.

  • Find the agenda here.
  • Attend the meeting remotely here using ID 991 8481 1606 and passcode 573812 or call 1-312-626-6799.

H-F Ice Arena grand reopening
The H-F Ice Arena will officially reopen with a ribbon-cutting ceremony at 11 a.m. on Sunday, March 12, after a 15-month restoration of the facility. There will be a ribbon-cutting ceremony and special events, including hockey, mini-skating lessons, open skating and entertainment.


H-F basketball coach encouraged by 18-win season

Chronicle sportswriter David P. Funk provided a season review of the Homewood-Flossmoor High School varsity basketball team. First-year Coach Jamere Dismukes got a late start with his new team, but thought the 18-14 team showed promise.

Not My Dad feature

Reporter Nick Ulanowski sat down with members of local band Not My Dad, a regular at area venues and festivals, to learn more about the group’s history.

Not My Dad performs at Homewood Fall Fest in 2022. (Chronicle file photo)

MadTea celebrates album release

The Flossmoor Community House was packed Friday, March 4, to help local band MadTea celebrate the release of its album, “Ghost Tones.” The band includes Maddie Schmidt, guitar; Matt Epperson, guitar and bouzouki; Jon Elfner, guitar; and Lara Elfner, bass. Everybody sings.

The band and fans also bid farewell to band member Maddie Schmidt, who is heading to the west coast.

 Hazel Crest residents and local environmental activists continue to speak out

There wasn’t anything about Calumet Country Club on the Hazel Crest board agenda Feb. 28, but residents and members of South Suburbs for Greenspace used the public comment section at the end of the meeting to continue registering objections to a proposed redevelopment project and express dismay at the response of village leaders to their views.

Mayor Vernard Alsberry chastised members of the audience for interrupting him while he was trying to respond to questions, and he accused activists of spreading incorrect information, although he has not specified what they are getting wrong. Story to follow.

Chicago Southland Chamber of Commerce welcomes Bonita Parker as new chair

ComEd executive Bonita Parker was officially installed as chair of the Chicago Southland Chamber of Commerce on Thursday, Feb. 23, in a banquet and ceremony at Idlewild Country Club in Flossmoor. Story coming soon.

St. Patrick’s Day Parade

Flossmoor residents marched through the Flossmoor Park neighborhood on Saturday, March 4, bringing a touch of green and a lot of community spirit out on a very nearly spring day. 

Flossmoor Mayor Michelle Nelson, sporting a large shamrock, waves as the annual St. Patrick’s Day
parade begins Saturday afternoon, March 4. (Eric Crump/H-F Chronicle)


The Flossmoor Community Relations Commission was given the task by Mayor Michelle Nelson to recommend how the village should follow up the October forum on police/community relations. Members consulted with residents, generated ideas and will present their suggestions at the March 6 Board of Trustees meeting.

The forum in October was convened in response to the public outcry following the death of Madeline Miller, who was shot by Flossmoor police in July 2022.

The commission also heard from members of the Justice for Madeline Miller group, which led protests at village board meetings for months following Miller’s death, demanding justice and accountability. At two recent commission meetings, representatives from the group asked the commission to include discussions about improved police accountability in its recommendations.

The slide show for the commission’s presentation is available on pages 63 to 72 in the board packet for anyone who wants a preview.


Black History Month is over. Long live Black History Month.

As a white boy raised in a white town in a white state and educated by white teachers teaching the white history of our country, learning Black history is not something I can relegate to a single month. It takes a lot of study to fill in the blanks left by my upbringing.

I think most people these days are much better educated than I was. The successive waves of civil rights movements since the 1950s have had an impact. The most recent, Black Lives Matter, is 10 years old now. But history doesn’t sit still, and I thought it might be worth sharing some of the things I’m reading and listening to for those who are, like me, trying to keep up.

I hope you will let me know your recommendations, too. I’ll post them in The Weeks if you do. As progressive as our community is when it comes to diversity, equity and inclusion, we get reminded sometimes that we are not immune to racism (a point that was made during Flossmoor’s community forum in October). We need to work together to keep learning, changing and (hopefully) leading the way toward a future freed from social and economic caste.

My first offering is a book I read in 2021 by local author Badia Ahad-Legardy, “Afro-Nostalgia: Feeling Good in Contemporary Black Culture,” which I bought at Bookie’s when she was there doing a signing event.

I think of nostalgia as reimagining the past to provide comfort in the present. What Black people find comforting can be quite different from what white people find comforting. Her version of nostalgia is not a “zippity do dah” sort of pining for the old plantation. Not even. She analyzes four types of Black nostalgia, retribution, restoration, regeneration and reclamation, each of which is a way to rebuild an image of the past that resists the trauma of history.

Here are a few quotes to give you an idea of her style and approach:

  • “‘Afro-Nostalgia’ provides intellectual and affective ground from which to imagine new ways of black being, black doing, and black feeling that enable flourishing under adverse social and political circumstances.”
  • “Regenerative nostalgia privileges healing and revitalization rather than the repetition of pain, rendering this brand of nostalgia both sentimental and dynamic.”
  • “Nostalgia is a proxy for a wish left unfulfilled; its imagined continuity produces feelings of creativity, inspiration, and an ‘attainable future.'”
  • “Nostalgia is, above all, a product of the imaginary, and it is generally invented to foster a sense of both self-continuity and community.”

The lesson I take, especially from that last quote: Nostalgia is a story, and like all stories, it can be edited, revised, rewritten. We can shape the image of the past we want to cherish as part of becoming the future we want to see.

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Recent video: Celebrate the Season in Flossmoor