From left, state Rep. Debbie Meyers-Martin, Cook County Commissioner Donna Miller and U.S. Rep. Robin Kelly speak with the Chronicle on July 5 to provide an update on their police reform work. (Provided photo/Bionic Content)
Local News, Opinion

The Weeks | Aug. 20: Conversations with the Chronicle, Flossmoor viaduct project, Flossmoor presents at state fair, Willow therapy puppy, Homewood library carpet

THE WEEK >

Meetings

Homewood-Flossmoor School District 233 Board of Education Planning Committee will meet at 7:30 a.m. Monday, Aug. 21, in the Superintendent’s Conference Room in the South Building, 999 Kedzie Ave. in Flossmoor.

  • Find the agenda here.

Flossmoor Board of Trustees will meet at 7:30 p.m. Monday, Aug. 21, at village hall, 2800 Flossmoor Road. 

  • Find the agenda here.
  • Attend remotely here. Use ID 821 0443 8451, passcode 60422, or call 312-626-6799.
  • Highlight: The board will consider an amendment to village code to increase the semi-annual registration fees from $300.00 to $500.00. The draft ordinance is attached for your consideration. At the Aug. 7 meeting, the board approved a contract with Hera Property Registry to manage the property registrations for foreclosed and vacant properties and discussed increasing the registration fees.

Homewood Board of Trustees will meet at 7 p.m. Tuesday, Aug. 22, at village hall, 2020 Chestnut Road.

  • Find the agenda here
  • Attend remotely here. Use ID 980 4907 6232, passcode 830183, or call 312-626-6799.
  • Highlights: The board will consider a special use permit and variances for a ground-mount solar system at 1000 Maple Ave., a special use permit for a crematorium at 17803 Bretz Drive, and a contract with Hera Property Registry to track and report all vacant and foreclosed properties.

Stuff to do

Community cycle rides Tuesday and Saturday
GoodSpeed Cycles, 2125 183rd St. in Homewood, will host Choo-Choo Ride starting at the store at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday, Aug. 22. The four- to five-mile ride around the H-F community goes at a pace of about six to eight miles per hour, making it easy for all ages. Then at 8:30 a.m. Saturday, Aug. 26, GoodSpeed will host the nine-mile Off-Leash ride, which goes at a nine- to 10-mile-per-hour pace.

Yoga for Healthy Movement

The Cancer Support Center, 2028 Elm Road in Homewood, will host a yoga session from noon to 1 p.m. Tuesday, Aug. 22. Yoga for Healthy Movement is designed to reduce stress and address the physical side-effects of cancer. Classes consist of breath work, gentle stretches, seated and standing poses using the chair or wall for assistance, relaxation, and meditation. Call 708-798-9171 to register. 

Moves That Matter

The Cancer Support Center, 2028 Elm Road in Homewood, will host a session from 2 to 3 p.m. Tuesday, Aug. 22, designed to help with releasing tension, increasing flexibility, improving posture, coordination, injury prevention, pain management, and joint and gross stability. Each person works at their own pace and in their comfort zone. To attend this class in person call 708-798-9171.

Zumba Gold

The Cancer Support Center, 2028 Elm Road in Homewood, will host a Zumba session from 11 a.m. to noon on Wednesday, Aug. 23. Registration is required and space is limited. Call 708-798-9171 to register for the in-person class.

STEAM play at the science center
Homewood Science Center, 18022 Dixie Highway, will be open for STEAM Play from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Friday, Aug. 25. Enjoy the center’s exhibits plus the STEAM Studio and Imagination Playground. Tickets are $10. Register here.

Truckin’ into the School Year
The community is invited to the Truckin’ into the School Year Fest hosted by District 153 and the Village of Homewood from noon to 4 p.m. on Saturday, Aug. 26, at the village hall parking lot, 2020 Chestnut Road. At this free event kids will be able to see and sit in big trucks as a DJ plays kid-friendly music. There will be interactive games, a rock climbing wall, fun with bubbles, balloons and more. Food trucks will be on-site.

Wine tasting at Cork
Cork Gaming & Wine, 19870 Kedzie Ave. in Flossmoor, will host a wine tasting event from 2 to 5 p.m. on Saturday, Aug. 26.

Notices

Irons Oaks Foundation fall mum sale
The annual mum sale will go live Monday, Aug. 21, and run until 5 p.m. Monday, Sept. 11. There will be five colors available again this year (yellow, red, orange, pink/purple, and white). Pick up is from 2 to 6 pm on Thursday, Sept. 14 at the Irons Oaks Vollmer Road parking lot. Optional delivery for $25.

Club founded in H-F gets national attention
The 40+ Double Dutch Club, founded by south suburban women and born in 2016 on the Homewood-Flossmoor High School parking lot, made the “New York Times” on Sunday in a feature headlined “Jumping for Joy.”

< THE WEEK

Three south suburban legislators say progress is being made on policing
This story, based on the first episode of video series Conversations with the Chronicle, part 1 and part 2, explores the progress south suburban legislators — Congresswoman Robin Kelly, state Rep. Debbie Meyers-Martin and Cook County Commissioner Donna Miller — have seen in police reform at their respective levels of government.

Dog to be trained as Willow School’s therapy dog
Colleen Spain’s 8-week-old puppy, Walter, will be in training this next year so that he can be a therapy dog at Willow School in Homewood for the 2024-25 school year. The District 153 school board, at its Aug. 14 meeting, accepted Spain’s proposal to have Walter serve at the pre-kindergarten through second grade school. She will be the dog’s primary handler, but she has lined up two other teachers to help her during the school day.


Flossmoor shines light on community involvement, environmental action during state fair presentation
Flossmoor brought trees to the stage of the Lincoln Building at the Illinois State Fair on Wednesday, Aug. 16, an appropriate feature for a presentation of the village’s Plant the Gem project, which was one of four finalists for the Governor’s Hometown Award.

Flossmoor Assistant Village Manager Jonathan Bogue response to a judge's question while, from left, Kevin Dorsey, Brent Bachus and Stephanie Wright look on during the Governor's Hometown Award presentations on Wednesday, Aug. 16, at the Illinois State Fair. (Eric Crump/H-F Chronicle)
Flossmoor Assistant Village Manager Jonathan Bogue response to a judge’s question while, from left, Kevin Dorsey, Brent Bachus and Stephanie Wright look on during the Governor’s Hometown Award presentations on Wednesday, Aug. 16, at the Illinois State Fair. (Eric Crump/H-F Chronicle)

H-F High, Flossmoor schools watching Meijer tax appeal closely
The Flossmoor Meijer has generated a considerable amount of tax revenue for the community since opening in 2016, but property tax appeals by the retailer are a recurring threat to the budgets and plans of local school districts. 

Homewood library books moved to make way for carpeting
Homewood Public Library patrons will need to rely on staff for the next few weeks as books and stacks are relocated to prepare for new eco-friendly carpeting being installed starting Aug. 28.

Public works crews prepare commuter lot for curb project
Homewood Public Works crews have been removing soil in recent days in the median between Harwood Avenue and the commuter parking lot in preparation for landscaping and curb installation intended to make the lot more attractive and accessible.

Flossmoor Road viaduct drainage improvements project gains traction
flood-reduction project that has been years in the making continues to make progress. 

DEMOCRACY WATCH

Monday, Aug. 28, will be the 60th anniversary of Martin Luther King Jr.’s “I have a dream” speech delivered during the March on Washington.

Probably the most quoted line from the speech is “I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character.”

I don’t think that’s the heart of the speech, though. I’m almost finished reading “Why We Can’t Wait,” King’s book published later that year, so I’m probably influenced by his argument against the urging of moderates at the time, both Black and white, to ease up on the disruptive campaign for civil rights, to be patient and seek incremental change. I think the heart of the speech comes here:

“We have also come to his hallowed spot to remind America of the fierce urgency of now. … Now is the time to make real the promises of democracy. Now is the time to rise from the dark and desolate valley of segregation to the sunlit path of racial justice. Now is the time to lift our nation from the quick sands of racial injustice to the solid rock of brotherhood. Now is the time to make justice a reality for all of God’s children.

“There will be neither rest nor tranquility in America until the Negro is granted his citizenship rights. The whirlwinds of revolt will continue to shake the foundations of our nation until the bright day of justice emerges.”

Considering the recent waves of racial reckoning in 2012 after the killing of Trayvon Martin and 2020 after the killing of George Floyd were followed by traditional backlashes from white nationalists and state legislatures opposed to antiracism, it looks like the foundation is still shaking. 

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