Deb Quantock McCarey is a freelance writer who has worked with Wednesday Journal Inc. since 1995, writing features and special sections for all its publications. An avid urban gardener and growing naturalist, she is also a local "green" advocate and community volunteer. As a WJ gardening blogger, Deb is also the host of Deb's Big Backyard, which runs on oakpark.com and airs on Oak Park public cable, Channel 6. In partnership with her spouse, Kevin J. McCarey, she is also a writer/producer for Lyman Street Productions and Print at www.lymanstreetproductions.com, a small business in Oak Park that produces and provides web content.
Late afternoon on a Friday in Oak Park, foodies Marie and Jim Newman of LaGrange, are lounging in the new "hidden bar" at Mancini's Italian Bistro, 1111 Lake St., talking about how and why they purchased the local eatery, and joking about a full service bar that soon won't be a secret at all.
The season of All Hallow's Eve events is a good time for a walkabout in one of our many local cemeteries — not for a fright but a history lesson, as told this year by Civil War veterans, buried in our own backyard: the bucolic grounds of Forest Home Cemetery in Forest Park.
Before 2005, when the Oak Park-River Forest Area Walk-In Ministry (now Prevail) was established, people in times of financial crisis and struggle would often go from congregation to congregation and ring the bell, hoping clergy would answer their desperate plea for help.