The River Forest Historic Preservation Commission will sponsor a program on several of the community’s architectural and historic gems, from 2 to 3 p.m. on Sunday, Sept. 18 at the River Forest Public Library, 735 Lathrop Ave. 

It is free and open to the public.

Commissioner Al Popowits will center his program on local architectural gems such as the Frank Lloyd Wright-designed Winslow House and River Forest Tennis Club as well as the public library and the First Presbyterian Church. Popowits will describe the architectural styles and talk about their historic significance to the community, among other aspects. 

While there were dozens of buildings to choose from, a “nice problem,” Popowits said he narrowed down the choices to structures he “could get inside of.” There also was a fair amount of information available on each. 

As an example, the Winslow House, one of the most notable structures in River Forest, was the first home designed by Frank Lloyd Wright after he left the office of Adler and Sullivan. 

It is on the National Register of Historic Places as well as the village’s list of 296 significant properties. The tennis club is another Wright-designed structure. River Forest’s library was designed by noted architect William Drummond. 

First Presbyterian, a Gothic revival designed by the Chicago firm Holmes and Flinn, was completed in 1927. 

The program’s purpose is to build support for the Historic Preservation Commission and its mission as well as to explain how the community’s architecture enriches and adds value to River Forest, Popowits said.

This is the first outreach effort by the commission since ordinance changes several months ago also gave the commission the ability to take a higher profile in advocating for the preservation of significant River Forest structures. 

The presentation could be made available to church groups and other organizations, Popowits said. 

A second program is slated for the spring. 

Deborah Kadin

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