Women and the Great Chicago Fire

Monday, Oct. 11, 1:15 p.m., Ballroom, Nineteenth Century Club

Author Carl Smith provides an overview of the Great Chicago Fire, which occurred 150 years ago on Oct. 8-10, 1871, based on his book, Chicago’s Great Fire: The Destruction and Resurrection of an Iconic American City. Smith also discusses the ways women, including through charitable associations, played a major role in the recovery. Brought by The Nineteenth Century Charitable Association. Proof of vaccination and masks are required; seating is socially distanced. $15, requested donation; free, members. More: nineteenthcentury.org. 178 Forest, Oak Park.

The Backstory Project

Beginning Tuesday, Oct. 12, view anytime with Open Door Repertory

Because Open Door believes theater is about storytelling, when they found they could not produce live shows during the pandemic, they turned to telling the stories of individuals around town, “people whose efforts enrich the lives of our communities,” such as restaurant owners who create spaces for people to meet, not just eat, and editors and publishers of local news who keep community members informed. The first video release is an interview with our own  Growing Community Media publisher Dan Haley. New releases each week. Free; donations gratefully accepted. Watch here: opendoortheater.net

Walk for Equity and Opportunity in the Arts

Sat., Oct. 9, 9:30 a.m., Stairway of the Stars

Join Maywood Fine Arts (MFA) supporters in orange shirts for the Pumpkin Patch Parade with celebrity guest Sylvester Powell from Netflix’s “All American” leading the way. This year’s event brings together the Villages of Maywood and River Forest walking together from Maywood to River Forest and back again to support equity and opportunity in the arts. Speakers at MFA (9:30) kick off the event and continue at Keystone Park, River Forest (10:45). Meet at 20 N. 5th Ave, Maywood.

Imagine More Pumpkin Patch Movie Premiere

Sunday, Oct. 10, Noon, Lake Theater

Maywood Fine Arts goes to the movies – see MFA dancers, tumblers, actors, musicians, karate students and artists on the big screen. Also showing at ChiTown Drive-In at 6:15 p.m. $10, per person Lake Theater; $25, per vehicle drive in. Tickets/more: maywoodfinearts.org. Lake: 1022 Lake St., Oak Park. ChiTown: 2343 S. Throop St., Chicago.

Storytimes in the Park

Wednesdays, through Oct. 27, 10 to 10:30 a.m., Various Oak Park Parks

The Oak Park Public Library has partnered with the Park District of Oak Park to bring storytimes to neighborhoods. Share books, songs and more. For families with kids 0-5. Bring your own blanket and hand sanitizer. Limited to 20 families with masks.

  • Oct. 6: Fox Park, 624 S. Oak Park Ave.
  • Oct. 13: Lindberg Park, 1151 N. Marion St.
  • Oct. 20: Rehm Park, 515 Garfield St.
  • Oct. 27: Scoville Park, 800 Lake St.

Art for Social Change: Made to Disrupt

Reception, Friday, Oct. 8, 7 to 9 p.m. Exhibit through Thursday, Oct. 28, Oak Park Art League (OPAL) 

See artwork grounded in the desire to create social awareness or change on social issues: voting rights, environmental justice, racial injustice, immigration, identity, hunger and food insecurity, political imbalance and gun violence or other topics. This exhibition aims to highlight work that makes the viewer feel uncomfortable, that encourages deeper reflection and pushes for true social change. Gallery Hours: Tuesdays through Fridays, 1 to 5 p.m., Saturdays, 1 to 4 p.m. 720 Chicago Ave., Oak Park.

Last one – See You Saturday

Saturday, Oct. 9, 10 a.m. to 8 p.m., Downtown Oak Park

Marion Street transforms into an interactive, open street with live music, activities, food and beverages, kids’ entertainment and more. Bring your pets, chairs and yard games. View schedule/more: downtownoakpark.net/event/see-you-Saturday. Marion St. between Lake and North Blvd.

What Locally Grown Honey Can do for You

Wednesday, Oct. 13, 1 p.m., Cheney Mansion

Learn about the health benefits of local honey, from vitamins and iron to other nutrients. Also hear honey facts and myths plus the many uses for honey. Brought by The Garden Club of Oak Park and River Forest. Social time begins at noon. All welcome. The club meets the second Wednesday of each month. More: gcoprf.org/events/club-meetings. 220 N. Euclid Ave., Oak Park.

Benji Hart

Linking Anti-Blackness and Anti-Immigration

Thursday, Oct. 7, 6:30 to 8:30 p.m., Zoom with Pilgrim Congregational Church

Writer and educator Benji Hart will describe how the deportation machines in places like Israel, Mexico and the US share a lineage with the systems that once captured and forced Africans into servitude. Free. Register: pilgrimoakpark.org/events

The Color of Law and Reversing Segregation

Richard Rothstein

Wednesday, Oct. 13, 7 to 8 p.m., Virtually with River Forest Public Library

Author and researcher Richard Rothstein explains the policies that led to racial segregation across America and what can be done to reverse these practices and work towards racial equity. Register: riverforestlibrary.librarymarket.com/events/color-law-and-reversing-segregation

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