'Day in Our Village' festival celebrates 40 years in Oak Park

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By Anna Lothson

Staff Reporter

It's a tradition four decades in the making and this year it's back in the newly renovated Scoville Park.

The 40th annual A Day in Our Village festival that brings out thousands of people and about every organization and agency in town will be held this Sunday, June 2, from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.

With the help of a dedicated bunch of volunteers, village staff coordination, and the friendly faces of those running the organizations and businesses in town, the Oak Park tradition brings out the best of what the village offers.

Day in Our Village hasn't always been so popular, as it was canceled due to lack of volunteers in 1996, but the next year people rallied to bring it back. Since then, the fest has grown and continues to be one of the most well attended events of the year. Guests can expect nearly 200 vendors and tents this year.

This year's event won't be much different from the rest as there will be musical entertainment, food from local vendors and hundreds of local businesses and organizations. This year, however, patrons get the benefit of walking across freshly planted sod at Scoville Park and enjoying the other new renovations to the park at Lake Street and Oak Park Avenue.

On Saturday, a day ahead of A Day in Our Village, residents can take part in an official Scoville Park ribbon cutting and view the new amenities at the park, which include the Peace Plaza around the World War I Monument, along with a renovated playground, tennis courts and entrances. The event takes place at 10 a.m.

Day in Our Village isn't about getting people to buy goods as happens at other village gatherings, instead it's about residents learning about government agencies, social services, schools, religious organizations and community-minded businesses in Oak Park. While Scoville features informational-based booths, Rehm Park, East Avenue and Garfield, will have activities for kids.

The festival started in the early days of Oak Park's Open Housing era as a celebration of diversity in the village. The goal is to provide a unique festival where all residents can learn about the people and groups that make the town what it is today.

Email: anna@oakpark.com Twitter: @AnnaLothson

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Laurie from Oak Park  

Posted: June 2nd, 2013 3:15 PM

MR, Perhaps you should calm down and think before you comment. Of course the "vendors" Ms. Lothson refers to will be selling things. That's why they are called "vendors." What she means is that this isn't a fundraiser for a specific cause, like the annual library book sale. Perhaps we OPers wouldn't seem so hypocritical if you listened and took what was said in context.

Bridgett from Oak Park  

Posted: June 2nd, 2013 12:36 PM

MR, I think you misinterpreted the word "village" in that sentence. Unlike other OAK PARK village events, ie: the Farmers Market or DTOP Thursday Nights Out or the Arts Festival, this event, A Day In Our Village, is about giving information, rather than selling goods and services.


Posted: June 2nd, 2013 12:07 PM

"Day in Our Village isn't about getting people to buy goods as happens at other village gatherings..." So this means all businesses will be closed and nothing will be bought or sold? This is why I am moving out of Oak Park: OPers take any opportunity to compare OP to other places in an attempt to make OP seem better than anywhere else. Very neighborly of you to state how superior Oak Park is to other villages. There seems to be an unusually high percentage of elitists and hypocrites here!

Chinny from oak park  

Posted: May 31st, 2013 12:46 PM

The Day festival is always exciting! Hats off to the festival committee and volunteers as well as Village staff who do this huge undertaking each year. The festival is one of the biggest happenings in oak park and really shows we have a lot of things going on!

mikeandmolly@juno.com from Oak Park   

Posted: May 31st, 2013 10:28 AM

Your quote that this year wont be that different is just Not True! Every DIOV over the past 40 years is different and exciting! We will have some new top notch bands and great food, new businesses and groups to explore in the newly designed park! Come on out and see for yourself!

June from Oak Park  

Posted: May 29th, 2013 9:18 AM

I can't wait. I always have fun volunteering and enjoying all of the activities--there's something for everyone.

Suzanne Vestuto from Oak Park  

Posted: May 29th, 2013 7:39 AM

Thanks so much to the energy, time & talents of the Volunteer Committee & liaisons from the VOP, Park District, Township, etc. that produce A DAY for all current, prospective & past OPers! Do come & experience all these organizations that this community has for you in which to become involved as a volunteer, participant or customer. Learn more about our diverse & inclusive village! I went to the first DAY in my second year here & had a blast exploring everything with my friends! Come out!!!

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