Forty Years Ago

For reason’s undisclosed, Mrs. Claude Walker Jr. took over the column for one issue. Her subject”a new-fangled phenomenon called skateboarding. Take it, Ms. Walker:

“Our children are the proud owners of a new fad rolling across the nation”skateboards. This gimmick, destined to be more popular than hoola hoops, is a simple board about two feet long, mounted on a set of roller skate wheels. They are known also as skate surfs, and are being sold nationwide at a rate of four boards a minute. Price wise, depending on pocketbook and enthusiasm, there are plastic boards available for about $2.00 or motorized models for $49.95.

“Properly propelled, and with a good tailwind, the average skateboard rider can travel 20 mph. Balance is controlled by knee, hip and shoulder coordination, but don’t be fooled by it, easy as it looks. I suggest you don’t try junior’s new toy unless you are the athletic, able-bodied type such as the family group we saw gliding down the Desplaines Ave. underpass.

“Of course, merely gliding along becomes a bit humdrum for some of the youngsters so it is not surprising to see them kneeling on the board coasting backwards, or even”so help me”I actually saw a kid going downhill on a skate board while doing a handstand.”

From the April 1965 issues of the Forest Park Review

Thirty Years Ago

The bigger they come, the nicer they are. This truism applies to Detective Chuck Whelpley, who was profiled in a series titled, “Meet Your Forest Park Police Officers.” At the time, he was serving his 13th year with the force as its youth officer, and 15th year overall. He took his youth service seriously, earning himself a national and international reputation. By 1975 he was in his third term as one of only 15 U.S. and European members of the board of directors on the International Juvenile Officers Association.

A Forest Park native, Whelpley starred as a Proviso East High School football player, went to the U of Miami on scholarship and majored in psychology. As an officer here, he furthered his career by taking many extra law enforcement courses, and was widely recognized as a teacher.

Big guys need fuel, and he was also known as a trencherman of the first order. Young people may not know that most of McDonald’s restaurants had a changing sign that kept a running total of how many “Mickey D” burgers were being sold worldwide. Publisher Bob Haeger reported seeing “Bubba” enter our McDonald’s, then sitting back and watching the numbers spin. Ha! (Per former Lt. Joe Byrnes, Whelpley is happily retired.)

From the March 1975 issues of the Forest Park Review

Twenty Years Ago

This country is in a wine boom. We shared a wine and cheese tip in last week’s column. We’re nothing if not consistent, so here’s more oenological(!) advice: Serving temperature is important. Dry wines such as Sauvignon Blanc and Chardonnay should be taken out of the refrigerator about 20 minutes before serving. These wines need to warm up just a little to taste their flavors. But you don’t want that with a Gewurztraminer or a Riesling”with these you’re trying for fresh”and the chilling accentuates the crispness.”

The MacNeal Health Care Center opened on May 6, of 1985. It was built on Harlem, just north of its intersection with Roosevelt Rd. and on the site of Brown’s Chicken. It was the second such adjunct to the hospital, the first being a facility on Archer Avenue in Chicago.

From the April 1985 issues of the Forest Park Review

Ten Years Ago

Forest Park got lucky, Lotto lucky. And former commissioner Gus Heider got the luckiest. He didn’t win in the millions, but you don’t go around sneezing at $96,850. He said he never played this particular game (Little Lotto) but as an afterthought to making a purchase at Sav-er Groceries, he bought a ticket. It had been four days, yet he said that he still didn’t believe it. He said he did believe how quickly the government claimed its share”31 percent.

Another $23,575 prize had not been claimed, although the winning ticket was sold at 7-Eleven, on the corner of Roosevelt and Desplaines. A woman whose identity had yet to be confirmed, was the winner of $14,400. Lucky vendors who sold the winning tickets took one percent of the winning amounts.

Who Remembers? Flatt and Scruggs … Burns and Allen … Lo and Behold … Click and Clack … Rich Little … Randy Quaid … Paul Rieser … kinescopes … 8-tracks … Paula Poundstone … Roger Miller’s song, “King of the Road” … Butros Butros Galli.

From the Mar./April 1995 issues of the Forest Park Review