It’s getting closer, the 15th anniversary of Centuries & Sleuths November 6th, Sunday from 1 till 5 p.m. Several local authors will be on hand to discuss their works and just schmooze with you. On Friday and Saturday November 4 and 5 Meeting of Minds will feature a discussion of journalism’s responsibility to the commonwealth. Ben Franklin, Ida B. Wells, Nelly Bly and moderator Edward R. Murrow will give us their views on this important topic.

Later on in the year, December 9 at 7 p.m. to be exact, Joan Biskupic, author of the latest biography of Sandra Day O’Connor, will be at the bookstore to tell about and sign copies of this very readable biography. It reads like a novel more than a dry account of someone’s life. You’ll like it, I’m sure.

Quitsch Flowers offered a class in flower arranging for Sweetest Day. Anne Scaffiti, Katie Urban and Paula Myers took advantage of the offering. This novelty arrangement was a strawberry soda topped with white carnation whipped cream and crowned with a red rosebud cherry. For Thanksgiving the special arrangement is still under consideration. It will probably be either a cornucopia or a flower turkey. Watch this space. Shown with the flower soda are Dixie Quitsch, Nedra Wentland and visiting dog, Lucky, who loves everybody and everything.

Paula Myers and Katie Urban did all the flower arrangements for their parents’ 50th wedding anniversary dinner at White Fence Farm. Greg and Grace Schwarz were married 50 years on October 2nd.

Word came in just after deadline last week so we couldn’t get much in the paper about the death of Gwen Byars who was a formidable force in town for many years. She was a very bright lady and an independent thinker. No cliches or follow the crowd thinking for Gwen. Her kids grew up in town and attended our schools and Proviso East. The Byars kids were Dick, Carol and Janet, Gwen’s grandchildren are Eric Battersby, Kenny Oliver, Sherry and Sue Byars. We’ll long remember the Byars family. For many years four generations of them lived in the building at Adams & Beloit (in separate apartments, naturally).We are deeply saddened at Gwen’s death.

Another last minute word was of Pat Vastine’s death. Pat was a teacher in our schools for 46 years and a faithful member of St. Bernardine’s Church. Pat also served on the library board during its golden years. She, too has left her mark on our village.

Here’s David Formanski son of Peggy Woods and stepson of Garry Curran. David completed his first Chicago Marathon on September 9 2005!! His finishing time was 3 hours and 57 minutes!! David’s next running adventure will be in Las Vegas in December of this year. Congratulations, David! We are impressed!

Congratulations to newlyweds Katie Hull and Michael Redmond who are to be married at Ascension Church on October 22nd. Katie is the daughter of Dan & Mary Hull of Brookfield; Michael’s mother is Linda Chapman of Monticello, Iowa. Michael is the guitar player with Off Broadway and his day job is with Harris Teller in Chicago. They’re not going to take a honeymoon until next year but we all hope they’ll still be living in Forest Park after their wedding.

On October 20 Joe Byrnes has a birthday also Caitlin Gillian, Phil Abruzzino, and Peter Wojtas; On October 21 happy birthday to Jonathan Kuehl and Ted Hosty; October 22; Rebecca Jargstorf and,Michael Sansone and a happy anniversary to Lou and Rich Cirrintano; on October 23 it’s happy birthday to Noreen Carr,Elizabeth Schiffman,Mark Ross, Michael Rudolf, Jesse Sosa, Angelina Cote and Gary Stetler; on the 24th birthday wishes go to Irene Cosgrove, Anil D’Souza, Frank Anselmo and happy anniversary to Brent and Yvonne Marler; on October 25th happy birthday to Hannah Connelly and happy anniversary to Austin & Terry D’;Souza; October 26 is the birthday of Jamie Stetler, Samantha Zaverdas, sDick Byars and one year old Josie Becker.

That’s about it for this week. Thanks for taking the time to read this. Remember the special library meeting the mayor has called for Tuesday, October 25th at 7 p.m. in the Austin meeting room. Chop a bun.

Jackie is a former Chicago and Elmwood Park schoolteacher with an undying love for music, friendly pets and a host of life's other treasures too numerous to list. She was born on the far southwest side...