Good news for all of us! The Hollywood screen writers are going on strike! Now you can go to the library and pick up a few good books and read them instead of wasting your life in front of that screen. It’s your life. So many books, so little time.

Congratulations to Jodi Gianakopoulos who accepted the Accessibility Award for her leadership in encouraging businesses to provide a handicap accessible shop. This award was presented at the Liberty Awards dinner from Progress Center of Illinois located here on Madison Street. Jodi and her husband Peter Gianakopoulos operate (with help from Titus a.k.a “Sugar Bear”) The Old School Records at the corner of Beloit and Madison streets.

In recognition of Veterans’ Day, here’s a bit of Forest Park history. For as many years as anyone can remember, the VFW and the American Legion have placed memorial wreaths at various locations around town on Veterans’ Day. Also, for many years these wreaths were made of lovely Magnolia leaves, and were created by Quitsch Florist. Many years ago, a Hollywood producer happened to see one of these wreaths on a fire truck and asked where they came from. He was so impressed he commissioned Quitsch to create all the flowers that were used in the movie “Backdraft.” Sad note: Magnolia leaves are no longer available in this part of the country.

Newcomers Jennifer and Bo Brobst were the champion chili makers topping all 12 entrants in the fourth annual Halloween block party for the 600 block of Thomas Avenue. Those people will have freezers full of chili to last till Christmas. The McDonnells were last year’s champs so I guess they couldn’t win two years in a row. The party was a great success. One of the items on the kids’ scavenger hunt list was a signature of the mayor or a commissioner. Luckily for all the kids, Commissioner Marty Tellalian responded to the block party invitation and he gave each kid his autograph. He even entered the chili competition and came in as a runner up.

Our resident clothing designer, Heather Byrnes was really busy this Halloween. She dressed herself as the “Queen of Hearts” and her nephew, Jack Pingel as “Kool-Aid Man.” Heather won first place at Doc Ryan’s for her efforts.

Compliments to the trick-or-treaters this year. The costumes were the best ever and the kids were very well behaved, even said “thank you.”

Apologies to the Urbans. Their front yard was so scary it even frightened my dog and I. A swaying, black robed skeleton holding a lit lantern and making scary sounds stood in the doorway of a haunted house. I rang their doorbell about 9 p.m. to tell them about our scare, but they had already gone to bed. Sorry, Urbans.

Happy birthday this week to Renee VanZant, Lyford Arey and Richard Cotton. Also, happy anniversary to Rosalie and Sam Corso, who celebrate on Nov. 8; on Nov. 9, Emily Johnson, Amy Brod; the 10th, Mark Conway, Andy Thiesse, Anita D’Souza, Virginia Rossi; Nov. 11, Max Trage, Bradley Drane; the 12th, happy anniversary to Gloria and Steve Backman and happy birthday to Jane Lentini, Sandy Riley, Ellie Drane, Danielle Sullivan, Louise Douglas; on the 13th, Derek Miranda, Scott McAdam, Honor Millette, Paula Diverde,; Nov. 14, Jennifer Mendenhall, Jacqueline Neubeiser, Eric Bothie, Michael Harnett.

This just in … mark your calendar for Dec. 2, 2 p.m. The Friends of the River Forest Library will host a barbershop quartet the “Chordmasters.” It will be a seasonal program with audience participation in the holiday music. Bring your friends, refreshments will be served.