Check out this year’s Forest Park Community Guide!

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Signs of spring abound in Forest Park, and most of them are encouraging.

For a town that reportedly has declining home values, there’s a healthy level of rehabbing and new home construction in progress.

More Forest Parkers seem to be going green, cutting grass with those old-fangled push mowers.

Homeowners with shaded lawns are making the tough choice between planting grass seed and doing the comb-over, or putting down sod to cover the mud with a toupee.

The red bricking of crosswalks on Madison Street should raise the awareness of drivers and lower the heart rates of pedestrians trying to get across.

Destruction of the Nutbush and Arrow Liquors proves that nothing lasts forever – not even bars and liquor stores.

Punks with baggy pants and no belts are once again walking down the middle of the street, defying motorists. I saw one of them spin around and walk right into a parked car – made my day.

Holes are appearing among the storefronts on Madison Street, in the pavement of our streets and the garden hose springs new ones every year.

The park has undergone an extreme makeover and new trees are being planted to commemorate a century of learning at Field-Stevenson Elementary School and the memory of Barb Thies.

The park at 16th and Circle is also getting a facelift. For the first time in history, an actual baseball diamond is taking shape.

Uniformed Little Leaguers look sharp and ready to play, while their managers perform the annual rite of spring, calling coaches from sodden fields to re-schedule rainouts.

Thanks to the dog, our backyard has the 40 shades of green they brag about in Ireland.

Trees are blossoming, puddles are widening and birds have returned to nest inside my siding.

Grills are being fired up, bike tires are getting pumped up and TVs are finally being turned off.

Thanks to the return of sunshine, some of us are sprucing up our ghost-like appearance with a little third-degree burn.

Cars are clean again, sidewalks are being swept and some extremists are even washing windows.

At Forest Home Cemetery, anarchists embraced the spring with a celebration at the Haymarket monument, gypsies feasted at one of their sepulchers and mourners made the pilgrimage to place fresh flowers.

Restaurants have opened up their sidewalk seating, park benches are being used again and lounging on lawn chairs has replaced collapsing on sofas.

Some of us are sore from yard work and playing sports. But it’s that good kind of springtime soreness that reminds us that hey, the limbs still work.