Check out this year’s Forest Park Community Guide!

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You may still have time to get over to Saint John’s Church, 305 Circle, to hear this evening’s (Dec. 17) program of Vivaldi’s “Gloria,” which begins at 7 p.m. This is one of the most beautiful and popular pieces of church music.

On Christmas Eve, Dec. 24, there is a family service at 5 p.m. at Saint John’s and a special musical program will begin at 10 p.m. with the traditional candlelight service at 10:30.

On Sunday, Dec. 21 Saint Peter’s Church, Adams and Hannah, will have a guest soloist, Yukie Ota. She is a flutist visiting us from Japan. Ota is studying flute and English here in Chicago.

Is anyone old enough to remember when a parade of young boys would walk around neighborhoods after a big snowfall? They were willing to shovel your walks for a dollar. Well, those young boys may be busy with their video games now, but a bright, ambitious young lady, Deanna McCline, has taken their place. Deanna is a product of the Forest Park Middle School, Proviso East High School and is now a pre-engineering student at Triton. She was out on the street early in the day, shovel on her shoulder. In these days of environmental concern over air quality, those gas-driven snow blowers may soon be put into retirement. The old fashioned shovel will be back on duty and Deanna will be there to use it.

A familiar face every Forest Parker will recognize is Linda Walsh. Congratulations to Linda for safely guiding children across our streets on their way to school for 25 years. Linda never missed a day in all those years!

Remember Ossie Davis? He was born in Harlem in New York on Dec. 18 in 1917. The famous actor was often in films with Ruby Dee. Some of his best friends were Langston Hughes, Richard Wright and W.E.B. DuBois. Ossie died in 1995.

On Dec. 20, 1946, the perennial Christmas favorite, It’s a Wonderful Life, premiered.

On Dec. 20 the young Shoshone Indian woman, Sacagawea, died in 1812. Without her help Lewis and Clark probably never would have found their way across the Northwest. She led the party all the while carrying her newborn son on her back. Sacagawea has been honored as few other women have; mountain peaks, the dollar coin, statues and fountains.

In 1606 the Virginia company that founded Jamestown left London on Dec. 20.

The winter solstice arrives at 7:04 a.m. on Dec. 21 (and you’re sick of winter already?-ha!).

The first crossword puzzle was published Dec. 21, 1913, by a man named Arthur Wagner.

The 21st is National Humbug Day. Each of us becomes entitled to 12 “humbugs” beginning today.

Dec. 21 is the day Phileas Fogg completed his 80 days around the world. He is supposed to have walked into the Reform Club in London and announced “Here I am, gentlemen.” It had taken him 79 days, 23 hours, 59minutes and 59 seconds. He won a bet of 20,000 British pounds.

Dec. 22 marks the beginning of Chanukah.

Giacomo Puccini was born in 1858 in Lucca, Italy.

On Dec. 23 in 1987 the first nonstop flight around the world-without refueling-was made by Jeann Yeager and Dick Rulan. It took 216 hours.

Dec. 18 is the birthday of Sue Stanton and Bill Hopp; on the 19th, Amanda Rychtanek, Tim Flanagan, Irene O’Shea, and Madeleine Garlisch; Dec. 21, Diana Dylewski, Scott Popelka and Kaylee Ross; Dec. 22, Angelina Cote, Jennifer Vince and J.P. Miceli; Dec. 23, Peggy Madddes and Angel D’Souza; the 24th, Daniel Gerger, Vince Cirrintano, Norm Hopp and Bill Kaup, and a special happy birthday to 1-year-old Thalia Becker; on the 25th, Monica Slaeeb and Carol Garling

Have a merry Christmas!