Congratulations to Laureen Thornton, recipient of the Kiwanis Ed O’Shea award for the year 2010. 

Laureen is the hard working, uncomplaining keeper of the books for the Kiwanis for more years than anyone can remember. Unfortunately, she has been healing slower than everyone hoped so the award had to be presented to her in the hospital by her longtime friend, Nancy Bower. We’d like to show a photo of Laureen accepting this award, but right now she’s not looking her best.

Biggest news of the week was the dynamic, joyful, wedding of our dazzling Erika Goodman to her equally dazzling Jonathan Osborn. Among the honored guests was Erika’s second grade teacher at Garfield, Alice Slapinskus. Erika has always been a star attraction everywhere in her young life and her wedding was certainly no exception. The minister who officiated at the marriage was Forest Parker, Elliott Wimbush, pastor of the Maywood Congregational Church 5th Avenue at Erie. This is a lovely church with beautiful windows, ceiling and many other charming features. I would encourage anyone to attend the 11 a.m. Sunday service. The Rev. Wimbush will make you feel welcome. It’s a church with a long and fascinating history. A lively, unique reception at the 19th Century Club followed the wedding.

Congratulations to Colleen Nee who is now manager of the Fannie May Shop on Lake Street, next door to the Lake Theatre. The new Fannie May is a candy and ice cream store, Colleen has had experience with both delicacies.

The new crossing guard on Harvard, just outside of Ed’s Way is Vicki Whittney. Vicki was formerly with the Board of Trade where she worked at A.J. Edwards Vicki is shown with her longtime friend Debbie Montage.

After six frustrating months of trying to retrieve the phone number I’d had for 60 years, the number is once again mine. I’ve missed out on reunions, announcements, deaths of old friends, neighbors, relatives and other events. Pleading with Jon Yates at the Tribune (phone, email and letter), the FCC and more than 100 hours on the phone with AT&T, Virgin Mobile, all to no avail. I began to think I was soundproof and invisible. It was affecting my mental and physical health, not funny. Thanks to a young man at Verizon, Chris Wiebler, it seems to have been straightened out. If you have something for this column you can call my old, old number, 708.366.4685, or cell, 712.9823.

One such important event which went unannounced is the news is that our prize winning painter, Marge Zwadlo is now a three-time award winner in the Oak Park Art League’s annual art show. Congratulations to Marge. 

Happy birthday this week to Charlotte Lavnick, Chloe Hillis, Annette Stetler, Rich Bisluk, Cory Fink, Marjorie Beyer, Ryan Neff, Toni Iannantuoni, Helen Dvorak, Pat Uphughes, Mary Sullivan, Karen Woods, Spencer Brooks, Jessica Dodge, Sam Bland, Pete Gianakopoulis, Alina Uphughes, Kevin Massoth, Sean Thiesse, Michael Fabre, Robyn Popelka, Meredith Dorneker, Sharon O’Shea, A.J. Turek and happy anniversary to Kathy and Jim Thompson, Mary and Pete Brown, Tom and Hazel Esposito.

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 of Chicago in a great neighborhood when it was a great time to be young.