Judy Wittenberg (right) receives an award for her years of service to the Oak Park Concert Chorale. Shown with Judy is Paul Lindblad, Music Director of the OPCC, Walther Academy and Saint John Choristers.

The Symphony of Oak Park & River Forest is holding a dress rehearsal at the Arts Center in Oak Park FREE with a donation to the Animal Care League. That’s tonight, Wednesday, April 17 at 7:30 pm. Everyone is sure to love the program: Strauss “Fledermaus”, Rachmaninoff “Rhapsody on a Theme by Paganini” and Beethoven’s 8th Symphony. Soloist is Mio Nakamura.

Poor Josie Fjelsted, after her evening walk last week, Erik unleashed her when they reached their yard. Unbeknownst to Erik, but well beknownst to Josie, a visiting skunk was in the yard. Naturally Josie took off after it and nature took its course. Do not believe all those stories about tomato juice. It is totally useless in deodorizing a dog.

After more than fifty years of managing the Oak Park Concert Chorale, Judy Wittenberg was honored at the April 14th concert. Over the years many Forest Parkers have sung in the chorale and traveled with the chorus to England, Venice, Switzerland, Austria, Germany, France, etc. and have sung in some of the world’s most famous cathedrals including Saint Mark’s, Venice, Cologne Cathedral, Saint Steven’s and Karlskirche in Vienna. Judy kept the bills paid (sometimes with her own money) and kept the singers on their toes. Shown with Judy is Paul Lindblad, Music Director of the OPCC, Walther Academy and Saint John Choristers.

Congratulations to Bob Maroney. He’s going on a one-day whirlwind trip today to DC courtesy of the Honor Flight group. The group takes veterans to the national WWII Memorial in DC and shows them a good time. Bob, age 93, was going to go last year, but a doctor’s visit got in the way. Keeping him out of trouble will be niece Susie Maroney.

There is a Family Garage Sale at the park on Saturday, April 27th to benefit C.A.T.S., a volunteer program with the Oak Park Animal Care League. This organization humanely cares for stray cat colonies in Forest Park The workers and their volunteers capture stray cats, spay or neuter them and release the cats after keeping them warm and dry until they are ready for release. You can be a volunteer or even make a tax deductible donation to the cause. Call Terri Woods at 708.9432.5436 for more information or visit http://catsforestpark.blogspot.com. Donations to the Garage Sale are most welcome. So if you’re finished spring cleaning, don’t throw away any usable stuff, donate it to the sale.

Saint John Church and Walther Academy will sponsor 10 fun filled days of summer camp Mondays through Fridays July 29th – August 9th , 8 a.m. -6 p.m. for youths 3rd through 8th grade. Fun and education will fill their days as they go swimming, bowling, learn to read music, sing in a chorus, learn vocal technique, learn stage craft and improve self-awareness. The $200 cost includes, breakfast and snacks and an informal concert/demonstration on the evening of August 9th.

Special happy birthday wishes to Bob Farrow at Schauer Hardware Also on the birthday list for this week are Parker Ryan Wojtas, Shawn Miller, Grace Ahern, Pricilla Bruce, Urtan Romani, Lisa Grimes, Lorraine Sansone, Evelyn Wirkowski, Frank Nee, Michael Accetura, Ben Waldron, McKenna Mintz, Rihannosti Ulman, Ruth Meyer, Regan Doolin. Happy anniversasry to Sue and Rich Bothie, Nicole and Drew Carter, and the Jeff Oswalts.

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...