Garfield crossing guard Cathy Thompson won't let her wounded arm keep her from helping kids cross the street.JACKIE SCHULZ/Contributor

Kids (and parents) returning to Garfield School were shocked and saddened to see Crossing Guard Cathy Thompson, stop sign in hand, right arm in a sling. Here’s a version of the story: One hot July day Cathy felt a little tired and leaned over. That’s all. She leaned too far, went down and broke her right elbow. Fortunately, if anything can be fortunate about breaking your elbow, it was her right arm and Cathy is left handed. But she’s still wielding that sign and waving at passersby. The cast should be off shortly and the rigors of therapy begun. Good luck, Cathy.

Here’s to a happy future to newlyweds Matthew Stefl and Abigail Kroc. The Stefls were married last Saturday, Aug. 24 and held a reception after the ceremony at Crystal Sky. Matt is following in his father’s footsteps and is a plumbing apprentice. Abigail is a chemist working in Morton Grove.

If you think you’ll miss the traditional old Forest Park Oktoberfest usually held this time of year, the Harlem Men’s and Women’s German-American Choir enthusiastically invite you to attend the 93rd Anniversary Celebration of the German-American Fest September 6, 7 and 8. This hearty celebration will be held at Lincoln Avenue and Irving Park Friday from 5-11 p.m., Saturday noon-11 p.m. and Sunday, noon-10 p.m. On Sunday there will be a German Mass at Saint Benedict’s Church, 2215 W. Irving Park. The 48th annual Steuben Parade on Saturday at 2 p.m. is a famous old Chicago tradition sponsored by the United German American Societies of greater Chicago. Special guests will be Mayor Rahm Emanuel, Alderman Ameya Pawar and the Lincoln Square Chamber of Commerce Good food, dancing, wine, entertainment and German Gemutlichkeit will be found under two tents at Lincoln & Leland. Your special invitation comes from Zeno and Georgette Jacquat.

And if you’re staying closer to home, hit the Park District’s Fall Fest, Saturday, Sept. 7. There will be brats, hamburgers, craft beers and live music at the park. Not quite an Oktoberfest, but fun nonetheless.

Kate Crawford at the Junction Diner wants you to know the choo-choo restaurant is trying to help increase collections for the Forest Park Food Pantry by being a drop off location. The restaurant will give a coupon to anyone dropping off at least two nonperishable food items. Get your coupons now through the end of September.

Donna Fabbrini McKune and her son Paul McKune have returned from a life changing vacation experience. They traveled the route of Lewis and Clark on the lower Mississippi and the Lolo Trail in the Bitterroot Mountains. The group of 35 people approximated the journey of the original corps that traveled from St. Charles, Mo. to the mouth of the Columbia River near Astoria, Ore. You remember this was a mission initiated by President Thomas Jefferson. The outstanding leader of this year’s group was Clay Jenkinson who brought the adventure to life in an unforgettable way. Donna sent some pictures, one taken from the place where Lewis and Clark smoked a peace pipe with the Nez Perce Indians, according to custom. Mr. Jenkinson brought the experience back to life in a special way. Donna is a Forest Park lady, son Paul now lives in Virginia Beach, Virginia. Donna invites everyone who wants to learn more about Lewis and Clark to go to

Happy birthday to Colleen and Tiffany Cassiani, Rosalie Koldan, Donna Chan, Len Grappa, Milady Gerger, Bethany Hawkins, Brandi Mintz, Paul Richards, Michelle Becker Baum, John Connor Trage, Jessica Huebner, Pat Petrey, Ron Apilado, Steve Knaack, Colon Tomkins, Patti Mullin, John Tricoci, Sarah Goetz, Lois Bugajsky, Tim Scheiwe, Jamie Carr, Eric Battersby, Connor Hoehne, Sheila O’Shea, Dan Novak and Rico Daylo. Happy anniversary to Bill and Maureen Flagg, Sam and Jamie Alonzo, Melissa and Anthony Tureck.

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...