Ella Petersen | Courtesy Courtesy Rina Bongsu-Petersen

The pre-school students at Garfield were celebrating the end of the year with a great picnic at the little park at Adams and Thomas, and a good time was had by all, to quote an old cliché. Head teacher Jane Catezone and her assistants, Julie Huebner Brown and Michael Yarnell, were also enjoying the beautiful day and all the fun park activities provided. 

That stretch of long summer days seems endless at age 5, 6 and 7. But before boredom sets in, how about choosing a project to work on, such as piano, cello, viola or violin lessons? A few hours at that age can turn into a lifetime of joy, friendship and a feeling of accomplishment, not to mention becoming familiar with the world’s great music. 

Ella Petersen studies at the Gasse School of Music, right here in Forest Park on Polk Street. She recently won a competition at Daley Plaza and found herself in possession of two trophies, one in violin, one for piano. Sarah Gasse is Hannah’s proud violin teacher; Hulya Alpakin-Luethi, her piano teacher. At a different competition, Gasse student cellist Oscar Quinn-Pasin received an award for his accomplishments on the cello. 

Or you could even write your own music, like Chuck Alvarado. Congratulations to Chuck, who finally saw his Magnum Opus performed (concert version) in the Nardini Library at East Leyden High School. Chuck has been working on this musical, High Ed, for several years. It is a stunning work and we hope to see it performed on stage soon. His colleagues at East Leyden, several friends and neighbors, as well as his mother were on hand to celebrate with Chuck. Of course Little Miss Journey Alvarado was there. 

Birthdays go on in spite of everything. This week it’s birthday time for Christy Cesario, Marilyn Lentini, Carter Leonard, Janeen Dunst, Danuiari Dejuiera, Patricia Gotier, Stella Kovarek, Micholas Faber Ross, Nancy Lovell, Angelina Seveda, Charlotte Vaccaro, Joan Jordan, Ken Trainor, Gloria Hansberry, Cindy Wood, Janine Boy, Hailey Watson, Rev. Mark Jargstorf, Robert Gerger, Jacob Koehne, Matt O’Shea, and Anne Scafidi

Happy anniversary to Al and Jenny Juozsaitis, Ruth and Jerry Belinsky, Pat Williams and Howard Hansen, and Diane and Colin Chin.

 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.

Jackie Schulz

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...