Check out this year’s Forest Park Community Guide!

Online edition –>

So, the bench. It’s at 7521 Jackson Blvd. and has earned 4.3 out of 5 stars on Google, reviewed by visitors who, for the most part, enjoyed their experience. One reviewer referred to it as “The single most profound location in our known universe.” Another said, “My god, when I sat on this bench, it was like heaven.”

I wouldn’t have known about this bench if I hadn’t participated in the village-wide scavenger hunt, co-sponsored by the Forest Park Historical Society and the Forest Park Public Library. Originally scheduled to run from Aug. 1 to 8, the date has been extended until Aug. 16, so there’s still time to get in on discovering historical landmarks in town, including less historical ones, like the bench, and more famous ones, like the Haymarket Martyrs’ Monument.

The clues rhyme and will take you from churches to ice sculptures, from a bike path to a movie-theater-turned-ice-cream-parlor. You’ll learn about outdoor murals, a hardware store, and the oldest house in town. It’s fun. It’s funny. It’s a great way to get to know Forest Park.

And you’ll have the opportunity to sit on the bench described by one visitor as such a great bench that “other benches should take notes.”

Those interested in participating in the scavenger hunt — it’s free! — can pick up a clue booklet from the Forest Park Public Library, 7555 Jackson Blvd., during open hours. Or you can download a brochure from forestparkhistory.org.