Archive for July, 2015

Buena Park Open Day celebrated its third-annual neighborhood festival with an “At Home in the City” theme. The festival highlighted why our neighborhood motto is “Good Living by the Lake.”

The festival’s hub was at the Smart Love House at Clarendon and Buena where visitors signed up for architectural tours, participated in family friendly activities, shopped the new Bazaar on Buena, listened to live music and took a break at the pop-up café.

“We are extremely satisfied with this year’s festival,” said Buena Park Neighbors President Lisa von Drehle, “because we think it represents all the best that our neighborhood has to offer. Plus, there was something for everyone from urban aficionado, architectural maven, families looking for a special outing, or people like us who just want to have some fun on a summer afternoon.”

Many thanks to our generous sponsors who make BPOD possible: Thorek Hospital, SSA34, Reside Living and the Chicago Cubs.

For more photos of the event click here.


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Smart Love Corner: Parenting Q&A

All the questions and answers come directly from Smart Love Solutions in Early Childhood-A Handbook for Parents, Teachers and Caregivers by Drs. Martha Heineman Pieper and William J. Pieper.

Q: There is an increasing trend for starting three-year-olds in preschool. Is it necessary? Are there any educational gains? Will my daughter be behind if she waits another year? Thanks.

A: The purpose of preschool is not to teach your child any particular content, such as colors or numbers, but to introduce her to the school setting and show her that it can be enjoyable. If your three-year-old likes to play with other children, uses the potty and is comfortable separating from you for a few hours, she is probably ready for a good preschool. She will be able to enjoy it and have a positive first school experience. On the other hand if she tends to squabble over toys, isn’t potty trained or has difficulty separating from you, there is no reason to put her in a school situation. Doing so may leave her convinced that school is frightening, painful or otherwise unpleasant. There is every reason to wait a year until she is ready.

If you conclude that your child is ready for preschool, but you are a stay-at-home parent who wants another year to enjoy her full-time, do not worry about keeping her home. Missing the first year of preschool will have no educational significance for her and she will have the deep pleasure of spending her days with a parent who loves being with her. Not much is at stake either way, as long as you do not send your daughter to school before she is ready. If you do enroll her, choose a preschool where the director and staff understand that its most important job is to help children feel comfortable at school rather than to socialize them or teach them anything in particular.

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Chicago, IL, June 20, 2015. If it is summer in Chicago, then one thing is for certain: It is also neighborhood festival season. This year, Buena Park Open Day celebrates its third-annual neighborhood festival July 19, from noon to 5 pm. With an “At Home in the City” theme, the festival highlights why the neighborhood motto is “Good Living by the Lake.” Long considered a hidden gem at the south end of Uptown bordering the park and Lake Michigan, Buena Park boasts a vibrant and diverse cultural scene, architectural masterpieces, a laid-back vibe, and that all-important X factor: Longtime residents who are eager to share their pocket of the city with the rest of Chicago.

The festival’s hub will be at the Smart Love House, a neighborhood landmark located at Clarendon and Buena. That’s where people can sign up for architectural tours, participate in family friendly activities, shop the new Bazaar on Buena, listen to live music or take a break at the pop-up café.

“We are extremely excited about this year’s festival,” says organizer Lisa von Drehle, “because we think it represents all the best our neighborhood has to offer. Plus, there is something for everyone—from urban aficionado, architectural maven, families looking for a special outing, or people like us who just want to have some fun on a summer afternoon.”

Programming and Events

  • Bazaar on Buena: Featuring Etsy quality arts and crafts, plus a neighborhood rummage sale
  • Sidewalk tours of the architect George Maher’s historic homes on Hutchison St. These 30-minute tours focus on the exteriors of this Prairie School architect who some consider to be as influential in the Midwest as Frank Lloyd Wright. Tours are every half hour between 12:30 pm and 4pm.
  • Open house and tours of St. Mary of the Lake Church, 4200 N. Sheridan Rd. This nearly 100-year-old church, designed by Chicagoan Henry J. Schlacks in the Italian Renaissance style, features Carrera marble work from the same quarries used by Michelangelo. Tours at 2:15 pm and 3:15 pm.
  • A Pop-up Café—fueled by a bevy fabulous food trucks, including Cupcakes for Courage, Husky Hogs and Meatloaf-a-Go-Go located at Clarendon and Hutchinson Streets.
  • Family fun all day long: Exotic animals, bouncy house, games, sing-alongs, face painting, police horses, a visit from a fire engine, story time with the Alderman, hula hoop fiesta and more.
  • Music all day by the Wolf Street Bloodhounds, a popular local bluegrass/rock band
  • Exhibits and activities showcasing neighborhood organizations and businesses, including the always popular Gingko Gardens, an organic community garden with a mission to provide fresh produce to Uptown organizations that serve low-income and homeless people.

Know Before You Go

  • Festival entrance is located at the corner of Clarendon and Buena at the Smart Love House.
  • $5 suggested donation includes program. Children under age 12 are free.
  • Public transportation: Take the #36, 151 or 146 bus to Buena (4200 north between Irving Park and Montrose). By El, take the Red Line to the Sheridan stop, which is just 4 short blocks away from the festival entrance at Buena and Clarendon.

For more information: Contact Festival Coordinator and Buena Park Neighbors President Lisa Von Drehle.

The third annual Buena Park Open Day has been generously funded by neighborhood businesses, Thorek Hospital, SSA34, reside living and the Chicago Cubs.

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