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Lopez’s approach is proactive

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By Kathy Headley

Your correspondent in Chicago Lawn and Marquette Manor

6610 S. Francisco • (773) 776-7778

Last week we learned of Ald. David Moore’s intentions to take care of the sections within the current 17th Ward boundaries that will soon become a part of the 15th Ward. Unfortunately, it was after the deadline of last week’s paper that 15th Ward Ald. Raymond Lopez announced he would also be holding two meetings with the community same last Friday.

The purpose of the meetings was to extend a welcome to all residents in the new redistricted area and hear what is important to them. Lopez’s Constituent Services Director Robert Martinez told the group gathered on Friday that theirs is a proactive office.

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Kathy Headley

They have already been going out to survey the new blocks coming into the 15th Ward. Indeed, letters have already gone out to homeowners–letting them know violations will be addressed, whether it be potholes, illegally parked cars or a host of other services demanding improvement. Martinez went on to say that the alderman dedicates a month to each section of the ward. When that is completed, they start over. It seems like “proactive” is the certainly the best way to describe the alderman’s approach.

Recently we talked about Brother Chuck Fitzsimmons starting an open gym at the former St. Clare of Montefalco School. I met up with Brother Chuck last week and asked him how it is progressing.

“Adolescents are coming in a pretty steady stream from around the neighborhood,” he said. “We’ve been pretty full and averaging about 20 young folks every session. My goal is for this to be the center of activities, and so far it appears to be working.”

Brother Chuck’s open gym takes place on Tuesdays from 6 to 8 p.m. and Saturdays beginning at 9 a.m. Enter Door #8 off the parking lot at 55th and Talman.

Remember, Tuesday is dinner at Marquette Park hosted by Hope Church of LaGrange. I stopped in the fieldhouse last Tuesday to see how it was going. The aroma greeted me as I approached from the parking lot. On the menu was fruit salad, green salad, BBQ chicken, roasted potatoes, broccoli and a huge assortment of desserts.

All the food is prepared by Pastor Ben and his crew. Stop by the fieldhouse on Tuesday. Dinner is served from 6 to 7 p.m.

Fridays are Chicago Lawn Field Day at Marquette Park. Centered at 68th and California, from 5 to 8 p.m., Summer Kickback 22 will feature food, drinks, sports, an obstacle course and lawn games.

This Saturday, Aug. 13, the Chicago Lawn Branch Library, 6120 S. Kedzie, will be hosting a resource fair from noon to 3 p.m. Celebrate the end of the summer/vacation time while receiving information from local organizations, getting a COVID-19 test, applying for a library card and have some fun with crafts, games, music, food and dancers.

Nativity BVM Parish will celebrate its 95th anniversary on Sunday, Sept. 8, beginning with an anniversary Mass celebrated at 11 a.m. by Bishop Rimantas Norvila and followed by a special banquet in the parish hall. If you would like to share your good wishes, commemorative ads are now available for purchase in the Nativity ad book. For more information, call the rectory at (773) 776-4600.

The St. Bede School class of 1972 is holding a reunion on Saturday, Sept 24, from 6:30 to 11 p.m. at the Oak Lawn Elks Club, 10720 S. Central. Price is $40 per person. For reservations and payment options, visit the Facebook page – Unofficial Bogan Reunion.

Football Mania is back at St. Thomas More. The $20 donation gives you a chance to win one of 18 prize for all 8 weeks of the professional football season. There are also two grand prizes at the end of the season. A Football Mania card provides you three teams for that week, and prizes are won based on the total points your team scored. You can check your tickets weekly at charitymania.com. Tickets are available after all weekend Masses and at the rectory or purchase tickets online at charitymania.com.

Now going back to the 1960s, we visited Joe’s Hobby Shop last week. Today on our trip back, we were planning on stopping at a special summer place just west of Joe’s for a treat. Pat P. was the first to think of Tastee-Freez, and she tells us that location had the best milk shakes. Better than 44th and California or 58th and Pulaski, she says. Before we leave 59th Street, let’s go down to the corner on California and pick up a hamburger first. Where do you suppose we are getting that burger?

Lastly, I am guessing everyone has read of the closing of the much-loved Mabenka Restaurant this week. The sad news was reported in last week’s Greater Southwest News-Herald, in Bob Bong’s Comings & Goings column. Pat P. heard that at one time there was dancing at Mabenka one night a week. Anyone remember going there to enjoy a night of dancing?

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