Kathy Headley

Kathy Headley

Here’s to you, Bridget, on St. Patrick’s Day

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By Kathy Headley

Your correspondent in Chicago Lawn and Marquette Manor

6610 S. Francisco • (773) 776-7778

Happy St. Patrick’s Day! I began celebrating earlier this week with my good friend, and St. Rita Grammar School/Maria High School grad Mary Lou Barrett. You just can’t celebrate too often.

Throughout our years living here on Francisco, my friend and neighbor, Bridget Ferritter, who passed away last year, taught me a lot about Irish folklore and music as she shared stories about her homeland. She usually came over to share the traditional corned beef dinner with my family for St. Pat’s. This week, there will be a lot of Irish music playing on Francisco, thanks to the vast collection Bridget gifted me over the years. As we begin our family celebration, you can bet we will be raising our glass to Bridget.

Today, Friday, March 17, is the official St. Patrick’s Day celebration with D. J. Chico at the Southwest Regional Senior Center, 6117 S. Kedzie, beginning at 10 a.m. Make sure to wear green for this one!

kathyheadley2021

Kathy Headley

This Saturday, March 18, the Legion of Mary Chicago Senatus Acies 2023 will take place in Nativity BVM Church. Rosary begins at 12:30 p.m., followed by individual and collective Marian Consecration, then closing with benediction. Light refreshments will be served afterward. For more information, contact Mark at (312) 934-1349.

The annual St. Joseph’s Day table at St. Thomas More, 2825 W. 81st St., will be held this Sunday, March 19, in Donlan Hall after the 10 a.m. Mass.

On Sunday, March 19, Community Cinema brings the 2022 Columbia Pictures movie The Woman King to the Chicago Lawn Branch Library, 6120 S. Kedzie. The film begins at 2 p.m.

Over at St. Adrian, 7200 S. Washtenaw, during the Lenten season, Lauds prayer is held Monday through Friday at 5:30 a.m. in St. Adrian Church, 7200 S. Washtenaw. Every Friday, Stations of the Cross begins at 7 p.m.

Coming up on Monday, March 20, our Southwest Regional Senior Center celebrates the first day of spring with coffee and treats at 10 a.m. Then on Wednesday, March 22, the Center will be having an Earth Day Celebration, also beginning at 10 a.m.

Welcome to Archbishop Lionginas Virbalas, who arrives here this week during his visits to the Lithuanian communities in the United States. He will be coming to Nativity BVM on Saturday, March 25, for recollections at 3 p.m. and Mass at 4 p.m. Then on Sunday, March 26, he will celebrate the 11 a.m. Mass followed by a dinner in the parish hall. For more information, call the rectory at (773) 776-4600.

The Sand Ridge Nature Center and Forest Preserve District of Cook County will be holding an open music jam next Saturday, March 25, at the Dan Ryan Woods Pavilion, corner of 87th and Western, at 11 a.m. Bring your instrument and create music with the community. All instruments and music types are welcome.

Every year St. Rita of Cascia Parish offers Catholics who were not married in the Church, the opportunity to take part in a Community Wedding. This event is for those living in a free union or perhaps only married civilly. The parish will be offering formation and preparation for the next Community Wedding, which will be held on Saturday, Oct. 7. Registration for formation is being accepted now through Thursday, April 6. For more information, contact the parish office at (773) 434-9600.

Tickets are now on sale for the 86th Annual St. Rita High School Alumni Banquet and Hall of Fame Dinner to be held on Friday, April 14, at Ridge Country Club, 10522 S California. This year’s inductees are Ron Lamb ’65, Mark Hacker ’90, David Fee ’95, Tony Bubacz ’96, Wade Weyer ’05 and Ryne White 05.

Now let’s return to 1973. When we left last week we learned that a local business owner had just received a Retailer of the Year award by this time in 1973, he had already been in business in what has been known as the Heart of Chicago Lawn for 32 years. Opening his first store here, his firm grew steadily, eventually to a chain of 11 stores with his flagship location remaining here. Who was this businessman?

Well the most popular answer received was Sol Polk, whose Polk Bros store was on 63rd Street for many years. I had not even thought of him, but that was a great answer. Brad O. centered on the Heart of Chicago Lawn and targeted the southwest corner of 63rd and Kedzie which led him to the correct answer of the Karoll’s Red Hanger store and its owner, Sam Karoll.

Fifty years ago, Water Wonderland Pet Center was billed as the area’s largest seller of tropical fish, able to boast 350 varieties, and also selling birds and small animals. I remember this store very well. Opening the door and walking in, all of a sudden, everything was black except for the iridescent glow of all the aquariums, alcove after alcove. It kind of took your breath away. Anyone else remember that? The store entrance was on a corner. What corner was that?

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