The Palos Heights Beautification Committee hosted an Adopt-A-Pot flower planting day on May 20 in the parking lot of the Palos Heights Swimming Pool, 7607 W. College Drive. (Photos by Denise Hyker)

The Palos Heights Beautification Committee hosted an Adopt-A-Pot flower planting day on May 20 in the parking lot of the Palos Heights Swimming Pool, 7607 W. College Drive. (Photos by Denise Hyker)

Adopt-A-Pot program brightens up Palos Heights

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By Kelly White

The Palos Heights Beautification Committee works hard to do just what its name entails, keep the city beautiful.

To provide a spark of greenery and a pop of color outside of local businesses, parks and municipal buildings, the committee hosted an Adopt-A-Pot flower planting day on May 20 in the parking lot of the Palos Heights Swimming Pool, 7607 W. College Drive.

As a part of the Beautification Committee, the Adopt-A-Pot program began more than 20 years ago, originally as the Adopt-A-Tree program where flowers and trees were planted along Harlem Avenue.

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Mary Dombrowski, wife of the late Ed Dombrowski who spearheaded Palos Heights’ Adopt-A-Pot program, was proud to be a part of this year’s event.

“What started out with the late Aldermen Jean Gnap and Peter Kamp and myself planting flowers around the trees on Harlem Avenue has evolved into a large outreach of community service and beautification,” Palos Heights Mayor Bob Straz said.

The program transitioned to the Adopt-A-Pot event, which stands strongly behind the Beautification Committee’s mission to help beautify the city through volunteer efforts.

Along with the Adopt-A-Pot program, the Beautification Committee encompasses several volunteer committees that promote community economic development and pride of ownership and enhance community beautification and aesthetic quality of life. Those committees include: Adopt-A-Pot, Keep Palos Heights Beautiful, the Art Garden, Business and Economic Development, the original Farmers Market and the Classic Car Event.

“Flowers are fun and make people happy,” Denise Hyker, co-chairman of the Adopt-A-Pot program and member of the Palos Heights Beautification Committee, said. “To be a part of an effort to help improve and enhance our community with beautiful flowers makes for an enjoyable morning, plus you have the opportunity to meet other likeminded people.”

Hyker co-chairs the event along with Beautification Committee member, Vince Petrosius and Katie Blood from the Palos Heights Public Works Department. Palos Heights residents, Jan Colvin and Ashley Pala, also provide additional help to support this program.

“The Adopt-A-Pot program is a Beautification Committee effort started to enhance our business district and community for all to enjoy,” Hyker said.

Once again, the day was held in honor of the late Ed Dombrowski, of Palos Heights. Dombrowski was the former Chairman the Beautification Committee for many years. He headed the Adopt-A-Pot program up until he sadly passed away in 2020.

“He (Ed) helped to beautify our city with his landscaping talents for many years,” Hyker said.

The Adopt-A-Pot sponsorship fee was $80, which included the cost of the dirt, plants, flowers, signage, watering, seasonal maintenance, watering and placement within the city.

This was a self-funding program designed to benefit the wider community and support economic development and promote ambiance in a visitor friendly atmosphere. All funds raised went directly to benefit the Adopt-A-Pot program to offset the cost of running this program.

“Recently, the city honored volunteers who have served our community for decades,” Palos Heights Alderman Jeffrey Key said. “Many of the names on the new recognition wall at City Hall are responsible for Adopt-A-Pot. Years ago, a handful of dedicated residents started this program that benefits every person of Palos Heights. Their efforts are still beautifying every corner of our city and we owe them a debt of gratitude.”

The 65 pots, and 11 stationary pots, will be placed near businesses, Lake Katherine Nature Center & Botanical Garden, municipal parkways, parks as well as outdoors at Homeowner Associations that sponsor the program by Beautification Committee members, with a goal to have all pots placed during the month of June.

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The Palos Heights Woman’s Club took part in Palos Heights’ Adopt-A-Pot program on Saturday morning.

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