“Talk Of The Town” It’s a Social World #ClarendonHillsRocks


Mike McCurry’s Column In The Clarendon Courier 

 

It’s a Social World

Laughter echoed from the basement of Christ Lutheran Church one snowy Monday night.  The evening began with a craft; a hefty cotton ball which slowly morphed into snowman with two eyeballs and the legs were fashioned from pipe cleaners.  As a game ensued, the laughter and screaming got louder.  As the night settled around in a circle, one of the dads began to tell a story.  The girls were intrigued by the twists and turns the story teller told about nature.  The dads were pleased it had a moral lesson about life.  The night ended with our Indian Princesses and fathers reciting the “friend forever” creed.

I remember enjoying social studies back in my school boy days but never thought I would be writing about it, or much less, living it out!  American playwright Tony Kushner said, “The smallest indivisible human unit is two people, not one; one is a fiction.  From such nets of soul’s societies, the social world, human life springs.”

Today our communities have expanded geographically and online through social networks like Facebook, twitter, and the Mom’s List but is there really a substitute for the network in which you live?  Who makes up your community network?  Your church, neighbors, the Babysitting Co-op, Lyons Club, Infant Welfare Society, Bridge Club?  Theater, dance, cheer?  Parents from your kid’s sports teams: AYSO Soccer, Clarendon Hills Little League, Cardinal Baseball, gymnastics, Falcons Football, Biddyball, Jody Harrison, Red Devils?  Your age and or quite possibly, the age of your children’s might have a lot to do with your connections around town.  When we live in a town the size of Clarendon Hills (8750 according to the 2012 survey), which (in my opinion) is not that big at all, it is wonderful to belong to the various smaller networks of people that make our life more purposeful, interesting, manageable and meaningful.

One of the highlights of my networking in our wonderful community is my association with charitable groups and family-centered organizations that benefit so many.  These groups highlight the various interests that abound in our Village.  Recently, aprogressive dinner party was organized by our local chapter of Infant Welfare.  A few weeks ago, my wife Amy and I joined about 25 other couples to begin the evening at the Caveney’s, on Oxford Ave., for a resplendent array of appetizers.  We then drew slips from a hat to learn that we would visit two doors down at the Tatum’s house next for a lavish dinner, other dinner hosts were the DeKuiper’s of S. Prospect, the Craig’s of Churchill Place, the Haran’s of Colfax and the Wyent’s of Golf Ave.  Scapa for night-caps was the destination for some of the dedicated crowd.  All areas of town made for a great evening – how cool!

Another shining example of local connecting and for those interested in a unique hobby, you might enjoy knowing about a group of about 30 to 50 guys – all beer aficionados – who get together to sample the newest batch of beer that our local “home brewers”, Eric Tech and Jack Gelman produce.  In addition, each guy who attends either brings his own sample of home brew or a favorite six-pack to be enjoyed by all during the night’s festivities.  There is food, laughter and even networking as many of the guys know each other from their involvement in Indian Princess / Indian Guides, sports or school.  Many of the guys even get their hair cut by Paul, at the Barber Shop.  This casual but integral group has been around for a couple of years and the number of attendees seems to be growing with each “meeting”.  Maybe a micro-brewery in Clarendon Hills next?  Interesting hobby to say the least!

Lastly, I would like to mention that my family participated in an Easter Egg Hunt at Steeves Park last Sunday.  Families from Walker Elementary School organized the event that almost got rained out!  Dozens of children lined up in anticipation of the great hunt and a chance to find the Golden Egg.  We had such a wonderful time watching the kids run and hanging out with the parents.  Everyone brought something to eat or drink and it made for a pleasant afternoon.  It’s so nice to be a part of a community that is active and involved.

So how are you connected?  Clarendon Hills offers so many opportunities to connect with one another.  The weather is changing, maybe it is time to venture out and try something new or invite someone in?  You never know what might happen!

Mike is a Clarendon Hills resident; husband; Indian Princes; Indian Guide Dad;  a Coach; an “old” football player and a real estate broker.  Mike’s columns are usually crafted about the buzz in and around Clarendon Hills.  It sometimes has a spin on real estate or cultural information, highlight a new business or announce school happenings.  He might include a “get-to-know” about some of our interesting Clarendon Hills residents and even a little about Clarendon Hills history. Whatever it is, it is sure to be about the “Talk of the Town”.

Mike McCurry’s office is located at 5 S. Prospect Ave., Clarendon Hills, IL 60514

630-325-2800 or visit his website at www.mmccurry.com

Clarendon Hills Easter Egg HuntClarendon Hills Easter Egg Hunt

Cute!

Cute!

“Talk of the Town” Mike McCurry’s Column in the Clarendon Courier


Chicago Skyline

Chicago Skyline

Spring break in city “almost” as good as Florida

As I am writing this column, I realize that many Clarendon Courier issues will be sitting on front porches throughout the Village while many folks are enjoying the warmth of sunny Florida or somewhere similar.  If you are not travelling or perhaps attend one of the parochial schools in the area, you might be enjoying a “stay-cation” like my family will be doing.   My family normally takes our “Spring Break” in December and January, because of my work.  Someone once told me that they hide during Spring Break so no one knows if they stayed home or not.  The McCurry’s aren’t going to do that!  We are going to enjoy wonderful world-class Chicago.  Why not enjoy all the wonderful things there are to do here?  One of our neighbors was gracious enough to offer their condo overlooking Millennium Park to us.  How could we say no?  This makes perfect sense with the museums, theater and lake nearby.  What a great opportunity to expose our children to the culture and educational opportunities the great city has to offer.

Ultimately, what really matters most is that our family will be together and the kids get a pool!  My kids love the pool and will spend all day jumping in and out of it.  By nighttime, it’s a very good thing for the parents!  These will be treasured memories that will last a lifetime.  Okay, now I’m finished making excuses.   Florida is a special place.  After the winter we have just come through, I do wish we were going there.  My mind takes me to our favorite place, Anna Marie Island, near Sarasota.  The beaches are long and the sand is sparkling clean.  The McCurry’s are pool and beach people!  Actually, we spend most our time doing these two activities.  Hopefully when you return from wherever you go, you will have not gotten too sunburned and your family has enjoyed one another.  At the end of your time away, what matters is that you got to spend it with our loved ones.  Welcome Home!

In Passing…

Linda Hurt- photo  4-3-14

Linda Hurt

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A revered resident passed away this past week.  Linda Hurt.  Many people will remember Linda from her 35 years of service as a science teacher at Hinsdale Central High School.  Linda was known for organizing the Baccalaureate program at the school as well as a popular Bible study group for students.

I first met Linda when I was a young man coaching football at Hinsdale Central.  We later shared duties as Elders at Christ Church of Oak Brook.  Linda had a huge impact on me, and many others, with her relentless gifts of encouragement.  Even towards the end of her life, Linda gave notes, books and her precious time to help people find their purpose.  She will be greatly missed by all who’s lives she touched.

Mike is a Clarendon Hills resident; husband; Indian Princes; Indian Guide Dad;  a Coach; an “old” football player and a real estate broker.  Mike’s columns are usually crafted about the buzz in and around Clarendon Hills.  It sometimes has a spin on real estate or cultural information, highlight a new business or announce school happenings.  He might include a “get-to-know” about some of our interesting Clarendon Hills residents and even a little about Clarendon Hills history. Whatever it is, it is sure to be about the “Talk of the Town”.

Mike McCurry’s office is located at 5 S. Prospect Ave., Clarendon Hills, IL 60514

630-325-2800 or visit his website at http://www.mmccurry.com

2014-03-30 16.36.17

The Bean!

The Bean!

Art Institute of Chicago

Art Institute of Chicago

2014-03-31 12.50.42

Family fun!

Family fun!

Science and Industry Museum

Science and Industry Museum

At Macy's!

At Macy’s!

2014-04-01 12.25.15

Millenium Park Chicago

Millennium Park Chicago

 

 

“Talk of the Town” Mike McCurry’s Column in the Clarendon Courier


Clarendon Hills.  What kind of town do we live in anyway?  To paraphrase what was once said, only men of steady habits must settle in this place for the serpentine appearance of streets might prove too much for a head not evenly balanced. 

I bet you would be interested in a little history of our Village:  In the 1830’s, The United States of America sold 960 acres in Sections 10 and 11 (most of Clarendon Hills) to John J. Monell for $1200.   This parcel of land then exchanged hands several times until many of the first real estate “players” came to the rescue and purchased the parcel.   You will recognize some, or all, of their names:  James M. Walker (my street), Charles Holmes, Orvil L. Grant, Henry P. Churchill and the big hitters, Henry Middaugh and Oliver J. Stough.

On November 4, 1873, the land was plotted and first recorded in the Recorders Office of DuPage County.     Robert C. Harris, the former president of the Chicago Burlington & Quincy Railroad, suggested calling the village “Clarendon Hills”.

I count myself as extremely fortunate to have an old plat book as well as an original Atlas of DuPage County, circa 1904.  This wonderful old atlas, now in its broken down binder, has many treasures inside.  It has many photos of the original, significant buildings in the DuPage County as well as some of the more prominent residents along with their biographies.  It’s a fascinating book to look through and find nuggets of our local history.   I was fortunate to find this atlas in an old building that was being sold in Hinsdale.   The atlas was a treasured possession of my wife Amy’s uncle, Jack Kuhlman, who began his law practice with her grandfather, John R. Collis.  John was an attorney in Hinsdale for many years.

After a review of the 1904 plat book map of Clarendon Hills, it shows that the North side of the tracks was not yet plotted but was called, West Hinsdale.  Many of the named streets on the south side of the railroad tracks have been either changed or never developed at all.  Hosek Park was supposed to have Hudson Ave. running down the middle of it.  Gee, I wonder why that never happened? Too much peat?  Part of east side of Hudson was called Summit; Bridge is now Ridge; lower Ridge was called Western; the south end of Western was called Harris and part of Eastern was called Pearl.  Bonnie and Byrd weren’t on the map yet and two courts, Allen and Hamill were put in well after the war.  Finally, if you’re not confused by now, Richmond was called Reed – certainly not to be confused with Trustee Ed Reid.  Stop in my office sometime and I’ll try to settle it all out for you.

Visit the Clarendon Hills Historical Society’s website for more information on Clarendon Hills.

District #181 News:

Congratulations to Dr. Kevin Russell!  Dr. Russell was just named Superintendent of Schools Chicago Ridge School District 127 ½.  Dr. Kevin Russell is the current Consolidated School District 181 Assistant Superintendent of Learning (Curriculum, Assessment and Instruction).

I had a chance to visit with Kevin about his many years at Walker School recently in his office.  Many Walker Elementary School families will fondly remember Dr. Russell from his time spent as their children’s principle.  He is looking forward to taking his expertise and vast knowledge to Chicago Ridge, but will hold many emotional ties to our district.

One of his fondest memories, he tells me, is that he will never forget the first day of school when he pulled into the Walker School parking lot.  Kevin saw this big yellow sign, and it said, THE WALKER FAMILIES WELCOME KEVIN RUSSELL, OUR NEW PRINCIPLE”.  Kevin told me he hung the sign up in his garage and still has it there today.  “I will never forget Walker School and how great they were to me – there is no way in the world that I could have been the Superintendent of Chicago Ridge if I weren’t the principle of Walker School” he went on to say.  I know, for one, we will miss his presence greatly, but wish him great success in his new position!

Mike McCurry’s office is located at 5 S. Prospect Ave., Clarendon Hills, IL 60514

630-325-2800 or visit his website at www.mmccurry.com

1904 Atlas of Dupage County

1904 Atlas of Dupage County

Atlas - Dupage County Illinois

Atlas – Dupage County Illinois

Henry C. Middaugh - Clarendon Hills
Henry C. Middaugh – Clarendon Hills

Plat Map of Clarendon Hills and West Hinsdale (later called Clarendon Hills) from 1904

Plat Map of Clarendon Hills and West Hinsdale (later called Clarendon Hills) from 1904

Buildings and homes from Dupage County around the turn of the century.

Buildings and homes from Dupage County around the turn of the century.
Bibliagraphy - Patrons of Dupage County

Bibliagraphy – Patrons of Dupage County

Pictures of important people in Dupage County

Pictures of important people in Dupage County

Plat of Hinsdale Illinois
Plat of Hinsdale Illinois

 

 

Mike is a Clarendon Hills resident; husband; Indian Princes; Indian Guide Dad;  a Coach; an “old” football player and a real estate broker.  Mike’s  columns are usually crafted about the buzz in and around Clarendon Hills.  It sometimes has a spin on real estate or cultural information, highlight a new business or announce school happenings.  He might include a “get-to-know” about some of our interesting Clarendon Hills residents and even a little about Clarendon Hills history. Whatever it is, it is sure to be about the “Talk of the Town”.

“TALK of the TOWN” Mike McCurry’s Column in the Clarendon Courier


“TALK of the TOWN”

by Mike McCurry

I am honored to be contributor to The Clarendon Hills Courier, especially in this very first edition!  One might ask, what does McCurry have to say?  Well, let’s see!  I’m a Clarendon Hills resident; husband; Indian Princes; Indian Guide Dad;  a Coach; an “old” football player and a real estate broker.  This first column and subsequent columns will be crafted about what is the buzz in and around Clarendon Hills.  It might sometimes have a spin on real estate or cultural information, highlight a new business or announce school happenings.  I might include a “get-to-know” about some of our interesting Clarendon Hills residents and even a little about Clarendon Hills history. Whatever it is, it is sure to be about the “Talk of the Town”.

I think I will start this issue of “Talk of the Town” by highlighting one of the Village’s “sweetest” business’.  Vintage Confections.  Did you know that our own Vintage Confections had their custom lollipops displayed and discussed on a recent episode of The View? They did!  Whoopi Goldberg gave them to each of her friends.  It’s an intriguing store for sure, but Vintage Confections is more well known around the globe than in Clarendon Hills.  Vintage Confections is having their grand opening on March 8th at their new, much larger and re-designed, store now located at 26-28 S Prospect Ave.  Please show your support of this burgeoning company and stop by during their grand opening  -  treat yourself to one of their truly delicious confections!

“Talk” about an interesting resident of Clarendon Hills, and you might mention J. Michael Major, DDS!  Not only is he extremely skilled as a dentist, but Dr. Major is also an award winning author.  Dr. Major has just won the Lovely Award for Best First Novel, “One Man’s Castle”.  We certainly don’t lack talent in our Village.  You will be able to find Dr. Major either being an extremely talented dentist or maybe even beginning a new novel, at his 1 McIntosh Ave. office.

One of our most treasured events, Daisy Days, will be held on Father’s Day weekend this year.  It’s a welcome return to the high spots of the weekend after an overwhelming response from last year’s event.   Daisy Days will again return to its roots by offering family fun and musical entertainment on both nights of the festival.   The ever-popular Daisy Dash will once again be held on Sunday, June 15, Father’s Day.

A little real estate scoop about our wonderful Village:  A bank just sold the vacant 4 Walker landsite for bargain price of $400,000 to an investor.  It’s probably good timing since the Downtown Master Plan is winding down and the investor will have a better understanding of what will be allowed for future development opportunities.

The 88 Park condominium project will most likely break ground this year if they get through the current lawsuit that has been brought against the villiage.  Developer Michael Van Zandt is optimistic about moving forward as he has five strong commitments from interested potential buyers wanting to proceed with this exciting venture.  Maybe the near future will bring some new buildings to town?

Do you like pizza?  Did you know that we have 5 restaurants who serve the delicious pies?  Send me the name your favorite local pizza restaurant and we’ll announce it in the next edition.

Mike McCurry’s office is located at 5 S. Prospect Ave., Clarendon Hills, IL 60514 630-325-2800 or visit his website at www.mmccurry.com

 

 

July 29, 2013 …


July 29, 2013

Dear Business Owner,

I am writing to reach out to you about two upcoming construction projects that may impact your business. These projects will not be of the length or scope of the construction we all endured last summer, but will still impact our downtown. In August, the Village plans to repave the Metra Lot. We also recently learned that BNSF plans to repair the railroad crossing, which will shut down Prospect Avenue at the crossing for several weeks. Both projects are explained in detail below and are expected to take place in August.

Metra Station Parking Lot Repaving:
The first project is the repaving of the Metra Station Parking lot. Tentatively, this project is scheduled to begin on or about August 19th. The lot is in a state of disrepair. Last year we were awarded a grant from West Suburban Mass Transit to cover 2/3rds of the cost of this project. The work will involve the complete shutdown of the Metra station parking lot for approximately two weeks.

Fortunately, the Village has arranged for the temporary usage of the property that is currently vacant at the corner of Walker and Park Avenues for commuter parking during the construction. This lot will only be available to individuals with Metra Station Parking Permits per the request of the property owner. Permit holders will also be encouraged to utilize unused meter spots on Burlington and Railroad Avenues during this period. There should be no direct impact on parking on Prospect Avenue, Eastern, or Park Avenue during this project.

Burlington Northern Santa Fe/Prospect Avenue Crossing Improvements:
The Village was recently made aware that Burlington Northern Santa Fe railroad plans to add the Prospect Avenue crossing to a series of crossing improvements they plan to conduct this year, beginning on or about August 23rd. The rubber pad that runs along the tracks has deteriorated severely and could pose a safety hazard to both pedestrians and emergency vehicles if not repaired. BNSF plans to replace it with a concrete pad similar to what was recently installed at the Garfield Avenue crossing in Hinsdale and Cass Avenue crossing in Westmont. Unfortunately, this project will require Prospect Avenue to be completely shut down for approximately 10 days at the location of the crossing. Each of the three railway lines will also be closed in succession during this process. Per BNSF, there is no way to maintain even one lane of traffic during this process. All vehicular traffic will be rerouted to Cass Avenue and/or Hinsdale during this period. Pedestrian access will also be limited to the unsignaled pedestrian crossing east of Prospect Avenue near the station building.

The Village recognizes that this construction will impact business during this period. We would like to invite you to an open house on Wednesday August 7th at 9am at Village Hall to discuss what can be done to minimize the potential negative impact of these projects and to help everyone understand the process. In particular, we would like to seek your feedback on whether business owners would prefer that these two projects occur simultaneously, or at two different times. While we cannot move the BNSF project, we do have the ability to move the start date of parking lot project.

If you cannot attend the meeting on August 7th, and if you have additional thoughts or concerns about this project, please call us at (630) 286-5401 so we can arrange a time to meet with you personally. We want to speak with a representative of each business on this issue, if possible.

Should you have any additional questions about the project, please feel free to contact me at 630-286-5404 or rrecklaus@clarendonhills.us or Public Works Director Mike Millette at 630-286-4752 or mmillette@clarendonhills.us. We also encourage you to contact us during the upcoming construction projects with any questions or concerns you might have.
Thank you in advance for your patience during these projects.

Best Regards,

Randall Recklaus
Village Manager

Village of Clarendon Hills sends a letter to the downtown business owners regarding upcoming construction in the village.  The Metra lot and the train crossing will be closed for the consturction

Parades and Fireworks! Hinsdale to LaGrange, Oak Brook to Burr Ridge!


Come celebrate our country! Check out what’s happening around town this week…

BURR RIDGE  -July 3rd

Fireworks sizzle at dusk on July 3rd at Walker Park – Wolf Road & 74th Street but the fun begins at 5:30pm. See www.pleasantdaleparks.org  for event details!

HINSDALE – July 4th

Kicking off at Sixth & Garfield, the Hinsdale Independence Day parade begins at 10am and is sure to delight everyone! Afterwards, head on over to Burlington Park and enjoy the Independence Day Celebration from 11am-4pm. The event is free. Visit www.villiageofhinsdale.org for further information.

LA GRANGE – July 3rd

Start your evening off listening to patriotic music at St. Cletus Catholic Church at 600 W. 55th Street in Lagrange and then watch the sky light up with color as Lagrange Country Club’s fireworks dazzle starting at 9:30pm -between Waiola and Stone Avenues and 47th & 48th Streets.

OAK BROOK – July 3rd

Fun for all at the Taste of Oak Brook! The celebration begins at 4pm, and runs until 9pm with fireworks at dusk. The North side of 31st Street, West of York Road. Featuring local music and restaurants. For more information, go to www.oak-brook.org.

Advance Listing Notice! Clarendon Hills – Perfect Location!


Advance Listing Notice! Clarendon Hills - Perfect Location!

This might be the hottest house to hit the market this summer. It has 5 bedrooms and has been meticulously remodeled by the owners. A 3 car garage is icing on the 4th of July cake!

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