Things To Do
Virtual / Online Events…
The travails of being stuck inside during these difficult times – not even the weather is cooperating. We’ve collected a wide range of virtual / online events provided by local organizations. Check back often as we continue to update this list.
Virtual V-E Day Celebration Planned by First Division Museum
Public invited to honor WWII veterans by submitting short videos; 1940s-style music, fashion, dance and cocktails encouraged!
The COVID-19 pandemic isn’t stopping the First Division Museum at Cantigny Park from marking the 75th anniversary of V-E Day, the joyous end of World War II in Europe. A full day of celebratory activities had been planned at the park. Now the party is going digital and all are invited to join in honoring and thanking our WWII veterans.
In particular, the museum is asking the public to record 10-second videos with smart phones and upload them to the FDMuseum.org by Tuesday, May 5. The segments will be used in a “Cheer for Victory” video available for viewing on May 8, exactly 75 years after Victory in Europe Day in 1945.
Honor Flight Chicago is helping promote the video’s creation and plans to share the final product with as many WWII veterans as possible.
Video content ideas include sharing photos of family members who served; swing dancing; 1940s fashion and songs; homemade confetti tossing; and banging on pots and pans. More suggestions and video tips are posted on the First Division Museum website.
The site features other ways to participate in the virtual celebration, including family activities, and links to educational V-E Day videos. Those sporting vintage victory-inspired fashions are encouraged to share their photos at #FDMVEDAY. Or get in the spirit by hosting a virtual Toast to Victory party with friends, serving up popular cocktails from the WWII era. Recipes and a suggested toast script are posted online.
For more information, please visit www.FDMuseum.org
Casting a Historic Vote: Suffrage in Illinois
April 19, 4–5PM
Zoom Virtual Meeting
FREE Live digital lecture with Naper Settlement’s Director of Learning Experiences and Illinois Humanities Road Scholar Jeanne Schultz Angel.
Prior to 1920, women were denied the vote in the majority of elections in the United States. The struggle for enfranchisement began with the birth of our nation and the suffrage strategy was different for our local, state, and federal elections. From attorney Ellen Martin, the first woman to vote in Illinois, to Ida B. Wells, a woman who did not let racism stop her voice, women’s suffrage has been a battle hard fought by a diverse group of activists in Illinois.
This program will be hosted on Zoom. Register by Saturday, April 18 at 9:00AM and you will receive a confirmation email with the Zoom invitation. Donations to the Naperville Heritage Society are always welcome- please click here to donate: https://www.napersettlement.org/213/Donate
If you have any questions please email firstname.lastname@example.org
Water Street Studios School of Art GOES ONLINE!
Join us for our new online classes. Water Street Studios is a 501(c)3 for-purpose art center located in downtown Batavia, Illinois.
Dotting the Fibonacci Spiral
Using our ready-made design, learn how to paint and dot a Fibonacci Spiral in this unique workshop with mixed media artist Lisa Holzl. Tuesday, April 28, 1 p.m. $35
Drawing on Scratchboard
Learn how to work with scratchboard. This technique is a way of creating an image by starting with a black surface and scratching through it to reveal a white layer below. Thursday, April 30, 1 p.m. $35
Drawing with The Grid Method
Learn how to create accurate drawings from photos using the grid method. No previous drawing experience necessary! Tuesday, May 5, 1 p.m. $35
For more information visit: www.water-street-studios.coursestorm.com
Elgin Walks Together
Local Elgin Neighborhood Associations are working together to keep their residents healthy and active during the current “Shelter in Place” order. The five neighborhoods surrounding Downtown Elgin, including the Downtown Neighborhood Association of Elgin, (DNA), Elgin National Watch Historic District, Gifford Park Association (GPA), Near West Neighbors Association, (NENA) South West Area Neighbors (SWAN), are encouraging residents to walk around the Elgin Area, support their local businesses by walking to their establishments to pick up take-out orders, and enjoy the hidden gems within their respective neighborhood.
Residents can participate in this campaign by creating a social media post about their walk, including photos or video, and use the hashtag #ElginWalks. They are also encouraged to share their posts on their local Neighborhood’s Facebook pages or to the City of Elgin Facebook page.
The driving force behind this initiative is not only to promote wellness and encourage Elgin residents to explore their local neighborhoods, but to continue to strengthen their connection with their local Elgin community during the “Shelter in Place” order and beyond.
“Right now, our options may be limited but this is a perfect opportunity to get out and rediscover what we enjoy about walking around our own neighborhoods.” said DNA’s Executive Director Jennifer Fukala, “Take a walk downtown along the river and enjoy some public art and architecture.”
The DNA’s website will act as the central hub for each neighborhood, offering several highlights from each neighborhood.
Additional outdoor activities included in the #ElginWalks campaign are self-guided historic walking tours, helping the Elgin Boys & Girls Club reach their goal of collecting five hundred bags of trash for their “Slash the Trash” program, and the Centre of Elgin’s Walking Challenge.
“I encourage every resident to enjoy the spring weather by walking in your neighborhood and exploring your local parks,” said Mayor David Kaptain. “We can take pride in our neighborhoods by helping pickup any litter along our walks, too.”
Short, Sincere Stories of Happiness Don’t Happen by Happenstance
Wouldn’t it be nice to have a little break in your day to hear something that makes you feel good?
A group of friends (who happen to be the best motivating, inspiring speakers on the planet) want to help you out. Together with eSpeakers, they’ve created a YouTube channel to share 5-10-minute stories that will make you laugh, give you hope, and encourage you to keep going during this tough time.
They’re not selling anything; they need nothing in return (other than for you to share these short videos and this channel with whomever you want to be happy).
The hope is that these short, sincere thoughts from talented speakers will remind us of all the “whys” there are to be happy, no matter what else is going on around us.
Link: New broadcasts are posted every Tuesdays and Thursdays at 12:00 pm EST, on the family-friendly YouTube channel, hosted live by eSpeakers:
Why I’m (Still) Happy YouTube channel
Museum of the American Revolution
The Museum of the American Revolution is turning three! Help us celebrate the Museum’s birthday – virtually! – on Sunday, April 19.
The Museum, which opened to the public on April 19, 2017 – the anniversary of the “shot heard ‘round the world” that ignited the Revolutionary War – has welcomed nearly a million visitors from across the nation and around the world to explore the tumult and transformation of the Revolutionary era.
Visit the Museum’s website to download a recipe for “Whisky Cake” favored by George Washington, featuring dried fruit and nuts soaked overnight in whiskey. The recipe was adapted for the modern kitchen by Chef Walter Staib of City Tavern Restaurant, located just around the corner from the Museum. Watch here as Chef Staib and Chef Diana demonstrate how to make the cake on the Emmy Award-winning PBS show “A Taste of History.” (A simpler whiskey cake recipe with ingredients that you may have at home is available here.)
For a celebratory toast, download the recipe for a simple three-ingredient rum shrub cocktail (along with a mocktail version), a popular drink at many early American gatherings and celebrations. Take a photo of your concoctions and share it with us using @AmRevMuseum on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.
April 19 also marks the 245th anniversary of the first shot of the Revolutionary War – later called the “shot heard round the world” by American poet Ralph Waldo Emerson – at the Old North Bridge in Concord, Massachusetts. Join us on Facebook at 11 a.m. on April 19, as we commemorate this anniversary with a video presentation featuring Tyler Putman, Manager of Gallery Interpretation, who will tell compelling stories about the remarkable witness objects from the battles at Lexington and Concord.
- An original beam from the North Bridge, on loan from the Concord Museum;
- The gun carried by Captain David Brown, leader of a company of Concord minutemen, as he confronted a British force across the North Bridge;
- ABritish musket a soldier of the 4th (King’s Own) Regiment of Foot;
- A mirror from Captain David Brown’s house that was damaged by a British soldier on April 19, on loan from the Concord Museum;
- And a powder horn and sword carried by men who stood with Captain Brown to confront the British troops at the bridge, on loan from the Concord Museum.
MindPath Care Centers
MindPath Care Centers, a leading provider of outpatient mental and behavioral health services, is offering the community an opportunity to chat with experts about a variety of topics that relate to the pandemic.
- How healthcare workers can manage their own mental health
- How seniors can care for their mental health
“How Healthcare Workers Can Care for their Own Mental Health During the Pandemic”
Fb Live on Fri, 4/17 at noon
With Dr. Shantel Sullivan, MindPath Care Centers
Join & Ask Questions: facebook.com/mindpathcare/posts/2545883218850928
“How Seniors Can Care for their Mental Health During the Pandemic””
YouTube Live on Fri, 4/17 at 1:30p
With Dr. Yvonne Monroe, MindPath Care Centers
Share this event with your networks on Fb: facebook.com/mindpathcare/posts/2545915658847684
Join & Ask Questions on YouTube: youtu.be/T0-LdiKOxmY
MIDEWIN NEWS – The Midewin National Tallgrass Prairie is a tallgrass prairie reserve and United States National Grassland operated by the United States Forest Service.
“Midewin At Home”: #AllInIllinois Webinar series provides public information on a wide array of natural resources and conservation topics with ties to prairie.
Thursdays, 9-10 a.m. until further notice
The USDA Forest Service – Midewin National Tallgrass Prairie will offer free informational webinars for the public from 9-10 a.m. on Thursdays until further notice. Each webinar will feature a different topic on natural resources or conservation. The schedule of topics is as follows:
“Midewin and the I&M Canal”
Thursday, April 16, 9-10 a.m.
Celebrate the 35th anniversary of America’s FIRST National Heritage Area – The Illinois & Michigan Canal National Heritage Area! Host: Joe Wheeler, Midewin Archaeologist, Heritage Program Manager and Tribal Liaison. LINK: https://usfs.adobeconnect.com/r9-midewin-500/
“How Corn Became King, Twice, in Illinois”
Thursday, April 23, 9-10 a.m.
Explore the fascinating history of agriculture in the State of Illinois and learn about the impact of corn and farming practices. Find out how the Midwest became the “Corn Belt” it is today. Host: Joe Wheeler, Midewin Archaeologist, Heritage Program Manager and Tribal Liaison. LINK: https://usfs.adobeconnect.com/r9-midewin-1000/
Thursday, April 30, 9-10 a.m.
What species of trees are native to the prairies? How do you identify them? What is a “Witness Tree”? Host: Laura Lewis, Midewin Visitor Information Specialist. LINK: https://usfs.adobeconnect.com/r9-midewin-1000/
“Prairie Farm History”
Thursday, May 7, 9-10 a.m.
Learn about historic farm items on display at the Wilmington Island Park District community building; Elwood Village Hall; and soon at the Joliet Area Historical Museum (date TBD). Host: William Shea, Midewin Visitor Information Specialist. LINK: https://usfs.adobeconnect.com/r9-midewin-1000/
“Midewin For Kids”
Thursday, May 14, 9-10 a.m.
Bees, bats, frogs & more! These are just of a few of the topics that are on the “Midewin for Kids” schedule for 2020. This webinar will be a “sampler” of the Midewin 2020 schedule – with interesting facts for all ages. Host: Siobhan Solkowski Peacy, Midewin Visitor Information Specialist. LINK: https://usfs.adobeconnect.com/r9-midewin-1000/
RSVPs are not required; webinars will be accessible to the first 500 participants on April 16; webinars will be accessible to the first 1,000 participants from April 23 until further notice.
The Midewin National Tallgrass Prairie is a tallgrass prairie reserve and United States National Grassland operated by the United States Forest Service. Address: 30239 IL-53, Wilmington, IL
Anxiety- What we all need to know right now
Anxious feelings are understandably very high right now in youth given COVID-19. My daughter is a senior in high school and gets waves of many emotions right now — such as anxious feelings related to deciding on a college or sad feelings thinking about all the things she will miss from not being able to go back to her school. All kids have stories right now about things they are fearing, regretting, missing out on, obsessing over, and much more.
As a physician, I thought it would be helpful to give insight into the difference between anxious feelings vs. clinical anxiety, and then to provide examples of skills and resources.
I have been talking with psychiatrists and psychologists who are finding that many teens who were experiencing a lot of anxious feelings related to things at school are emotionally doing overall better with school out. Yet they do talk about how this can change for them at any time, particularly as the days like these continue.
Traditionally schools in our country do not teach about mental health challenges and skills. Fortunately, that is changing, as seen in Screenagers NEXT CHAPTER.
No matter what has been taught at school, there is still so much that can be discussed with our kids that will help them when they face anxious feelings and will help them to help their friends and others.