Wildwood Park council revived
by BRIAN NADIG
The recent revival of the Wildwood Park Advisory Council came as welcome news to residents at the May 15 meeting of the North Edgebrook Civic Association.
"This is huge," association president Erick Robertson said after the meeting. The association unanimously passed a resolution pledging to support the council in its efforts to reconstitute itself.
Robertson said that the advisory council could play a key role in addressing issues related to the group, including baseball and football leagues and Wildwood School, which use the park regularly. In the past the civic association has held community walks through the park at night to address issues of rowdy teenage behavior.
Advisory council president Bruce Canetti said that the council had not been meeting in recent years and that new bylaws are being formulated. Councils, whose members are volunteers, work with park supervisors and serve in an advisory capacity to the Chicago Park District.
The council held a community meeting on May 18 to discuss plans for a new playlot at the park, 6950 N. Hiawatha Ave. The park district plans to use input from the meeting to come up with a few different designs that will be presented to the community at later meeting, Canetti said.
Some residents have said that the existing playlot may be about 20 years old, according to Canetti.
In other news, the civic association is forming a committee to help design a community garden at Caldwell and Estes avenues. The garden is one of several in the 41st Ward which are being funded through the ward’s discretionary budget, which was determined by a community vote held by Alderman Anthony Napolitano.
The association is hoping to work with Neighbor Space, a nonprofit agency which assists community groups in their efforts to maintain public green spaces.
The association also is sponsoring a community garage sale at about 20 homes from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, May 20, and holds monthly social gatherings on the landscaped traffic island on McAlpin Avenue between Tahoma and Hiawatha avenues.
"Several people at the block party said this was a great island, and we need to use if for more events," Robertson said.
At the beginning of the meeting, Robertson gave an update on the status of the association.
"You couldn’t choose a better time to join. The association is financially sound. More people are involved now than have been for at least the last 6 years. We have been working with the alderman’s office and other community associations to advocate on behalf of our neighborhood.
"We have had more events in the last year alone than we have in the previous 4 years combined. We have momentum, and I couldn’t think of a better time to join," Robertson said.
The association announced the following board of directors and officers: president Erick Robertson, vice president Jim Hankin, treasurer Roslyn Steinberg and secretary Ellen Davidson and directors Mike Dwyer, Kathy Rodden, Mary Cuny, Steve Kravetz, James Tjioe and Bruce Canetti.
Canetti and Tjioe were elected at the May meeting, and the board is looking to fill two more vacancies.
More information on the association is available at northedgebrook.org.