Factions battle for control of Worth Township Board

Kevin Hughes, Worth Township Community First Party mayoral candidate

Katie Elwood, Worth Township Community First Party clerk candidate

John Dietrick, Worth Township Community First Party assessor candidate

Patrick Hanlon, Worth Township Community First Party trustee candidate

By Laura Bollin

Two full slates of candidates are running for positions on the Worth Township board.

The Worth United Party, made up mostly of incumbents, is running on a platform of fiscal responsibility while adding and maintaining programs to the township, while the opposition Worth Township Community First Party is pledging to give reserve money back to residents and reduce costs for the township.

Worth Township includes Worth, Evergreen Park, Chicago Ridge, Oak Lawn and Palos Heights.

John F. Murphy
Incumbent Worth Township Supervisor John F. Murphy, 66, has lived in Evergreen Park for 42 years. Prior to being elected supervisor in 1997, he served for 10 years as an Evergreen Park village trustee. He holds a bachelor’s degree in food science from Ohio State University and served in the Navy in Vietnam and Korea from 1965 to 1969.
Murphy is running for reelection to continue the work he has been doing in the township. When he was first elected, the township was $2 million in debt because of an addition that was put on the township building, and that debt has since been paid off, he said. The township has reduced its budget by 14 percent over the past five years, he added.

“There is still work to be done,” Murphy said. “For one thing, the roof on the township building itself is 25 or 30 years old, so it is going to have to be replaced. That is why we cut down the budget, so we could have a surplus to replace the roof and resurface the parking lot there.”

Services to township residents are also important, like helping people appeal their property taxes and providing physicals and inoculations at the township clinic, Murphy said. During his time in office, the clinic has expanded their program to include physicals for adults as well as children and flu shots. The food pantry has also expanded, and now provides food for residents as well as Christmas and Thanksgiving dinners for 150 underprivileged families per year.

Part of being fiscally responsible is not granting pay raises, Murphy said, and in October 2012, the township board approved an ordinance that froze pay for the next four years.

Murphy also had concerns about the Community First’s party’s claim that they could give residential rebates of $30 to $50 from the township’s surplus.

“The average tax bill from the general fund is $30, and if they are going to give 15 percent of that back, that is only $4.50,” Murphy said. “It would be the $4.50 plus 50 cents for mailing and handling. If they are talking about the 60,000 households in the township, that is $300,000. If they intend to give back $50, then we’re talking about $30 million. That is money we don’t have.”

Murphy said he has cultivated relationships with leaders in all of the towns in the township, and has financial experience that is beneficial to the supervisor role.

“I have experience working with budgets and negotiating contracts, and I get along with people,” Murphy said. “We have Republicans and Democrats on our ticket, and we get along. We don’t agree on everything, but when a vote is taken, then we move on to the next thing, and we might agree on that. We have done a lot of good things in the township.”

Kevin Hughes
Kevin Hughes, 45, has lived in Oak Lawn for 17 years. He owns a bachelor’s degree in business administration from St. Norbert College, and works as the vice president of sales and marketing for MicroTek. He has no prior political experience and is running for the first time. Hughes is the self-described “voice” of the Community First Party, and all candidates on the slate agreed to let Hughes be their spokesperson and said they were all on the same platform, he said. The other candidates on the slate did not want to be interviewed and instead sent responses via email.

Hughes said he was running for office to be more involved in his community. Hughes and the other party candidates believe in term limits, not having part-time officials participate in the pension program, and giving surplus funds back to the taxpayers.

“I would bring fresh ideas to the table,” Hughes said. “I manage and control a $40 to $50 million budget every year. I would look at the township as a business. I also really want to make sure we are bringing those services that are missing to the community. The township needs to take care of the small pockets of areas municipalities are not covering, like maintaining the roads.

Hughes said that the township officials, which are part time positions, should not be participating in the full-time pension program. Murphy said that while the officials participate in the pension program, it is not like a Chicago pension program where officials are receiving a significant amount of money.

“We’re not talking 80 percent of an $80,000 salary,” Murphy said. “It doesn’t pay out that much, and we contribute to it.”

Township clerk Roger Benson said after eight years, a trustee would only make $108 per month in a pension. After 10 years, a trustee would make $118 a month.

A rebate for residents is another important issue for the Community First Party.

“We need to give some sort of rebate to the homeowners of Worth Township,” Hughes said. “I believe in a rainy day fund, but at some point, it gets to be too much. We’d be giving back $33 or $34 per household. One woman told me a couple of weeks ago that she could buy a week’s worth of groceries with that. I am hoping we can be seen as a trendsetter. Other municipalities and counties that have a surplus as well, everybody could give a little bit back, and it really starts to mean something.”

Hughes also wants to increase the programs at the township. 

“We can also offer more athletic and academic programs, like a chess club or after school programs.”


John Z. Toscas
Incumbent assessor John Z. Toscas, 56, has served as the township assessor since 2000 and is running for his fourth term. He owns bachelor’s degrees in criminal justice and sociology from the University of Illinois at Chicago, a master’s degree in public administration from Roosevelt University and a juris doctorate from The John Marshall Law School. He has lived in Crestwood for 30 years and has also served as a Crestwood trustee for the last 20 months. He is the former president of Cook County School District 130. He is also a municipal and government attorney and runs the Law Offices of John Z. Toscas in Palos Heights.

“I’m running for reelection because I love my job, and it is honestly the most rewarding job I have ever had,” Toscas said. “I get to help people who don’t have anyone else to help them.”

Toscas said during his time in office, he has made township services better known to residents, and implemented a computer system where all computers are on a network.

“When I took over the office, no one in our township other than a few people even knew this place existed,” Toscas said. “When I asked to see how many people they served, I was told it was only one or two visitors a week, and they didn’t file (tax) appeals. Now, it is a new era. Twelve years later, we have helped almost 16,000 households file residential appeals.”

Toscas said the township candidates worked well together. The assessor’s office is separate from the township - his election, for example, runs from January to December, so his term won’t officially end until Dec. 2013, but all parts work like a “well-oiled machine,” Toscas said.

As for concerns about pay raises, salaries were raised for the first time after 16 years, and a pay freeze went into effect in October for a freeze over the next four years.

“We don’t raise taxes and we don’t spend money foolishly,” Toscas said. “We are very frugal.”

Toscas called the idea of a rebate for homeowners “insane.”

“General assistance is there for a reason,” Toscas said. “When people have extraordinary hardships, they line up at our food pantry or get general assistance checks. If they come to us and there is no money, how are we supposed to take care of them?”

John Dietrick
Toscas’ challenger is John Dietrick, 44, of Oak Lawn. He owns a master’s degree in accounting and financial management from the Keller Graduate School of Management of DeVry University. He works as an accountant.

Dietrick wants to save residents money by eliminating programs that are duplicated by the municipalities in the township or the state of Illinois. If elected, he also plans to cultivate an open door policy where he will always be available to return phone calls or speak with any resident concerning tax issues or other problems.


Roger Benson
Benson was elected as a township trustee in 1997, and was appointed to the clerk position in August after longtime Clerk Bud Gavin died. He is running for his first term as clerk. Benson, 59, has lived in Oak Lawn for 50 years. He graduated from Richards High School. He owns B.J. McMahon’s bar in Oak Lawn.

“I want to continue as clerk because it will be a new challenge for me,” Benson said.

If he is elected, Benson plans to make sure taxpayers’ dollars are being spent wisely, he said.

“We are there to watch taxpayers’ money, provide services, and provide accurate accounting of the finances,” Benson said. “We have to run it like a business, with only so much to spend and so many things to get done.”

Benson disagreed with the Community First Party’s claim that taxpayers should be reimbursed.

“It would only be $4.50 per household,” Benson said. “We have old buildings, we had a flood once, and the tax bills don’t go out on time. You never know what is coming down the pike. If we didn’t have a safeguard in place when the money was there, we would have been in trouble and borrowing money. We’ve been there 16 years. We’ve been frugal. We only spend what we have to spend. As long as we maintain quality and services to our constituents, I think we have done a good job. [The other party] think they can build a better mousetrap, but they’ve never built a mousetrap.”

Katie Elwood
Benson’s challenger, Katie Elwood, 39, has lived in Evergreen Park for 32 years. She owns a bachelor’s degree in general studies from Northern Illinois University. She is the former vice president of the Southwest Elementary Parent Teacher Association and the former president of the Evergreen Park School District 124 Foundation.

“I am running for office because I believe I can be a voice and advocate for our community,” Elwood said. “For me, the clerk position means bringing information to the people. As keeper of the records, I believe that it is important to make sure all township information, such as documents, transaction and meeting minutes are readily available by a quick click of a button.”


Highway commissioner
Steve Loulousis
Loulousis, 65, of Oak Lawn has served as the highway commissioner since 2005 and is running for his third term. He graduated from Richards High School. He served on the Children’s Museum in Oak Lawn board of directors and the Oak Lawn Park Board. He spent six years in the Illinois Reserve National Guard in Fort Jackson, N.C. and Infantry 175 in Illinois. He works in sales for Citywide Produce.

“I believe in running the highway district as a business,” Loulousis said. “I am a taxpayer, and my taxpayer dollars go there. I have to watch my dollars and how they are spent.”

Loulousis said his eight years of experience make him qualified for the position.

“I know the details of the job, the costs, how to manage the budget and keep a low cost for taxpayers,” Loulousis said.

The role of the township is to provide services for the residents, such as maintaining the roads, ditches, water flow issues, sewage issues, pothole and street repairs, and snowplowing.

As highway commissioner, Loulousis said he gives 50 percent of the tax dollars received from taxpayers back into the roads and other projects.

Loulousis is currently working on obtaining a $200,000 community block development grant from the state of Illinois that will repair four blocks from 117th to 119th streets from Central Park to Lawndale avenues.

Edward Moody
Moody, 48, of Chicago Ridge, graduated from Reavis High School. He works as the administrator for the chief judge of the circuit court.

If elected, Moody wants to implement a plan that will result in more resurfaced roads and overall infrastructure improvements for Worth Township. He believes his experience as a highway technician engineer and the owner of a janitorial and maintenance business make him qualified for the position. He also said he has relationships with legislators that will aid in his effort to secure additional funding for neglected roads and sewers in the township. Moody believes “unresponsive and disconnected” politicians have allowed road and flooding issues to become progressively worse in the township. He wants to repair the roads and sewers to improve the quality of life for township residents.


Four trustee candidates are running on each party’s ticket. On the Worth United Party slate, incumbent trustees John “Jack” Lind, Michael E. Mahoney and appointed trustee David J. Walsh are running for re-election. Newcomer Kelly Houlihan replaced appointed trustee Marianne Viverito Chmela, who could not continue running for re-election because of her job working for Congressman Dan Lipinski. Chmela said Lipinski had an employment policy she was unaware of, and Houlihan was chosen to replace her. On the Community First Party ticket, candidates Richard Lewandowski, Eamon McMahon, Theresa M. Roche and Patrick Hanlon are running for trustee.

Worth United Party
David J. Walsh, 80, has lived in Hometown for 52 years. He formerly served as an alderman in Hometown from 1970 to 1974 and 1988 to 1990. He also served as the Worth Township collector from 2005 to 2013. He graduated from Mt. Carmel High School and served in the Army at the Army Arctic Center in Big Delta, AK. He was appointed as a trustee in July 2012. He works as a real estate broker and appraiser.

“I’ll make a good trustee because I have been at every meeting an am up to speed on everything,” Walsh said. “I work with the people, not against them. I’m the chairman of the buildings and grounds committee, and I meet with the building superintendent three or four times a week and go over what problems have come up.”

The township is able to do things that the municipalities cannot afford to do, like provide a psychologist, dentist, and podiatrist on staff.

“We take care of what the local government can’t do and the unincorporated areas that have nobody to take care of them,” Walsh said. “The township is extremely important and we can’t afford to let it go.”

Walsh said the position lets him contribute to the community.

“I am very proud of the group I work with,” Walsh said. “I am working with a coalition of Democrats and Republicans and we get the job done with a minimal amount of trouble.”
John “Jack” Lind

John “Jack” Lind, 56, is a lifelong resident of Chicago Ridge. He has served as a trustee since 2000 and is the liaison to the youth commission and the youth service bureau. He graduated from Richards High School. He is the former Chicago Ridge public works director, where he served for 36 years and a former Chicago Ridge Park District commissioner. He also serves as a Chicago Ridge trustee.

“I am very proud of the work we do with the youth commission and the youth service bureau,” Lind said. “We have counseling programs. Some kids have single parents who work 12 hours a day, and they are latchkey kids. They need someone to talk tom to vent.”

Lind also started an anger management program for students at Oak Lawn Community High School, and plans to expand it to other high schools in the district this summer.

Lind said the major issue in the township is providing services for the residents.

“Our food pantry has never been busier, and we are so proud of it,” Lind said. “No matter how much food we get in, it goes right out the door. So many people are just one paycheck away from needing help. We are trying to provide that help to them.”

Lind said he is accessible and always calls people back. He echoed other United Party candidates’ concerns over the Community First Party’s proposed rebates for homeowners.

“It is just a way for them to mislead people to think they are going to try to get money back to buy votes,” Lind said.


Michael E. Mahoney, 47, is a lifelong resident of Oak Lawn. He has served as a trustee since 1998 and is running for his fifth term. He is the chairperson of the Worth Township Finance Committee and the clinic and senior services committee. He owns a bachelor’s degree in marketing from Eastern Illinois University works as the senior regional manager for Atkore International, an electrical tubing and metal framing manufacturer.

Mahoney said over the last five years, the clinic has added services, even though the township budget has been reduced by 14 percent. The clinic has added preventative, dental and podiatry care.

“We run the township fiscally responsibly year after year,” Mahoney said. “We’ve kept our budget balanced.”

Mahoney echoed other candidates’ concerns about the proposed rebate.

“It’s only $4.50. That’s a cup of coffee. What are they going to do next year, when they don’t have the money? Borrow money and raise people’s taxes.”

Mahoney would like to see more programs added for seniors in the township, including computer classes.


Kelly Houlihan, 47, has lived in Oak Lawn for 37 years. She earned a secretarial certificate from Southwest Business School. She works as a professional development secretary at the Eisenhower Co-Op special education program.

“I’m running because I want to be more involved,” Houlihan said. “I want to see good programs in the government and I want to see them continue. I don’t want to see good programs get cut.”


Worth Township Community First Party
Richard Lewandowski, of Palos Heights, graduated from Kelly High School. He is the owner of Breaker Press Company.

Lewandowski is running for office because he wants to make a difference, he said.

“After the past 10 years of hearing about pension abuse and lack of performance from our elected officials, I am done sitting around and just listening to it,” Lewandowski said. “I have always been drawn to working in the community I have lived in. This is my opportunity to make a difference at a higher level of involvement.”

Lewandowski has owned his own business since 2001, and said the experience will help him as a trustee.

“I bring the experience of everyday checks and balances that every organization needs,” Lewandowski said.

If elected, Lewandowski plans to bring more exposure to the township.

“One of the biggest issues facing the township is the fact that Worth township government exists, and yet a large majority of the homeowners do not even know if exists, and if they do, they don’t know what the available services are to them or their families.”

Lewandowski said communication between the township and its homeowners was crucial.

“You have an obligation to inform the taxpayers of where their dollars are being spent and how to better utilize the services available,” Lewandowski said.


Eamon McMahon, 47, of Oak Lawn, is a carpenter. He serves as the business agent for the Chicago Regional Council of Carpenters and the Financial Secretary for Carpenters Local 141.

McMahon said the pension problems in the state of Illinois motivated him to run for office.

“I have committed to freeze salaries, impose term limits, and suspend pension contributions on behalf of part-time elected township officials,” McMahon said. “If our pension commitments are to become realistic, the leadership of state and local governments must take tough stands to end pension abuse. Their duty to their constituents is to facilitate solutions, not add to their burden.”

McMahon said he supports teachers, first responders and municipal employees who have earned a negotiated pension during their years of service; but pension abuse has left them in doubt about their future security.

“They earned every penny of their pension and they deserve to know it will be there for them when they need it,” McMahon said.

McMahon said he also supports limiting township service to two terms.

“By limiting township service to two terms, more people become engaged in the solutions to our community’s problems,” McMahon said.

McMahon said growing up in a family of eight while helping to run a small family-run construction business helped prepare him for running for trustee.

“(It) taught me a lot about negotiation, the need to achieve consensus and to examine all sides of an issue,” McMahon said.


Theresa M. Roche, 46, of Oak Lawn, holds a bachelor’s degree in advertising from the University of Illinois and a juris doctorate from the Illinois Institute of Technology-Chicago Kent College of Law. She has served on the board of education for Oak Lawn-Hometown School District 123 since 2009. She is the president of OAR Management, Inc.

Roche said she is running for office because the township needs a new perspective.

“Worth Township is in need of fresh ideas and insights,” Roche said. “Some of the current board was elected in 1997. Although new members have joined them, the lack of changes and updates in the township offices reflect a stagnant board.”

Roche said her business, legal and community leadership experience make her qualified for the trustee position.

“I’ve worked with numerous businesses to make them more productive and profitable by implementing best practices,” Roche said. “I understand the legal aspect of the responsibilities of Worth Township. My experience on the Oak Lawn-Hometown School District 123 board has given me experiences with a well-run board. I pride myself on being collaborative while not being afraid to ask hard questions and make hard decisions.”

Roche said the township needs to offer more services to ease the residents’ burden.

“We can offer the children more programs since so many schools are limiting enrichment opportunities,” Roche said.

Patrick Hanlon, 47, of Evergreen Park, holds a bachelor’s degree in finance from St. Xavier University and a juris doctorate from DePaul University Law School. He works as an attorney with Ungaretti & Harris LLP in Chicago.

“I’m running for one simple reason: taxpayers deserve better,” Hanlon said. If he is elected, Hanlon plans to decline the salary and pension benefits for serving as a township trustee.

“I am running to serve the community as its watchdog on the township board, to ensure that taxpayer revenue is used and allocated efficiently to support township operations and services,” Hanlon said. “It is the taxpayers’ dollars, not the township’s dollars.”




Trooper mourned at Valley Church

An American flag is displayed between a North Palos Fire District truck and a Glenview Fire Department truck outside of Moraine Valley Church, 6300 W. 127th St. in Palos Heights. Cars and emergency vehicles in the funeral procession for State Trooper James Sauter passed under the flag on their way to a crematorium in Chicago Heights. Sauter was killed in the line of duty March 29 when his squad car was struck by a semi-tractor trailer on the Tri-State Tollway

Trooper mourned at Valley Church

James Sauter grew up in Ridge, graduated from Richards

By Laura Bollin

  Hundreds of mourners packed Moraine Valley Church in Palos Heights Tuesday to say goodbye to Illinois State Police trooper James Sauter, who was killed last Friday when a semi-tractor trailer struck his squad car on Interstate 294.
  Family and friends remembered Sauter, 28, as someone who always wanted to be a state trooper and loved his job. Police officers from around the state were lined up outside the church to lead Sauter’s body to a crematorium at 12th Street and Halsted Avenue in Chicago Heights.
  Sauter’s brother, Matthew, spoke to the crowd at the funeral service.
  “He will always be in my heart,” Matthew said. “I will be the brother and son I should have been. I will do everything I can to be like him.”
  Sauter, of Vernon Hills, grew up in Chicago Ridge and graduated from Richards High School. A sign at 127th Street and Ridgeland Avenue in Palos Heights read, “Thank you, Trooper J. Sauter,” and another outside Moraine Valley Church asked people to pray for comfort for Sauter’s family. Flags in front of the church and at the Palos Heights Fire Protection District flew at half-mast.
  Sauter worked with his father, Don, at Complete Collision Care in Crestwood before becoming a state trooper. Complete Collission Care office manager Laura Reeb said Sauter often talked about being a state trooper.
  “He got along with everybody, and we enjoyed having him here,” Reeb said. “He talked about being a state trooper, it was something he always wanted to do.”
  Sauter became a state trooper in June 2008. He recently completed a temporary assignment in air operations and been re-assigned to District 15 as a patrolman.
  Illinois State Police Director Hiram Grau offered his condolences to the family.
  “It is with great sadness that I announce the tragic death of Trooper James Sauter, and on behalf of the men and women of the Illinois State Police, I offer sincere condolences to Trooper Sauter’s family,” Grau said in a statement. “Trooper Sauter left a legacy of courage, honor, and duty, and we will never forget Star 6095. Our hearts are heavy with grief, but they are also strengthened by Trooper Sauter’s brave calling and dedicated service to ISP.”
  The driver of the United Van Lines moving truck involved in the accident did not sustain life-threatening injuries, according to Illinois State Police. He has been hospitalized as a precaution and is answering questions and undergoing tests that will be used in the investigation.
  Sauter was helping a motorist at the time of the accident, according to the Illinois State Police. His squad was stopped on the left shoulder of the southbound lanes on I-294 when the truck rear ended the car, causing both vehicles to burst into flames.
  A memorial page for Mr. Sauter on lets people offer their memories of Sauter and kind words for his family. One of his fellow state troopers, Dan, of Naperville, wrote about his time shared with Mr. Sauter.
  “I’m going to miss giving you a hard time on patrol buddy,” Dan wrote. “I always loved joking with you. I’ll never forget the memories we had and how you would always ask me for advice. I looked at you like a little brother. You will live on in our stories about you. As long as I’m around, the new troopers will hear who Jim Sauter was.”
  Sauter is survived by his wife, Elizabeth; his father, Don; his mother, Eileen; his brother, Matthew; his grandmother, Mary Lou Sauter; and his aunts, Kathleen Stevens, Patricia Duffin, Maureen Curran and Anne Oles.
  Donations to a memorial fund for his wife can be given to the James M. Sauter Memorial Fund, care of Palos Hills Funeral Home, 10201 S. Roberts Road, Palos Hills, IL 60465.

Focus on Seniors

Double Nickel
  The Double Nickel Plus Chorus meets at the Community Center, 3450 W. 97th St. in Evergreen Park, every Wednesday at 9:30 a.m. in Room 111. Newcomers are always welcome. For more information call 422-8776.
Tax Filing Help
  The Evergreen Park Office of Citizens’ Services offers a volunteer tax filing program in Room 110 at the Community Center, 3450 W. 97th St. E-filing and direct deposits are available. Call 422-8776 for an appointment. Counselors are volunteers and are available Monday through Friday from 9:30 a.m. to 3 p.m.
  Assistance with circuit breaker, property tax exemption forms, and notary service is also available. Bring last year’s federal and state returns, bank statements, and all forms showing income including social security, pension, dividends, interest and property tax bill. Business returns and complicated returns will not be accepted.
Rules of the Road
  The Worth Township Seniors will hold a free Rules of the Road class from 9:30 and 11:30 a.m. June 5, Aug. 7 and Oct. 2. Appointment must be made to attend; call the Worth Township Senior Room at 371-2900, Ext. 28. Worth Township Center is at 11601 Pulaski Road in Alsip.
Meals on Wheels
  The Evergreen Park Office of Citizens’ Services offers a Meals on Wheels program for village residents 60 years and older who are unable to prepare their own meals. Meals are delivered Monday through Friday. For more information call 422-8776.
55 and Up
  Palos Hills residents 55 years and older meet from noon to 2 p.m. the second and fourth Wednesdays of each month at the Palos Hills Community Center, 8455 W. 103rd St. Tickets for events must be purchased one week in advance. Entertainment includes musicians, singers, luncheons, movies, plays and bingo.
  The Worth Senior Pinochle club is seeking new members. Membership is free. Visit the group at the Worth Park District Terrace Centre, 11500 Beloit Ave., every Monday and Wednesday from 11:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. Games begin at noon. Call 448-1181 for information.


Whatizit?  Well it seems last week


 Well it seems last week’s “Whatizit?” was a bit of a challenge. The only readers who knew that it was an Easter egg were Virginia Bluck, Mike OShaughnessy, and Theresa and George Rebersky of Worth; and Bella Fruendt of Hickory Hills. Several of you thought it might have been some sort of flower, and one gentleman even guessed it was a satellite dish. Hmmm.
  This week’s clue is: Here’s looking at you, kid. Send responses to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or call us at 448-6161, and don’t forget to include your first and last name and where you live.

Library Notes

Evergreen Park
  Learn to Crochet for adults and teens will be Tuesdays, March 19 through April 30 from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. Beginners bring an H/8 crochet hook; yarn will be provided. All others should bring a current project. Registration required.
  After School Homework Help is offered Mondays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays from 3:30 to 6:30 p.m. Both teachers are bilingual (English and Spanish).
  The Evergreen Park Public Library is at 9400 S. Troy Ave. The phone number is 422-8522.

Green Hills
  A shredding event will be from noon to 2 p.m. Saturday, April 6.
  Green Team Time with Miss Emily featuring themed stories and activities for children 6 to 8 years old will be at 6:30 p.m. Wednesday, April 10.
  The Legacy Girls will perform classic songs such as “Chapel of Love” and “I Got You Babe” at 7 p.m. Thursday, April 11. Cost is $5 per person (paid at registration) which includes membership to the Friends of the Library. Current Friends members are welcome to attend free of charge. Registration required.
  “Life of Pi” will be shown at 7 p.m. Tuesday, April 16. Registration required.

  The Traveling World of Reptiles will be at the library at 6 p.m. Thursday, April 18. Registration required.
  Earth Week in the Teen Center will be April 22 to 26. Among the movies to be shown is “Big Miracle” starring Drew Barrymore and John Krasinski. Inspired by a true story, the film tells the tale of a small town news reporter and a Greenpeace volunteer who are joined by rival world superpowers to save a family of gray whales trapped by ice in the Arctic Circle. Registration required.
  Family Movie Time featuring “Finding Nemo,” popcorn and lemonade for all ages will be at 4 p.m. Friday, April 26. Registration required.
  Summer in Provence with chef Kate Bradley will be at 7 p.m. Tuesday, April 30. Dishes will include zucchini vichyssoise, greens with goat cheese and tarragon vinaigrette, ratatouille, and apricot tart. Registration required.
  The library is collecting Legos to be used in a Lego club that will begin this summer. Bring donations to the library.

  The library offers the eBook platform 3M Cloud Library, and has a touch-screen Discovery Station where patrons can browse and checkout eBooks. Cloud eBooks can be read on most eReaders, computers, tablets and smart phones. Check out a 3M eReader at the circulation desk. Visit to get started.
  The library has an eBook service, Axis 360, through which users can download bestselling eBooks for as many as 21 days directly onto a device using the Blio software application. Titles automatically expire at the end of the lending period and there are no late fees. Place holds on items that are checked out. Service is only available to Green Hills cardholders. To start browsing visit For more information call 598-8446.
  The library is collecting first-person accounts of stories of military service to be donated to the Veteran History Project of the Library of Congress. The library is seeking photos, memoirs, and wartime diaries from World War II, Korea, Vietnam, the Persian Gulf, and the conflicts in Afghanistan and Iraq. Call 598-8446 for more information.
  The library offers Freegal Music, a downloadable music service that provides access to the Sony Music Entertainment catalog. The catalog offers hundreds of thousands of songs in more than 100 genres of music.
  The library’s Media on Demand program enables patrons to download best-selling and classic audiobooks, eBooks, music and video. No late fees. Works include best-selling novels, well-known classics and self-improvement guides. For more information visit

  The library has a scanner available to the public. Pictures, documents, etc., can be scanned and sent to an email, printer or USB device.
  The library offers TumbleBooks!, a collection of animated talking picture books with fiction, non-fiction and foreign language titles, and read-alongs (chapter books with sentence highlighting and narration but no animation). Visit or call 598-8446, Ext. 117, for more information.
  The Green Hills Public Library is at 8611 W. 103rd St. in Palos Hills. The phone number is 598-8446.

Oak Lawn
  Cookies with Caregivers for children 3 to 8 years will be Saturday, April 6 from 11 to 11:45 a.m. There will be stories, crafts and cookies. Advance registration required.

  The Friends of the Oak Lawn Library will see “Oklahoma!” Wednesday, May 15. In-person registration begins Saturday, April 6 from 9:30 to 10:30 a.m. Witness the Lyric Opera of Chicago’s production of “Oklahoma!” Main floor seating. Bus leaves at 12:30 p.m., returns at 5:30 p.m. Cost is $82 for Friends members, $87 for others. Members must present current membership card or receipt to receive discount. Two-ticket limit. Trip is not wheelchair accessible.
  The Friends of the Oak Lawn Library will hold a “Chicago’s Historic Hotels & Tea at The Drake” bus trip Thursday, April 18. The trip will visit Chicago’s historic hotels including the Chicago Hilton & Towers, the Blackstone Hotel and the Palmer House. Tea will be held in The Drake Hotel’s Palm Court. Eat finger sandwiches, fresh-baked scones, sweet breads and French pastries. The afternoon wraps up with a tour of the Gold Coast historic district. Trip departs at 10:15 a.m. and returns at 4:15 p.m. Cost is $77 for Friends, $82 for others. Members must present a membership card or receipt to receive the $5 discount. Two-ticket limit. Trip is not wheelchair accessible.
  The library now offers movie check-out for free. Check-out periods are seven days with no renewals. Oak Lawn residents may check out up to 10 films at a time.
  The library offers “Temporary Online Patron Registration.” Fill out a registration form at oak, and visit the Circulation Desk within 14 days to receive a permanent card. Proof of residency in Oak Lawn is required.

  The library has the newest and most popular titles and resources in its collection of eBooks, Blu-Ray and DVDs (movies and TV series), CDs for a range of music interests, and hard copy books. The library also has a language learning program and databases. During September, new library card-holders will add a leaf to the tree in the Cook Avenue foyer and be eligible to enter a drawing for a book of their choice (one child prize and one adult/young adult prize up to $35 value each). Cards are available to Oak Lawn residents at the Circulation Desk. Bring an ID and proof of address.
  Books, tapes and CDs not found at the library can be requested online from another library. For more information call the Interlibrary Loan department or stop by the Help Desk on the first floor.

  “Images of America: Oak Lawn” by Oak Lawn Library local history coordinator Kevin Korst contains more than 200 photographs with captions and chapter introductions, and highlights the many aspects of Oak Lawn’s history including Round-Up Days and the 1967 Tornado. The book is available for purchase at the library’s Reception Booth for $21.99 (cash or check). Book sales benefit the Oak Lawn Community Library Foundation. A corresponding photo exhibit is on display and features more than 100 historic Oak Lawn images and dozens of artifacts. The display is in the Local History Room on the library’s second floor. For more information contact Korst at 422-4990.
  The library offers “Accessible Archives,” an electronic resource available at Click on the “Research” tab and select the icon for “Accessible Archives.” The collection features historic periodicals and books and provides eyewitness accounts and editorial observations of events, genealogical records, county histories and Godey’s “Lady’s Book” — a magazine published to entertain, inform and educate women of America. The Civil War collection is noteworthy and presents coverage based on various historical perspectives.
  The Freegal music service is available on the library’s website, Patrons may download up to three songs a week from the Sony catalog with their library card. Freegal includes millions of songs and requires no software to install. Files that can be played on any device including iPods. For more information visit
  Recycle “gently used” books, magazines, CDs and videos by donating them to the Friends of the Oak Lawn Library Ongoing Book Sale. The Friends will not accept Readers Digest Condensed Books, encyclopedias or older text books. The donation drop-off area is near the library’s Cook Avenue entrance. Interested parties may fill out a short form at the Reception Booth to receive a tax letter by mail that acknowledges their donation. Hardcover books cost 50 cents each, paperbacks are 25 cents and magazines cost five cents each. Audio visual items are priced as indicated. Funds collected from the book sale support library programming and purchases beyond the regular budget. For more information call 422-4990 or visit

  The Oak Lawn Public Library is at 5300 W. 95th St. The phone number is 422-4990.

  The library subscribes to Zinio, an online magazine stand that enables patrons to read magazines on computers, tablets or phones using web browsers and apps. Must have Worth Library card. Zinio is accessible at

  The library offers Try-It Illinois, which allows access to 300 free databases from more than 40 vendors. Access Try-It at (login and password is available at the library).