October 2022 Village Viewpoint

By Mary Jo Viero 
BAPA Executive Director 

It’s sweater weather and time for pumpkin spice everything, and I am beyond excited for my favorite season — fall! Yes, I am one of those people in the commercial who is ready to put on my sweater even though it’s 80 degrees.  

I like to think of fall as a beginning (of a new season) rather than the end of summer. I love the fall décor, driving by Beverly Park and seeing hundreds of families cheering on their teams, and the Halloween decorations all over the neighborhood. The energy of the season reminds me that fall is a season of opportunity with so much to look forward to.  

This October there is a lot to look forward to as we see BAPA’s work come to fruition.  

Our Save the Trees campaign, which we started in March has gained momentum! The committee has been meeting at the BAPA office for months and is committed to helping to preserve our tree canopy and educating our community about the important role trees have in a vibrant community. Our efforts to obtain a grant for trees from Openlands were successful and we will be planting those 50 trees on October 8.  

In addition to those trees, we worked with the 19th Ward Office to get hundreds more trees planted the same weekend. It will be an incredible day for our community as we come together to plant trees. Please join us, the more the merrier! We have also been spreading the word to the community to let people know that if you want a tree planted in your parkway, NOW IS THE TIME TO MAKE YOUR REQUEST.  The city has committed to continue planting trees in our area until the ground freezes.   

The Ridge Park Advisory Council which was formed in 2016 because of the deterioration of the fieldhouse and lack of access to the second floor is made up of neighborhood volunteers. When we started 7 years ago, we never would have imagined it would be such a long process, but we never gave up and we just received the exciting news that the elevator and many other upgrades that we advocated for will be happening. All those people who have never been able to watch their kids’ or grandkids’ basketball games or visit the Vanderpoel Art Gallery or see a performance of the Munroe Theater program will now be able to do that and more. This is the power of volunteer advocacy.  I am so grateful to the RPAC, and the Park District for working together to make this a reality.  

Last but not least, BAPA will present our last Porch Concert for 2022 and it’s sure to be a night to remember. Not only will local favorites Beverly Country Club take the stage, on the block in Central Beverly that has the most BAPA members on Friday, October 14, but we will be celebrating the 75th anniversary of BAPA’s incorporation.  A local resident, Jason Dunneback will be serving food with his new business, Home Plate Catering. We hope you will come to celebrate.  

This issue will reveal the other side of BAPA which is not just events. It’s advocacy and community outreach that goes much deeper; strengthens our community and gets results. 

Cheers to beginnings, working together, and to a great fall! 

Mary Jo  

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