Posts

Please Support BAPA’s Work in Our Community

CANCELLED

The pandemic forced the cancellation of BAPA’s major fundraising events – Home Tour, Ridge Run & Memorial Day Parade, and Beverly Hills Cycling Classic Bikes & Brews – eliminating funding sources vital to our operations.

ACCOMPLISHED

Restrictions inspired BAPA to invest our scarce resources into free programs to meet the changing needs of our neighborhood. Here are some of the things we accomplished:

Small Business Support

  • Promoting your business on Instagram webinar with expert Maggie O’Reilly
  • Digital marketing webinar with expert Jason Wiley
  • Business planning webinar with Ivan Ruiz from Beverly Bank & Trust
  • Special business coverage in The Villager

Community Spirit

  • Bike Beverly initiative with online maps of safe local bike routes
  • Support of Divvy bikes
  • Retooled History Mystery Bike Adventure for summer/fall family-friendly games
  • Friday Night Live livestreamed porch concert series supporting local musicians
  • We Love Smith Village vehicle parade
  • Happy Birthday to Korean War vet Rico Miller vehicle parade
  • Remembering Brian Piccolo vehicle parade

Community Outreach

  • Donated Home Tour booties to a hospital in need during COVID-19 treatment crisis
  • Slow Down safe driving campaign
  • Delivered senior meals donated by Franconello restaurant
  • Supported 19th Ward Youth Foundation free meals to area first responders and medical personnel
  • Donated to and supported Maple Morgan Park Community Food Pantry
  • Brought Beverly Bakery donuts to 22nd District police officers
  • Developed BAPA Cares COVID-19 Response resources at bapa.org
  • Co-hosts weekly Free Store with Turpin Cares and 19th Ward Mutual Aid
  • Hosted a job search webinar with expert Megan Connolly
  • Listed local business/restaurant updates to promote shopping and eating locally in weekly enews and The Villager

School and Teens

  • Presented CPS Community Service Awards to students in neighborhood public schools
  • Launched the BAPA Teen Service Corps volunteer group
  • Presented the BAPA Cares pandemic response webinar

Beautification

  • Socially distant spring clean and green clean-ups
  • Weeding Wednesdays at area parks and public areas
  • Pitch in for the Parks special park clean-ups

PLEASE HELP!

As a not-for-profit organization, BAPA depends on donations from residents and businesses to continue working on the issues that keep our community strong, safe, connected and thriving. Support us by making a donation or joining as a BAPA residential or business member.

By Brittany Wiley, BAPA Business Liaison

Customer Service in the Time of Coronavirus

Small business owners in Beverly/Morgan Park are thrilled (yet cautious) about reopening. A few of them share their plans with The Villager.

Belle Up: Safety is in Style

Belle Up, 1915 W 103rd St., is Beverly/Morgan Park’s source for stylish maternity apparel and chic contemporary clothing.  Owner Jamenda McCoy is committed to continuing a high level of customer service through the store reopening.  By taking appointments during the week, McCoy is assuring her customers a better experience.  This allows them to be “diligent about capacities and sanitization,” said McCoy.  “We want even immune-compromised and women in high-risk categories to feel comfortable” coming into the store.  Each surface is sanitized between visits, including any clothing that has been tried on, as well as the fitting rooms.  Customers sanitize upon entry and everyone must wear masks.  Belle Up is also still offering free local deliveries and curbside pickup.  They go Live on Facebook and Instagram weekly where customers can link to the website or DM to shop.  Even if you can’t make it into the physical location, you can still easily snag a summer dress or some elevated loungewear for the home office.  Shop online at belleup.com or follow them on Instagram and Facebook @belleup.  Bricks-and-mortar hours of operation are Mon.-Fri. 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. (by appointment or walk-ins during open spots) and Sat., 12 to 5 p.m. (walk-ins welcome).

Horse Thief Hollow: Crafted Outdoor Dining

The restaurant business model has been constantly changing through the pandemic and Neil Byers has transitioned his business to continue serving our community in any way he can.  Horse Thief Hollow Brewery, 10426 S. Western, served us through the stay-at-home mandate by offering takeout and delivery options for food and craft brews.  Once the new regulations were announced, their work began on an outdoor seating area.  The semi-permanent space on the south side of the building is being designed to create ambience and atmosphere for patrons, all while supporting local artists and businesses.  A fence will enclose the space lined with custom planters by PM Creations and filled with blooms by Olivia’s Garden.  Local artists are covering the asphalt with new murals and updating the current wall artwork.  Patrons will sit along picnic tables and enjoy their beer while chatting at whiskey barrel high tops and listening to music through a new outdoor speaker system.   Every part of the project is well thought-out, with both support to local vendors and customer experience in mind.  Get up there and enjoy a Little Wing by making a reservation for one of their limited indoor seats or on the patio beginning in early July.  www.horsethiefbrewing.com 773-779-2739

 

Everything’s Relative: Luxurious Safety

Joan Each Rowan, owner of Everything’s Relative – Beverly, got ahead of the curve during her closure.  She set out to make her salon beautifully safe and functional through the pandemic.  The salon, located at 10548 S Western, has a new tagline “Safety is the new luxury.”  Glass partitions framed with aluminum now stand between shampoo bowls and stations, which are disinfected between clients.  Hand sanitizing stations and masks are available for every guest.  They will continue to limit the number of people inside while offering haircuts, color, styling and foot treatments.  To book an appointment with one of their talented stylists, visit everythingsrelativesalon.com or call 773-941-6565.

 

 

 

 

Pick Yourself Up: AndySunflower Cafe

Andrea “Andy” Robinson is the owner of AndySunflower Café, which sits inside of Ain’t She Sweet Café at 9920 S Western.  Andy believes “coffee and great conversation is what matters mos.” Although she has had to limit her customer contact as of late, she looks forward to being able to open her bar to two seats spaced to adhere to social distancing guidelines.  Andy will continue to serve her coffee and specialty creations for curbside pickup as well, with a delivery option coming in the near future.  Through the midst of the coronavirus, her ideas (and coffee) didn’t stop flowing.  She is working on some exciting new projects to expand her business: a whole bean coffee subscription and new apparel for the store.  Order a foamy cappuccino or a refreshing Peach Mint Iced Tea online at andysunflowercafe.com or by phone 312-961-3171. Hours: Mon. – Fri., 8 a.m. to 3 p.m., Sat., 8 a.m.to 2 p.m.

 

 

Beverly Records: Vinyl Goes Virtual

Vinyl still lives in this 53 year old record shop owned by the Dreznes family and located at 11612 S. Western.  After being forced to close their physical doors until non-essential retail was able to reopen, Jack Dreznes and his son John decided to take their business virtual.  They launched their live shopping events on Apr. 7. After the success and surprising amount of fun they had, they followed with two more virtual events. John explained that although they had an online platform to sell through, they “missed customer interaction, so using Facebook Live was a great way to get some of that interaction back.”  Their doors are back open now, but they will continue to do their live events. Follow them on Facebook @BeverlyRecordsChicago to hang out, have a beer with the Dreznes’ and buy some rare vinyl at their next Live home shopping event.

History Mystery Bike Adventure 

More Mystery, More Adventure & More Fun for the Whole Family 

As most community events are being cancelled, BAPA is bringing back a retooled, social distancing-friendly version of its popular History Mystery Bike Tour. An exciting way to see the neighborhood, harness sleuthing skills, and get in some active outdoor time with family and friendsnew History Mystery Bike Adventure offers four all new puzzle-solving challenges with some updates, prizes and family-friendly options.  

In its heyday, the History Mystery Tour was held as a one-day family focused biking event, coupled with food and music. For the new version, people will participate on their own using clues and maps printed in The Villager starting this month and available on BAPA’s website.   

As many residents take to the streets on two wheels to enjoy the warmer weather and stay active, the resurrected History Mystery Bike Adventure is an option for families to add some fun to their rides and discover new routes in the community. It is just one of multiple BAPA alternative events being held this summer that allow residents to practice social distancing, but still get out and participate in a community-wide activity 

The new History Mystery Bike Adventure starts pedaling in West Beverly. Every month through September, the series will take residents to a new area of the neighborhood to solve clues using the printed map in that month’s Villager and at www.bapa.org 

Clues will cover a wide range of topics specific to each area of the neighborhood. From architecture and history, to local businesses and everyday sights, residents can spend the summer discovering everything that makes the Beverly/Morgan Park community so unique.  

Once participants have completed the clues, they will be able to solve the History Mystery puzzle. Each month, completed puzzle answercan be submitted to BAPA via email (bapa@bapa.org) with the subject line History Mystery to be qualified for prizes for that month. Prize winners will be randomly selected from the correct puzzle answers received, one entry per family pleaseFuture adventures will take residents to East Beverly in July, North Beverly in August, and Central Beverly in September. 

BAPA encourages bicyclists to always practice bike safety and etiquette when riding. For more tips and recommendations on how to bike safely in our community, check out Bike Safety Information. To get started on the first History Mystery Bike Adventure of the summer, find your map and list of clues here. Good luck! 

Although you won’t be able to win any prizes, you can still get out and explore the neighborhood with the previous months bike maps and clue sheets here: June, July

 

A Message from BAPA’s Board President

By Maureen Gainer Reilly

Unprecedented.

It’s a word that most of us almost never used to use, and now it’s become the word we call on every day as our community, city, state and country respond to the novel coronavirus. It’s a word that has grown to evoke negative connotations, but it is also a word of hope.

As our community has grappled with unprecedented stay-at-home orders, catastrophic unemployment and school closures, we have also stepped up to the plate with unprecedented generosity.  We’ve rallied in support of local businesses, cared for our neighbors and committed to finding a way to be the best parents, workers and teachers we can be every day. We have filled our windows and yards with messages of hope and gratitude for first responders, healthcare and essential workers. We have opened our hearts to people who are struggling through grief, separation from loved ones and isolation. We have embraced who we are as a community and – coming together even as we are apart – created a community that is even stronger and more resilient.

Yes, what is happening around the world and in our little corner of the globe is an unprecedented crisis, but there is also beauty and powerful connection. I love where I live now more than ever before. And I love the opportunity as BAPA Board President to work hand-in-hand as BAPA’s small but mighty staff has responded to COVID-19. They’ve developed comprehensive online resource guides for small businesses and residents, delivered pasta dinners to seniors unsettled by the order to shelter in place, traversed the neighborhood on personal clean-and-greens, organized a car parade that gave hundreds of local residents the chance to lovingly (and loudly!) support Smith Village, and even answered calls for referrals to trusted tradespeople for emergency home projects.

The staff at BAPA has been busier than ever helping our community stay strong and connected during these unprecedented times. But the organization is also facing unprecedented challenges. For the first time in 44 years, there will be no Ridge Run or parade on Memorial Day, and no Home Tour on the third Sunday in May – events that provide critical funding for BAPA. We’re hoping to reschedule for the fall, but there’s no way of knowing when we’ll be able to safely host these events.

We know many of our loyal and generous supporters are hurting right now. People are laid off or have lost jobs, their businesses’ doors have been closed, or their medical bills have been rising. Please know that we are not asking for financial support from our neighbors who can’t help BAPA this year. We are hoping those of you who can support us, will.

Now more than ever before, Beverly/Morgan Park needs BAPA to be keeping our community connected, positive and purposeful during this crisis.

Please join me and my family in making a 2020 membership contribution to BAPA in any amount that’s affordable. If you’re able, considering covering those neighbors who will not be able to give to BAPA this year.  You can use the membership envelope inserted in this issue of The Villager or join online at www.bapa.org. If you have any questions or need more information, please call on BAPA Executive Director Mary Jo Viero, 773-233-3100 or mjviero@bapa.org.

Together, as neighbors helping neighbors, we’ll make it through these unprecedented times to a bright and better future.

 

BAPA’s 7-Day Earth Day Challenge

This month has brought change beyond what any of us could have expected. As we adjust to our socially distant, quieter lifestyles at home, we are focused on the health and well-being of our family, friends and neighbors. However, this month we also will still celebrate Earth Day, and bring awareness to the health and well-being of our planet. To do so, BAPA is hosting a 7-Day Earth Day Challenge that neighbors can participate in from home.  Throughout this upcoming week, BAPA encourages the community to consider ways to reduce their environmental footprint and will be sharing tips, ideas, stories, and initiatives to inspire you to choose green.

Day 1 of our Earth Day Challenge starts TODAY and we are highlighting the prevalence of plastic in our everyday lives. As a planet, we are producing over 300 million tons of plastic every year, 50% of which is for single-use purposes – utilized for just a few moments, but on the planet for at least several hundred years. More than 8 million tons of that plastic is dumped into our oceans every year (Plastic Oceans). According to conservation.org, by 2050 there will be more plastic than marine life in our oceans. For more information on the impact of plastic on our environment and the future of our earth, please watch the Plastic Pollution Coalition. 

Day 1, BAPA challenges residents to conduct a Plastic Audit at home. What plastic items are you using daily? Can they be reused or are they single-use items? What products can be switched out for non-plastic alternatives? Talk with your family and discuss different ways you can eliminate plastic-use within your own home. Visit Dabbling Green for tips on conducting a plastic audit at home and let us know how you are eliminating plastic! Tag BAPA and #bapaearthdaychallenge on social media to share your experience.

The BAPA 7-Day Earth Day Challenge will continue for the next week leading up to an Earth Day virtual celebration on Wednesday, April 22nd with Two Mile Coffee Bar. The full Earth Day Challenge schedule includes:

Thursday, DAY 1: Conduct a Plastic Audit at Home

Friday, DAY 2: Create Earth Day Art / Or Snap a Photograph #beautifulbeverly

Saturday, DAY 3: Pick Your Clean and Green Beverly/Morgan Park Location

Sunday, DAY 4: Unplug- Read Don’t Stream

Monday, DAY 5: Go Plant-Based for 1 Meal

Tuesday, DAY 6: Take a Clean and Green Walk

Wednesday, DAY 7: Make a Plan for your Home Garden and/or Compost Bin

 

 

Eat, Drink and Shop Local

Responding to the coronavirus requires us to maintain a safe distance – not what we’re used to in our close-knit, sociable community. Even from home we can work together to make it through these unprecedented times and stay informed on what is changing and what is needed. Below is a list of Beverly/Morgan Park restaurants offering carry outs & delivery and businesses offering special ways to shop. 

For many of the following businesses, details about their hours and offerings are available on their websites or Facebook pages.

County Fair Foods, 10800 S. Western, is open from 7 to 8 a.m. for senior shoppers only; all others can shop after 8. Countyfairfoods.net.

Southtown Health Foods, 2100 W. 95th St., is open. Reach them on Facebook or at southtownhealthfoods.com. Offering groceries as well as a variety of beauty and healthcare products.

 

Ain’t She Sweet Café, Beverly, 773-840-3309. Carryout and delivery through Grubhub. Details

Beverly Bakery & Café, 773-238-5580. Carryout and Delivery. 7am-2pm Weekdays, 7am-1pm Weekends. Details

Barney Callaghan’s Pub -773.233.6829 – open 3pm – 7pm for curbside beer pickup.  $15 domestic cases, $25 import cases.

Horse Thief Hollow, 773-779-2739. Carryout and free local delivery Tuesday-Sunday 4PM-9PM, 25% off Crowlers on Tuesdays, merchandise available for purchase. Details

Open Outcry Brewing Co., 773-629-6055. daily 11 a.m. to 7 p.m., delivery or curbside pickup. Order 32-oz Crowler cans, kitchen menus items, gift certificates and merchandise. Credit card only.  Details

Swanson’s Deli, 773.239.1197 – open for pickup and delivery 10am – 3pm.  Now offering meal kits along with regular menu and take home meals. Details.

Pizzeria Deepo, 773-840-3087. Carryouts, curbside pickup. Details

Nine One One BBQ Shack, 773-238-9111. No-contact curbside delivery. Carryout. Facebook page 

Top Notch, 773-445-7218. Carryout.

Barracos 95th Street, 773-881-4040. Area locations open 24 hours for carryout and delivery.  Details https://www.facebook.com/BarracosPizza/

AndySunflower Cafe: 9920 S. Western Ave. Accepting mobile, drive-up orders. Details

Manzo’s Burger – 773.779.5945 – open for curbside pickup and delivery – For delivery orders please text your order and address to 773-349-0453. We will be delivering from 95th st. to 127th st. from Pulaski to Ashland  Details

Nicky’s Grill, 773-233-3072. Carry out and delivery. Details and menu

Ken’s on Western, 773-238-0234. Free delivery within 2 miles or curbside pick-up, 4 to 9 p.m. Details

Calabria Imports, 773-396-5800. carry out or delivery. Details

Fox’s Beverly Pub, 773-239-3212. Carryout and delivery, lunch and dinner. Details

Americano’s, 773-941-6787. 11060 S. Western Ave. No-contact curbside delivery and Margaritas-To-Go! Details

Franconello, 773-881-4100.  Curbside pickup and delivery, heat and serve meals and sauces. Wine Delivery Details

Bani’s Beets, 773- 599-9764. Curbside pick up and delivery. Details

Hearty Café, 773-881-1000 carry outs; delivery via Uber Eats, Door Dash and Grub Hub. Details

Two Mile Coffee Bar, 773-614-8115. Available for carry out. Place an order over the phone or through mobile ordering system for rapid pick up. Curbside assistance available upon request. Details

Pizzeria Deepo, 773-840-3087. Pay and order over the phone for curbside pick-up. Details

Retail Specials

Beverly Records, 773-779-0066. Shop via Facetime appointments or in store. Details

Running Excels, 773-629-8587. Shop by phone or by FB messenger. Curbside pickup contactless payment and free delivery within a 5 mile radius. Details 

Turkey Chicago. Shop online or via social media.  Details

Belle Up, 773- 233-2442. Shop online or via social media.  Details

Bookie’s – Chicago is open for shopping online including digital and audio books.

Steuber Florist 773.238.2013 – taking orders 10am-2pm Monday-Friday

Brach’s Auto – 773.238.0606 – All services available, FREE vehicle pickup and drop off, no contact dropbox, vehicle sanitization after service

 

Businesses Temporarily Closed

Beverly Arts Center 

Ohana Ice & Treats

Original Pancake House, 773-445-6100

Capsule Chicago

Starbucks 103rd and Longwood Drive

Health and Fitness

Do Good Movement: Daily adult and children yoga. Details

CORE Fitness and Physical Therapy: Posting daily workout challenges on Facebook: Details

Beverly Barre: Live Instagram workouts: Details 

Beverly Yoga Center: Online classes available: Details

Treadfit: Posting workout challenges on Facebook, Details

Barre It All Fitness, (872) 256-1397, 8-10 online live classes a day Sunday-Monday. For details and a free week visit us Here and click “free trial.”

Fit Code: Unlimited Virtual Training Sessions for 21 days with a donation of your choice. 70% of the donation used to buy gift cards from local businesses and 30% goes to trainers at Fit Code. Details

Dance Gallery 773.445.8910 Streaming workouts and dance classes on Facebook Details

 

Mental Health

Beverly Therapists – 773.310.3488 – offering teletherapy

Begin Within Therapy– offering teletherapy

Mirjam Quinn & Associates – offering teletherapy

C&D Family Farms has made arrangements with a few 95th Street farmers market vendors to distribute their products on their website. Coming soon at cdfamilyfarms.com will be products from Honey and Jam, Feed Your Head vegan meats, Long Table pancake mixes and bread from Breadman Baking.

Eat, Drink and Shop Local

Our restaurants and stores need your business! Purchase gift certificates, order carryout meals from restaurants, shop online. Dollars spent helping our business neighbors helps our community stay strong. BAPA is updating local business info on this page. If you have a business update, please email info to Brittany Wiley, BAPA Business Liaison, bwiley@bapa.org.

Infographic with 25 ways to support small businesses

 

 

BAPA Board Announces New Executive Director

The Board of Directors of the Beverly Area Planning Association (BAPA) today announced that Susan Flood is moving on from the role of BAPA Executive Director to pursue other opportunities and BAPA has promoted Mary Jo Viero to that position.  “It has been a real privilege to be able to give back to a community I love so much,” Flood said.

“Susan has been an outstanding leader for BAPA,” said BAPA Board President Maureen Gainer Reilly.  “We were delighted when she made the commitment to serve BAPA for two years as executive director.  In that time, BAPA has benefited greatly from her knowledge and experience. While we are sad to see her go, we wish her all the best in her next endeavor.”

During her time at BAPA, Flood enacted new procedures and technology to make the office operations more efficient; established valuable new relationships with community partners; expanded the scope of important committees working in the areas of economic development, housing and schools; oversaw projects to manage and improve the BAPA building; and energized engagement with volunteers, organization members, and donors.

“In the two years since I started, I’ve seen an increased awareness, respect and even excitement about BAPA’s role in the community,” Flood said. “It has been an honor and a privilege to get to know and work with the BAPA Board, staff, volunteers and members, and I look forward to continuing to partner in promoting this amazing neighborhood.”

A longtime Beverly/Morgan Park resident, Mary Jo Viero began her service to BAPA as a member and volunteer, then joined the Board of Directors in 2015.  Viero seized the opportunity to join the staff as a Community Organizer in 2016, confident her skills could better benefit BAPA as a staff member.

In that role, Viero helped to launch and elevate programs to connect residents to businesses, including the BAPA Card, Holiday Cookie Crawl, Sip and Shop and Tap Into BAPA; played key roles in planning, execution and development of BAPA’s Home Tour, Ridge Run/Memorial Day Parade, and Beverly Hills Cycling Classic/Bikes & Brews; created opportunities for meaningful community outreach including the New Neighbor program and working with civic associations; spearheaded the Love Where You Live community spirit campaign; and developed and executed “green” initiatives including Openlands Tree Planting grants and organizing community groups for the annual Clean and Green volunteer day at local parks, schools, train stations and institutions.

Before coming on Board at BAPA, Viero was an active member of the National Multiple Sclerosis Society – Greater Illinois Chapter where she oversaw the development and launch of programs targeted to caregiver education, community awareness and fund raising. Viero also led the vision and establishment of the chapter’s Junior Board and served as program leader and president.

As a community activist, Viero initiated the founding of the Ridge Park Advisory Council and serves as president; is a member of the Castle Restoration Taskforce; was active on committees at St. Barnabas Parish; and served as a member of the Executive Board of Beverly Ridge Homeowners Association.

“My motto is ‘Put your passion into action,’ and my goal is to empower our community to do just that,” Viero said. “Together, we can make Beverly/Morgan Park stronger and more vibrant than ever.”

Viero invites people to contact her with questions and ideas. Call 773-233-3100 or email mjviero@bapa.org.

 

Set Your Sights on Ridge Run 2020 

Set Your Sights on Ridge Run 2020 

Sign up by January 12 and save 

Is this the year you do your first Ridge Run?  

Is this the year you beat your personal best time? 

Is this the year you organize a team? 

Is this the year you march in the parade? 

The 2020 Ridge Run and Memorial Day Parade are filled with opportunities for personal challenges, fundraising and just plain family fun.  

The Beverly Area Planning Association (BAPA) invites runners of all ages, paces and distances to participate in the 43rd Annual Ridge Run on Memorial Day, Mon., May 25. Through Jan. 12, take advantage of discounted registration fees when you sign up online at www.bapa.org 

The Ridge Run, long considered Chicago’s favorite neighborhood race, takes participants through the Ridge Historic District for the 10K run, 5K run and walk and Youth MileCheering spectators line the route, offering encouragement, water and energy to the runners. Races start and finish at Ridge Park, 9625 S. Longwood Dr., where little runners compete in the annual Tot Trot and everyone is invited to the post-race festival.    

This year, BAPA will be expanding team sign-up, encouraging people to foster awareness and support for charities, compete for the elementary school Ridge Run trophy, or simply run or walk together as clubs, families or friends.  

For the people and groups that prefer marching, the event features the annual Memorial Day Parade honoring the men and women in the U.S. armed forces who have given their lives in service to our country 

The Ridge Run and Memorial Day Parade are supported by sponsors and planned and presented with the help of volunteers. For more information on how you get involved or become a sponsorcontact BAPA, 773-233-3100 or bapa@bapa,org. 

Grace and Sid Hamper Will Receive BAPA Community Service Award 

By Grace Kuikman 

For the past three decades, Sid and Grace Hamper have been tireless stewards of one of Beverly/Morgan Park’s most cherished institutions, the John H. Vanderpoel Art Association (VAA) collection of 19th and 20th century American art. As lovers of art and their community, the Hampers have committed their outstanding time and talents in abundance, Sid as treasurer, president and now president emeritus, and Grace as a volunteer and curator.     

For their dedication to the Vanderpoel Art Association, the Hampers will be presented with the BAPA Community Service Award at the Beverly Area Planning Association annual Donor Recognition Reception on Thurs., Nov. 14. The by-invitation-only reception also honors BAPA donors giving at levels of $500 and up, and this year will be held in the John H. Vanderpoel Gallery at Ridge Park  

The Hampers were recruited to the VAA through a friend, the late George Ralston, who recognized the talents that the couple possessed and the Association needed.  Ralston was right: the Hampers’ dedication to the VAA has been unmatched.  

Grace, who always had an interest in the arts, joined VAA in 1989, once the couples’ four children were grown. Grace summed up her experience with the VAA as “years of joy.” Through her work at the gallery, she has helped to curate the art, prepare exhibits and help wherever she has been needed. “I’ve met lots of interesting people from the art world,” she said.  

Sid joined the VAA in 1992, following his retirement from a successful career at the Chicago Board of Trade and as a lawyer in private practice. He was a teenager when he started working as a runner at the CBOT, and in the early 1950s became a trader. He is still a CBOT member and served ten years as a director. In 1958, Sid earned a law degree. In addition to this career as a trader, he opened a law practice with partner. He specialized in wills, probate, commodities and security law, and as a qualified trade advisor. Conveniently, the law office was located in the CBOT building.  

Sid’s expertise in finance and law were pivotal in raising funds needed to protect the Vanderpoel Art Association collection in perpetuity. He cultivated donors whose generous gifts made it possible to provide for the future of the collection and to underwrite important art conservation efforts, including the cleaning and restoration of about 30 art works. The VAA continues to preserve art, working with top quality art restorers.  

The outstanding art collection is named for Dutch-born artist John H. Vanderpoel who lived in North Beverly while teaching at the School of the Art Institute. Following the artist’s death in 1911, community residents took up a collection and purchased Vanderpoel’s painting “The Buttermakers.” In 1914 the painting was placed in Vanderpoel School as a tribute to the artist for whom the school – and the street where it’s located — was named. It was later decided that a memorial collection of works would be an even better honor. Vanderpoel was beloved by his students, many of whom were eager to donate their works to the collection.  

Many of the paintings in the collection were donated by artists or owners. “A lot of the paintings were in people’s homes,” Sid said. He explained that the first curator of the collection – John Campbell – would write to Chicago area artists asking them to donate pieces of their work. And they did. Paintings, drawings and sculpture arrived at Ridge Park. The file of Campbell’s correspondence documenting this fascinating aspect of the gallery’s history still exists.  

When the collection had grown too large to be housed in the school’s gallery, a new wing was built on the Ridge Park field house, creating a permanent home for the John H. Vanderpoel Art Association collection.  The collection of what is now more than 600 19th and 20th century works by American artists also grew in reputation. Counted among the artists are Mary Cassatt, Maxfield Parrish, Grant Wood, Daniel Chester French and Vanderpoel, whose work, “The Buttermakers,” is still on display. 

At the gallery almost every day for many years, Sid also dedicated important time to research and myriad other important tasks that illuminate, protect and benefit the art collection Many people – from the community and beyond – recognize the Hampers as the faces of the Vanderpoel collection. In fact, when Chicago Magazine profiled the Vanderpoel Gallery Feb. 2018, Grace and Sid Hamper were interviewed and appeared in the photograph.  

At age 88, the couple is no longer in the Ridge Park gallery every day, but they remain involved as tremendous resources and keepers of the collection’s history.  

“Grace and Sid Hamper have shown an extraordinary and steadfast commitment to the care and preservation of the John H. Vanderpoel Art Association’s art collection,” said Irene Testa, current VAA President. “Their leadership has been crucial to the success of the organization.  We are profoundly grateful for their efforts to preserve this valuable art collection for posterity.” 

For information on how to support BAPA at the Community Support Circle and higher levels, contact BAPA Executive Director Susan Flood, 773-233-3100.  

We’re BAPA Members. Are You? 

BAPA’s work could not be accomplished without the support of our resident and business members. The following people shared some of their thoughts about why making their annual membership donation is an important part of what they do for the community, and for their own quality of life as Beverly/Morgan Park neighbors. You can learn more about becoming a BAPA member on our website https://bapa.org/support-bapa/ or by calling our office, 773-233-3100.  

 

Karen Truitt 

Marquette Bank  

BAPA’s work is good for the neighborhood! BAPA supports the community in countless ways and is a unifying friendly organization that has been instrumental in defining Beverly/Morgan Park as it has evolved over the years. As a business member, Marquette Bank has benefited from the visibility and exposure at Ridge Run & Memorial Day Parade, Bikes & Brews Fest, Family Fun Nights and more. BAPA has been particularly helpful in amplifying our presence as a business by providing social media, and newspaper and online exposure, as well as use of the BAPA community room for our Business After Hours events. 

 

 

Jessica Bell
Bell Advocate LLC 

“Discovering that I could join BAPA as a business member was heaven sent. My primary office is in the West Loop, but as a servicer of many elderly individuals, I quickly saw the benefits of being able to use BAPA’s business center for meetings that were more convenient for my clients. Being a business member also opens up avenues for networking and advertising in my own community on a much more personal scale.” 

 

Ed & Chris Slattery 

Strong neighborhoods don’t just happen.  We give to BAPA and support its events to keep our neighborhood strong and expand our own community of support. We love The Villager and information on areas that need attention as well as news on successes.  BAPA’s events bring neighbors together and help newcomers feel like they’re part of the Village in the City.  Knowing that BAPA that has been working for decades to ensure that our community stays stable, safe and diverse is important to us.  

 

 

Peggy & Ken Gilbertsen 

We used to drive through the neighborhood when we were dating thinking “one day this would be a great place to live.”  It was true then and it is today – 35 years later.  Like BAPA, we saw and felt the sense of community here. BAPA works hard to maintain and strengthen that spirit through activities and programs designed to expand the quality of life we all enjoy. It’s important to remember that our friends and neighbors at BAPA are only able to accomplish this through our personal involvement and financial support. 

 

Howard & Kathryn Ludwig 

BAPA plays an important role in our vibrant community. When people see folks invested in their communities, they feel more comfortable getting involved too. BAPA’s events stand as a showcase of what we can do together. BAPA works for all of us – serving as a glue that holds all of us together by our mutual interest in maintaining the success of our neighborhood. We live in a very special part of the world. Beverly/Morgan Park stands out because of how we all come together to celebrate good times and support each other when times are tough.  

 

Megan & Morgan McGarry 

We are lifelong neighborhood residents, and now reside here with our four children. This community is unlike any other. The people who live here support and love one another. BAPA is such a strong part of our community, which is why we support it. They put on so many wonderful events for people of all ages. BAPA makes it easy to love where you live.  As small business owners, we feel like it is important to support BAPA’s mission  BAPA is constantly promoting local businesses through their social media posts, The Villager and their events. Beverly/Morgan Park has so much to offer and BAPA helps to showcase what a truly amazing area we live in.  

 

Kathy & Tom Gibbons  

BAPA watches out for all aspects of the community. Over the years, it has been instrumental in making Beverly/Morgan Park a strong, successful, vibrant, diverse neighborhood by focusing on housing, schools, public safety and businesses. The organization has worked with our elected officials to instill confidence and pride on our residents. We live in one of the best neighborhoods in Chicago. BAPA’s work requires money. Finances come from homeowners and business owners, and it behooves all of us to give what we can to support the fine work of this proven apolitical organization.  Raising a family and owning a business in Beverly/Morgan Park for most of our lifetime has been a privilege.  

 

Allie Bowles & Graham Elliot 

BAPA is a crucial part of the community. We witness the community growing and diversifying with new exciting businesses opening. We see neighbors supporting one another and creating even stronger bonds. Our family purchased a house in 2010 and never looked back. Our neighborhood is the perfect balance of small community feel but with a calendar of fun, family activities, art/music/culture events, businesses, shops and restaurants. It’s the best of both worlds. BAPA’s support helps all of these activities and businesses to continue to thrive and grow our community. We are proud members of BAPA and the Beverly/Morgan Park neighborhood.