Chicago’s Elevated Railroads

February 25 – 2 pm
La Grange Park Library
555 N La Grange Road
Presenter Jack Doyle, an aficionado and historian of Chicago’s elevated trains, will give a power point presentation using a wealth of archival photos and historical documentation dating back to the 1893 beginnings of Chicago’s elevated trains. Jack skillfully places the development of the Chicago “L” in the context of the times in which it started and advanced. Learn how the elevated trains expanded and improved, how they affected the growth of our area, and the major events including the Columbian Exposition and the Depression played a role in both changes and developments of the “L” system. Why did some routes, like the Westchester Route disappear, while others expanded? Learn too about the colorful characters who invested in the possibilities of a Chicago suburban mass transit operation and of those who ran the day-to-day operations of this new game-changer, one that would help transform the Chicago Region.


January 21  – 2 pm
La Grange Park Library
 555 N LaGrange Rd.
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Speaker: Naturalist and Historian, Jack MacRae
This program is an entertaining look at one of the most truly peculiar tales in the long history of landscaping. The garden gnomes of today have a story that dates back centuries, to a time when the sprawling estates of Britain were home to all forms of botanic and natural exotica, brought together for the sole purpose of artistic expression and garden interest.
So join us and surprise yourself with a little bit of culture, a stretch of history, and a touch of mystery.

Master Gardeners: An Introduction

Saturday, November 4 at 1 pm.
La Grange Park Library – 555 N LaGrange Road
The University of Illinois Extension Service now has 3,200 master gardeners.
The University is once again offering classes in our area – once a week for 11
weeks.  After completing these classes, a master gardener should “feel confident
to develop and enhance community projects related to horticulture, to get involved  in environmental improvements, community & school gardening projects and
horticulture therapy.”
This event is meant to give those interested in the program a chance to ask questions
about what they will learn and what is required of them. Visit their website for


National Public Lands Day
Saturday, September 30 – 1 to 3 pm
Meet at The Prairie House
11225 Constitution Drive, Westchester 60154
Save the Prairie Society will be hosting a workday to help contain invasive plants that, left on their own, could crowd out our native species. Volunteers will be provided with hot dogs right off the grill along with refreshments.
Please bring gloves. Long pants and sturdy shoes advised.
                   Email for more information.  

American Buffalo: Spirit of A Nation

A 55 minute film
Sunday, September 24 at 2 pm
La Grange Park Library
“The buffalo came to America long ago from Asia across the land bridge from Siberia to Alaska. Bison can weigh up to a ton and can stand six feet tall. They numbered in the millions and for many Native Americans were the mainstay of their diet. They hunted only what they could eat and used the hair and bone for their daily needs. But it was the arrival of the white settlers in the 1800s that spelled the end of their magnificent reign. By 1870, hundreds of thousands of buffalo were shipped east each year. Commercial killers weren’t the only ones shooting bison. Train companies offered tourists the chance to shoot them from the windows of their coaches. By 1880, the slaughter was almost over. Only a few thousand remained, sheltered in Yellowstone National Park, a herd from which the Native Americans and activists worked to rebuild the once mighty buffalo nation.”
National Wildlife Federation
Learn also about  three places in Illinois where sizeable herds of bison have become part of the landscape:  Fermi Lab in Batavia, Nachusa Grasslands ( 4,000 acres ), and Midewin. (1,200 acres )
Educational material suitable for children will be available.

All Your Belongings In a Single Trunk

All Your Belongings In a Single Trunk
2 pm, Sunday – July 23
The La Grange Park Library – 555 N La Grange Rd.
Imagine starting a new life with a 19th century voyage.
You would have to make some very critical decisions:
which of your belongings would be crucial to your success in America,
and which items must be abandoned.
Researcher Patricia Reaves has studied news articles, public records,
journals, and even visited museums to unearth some very revealing information to share with us.
Learn too about the amazing trunks that carried this precious cargo –
their different styles, cost, durability, and practicality.
See firsthand an authentic 1850’s trunk.
Sponsored by the Franzosenbusch Heritage Project. Visit Save the Prairie Society’s website.

An Old Fashioned Prairie Fest

Saturday, August 26 from 10 to 4 pm
Main Attractions
JG’ Reptile Road Show 10:30 to 11:30
A Visit from Abraham Lincoln from noon to 4 pm
Hot Dogs, Brats, and Refreshments, 2 Civil War reenactors, basket raffles, a quilt display, a wool spinning demonstration, crafters and vendors, dulcimer players, house, school house, and local history, family genealogy and prairie tours.  An 1850’s immigrant’s trunk will be on display with content.
The vendor form for those vendor who wish to participate is attached here:  Entry Form 2017


Saturday, July 15 at 10 am
Meet at the Historic Prairie House
Join in the fun, and help us find a variety of insects out on the Prairie.Many of these insects are not usually seen in our own gardens.Later, we will identify, study, and release the insects onto the Prairie. Entomologist Mike Rush will lead the hike.
For those who do not wish to go out onto the prairie, there will be an extensive and beautiful insect display on the deck  of the Prairie House. This professional display was designed and fashioned by STPS President Lawrence Godson.
Wear sturdy shoes with long pants and bring a perforated plastic
$5 for adults; children free.
The moth displayed here is an Ailianthus Moth.