Block parties offer fun for Clarendon Hills neighbors
Grace Purdy, 10, paints face paint on Mia Sullivan, 4, during a block party outside their homes in Clarendon Hills. | J.Geil ~ For Sun-Times Media
Updated: October 14, 2012 12:24PM
Clarendon Hills — The north and the south once again worked together Sept. 8 to create an afternoon and evening of fun for those living around Golf Avenue and Jane Court.
The annual Golf Block Party even had a live band and a bags tournament added to the mix this year, as about 110 people took advantage of a nice day to spend some time with neighbors.
“There used to be a block party for those living north of Norfolk (Avenue) and for those living south of Norfolk,” said Cindy McMann, who moved to Clarendon Hills in 2000 and took her turn this year as the block party’s main organizer.
McMann said there never has been a civil war between those living north and those who reside south of Norfolk Avenue. It just made sense several years ago to combine efforts for one block party for the entire neighborhood.
“We usually take turns, between north and south, having someone in charge,” McMann said. “It’s kind of expanded over the past few years; we’ve had more people coming from nearby streets.”
The Golf Block Party is one of 14 for which Clarendon Hills village staff received a required application in 2012. Applications to host block parties, which have no fee, are available on the village’s website, www.clarendonhills.us.
“The 14 for this year is pretty typical of what we usually have,” said Cheryl Pierce, who works for the village as an administrative assistant. “The only difference this year is that July and August usually are pretty heavy for people submitting applications, and some people stayed away because of the heat this year.”
Pierce said another block party is scheduled for Oct. 13 at Waverly Avenue and Rose Place.
“The only thing we don’t want is to have too many on the same day,” Pierce said.
She said both the Fire and Police departments in Clarendon Hills often are available to stop by block parties.
“For me, life is getting so busy; you don’t have time to catch up with your neighbors,” McMann said. “It’s also a great way to incorporate new neighbors. I found it very helpful when I moved in.”
McMann said the Golf Block Party has been conducted the past three years about a week after Labor Day.
“It’s been the best turnouts we’ve had because more people are around at that time,” she said.
McMann said the Golf Block Party has expanded over the years to include more activities.
We start now with a bike parade for the kids, and we always have the Fire Department come out,”McMannsaid. “They let the kids squirt the hoses and climb the ladder.”
McMann’s daughter, Rachael, 15, said she still looks forward to the block parties in her neighborhood.
“It’s still fun,” she said. “I don’t get to see a lot of the neighbors during the year, so this is a good time to see everyone. I think most people around here look forward to it. It doesn’t get uncool.”