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June 20, 2011

Let's Bone Up On Our Park Petiquette!
Cheers and Jeers at Lucy Flower
Get a Piece of the Park
Sell Stuff, Eat Hotdogs
Pimping Their Rides

Let's Bone Up On Our Park Petiquette!
IMAGE: No Dog Poop!We love dogs here in West Bucktown. Big dogs, small dogs, purse-sized dogs – you name it, we think they’re really great.
Except when they’re running amok in our parks.
Officially speaking, dogs are not allowed in any city park that has a playground – and that includes our own Maplewood and Lucy Flower parks. What’s more, dogs are never allowed off leash unless they’re in a specified “dog friendly area”, or else their owners risk a $500 fine.
Here in West Bucktown, it’s always been fairly easy to turn a blind eye to these rules because the vast majority of dog owners are respectful of our parks, generally cleaning up after their furry friends and limiting their visits to the early morning or late evening hours when children aren’t present.
Still, it only takes a few bad apples to spoil the fun for everyone.
It's tempting to just let a sleeping dog lie, but increasingly, complaints are being logged with the Parks District and 1st Ward Office that some dog owners are getting a bit relaxed with their park petiquette. 
We’re certainly not looking to put an end to social petworking in West Bucktown, but this is important -- if you bring your dogs to Maplewood or Lucy Flower park, please keep a close eye on them! And that means not letting them relieve themselves in the wood chips or sandbox or other areas where children routinely play. Or allowing them to romp around in the flowerbeds that Garden Club members so carefully planted. Or worse yet, letting them off the leash when children are present.
If we can’t get this problem under control ourselves, we’ll have to enlist the city’s help with enforcing the rules…which will mean no more dogs in the parks, period. So that's why we’re encouraging all dog owners to work together to increase awareness and diligence on this issue. With just a bit of compassion, cooperation and common sense, Maplewood and Lucy Flower can continue to be a wonderful urban oasis for families and dog owners alike.
And of course, for those times when even the best self-policing efforts fall short, please don’t hesitate to call 311 if you see someone blatantly disregarding the welfare of our children or the safety and cleanliness of our parks.

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Cheers and Jeers at Lucy Flower
IMAGE: Raised Vegetable BedsCHEERS to Greencorps Chicago for installing three raised organic vegetable beds at Lucy Flower park last week!  The Garden Club has already started seedlings to plant in the beds and will be creating a system to cover everything to keep animals at bay. Weather permitting, the next Children’s Garden Club meeting is this Saturday, July 25 from 11:00 am to 1:00 pm.

And JEERS to whoever drove up in a truck under the cover of darkness last month and made off with $150 worth of newly constructed flower boxes at Lucy Flower. The boxes were a labor of love from West Bucktown residents Ryan Van Wyck, Amy Ewaldt and Chris Grabowski, who poured their personal sweat equity into the project. The boxes that weren’t stolen have since been secured to the fence and staked into the ground, making it harder for would-be thieves to walk off with them. And another round of construction is planned for later this summer to replace the stolen boxes. If you have any information at all about this disheartening incident, please call the Alderman’s office!

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Get a Piece of the Park
Summer doesn’t officially begin here in the Northern Hemisphere until tomorrow, June 21 at precisely 1:16 p.m. But someone forgot to tell the weeds in Maplewood Park!  They’ve been growing like…well… like weeds for weeks now! 
This year, a new "Adopt-a-Plot" initiative is being organized at Maplewood that will enable friends and neighbors to band together to keep the weeds under control. In this new spin on the traditional community garden concept, volunteers will be responsible for the upkeep of a small assigned section of the park.  This will help make short work of the otherwise daunting task of keeping the park weed-free and thriving all summer long.

For more information or to adopt your own piece of Maplewood this summer, please email

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Sell Stuff, Eat Hotdogs
IMAGE: HotdogShow your support for the Maplewood Lucy Flower Parks Advisory Council (MLFPAC) and clear out your closets or garage at the same time! The annual West Bucktown Yard Sale and BBQ will be held at Maplewood Park on Saturday, July 16 from10:00 am to 3:00 pm
The yard sale is open to West Bucktown residents and non-residents alike. For a nominal $25 fee (which directly benefits MLFPAC and the many park programs it supports) you get an assigned 10 ft. x 10 ft. area within the park to sell your stuff. This is a rain-or-shine event, and sellers are required to bring their own tables, chairs, supplies, etc. To reserve your spot today, send an email to Cash payment is due the morning of the sale. 

Don't have anything to sell? If you’re in the market for a great bargain, you’ll definitely want to stop by the Yard Sale and check out what folks are unloading. And while you’re at it, make sure to enjoy a hotdog or two on us! The WBNA will be grilling up free doggies for all, while supplies last. This family-friendly event promises fun for all, including face painting and tattoos for the kiddos!

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It’s that time again…time for another night on the town with fellow West Bucktowners! And this time around we’re taking the party to 90 Miles, a BYOB café at 2540 W. Armitage serving up authentic Cuban cuisine. Join us as we raise a glass to yet another area restaurant -- just make sure to bring a bottle (or two) to share with your neighbors and new friends! Please RSVP to to let us know to expect you.

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Pimping Their Rides
IMAGE: Bicycle WinnerCongratulations to 7-year-old Sierra Ramirez for winning one of two grand prizes at the April 16 WBNA Easter Egg Hunt at Maplewood Park. Sierra is now the proud owner of a brand-new sparkly pink and purple bicycle! Watch for her as she begins to wheel her way around West Bucktown!

We're also asking for everyone's help in delivering our second grand prize to 4-year-old Brian Arcos of the 1600 block of N. Talman. Brian also won a bicycle at the Egg Hunt, but our attempts to deliver it have proven unsuccessful so far.  If anyone has a phone number or email address for Brian's family, or knows of any other way to get in touch with them, please email us so we can make sure he gets his prize.

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Visit Us At:


Mark Your Calendar!

Wednesday, June 23 @ 6:30 pm
Maplewood Park Clubhouse


Saturday, June 25 @ 11:00 am
Lucy Flower Park
Campbell & Moffet

Wednesday, June 29 @ 6:30 pm
Wicker Park Arts Center
2215 W. North Ave.
NOTE: Meeting subject to cancellation if no proposals are submitted.


(West of Rockwell)
Wednesday, July 13 @ 6:30 pm
Salem Good News Bible
2038 N. California


Thursday, July 14 @ 6:00 pm
Thursday, August 18 @ 6:00 pm

Wednesday, June 29 @ 6:30 pm

Wicker Park Arts Center
2215 W. North Ave.
NOTE: Meeting subject to cancellation if no proposals are submitted.

Tuesday, August 2 @ 5:00 pm 
14th District Parking Lot
2150 N. California

Date TBD
"Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother" by Amy Chau

Every Wednesday @ 3:30 pm 
Email Angela for details.

WBNA is the catalyst for positive change in West Bucktown. We serve the neighborhood bounded by West of Western, East of California, North of North Avenue and South of Armitage.

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