Monthly Archives: November 2014

Thirty Years and Still Trotting in Elmhurst

In 1983, Dan Gibbons was listening to a radio talk show highlighting the large numberracestart1980 of people going to bed hungry every night. Moved to action, Dan got involved with Schwartz’s Good Neighbor Food Drive. Dan and a group of friends decided they could do more and decided to try a 5k race, as these types of events were becoming popular fund raising tools. Since Gibbons had the most time to devote to the project, it was named after him.

TurkeyTrot2013_PSA-300x252So the very first Turkey Trot happened on Thanksgiving Day, 1984. With hand written numbers and a race that was just a little over 2.5 miles, Gibbons used his car’s odometer to lay out the course. With just 74 participants and no sponsors, the first effort raised $520, which was given to Schwartz at the 2nd annual Good Neighbor Food Drive.

The following September, Gibbons was asked if he was going to do the trot again. Gibbons said they needed sponsors to make it happen and before he kniew it, the first $250 sponsorship came from the Elmhurst Police Benevolent Athletic Association.

Turkey Trot long InviteThe subsequent trots were exponentially more successful, with the number of runners increasing from 74 to 232 the next year  to 407 runners in the third and 636 in the fourth. In 2013, the Dan Gibbons Turkey Trot had 8,685 runners and this year has over 50 sponsors, including LW Reedy. As in the past, LW Reedy is hosting a watch party, complete with a DJ and hot beverages. Everyone is welcome to stop in and enjoy the fun.

race runnersThe Dan Gibbons Turkey Trot has raised over $2.65 million and keeps all proceeds within DuPage Country. This money has supported many organizations including DuPage Pads, United Community Concerns Association, People’s Resource Center, West Suburban Community Pantry, Loaves & Fishes, and Catholic Charities. In addition to the financial good the trot provides, the Dan Gibbons Turkey Trot gives families an event that perfectly illustrates the true spirit of Thanksgiving.

Tuxedo Park: From Battleships to Train Depots

Tuxedo Park MapThe Tuxedo Park subdivision sits between York Street and Poplar and from the Prairie Path to Crescent. The Prairie Path was originally the right of way of The Aurora Elgin & Chicago Railway (later renamed the Chicago Aurora & Elgin). The train ran through Elmhurst with originally two stops at Spring Road and York Street. When Crescent Park and Tuxedo Park were being developed in the late 1920s, the City Council asked to build a third station on Poplar Avenue, which opened in 1931. Until it shut down in 1957, the railroad provided “fast, frequent and electrified service” because of the third rail it used for power. When the tracks were abandoned, Mary Theilgaard Watts, a noted author and naturalist at Morton Arboretum, suggested using the abandoned right of way as a nature trail. Currently the 40-mile Prairie Path connects thousands of acres of forest preserves throughout DuPage County. USS Kearsage underway during the early 1900s

USS Kearsage underway in the early 1900s

Tuxedo Park was developed in the 1920s by George M. Collins during a period of expanding boundaries for Elmhurst. Mr. Collins named Tuxedo Park after an area in New York popular with wealthy people for hunting and other entertainment. He named many of the streets after battleships from the Civil War and World War I. Colfax Avenue, Cambridge Avenue, Cayuga Avenue and Niagara Avenue were all named after battleships. Kearsage Avenue was supposed to be named after the Kearsarge, a Civil War ship named after a mountain peak in New Hampshire, but a printing error by the city established Kearsage Avenue as a typo for the ages. One of the main streets that runs through this neighborhood is Vallette, named after an early family in DuPage County. James Vallette is listed as a surveyor for the 1904 DuPage County Atlas in the Elmhurst Hisorical Musuem.

StilChicago Great Western Depotl standing is the Depot at 511 S. York Street, which served the Chicago Great Western Railway from 1887 until 1968. The Elmhurst Park District purchased the depot in 1971 with plans to renovate it and build a park named Wild Meadows Trace. (A trace is a path, trail or route.) In 1976, citizens of Elmhurst donated money to build a fountain in this park to commemorate our nation’s Bicentennial. The fountain was designed by landcape architect, Dan Schourek and the Bicentennial Fountain and Bicentennial FountainDepot were dedicated on July 5, 1976 as part of a three-day Bicentennial celebration.

The homes in this subdivision currently start at $300,000. If you are interested in looking at homes in this or any of Elmhurst’s unique neighborhoods, call a knowledgeable realtor at LW Reedy.

Residents of this neighborhood are in the award winning Elmhurst School District 205 and would attend Jefferson Elementary Grade School, Sandburg Middle School and York High School. Click here for more information on those schools, links to school reports and more.

Special thanks to Nancy Wilson of the Elmhurst Historical Museum for her help and support. Pictures were provided by the Elmhurst Historical Museum except for the Kearsarge which can be found at

The View from 101 York – November 2014

LW Reedy has been serving the Elmhurst community and surrounding areas since 1951. As the largest locally-owned real estate agency in Elmhurst, we have a passion for local news and events. Here’s our view of the community for this month, from our perch at 101 York in the heart of downtown Elmhurst.

conservatoryNovember 1 through November 30, 2014

Fall Flower Show at the Conservatory
Stop by the Wilder Park Conservatory any day in November from 8:00 am to 6:00 pm and see the beautiful fall flowers. Admission is free.

November 5, 2014pads

DuPage Pads’ 12th Annual Inspirational Breakfast

Wake Up Your Spirit at the DuPage Pads fundraising breakfast featuring guest speaker Jarrett Payton, son of Walter Payton. All proceeds support homeless families and individuals.

November 6, 2014

Sports and Faith: Chicago Bears’ Pat McCaskey

bears logoPat McCaskey, Chicago Bears board member and the Bears’ senior director of special projects, will talk about the connection between Sports and Faith in the beautiful Hammerschmidt Memorial Chapel at 1:30 pm. Admission is free and open to the public. Hammerschmdit Memorial Chapel is located at 190 Prospect Ave., Elmhurst.

November 10, 2014

Veterans Day Breakfast at York High School
On Saturday, November 10, the York Student Council will serve a free breakfast to American veterans and their families from 9:00 am to 11:00 am in the York High School cafeteria. Those interested in attending the breakfast should contact Student Council Advisor Matt Moran and tell him how many people will be attending. Send an email to or call 630-617-2400, ext. 7285 and leave a message.

November 14, 2014

Fund Raiser for The Elmhurst Yorkfield Food Pantry

Jackson Teachers and Staff are hosting a fundraiser to support thFood Pantry Logoe Elmhurst Yorkfield Food Pantry at Doc Ryan’s Bar and Grill from 3:30 pm to 9:30 pm. Doc Ryan’s is located at 490 South Spring Road in Elmhurst . A donation of $25 will be collected at the door and appetizers will be provided. Funds will be used to finish paying for a new building for the Pantry. Please bring friends, family and neighbors to support the Elmhurst Yorkfield Food Pantry.

November 22, 2014

Kontras String Quartet Concert

event_contras_quartet_storyElmhurst native Jean Hatmaker and the Kontras Quartet will present a concert at Irion Hall, Buik Recital Hall at 1:30 PM. The program will include works from Beethoven, Tchaikovsky and Turina. General admission is $20, but the concert is free for Elmhurst College students, faculty and staff. Please contact Jean Hatmaker via email at for more information.

November 22, 2014

Lapidary Day

From 10:00 am to 4:00 pm the Lizzadro Museum of LapDayLapidary Art will present demonstrations by West Suburban Lapidary Club artists including beading, silversmithing, cabochon cutting, wire wrapping and faceting, in addition to free hands-on activities and jewelry cleaning. The event is a great way to see the Museum and learn more about lapidary art. Admission is free. Please call (630) 833-1616 for more information.

November 22, 2014

The 31st Annual Dan Gibbons Turkey Trot

Proudly sponsored by LW Reedy, the Dan Gibbons Turkey Trot is a 5K fun run for the dangibbonsturkeytrotwhole family that has raised money for DuPage Pads, United Community Concerns Association, People’s Resource Center, West Suburban Community Pantry, Loaves & Fishes, and Catholic Charities. Registration is open and costs $30 before noon on Nov 26th.