It has been two short years since the North Riverside Historical Society was formed under the direction of Village Clerk Dr. Queenella Miller, and in that span of time their numbers have grown and their activities increased.
Their first major event took place in 2011 and its success called for an encore. This year the society will host a Red Carpet Gala on Saturday, Aug. 11 from 4 to 7 p.m. at the North Riverside Village Commons, 2401 Desplaines Ave., which will be reminiscent of the Melody Mill Ballroom once again.
The site is actually where the famed ballroom once stood before being torn down to make way for another era in the history of North Riverside. Those who attended last year will remember hearing a live band and watching couples ballroom dancing. This year the format will be similar, with the strains of the Steve Cooper Orchestra playing music from the 1920s to the 1950s for your listening and dancing pleasure.
The event is a fundraiser as the historical society has been working to restore the large sign from the Melody Mill, and since the cost of the restoration is more than $35,000 a raffle will be held. Last year there was quite an array of great prizes to be won.
The North Riverside Historical Society is also seeking artifacts, memorabilia or anything pertaining to North Riverside history. Pictures of the village are of particular value, as are early newsletters or information relating to Mater Christi Parish, Komarek School or the Presbyterian Church.
How many people remember the TB Sanitarium being located in North Riverside? Or Concordia College? It wasn’t always the mall you know!
Do you remember Walter Baltis as one of the prime developers of North Riverside? And what was Fred Wilson most noted for? He had the golf range on Desplaines right near the railroad tracks and he was one of the founders of the North Riverside Little League.
If you have any recollections of North Riverside write them down as they are a part of the history of the village. Help the North Riverside Historical Society preserve the past and document today for the present and future generations.
Tickets for the event are $25 or $23 apiece for tables of eight and may be obtained by calling Dr. Miller at 447-4211.