As the festivities were starting many people had positive, loving thoughts of Richard Soumar who had recently passed on.

Rich was a lifetime North Riverside resident who cared deeply for the village and all its people.  He was the first to try to fix a wrong and was the loudest when dealing with village officials to correct a problem.  

He dressed to fit his beat-up Cadillac but his heart was truly special.  He was my friend and I will always remember how at the library, whenever possible, he would take up two parking spaces so he could open the Caddy’s big doors without hitting other cars.  He always thought of others but in a very unique way!

The Ball was a fund raiser for the Historical Society and was hosted by most of its members led by President Bryant Rouleau in a tux.  The members all did an outstanding job serving and made the atmosphere a total trip back in time.

There were many great masquerades with the Zdarsky ladies, Jim and Debbie Orth, and all others who gave it a shot.  Yet most people came as though they were back at the Melody Mill for a night of fun and dancing.  

Steve Cooper and his orchestra played all the old time dance tunes and were accompanied by a sparky, lovely singer who could still belt out a couple of good hits.

The floor was covered with dancers in their 90s, 80s, 70s, and 60s, all of whom danced like they were all 20 years younger.  Couples in their 50s and 40s barely worked up a sweat.  

The 30s and 20s were aptly covered by Mary and Kathleen from the library both sporting really pretty new dresses.  Kathleen got on the floor and led the dancers in the “Twist,”  — the nineties, eighties, and seventies couples seemed to enjoy the Twist by Kathleen the best.

It’s impossible to mention all those who helped put this together but all in all it was terrific. Thank you all!

To top it off, as my wife Myra and I were leaving, we came across this totally happy, smiling lady sitting on the ledge of the flower bed at the Village Hall entrance gushing with positive energy.  After a few words we realized it was Joanne Kossey of the Landmark who over the years has inspired and made many people very happy!  What a way to end a perfect early evening.

Jim Zak

North Riverside