Brookfield Library expands online programs

While in-person library services are on hold due public health orders, Brookfield Public Library is offering virtual classes and events. 

Beginning the week of April 20, the library will offer both live and on-demand virtual programming for all ages.

Most youth activities will be presented live on the library’s Facebook page at Events include literacy classes and Geek Labs, as well as special events like Zumba for Families and Mammals & More. Youth Services will also host a weekly sidewalk art challenge on Sundays. Each week’s winner will receive a gift card to a local business.

Adults can participate in programs by signing up for events hosted on Zoom, including Chair Yoga on Thursdays at 11 a.m.; Harnessing Instagram as a Marketing Tool on April 24 at noon; and Chicago: True Stories of the 1920s (available on Vimeo beginning April 27.

A complete listing of virtual programs, including access information, can be found at on the Brookfield Public Library’s website.

Let’s put on a show – online

16th Street Theater in Berwyn is offering free online classes for kids and teens taught by Michele DiMaso, where kids will rehearse and perform an original play. 

Participants will work on presenting an audition monologue, analyzing the script, working on relationships and character development. The class will culminate in a Zoom performance of the play.

The sessions, via Zoom, are once a week for four weeks. Kids 10-12 are on Wednesdays from April 22 to May 13. Kids 13-17 are on Thursdays from April 23-May 14.

Register at the 16th Street Theater’s website.

Brookfield Zoo hosts Virtu-Whirl

During the state’s stay-at-home time of uncertainty, the Chicago Zoological Society’s largest annual fundraising gala, the Whirl, is going virtual. The public can “attend” from the comfort of their own homes, with no need to worry about a tux or gown.

This year’s event, Rain Forests of the Virtu-Whirl presented by the Women’s Board and Board of Trustees, will consist of an online auction. 

Beginning April 23, at 5 p.m. and continuing through April 25, at 9 p.m., the public can bid on a variety of auction items or contribute with a monetary donation as in a paddle raise.

Auction items range from opportunity to name and meet a 3-month-old two-toed sloth to a one-week stay in St. Lucia, tickets to Jimmy Buffet and James Taylor concerts, a Versace bag, sports tickets, dinner for 10 at Francesca’s Restaurant Group and more.

Proceeds from Rain Forests of the Virtu-Whirl support the care and welfare of the animals at Brookfield Zoo, as well as the society’s conservation, education, and research programs.

Registration, which is required to participate in the Virtu-Whirl auction, begins on April 22. To register and for further information, visit the Chicago Zoological Society’s website.

Teddy Bear Hunt and Picnic

North Riverside Parks and Rec invites kids to shake off cabin fever by participating in a village-wide Teddy Bear hunt through April 30.

While you’re out taking a drive or walk around the neighborhood, keep an eye out for stuffed animals or cutouts in windows of homes and anywhere else they might be. Who knows, maybe you’ll see some on street signs.

Take photos and share them in the comments of a post that will be shared on the department’s Facebook page.

On April 23 at 10 a.m. have a picnic at home with your favorite stuffed animals and share the photos in the comments under the department’s Teddy Bear Picnic Facebook post.

And more

  North Riverside Public Library is offering the following virtual programs through Facebook Live, conference calls and the teleconferencing app Zoom. Programs include Talented Tuesdays every Tuesday at 5:30 p.m. via Facebook Live on North Riverside Public Library’s Facebook page; Whatcha Readin’ and Watchin’ Wednesday every Wednesday at 7:30 p.m. via Zoom; Game Night Fridays every Friday at 7 p.m. via Zoom; and Seated Tai Chi Moving Meditation via Zoom on April 27 at 6:30 p.m. RSVP to for all Zoom meeting access info.

  Riverside Arts Center offers Boredom Buster Boxes to give the kids some hands-on fun. Each box contains 6 pounds of clay, a scoring tool, a sponge, six underglaze colors, a slip, a paintbrush and project and instruction sheets. Order online and RAC will deliver the boxes to your front porch (no contact). RAC delivers to Riverside, North Riverside, Lyons, Brookfield, Berwyn, LaGrange, Oak Park, Austin and Belmont Cragin. Boxes are $36 members/$40 non-members. Order by clicking here.

If you hold a Riverside Public Library card, you can delve into your family tree using for free during the month of April. Get started at The library also offers virtual programs for adults, including Mindful Meditation on Zoom on April 23 at 9 a.m. and Knitting Club on Zoom on April 27 at 7 p.m. Visit the Riverside Public Library website to register and get access info. 

 Lucky Plush Productions, the contemporary dance ensemble founded and directed by Riverside resident Julia Rhoads, invites you to celebrate its 20th anniversary during a virtual party planned for May 22 at 7 p.m. Tickets begin at $25 and can be purchased at the Lucky Plush Productions website. A link to the party will be sent by email prior to the event.