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Forest Preserve Partners Recognized for Volunteer Efforts

Photo for: Forest Preserve Partners Recognized for Volunteer Efforts

From left: Forest Preserve Board President Laurie Summers; Pieces 'n Patches Quilt Guild members Candy Rush, Donna Gurley, Kay Opilka, Joyce Schneider and Barb Zerth; and Forest Preserve Chief Operating Officer Ralph Schultz. (Photo by Glenn P. Knoblock)

A Frankfort church and a Steger quilting guild received Appreciation of Partners awards during the Forest Preserve District’s March 14 Board of Commissioners meeting.

Forest Preserve Board President Laurie Summers presented the awards to St. Mary's Catholic Church and Pieces 'n Patches Quilt Guild for volunteer work performed in 2018.

St. Mary’s was honored for restoration efforts performed by parishioners at Hickory Creek Preserve.

“St. Mary’s first approached the Forest Preserve two years ago in search of an area to give back to in their community and found a volunteer site steward at LaPorte Road Access eager for assistance,” Summers said. The “extra hands” offered by the church volunteers helped produce “amazing results” at the site, she added.

“Our natural resource management work group has now added this site to its management schedules, in part, because of the work being done by St. Mary’s Parish, and we are proud to present them a 2018 Partnership Award,” Summers said.


Parishioner and volunteer Jackie Bueschel, who accepted the award on behalf of the church, said the volunteer work was part of St. Mary’s fall Day of Service, which involved activities throughout the community. “I’d like to thank all the volunteers, but most of all I’m so inspired and impressed by the Forest Preserve volunteers who work regularly … at that site,” she said.

The Pieces 'n Patches group was recognized for the volunteer docents it provided during the Forest Preserve’s summer “Inspired by the National Parks" quilt exhibition. The guild’s 21 members filled every volunteer time slot and provided 151 hours of service sharing quilting information and assisting exhibit visitors.

“They showed great interest in what was happening at the Forest Preserve, promoted all of our programs and became great ambassadors,” Summers said. “We received great feedback from the public that the quilters really added to their experiences.”

The group surpassed expectations “and were truly a joy to work with,” Summers added.

“We really enjoyed it,” said guild President Donna Gurley. … (And) we are very thankful for the award.”

Guild members also attending the board meeting were: Candy Rush, Donna Gurley, Kay Opilka, Joyce Schneider and Barb Zerth.


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