An award nomination, photo contest and PAC talks in park news

JPAC nominated for new award

The Chicago Parks Foundation and Park District have nominated the Jackson Park Advisory Council (JPAC) for their first-ever Park Advisory Council of the Year Award.

The winner of the new distinction will be announced on Saturday, March 28 at the 2015 Park Advisory Council Conference at Truman College, 1145 W. Wilson Ave.

JPAC will receive $500 if it wins. But no matter what happens, president Louise McCurry’s work is far from over: She said she has plans to bring an advisory council to every park in the neighborhood.

“PACs for local parks are crucial,” McCurry said. Because those are the folks who will then take responsibility for making their park work.”

A photography contest for local youth

The Jackson Park Advisory Council is holding a youth nature photography contest.

The group is inviting children ages 10 to 18 to submit a camera or phone photo from any park or playground in Hyde Park and surrounding areas through April 10. The top three winners will receive cash prizes and photos will be on display through May at the Jackson Park field House, 6401 S. Stony Island.

The contest also includes a class with Herald photographer Spencer Bibbs at 9 a.m. on April 9 at Jackson Park’s Darrow Bridge, where applicants may take their photos.

The competition was inspired by the Cook County Forest Preserve’s contest, according to JPAC President Louise McCurry, who said the advisory council will publish a calendar with photo submissions next year.

“A lot of kids do sports, and so we’ve got some venues with soccer and football and baseball to do that. But there are kids who don’t do sports,” she said. “And so another way to get kids out is to have them take pictures.”

All photos must be sent by 7 p.m. on April 10 to, with a name, birth date, phone number, and e-mail address.

Winners will be announced on April 13 at the Jackson Park field house, 6401 S. Stony Island Ave.

An advisory council for the Midway

Midway Plaisance may soon have its own advisory council.

An organizational meeting to form one will take place at 6:30 p.m. on Friday, March 20, at its ice rink, 1130 Midway Plaisance North. Officer nominations and setting group goals are on the agenda.

This is the neighborhood’s second meeting this week to focus on forming a park advisory council, preceded by another on Monday for Spruce Park, 5337 S. Blackstone Ave.

Reported and compiled by JEFFREY BISHKU-AYKUL
Twitter: @jeffhba