DNO Summer Newsleltter

DNO: New school top TIF priority

A new school should be built on the northeast corner of Irving Park Road and Oak Park Avenue as part of the redevelopment of the Read-Dunning TIF.  A new school could help relieve the severe overcrowding at local elementary schools and at Taft High School without taking away resources from the current local schools.TIFs (which stands for Tax Increment Financing) dedicate funding to a specified geographic area by diverting property taxes into a special fund. The investment from the fund into the area is intended to generate more tax revenue in the future. The DNO has met with Ald. Nick Sposato, and he also supports a new school. He said, however, that TIF funding will not cover the entire cost of a new building, so additional funds will need to be secured. In the TIF budget, $47 million has been budgeted for public buildings and improvements. DNO would also like to see the Read- Dunning Conservation Area be put to better use, and any TIF development should be consistent with maintaining that property as open land. Anybody interested in helping to promote the conversation area, please contact the DNO.

Dunning Neighborhood Block Party

All are welcome at the DNO’s second annual neighborhood block party! This fun-filled community event celebrates the hard work of the Dunning kids who participated in the Chicago Public Library’s Summer Learning Challenge. More than 1,000 neighborhood kids explored and soared this summer at the Dunning Branch Library!

Block party events include live music from Todd and the Ten Pins, free snow cones courtesy of State Rep. Rob Martwick, games, raffles, prizes, snacks &
sweets, face painting, and a dress-up photo booth! Join us for an amazing afternoon!
If you are interested in volunteering for this event or donating supplies, please contact Melissa Kaszynski, Manager of the Dunning Branch Library at
(312) 743-0480.

New multi-sport athletic field coming to Dunning in 2016

A new athletic field will be built on the east side of Oak Park Avenue south of Forest Preserve Drive. The proposed new field at the Read-Dunning site will include a multi-use artificial turf field with lighting that will be used for baseball, football, lacrosse and soccer. The project will also include bleachers, a concessions stand, scoreboards, a walking path, bathrooms and a 93-space parking lot.


A $3 million state grant that was awarded years ago must be spent this year or it will be lost. The field will be available for rent to have exclusive use. Otherwise it will be available to the public. Construction is to begin in the fall, and the park will open in summer 2016. Park leagues from Merrimac, Portage Park and Shabbona welcomed the new facility at a meeting held in June at Merrimac Park to take feedback on the design.


Arrive Early for Ferris Bueller's Movies in the Park on Aug. 29

Come out early to get the best seat for a free showing of Ferris Bueller’s Day Off at 8 p.m., Saturday, Aug. 29, at Hiawatha Park. The first Movies in the Park screening of “The Goonies” in July almost filled the viewing area. It was a joy to see the community come out and enjoy the movie as the sun set. Thanks to the sponsors: Ald. Nick Sposato, Circle Gear & Machine Co., Cookie Garden, DRAFT, Forestview Automotive, Hiawatha Park Youth Baseball, Law Offices of Steven M. Shaykin, Mama Luna’s, Miska’s Wines & Liquor, Mr. Beef, Realtor Rose Dante, State Rep. Rob Martwick, Ted’s Auto Clinic, Uno Auto and Vito’s Upholstery.


DNO Banner Beautification a Success

Last year the Dunning Neighborhood Organization turned its attention to ways of enhancing the beauty of our community. From this idea grew the Dunning street light pole banner program. The purpose of the program is to celebrate our community identity and boost the appeal and vitality of our commercial areas.

The organization coalesced to come up with a design and then enlist the talent of a local professional artist to put the elements together to create a modern and distinctive banner. Jessica Ignatowski’s logo forms the centerpiece of the design and is the largest visual element. Other contributions include Kerry Murphy’s "Discover Dunning" catchphrase, Melissa Kaszynski’s window pane layout, and artist Jane Madsen's graphic design and color scheme. Lane Tech student and Dunning resident Kamil Lungu offered a compelling banner design as well.
Thank you all.
We want to thank Alderman Sposato for endorsing the project and allowing us to use the ward office address for mail-in orders. Thanks to the DNO members who visited local businesses to promote banners, particularly Teresa Giannini who sold banners like a champ. And we can’t forget DNO President Ed Bannon for providing organizational resources and Treasurer Jose Cuaresema for his accounting and financial expertise.
As a result we now have 28 “Discover Dunning” banners displayed throughout the Dunning Community Area. You can see them all the way from Irving and Narragansett on the northeast to Belmont and Cumberland on the southwest.
The banner program for 2015 is currently winding down for this year and will resume in Spring 2016. Businesses and residents will be able to sponsor or renew banners at that time.
—Contributed by Phil Garofalo