Illinois artist of the month: Jessica RosengardChicago native Jessica Rosengard is a photographer who enjoys taking pictures of just about anything that is in her path. Many of Rosengard’s photos are of places in and around Chicago. Her goal is to take a new approach to color, light and contrast in the hopes that people will share the passion and spread the beauty of each unique view.

When not taking pictures, Rosengard stays busy as the owner of a graphic and website design business. She also enjoys utilizing her creativity to work in different art mediums.

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National Park Service celebrates its 100th anniversaryThe National Park Service celebrates its 100th anniversary this week, and Illinois is home to five properties that fall under its stewardship.

The Lincoln Home National Historic Site in Springfield  has been overseen by the National Park Service since 1972. The only home President Abraham Lincoln ever owned was visited by more than 230,000 people in 2015. He and his family lived there from 1844 until 1861 after his election to the presidency.

•    Click here for a list of upcoming events at the Lincoln Home neighborhood to celebrate the National Park Service’s centennial.
One of the newest additions to the National Park Service is the Pullman National Monument in Chicago. Also known as the Pullman Historic District, the area was the nation’s first planned industrial community and was where the Pullman sleeping car for trains was produced. The district became part of the National Park Service in 2015.

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The Honeycomb Project is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization with a focus on family volunteering.

As parents, finding time to volunteer can be hard with a busy schedule and wanting to spend time with children.

But what about accomplishing both at once?

Volunteering with children strengthens families as they bond through contributing to the community. The Honeycomb Project in Chicago specializes in doing just this.

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Photo Courtesy of University of Illinois at Springfield Athletic DepartmentTalon Supak’s junior year at the University of Illinois at Springfield ended on a high note this spring.

He became the first individual UIS student to qualify for an NCAA Division II National Championship Tournament and represented the UIS Prairie Stars at the NCAA Division II National Golf Championship in Denver in May.

Supak was born and raised in Washington near Peoria. He lived in Japan for three years until his sophomore year of high school, when he moved back to Illinois to play high school golf and earned a college golf scholarship.

Supak chose UIS because of the opportunity it provided him to play the highest quality competition available to him, but he also understood the importance of a quality education.

“The academics of the school were very enticing since I would be able to earn a U of I degree,” he said.

Supak enjoys UIS because of its size and class offerings.

“I am able to know and communicate with most of my classmates,” Supak said. “The faculty also respects and understands that I will miss class due to golf tournaments and they ensure that I am able to complete my assignments and keep up in class.”


Supak became the first golfer to qualify for nationals by winning his regional championship in Michigan in early May.

“It was a huge honor to represent UIS at the National Championships,” he said. “To be recognized as the first of what will be many teams and individuals to make it to nationals is a great privilege.”

As a lifelong resident of Illinois and a golf enthusiast, Supak said he has come to appreciate the state’s unique weather and seasons.

“My favorite thing about Illinois is the vast type of weather that we receive each season,” he said. “Applying specifically to golf, I felt that I have become a better player since I have played in all types of climates.”

After he completes his bachelor’s degree, Supak plans to remain at UIS for another year to take enough classes to be able to sit for his Certified Public Accounting exam. But after his education he would like to become a professional golfer.

Photo Courtesy of University of Illinois at Springfield Athletic Department

Illinois park of the month: Millennium Park

Millennium Park is a state-of-the-art public space in an urban area that showcases why Chicago is one of the world’s greatest cities.

Whether you’re a Chicago resident or a tourist, Millennium Park is a place you need to visit. Located in downtown, the park is an epicenter for entertainment, art exhibits, family fun and impressive architecture and landscape design.

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