Glen Grove Community Project
September 2023: Stories of Tradition
The Spirit of Tradition
I grew up going to the Backlot Bash with my family and then with friends and same-age cousins as I got older. Seeing the signs all over town about the Backlot Bash meant that summer was coming to a close and that I needed to go school supply shopping.
This year was the first year I got to play an active role in the Backlot Bash as an art vendor. As I was selling my Skokie postcards and resin wares, I got into discussions with people about the history of Skokie and about the random cutouts of Charlie Chaplin all over the fairgrounds. It surprised me that most people didn't know the reason for the celebrations and traditions surrounding the Backlot Bash.
Why did they even call it a "Backlot Bash?"
The Backlot Bash is named after Skokie's history as a backlot for movies. In the early 1900s, old Western movies were filmed along the streets near where the Skokie Theater now stands. Even in the 1980s, parts of Skokie were locations for films, including the movie Sixteen Candles (Niles North, where I graduated, was the set for some scenes in the movie). More recently, shows like Chicago Fire have filmed and even shopped for costumes in Skokie, continuing its long history of being part of the film and television industry.
The reason behind celebrations is just as important as the rituals and traditions that come along with them. Knowing the 'why' behind what we do gives even more meaning to how carry on our particular traditions. The meaning also increases the likelihood that these traditions will continue with the next generation.
I'm hoping that at a future Backlot Bash, someone will take note of a random Charlie Chaplin cutout and tell the story of Skokie that they heard from that one pink-haired vendor selling postcards. That way, the spirit of Skokie's summertime tradition continues on and is never forgotten.
Upcoming Holidays & Important Events
September 15 - October 15 celebrates contributions of Americans with Hispanic and Latino roots
The Jewish new year, often symbolizing the casting off of bad things and taking in good and sweet things.
One of the holiest days in the Jewish calendar. It is celebrated by fasting, prayer, and confession of sins.
Also known as Hangawi, it is a harvest festival celebrating family and loved ones. Many people travel to their hometowns to pay their respects to the spirits of their ancestors.
The Mid-Autumn Festival is a harvest celebration where families reunite and appreciate the full moon. A famous legend regarding the Chinese moon goddess Chang’e’s legend is celebrated with offerings to her and her jade rabbit.
A week-long celebration that commemorates the journey the Jewish people took on their way to the Promised Land. Families eat and camp out in a Sukkah, a decorated tent, as well as recall ancestors.
A day to celebrate all educators and their impact in the lives of their students.
Tuesday, Oct. 3rd, 3pm
3900 Glenview Road
GGCP Meeting w/ Spanish BPAC
Thursday, Oct. 12th, 7pm
This is an online event.
Mark your calendars for...
Community Blurb #2: Grandparents' Day
Grandparents Day was on September 10. Some Gators shared what they love most about their grandparents(s). Click here to watch the video!
Family Cooking Night: Mooncakes for Mid-Autumn Festival
Watch the video and learn the story of Jasmine's family and their celebration of the Mid-Autumn Festival.
Mrs. Funke, the Glen Grove LRC Director, compiled a collection of books related to the various celebrations featured in the Community Project
Have questions? Send us an email!
- Katherine Ellison, Glen Grove Principal
- Aurora Joaquin, Glen Grove Speech-Language Pathologist
- Katelyn Kelleher, Glen Grove Psychologist
- Hedy Helfand, Glen Grove English Langauge Learning Teacher
- Pam Leister, Glen Grove English Langauge Learning Teacher
- Lisa Funke, Glen Grove Learning Resource Center Director
- Marie Chang-Pisano, Glen Grove Reading Intervention Associate
- Sylvia Gorski Duarte, District Title III Family Resource Teacher
- Lindsey Lurie, District Multilingual Instructional Coach
The Glen Grove Community Project acknowledges that the land on which their community, Glenview District 34, lives and works today is in the original homelands of the Peoria, Bodwéwadmi (Potawatomi), Myaamia, Očhéthi Šakówiŋ, Hoocąk (Ho-Chunk), and Kiikaapoi (Kickapoo) People and pay respects to the elders and communities of past and present.
In conjunction with this land acknowledgment, we want to provide resources to learn more about the original peoples and communities of the land.
- A Story of Survival: The Wampanoag and the English (A Native American Perspective of Thanksgiving)
- The Wampanoag Way (video)
- Native Americans (BrainPop video)
- Native America: A Documentary Exploring the World of America's First Peoples (PBS trailer)
- Glenview Public Library resources
- Visit The Grove to learn more about Native American groups that originally inhabited the area.