It's beginning to look a lot like the holidays

Any walk through town would tell you that the holidays are just around the corner - and so is perhaps the biggest event of the winter season: The Community House Holiday Ball.

This year's sold-out event on Dec. 2 is sure to dazzle lucky ticket-holders with eye-popping decor, all in a theme of the Roaring '20s. Best of all, proceeds from the event go directly to supporting one of the area's most vital organizations: The Community House.

When I moved to Hinsdale, I primarily knew The Community House for fun classes and camps for my children, for meeting spaces for organizations I was in, for tutoring, for preschool and for performances of youth theater. I flipped through the (extensive) catalog every time it arrived in my mailbox, and registered my third-born for Slime Camp with her friends.

It wasn't until I attended the Holiday Ball last year that I learned about the significant work being done by The Community House to help combat mental illness in our area and support at-risk youth in our own backyard. The breadth of counseling services offered to our struggling families is staggering, and, unfortunately, desperately needed.

This proceeds from this year's ball will be directed toward the satellite office, which services the Willowbrook Corner community. Hinsdale resident and ball co-chair, Mary Oslanoo, recently volunteered onsite with her fellow co-chairs.

"We walked out of the Anne M. Jeans School with a new fire to help," she said.

As we head toward the longest night of the year next month, it's good to know that The Community House provides a light for those who need it most. Even if you're not able to attend, make sure you put this event (or other ways to support) on your radar, and check out for other ways to contribute.

Finding Grace

While The Community House is working toward change now, the Hinsdale Historical Society is shining a light on those who have paved the way before us. From 6 to 9 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 16, the society is hosting an opening night party for the new "Finding Grace" exhibit at the Frank Lloyd Wright Bagley House in Hinsdale, at 121 S. County Line Road.

This free event, which includes light bites, refreshments, and libations, will kick off the exhibit that runs from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays from Nov. 18 through Dec. 17, and highlights the contributions of pioneering social reformer and Hinsdale resident, Grace Bagley. Register at to reserve your spot and learn more about this remarkable woman.

Making Spirits Bright

I often say that our town looks like something out of a Hallmark movie, and apparently, I'm not the only one! This year, Together at Peace, an organization that works to bring healing to grieving families, is teaming up with Wellness House and Lifetherapy to present "Making Spirits Bright," an outdoor shopping event from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 11, at Hinsdale Covenant Church, 412 S. Garfield Ave.

The event features Hallmark-film-favorite actress Jessy Schram, and combines shopping with live music and seasonal treats.

Tickets are $10 at the door or $7 in advance at

HJWC 5K Jingle Dash

If you feel like the holidays are already off to the races, you're a perfect addition to the Hinsdale Junior Woman's Club 5K Jingle Dash! This year, runners start "dashing through the snow" (hopefully not yet!) at 8 a.m. Sunday, Dec. 10, at Robbins Park in Hinsdale. They will merrily stroll (or "run, run, Rudolph") through town and return to hot cocoa and pictures with Santa and Mrs. Claus.

Participation is $40 for adults and $20 for children (strollers are free) and all proceeds benefit HJWC grants, which fund local nonprofits in our area (More to come on that in the new year)!

Sign up at and get ready to "jingle all the way!"

- Allison Peters of Hinsdale is

the paper's society columnist.

Readers can email her at

[email protected].