News and stuff about Lake Forest and Lake Bluff

Beef4Hunger Aims to Raise 50,000 Meals for Neighbors in Need

Sponsored Post by Beef4Hunger: Did you know that more than 17 million children wake up, go to school and go to bed hungry? That’s about one in four children who are considered food insecure. Hunger, as a greater societal problem, is something every community is aware of, yet there’s no denying it can easily fall into the “out of sight, out of mind” category. In our community, the exciting news is that we’ve found a way to be part of the solution.

Lake Forest-based Beef4Hunger is the only non-profit organization that exclusively procures and donates fresh beef meals to local food banks. Fresh beef is the hardest item for food banks to get and typically the first item to be cut due to costs. For hardworking families that simply can’t make ends meet, a meal containing high-quality protein is a significant change, as food bank rely heavily on starch-filled pantry items.

Since its founding in 2011, Beef4Hunger has already made a big impact by providing more than 56,104 protein-rich meals to families that wouldn’t otherwise be able to afford them. The organization’s long term strategy is to distribute fresh beef to all 200 food banks in the country. Every month Beef4Hunger procures, deliver and donates over 4,200 fresh beef meals to the Chicago Food Depository and Northern Illinois Food Bank.

On September 6, Beef4Hunger is hosting a “Double Feature” fundraiser at the Lake Bluff Golf Club with a goal to serve another 50,000 high-quality meals to local food banks. Starting at noon with a golf outing, participants can enjoy driving range warm up, 18 holes of golf with a cart, lunch and on-course contests for $125 a person. The Big Bad Q after-party starts at 6 p.m. and will feature live music from the Hell Hound Band, a full BBQ dinner, premium Terlato wines, custom craft beers from Lake Bluff Brewery and mechanical bull rides for $50 a person.

To purchase tickets, please visit   Beef4Hunger is a 100 percent volunteer-based organization that relies on the generosity and influence of generous individuals and socially responsible companies. For more information and to donate to Beef4Hunger, please visit and its Youtube Channel

Visit Beef4Hunger on Facebook at and on our Twitter page at


– Written for Beef4Hunger by volunteer Megan Paszczykowski



What’s Beyond Your Kitchen Table?

Post sponsored by Beef4Hunger and written by Megan Paszczykowski: On a typical day, my kitchen table reflects a familial battle of wills. I present a fresh, balanced meal to a dissatisfied pair of toddlers and immediately receive a request for mac n’ cheese from the pantry. Tired and defeated, I explain how fortunate they are to have access to fresh food – before it occurs to me that if they can’t even dress themselves, it’s unlikely they’ll comprehend greater societal problems. I decided that while I wasn’t inspiring change at my own table, it was time to walk the talk and do something about it outside of my home.

Shortly after moving to Lake Bluff, I met Greg and Dawn Barnum of Lake Forest in a coffee shop to discuss volunteering for their unique non-profit organization, Beef4Hunger. Theirs is the only organization that exclusively procures donates fresh beef directly to local food banks. For families who cannot afford it, access to fresh protein is certainly exceptional. For healthy development in children, it’s essential.

As a freelance writer, I work around my family’s schedule – often when they are asleep. While I understood the importance and impact of volunteering for a cause, I thought there was little time left in my day to make a difference. After meeting Greg and Dawn and learning about the inspiring work they do, I quickly realized I was wrong. Greg, who juggles managing Beef4Hunger during evenings and weekends, had just started a new job that required 80 percent travel.

“It’s very simple,” he told me. “There’s a problem in our society. Our neighbors need our help to feed fresh, safe, healthy meat to their families and we found a solution. You can be part of it.”

Since its founding in 2011, Beef4Hunger has already made a big impact by providing more than 51,880 protein-rich meals to families that wouldn’t otherwise be able to afford them. Beef4Hunger’s long term strategy is to distribute fresh beef to all 200 food banks in the country.

These days, I sit at a new table with my Beef4Hunger family, discussing ways to spread awareness about the need for fresh beef in food banks. As every one of us are volunteers, it seems we’ve all found our own nourishment in being part of the solution.

Beef4Hunger is hosting its 3rd annual fundraiser on September 6, 2014 at the Lake Bluff Golf Course to raise funds to serve another 50,000 high-quality meals to local food banks. The event is a “double feature” starting with at noon with a golf outing $125 at the Lake Bluff Golf Club and a Giant Big Bad Q BBQ featuring the Hell Hound Band starting at 6 p.m. for $50 a person.

To purchase tickets, please visit For more information and to donate to Beef4Hunger, please visit and its Youtube Channel

Three Ways to Achieve Optimal Recovery

Sponsored Post by Fitness Together Lake Forest: Your workout performance is only as good as your ability to recovery from previous sessions. If your training is too large of a stressor and your body is unable to recover from it, then overtime you can get into an overtrained state and inhibit your ability to make gains, or even worse, get injured. Apart from smart training and programming, there are certain steps you can take to enhance the body’s ability to recover from training sessions. Try these top 3 tips and reap the benefits of increased performance.

1. Post workout nutrition. When your training is very demanding, you burn a lot of glycogen, or stored carbohydrate. The body can only store 500 grams of glycogen. About 100 grams are used to fuel the brain and other organs for daily activity. The other 400 grams can be used to fuel high intensity workouts. This means that after hard training, we need to replenish glycogen stores. This is best done through healthy carbohydrate sources. Some great ways to do this are smoothies containing fruit, fresh fruit, rice or potatoes. These are healthy, carb rich foods that can restore glycogen quickly and prepare you for the next workout.

2. Soft-tissue integrity. Demanding training puts a tremendous load on the tissues of the body. Muscles, ligaments, tendon, and fascia are all taxed to their limits and often undergo microtrauma. This is a beneficial aspect of training as this is how the tissue can adapt to new demands and grow stronger and more resilient. It is in the recovery window that we actually grow stronger, not during the workout. We can improve the recovery capabilities of the tissues by using targeted stretching, foam rolling, massage, or lacrosse balls. Rigorous strength training can often times also leave people with increased tone in the utilized musculature. Using modalities like massage or stretching can help to deal with this.

3. Sleep. The most crucial and under-utilized aspect of recovery is sleep. There are so many athletes and fitness enthusiasts who train hard, eat well, but don’t get nearly enough sleep. Even an hour or two of missed sleep has a cumulatively negative effect on your training. The slow-wave stage of sleep is where testosterone and growth hormone are released which have a hugely beneficial effect on your strength abilities. If you are learning new techniques and skills in your training, sleep is where you store these movements in the brain so you can call on them at a later date and improve technical efficiency over time. Finally, missing sleep can hugely deter training motivation. Tired people are far less likely to motivate themselves to train on a regular basis.

These are our Top 3 tips to improve your ability to bounce back from hard training sessions while still making progress and avoiding overtraining injuries. Remember, you can only train as hard as is your ability to recover. So don’t train hard and eat unhealthy foods while missing out on crucial sleep and stretching practices. Do everything possible to be the best you can be.

If you’d like more info on how this and other methods of training can be used for you specifically to help you reach your goals, contact us at Fitness Together Lake Forest at 847-283-6060 or or visit us at to schedule a complimentary consultation.

Written by Vlad Klipinitser for Fitness Together Lake Forest.

Balmoral Memory Care Center Engages Residents Through Equine Therapy

Sponsored Post: To be fully accepted just as you are is really all that anybody wants. Residents with dementia from the Balmoral Care Center at Lake Forest Place retirement community experience that unconditionally from equine therapy horses. Lake Forest Place Director of Health Care Activities Mary Eichenfeld regularly takes a small group of residents to Equestrian Connection for non-mounted equine therapy.

Therapy at Equestrian Connection

Equine therapy at Equestrian Connection

“After interacting with the horses, a resident who had been fairly non-verbal began to talk,” says Eichenfeld. “I saw more movement, engagement, curiosity and attunement. The residents had a new light in their eyes, and I saw a healing connection being formed. Based on their positive response and interest, we now visit the Equestrian Connection twice a month.”

According to the Diana Schnell, executive director at the Equestrian Connection, equine therapy engages many different senses. It triggers reactions, memories and feelings not often tapped into in everyday life. Being outdoors with a horse in a protected setting introduces newness and novelty. Riding improves balance and core strength. The horse’s movement can also be experienced in other ways through adaptive equipment.

“Horses are very non-judgmental and people feel that both consciously and unconsciously,” said Schnell. “People connect with the horse and know that they are safe. A person who may have lost a sense of control in their lives regains a bit of power after learning to lead a 1200 pound horse. It builds their confidence.”

Equestrian Connection developed additional programs to address other unmet needs of people with disabilities. It offers an art therapy program, which it brings to Lake Forest Place for residents in memory care. Its clients range from age two to 105 and may have special needs that are physical, mental, the result of brain injuries, emotional and other psychological adjustment.

Schnell recognized the population was beginning to age and knew this was a demographic that could benefit from motor skills strengthening and from the psychological connection one gets from a horse. The center now offers a new equine therapy program called “Balance for Life,” funded by a grant from Baxter International Foundation.

Ms. Eichenfeld concludes, “It’s very exciting to see an activity with such an immediate positive impact. Each resident responds to the horses differently, and each horse is different. Our person-centered approach at to care at Balmoral is based on the same premise—we treat each person as an individual.”


Lake Forest Place, a member of Presbyterian Homes, is a continuing care retirement community located adjacent to Northwestern Lake Forest Hospital at 1110 Pembridge Drive, Lake Forest, IL. Lake Forest Place serves more than 400 residents on a 49-acre campus and offers independent living apartments and cottages, assisted living, rehabilitative services, skilled nursing and memory care. For more information call 847-604-6700 or visit


Equestrian Connection is a non-profit organization located in Lake Forest, IL, that provides a variety of therapeutic services for children and adults with special needs on an individual basis or as part of a group. Founded in 2001 to provide hippotherapy (using a horse’s movements as a therapy tool) and therapeutic riding, the organization now offers 18 different programs from art therapy to riding lessons and summer camps. For more information call 847-615-8696 or visit

Photographer Captures Century Of Life And Architecture In And Near Lake Forest

Sponsored Post by Re-invent Art Gallery & Studio of Lake Forest:


Accomplished art photographer Caitlin Saville Collins is a member of one of the oldest families in Lake Forest, and she honors that history with a fascinating new photo exhibit of Lake Forest events, landmarks and architecture covering a century of local beauty and life – past to present. For anyone, her photos stand alone as beautiful art. And for generations of locals, they will have additional meaning.

One show favorite is bound to be Caitlin’s early-career black-and-white photo of Howard van Doren Shaw’s wood-carved “Extra Angel”. The Angel blessed the exterior of Shaw’s Meadow Studio at Ragdale for generations, but the elements took their toll and it has been removed from viewing. But Caitlin’s photo shows the angel in younger days, and it comes with a story, too.


csaville_extra angel

“Howard van Doren Shaw designed the angels for atop the pillars of the nave at Fourth Presbyterian Church in Chicago. He had expert Italian woodcarvers execute his design, ordering 14 angels for the church – but they mistakenly made him 15! ” noted Caitlin. ”That’s how the now-famous Extra Angel came to Shaw’s Ragdale home.”

Caitlin has several other photos in the exhibit of Shaw works, and a special connection, too. The great architect was a close friend and colleague of Clayton Mark, her great-great-grandfather, also building him his home at 999 Lake Road. With these and other historical tie-ins, the exhibit will also feature photos from the Mark-Saville archives, chronicling bygone days around town.

Present-day Lake Forest will also be front and center in the exhibit. Her newest photos depict many current and familiar Lake Forest landmarks, nature scenes, architectural elements and statues – all taken with taken Caitlin’s keen eye and artistic flair as interesting and engaging stand-alone pieces for anyone, anywhere.

Lake Forest Days

Lake Forest Days

“I’ve always felt that Lake Forest is one of the most beautiful places on earth. I am proud and privileged to give the world a window into the area’s hidden and not-so-hidden treasures through my photography,” said the artist.

She continued, “Photography has always flowed as a natural extension of my life. I grew up watching my grandfather taking pictures and capturing our lives, and after he died, I even used his cameras through high school…. The rest, as they say, is history!”

The Beauitiful LiFe Exhibit runs at Re-invent July 26 through September 6. A pre-opening celebration will be held Friday, July 25 from 6-9, with freewill admission.

Re-invent is located at 202 E. Wisconsin Ave, in Lake Forest and the 4000sf arts hub features the main gallery, an artisans shop, studio and workshop/event space. Visit or call 224-544-5961 for details.