Capital Improvement Projects
Renewed Waterfall Garden at Cheney Mansion
Woodland Waterfall Ribbon Cutting
Su, May 19, 12-1pm
Join us as we cut the ribbon for the beautifully restored Woodland Waterfall feature!
On June 29, long- time Oak Park resident Dr. Audrey Lumsden-Kouvel presented a generous $54,000 donation to the Parks Foundation of Oak Park to restore the historic woodland water feature located in the southeast corner of the two acre grounds of Cheney Mansion. This significant landscape element is approximately 100 years old, and has not been in working order for more than 30 years. Once completed, this restored element will enhance the already stunning grounds of Cheney Mansion. The Parks Foundation will work in cooperation with the Gardens of Cheney community volunteer group, the Park District of Oak Park and Ted Wolff Landscape Architects, to restore this beautiful landscape feature. The restoration project is scheduled to begin in the summer of 2012, and it is anticipated to be completed in the fall of 2012.
Mrs. Kouvel and her late husband, Jim, were residents of the Frank Lloyd Home directly across from Cheney Mansion for many years. Mr. and Mrs. Kouvel visited Cheney Mansion frequently, and enjoyed spending time at the Woodland Waterfall. The restoration donation was made in honor of her late husband, who passed away in 2008.
The Gardens of Cheney committee are focused on future enhancements at Cheney Mansion, the first being the restoration of the Woodland Water Feature. This group also hopes to work to restore the green house on the property, is exploring how a renovated greenhouse can be used as a community resource for gardening and act as a hands-on classroom for community partners. It can also provide additional growing space to complement the growing houses at the Oak Park Conservatory, another Park District historic property. The historic greenhouse, now wrapped in white plastic to protect its fragile foundation, is closed and not useable due to the deterioration.
Stepping up to help launch the greenhouse project, Donna Schuler of River Forest made a $5,000 pledge to the group earlier in the year to kick off a fundraising campaign called Save the Green House. The newly formed Parks Foundation of Oak Park is the project’s fiscal agent for the group, which began meeting a year ago to explore how Oak Park residents can help support Cheney Mansion’s gardens and the greenhouse.
For more information, contact Helen Vogel, Cheney Mansion Operations Supervisor, at (708)383-2612.
Cheney Mansion Waterfall Garden Plan (click for larger image)