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Our Favorite Moments of 2021
“When family and friends ask me how we’re doing, I reply ‘We have the Village.’”
Navigating Life after 50
December 22, 2021
Dear Friends,
Happy holidays! We are once again filled with the gratitude, joy, and warmth that comes with the season, despite the uncertainty of the pandemic.

We have learned over the past two years what really matters. Within the Village community, we have kept true to our mission of inspiring and encouraging connection, engagement, and purpose. Whether we connected virtually, by email, by phone or in person, we continued to strengthen our bonds and have much to celebrate as we look back at 2021.

Let us be grateful for the good times from the year that has passed and look forward with anticipation to the new one!

Warm regards,
Darcy L. Evon, CEO

P.s. – We are so grateful to each and every one of you for being a part of the Village community as a member, friend, partner, donor or collaborator. Thank you from the bottom of our hearts for this successful year! And look for our 2021 Annual Report in February!
“We just clicked!” Social Connection
Members on a tour of the Skokie Sculpture Garden, hosted by Life 3.0.
At the Village, we filled the year with a total of 455 opportunities to connect via events on Zoom or in person. People became acquainted, learned new things, and found many ways to prevent isolation and fight off loneliness.
Village members enjoyed a Holiday Luncheon hosted by the Men's Group at the Chicago Yacht Club.
David Baker led a birding adventure at the Japenese Gardens, hosted by the Life 3.0 Committee.
A SAGE Virtual Dinner, hosted by the Village LGBTA Committee with special guests from LGBTQ+ Intergenerational Dialogue Project.
Village members volunteered at the Greater Chicago Food Depository.
A docent-led tour of the Lincoln Park Conservatory this month.
Brain Health/Memory Loss Program
We continue to expand this comprehensive program that provides individualized support, resource referrals and education to those with cognitive loss, their care partners, and families.

One of over 70 BH / ML programs this year was “Connecting Through Communication” with Northwestern University's Dr. Angela Roberts which taught that a diagnosis of dementia doesn’t have to mean a diminished connection with those you love. This was an Aging Brain & Body Event, presented by The Chicagoland Villages Collaborative; if you missed the live event in April, click here to view the presentation.
Our care partner stroll through the Zoo this past November.
Annual Benefit: The New Roaring 20's!
Against the backdrop of a speakeasy and dressed to the flapper nines, Darcy Evon, Karen Terry, Molly Matthias and Gentleman Bruce Hunt presided over our most successful benefit to date! They introduced poignant videos in which Oscar Zambrano, Molly Matthias, Vamse Kumar Subbiah, Estelle Spector, Carol Rosofsky and Jim Bensdorf spoke about how important the Village is to them. Fund-A-Need donations from the event will support vital programs in 2022. Thanks to all who participated!
A toast at the end of our spectacular Annual Benefit via Zoom!
Members showed off their style at the virtual auction kick-off party.
Health and Wellness–for the Whole You
The Village provides our community with the support, knowledge, and resources to confidently manage our health care and overall wellness. We made sure to address all aspects of wellness: mental, physical, emotional and financial health including this sampling of our 2021 programs:

  • Small Steps to Big Health Changes: Explored the role nutrition plays in brain health and how small steps can lead to big changes with dietitian Alisa Bloom
  • Covid 19 Vaccine Q&A with Dr. Richard J. Miller, Professor of Pharmacology at Northwestern University’s Feinberg School of Medicine
  • A Legal Road Map to Aging Well with Certified Elder Law Attorney Katie Casey of Dutton Casey & Mesoloras
  • One-on-one Medicare counseling sessions with Kate Paz
  • Weekly exercise-at-home program with Jill Stein
  • Walks and walking tours
Village members and guests enjoyed weekly walks around North Pond this fall -- and hope to return soon, weather permitting!
Taking on the Big Issues
Shattering Stereotypes About Aging: The Trailblazer Award
Each year, The Village Chicago presents The Trailblazer Award to an individual, an organization, and an author who are changing the narrative about aging and demonstrating that the decades of life after 50 are vital, engaging, productive and fulfilling.
This year’s recipients were Tom Kuczmarski, Co-Founder of Chicago Innovation; Town Hall apartments, the first affordable LGBTQ-friendly senior housing in Chicago; and author Ashton Applewhite, whose book, This Chair Rocks – A Manifesto Against Ageism has catalyzed a global movement to recognize and eliminate age bias.
Tom Kuczmarski
Town Hall Apartments
Ashton Applewhite
Confronting the Care Crisis
We devoted the October issue of The Navigator to the growing issue of access to qualified and affordable long-term care for people of all ages. We are moving the family caregiving crisis front and center so that we can begin to work on solutions as an inclusive, thoughtful community. We at The Village Chicago are committed to promoting practices that help families grappling with caregiving issues, and to providing help where we can.
Addressing Age Bias
Darcy Evon welcomes the sixth cohort of Ageless Innovators at the launch party this summer.
We completed another successful year of the Ageless Innovators program – now welcoming its seventh cohort. As we bridge the generations through reciprocal mentoring, sharing experiences, skills, and knowledge, we are also developing a new generation of age-savvy business and nonprofit leaders.
Provocative Thought Leader Events
Our thought leader events introduced hundreds of new people to the Village and our important mission. At our most recent Thought Leader event, we presented a panel discussion on affordable housing for older adults in collaboration with our partners Center on Halsted, Heartland Alliance, H.O.M.E, and the Jane Addams Senior Caucus. To view a recording of this event, click here.
Our most recent Thought Leaders event can be viewed online!
New Ways to Potluck!
Virtual Spring Potluck
Although we were unable to gather in person for the annual Spring Potluck, we did gather virtually to hear Dr. Cheryl Woodson provide some wise guidance on emerging from lockdown. A delicious catered meal was available for those who wanted the full potluck experience!
Dr. Cheryl Woodson, our featured guest at the spring potluck.
Village Fall Fest
In October, our community partner and annual sponsor, Belmont Village Senior Living of Lincoln Park, hosted the Village community for Fall Fest at their outdoor patio: good food, good conversation and friendly faces.
Thanks to host Belmont Village, Fall Fest was safely enjoyed outdoors.
Village Bulletin
A New Year-end Matching Gift!
Village member David Hiller just pledged an additional $2,500 year-end matching gift, bringing our total match to $17,500. Help us reach our goal by making a gift here. All funds will support key programs in 2022.
New Year, New Ongoing Series
In January, the Village will be offering three new virtual series, each providing members and guests unique opportunities to meet, connect, and learn together. See details and links below!

Essentials of Creative Writing
(4-week series) 1/14–2/4, 1 PM via Zoom
Members–$50 & guests–$65
Brush up on your creative writing skills with author Vincent Francone! Click here to learn more.

Expression Through Art
(4-part biweekly series) 1/20–3/3, 2 PM via Zoom
Members & guests–$15
Relax, escape the day-to-day, and get lost in the creative process with Lisa Swaiman. Click here to learn more.

Brain Connection Café with Jen
(4-part biweekly series) 1/24–3/7 11 AM via Zoom
Members & gusts–free
Drop in to connect with others, practice skills and exercise your brain with Jen Hurd. Click here to learn more.
Still Have Some Last Minute Shopping?
Are you still looking for that perfect gift for your loved one? Click here to view our 2021 Village Holiday Gift Guide! Many options are available to ship straight to their door.
Village Event Calendar
RSVP today for our upcoming in-person and virtual events! For full descriptions and registration, visit

  • (12/23) Short Story Intergenerational Discussions
  • (12/28) Visit to the Museum of Contemporary Art Presented by the Near North Circle | An In-Person Event
  • (12/28) Ask the Expert: Fighting Fraudsters
  • (12/30) Coffee Chat BYOC
  • (1/1) Saturday Afternoon at the Movies | Don't Look Up (2021)
  • (1/3) Bridging the Racial Divide
  • (1/4) Exercise at Home with Jill Stein
  • (1/5) Virtual New Member Meet & Greet
  • (1/5) Great Books, Great Conversations
  • (1/12) Save the Date! Village Men's Group Presentation
  • (1/12) Dame Myra Hess Memorial Concert Presented by the Near North Circle | An In-Person Event
  • (1/14) Essentials of Creative Writing (4-week series)
  • (1/15) Virtual Banjo Night!
  • (1/16) Tiny Theatre Presents: The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind (2019)
  • (1/19) Death Café: An Informal Conversation About Death & Dying
  • (1/20) NEW! Self-guided Tour of Lincoln Park Conservatory | An In-Person Event
  • (1/20) How to Reduce Back Pain with Jill Stein
  • (1/20) Expression Through Art (4-part biweekly series)
  • (1/24) NEW! Brain Connection Café with Jen (4-part biweekly series)
  • (1/25) Healthy Cooking at Home A Virtual Demo with Jen Hurd
  • (2/2) NEW! Prospective Member Coffee & Pastries | An In-Person Event

To RSVP for any event, please visit our web calendar or email us at!
Village Member Pastime Groups
Join the Village!
Are you...

Looking for a new career, about to retire, wondering what's next? Seeking companions that share your interests? Searching for a way to utilize your abilities? In need of occasional help? New to Chicago? Worried about changing needs? An adult child with aging parents?

Village members are part of an inclusive, multigenerational community, connected to others and to the resources that support growth and well-being as we navigate life after 50 together.

Learn more about the Village by calling us at 773.248.8700 or click here to download the membership application form.

Village Sponsors
Leadership of The Village Chicago
Board of Directors
Karen Terry,
Judith Gethner
Vice President
David Baker,
Vice President
Angie Levenstein,
Richard W. Sullivan,
Kathie Kolodgy,
Immediate Past President
Donald M. Bell
Patricia Clickener
Charles G. Cooper
Caryn Curry
Thomas C. Eley III
Joan Goldstein
Bruce Hunt
Ira Kohlman
Molly Matthias
Therese Meike
Liz Metzger
Gail C. Moss
Linda Randall
Wally Shah
Carol Stein
Lois Stuckey
Vamse Kumar Subbiah
Janet Walters
Melville Washburn
Joyce Winnecke
Advisory Council
Neelum T. Aggarwal, MD
Robyn L. Golden, LCSW
Joanne G. Schwartzberg, MD
Mary Ann Smith
Darcy L. Evon
The Village Chicago is a social network of friendship, engagement and services for people over 50. We support all aspects of well-being through social engagement, an extensive services and referral network, lifelong learning, health and fitness, intergenerational relationships, work and purpose.

2502 North Clark Street, Chicago, Illinois 60614. 773.248.8700