Stewards of the land and Olmsted’s Plan

In 1868, landscape architect Frederick Law Olmsted and his partner, Calvert Vaux, were commissioned to plan a unique community just west of Chicago, Illinois. The result was Riverside, a beautiful community along the Des Plaines River, complete with curving lanes, abundant greenery, and gas street lights. One hundred years later, the Frederick Law Olmsted Society of Riverside was formed.

 

In 1970, Riverside was named a National Historic Landscape District.

 

Latest News

Olmsted 200

Olmsted 200

Our Year-Long Initiatives! 2022 is the Bicentennial of the birth of Frederick Law Olmsted. Join us for a year of seed collecting and fundraising for two lasting commemorative gifts to the Riverside community.

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Newsletters

Newsletters

Summer Newsletter released!
Check out the 2021 SummerNewsletter today!

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Tributes & Trees Program

Tributes & Trees Program

The Olmsted Society is announcing “Tributes & Trees” a program where you can thank, memorialize, recognize or congratulate others – and enhance the landscape of our National Historic Landmark.

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Olmsted 200 Seed Collection Events

Olmsted 200 Seed Collection Events

Our August 15 Seed Hunt is perfect for adventurers, as we will be exploring the woods of Indian Gardens. Our guest nature guide is Val Kehoe, Energy and Environmental Stewardship Coordinator for the University of Illinois Extension serving Cook County.

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A Look into Urban Bird Migration & What Role We Play

A Look into Urban Bird Migration & What Role We Play

Join Henry Griffin on Thursday, August 26 at 7pm for an overview of birdlife found throughout the seasons in our area with a special focus on migration.

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A Bird Walk with Henry Griffin

A Bird Walk with Henry Griffin

On Sunday, August 29th join local birding expert Griffin on a guided, 90-minute birdwatching activity that is appropriate for new and experienced birders. This is a free event, but you must register in advance.

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FLOS Garden Groomers Program

FLOS Garden Groomers Program

Great Garden Opportunity for Teens aged 14-18 now available Spring 2021!

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Landscape Workdays

Landscape Workdays

Our Workdays are currently by reservation only. Next Workday will be Satruday, July 31st at Scottswood Common.

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Historic Walking Tours

Historic Walking Tours

Our 2021 Historic Walking Tours of beautiful Riverside are now available on a reserved basis, with masks required and COVID-19 guidelines enforced. Next tour is August 29th, South Tour.

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Reflections on Riverside

Reflections on Riverside

2021 Reflections on Riverside Poetry Contest happened this April! Details on this year’s contest: Riverside’s Beginnings, Results to follow soon!

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Home Rain Garden Discussion Panel

Home Rain Garden Discussion Panel

The Riverside Public Library and the Frederick Law Olmsted Society hosted a Panel Discussion on Home Rain Gardens, Thursday, April 29. Link to presentation and resources now available.

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Jazz Age Modern: Riverside’s Art Deco & Art Moderne Houses

Jazz Age Modern: Riverside’s Art Deco & Art Moderne Houses

The Frederick Law Olmsted Society of Riverside partnered with the Library to present a survey of Art Deco and Art Moderne buildings in Riverside. The link to the recorded Zoom presentation is now available!

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The Seeds of Riverside: Creating an Olmsted 200 Botanical Box

The Seeds of Riverside: Creating an Olmsted 200 Botanical Box

Join us on September 9th as botanical artist Shilin Hora and hardwood artisan Francisco Gonzales walk us through the makings of intricate, museum-quality, botanical boxes.

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Landscape Workday:  May 15, 2021

Landscape Workday: May 15, 2021

We hosted 19 adult volunteers and four young adults on Saturday, May 15th, to begin a new restoration project in Indian Gardens. Part of the restoration was to pull invasive garlic mustard that was in full bloom. We filled the Village’s truck with 33 bags. FLOS has been removing garlic mustard from Indian Gardens for […]

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Membership

Membership

Now is the time to renew your membership for 2021! If you are not yet a member you can join today online.

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ATTENTION!

ATTENTION!

Consistent with state and local guidelines to prevent the spread of COVID-19 the Olmsted Society is modifying all public activities until further notice. Please check the appropriate areas of our website or Facebook page for details and updates.

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Landscape Workday:  May 1, 2021

Landscape Workday: May 1, 2021

On a beautiful day, ten volunteers pulled garlic mustard and removed invasive buckthorn from the riverbank along Riverside Road. Photos included!

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FLOS Video on RBTV

FLOS Video on RBTV

Several board members were interviewed by Sara Vacek for an RBTV informational spot on FLOS. It turned out very well. Check it out.

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Annual Meeting January 15, 2021

Annual Meeting January 15, 2021

A recording of the Annual Meeting is now available for your review!

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Hop Stop 2019

Hop Stop 2019

Thanks to all who made Hopstop 2019 a success!

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House Walk 2019: Masterworks

House Walk 2019: Masterworks

Thanks to all who visited Housewalk Masterworks!

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Vintage Baseball Game Hits Riverside

Vintage Baseball Game Hits Riverside

Vintage baseball game played in Riverside, Sunday, July 21st at the Big Ball Park

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Landscape Workday: July 18, 2020

Landscape Workday: July 18, 2020

FLOS had our first workday since the Covid-19 pandemic started in March. Seven volunteers weeded beds at Scottswood Commons. We all wore masks, brought our own tools and practiced social distancing.

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Landscape Workday:  March 8, 2020

Landscape Workday: March 8, 2020

Blue skies greeted our volunteers on the first workday of the year on March 8, 2020. We mulched on the north side of Big Ball Park along Delaplaine Road.

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Lecture:  CITY IN A GARDEN, NEW ENGLAND ROOTS

Lecture: CITY IN A GARDEN, NEW ENGLAND ROOTS

Chicago Tribune architecture critic Blair Kamin and former Tribune writer Barbara Mahany explored the New England-Chicago connections and their meaning for today. Video link to presentation now available for YouTube.

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Lecture:  Olmsted’s Offspring: From Riverside to Seaside

Lecture: Olmsted’s Offspring: From Riverside to Seaside

Ms. Plater-Zyberk, an internationally-recognized architect, urban designer and planner, presented Olmsted’s Offspring: From Riverside to Seaside. Link to video now uploaded.

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August 10th – Wild Flower Walk and Talk

August 10th – Wild Flower Walk and Talk

Walk and Talk with “The Illinois Botanist” was presented on Saturday, August 10. Video link to the lecture with prominent naturalist, Chris Brenda, is now available.

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Lecture:  Secrets from Very Old Trees

Lecture: Secrets from Very Old Trees

On May 2nd, at the Riverside Public Library we presented a lecture titled: “Secrets from Very Old Trees” given by Arboretum specialist Dr. M. Ross Alexander.

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Lecture: Zoo News

Lecture: Zoo News

Get the latest scoop on our neighbor, the Brookfield Zoo. Jennifer Baader, the zoo’s Vice President of Government Affairs, will acquaint us with the history of the zoo, animal conservation efforts, and what’s been happening lately with the mammals, reptiles, and other species that live there.

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Lecture:  Bird Friendly Gardens and Landscapes

Lecture: Bird Friendly Gardens and Landscapes

“A Bird’s Eye View of Riverside,” was a lecture and discussion on how to attract birds to your garden and landscape. The event was videotaped by Riverside TV and is available now for viewing.

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Lecture: What’s New (& Old) in the Cook County Forest Preserves

Lecture: What’s New (& Old) in the Cook County Forest Preserves

In this talk, Elsa Anderson, a Stewardship Program Aide with the Cook County Forest Preserves, took us through the history of the Forest Preserves and some of the natural treasures found in the preserves today. Video link provided by Riverside TV is now available.

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Lecture: Restoring Wright Buildings to their Rightful Brilliance

Lecture: Restoring Wright Buildings to their Rightful Brilliance

Gunny Harboe, the renowned head of Harboe Architects, gave an inside view of the processes used in the restoration of two of Frank Lloyd Wright’s gems. Link to video is available inside.

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Lecture:  Undamming the Des Plaines

Lecture: Undamming the Des Plaines

Steve Pescitelli, Illinois Department of Natural Resources Stream Specialist,shared the latest river monitoring results in order to show the contrast between the “before” and “after” of dam removal. If you missed the lecture, a copy of the presentation is available for review.

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Lecture:  The Mafia in the Western Suburbs

Lecture: The Mafia in the Western Suburbs

On December 4th at 7pm John J. Binder, author The Chicago Outfit and Al Capone’s Beer Wars: A Complete History of Organized Crime in Chicago during Prohibition, will discuss the history of organized crime in Riverside and surrounding suburbs.

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Invasion of the Land Snatchers

Invasion of the Land Snatchers

Ben Cox, Friends of the Forest Preserves President, discusses invasive species at the Deer Grove East Forest Preserve in Palatine, IL

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