Will “O Rahm, O Rahm Emanuel” be the hit of the holiday season?

November 28, 2010

The performance of “O Rahm, O Rahm Emanuel” by the Frozen Robins is now posted on You Tube: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kwWemF4oZ1c. More below.

Sustainability on our college campuses…Part Deux

Back on September 5, I talked about the new Sustainability Studies program at Roosevelt University’s College of Professional Studies. As I discussed with two of the co-founders of that program, Michael A. Bryson, PhD, Associate Professor of Humanities, and Carl A. Zimring, Assistant Professor of Social Science, that program was the first of its kind in the Chicago region and one of the few bachelor’s degree in sustainability programs in the country.

But Roosevelt isn’t the only college in the area that is pursuing a sustainability curriculum as you’ll discover if you click on Joliet Junior College’s Sustainable Campus page. Maria Anna Rafac, professor and academic advisor for the Architecture, Engineering, and Construction Management programs, is also co-chair of the JJC Sustainability Initiatives Committee. She points out that JJC has an impressive list of accomplishments in the realm of sustainability. In addition, Rafac is currently helping to lead JJC’s effort of developing a local foods project, with the help of the JJC Local Food Grant from the Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity (DCEO).

Among the other achievements, JJC has started work on

  • the production of an outdoor vegetable garden
  • a hydroponic food production process in our new LEED-certified greenhouse
  • establishing a local foods enterprise or farmers market (open to community participation) on the college campus

Rafac is joined on my show today by a long-time (I was going to say “old” but realized that I’d get into trouble) friend of mine, Jeanne Phelan, who serves on the Joliet Junior College Local Foods Advisory Council and has been helping to lead the local foods movement in Joliet.

This Friday, December 3, the college is hosting an event called GROW Food Community Economy. It will include a sustainable, local foods breakfast and three nationally known speakers: John Ikerd, agricultural economist and author, Terra Brockman, founder of The Land Connection and author of Seasons on Henry’s Farm, and Jim Slama, founder and president of Family Farmed.

Ladies and genomes, give it up for…The Frozen Robins!

Are you familiar with those terrific “mayhem” commericals that are currently running on television? Those are the kinds of things that happen to me when the various parts of my life collide. In this case, it’s Entertainment v. Horticulture on The Mike Nowak Show…and I think that Horticulture is going to take a beating.

I didn’t start out as a gardening communicator (and PLEASE don’t call me a guru…I don’t belong to the Guru’s Union). When folks ask me what my background in horticulture is, I respond, “Show biz.” Part of that checkered show biz past involves caroling during the holiday season. The Frozen Robins were hatched about fifteen years ago and several of the flock are in studio today: Jacquie Krupka, Nancy Howland Walker, Dan Gately, Randy Craig and yours truly.

Rumor has it that we will be unleashing a new song about Rahm Emanuel during the broadcast. This could get ugly.

Good Growing: Mr. Brown Thumb

He’s back, with a potpourri of events and news items:

Chicago Conservation Bridgeport Weatherization Workshop
Sat, December 4, 11am-2pm
Daley Chicago Public Library 3400 S Halsted
Hands-on demonstration of the weatherization kits to help you lower your energy bills. Complimentary weatherization kits will be provided to attendees. Reserve your spot in the workshop and RSVP to weatherizationbridgeport@gmail.com

Emerald Ash Borer
Emerald ash borer beetles were found in two ash trees in Barrington, Illinois.
EAB has also been discovered at The Morton Arboretum

Create Your Own Grapevine Wreath
Forest Preserve District of Cook County
Sat, December 4 1:30pm-4:30pm
10.00 fee per person. Ages 13 and up. Register by December 2nd.
Sand Ridge Nature Center: 708-868-0606
15891 Paxton Avenue
South Holland, IL

The Home Landscape Design Workshop Series-2011
Saturday, January 15-Saturday, February 26, 2011
Wicker Park Field House 1425 N. Damen
7 Week series from 10am-1pm Where you will create a new landscape design. You’ll go home with drawings you design for either a container garden on in-ground garden at your home, business or community garden. Reservations are required and the class is limited to 55 students. wpgarden@aol.com or call 773-278-9075

Houseplants for the Holidays
My recommendation for the three most popular plants to give and buy over the holidays. Some tips on where to buy them and who to give them to.

Snow Thrower Giveaway
One of my friends is hosting a snow thrower give away on her blog. Simply visit her blog and share your snow day memory in a comment and be entered to win a snow thrower. Winner will be chosen Contest ends at midnight, CST December 3, 2010.

MrBrownThumb is the screen name of an urban gardener in Chicago. He can be found at his eponymous blog MrBrownThumb and Chicago Garden at ChicagoNow.

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