Celebrating 19 Years as Barrington’s Signature Magazine

Arts and Culture

Presenting Cultural Events for May 2024
at Barrington’s White House

In memory of Earle M. Combs, III, Timothy J. Dunn and Norval B. Stephens, Jr.

Growing Your Own Culinary & Medicinal Herb Garden with Smart Farm

Afternoon Tea with Chicago Pioneer Juliette Kinzie

Thursday, May 2 and Wednesday, May 8, 1:00 p.m.

$75 Per Person

Performer Betsey Means of WomenLore will protray Juliette Kinzie, a well born and well bred New England girl who met the famous fur trader John H. Kinzie at her grandparents’ home in Boston. He asked her to be his wife and to share with him the great adventure of life in the wilderness, which brought them to the Chicago frontier. Gerri of High Tea with Gerri will give an introduction to the history and art of drinking tea. The menu includes Earl Grey breakfast tea, savories, finger sandwiches, scones, and petit fours.

Artist Barbara Benstein: “My Favorite Things”

Thursday, May 16, 6:00 – 8:00 p.m.

FREE EVENT (Cash bar and light appetizers)

Versatile artist Barb Benstein paints a wide variety of subject matter in pastel and oil, from sunsets, seascapes, and animals to her favorite, horses. After working as a graphic artist for 10 years, she began painting full-time in 1993. In 2008 she began teaching art children at the Mainstreet Art Center in Lake Zurich, and she also teaches workshops at her studio. She often creates commissioned works and, as a horse owner herself, she understands the emotional connection that people have with their pets; she loves being able to create a work that has so much meaning for its owner.

An Evening of Improv with Chicago’s Second City

Saturday, May 11, 7:30 p.m.

$65 Per Person

A wonderful opportunity to experience improvised comedy from the best performers in Chicago in the intimate setting of Barrington’s White House. You’ll laugh until your sides ache as you watch audience suggestions turn into hilarious scenes that will leave you wanting more! The iconic Second City Theater is responsible for launching the careers of stars like Chris Farley, Tina Fey, Stephen Colbert, Keegan-Michael Key, and more. Join the fun and experience the renowned Second City right in your own backyard.

Your Art Night Out

Each 3rd Thursday features a local artist exhibition with works for sale, complimentary appetizers, and a cash bar. It’s a great night out with friends!

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Thursday, May 16

Barbara Benstein – “My Favorite Things” (Details Above)


$15 Per Person Per Event

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Thursday, May 2

Growing Your Own Culinary & Medicinal Herb Garden with Smart Farm

– arts & culture featured artist –

“A Garden Moment”

Noah Desmond, Artist • Oil on Canvas, 49” x 61” (Framed)

Noah Desmond is one of the most sought-after artists in America today. Inspired by nature, Desmond has an impressionistic style that borders on the edge of abstraction. He creates landscapes and florals with bold colors and a sense of movement that draws you deep into the work. His energetic compositions are rendered with vibrant color, vitality, and spontaneity. Desmond’s textured canvases are created by layering pigments with both palette knife and brush, resulting in exciting landscapes, rich in depth and vibrancy.

After graduating with a BFA from the Milwaukee Institute of Art and Design (MIAD), Desmond attended the School of the Museum of Fine Arts (SMFA) at Tufts University. He is recognized for his painterly approach and the freshness of his work. Desmond lives and works in New Mexico. His national reputation has earned him a place in private collections throughout the United States and Canada. He is represented in the Chicagoland area by the Art Post Gallery in Northbrook. To learn more, visit artpostgallery.com or call 847-272-7659.

uncommon ground

S T O R Y  a n d  P H O T O G R A P H Y B Y  b y  M A R Y  K L E S T

Left: A patron selects a book at the Barrington Area Library. Right: The Quality Time sculpture by Sheila Oettinger is located at the Barrington Area Library.

Relax With a Good Book This Summer

Wherever I go these days, I see people with electronic devices scrolling TikTok, texting, and playing video games. Whether on a train, at a restaurant, or family gathering, the devices seem ever-present. But the other day I was at Heinen’s waiting to pay for some groceries and a girl about 9 years old was standing with her mother reading a book, flipping the pages, engulfed. My heart soared to see such a thing. I smiled at her and asked, “You like reading books?”

“I love reading them,” she responded. I looked at her mother and said, “You will never regret raising a reader.”

Readers are interesting people. Their world is bigger than themselves. With summer upon us, it’s time to relax with a good book. Recent studies confirm that reading paper-based printed text is a more effective way to absorb and retain information than reading on screens. The benefits of reading go beyond improved language skills and knowledge of the world. It helps to develop empathy, emotional awareness, and imagination. Reading printed books relaxes the nervous system rather than overstimulating it.

At home, it can start early with parents reading aloud to their children. When kids see you reading a book it’s modeling behavior that they may want to emulate. Reading is a path for parents to connect with their kids during all stages of life.

If you don’t know what to read, consider joining one of the many book clubs in our community. Ask a librarian or a friend who reads for suggestions. I recommend “The Samurai’s Garden” by Gail Tsukiyama. It’s a short, quiet book, with lovely characters who care about each other. Barrington Area Library staff member Karen McBride told me “The Great Gatsby” is always in the top 10 list of books checked out by residents.

If you or your kids haven’t read a book in a while, don’t worry. Charlie Donlea, best-selling author who will be speaking at Barrington’s White House on June 15, said he didn’t read a novel until he was 20 years old! There are different timelines for different people.

I don’t know if joyful readers are born that way or developed through their environment. What I do know is that reading a good book can change one’s life in a meaningful way. You sit with a book. No scrolling. I am not advocating a ban on electronic devices. They are of great benefit when used wisely. My reading room contains no electronics. My office is another matter. Everything in moderation. Enjoy summer!

Mary Klest is a Barrington-based writer and local journalism advocate. She can be reached at mary@maryklest.com.

Poetry Pause

Haiku Moments

By Harry Trumfio

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Harry Trumfio is a member of the Barrington Writers Workshop. This short form of poetry is called Haiku, which originated in Japan.

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Summer Love
Whispers in the trees
Flowers dancing in the breeze~
Perfect time for love

Summer Joy
Sun brightens the day
Joyfulness hums in my heart
Love is in the air

Evening Walk
Blue dragonfly skims
Winds whispering through willows
Mellow twilight moon

Summer Pleasure
backyard patio
coffee poured
warm taste of morning

See and hear area poets read their work at the Poetry in the Park event on June 20, 2024, at Barrington’s Citizens Park. Sponsored by the Village of Barrington and the Barrington Cultural Commission.

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