Thursday, April 22, 2010

brighton park and proud

I grew up in Brighton Park.  This area is on the southwest side of Chicago, between Western and Pulaski, 38th and 63rd, give or take a few blocks.  We moved from the Back of the Yards when I was 8 and settled into a little 2 flat near the famous intersection of Archer and Kedzie.  This picture is of Crane Company which was a huge industrial plant just across the street from our house.
Our childhood captures the memories that will remain with us throughout our lifetime.  Brighton Theatre was a favorite hangout - we saw Sonny and Cher perform live there.  A bunch of us would get a milkshake at Gertie's after the movie.  We cruised down Archer Avenue, browsing the stores and as a teen, hung out at Open Hearth, our big stomping ground.  We must have drank gallons of coffee there.  Breakfasts after a long night out were divine.
Huck Finn had the best donuts.  This intersection is the heart of Brighton Park.  We walked everywhere and when I secured a job, took the bus downtown from this corner.  We still have a home in the area that we are renovating.  It is a nice home in a perfect location for transportation purposes.  As kids, we just sat on the front porch listening to music and conversing.  Then we'd walk around and meet up with others.  Life was simple.  I encourage you to visit the site Brighton Park and proud, to get a flashback rush of all the iconic places.  I only posted a couple, but there are many others that are sure to trigger a ton of thoughts.
We are keeping our fingers crossed that this reverses someday.  The surrounding neighborhoods are improving tremendously, but it will be many years before this pocket of land reverses.  That's the circle of life.  This weekend we will plant flowers and utilize the healthy soil at the home in this area.  The soil is perfect for gardening.  Good old Brighton Park.  My roots.  I'm very proud.
This is the Bayou Record store, featuring our buddy, Joe Antczak.  We still keep in touch, as do many people from the past.  Needless to say, being a music lover, this was my pitstop repeatedly.

To fond memories...xo

thanks, Danny, for sending this to me xo