Village to pass Worth Days off to park district

  • Written by Bob Rakow

  The village of Worth wants to get out of the Worth Days business.
  Trustees on Tuesday night agreed that the Worth Park District is better suited to sponsor the annual festival.
  “I’ll contact (Park District Director) Carlo (Capalbo) and let him know that that’s the direction the village wants to go,” Mayor Mary Werner told trustees.
  Werner said she met with Capalbo about one month ago, and the park district is open to taking over Worth Days.
  The annual four-day festival has been held for nearly six decades, but trustees believe the work required to make the event a success requires too much on the part of village employees.
  “I think it’s time for the village to get out of the Worth Days business,” Trustee Mary Rhein said.
  Trustee Colleen McElroy agreed and said the park district is better equipped to hold the festival.
  “They’re in the business of recreation,” McElroy said.
  Currently, the park district has a role in the festival running the children’s attractions, McElroy said.
  The fest has a $70,000 budget and has broken even for the past three years, Werner said. The 2013 fest is expected to do the same, she said. The financials for this year’s fest have not yet been released.
  “I feel pretty confident the village broke even again,” she said.
  Turning the festival over to the park district does not mean the village won’t stay involved. Instead, village officials and employees will continue to volunteer at the event, McElroy said.
  The 2014 edition of the festival will be especially significant as it will be part of the village’s 100th anniversary celebration, Werner said.
  The village is planning a series of events throughout the year to celebrate its centennial, similar to neighboring Chicago Ridge, which is also celebrating its 100th anniversary in 2014.