Potlucks – 2nd Friday of the Month

Most months we gather to welcome new and existing members of our community on the 2nd Friday of the month. The next OPALGA+ Potluck will be on Friday, March 8 from 7-10 pm at 7900 Madison St, River Forest, hosted by Good Earth Greenhouse.

We invite everyone to come out to meet new friends and enjoy the company of old friends. You do not need to be a paid OPALGA+ member to attend one of our potlucks but we do expect you to be fully vaccinated for COVID-19. Potlucks are BYOB drinks and a dish to share. All are welcome–members, guests, straight allies, etc.  The more the merrier!  See you on March 8th!

Save the date for our future Friday potlucks in 2024:

  • April 12 – 815 Wisconsin Ave., Oak Park hosted by Gail Zarbin and Sarah Gallant
  • May 10 – TEEN FRIENDLY EVENT at 332 Wisconsin Ave., Oak Park, hosted by Mary Anne Mohanraj and her family
  • June 14 – 122 Elgin, Forest Park hosted by Rick Wagner and John Sahli
  • July 12 – 1043 S Harvey Ave, Oak Park hosted by Jim Kelly and Bruce Broerman
  • August 9 – 1844 N Nagel Ave, Chicago hosted by Bob Personett and Alan Hommerding
  • September 14 – 220 Franklin Ave, River Forest hosted by Kendall Alexander, Dianet Giraldo and Robert Baker
  • October 12 (note on a SATURDAY) – 528 Wesley, Oak Park hosted by Kelly Soprych
  • November 8 – 720 Chicago Avenue, Oak Park at the Oak Park Art League hosted by Bryan Northup
  • December 13 – 2422 Gunderson Avenue, Berwyn hosted by Rick Torres and David Olson

A special thanks to 2024 hosts Fanie Greef who opened the historic Coonley house to over 50 of us in February.

In 2023, we thank Cheryl Knecht for hosting February at the School House Kitchen & Studio in River Forest; Richard Marritt and Steve Oldham who hosted in their Frank Lloyd Wright home in Riverside in March; Sarah Corbin (April); Mary Anne Mohanraj family (May); Rick Wagner and John Sahli who hosted in their house and backyard garden in June; Bob Stoner and Steve Haught who hosted over 50 of us in July; Bob Personett and Alan Hommerding who helped us collect household supply donations for Sarah’s Inn during the August potluck they hosted; Kendall Alexander, Dianet Giraldo and Robert Baker (September); Kelly Soprych who hosted our Halloween costume-contest potluck in October; Jim Kelly and Bruce Broerman (November); and Doug Cotsamire and Ron Roman (December).

And our 2022 hosts Mary Anne Mohanraj and Kevin Whyte (April);  Kelly Soprych (May and September); Ron Roman and Doug Cotsamire (June); and Rick Wagner and John Sahl (July); Bob Personett and Alan Hommerding (August); John Becvar and Jim Walsh (October); Paul Loux and Brad Craig (November); and Janice Marin and Bailey Abbe (December).

Interested in hosting in 2025?

  1. Expect anywhere from 25-50 guests.  A greeter will welcome guests to your home and give them a name tag. They will need a spot to sit at the entrance. It will be helpful if you have a small table. The greeter will tell the guests where to hang coats, place savory dishes, place desserts and place their beverages.
  2. If possible, we ask that you have separate tables for savory dishes and desserts. Please protect your tables with a tablecloth, hot pads, etc. Beverages are usually on kitchen counters so that sweating cold drinks don’t damage a wooden table.
  3. As hosts we ask that you provide:
    a. 50 sturdy disposable plates for main dishes. Please do not use foam plates.
    b. 50 smaller plates for desserts
    c. Plenty of sturdy forks and knives for main dishes and plenty of forks for desserts
    d. Napkins
    e. Disposable wine glasses (9 ounce size is good)
    f. Disposable soda/water glasses (12 – 16 ounce size)
    g. On your table, have various serving spoons, forks, etc. available.
    h. A bottle opener and corkscrew
    i. A cooler filled with ice for guest’s drinks in warm weather months and an ice bucket if available
    j. Plastic wrap or aluminum foil for any leftovers
  4. Place a garbage bag in an obvious spot. Be prepared to empty it several times through the night. If your household recycles, consider placing a sign on the receptacle of what can be recycled.
  5. If you are hosting a warm weather potluck and guests can be outside, let us know if we should advise guests to bring lawn chairs.
  6. As the host, you do not need to make a dish to share. Your contribution is your home. What you can do instead is provide some bottled water, ice, and some regular and diet soda for guests. Coffee could also be an option. We recommend that hosts not provide any alcoholic beverages for guests—for liability reasons. Guests will bring their own.
  7. Please let the greeter know if there are any rooms off limits or if guests are invited in the basement, on porches, or upstairs. Let the greeter know where restrooms are located and where you would like coats hung or placed (a closet, coat rack or even a bed are fine).
  8. If there are any concerns, or if you need help throughout the evening, please let the greeter or any Board member know.
  9. Encourage guests to take home their dishes, serving platters, or any uneaten food—otherwise you will end up with a refrigerator full.