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Community Celebration Board

Welcome to the Ridgeville Park District Community Celebration Board! This is a space for us to post information on events here at the park, the City of Evanston and Chicago that you are your family can attend throughout the year to learn about and celebrate the uniques heritages and cultures that make up our great country. 

In March, Ridgeville Park District celebrates Women's History Month!

Click HERE for a link to events in Chicago that you can be a part of! 

Ridgeville Park District celebrates the accomplishments of...

Grace Wilbur Trout

Grace Wilbur Trout was an American suggragist instrumental in getting the Illinois legislature to pass a law allowing women to vote in local and national elections. She was born on March 18, 1864 in Maquoketa, Iowa.

She married George William Trout and had four children, one son dying in childhood and one son dying in 1912 at the age of 21.

Trout became president of the Chicago Political Equality League in 1910, originally founded in 1894. The league published pamphlets and circulated petitions to lobby the state legislature to grant women voting rights.

In 1910, Trout and other activists such as Catherine Waugh McCulloch made speaking tours of Illinois arguing for suffrage. Two years later, at the annual convention of the Illinois Equal Suffrage Association (IESA) on October 1–2, 1912, Trout was elected president of that association. She changed the IESA's tactics, setting new goals such as creating more local organizations and lobbying individual legislators to support suffrage.

A partial suffrage bill was introduced in 1913, permitting women to vote "for Presidential electors and for all local offices not specifically named in the Illinois Constitution", but not for state representatives, Congressional representatives, or governor.Trout mobilized a public show of support and the resulting bill was passed on June 11 (83 votes for, 58 votes against) and signed by Governor Dunne on June 26, 1913. Efforts to repeal or weaken the law in 1915 failed, in part due to the IESA's opposition.

Trout's goals did not extend to challenging racial segregation. When African-American Ida B. Wells wanted to march in a March 3, 1913 demonstration in Washington DC, Trout demanded that segregation be preserved to avoid offending Southern marchers who might boycott the event, and therefore all the black suffragists would have to march in their own group, not with their respective state delegations. While Trout was personally opposed to such exclusion, she was more concerned with avoiding the potential boycott. The day of the event, Wells "slipped out of the crowd along the parade route" to join the Illinois delegation.

In 1921 Trout moved to Jacksonville, Florida and became the first president of the Planning and Advisory Board and president of the Jacksonville Garden Club. She resided at an estate called Marabanong.

Trout died on October 21, 1955 in Jacksonville, Florida and was buried in Evergreen Cemetery in Jacksonville, Florida.

Learn more about Grace's accomplishments. 


 In February, Ridgeville Park District celebrates Black History Month!

Click HERE for a link to events in Chicago that you can be a part of! 


Special Announcement: On March 9th at 7:45pm, RPD welcomes President of the Evanston/North Shore NAACP, Reverend Dr. Michael C.R. Nabors to our board meeting to speak with us! 

Ridgeville Park District celebrates the accomplishments of...

Reverend Dr. Michael Nabors

Senior Pastor-Elect
Reverend Dr. Michael C. R. Nabors is senior pastor of the Second Baptist Church of Evanston, Illinois. He was called to the church in December of 2014 after serving New Calvary Baptist Church of Detroit, Michigan for sixteen years. He also served as Assistant Pastor at Shiloh Baptist Church of Trenton, New Jersey and as Pastor of First Baptist Church of Princeton, New Jersey.

Most recently, Dr. Nabors has also served as Director of the Master of Divinity and Student Life Programs at Ecumenical Theological Seminary in Detroit where he is professor of Homiletics and African American Religious History. He also taught at Ashland Theological Seminary in Ashland, Ohio; Calvin Theological Seminary in Grand Rapids, Michigan; and Marygrove College in Detroit, Michigan for the past ten years. His primary academic interest is in helping students practice homiletical preparation for preaching in the changing world of the 21st century. He has used Samuel Proctor’s “Hegelian dialectic”, Paul Scott Wilson’s “Four Pages of the Sermon”, and William Buechner’s literary genre as a foundation for his preaching courses. His primary church interest is in building bridges to erase the gap between community and university, the African American religious experience and the academy.

Dr. Nabors earned his undergraduate degree in English and Creative Writing at Western Michigan University in Kalamazoo, Michigan. He earned the Master of Divinity and Master of Theology degrees at Princeton Theological Seminary in Princeton, New Jersey. He completed his Doctor of Ministry degree as a Samuel DeWitt Proctor Fellow at United Theological Seminary in Dayton, Ohio. He was a Fellow in the Sustaining Pastoral Excellence Program of Lilly Endowment, Inc., as well as a Fellow in the Pastor-Theologian Program led by the Institute of Theological Study.

Dr. Nabors has received over 100 community, church and ministry awards for leadership and service in New Jersey and Michigan. Before leaving Princeton, New Jersey, the Mayor and City Council commemorated his leadership by naming October 12th as “Dr. Michael Nabors Day.” He has been president of the Princeton and Trenton, New Jersey branches of the NAACP, the Michigan Progressive Baptist Convention, and Chairman of the Board for Detroit East, Inc., and Gateway Community Health.

Dr. Nabors is married to Sydni Nabors and is the proud father of six children: three who are adults; Spencer Alexandria, 17; Pierce Alexander, 11; and Parker Anne, 6.