In 2021, the GROWSS committee of NLCCC received a Neighborhood Access Program Grant from the City of Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events to bring together eight of the community gardens that have shipping containers on their sites. The North Lawndale Whirligig project was born. Whirligigs are sophisticated weather vanes, which not only indicate wind direction and speed, but also help each garden tell the story of its caretakers and present in a fun and creative way the mission that drives them.
NL Whirligigs: A Look Into Each Garden
HOMAN GROWN is a social enterprise focused on propagating urban durable perennials, and on creating regenerative edible and ornamental landscapes.
WOFORO DUA PA A
"when you climb a good tree"
symbol of support, cooperation and encouragement
LOVE BLOOMS HERE is a social enterprise offering multiple pathways to empowering the community and building resilient food systems on Chicago’s West side.
symbol of wisdom, creativity and the complexities of life
PermaPark is a unique public art-space that is based on the principles of organic architecture and permaculture.
1581 S. Spaulding Ave., Chicago, IL 60623
Spaulding Memorial Garden is one of Gardeneers’ North Lawndale school gardens, a sunny, buzzing green space designed to give students in food insecure communities equal access to healthy fruits and vegetables.
3618 W. Douglas Blvd., Chicago, IL 60623
The Stone Temple Peace Heritage Garden is a community gathering and educational space. All produce grown is offered at no cost to people from North Lawndale.
Southwest Corner of 13th Street and Pulaski Road
YMEN BIKE BOX is a bike shop in partnership with the youth development organization Young Men’s Educational Network. They provide bike repair alongside sales and rentals of refurbished used bikes, at little or no cost to residents.
Whirligig Designing: Wooden Prototype Models
We laser cut all of our whirligig prototypes out of wood and were able to share one with each of the eight participating gardens! Pictured below are the whirligig models for YMEN, Love Blooms Here and MLK District Garden.
Whirligig Designing: In The City & The Studio
One of our project managers, Odile Compagnon, was able to insert the whirligig designs into a digital computer program to see what our models would look like in actual places throughout the city. Here she inserted the MLK District Garden whirligig into the garden space at The Art Institute of Chicago!
NL Whirligig Booklet
After many months of design workshops, meetings with our garden liaisons and contractors along with site visits, we celebrated all of the completed Whirligigs last weekend on October 15th & 16th during Open House Chicago. If you didn't get a chance to view our booklet, take a look here:
Whirligig Celebration: Thank You
Our Whirligig Team would like to say THANK YOU to everyone who was involved in making this project a success in North Lawndale! Thank you to everyone who stopped by our table during the Open House Chicago weekend, it was so nice seeing all of you and seeing the joy on everyone's faces who after seeing the completed whirligigs!
Have You Seen All of the Whirligigs Yet?
Take a walk around North Lawndale and check out all of the whirligigs installed at each of our community garden partner sites! Here are a few shots we took of some of the whirligigs in action!