Breaking News Bar
updated: 4/2/2013 10:28 AM

Moving Picture: South Elgin handyman stays plenty busy

hello
Success - Article sent! close
  • Video: Moving Picture: Parks and Rec

  • John Tyree of South Elgin Parks and Rec Department checks out every piece of equipment at the parks under his care. He makes sure nothing is loose, broken or has graffiti on it.

       John Tyree of South Elgin Parks and Rec Department checks out every piece of equipment at the parks under his care. He makes sure nothing is loose, broken or has graffiti on it.
    Laura Stoecker | Staff Photographer

  • Tyree gets a phone call redirecting him to another assignment. He and members of the department are constantly on the go taking care of something within the parks, for the village hall or the police department's office.

       Tyree gets a phone call redirecting him to another assignment. He and members of the department are constantly on the go taking care of something within the parks, for the village hall or the police department's office.
    Laura Stoecker | Staff Photographer

  • Tyree chats with the Easter Bunny (aka Tessa Eggebrecht of South Elgin) before their next Easter basket delivery. This is Tyree's favorite event his department produces, and he gets a kick out of the children's reactions.

       Tyree chats with the Easter Bunny (aka Tessa Eggebrecht of South Elgin) before their next Easter basket delivery. This is Tyree's favorite event his department produces, and he gets a kick out of the children's reactions.
    Laura Stoecker | Staff Photographer

  • Above, Tyree works on replacing wooden boards on the float to be used for the Easter Bunny basket delivery. Tyree helped build the float from scratch more than 12 years ago, and the department uses it for many events they host. Tyree's job description includes plumbing, electrical and carpentry work, along with equipment upkeep. At left, Tyree even tests out the playground equipment in the winter, when there are fewer kids in the parks.

       Above, Tyree works on replacing wooden boards on the float to be used for the Easter Bunny basket delivery. Tyree helped build the float from scratch more than 12 years ago, and the department uses it for many events they host. Tyree's job description includes plumbing, electrical and carpentry work, along with equipment upkeep. At left, Tyree even tests out the playground equipment in the winter, when there are fewer kids in the parks.
    Laura Stoecker | Staff Photographer

  • John Tyree hands off the baskets for the next delivery to the Easter Bunny (aka Tessa Eggebrecht of South Elgin). The South Elgin Parks and Recreation Department visited several homes recently making deliveries to children's front doors.

       John Tyree hands off the baskets for the next delivery to the Easter Bunny (aka Tessa Eggebrecht of South Elgin). The South Elgin Parks and Recreation Department visited several homes recently making deliveries to children's front doors.
    Laura Stoecker | Staff Photographer

  • Tyree even tests out the playground equipment in the winter, when there are fewer kids in the parks.

       Tyree even tests out the playground equipment in the winter, when there are fewer kids in the parks.
    Laura Stoecker | Staff Photographer

  • Tyree checks out every piece of equipment at the parks under his care. He then fills out a detailed report and checklist marking his finds and will follow up on it quickly.

       Tyree checks out every piece of equipment at the parks under his care. He then fills out a detailed report and checklist marking his finds and will follow up on it quickly.
    Laura Stoecker | Staff Photographer

 
 

Thirteen years ago, John Tyree found his dream job.

He knew it would be the perfect fit for him -- days filled with a variety of hands-on projects, his office would often be outdoors, and a place where he could make a positive impact on the community.

At the South Elgin Parks and Recreation Department, he gets to do all of that.

Tyree's job description is an extensive to-do list, including safety checks and maintenance of equipment and shelters at 18 parks, replacing boards on picnic tables, installing new park signs, maintaining all the equipment used for landscaping within the parks, and even helping out with projects at the village hall.

He's even had a hand in building bird houses and a heron perch for the parks. Tyree enjoys that each day will always be different from the next.

"To see a smile on a kid's face from some of the stuff we do, it's unbelievable," Tyree says. "It'll change anybody's life. It's just a great feeling."

To Tyree, parks also symbolize the foundation of a strong community.

"(They) help people bond together," he says.

Parks offer a place for the community to come together and to be involved in family activities where relationships can be formed. Tyree says when his department is going to build a new park, it's a community affair.

"We have all the neighborhood kids come in and put their opinion into what should be here," Tyree says. "They come up with their own charts of how they would like things. It's pretty cool how it works. Kids get involved when you get them involved, then they'll take better care of it."

Tyree is hopeful the village can meet a one million dollar goal to build a handicapped-accessible park with SEBA Park in the next few years.

"There's not a lot of (similar parks) around and we're trying to make that happen," Tyree says. "It's a great investment for the community."

Several pieces already purchased were tried out at last year's RiverFest Express during the special needs night, which was a big hit with the kids.

His handiwork is even evident in the trailer he built that carries the Easter Bunny to events each spring.

One of the biggest rewards for Tyree is watching kids enjoy the results of his labor.

"Some people get lucky and they do what they like to do and some people don't, so I've been fortunate," he says.

Share

Interested in reusing this article?

Custom reprints are a powerful and strategic way to share your article with customers, employees and prospects.

The YGS Group provides digital and printed reprint services for Daily Herald. Complete the form to the right and a reprint consultant will contact you to discuss how you can reuse this article.

Need more information about reprints? Visit our Reprints Section for more details.

Contact information ( * required )

Name * Company Telephone * E-mail *

Message (optional)

Success - Reprint request sent Click to close
Comments ()
Guidelines: Keep it civil and on topic; no profanity, vulgarity, slurs or personal attacks. People who harass others or joke about tragedies will be blocked. If a comment violates these standards or our terms of service, click the X in the upper right corner of the comment box. To find our more, read our FAQ.
    help here