Naperville Park District to dedicate Chuck Papanos Honorary Garden July 30
Naperville Park District is honoring the late Chuck Papanos, former North Parks and Riverwalk operations manager, with a dedication ceremony on Friday, July 30.
The ceremony will take place at noon at the garden planted in Papanos' honor, located just west of the Grand Pavilion at 912 Sindt Court.
The dedication had been planned for 2020 as a tribute to Papanos prior to his retirement from the park district, but was postponed due to the pandemic. The community is welcome to attend the ceremony.
Prior to his passing last summer from T-cell lymphoma, Papanos managed Naperville's Riverwalk and the many community parks on the city's north side, including Centennial Beach and Nike Sports Complex.
For nearly 20 years, colleagues say, he was the "quiet hero" behind the Riverwalk's care as well as events like the Riverwalk Art Fair, the Sprint Triathlon, and the Healing Field of Honor at Rotary Hill.
In addition to Chuck's wife, Ann Marie Papanos, those who plan to speak at the garden dedication include Park District Executive Director Ray McGury, who will serve as emcee; Bill Novack, the city's director of transportation, engineering and development; former Riverwalk administrator Jan Erickson; Rick Hitchcock, founder of Hitchcock Design Group; the park district's North Parks and Riverwalk staff.