On March 1, 2022, the Naperville Woman’s Club (NWC) will celebrate “125 Years in the Heart of Naperville.” Founded in 1897 as a literary society, the NWC quickly turned its attention to what would become its mission statement: “Promoting community improvement by enhancing the lives of others through volunteer service.” While those efforts have taken many forms over the club’s 125 years, they have always focused on three areas: Art, Education, and Community Service. Most known for The Naperville Fine Art & Artisan Fair (now in its 62nd year), the club also supports the development of young artists through its Young Adult Art Contest and two arts scholarships. Other scholarships and year-round educational programs fulfill the Education arm of the mission, while cash and in-kind donations to local social service organizations address the mission area of Community Service. Another noted achievement of the club is in historic preservation. In 1925 club members purchased the German Evangelical People’s Church at 14 S. Washington Street in downtown Naperville and have called it home ever since. The carefully preserved building, designated a Naperville Local Landmark in 2011, is home to not only the club’s meetings and events, but also is utilized by community organizations and individuals as a space for everything from business meetings to weddings to recitals.
125th Anniversary for the Naperville Woman’s Club
Naperville Woman’s Club members have planned several activities to commemorate the club’s 125th anniversary. On March 1, members of the public are invited to join club members at the Naperville Cemetery at 2:00 p.m. for a wreath-laying on the gravesites of two of NWC’s early club presidents. Afterward, invited guests and club members will gather at the clubhouse for a celebratory reception, featuring remarks by noted Naperville historian, Bryan Ogg. The “125 Years in the Heart of Naperville” theme will be woven into all the club’s 2022 activities and events. Club members will be challenged to read or reread the club’s commemorative history, written by past club member and noted author, Georgiann Baldino. NWC will also partner with the DuPage Historical Society and the Naperville Garden Club to promote recognition of the club’s dedication to the welfare and improvement of Naperville throughout its history. A display depicting the club’s history will be exhibited at the Naperville Municipal Center, the DuPage Historical Society, and the Naperville Public Library. See the club’s Facebook page and website for more details.
Julie Cunningham, Co-President
Wendy Piepho, Vice President, Communications and Co-Chair, 125th Anniversary Committee
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