First Annual “Walk On!” in Memory of Park Manager Chuck Papanos

First Annual "Walk On!" in Memory of Park Manager Chuck Papanos
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“Walk On!”

The Naperville Park District is hosting a new walk, “Walk On!,” in memory of late park manager Chuck Papanos and to support lymphoma research.

Papanos died last summer from T-cell lymphoma. He served the park district for 20 years as the Parks North/Riverwalk Manager. He managed Naperville’s Riverwalk and many community parks including Centennial Beach and Nike Sports Complex. He was also “the quiet hero” behind city events like the Riverwalk Art Fair and Healing Field of Honor at Rotary Hill,” according to a press release.

“You name it, he was there at 5 a.m. making it happen,” said Jan Erickson, former Riverwalk administrator. “That included managing the logistics for all the special events that happened on the Riverwalk, including the Last Fling. He also was there to help with the day-to-day responsibilities of clearing snow, sandbagging for hours during floods at Centennial Beach and walking the 1.5-mile pathway to ensure it met his high standards.”

The first annual “Walk On!” will take place July 30 at 7 p.m. at the Riverwalk Grand Pavilion. Registration information can be found on the Lymphoma Research Foundation website.

Dedication Ceremony

The Naperville Park District will also hold a dedication ceremony for Papanos on July 30 at noon, which is open to the community. It will take place at the garden planted in his honor, located just west of the Grand Pavilion. The dedication was first planned in 2020 but was postponed due to the pandemic.