Get to Know the NPN Portage Park & Old Irving Parg Group - Part 2

Written by: Amy Johnson

The NPN Neighborhood groups are a great way to make new friends, find playdates for your little ones and discover new resources.

The Old Irving Park-Portage Park Neighborhood Group covers two distinct neighborhoods. Last week we put the spotlight on Lisa, one of the volunteers of the group who lives in Portage Park.   We turn our attention this week to the the husband and wife volunteer team of Cyrus and Katie Clausen who live in Old Irving Park.   Together, these volunteers plan fun get-togethers every month!   Join them at their upcoming event on Nov 19 for a baking class the whole family will enjoy!

We asked Cy and Katie a few questions to help you get to know them and the group.  You can always reach out to them directly with any questions or event ideas at  Look forward to seeing you soon!

Get to Know Cyrus and Katie:

Tell us about you and your family.   My wife Katie and I have been married for 8 years.  We met in college - at Marquette.  We have a 3.5 year old daughter, Maggie, and an 8 year old English bulldog, Darby.  Katie grew up in the northwest suburbs and I grew up on a farm in northwest Iowa.   

Why did you start to volunteer with NPN?   We started volunteering in the summer of 2010 when we saw messages on the website that our neighborhood group was without a volunteer/leader to plan monthly events.

What do you think is the best part about living in Old Irivng Park?   We like all of the old, unique houses and the proximity to public transportation (both the CTA and Metra) and the expressways.  Also, our house sits on a larger than normal city lot with a driveway and that is a huge bonus.

Why should someone check out the OIP/PP group?  We feel the neighborhood is very diverse with very solid neighborhood groups who are always trying to make it a better place to live/work/play.  Old Irving Park has some amazing houses - several well over 100 years old - that can give you a good lesson on what Chicago life was when our neighborhood was considered far, far away from downtown.

What was your favorite event so far this year?   Our favorite event this year was our ice cream social at the Disney II playground at the end of summer.  It rained all day but cleared out for the evening event.  All of the kids had fun playing and eating ice cream and I feel a lot of parents were able to make connections.

What's your favorite memory of Thanksgiving from growing up?  Eating, watching football and knowing that Christmas was only a month away.

Thank you, Cyrus and Katie!  We appreciate all the great events you plan for NPN parents!  If you are interested in volunteering to plan events in your neighborhood, contact Amy at

Posted on November 15, 2011 at 9:10 AM