Moraine Township

News of the Township
Community Volunteers Install Mooney Cemetery Rain Gardens

For Immediate Release
Date: Week of September 9, 2013
Contact: Anne Flanigan Bassi, Supervisor, 847-432-3240

Community Volunteers Install Mooney Cemetery Rain Gardens

Over 70 volunteers donned working clothes and got down 'n' dirty helping Moraine Township install and mulch 750 plants in two rain gardens Friday and Saturday, September 6 and 7. The project is designed to help address chronic water issues in a sustainable way at the Township's Mooney Cemetery in Highland Park located on Ridge near Deerfield Road.

Individuals from groups as diverse as the Boy Scouts, Rotary Club, YouthBuild Lake County, Highland Park/Highwood League of Women Voters, and restoration volunteers from the Park District of Highland Park worked alongside of neighbors of the cemetery. In some cases, they were joined by volunteers whose ancestors are buried in the historic cemetery. They all worked diligently to bring the project to life under the supervision of volunteer Master Gardeners from the University of Illinois Extension and Botanic Gardens, Park District of Highland Park restoration staff, and Stormwater Management Watershed Planners.

Also on hand, literally digging in, was Anne Flanigan Bassi, Township Supervisor. She was delighted that so many people came to help out.

"The project was designed to address drainage issues and replace an aging asphalt driveway in a sustainable way by including environmentally-sensitive components, such as pervious pavers and two rain gardens," said Bassi. "Having the installation of the rain garden completed with volunteers saved the Township significant expense and gave us all the satisfaction of working together to accomplish something lovely and worthwhile."

"The Township has struggled with water issues at the cemetery for years. With surfaces less than 1% in pitch, it is very difficult to get land to drain efficiently, and ponding occurs in depressions," noted Landscape Architect Nancy Hannick. "Permeable pavers on the driveway allow water to be absorbed below the road bed and directed via pipes to two rain gardens."

The project was partially funded thanks to a generous grant from the Stormwater Management Commission Watershed Management Board. It was initiated and awarded during the term of the previous Supervisor Mari Barnes.

"We look forward to the time when visitors to the cemetery will enjoy a lovely, peaceful spot for contemplation," noted Bassi.

Later this fall, the public will be invited to take a tour of the project with Master Gardeners and the Landscape Architect providing instruction about the benefits of natural drainage solutions.

As always, details about Moraine Township activities and services can be found online at Office hours are Monday through Friday, 8:30am to 4:30pm. The Township office is located at 777 Central Avenue in Highland Park. For more information call Supervisor Bassi at 847-432-3240 or email


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777 Central Av, Highland Park IL 60035, 847-432-3240