As a Beverly resident, I wanted to thank you for your March 27 article highlighting the new stairs and other recent improvements within the Dan Ryan Woods.

For people who have not visited these facilities in the last few years, you would truly be amazed at the updated welcome center and the gorgeously remodeled pavilion at the bottom of the sledding hill.

Kudos to the Cook County commissioners for making these investments and making the Dan Ryan Woods an even more enjoyable visit.

I wanted to add that new sidewalks have also been recently installed to connect the historic 1930s Stone Creek Path (on the south side of 87th Street) to the sledding hill and walking stairs (on the north side of 87th street) via the 87th Street pedestrian underpass. This means that both sections of the Dan Ryan Woods are now easily accessible by bike, on foot or with stroller—without having to cross a busy street.

For fitness-minded folks who are planning to check out the new stairs, there is also a well-marked blacktop path (a one-mile loop) that circles the parking lot at the bottom of the sledding hill. On most good-weathered weekends, it is scattered with runners, seniors walking laps, families walking with kids, and bicycle riders who have moseyed over from the nearby Major Taylor Trail.

The plentiful shade, public restrooms and water fountains (operating during warmer months) make this a great (non-traffic) alternative for local bikers and runners.

With spring here (?) and summer coming, I wanted to highlight some of those recent additions.

The Dan Ryan Woods is truly a local treasure.

Bill Halvorsen