Less than 60 years ago, Park Forest, Illinois, began as a vision of this country's post-World War II future. Located some 40 miles south of Chicago's Loop, Park Forest was the first privately financed, completely planned community ever built in the United States. It was hailed as a "G.I. Town"-a place where veterans could find affordable housing and put down roots. From the date Park Forest was incorporated as a Village in 1949, the community has created a distinguished history for itself, and to this day many of the original residents still take an active part in Village life. Park Forest: Dreams and Challenges brings to life the accomplishments of this inspiring community, which possesses two All-America City awards for its volunteer efforts in building for the future. Featured in the book are historic images of the first regional shopping center built in the nation after the War and the largest publicly-owned swimming complex in the state. Park Forest is also home to both the highly rated Illinois Philharmonic Orchestra and the Illinois Theatre Center, a nationally known repertory company.