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Wicker Park, Bucktown, West Town

Holstein Park’s Preschool Needs Rugs, Markers, Colored Pencils After Break-In. Here’s How You Can Help.

Someone trashed "Kiddie College." Now neighbors of the Bucktown park are rallying to replace items that were stolen or destroyed.

The Kiddie College classroom inside Holstein Park was ransacked over the weekend. On Monday, multiple items were missing or destroyed.
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BUCKTOWN — Following a break-in last month, the preschool classroom at Holstein Park is still in need of several items.

Neighbors can help by purchasing needed items via an Amazon Wishlist. Neighbors can also contribute by donating to Friends of Holstein Park.

In mid-November, a thief (or thieves) broke into the “Kiddie College” classroom at Holstein Park, 2200 N. Oakley Blvd, police said. 

The break-in occurred sometime between 4 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 16, and 6 a.m. the following Monday, Chicago Police Department spokesperson Kellie Bartoli said. No one is in custody.

Photos taken after the break-in showed fire extinguisher exhaust coating floors, walls and windows inside the main lobby of the building and inside the pre-k classroom. 

In the classroom, tiny red chairs had been flipped. A rectangular yellow table laid on its side.

Several essentials, including an education area rug, had been stolen or destroyed. A fish tank was demolished.

Whoever broke in did not stop at Kiddie College; photos showed computers and printers knocked over and papers askew inside the park office.

On the Monday following the break-in, neighbors came out in droves to help park leaders clean up the classroom, Bucktown resident Michelle Maher said. 

By 4 p.m. that day, the classroom was clean, but mostly empty. 

An Amazon Wishlist was initially compiled by community park leaders listing destroyed or stolen items needing to be replaced, but was taken down.

The new wishlist was updated last week.

Kiddie College is split into fall and spring semesters and meets 10:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m. Monday-Friday. Admission per semester is $350 for residents and $700 for non-residents. 

Area North detectives continue to investigate the crime.

Those with information can reach detectives by calling 312-744-8263 or by sending an anonymous tip online.

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The Kiddie College classroom inside Holstein Park was ransacked over the weekend. Among other items, a fish tank was reported missing.
Credit: Provided
Over the weekend, Holstein Park, 2200 N. Oakley Blvd., was ransacked and vandalized with fire extinguisher exhaust. Office equipment was left askew.
Credit: Provided
Over the weekend, Holstein Park, 2200 N. Oakley Blvd., was ransacked and vandalized with fire extinguisher exhaust. Office equipment was left askew.
Credit: Provided
Over the weekend, Holstein Park, 2200 N. Oakley Blvd., was ransacked and vandalized with fire extinguisher exhaust. Items from a classroom were stolen, too.

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