by Carl Strang
The most dramatic event at Mayslake Forest Preserve last week came during one of the several storms that passed through the area on consecutive days. An old ash tree on the mansion grounds was struck by lightning.
This example indicates why taking cover during a thunderstorm is well advised.
There were several pieces like this, sprayed over 180 degrees. I don’t know the exact trajectory they would have followed, but it’s all too easy to imagine a person standing in the wrong place at the wrong moment being impaled.
The tree had begun to show the effects of an emerald ash borer infestation, and a Forest Preserve District forestry crew took it down the next day. Fortunately there was no damage to the nearby Portiuncula Chapel or to First Folio Theater’s summer stage. The weddings and the shows will go on.