The citizens of Wheeling, Illinois, voted to give themselves the gift of a Park District on December 23, 1960, with a special election held at Mark Twain School. The first meeting of the Park District was held on January 11, 1961, at Wheeling Village Hall, and was presided over by newly-elected Commissioners Arthur Aronson, Arthur Brown, Audrae Duke, Ralph Neubauer, and Theodore Scanlon. Brown became the first Park Board President. Park District programs were held in the schools and on the playgrounds of School District 21. The next four decades were spent acquiring, developing, and maintaining open space for guests to enjoy.