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Around and About in West Chicago - 23 Dec 2009

Around and About
  • Special Services for Christmas 2009
  • Christmas Love Feast
  • DuPage County Crime Stoppers
  • School Mental Health Support Grant

Churches in the community are holding special services for Christmas 2009.



  • Church of the Savior Christmas Eve Service is at 5:00 p.m. at Faith Community Church, 910 Main Street.


  • Community Fellowship Church, 28W240 North Avenue, Christmas Eve services are at 5:00 and 7:00 p.m. The theme is “Christmas Carols and Their Stories.”


  • Faith Community Church, 910 Main Street, Christmas Eve Candlelight service is at 7:00 p.m.


  • First United Methodist Church and First Congregational Church, 643 East Washington Street, Christmas Eve Candlelight service is at 7:30 p.m.


  • Hope Evangelical Lutheran Church, 1S260 Joliet Street, Christmas Eve service is at 5:00 p.m. and the Christmas Day service is at 9:00 a.m.


  • Resurrection Anglican Church, 450 East Roosevelt Road, Suite 203, Christmas Eve service is at 4:30 p.m. The Christmas Day service is at 10:00 a.m.


  • On Christmas Eve for St. Andrew Lutheran Church, the 4:00 p.m. service features the Contemporary Band and the 6:00 p.m. service features the Handbell Choir. The Hispanic worship service is at 7:30 p.m. The traditional candlelight service is at 10:00 p.m. All services are at Indian Knoll School, ON645 Indian Knoll Road.


  • Christmas Eve services for St. Mary’s Church start at 3:30 p.m. with caroling led by the church choir followed at 4:00 p.m. by the children’s Mass, at 6:00 p.m. the Spanish Mass, and at 6:30 p.m. the English Mass. These take place at Community High School District 94, 326 Joliet Street. At the church, 140 Oakwood Street, the choir sings carols at 9:30 p.m. and Mass is at 10:00 p.m. On Christmas Day, the English Masses are at 8:00 a.m. and 9:30 a.m. The Spanish Mass is at 11:30 a.m.


  • St. Michael’s United Church of Christ, 400 West Washington Street, Christmas Eve Candlelight service is at 10:30 p.m.


  • Trinity Lutheran Church, 331 George Street, Christmas Eve services are at 5:30 and 11:00 p.m. The Christmas Day service is at 10:00 a.m.


  • Wheaton Bible Church, 27W500 North Avenue, Christmas Eve services are at 4:00 and 6:00 p.m.


  • Willow Creek Church/DuPage Christmas Eve services are at 2:00 and 4:00 p.m. The theme is “Recycled Christmas: Old is New Again.” Childcare is available for children from birth through the age of five. Services are held in the Fine Arts building at Wheaton Academy, 900 Prince Crossing Road.

 Merry Christmas to all!


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        At the Monday, December 21, 2009 City Council meeting, Mayor Mike Kwasman said, “During the Christmas season, we have a sharing and giving spirit, one that should be continue all year long. Think of others, keep the food pantry shelves stocked and help where you can. West Chicago is a community that cares. Enjoy and have a Merry Christmas!”



        Sincere sympathy is extended to the family of Beatrice Lenertz, age 94, who passed away Sunday, December 20, 2009. She worked as an assistant assessor for Winfield Township. Frank Lenertz, president of the West Chicago Park District Board of Commissioners, is one of her four sons. The others are Ed (Lee) Lenertz, Jim Lenertz and Richard (Christine) Lenertz.



        First United Methodist Church and First Congregational Church, 643 East Washington Street, holds a Christmas Love Feast at its 10:00 a.m. worship service Sunday, December 27, 2009. This is a special service of word and song recounting the birth of Christ. Activities include the serving of hot chocolate, coffee, Moravian Love Buns and Moravian Ginger Cookies.



        Chelsea Place, 27W361 North Avenue, has several options for New Year’s Eve. Dinner reservations received before 6:30 p.m. are for two-hour seatings. Persons making reservations for 8:00 p.m. or later can enjoy party favors and champagne at midnight. Entertainment is the Déjà Blu Band, playing jazz, blues and popular songs. To make reservations of for more information, call the restaurant at (630) 876-2000.



        Starting at 9:00 p.m. New Year’s Eve, Fontana Blu, 124 Main Street, has a food buffet and open bar for the price of $50. Menu includes beef stroganoff, Italian pasta, salad and rolls. A DJ provides the entertainment. For more information, call (630) 231-0303.



        The West Chicago Lions Club donated $2,000 to New Life Bilingual Church food pantry Tuesday, December 22, 2009.



        DuPage County Crime Stoppers is accepting applications to fill vacancies on its volunteer advisory board, including Division 4, which is West Chicago’s area. Persons must be 18 years or older, an American citizen, DuPage County resident, pass an in-depth background check, have access to a computer with an interlink connection and e-mail. Promoting the Crime Stoppers concept among its divisions is the primary responsibility of board members. To apply, call (630) 484-3491 or visit the website www.dupagecrimestoppers.com, click on contact section and request an application.



        WeGo Wildcats, Community High School District 94 Special Olympics basketball team, lost their first game of the season Monday, December 14, 2009. It was a close game against Hinsdale South, with the score volleying back and forth until the very end. The final score was 30-27.



        Congratulations to Ivory Flores and Eric Schwab upon their engagement. Both are former residents of West Chicago.



        West Chicago Park District staff and volunteers were busy helping Santa Claus with calls and letters. With the special telephone line to the North Pole, Santa talked to a total of 341 children, 122 in English and 219 in Spanish. Anna Rosales, district special events coordinator, said this year some of the calls were quite sad. The requests were for parents to find a job, to have enough food to eat, to have a friend that really likes them and to find a heart for their mother. Fifty-four children received answers to their letters, 30 written in English and 24 in Spanish.



        The West Chicago Park District had a successful Operation Support Our Troops project. In addition to colleting three large boxes and several large bags, the district received a $100 donation to purchase supplies from the West Chicago Rotary Club. Nearly fifty youths in the after school programs wrote letters, plus some residents did also, said district recreation coordinator Denise Scott.



        The winner in the West Chicago Park District Holiday House Decorating competition is the Velazquez family, 1225 Thomas Drive. Runners up were the Barrett family, 29W255 Brown Street, and the Stibal family, 424 Highland Avenue. Helping special events coordinator Anna Rosalez judge were some senior citizens involved in district programs.



        At the Monday, December 21, 2009 meeting, City Council approved the resolution to appoint Valeria Perez as the City Freedom of Information officer and to designate Michelle Baldino, Gary Binder, Laurie Jensen and Arlene Fisher as the City employees to receive Open Meetings Act compliance training. This meets the requirements of the amendments to Section 5 and 10 of Public Act 96-0542.



        West Chicago Elementary School District 33, in partnership with Metropolitan Family Services-DuPage, is the recipient of a School Mental Health Support grant. The $75,000 award is yearly for up to three years contingent upon future state appropriations. The program’s goal is the provision of a coordinated system for early identification of child and adolescent mental health problems and linkage to appropriate services. This helps ensure students and their families receive needed mental healthcare and support services to succeed at home, school and the community. In addition to clinical assessments and treatment services, education to students, families and staff includes social and emotional development, the attempt to increase the awareness of signs and symptoms of mental health problems, enhancement of resilience and protective factors and importance and means of positive parenting methods.



        Community High School District 94 Promoting Awareness of Wildcat Success recipients for the month of December are Jaime Dubon and Amy Tedeschi from the Humanities Division, Jacob Kimball and Gwen Mitchell from Information & Technology Division, Eric Cuautle and Becky Hooper from Language Arts Division, Dylan Dewey and Blair Gage from Math & Science Division, Ryan Lakics and Maya Skorupski from Physical Development Division, Zach Gebis from Special Education Division, Katrina Noelke from Support Services Division and Pete Ciolino and Lucas Cruz from World Languages Division.



        ExxonMobil recently presented a $750 grant to Turner School. Mike Khetarpal, owner of the West Chicago Mobil located at 219 South Neltnor Boulevard, wrote the grant. The ExxonMobil Educational Alliance program, funded by the Exxon Mobil Corporation, provides Exxon retailers the opportunity to invest in the future of their communities, believing the local retailer is the best qualified to work with local educators in identifying programs and schools most in need of support.



        The West Chicago Chamber of Commerce and Industry participated in the ribbon cutting and open house Tuesday, October 27, 2009 at Norandex Building Distributions, Inc., 1110 Commerce Drive, one of the 180 distributors in the United States. Norandex/Reynolds is a world-class manufacturer and national wholesale distributor with a broad range of products, including exterior siding, windows, doors, shutters, accent products for either new construction, remodeling or light commercial applications. The distributor evolved from Reynolds Aluminum, which was established in 1946. Corporate headquarters are in Hudson, Ohio. The parent company is Saint Gorbain, a multinational construction materials corporation located in Paris, France. “We had the quality product in the area the parent company wanted to provide as a full construction and remodeling component for the corporation,” explained Area Sales Leader Shawn McAllistar. The Norandex center here had been located in Aurora. “We needed a building with more space and the location in West Chicago not only meets our needs, but also provides our customers with more convenient access to our facility.



        The DuPage Regional Office of Education selected West Chicago Middle School as a Spotlight School at its DuPage 1: Leadership for Excellence and Equity for All conference Monday, February 1, 2010 at Westin Lombard Yorktown Center. The school is one of the four districts to be in the Spotlight at the conference and recognized for school improvement efforts. West Chicago Middle School staff will present initiatives and actions they have undertaken to address academic achievement and/or community involvement disparities. Patricia Roszkowski is the principal and Jeanne Blanchard and Josh Dakins are the assistant principals.



        Although as a new company formed in 2009, Training Plus Inc. has not only understood the challenges of the business community in the current economic conditions, but also stressed the importance of training to meet the challenges of the future. The company provided training for about 20 businesses and their employees. Also, it assisted companies in receiving approximately $157,000 in grant reimbursements towards the training cost between state and local grant agencies. The president/training consultant is West Chicago resident Lolly Frederick and the vice president/training consultant is Mary Lou Emami.



        West Chicago Elementary School District 33, in partnership with Breaking Free, the West Chicago Police Department, the West Chicago Park District, Northern Illinois University, Literacy DuPage and Benedictine College, received a 21st Century Community Learning Center Grant.  The grant amount is $150,000 a year up to five years. The 21st CCLC addresses risk factors through after school and summer programming, additional academic instruction, parent education, family nutrition and fitness services, parent literacy classes and family safety education.  The objective is to increase student capacity for constructive decision-making, drug awareness and conflict resolution skills, positive behavior, student achievement in reading, math and science, positive recreational activities and positive adult role model contact, positive parenting skills, positive family relationships, second language literacy for parents, family health and nutrition/exercise education and family community safety.






My e-mail address is merleburl@earthlink.net.

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