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Around and About in West Chicago - 25 Apr 2013

Around and About

  • Road Construction and Other Public Works Projects

  • Making Your Money Work Smarter!

  • Wellness Walk Day Friday, April 26

  • Second Annual Honor Flight Fundraiser

  • Kruse House Museum Opens




              It is the season for road construction and other public works projects. There are several on the map in West Chicago.  Per Public Works Director Rob Flatter, these are the updates as of April 15, 2013.


              The construction of North Factory Street has resumed, with a scheduled completion date in June.


              Pending a Community Development Block Grant award, reconstruction on Forest Avenue between Town and Pearl Roads would begin in the summer.


              Fremont Street parking at 124 Fremont Street, next to Tastee-Freez, is out for bid. Pending bid results, construction would begin in late May and be completed by mid-July.


              The Main Street Stairway Renovation Project for the stairways at 115 and 124 Main Street is out for bid. Included in the project are removal and replacement of the existing landscaping and stairway railings, installation of decorative lighting and concrete flatwork.


              The Main Street Tunnel Improvement Project is out for bid. Work in the project includes removal and replacement of Portland Cement Concrete ramps, plus the sidewalks and retaining walls. Other items involve the sheet piling with cast-in-place facing, drainage structure adjustments, tunnel and path lighting and brick paver installation, along with restoration and landscaping, located adjacent to 306 Main Street and Turner Court.


              Other projects pending design, bidding and determining locations are Citywide Sidewalk Replacement, additional street resurfacing projects, crack sealing, and roadway striping.


              The Illinois Department of Transportation projects continue on Route 64, North Avenue, and Route 38, Roosevelt Road.

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              The rain last Thursday caused cancellations and rescheduling of some events.


              The opening of the new exhibit, “Earth to Table,” at the West Chicago City Museum was delayed from the original date of Saturday, April 20, 2013 to Saturday, April 27, 2013. With the heavy rain, the roof developed two leaks, requiring the removal of the whole back half of the exhibit.


              Because of the heavy rains, street closures and early closing of school, the West Chicago Elementary School District 33 Town Hall and school board meetings are rescheduled to Thursday, April 25, 2013 in the Community room at West Chicago Middle School, 238 East Hazel Street, use Joliet Street entrance. The Town Hall meeting is at 5:00 p.m.  Presentation topics are updates on the Middle School expansion and district finances, followed by a question and answer period. The board meeting is at 7:00 p.m.


              The Game Day USA West Chicago Preseason Championships tournament was cancelled. West Chicago Park District crews were unable to reach the fields due to road closures.  Members of the teams coming from various locations in the state continued to be rerouted because of road closures.


              The West Chicago Park District changed the location for several upcoming meetings from the administrative office at 157 West Washington Street to the Dyer Maintenance Facility at 830 West Hawthorne Lane.  The time of 6:30 p.m. remains the same. The meetings are the Special Meeting, Wednesday, April 23, 2013, the Committee of the Whole meeting, Tuesday, May 7, 2013 and the regular Board meeting, Tuesday, May 14, 2013. Since the administrative building basement flooded, the meeting room space is needed for classes until the basement dries out and receives a professional cleaning.


              Both Community High School District 94 and West Chicago Elementary School District 33 closed early, but resumed full day schedules on Friday.


              The West Chicago Park District hosts a Soup & Bread event from 6:00 to 8:00 p.m. Thursday, April 25, 2013 at American Legion Post 300, 123 Main Street. The event is a community meal project designed as a grassroots way to raise money for Neighborhood Food Pantries. There is no fixed charge, but just donations of any amount. Soup is provided and guests can bring bread or desserts to share. Donating soup this month are Ruben Pineda, Dave Sabathne and Laura. Call the Park District office at (630) 231-9474 for more information.


              The West Chicago Garden Club meeting is Thursday, April 25, 2013 at Faith Community Church, 910 Main Street, and is open to the public. Social time is at 6:45 p.m., brief business meeting at 7:00 p.m. and the program at 7:15 p.m.


              The program is “New and Unusual.” The speaker is Geneva resident Meagan Provencher from Wasco Nursery.  She is an Illinois certified nursery professional with designations in woody and perennial identification. As a professional landscaper for more than 20 years, Provencher is known for her new and unique designs.


              The West Chicago Public Library District program, “Making Your Money Work Smarter!” is at 7:00 p.m. Thursday, April 25, 2013 in the meeting room, 118 West Washington Street. This is not a financial seminar, but a financial workshop. The speaker is Winfield resident Paul Daly, Investment Adviser/President of OMH Partner Group. He is a licensed Life/Health Insurance Agent and Investment Adviser Representative. Daly received his BA degree from Western Illinois University, with a major in economics and a minor in marketing.


              The program is part of the American Library Association’s Money Smart Week, April 20 through 27, 2013. This is a public awareness campaign to help consumers better manage their personal finances. To make a reservation, call the Library adult services department at (630) 231-1552, extension 4.


              West Chicago Elementary School District 33 holds its fifth annual Wellness Walk Day Friday, April 26, 2013. Students in all classes walk one mile during designated hours. Joining in the walk are city officials, school staff, parents and other persons in the community.  Times at the schools are 8:30 a.m. at Gary, 9:15 a.m. at West Chicago Middle School, 10:00 a.m. at Wegner, 10:30 a.m. at Pioneer, 12:35 p.m. at Currier, 1:00 p.m. at Indian Knoll, 1:30 p.m. at Turner and 2:00 p.m. at West Chicago Public Library for home school students. Persons must register in advance by calling WeGo Together for Kids Director for Wellness, Safety and Achievement Marjory Lewe-Brady at (630) 293-6000, extension 225.


              We Grow Dreams Garden Center, 1055 West Washington Street, holds its second annual Rummage Sale from Friday, April 26, through Sunday April 28, 2013. Hours on Friday and Saturday are 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. The Sunday hours are 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. and includes a Spring Open House. During the Open House, there are light refreshments and raffles. Raffle prizes include a $25 gift certificate, a personalized garden brick, herb baskets and a container arrangement. For further information, call the greenhouse at (630) 293-0100.


              The greenhouse is a not-for-profit organization providing training and job opportunities for persons with disabilities.


              Community High School District 94 Prom is at 7:00 p.m. Friday, April 26, 2013 at Diplomat West in Elmhurst. The theme is “Welcome to Atlantis.” The “All Night Long” after prom event is a midnight cruise on the Spirit of Chicago and open to students whether they attend prom or not. The after prom committee has partnered with CHS for approximately 20 years, holding various fundraisers to provide monies for the event and to keep the cost down for students.


              Wheaton Academy has two upcoming performances in the Fine Arts Center, 900 Prince Crossing Road. Evening in the Furnace, featuring improve, comedy and dance, is at 7:00 p.m. Friday, April 26, 2013. The Percussion Show is at 7:00 p.m. Monday, April 29, 2013.


              The West Chicago Park District celebrates Arbor Day from 9:00 a.m. to noon, Saturday, April 27, 2013 at Reed- Keppler Park, National and Fremont streets. Superintendent of Parks Jesse Felix discusses recovery planting from the July 1, 2012 storm and the America in Bloom program, plus answers questions about trees and gives away tree liners as part of the Million Trees Project sponsored by Living Land & Waters. “Most of the 100 liners are oak,” said Felix. Teams from Morton Arboretum and volunteers from America in Bloom join the Park District in tagging trees. The tags are designed to showcase the beauty and environmental benefits of trees.


              Coffee with the Mayor is from 9:00 a.m.to noon Saturday, April 27, 2013 at City Hall, 475 Main Street.


              First United Methodist Church of West Chicago, 643 East Washington Street, holds a Creation Care Service at 10:00 a.m. Sunday, April 28, 2013. The guest speaker is Tim Good, a certified lay speaker from Manhattan United Methodist Church.


              As part of its WeGo for Wellness series, the West Chicago Public Library District presents the program, “Nutritious Noshes,” at 6:30 p.m. Thursday, May 2, 2013 in the meeting room, 118 West Washington Street. Under the tutelage of Chef Michael Maddox, attendees learn how to make quick and tasty treats for the whole family to enjoy. He is the former owner/chef of Le Titi de Paris in Arlington Heights.


              “Prestissimo, Presiosismo” is the exhibit for the month of May at Gallery 200, 200 Main Street. The collection of paintings by Lewis Achenbach consists of various musicians as seen and heard in intimate clubs throughout Chicago. He captures live jazz performances in a unique style of art, which he calls “documentary painting.” During the artist’s reception from 6:00 to 9:00 p.m. Friday, May 3, 2013, Achenbach offers the opportunity for attendees to witness a live painting of the entertainers. The musicians are Kelsey Schmidt and Rachel Schuldt and vocalist Kate Reeder. Light refreshments are served.


             The West Chicago City Museum, 132 Main Street, hosts “Late Night at the Museum” during the hours of the artist’s reception.


              The DuPage Veterans Foundation hosts the Second Annual Honor Flight fundraiser to honor World War II and Korean War veterans and raise funds for one flight for WWII veterans to fly to Washington D.C. It takes place from 11:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. Saturday, May 4, 2013 in the Calamos Hanger at DuPage Airport, 2700 International Drive. The event includes lunch, era music, historic war vehicles and airplanes, and a silent auction. The price is $30 in advance, $40 at the door and $20 for children under 12. All WWII and Korean War veterans and active duty military are free.  To order tickets or make a donation by mail, make the check payable to DuPage Veterans Foundation, and mail to the foundation, P.O. Box 299, Wheaton, IL 60187. If ordering tickets, indicate how many and include your address. To order online, visit the website http://dupageveteransfoundation.org. For information, call (630) 614-4533 or (630) 668-2050, or email info@dupageveteransfoundation.org. The fundraiser is dedicated in memory of West Chicago Mike Kwasman, who was a driving force in organizing the fundraiser until his death a year ago.


              The ninth annual We-Go Run, sponsored by the Parent-Teacher Organizations of West Chicago, begins at 8:00 a.m. Sunday, May 5, 2013 at Community High School District 94 Memorial Field, George and Wood streets. The race includes a 5K run/walk, a 10K run, a one-mile run for youths from ages six through 14 and a 10-yard Kid’s Dash for children age 8 and under. Registrations fees for the 5K and 10K are $21 in advance and$26 on race day. The fee for the one-mile run is $1 for District 33 students, $4 for all other youth and $8 on race day. There is no charge for the Kid’s dash, but pre-registration is required.


              The top overall female and male runners and the top three finishers in each age group receive an award.  Dash participants receive ribbons and goodie bags.


              Registration forms are available at the district schools, the district office at 312 East Forest Avenue and online at the district website www.wego33.org, click on WeGo Run.


              The West Chicago Historical Society Kruse House Museum, 527 Main Street, opens for the 2013 summer tour season.  Hours are from 11:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. Saturdays, beginning May 4, and ending September 28. The special exhibit is “Reigning Cats and Dogs…and Bunnies Too.”  Not only is it a pun on words, but also demonstrates how pets sometimes rule the lives of their owners. Items on display include figurines art, clothing, dishes and books. Some are from the Kruse House collection and others are on loan from persons in the community. For further information, call Joan Conkright at (630) 231-2321.


              To celebrate Cinco de Mayo, Shining Light hosts a Crazy and Cosmic Bowling event from 1:00 to 5:00 p.m. Sunday, May 5, 2013 at Bowling Greens Sports Center, 243 West Roosevelt Road. Festive food choices include chips and salsa, enchiladas, black bean salad, quesadillas, horchata and fajitas. There also is a silent auction. The ticket price is $25 a person, $45 for a couple and $90 for a foursome. To order tickets, email Debbie Barnes at Debbie@shininglightnfp.org.


              The West Chicago Park District in cooperation with American Legion Post 300 and the Legion Auxiliary host the annual 80 and Over Community Celebration from 2:00 to 4:00 p.m. Sunday, May 5, 2013 at the Legion Post, 123 Main Street. They also are honoring Terry Klingberg for his 24 years of service to the district as the senior citizen transportation service offered through an intergovernmental agreement between the Park District and Winfield Township. He will remain the driver, but will be an employee of the township, which assumes the administration of the service starting May 1, 2013.


              West Chicago’s 10th annual Citywide Collection takes place on regularly scheduled garbage pick-up days, beginning Monday, May 6, and ending Friday, May 10, 2013. Using eight “refuse” sticker, residents can dispose of an unlimited amount of acceptable items. For a list of acceptable items, call Michelle Baldino at (630) 293-2255 or visit the City’s website at www.westchicago.org, under Public Works.


              The drama club at Community High School District 94 presents the musical comedy “A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum,” with lyrics and music by Stephen Sondheim and book by Burt Shevelove and Larry Gelbert. Performances are at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Friday and Saturday, May 9, 10 and 11, 2013 in Weyrauch Auditorium, 326 Joliet Street.


             Set in ancient Rome, hilarity and chaos rule as Preudolus, a slave, tries to obtain his freedom. Full of slamming doors, mistaken identities and zany antics, this sidesplitting evening of “comedy tonight” complements the season theme of Any time, Any Place.


              The ticket price is $8 for adults and $5 for students. Tickets may be purchased online at www.wegotheater.com or at the door.


              The outcome of the continuance of the public hearing before the West Chicago Historic Preservation Commission of Tuesday, April 16, 2013 is another continuance to Tuesday, June 4, 2013. The purpose is for the commission to consider the City of West Chicago’s appeal of the Denial of Certificate of Appropriateness #12-20 for the demolition of the Wiant house, 151 West Washington Street. The 1869 Second Empire style home is in the Turner Junction Historic District.


              West Chicago resident Jeff Stibal, who is against the demolition, asked the commission for the continuance in order to gather more information and validation from preservation experts and the feasibility of raising funds, plus reissuing the Request for Development.  City Administrator Michael Guttmann said the City had no objection to the continuance of the hearing. However, the City did not agree to the RFD request. “The City has one remaining interested party who responded to the re-issuance of the RFQ in a timely manner. It would be inappropriate and call into question the integrity of the process to solicit additional interest until either the City Council acts upon this RFQ response or the respondent withdraws.”


              Sincere sympathy is expressed to the family of David W. Geick, who at the age of 76 passed away Monday, April15, 2013.


              Deepest sympathy is extended to the family of Elizabeth “Betty” M. Sandon, who at the age of 92 recently passed away.


              Sincere sympathy is expressed to the family of Margaret E. Lukitsh, who at the age of 90 passed away Monday, April 15, 2013.


              Community High School District 94 students are the regional champions in the Illinois Personal Finance Challenge, qualifying them for state finals. In the regional competition, 710 students competed online in teams.


                Members of the winning team are Grant Hosticka, Doug Murphy, Nicole VanDoren and Matt Wenz. Other students competing were Amanda Gosbeth, Austin Petersen, Jason Umphrey, and Nick Wilson. Economics teacher Candace Fikis is the coach. This is the first time CHS has won the regionals, which is the hardest region in the state. “This is a tremendous accomplishment by our students,” said Fikis.


              The Illinois Personal Finance Challenge is a program of Econ Illinois, the premier provider of economics and personal support in K-12 schools in Illinois. It recognizes students who demonstrate high levels of comprehension and application of personal finance concepts and skills, and rewards teachers for outstanding practices in teaching personal finance courses. These classes include business, consumer economics, economics, family and consumer science, career and technical education, personal finance and entrepreneurship.


              At the Monday, April 15, 2013 meeting, there were proclamations to recognize and honor the four aldermen leaving the council. Nan Connelly, Ward 6, served for 10 years. Nick Dzierzanowski, Ward 7, served 10 years. Ron Monroe, Ward 2, served eight years. Russ Radkiewicz, Ward 3, served eight years.


              Council approved the purchase of four 2014 Chevrolet Caprice Police Pursuit vehicles for a cost not to exceed $112,880.


              Council also approved a $25 fee increase per grave excavation and interment of ashes. No increases are proposed for the sale of graves and/or memorial foundations. This is the first increase in The Cemetery Management, Inc. contract since 2009.


              Council approved a new services agreement with Cemetery Management, Inc., John B. Reynolds, as the cemetery sexton in the Glen Oak and Oakwood cemeteries. As an independent contractor, he has been the sexton since May 7, 1990.


              Also the council approved a contract with EnCAP, Inc. of Sycamore for an amount not to exceed $36,396.50 for professional services related to the 2013 Water Treatment Plant Native Landscape Improvement Project. According to the item summary, City staff and DuPage County’s Economic Development & Planning staff have been working together for the last several years to develop a modified native landscape plan acceptable to both “that would meet the original goal of the stormwater permit, while maintaining a more aesthetically pleasing landscape appearance with a mixture of native landscaping and credit for existing on-site traditional landscape improvements.”


              City Council approved an agreement with the State of Illinois, acting by and through the Illinois Department of Transportation, to upgrade traffic signals on State Highways with Light-Emitting-Diode Modules and authorizing the City to cost share in the program for its proportionate share of approach leg transportation. Within the corporate limits of the City, there are nine proposed intersections. State funds are used for 90 percent of the traffic signal upgrade costs with the remaining 10 percent split based on the proportionate share of approach leg jurisdiction. Battery backup is included in the program. This allows the traffic signal to operate during short-term power outages. The anticipated construction completion date is late 2013.


              Former residents Jane and Keith Golchert were named the Senior King and Queen for the 63rd Annual Lake of the Ozarks Dogwood Festival, held from Thursday, April 18 through Saturday, April 20, 2013.


              The World Languages Division at Community High School District 94 inducted students into the French, German and Spanish National Honor Societies Wednesday, April 17, 2013. Membership in these Honor Societies represents outstanding achievement in at least two years of study of a foreign language, academic excellence in all other classes and the intent to continue the study of a foreign language.


              The newest members of the Societe Honoraire de Francaise are María Aguilar, Evelyn Almonte, Roberto Bejarano, Haley Carney, Cassandra Ciardullo, Cassandra Delaurie, Andres Del Rio, Angelica Gallegos, Brittany González, Jacqueline Luna, Ana Muñoz, Rogelio Orizaba, Benjamin Skipor, Karla Soto, Sarahay Terrazas, Pedro Tresgallo, Alexis Vázquez, Noah Watkins, Ericka Lima and Karen Rangel.


              The ten new members of Delta Epsilon Phi, the German National Honor Society, are Ashlee Augustyn, Mark Blackman, Maricé Guerra, Kiera MacPherson, Teresa Mendoza, Joe Skipor, Scott Wiest, Valarie Schroeder, Hannah Spriggs and Jessica Wiacek.


              Inducted into la Sociedad Honoraría Hispanica were Emily Bedard, Michele Conforti, Amy Goldsmith, Courtney Harding, Elizabeth Mastroianni, Taylor McComb, Hanna Netisingha, Nicholas Wils, Alyssa Bossle, Madelon Castelvecchi, Alyssa Colon, Ana Cortez, Amy Dinh, Michelle Franch, Mae Elizabeth Gimre, Anica Hosticka, Robert Graal, Alissa Johnsen,  Marianne Kiel, David Kordik, Colin Lelito, Carolyn Meissner, Edith Muñoz, Vishakha Patel, Raj Parikh, Tatiana Rich, Angel Santana, Rachel Skipor, Andrew Steininger, Sarahay Terrazas, Natalie Tucker, Jacob Urban, Jenna Foreman, Jacob Gillespie, Brandon Kent, John Kulikowski and Stephanie M. Tipton.


              Teachers in the World Languages Division are Division Head Janelle Stefancic, Spanish teachers are Susan Junkroski, Sarah Gill, Brittany Blanchard, Beth Govertsen, and Ericka Richardson, French teachers are Lindsey Evans and Katie Schoen, and German teacher Nora Wessels.


              The guest speaker was Tom Barnes, a 2010 CHS graduate and Congress-Bundestag Exchange Program student.  He discussed how the study of the German Language enriches his life.


              CHS World Languages philosophy emphasizes language use and development of all modalities to increase students’ second language ability and exposure. Teachers use interactive teaching strategies to provide authentic writing and listening experiences approximating the target language fluency.



My email address is merleburl@earthlink.net.

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