It is officially Spring. The beginning of this season does not automatically mean warm weather. In fact, the weather is quite inconsistent. The temperatures fluctuate. This is a frustrating time for gardeners, who are anxious to get their hands in the soil. Yet, it is too early to remove the leaves and mulch, which are giving some protection to the perennial plants. Some plants can take the sudden dip in temperature and bloom with their flowers in late spring or summer. Others cannot, they either die or produce only leaves. Then with the recent light snows, rain and hail, the soil is too wet to walk upon. Our body weight can kill the roots of some sensitive plants.
Also the flowering shrubs and bushes are confused with the mild winter and warm temperatures in February. Lilacs have buds and some forsythia are already booming. The professionals are saying some of the early flowering shrubs and trees may only have 20 percent bloom. All we can do is “wait and see.”
The professionals say this is a good time to study your gardens, read various seed and plant catalogs and dream of the perfect garden. This sounds like the perfect plan.
AROUND AND ABOUT
Early voting for the Consolidated Election Tuesday, April 4, 2017 is now available through Monday April 3, 2017. There are 12 locations. The one closest to West Chicago is the DuPage County Election Commission in the Cafe of Building 5 at the DuPage County Fairgrounds, 2015 Manchester Road in Wheaton. Hours are from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday, 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Saturday and from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Sunday. For further information, call (630) 407-5600 or visit the website www.dupageco.org/election.
The ballots include elected officials for City of West Chicago, Benjamin School District 25, West Chicago Elementary School District 33, Community High School District 94, St. Charles Community Unit School District 33, College of DuPage, West Chicago park District, West Chicago Public Library District and Winfield Township. There also are two referendum questions, one for District 94 and one for District 25.
West Chicago Garden Club meeting is Thursday, March 23, 2017 at Faith Community Church, 910 Main Street. Social time is at 6:45 p.m., short business meeting at 7:00 p.m. and the program, “Members present,” at 7:15 p.m. Program chairman Billie Childress said it is a surprise/mystery program. Persons attending receive a blooming potted plant.
Kiwanis International is working to start a Kiwanis Club in West Chicago. A one-hour informational meeting takes place at noon, Friday, March 24, 2017 at Republic Bank, 101 Main Street. A light lunch is served. Kiwanis, a global organization, is home to the largest youth services programs in the world. Its local clubs’ programs empower elementary school students, tweens and teens to make an impact through service and leadership.
Knights of Columbus Father Gaffney 1555, St. Mary’s parish, host a Fish Fry from 5:00 to 7:45 p.m. Friday, March 24 and March 31, 2017 in St. Francis Hall, 140 North Oakwood Avenue. The suggested donation is $8, $6 for senior citizens age 60 and over and $5 for children age 12 and under.
Coffee with the Mayor is from 9:00 a.m. to noon Saturday, March 26, 2017 at City Hall, 475 Main Street.
Catholic Daughters of Americas Court 432, St. Mary’s parish, hosts its annual Spring Luncheon from 11:00 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Saturday, March 25, 2017 at the ARC Center in Reed-Keppler Park, 201 West National Street. On the menu are salads, rolls, dessert, coffee and lemonade. There also are gift basket raffles and 50/50 raffle. The ticket price is $8 for adults and $6 for children under the age of 10. For tickets, call Sylvia Mosier at (630) 231-0603.
The proceeds benefit various charities to which CAD contributes and other in-kind and monetary donations. These include layettes for Catholic Charities, sponsoring a Mission child, helping with funding for Habitat and supporting the ST. Vincent De Paul Society conference. Donations include Neighborhood Food Pantries location in West Chicago, religious education classes at St. Mary’s and families in need at Christmas.
As part of the West Chicago Sister Cities exchange program, 21 students from West Chicago Community High School are visiting Taufkirchen (Vils), Germany during spring break. Chaperones are Becky Hall, president of Sister Cities, and Dave Sayner, humanities teacher at WCCHS. The group leaves Saturday, March 25, and arrives in Taufkirchen Sunday, March 26. For one week, each student lives in a German home. The Partnerschaftsverein, the equivalent group to West Chicago Sister Cities, has planned an exciting itinerary, including several days at school, trips to Munich and other neighboring towns, plus a trip to Neuschwanstein Castle. The official welcome is Monday evening Monday, March 27, 2017 at the town hall.
Taufkirchen, located 35 miles northeast of Munich of the river Vils, is a town of more than 9,600 and rich in Bavarian traditions. Culture and education play an important role in the lives of its citizens who are proud of their town’s history.
The Friends of the West Chicago City Museum and West Chicago Historical Society host their annual Tea Fundraiser at 1:00 p.m. Sunday, March 26, 2017 in American Legion Post 300, 123 Main Street. The ticket price is $20 and includes a tea luncheon and entertainment. Tickets are available at the City Museum, 132 Main Street or call (630) 231-3376 or email email@example.com.
The program is “Hamilton’s Women: Meet the Real Schuyler Sisters Who Captivated Alexander Hamilton,” presented by Leslie Goddard. She gives a portrayal of the three Schuyler sisters who captivated Alexander Hamilton, one of the founding fathers of the United States. They are his wife, Elizabeth Schuyler Hamilton, her sister, the charming, witty Angelica Schuyler Church, and her other sister, high-spirited Peggy Schuyler Van Rensselaer.
Goddard makes history come alive in a fun, inspiring and educational way through her presentations of lectures and performances of first-person programs. She holds a PhD specializing in American studies and U.S. history, as well as a master’s degree in theater and in museum studies. In addition to performing at schools, museums, libraries, businesses and conferences, she presented programs an Illinois Humanities Council sites, Questers International, WBEZ-Chicago Amplified and the Victorian Society in America. (www.merleburl.com)
Dance with Janet, a line dancing class, is at 6:00 p.m. Tuesday, March 28, 2017 at American Legion Post 300, 123 Main Street. The charge is $7 per person. The teacher is Janet Kruse, former instructor at Cadillac Ranch. Sounds like a fun time to get some healthy exercise.
“Introduction to Genealogy” is the West Chicago Public Library District program at 6:30 p.m. Wednesday, March 29, 2017 in the program room, 118 West Washington Street. Topics covered include the basics of starting a genealogy project, and the best sources for research both on line and in real life. Reservations are required and may be made by calling adult services department at (630) 231-1552, extension 4.
Wayne/Winfield Area Youth/Family Services offers hour-long computer classes for senior citizens at
Wayne Township, 27W031 North Avenue. Not only do seniors learn basic skills, but also have the opportunity to socialize. The fee is $2. Reservations are required and may be made by calling (630) 231-7166.
“Texting on Smart Phones” class is at 2:00 p.m. Friday, March 31, 2017. For classes that involve a technology device, persons need to bring their personal items with them.
An evening of fun for all ages takes place from 5:00 to 8:00 p.m. Friday March 31, 2017 at Gallery 200, 103 West Washington Street. Family Art Night highlights “Snow City” Arts Exhibit Open House, the closing reception for artwork of students in West Chicago Elementary School District 33 on display in the “Art Is the Heart” exhibit and NetWorking Art Performance project by Anni Holm.
Local Music Night features three performances. The Leman Middle School String Ensemble plays at 5:30 p.m., Mike Fenton performs at 6:45 p.m. and Roger Kotecki entertains at 7:30 p.m.
West Chicago City Museum, 132 Main Street, hosts “Drawing on History” at Late Night at the Museum. The drop-in drawing session is open to all ages. This involves guests drawing an artifact on display from the Museum’s collection. Staff gives a brief local history on the artifact. All drawing supplies are provided.
Approximately 45 persons attended the final Indoor Walk of the season, hosted by Healthy West Chicago and Team Pineda. Sponsors were CNM Care, WeGo Run 33, CH2M, Farmers Insurance-Roberto Barrera Agency and St. Andrew Lutheran Church. The first outdoor 5K Walk is at 9:00 a.m. Saturday, April 1, 2017 at Currier School, 800 Gary’s Mill Road. (www.merleburl.com)
Wheaton League of Women Voters hosts the program, “Corruption in Illinois,” at 6:30 p.m. Wednesday, April 5, 2017 at Prairie Path Books, 302 East Wesley in Wheaton. The speaker is Dick Simpson, political scientist and commentator. He is a frequent contributor to media coverage of city and state politic, plus an authority on political corruption as well as elections, the voting patterns of legislators, local government, budgeting and neighborhood empowerment. There is no charge, but reservations are preferred as seating is limited. To make a reservation, email firstname.lastname@example.org. Also autographed copies of his book, “Corrupt Illinois,” will be for sale.
Wheaton League of Women Voters includes West Chicago, Warrenville, Winfield, Wheaton and Carol Stream. The League of Women Voters is a non-partisan organization that does not support or oppose any political party or candidate, but whose purpose is to promote political responsibility through informed and active participation of citizens in government.
Sincere sympathy is extended to the family of Pamela Ann Metcalf, who at the age of 57 passed away Thursday, March 16, 2017.
Deepest sympathy is expressed to the family of Edward Chuck Schuett, who at the age of 97 passed away Thursday, March 15, 2017.
More than 148 persons attended the Winfield Township Open HHHhhouse Saturday, March 11, 2017. Township officials present were Supervisor Dona Smith, Clerk Cliff Brown, Assessor Mark Malay, Road Commissioner John Dusza, Trustees Jerry Ruzicka and Don Voelz. Items collected were 25 cans of food and three packages of hot dog buns, which were donated to Neighborhood Food Pantry in West Chicago; two tattered and faded flags, which were donated to American Legion Post 300; four cell phones, which were donated to the DuPage County Sheriff’s office; and 61 pairs of eyeglasses, which were donated to West Chicago Lions Club. (www.merleburl.com)
The picture of the challenge quilt made by West Chicago resident Kathy Steere is in the April/May 2017 issue of Quilting Arts Magazine. The 10-inch by eight-inch quilt, (heart) Mom appears on page 55. (www.merleburl.com)
Tracy Le, a senior at West Chicago Community High School, is the Student of the Month for February. The selection was based upon her academic and extracurricular achievements.
Le has been on the honor roll most of the four years and currently is taking AP Calculus.
Currently she is captain of the varsity tennis team and is serving as class vice president on the Student Council. She was a teen leader in the Snowball program, is a member of the Interact Club Health Occupation Students of America, a new club at the high school. Outside of school, she volunteers at her church.
Upon graduation, Le plans to attend Marquette University in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, studying Biomedical Sciences to become a physician’s assistant. (www.merleburl.com)
Brian McDonald, a 2011 graduate of Wheaton Academy, appeared on Late Late Show with James Corden Tuesday, March 14, 2017. His band Judah and the Lion played “Take It All Back.” The band has been opening for Grammy Award winners.
Former West Chicago Matthew Doll was featured in the Tuesday, March 14, 2017 issue of the “Daily Herald.” He is the visual effects artist for the new live-action production of Disney’s “Beauty and the Beast.” Other career highlights include “Iron Man,” “Captain America: The Winter Soldier,“ “Paranormal Activity 4”, “The Amazing Spider Man” and “Transformer 4.” He is a 2001 graduate of West Chicago Community High School. His parents are Marie and Mark Doll.
Tai Bibbs, a senior at West Chicago Community High School, was named to the Associated Press/Illinois High School Association All-Stat Boys Basketball Team.
Reverend John Balluff, pastor of St. Mary’s parish announced Bishop Robert Daniel Conlan of the Joliet Diocese asked him to serve as Vicar of Clergy, starting in June 2018. Reverend David Lawrence, pastor of St. Dominic’s parish in Bolingbrook, will succeed him. Father Lawrence will be assigned as vicar to St. Mary’s in June 2017.
The Math Team from West Chicago Community High School performed well at the District 9 Regional Team Meet. Not only receiving awards, but eight members also advanced to State Competition to be held in May 2017 at University of Illinois Champaign/Urbana. Taking third place in Individual Algebra 1 and a state qualifier was Nathan Shwatal. Algebra 1 team members Oscar Almonte, Maahum Hamayat, Kurt Leano, Annie Navadomskis, Austin Shwatal and Nathan Shwatal won second place. Oscar Almonte, Alyssa Guttman, Jose Hinojoza, Kurt Leano, Annie Navadomskis, Austin Shwatal, Nathan Shwatal, and Sarah Solver, members of the Freshman-Sophomore eight-person team and state qualifiers, took first place. Winning first place in the Freshman-Sophomore two person team category and state qualifiers were Austin Shwatal and Nathan Shwatal.
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