Due to an illness in the family, Emma Rios, owner of Casa Rios Bridal Boutique at 204 Main Street, recently closed the doors to the business. With the opening of the business on Main Street in 1991, it was one of the oldest established businesses with original ownership in the historic downtown district. The business celebrated its 35th anniversary in 2015. Her first store was on West Washington Street, now the site of the West Chicago Public Library. The other oldest established business in the district is West Chicago Printing Company.
Originally, she sewed the dresses, often not using a pattern, but just following a description from customers. As it became more cost effective to sell pre-made garments, she stopped sewing the dresses, but still did alterations. Her line of clothing expanded from only bridal gowns to Quinceañera dresses, christening outfits, bridesmaids dresses, flower girl dresses, ring bearer outfits and accessories for the special events. As the site was once the location of Conley’s Drugs, Rios used the cubby holes for the display of the accessories, plus handmade booties and caps. The business also provided tuxedo rentals for wedding, proms and other special occasions. Other rental items included chair covers, punch bowls and such for receptions and parties.
Rios also was involved in community activities for more than 25 years, including downtown promotional events, a trustee for the West Chicago Public Library District and the founding of the United Latin-American of West Chicago, which at that time helped and clothed Hispanics, who were in need. Through Centro Hispano she continues to help those in need and refers them to the proper agencies.
Rios and her family moved to West Chicago in 1959. Her husband had a job with the former Lindsay Light & Chemical Company. Then he was employed by General Mills until retirement.
Already I miss the store window filled with the mannequins dressed in finery, but, most of all, I miss Emma with her smile and friendly greeting. (The West Chicago City Museum provided some of the historical information.)
AROUND AND ABOUT
West Chicago City Museum continues its Histiography program, a non-fiction book reading group. The discussion group meets at noon, Thursday, July 20, 2017 at the museum, 132 Main Street. Persons who have not read the book are welcome to attend. Guests can bring a sack lunch; dessert and drinks are provided. Call the museum at (630) 231-3376 for further information.
The book under discussion is “Hidden Figures: The American Dream and the Untold Story of the Black Women Mathematicians Who Helped with the Space Race” by Margot Lee Shetterly. The author weaves individual stories, aeronautical study, and historical facts into a fascinating account of a time of great change in the United States. It is an account of the previously unheralded, but pivotal contributions of NASA’s African-American women mathematicians to America’s space program.
“Reach for the Stars: A Family Astronomy Program” is at 7:00 p.m. Thursday, July 20, 2017 in the meeting room at the West Chicago Public Library District, 118 West Washington Street. Attendees learn to use a sky viewing app to identify different celestial entities and then use a telescope to find them.
The movie at the Turtle Splash Water Park Flick & Float event is “The Little Mermaid” Friday, July 21, 2017. It starts at 8:30 p.m. Participants must supply their own floats. Pre-registration is required. There is no charge for Splash Pass holders. The charge is $5 for residents and $7 for non-residents.
John & Tony’s Restaurant, 27W371 North Avenue, hosts an all-day fundraiser for Leukemia Research Foundation, on behalf of Lefty, Saturday, July 22, 2017. The Summer Bar-B-Q Buffet is from 11:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. On the menu is smoked beef, pulled pork, corn on the cob, pasta salad, fruit bowl and pastries. The charge is $10.95 and $6.95 for children. Twenty percent of the food sales goes to the foundation. This also include foods and drinks from the menu. There are raffle tickets for $10 or 12 for $100. List of prizes on www.johnandtonys.com, musical entertainment includes Deja Blu, Trio Leo and DJ Brian Bender. For further information, call (630) 520-0593.
Galley 200 artist Marge Hall is one of the exhibitors in the Geneva Arts Fair. It takes place from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, July 22 and 23, 2017 at 100 South Third Street.
Maggie Capettini, Gallery 200 member and West Chicago City Museum Education Coordinator, is one of the 25 artists participating in the 13th Annual Domaine Berrien Cellars Art, Wine, Music Festival. It takes place from 11:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. Saturday, July 22, 2017 at the winery, 398 East Lemon Creek Road in Berrien Springs, Michigan.
St. Michael’s United Church of Christ, 400 West Washington Street, has a Hymn Sing at its 9:30 a.m. Sunday, July 23, 2017. Reverend Sue Ebersold, pastor of the church, is on vacation.
First United Methodist Church of West Chicago holds its 10:00 a.m. Sunday, July 23, 2017 worship service in the North Pavilion at Reed-Keppler Park. A potluck lunch follows the service.
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.
“Creating a Free Email Account & Basics” class is at 1:00 p.m. Monday, July 24, 2017. For classes that involve a technology device, persons need to bring their personal items with them.
The West Chicago Public Affairs Committee meeting is at 6:00 p.m. Monday, July 24, 2017 at City Hall, 475 Main Street.
As part of its Business Round Table, the West Chicago Public Library District holds Score: General Business Discussion Round Table at 6:30 p.m. Wednesday, July 26, 2017 in the meeting room, 118 West Washington Street. Score Mentor George Safford, a West Chicago resident, is the moderator. It is geared for those starting a new business or owners of existing small businesses. To make a reservation, call the adult services department at (630) 231-1552, extension 4.
The City of West Chicago sponsors a 30-minute fireworks display at approximately 9:00 p.m. Wednesday, July 26, 2017 at Baseball Field 6 in Reed-Keppler Park. The event follows the summer concert program, Hey Cowboy, a country cover band, from 7:00 to 8:30 p.m. The band plays the classics, plus the current songs. The City and West Chicago Park District sponsor the programs in the concert series. (www.merleburl.com)
A softball game between the West Chicago Fire Protection District and West Chicago Police Department and pig roast to benefit Special Olympics takes place Sunday, July 30, 2017. West Chicago Fraternal Order of Police Lodge 85 and West Chicago Professional Firefighters IAFF Local 3970 are the organizers of the event. The game is at 1:00 p.m. at Reed-Keppler Park, followed by the pig roast at Hawthorne’s Backyard Bar and Grill, 1200 West Hawthorne Lane. In addition to a 50/50 raffle, there are raffle tickets for a 2017 Harley Davidson and a four-wheel all-terrain vehicle, plus a silent auction. The cost is $10. For further information, call (630) 918-6326.
The West Chicago Public Library District holds two two-hour computer classes in study room 3, 118 West Washington Street. To make reservations, call the adult services department at (630) 231-1552, extension 4.
Microsoft Word is at 2:00 p.m. Tuesday, August 1. Persons learn the basics of formatting text and documents, changing fonts, cut/copy and paste, using Spell Check and MS word terminology. Attendees must have basic computer skills.
Apple Devices for Beginners is at 2:00 p.m. Wednesday, August 2. Persons learn the basics of using their iPhone or iPad.
The 28th annual planned West Chicago Night Out Against Crime is from 6:00 to 8:00 p.m. Tuesday, August 1, 2017 at West Chicago Police Department, 325 Spencer Street. The location changed to coincide it with an Open House. The event includes many activities such as, law enforcement displays, various information booths and raffles. Colonial Ice Cream is donating ice cream and Jel Sert company is donating Mondo fruit drink.
Participating, to date, are Community High School District 94, DuComm dispatch, Eagle Academy of Martial Arts, Educare of West Chicago, Illinois Secretary of State Police, State Farm Insurance – Dan Jimenez, West Chicago Police Department, West Chicago Police Department Honor Guard, City of West Chicago, West Chicago Library and West Chicago Police Social Services.
Also attending are Mayor Ruben Pineda, Ward 1 Alderman Jim Beifuss, Ward 4 Alderman Melissa Birch-Ferguson, Ward 2 Alderman Heather Brown, Ward 4 Alderman Sandy Dimas, Ward 3 Alderman Mike Ferguson, Ward 7 Alderman Bonnie Gagliardi, Ward 6 Alderman George Garcia and Ward 3 Alderman Al Hallett.
National Night Out is designed to heighten crime and drug prevention, generate support and participation in local anti-crime efforts and to strengthen neighborhood spirit and police-community relations. More than 15,000 communities participate.
The 1860s Chicago Burlington Quincy Railroad Depot, 134 Turner Court, is open from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. Saturday through August 26, 2017.
In its 11th year of offering summer camp, Wayne/Winfield Area Youth/Family Services incorporated career exploration programming this year. The program teaches youths job readiness skills, such as communication, teamwork, problem solving and critical thinking. The purpose is to increase long term self-sufficiency. A grant from the DuPage Foundation helps fund field trips to local colleges and businesses.
Thus far, campers visited College of DuPage to visit Welding and HVAC classrooms, Fona International to learn about the food and flavor science industry, Carol Stream fire department and Bartlett Library. Upcoming field trips include a tour of We Grow Greenhouse and Gardens and Kline Creek Farm, plus a visit to the Culinary Arts department at College of DuPage, Benedictine University and the Lizzadro Museum of Lapidary Art. Persons interested in speaking to the campers should contact Allison Koweiski at (630) 231-7166.
Guest speakers allow campers the opportunity to ask questions about possible careers in the future. To date, speakers include a police officer, an accountant, a nurse, a paralegal, a government official, an insurance agent, a banker, a teacher and a dog trainer.
There still are openings at summer camp. To apply or for further information, call WAYS. The camp receives support in part from a DuPage County Human Services grant. It allows for an additional 12 low-income youth to receive sliding scale scholarships for camp. (www.merleburl.com)
The City Museum, 132 Main Street, and West Chicago Historical Society Kruse House Museum, 527 Main Street, are participants in the “Passport to Adventure” program, which runs through Monday, September 4, 2017. The program is for children ages 4 through 12, who receive stamps at the participating locations, which includes more than 50 museums and nature centers in DuPage and Kane counties. Passports are available at both museums and the West Chicago Public Library District, 118 West Washington Street.
The current exhibits at the City Museum are “Made in West Chicago” and “Grains of Change.” Museum hours are from 10:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. Thursday and from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. Friday and Saturday. The telephone number is (630) 231-3376.
The summer exhibit at the KHM is “The Cookie Caper.” The KHM hours are from 11:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. Saturday. For further information, call Donna Orlandini at (630) 231-2671 or Joan Conkright at (630) 231-2329.
Wayne/Winfield Area Youth Family Services offers Adult Anger Management classes. Class topics include defining anger, relaxation, name your triggers, errors in thinking, problem solving, personal coping strategies, creating coping thoughts, assertive training, family systems and dealing with anger in others. Upon the end of attending the 10-session series, clients receive a Certificate of Completion. The classes meet from 8:00 to 9:00 p.m. Wednesdays and from 9:00 to 10:00 a.m. Fridays. Classes in Spanish are from 8:00 to 9:00 a.m. Saturdays. All classes are held in the Wayne Township building, 27W031 North Avenue. For further information, call WAYS at (630) 231-7166.
Tina Koral, founder and current executive director of GardenWorks Project, is stepping down from her position this fall and will join the Board of Directors. Since the organization started in 2012, 214 families have received home vegetable gardens. Eighty-two were built this spring. The GardenWorks Project Resource Center is located in the Gallery 200 building at 103 West Washington Street. The responsibilities and qualifications for the executive director position are online at gardenworksproject.org/leadership.
The GardenWorks Project is a registered 501c3 non-profit, volunteer-led organization to serve the DuPage County area. Its mission is to empower, educate, and promote organic suburban agriculture to improve the wellbeing of the community, the environment, and families facing food insecurity.
Deepest sympathy is expressed to the family of Nathan A. Birch, who at the age of 33 passed away Monday, July 19, 2017.
A photograph by West Chicago resident Tom Knutson was featured in the Tuesday, July 11, 2017 issue of the Daily Herald in the Photo Finish photography contest in the Neighbor section. It was an action picture of his grandson playing soccer.
Wheaton Academy Head of School Gene Frost recently announced some administrative leadership changes for the 2017-18 school year. This is the beginning of building a strong team for the next generation of leadership at the academy, with Dr. Frost using the next three years to transition current school leader to take over more of the day-to-day responsibilities. Principal Steve Brunt assumes the position of associate head of the school. Assistant principal Kori Hockett becomes principal, heading up a three-person team. They are Jeff Brooke, vice principal for campus life; Brad Thornton, vice principal for instruction; and Brenda Vishanoff, vice principal for student services and learning.
Friends of West Chicago Parks Foundation Annual Golf Outing, Friday, June 23, 2017 was a success. More than $8,000 was raised to benefit the Foundation Scholarship Program, which provides recreational opportunities to low-income qualifying families in the West Chicago Park District community.
Three baseball and softball tournaments, hosted by the West Chicago Park District, were held three weekends in June. One hundred ninety-six teams from four states participated.
Margaret Bucholz, an artist member of Gallery 200, was featured in the July Issue of “Glancer” Magazine, which covers the western suburbs. The cover story in the issue was Eclectic Faces, which highlighted five individuals from talented musicians, entertaining artists, unique craftsmen and dancing instructor.
Bucholz lived in Japan from birth until she was nine years old. She loved drawing and dreamed of becoming an artist. When she lived in Hawaii, she started sewing her own clothes. Bucholz earned a Bachelors in Fine Arts in Drawing and Painting from the University of Hawaii. While she was a full time employee for the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, Bucholz spent her vacations studying art, she studied under a variety of artists, including Jan Hart and Sterling Edwards. Now retired, she teaches art classes at the DuPage Art League in Wheaton.
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