The West Chicago Police Department continues to raise money for Special Olympics Illinois through Law Enforcement Torch Run for Special Olympics Coffee for Champions and the coffee/donut delivery. Both of these fundraisers raised more than $10,000 in donations. During the hours of 5:00 a.m. to noon Friday, August 20, 2021, West Chicago police officers were at one of the four Dunkin’ Donut locations in West Chicago, participating in Coffee for Champion, formerly called Cop On a Roof, by collecting donations and talking about Special Olympics Illinois.
The coffee/donut delivery involved Police Chief Colin Perry and Community Relations Officer Robyn Nielsen delivering two dozen doughnuts and coffee to businesses, organizations or large groups who donated $100 or more to Special Olympics Illinois. The Dunkin Donuts located at 330 South Neltnor Boulevard made the coffee and doughnuts for the deliveries. Giving donations were A.R.M. & Associates, Action Plumbing, Airhart Construction Corporation, American Standard Circuits, AT&T at the Streamwood location, B & B Networks, Barco Stamping, Boost Auto Parts, Chicago Industrial Fasteners, Chihuahua Tire Shop, CTC Machine Shop, Daniel and Associates Real Estate, Domino’s Pizza, DS Containers, ESM Products, Flolo Corporation, FNBC Bank & Trust, Frain Industries, Gary Spielman Plumbing, Groebner, Haggerty Ford and Hawthorne’s Backyard Bar & Grill. Also donating were HFI, Integrated Control Technologies, Jel Sert, Jiffy Lube, Joshua’s Pest Control, Kentucky Fried Chicken, KRK Mechanical, Marcy Laboratories, Metro Self Storage, Mineral Masters, ORG Chem LLC, Perfect Plastic, Resto Paint, Rite Way Automotive Service, Royal Polish Nail & Salon, S.S. Schwarz Construction, St. Andrews Golf & Country Club, West Chicago Community High School Physical Education Teacher, We Grow Dreams Greenhouse & Garden Center, West Chicago Professional Center, West Chicago Social Club and Western DuPage Chamber of Commerce.
The Police Department thanked Police Detective Robbi Peterson, its Special Olympics Ambassador. “He is the one who organized and set up all the Coffee for Champions locations. He is the one who came up with the Meet the Chief Coffee/Donut Delivery idea. He is the reason we are able to support all of these amazing athletes.”
Peterson said, “The West Chicago community truly supports the Illinois Law Enforcement Torch Run for Special Olympics and Special Olympics Illinois. It takes a great team of like minded people to make great things happen and that is what I get to work with on a daily basis. The athletes of Special Olympics Illinois will now have the opportunity to experience that same greatness due to the generosity of our community through the programs and opportunities these donations support. Thanks to all who assisted in making this day a big success…these were great opportunities to get donations and interact with the community.” (www.merleburl.com)
AROUND AND ABOUT
In Benjamin School District 25, the first day of school for students in first through eighth grade is Wednesday, August 25, for kindergarten Thursday, August 26, and for preschool Monday, August 30, 2021.
West Chicago Garden Club meeting is Thursday, August 26, 2021, at St. Andrew Lutheran Church,155 North Prince Crossing Road. Short Business meeting is at 7:00 p.m. followed by the program at 7:15 p.m. Presenting the program, “Birds Are Amazing,” are Bob and Kathy Andrini. They relate facts, stories and behaviors of birds, plus a wide variety of pictures.
Bob is a former biology teacher at Addison Trail High School, where he taught for 33 years. Kathy taught preschool for 20 years. They share a love of educating others about birding and nature and continue to teach classes, give presentations for the St. Charles Park District, and lead birding trips for Kane County Audubon Society. Bob was president of the Kane County Audubon Society for 23 years.(www.merleburl.com)
West Chicago Public Library’s Gettin’ Crafty program, “Colorful Mandalas,” is at 6:00 p.m. Thursday, August 26, 2021, via Zoom. The program teaches a bit about color theory and how to make a mandala. Participants are able to pick up a kit bag with all the materials needed after registering at https://wcpld.info, under calendar. Participants receive a separate email a week before the program, which tells them when to pick up the kit bag and the link to Zoom. Registration ends Saturday, August 21.
A free Community Document Shredding event takes place from 9:00 a.m. to noon Saturday, August 28, 2021, at Leman Middle School, 238 East Hazel Street, Entrance 1 off Joliet Street. There is a three box or two paper bag limit. Sponsors are State Senator Karina Villa, Stare Representative Maura Hirschauer, Dupage Credit Union and SCARCE.
West Chicago Food Fest takes place from 11:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. Saturday, August 28, 2021, in the historic downtown district. The event includes food vendors, musical entertainment and family activities.There are picnic tables available and guests can bring chairs and blankets to enjoy the food and musical entertainment. For further information, visit https://westchicago.org/city-events/west-chicago-food-festival/ .
There are 13 food vendors, four with a West Chicago connection-.Sugar Mama’s Mini Donuts, Jorge’s Paleteria y Neveria , Kindred Coffee Roasters and Kissed by Fire BBQ & Pizza. Based in West Chicago, Sugar Mama’s Mini Donuts makes hot, fresh mini donuts at farmers markets and special events. Jorge’s Paleteria y Neveria, an ice cream shop, is located at 110 South Neltnor Boulevard. Kindred Coffee Roasters, a coffee shop at 148 West Washington Street, is owned by West Chicago residents Ryan Hammer, Sarah and Patrick Harms. Dave Glomp, Class of 1987 West Chicago Community High School graduate, is the owner of Kissed by Fire BBQ & Pizza, a barbecue food truck. Other vendors are Yum Dum Food Truck, Flying Hawaiian, Sno Problems, Churros y Chocolate Inc., La Humita on Wheels, Culinary Gangster, Popcorn Time and Dave’s Atomic Hot Sauce.
Providing the musical entertainment is Roots Rock Society from 11:00 a.m. to12:00 p.m., Off the Charts from 12:30 p.m. to 1:30 p.m.and White Saddle Band from 2:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m. Roots Rock Society Reggae Band, founded in December of 1986, strongly believes in keeping their heritage and culture alive with their energetic live show and innovative blend of reggae, calypso, soul, zouk and the rhythms of the African background. The smooth vocals, vibrant instruments are matched with exotic rhythms and delightful lyrics performed in English with Spanish and French accents. Off the Charts performs music hits from the 60s to today’s chart topping songs that people know. They cover a variety of genres from well-known Rock, 80s hits, Country chart toppers, as well as current Top 40. White Saddle Band is a country band whose set list ranges from Kenny Chesney to Keith Urban, from Merle Haggard to Toby Keith, and from Elvis to Jimmy Buffett, with the occasional original tune thrown in for fun.
The West Chicago City Museum, 132 Main Street, shows how kitchens have changed through the years. Guests have the hands-on experience with historic food tools. All children take home an activity craft kit. Healthy West Chicago offers free Kids Healthy Cooking classes taught by the chefs from The Kitchen Table. Class times are11:30 a.m., 12:30 p.m. and 1:30 p.m. To guarantee a time slot, pre-register at https://forms.gle/kEU7WehGcaYq7eu76. Other activities include a glitter tattooist and balloonist. (www.merleburl.com)
The Care Van COVID-19 vaccination clinic is at the West Chicago Public Library, 118 West Washington Street. The walk-in clinic is open from 3:00 to 5:00 p.m. Monday, August 30, 2021; appointments are not necessary. It is open to all who are 12 years and older, including those who do not have health insurance of legal immigration status.The Van offers either the Pfizer vaccine, which requires two doses 21 days apart or the one dose Johnson & Johnson vaccine. For more information, call (630) 692-7400. (www.merleburl.com)
September is Library Card Sign-Up Month. West Chicago Public Library, 118 West Washington Street, has several activities to celebrate the month. Baby Yoda library cards soon will be available for new and current library holders. Persons, using their library card to check out items at the Circulation Desk, have the opportunity to spin the prize wheel. Prizes change weekly. The library hosts a Library Card Party from noon to 2:00 p.m. Saturday, September 11,2021. Persons who sign up for a library card on this date receive a fun To-Go Bag. (www.merleburl.com)
Beginning Wednesday, September 1, 2021, the First Division Museum at Cantigny Park, 1S151 Winfield Road, exhibits it UH-helicopter, an iconic symbol of the Viet Nam War The macro artifact is interpreted outdoors for one month. The Bell UH-1 Iroquois helicopter, or “Huey,” was the workhorse for Army assault units in Vietnam. Its body style and rotor sound made it one of the most recognized aircraft in the world. The UH-1 was the first turbine powered helicopter to enter production for the U.S. military and entered service in 1959. Different configurations of the UH-1 were deployed in Vietnam in a variety of roles, including troop transport, air assault, command and control, and evacuation of the wounded. With its flexibility and speed, the ubiquitous Huey transformed modern warfare, allowing commanders to place combat troops at almost any point on the battlefield, engage the enemy and quickly extract soldiers upon mission completion.
Museum educators present a family program, “Masters of Flight: The Nature of Huey,” at 6:00 p.m. Friday, September 24. There will be activities and demonstrations for all ages. The program is free, but reservations are required and may be made by visiting FDMuseum.org or call (630) 260-8162. Also in September, the First Division Museum will exhibit and interpret pieces from its historic military vehicle fleet every Thursday, from 1 to 3 pm, weather permitting. Exhibit dates are September 2, 9, 16, 23 and 30.
The First Division Museum at Cantigny Park presents its Date with History series program at 7:00 p.m. Thursday, September 2, 2021, via Zoom. Presenting the program is author and former Navy SEAL Benjamin H. Milligan, who discusses his newly published book, “By Water Beneath the Walls: The Rise of the Navy SEALS.” He became a Navy SEAL in 2001 and is a recipient of the Bronze Star and other awards. Registration is required at FDMuseum.org, Milligan’s book captures the history of the SEALS, one the world’s most elite commando forces. It also is the story of how U.S. special operations came to be, and how the SEALS emerged as America’s first permanent commando force, when other units seemed predestined to seize that role. He shares some details from hair-curling, epic raids carried out by his heroic naval predecessors and contemporaries.
“Chicago True Stories of the 1920s” is the West Chicago Public Library virtual program at 7:00 p.m. Wednesday, September 1, 2021, via Zoom. Flora takes participants back in time to entertain and educate. To Register, visit wcpld.info, under calendar under calendar.(www.merleburl.com)
Maggie Capettini, former West Chicago City Museum education director, participates in an exhibit and teaches a workshop in September 2021. Two of her paintings are in the “Survey Midwest” exhibit from Thursday, September 9, through Saturday, September 18, in the Indiana University Kokomo Downtown Gallery. The exhibit focuses on the midwestern landscape, as seen by artists living within the following states, Ohio, Michigan, Indiana, Illinois, and Wisconsin.
The plein air painting workshop is from 9:00 a.m. to noon Saturday, September 11, at the Schweikher House 645 Meacham Road in Schaumburg. She demonstrates how she combines brushwork, knife painting and oil pigment sticks. Participants then have the opportunity to begin their own painting and she gives easel-side feedback. The cost is $25 with participants bringing their own supplies. To register, visit https://www.schweikherhouse.org/events. (www.merleburl.com)
There are three vacancies on the West Chicago Cultural Arts Commission. Persons interested in applying should email Commission Staff Liaison Rosemary Mackey at email@example.com. The Commission meets at 7:00 p.m. the first Thursday of each month. The duties include enriching the lives of all West Chicago residents through the support of cultural arts activities, sponsoring art shows, special events and workshops, and maintaining local artist network.
Support our local businesses. Gorditos Liselena Restaurant is now in the location formerly known as Mass-Vida, 207 Main Street. Hours are 9:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m.
A COVID-19 vaccination clinic is open from 2:30 to 6:00 p.m. Tuesdays at St. Andrew Lutheran Church, 155 North Prince Crossing Road. The clinic is for persons age 18 and older. To make an appointment, call the church office at (630) 231-3787 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
A COVID-19 testing site is open from 8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Tuesdays and Thursdays in a VNA Health Care Mobile at St. Andrew Lutheran Church, 155 North Prince Crossing Road. There is no charge. Appointments are required and may be made at (630) 892-4355 or (847) 717-6455
The DuPage County Health Department developed a dashboard to provide information on the total number of people, in DuPage County, who have tested positive for COVID-19. In addition, the dashboard includes a map which shows the distribution of reported cases by municipality and is updated at 4:00 p.m. daily. DuPage County’s “COVID-19 Dashboard” is a one-stop-shop for all the information it offers including a town-by-town breakdown of cases. As of Monday, August 23, 2021, there were 4,859 cases and 53 deaths; this is the number from the beginning of track recording.
To keep residents aware of community COVID-19 updates, the City has posted West Chicago’s COVID-19 COMMUNICATIONS CENTER on its website, www.westchicago.org. It is located on the upper left-hand side in red. Clicking on this, residents can see the latest information.
Sincere sympathy is extended to the family of Sharon R. Fawell, who at the age of 87 passed away Monday, August 16, 2021.
Deepest sympathy is expressed to the family of Colette C. Miller, who at the age of 93 passed away Thursday, August 19, 2021.
When Blanco Rios, news writer and digital producer at ABC Chicago, interviewed State Senator Karina Villa, it was more than a working assignment. There was some social time. Both were raised in West Chicago, were childhood friends and graduates of West Chicago Community High School. Rios graduated in 1995 and Villa graduated in 1996. (www.merleburl.com)
Debbie and Doug Domeracki celebrated their 35th Wedding Anniversary Monday, August 23, 2021.
Not only was there entertainment, art and family activities at the West Chicago Park District’s Taco and Art Fest, but there also was a taco war. Winning the battle for the best tacos was Santa Barbara, a mom and pop food truck owned by West Chicago residents.The barbacoa tacos topped the list. Lily Medina, Park District Marketing & Communications Manager, explained, “Attendees had the opportunity to purchase a voting card from the Taco Wars tent. The card granted them the best taco from each vendor in return. At the time of redemption, the vendor would hole punch the card and once they had tried them both they would go back to the Taco War booth and submit their vote in the container of their favorite one. Buying the voting card was a cheaper price than buying straight from the vendors and the funds raised benefited the Friends of the West Chicago Parks Foundation, which provides funds for recreational scholarships for families in need within the community.” (www.merleburl.com)
A Leman Middle School Student received the 2021 Superintendent Art Award for his artwork. Prior to COVID-19 there was a yearly art show at Leman Middle School. It included artwork from students in West Chicago Elementary School District 33. Gina Steinbrecher, Coordinator of Communications and Community Relations, explained, “The Superintendent would choose a piece of artwork from each grade level as the Superintendent Choice.The artwork is framed and displayed in the District office. Last year the district did not hold this event.” The student’s piece of artwork chosen “captured the year of COVID in our schools and Superintendent Kristina Davis wanted to have it framed and placed in the district office.” (www.merleburl.com)
Ducky Derby, which benefitted Special Olympics Illinois, was successful with the adoption of 70,000 rubber ducky’s to “race” down the Chicago River. More than $$400,000 was raised, Fifty-one ducks were adopted on behalf of the West Chicago Police Department. Those ducks raised $227 for the athletes of SOIL.
The first day of school at Wheaton Academy was Thursday, August 19, 2021. (www.merleburl.com)
Toby, a member of Peace Jam, harvested two racks of Romaine lettuce to deliver to Neighborhood Food Pantries. There are two more racks to harvest next week. St. Michaels United Church of Christ Church sponsors the student Peace Jam group in West Chicago, and one of its projects for service was learning and growing hydroponic food in the basement of the food pantry at 123 Fremont Street and to provide healthy local food to those who need it. The members also grow food in the garden across the street from the church on Washington Ave. (www.merleburl.com).
The West Chicago Lions Club held its annual new Teachers Luncheon for new faculty and staff in West Chicago Elementary School District 33 and Benjamin Schoo District 25. Friday, August 13, 2021, at the ARC Center. Catering the event was Augustino’s Rock and Roll Deli and Grill. Western DuPage Chamber of Commerce gave bags filled with donation from its members to the new faculty and staff.
Omar Espinosa, Lions Club president, was moderator for the program. Mayor Ruben Pineda said he attended Turner the junior high and the high school, and after he left each of these schools, there was a building addition. “Teacher’s help prepare the youth for life’s challenges.” He mentioned the many resources in City available to the students and teachers, such as the museum, the library and the park district. “Our youth are our most precious commodity.” Fernando Ramirez, president of Mexican Cultural Center DuPage, explained the organization’s goals and purposes. “We celebrate and tell about Mexican culture through different programs such as Miss Mexican Heritage Scholastic Pageant and Mexican Independence Day.” Gina Radun, Park District Superintendent of Recreation, told about the different programs the district offers. Dave Sabathne, CEO/president Western DuPage Chamber of Commerce, said, “Learning is a life learning experience and teachers incorporate this into the lives of youth….The dynamics change, such as technology now a big part in lives. You make the students successful teaching them to learn.”
Lori Chassee, Governor of Lions District 1-J and City Ward 1 Alderman, told about the Lions Club on the international level, district level and local level. “The Lions Club is the oldest, largest and greatest service organization in the world.” The West Chicago Lions Club provides vision screens, makes donation to the food pantry, library, Honor Flight, and offer scholarships to name a few. “The club restored the Sailors and Soldiers Monument in Oakwood Cemetery. Children are important. If you need assistance, the Lions Club is willing to help.”
Leah DeLuca, Director for Teaching and Learning for District 33, thanked the Lions Club for hosting the luncheon and welcoming new teachers. Principals of each school introduced new staff.
Currier School principal is Mark Truckenbrod. New staff are Olivia Bogacz, Music; Stephanie Spoerl, 4th Grade Remote; and Kristine Mutchler, Lead Tech.
Mary Kassir is Gary School principal. Lilian Brandt, 4th Grade Dual; Brittany Smith, Assistant Principal; Lisette Robles, 1st Grade Dual; Keely Walker, Art; Evelyn Gallardo, Kindergarten Dual; Jose Torres, Social & Emotional Learning; Breanna Evola, Remote teacher; and Tanner Longfellow, Orchestra are the new faculty and staff.
Indian Knoll School principal is Jacqueline Campos. New faculty and staff are Karina Bolivar, Dual Language; Coleen McLaughlin, Social & Emotional Learning; Nina Kucher, Primary Gifted and Talented Education; and Amanda Fratinardo, Remote Teacher.
Lisette Jacobson is Pioneer School principal. Brenda Perez, Dual; Susan Reynolds, Reading Coach; Rosalinda Nino, Social Worker; Bev Sanchez, General Education Remote; Emy Bacheller, Social Worker; Nicole Simmons, Learning Behavioral Specialist 1; and Jennifer Buchanan, Learning Behavioral Specialist 1 are the new faculty and staff.
Maurice McDavid is Turner School principal. New staff and faculty are Julie Pavon, Psychologist; Joran Miller, Generał Education; Xenia Delgado, Instructional Coach English as a Second Language; Shaquita Cargo, General Education Remote; Mary Zonca, Instructional Coach English as A Second Language and Demetra Kontakos, Primary Gifted and Talented Education.
Wegner School principal is Jamee Kenney. Nicla Renner, Instructional Coach English as a Second Language; Kelsey Armstrong, Dual Language; Michelle Nava, Dual Language; Wilyna Frankel, Social Worker; Maria Podbielska, Generał Education; Jennifer Hilbawi, Dual Language; Mariah Cavanaugh, General Education; Maria Gonzales-Magana, Dual Language; Megan Devine, Learning Behavioral Specialist 1; and Carri Chambers, General Education are the new staff and faculty.
Brenda Vishanoff is Early Learning Center principal. New staff and faculty are Jobeth Wilson, Social Worker; and Alicia Voss, Preschool bilingual.
Maggie Lay is Leman Middle School principal. New faculty and staff are Ellen Zittere, Learning Behavioral Specialist 1; Charles Alexander, Math; Angeles Godoy, Learning Behavioral Specialist 1; Kimberly Lozano, Dual English as a Second Language; Maria Barrios, Dual English as a Second Language; Erika Jimenez, Dual English as a Second Language; Nicole Carrillio-Lavaire, Psychologist; Jodeci Townsend, Art; Jose Bermudez, Math; Yarely Luna, Dual English as a Second Language; Gloria Gallegos, Dual English as a Second Language; and Jasmine Velazquez, Learning Behavioral Specialist 1.
Others are Maribel, Montoya, Dual Social Studies; Ramona Drozek, Digital Literacy Teacher; Archana Shukla, Self-Contained Learning Behavioral Specialist 1; Rebecca Mayton, Sixth Grade Science; Danielle Drumm, Local Education Agency Representative; Ellen UHLIR, Speech Language Pathologist; Hollie Donovan, Dual Social Studies; Denyse Dozier, Learning Behavioral Specialist 1; Liz Meyers English Language Arts; Kristine Turner, Learning Behavioral Specialist 1-Achieve; Betty Mann, Health Teacher; Jennifer Ross, Dean; Matthew Mordini, Dean; and Carmela Getz, Dean.
New District 33 staff are Sarah Burnett, Employee & Labor Relations Coordinator; Allison Moe, Student Services Coordinator; and Melissa Favata and Hannah Christie, Elementary School Assistant Principals.
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