Community Fellowship Church, 28W240 North Avenue, Candlelight Christmas Eve services are at 3:00 and 4:15 p.m.
Faith Community Church, 910 Main Street, Christmas Eve service is at 6:30 p.m.
First United Methodist Church of West Chicago, 643 East Washington Street, Christmas Eve services is at 7:30 p.m.
Glen Arbor Community Church, 204 Church Street, Christmas service is at 10:00 a.m. Sunday.
Hispanic Church of the Nazarene Christmas service is at 1:30 p.m. Sunday at the Methodist church, 643 East Washington Street.
New Jerusalem House of Prayer, 100 Wycliffe Drive, Christmas Eve service is at 4:30 p.m.
New Life Bilingual Church, 468 Ann Street, Christmas service is at 10:30 a.m. Sunday.
Nueva Esperanza (New Hope) Christmas service is at 11:15 a.m. Sunday. The church meets at Faith Community Church, 910 Main Street.
Real Life Church, 525 North Neltnor Boulevard, Christmas service is at 10:00 a.m.Sunday.
Renewal Church Christmas celebration is at 9:15 and 10:45 a.m.Sunday at the ARC, 201 West National Street.
St Andrew Lutheran Church, 155 North Prince Crossing Road, has three Christmas Eve services. The contemporary service is at 4:00 p.m., the Spanish service is at 7:00 p.m. and the traditional candlelight service is at 9:00 p.m.
St. Mary’s Catholic Church, 140 North Oakwood Avenue, Christmas Eve services begin at 4:00 p.m. with an English Mass, the Spanish Mass is at 6:00 p.m. and the Latin Mass is at midnight. On Christmas Day, the English Mass is at 9:00 a.m. and the Spanish Mass is at 11:00 a.m.
St. Michael’s United Church of Christ, 400 West Washington Street, Christmas Eve service is at 10:30 p.m.
Trinity Lutheran Church, 338 George Street, Christmas Eve service is at 7:00 p.m. The Christmas service is at 10:00 a.m. and the Spanish service is at noon.
Water’s Edge Bible Church, 209 South Oakwood Avenue, holds its Christmas Eve service at 6:00 p.m. Sunday.
West Chicago Church of Christ, 350 James Street, Christmas Eve service is Sunday at 9:00 a.m.
Wheaton Bible Church, 27W500 North Avenue, Christmas Eve services, both English and Spanish, are at 2:00, 4:00 p.m. 6:00 and 8:00 p.m.
AROUND AND ABOUT
Through an end of the year fundraiser, We Grow Greenhouse & Garden Center, 1055 West Washington Street, seeks to raise $30,000 with Ball Horticultural matching the funds raised up to $15,000. The Greenhouses is in need of some major work such as new heaters, exhaust fans, new planting benches and display areas. With the goal of expanding the Greenhouse capabilities, the business can attract more customers and see it grow. To make a donation, mail to We Go Dreams, P.O. Box 861, or visit the website www.wegodrems.org. The deadline for donations is Monday, December 31, 2018.
The Greenhouse mission, a not-for-profit organization, is to provide people with disabilities the opportunity to lead fulfilling lives and to train and work in a supportive, safe and caring environment while producing and providing products and services to the community.
West Chicago Police Department once again is working with the DuPage County Marine Corps League to collect toys for the US Marines Corps Reserve “Toys for Tots” program. The ages are from infant through 16 years of age. Toys are donated to children in local area communities. Drop off new unwrapped toys during regular business hours of 7:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. Monday through Friday, through Friday, December 21, 2018, in the decorated box in the lobby at the Police Station, 325 Spencer Street. Stuffed animals should be placed in a clear plastic bag and toy weapons are not accepted. The toys then go to a warehouse, where they are sorted and distributed. The Department will accept toys for a short period of time after the holidays for last minute requests that could not be filled before the holiday. The Police Department only collects the toys and is not in charge of distribution. Persons wishing to be on the list to receive toys should visit the website www.toysfortots.org, navigate to the Request Toys tab and then click DuPage County. For further information, call Police Officer Mike Zepeda, who coordinates the program in West Chicago, at (630) 293-2222. As a side note Groot Industries donated three full boxes of toys.
The West Chicago Cultural Arts Commission sponsors its Twelfth Annual Community Art Banner Exhibit. The theme is “Love.” The artwork may be any media with no limitation to technique or subject matter. An independent juror selects the works of art. Each winning design is reproduced and featured in the 2019 West Chicago Banner Exhibition from May to September. All entries are due by Friday, February 1, 2019. Informational sheets are available at the City Museum, 132 Main Street, Gallery 200, 103 W. Washington Street or online www.westchicago.org, under Residential Forms. Call Rosemary Mackey at (630) 293-2000, extension 139 for more information.
Sincere sympathy is extended to the family of Charles G. “Chuck” Madsen, who at the age of 95 passed away November 13, 2018.
Deepest sympathy is expressed to the family of Dick Neville, who at the age of 60 passed away Wednesday, November 21, 2018.
Sincere sympathy is extended to the family of Bill Brauer, who at the age of 87 passed away, Saturday, December 15, 2018.
Reverend Josh Ebner, pastor at St. Andrew Lutheran Church, gave the invocation at the DuPage County Board meeting, Tuesday, December 11, 2018.
Wheaton Academy celebrated its 165th Anniversary Friday, December 14, 2018.
West Chicago Cheerleading Organization performed very well in the Eleventh Annual Illinois Recreation Cheerleading Association State Championship competition at Sears Centre. The fifth and eighth grade teams won the State Championships. The fourth grade team took third place. (www.merleburl.com)
West Chicago resident Mike Harper, history teacher at St. Francis High School, was featured in the Education section of Neighbor in the Monday, December 10, 2018, issue of the “Daily Herald.”
It is often heard that practice makes perfect. However, the students in the Debi Inch Piano Studio learned “practice makes a difference one practice at a time.” Through the play-a-thon held during Thanksgiving week, Debi Inch Piano Studio raised more than $1,000. The students requested sponsorships for a pledge of $1 to $5 per five extra practices during the week. The monies were donated to Feed My Starving Children. Inch said, “That’s not bad for a small piano studio. I am so proud of my piano students who each year are learning to give to less fortunate children. This time it was to feed under privileged kids around the world.”
The consolidated election for officials in the City of West Chicago, West Chicago Public Library District, West Chicago Elementary School District 33, Community High School District 94, and Benjamin School District 25 is Tuesday, April 2, 2018. The last day for filing petitions was Monday, December 17.
City of West Chicago positions open are four-year terms for one alderman in each of the city’s seven wards, plus three unexpired two-year terms. Filing petitions were Ward 1, Jim Beifuss, incumbent; Ward 2, Jayme Sheahan for the four-year term, incumbent, and Heather Brown for the two-year term, incumbent; Ward 3, Al Hallett, incumbent; Ward 4, Melissa Ferguson, incumbent, and Jim Cochiaro; Ward 5, Matt Garling for the four-year term, incumbent, and Chris Swiatek for the two-year term, incumbent, Ward 6, Becky Stout for the four-year term, incumbent, and Jeanne Short for the two-year term, incumbent; and Ward 7, Noreen M. Ligino-Kubinski, incumbent.
In the West Chicago Public Library District, there are four four-year positions open for the Board of Trustees. Turning in petitions were Nancy Conradt, Frank J. Fokta and Patricia Weninger and Thomas Tawney, incumbents, and Corrine Jakacki-Dattomo.
West Chicago Park District has two six-year terms and one three-year unexpired term open for the Board of Commissioners. Filing petitions for the six year terms were Frank Lenertz and Reggie Bass, both incumbents
In West Chicago Elementary School District 33, there are three four-year seats open for the Board of Education. Turning in petitions were Phoebe Balzer, incumbent, and Rita Belgeman, Tom Doyle, Christian Rivera and Carl G. Meyer.
In Community High School District 94, there are three four-year positions and one two-year unexpired position open for the Board of Education. Filing petitions for the four-year terms were Kathi Doremus, Lauren Alexis, both incumbents, and Lynn Casey-Maher , Jennifer Shilakais Wiesner and Bob Brown. Filing the petition for the two-year term was Dean Klapatch.
In Benjamin School District 25, there are three four-year positions and one two-year position for the Board of Education. Filing petitions for the four-year positions were Jodi Krause, Tammy Mastroianni and Lisa Willuwiet, all incumbents.
More than 50 people attended the Community Forum held Wednesday, December 5, 2018. Sitting on the panel were Mayor Ruben Pineda, Police Chief Mike Uplegger, Ray Del Real, West Chicago CommunityHigh School Dean of Student Discipline; Dr. Charles Johns, Superintendent of West Chicago Elementary School District 33; Ben Weseloh, Director of West Chicago Public Library District; and Gary Major, Executive Director of West Chicago Park District. All stated that safety for attendees at all places is important.
Weseloh explained staff patrols on an hourly basis and the District focuses on having a safe and welcoming environment. Major said the same was true with the Park District. “We have 3,000 to 4,000 people a week at the ARC.”
Dr. Johns explained there are programs occurring on a regular basis, such as We Go Together for Kids, which involves many partners, Birth to Three and Educare. “All of these interact with the community in a positive way.” He said the Middle School had some problems last year. “We have made some changes in the leadership and have added more opportunities for students to participate.”
Referring to the two recent murders, Del Real said, “We are working with the students. We have relatives and friends of the people involved in the crimes.” He added, “The High School has two uniformed resource officers and District 33 has one and they have great partnerships with the youths…We are diligent in our watch in the hallways, do not see gang graffiti. If there is any fighting, we rely on Board support for school discipline.”
Mayor Pineda said, “West Chicago is a safe community. The two murders were isolated incidents. The gang culture is not like it was in the 90s. The City is transparent in its information to the public and communicates well with its citizens.”
Chief Uplegger explained that one of the murders was gang related and one was not. “When a crime is under investigation, we do not release much information. We want to solve it, to capture the persons responsible.…Gangs use social media and have their own.” To open up the communication more and get more community involvement the Police Department will have a community relations officer starting January 1 and we hope to start up the Neighborhood Watch program again.”
Although all the speakers stressed how important it is for the community to communicate with them, Uplegger said it might have helped with the most recent murder. The individuals caused problems at several locations and no one called the police .“ People need to call 911.” He mentioned the following communication that is on the Facebook page of the Police Department.
“We find people are hesitant to call 9-1-1 when police services are needed. This could be due to uncertainty about when 9-1-1 is appropriate. The West Chicago Police Department, like most other police departments, has an administrative line 630-293-2222; however, this is not the way to file a police report or have an officer respond even in a non-emergency situation. The most important thing to remember is 9-1-1 is no longer just for emergencies; 9-1-1 is the entry point to the modern law enforcement system. Officers are set up to respond from their squad car, which is their mobile office. DuComm 9-1-1 telecommunicators are trained to get specific information officers need for an appropriate response. When DuComm gets the information directly from you, it expedites the response you will receive and streamlines the process. As a basic rule if you need to speak with an officer, call 9-1-1. If you have an administrative question, such as getting a copy of a police report or other matters that don’t require an officer response, then call our administrative line Monday through Friday 7:00am until 7:00pm.” (www.merleburl.com)
In its basketball game against Downers Grove, WeGo Wildcats Special Olympics Club lost with a score of 41-33. Club president Dave Hempe said, “It was an entertaining game, but Downers Grove had a player who really hit, shooting 3 pointers. I believe he had four of them. The gym had a lot of cheering for both sides and I am sure the athletes had fun.”
One never knows what travels on the tracks through our community. At 1:50 a.m. Friday, December 4, 2018, the George Bush 41 engine passed through West Chicago on its way to the Proviso rail yard, where it would stay for three days before moving on. West Chicago resident and photographer David Toney captured a photo of it. He followed the progress of the engine from Clinton, Iowa through DeKalb Geneva and La Fox. (www.merleburl.com)
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