The celebration of Thanksgiving will be different for many. Yet, there are many things for which to be thankful and for which the pandemic has not made a difference. These include beautiful sunrises and sunsets, vibrant fall colors, the singing of birds and, best of all, our friends and families. Wishing all of you a HAPPY THANKSGIVING!
AROUND AND ABOUT
Due to a surge of a Covid-10 cases in West Chicago, the West Chicago Public Library building is closed until the positivity rate is below 8 percent for two consecutive weeks in West Chicago. This includes the suspension in-person services of computer, copier, scanner, fax and Grab and Go. Curbside service is still available from 11:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. Monday through Thursday and from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Friday and Saturday.
Library staff is available to help during curbside service areas via chat, email email@example.com, and phone (630) 231-1552. They can help patrons find reading materials, place holds for curbside pickup, find library resources and answer library related questions. Visit https://wcpld.info/important-covid-update/ for more information. (www.merleburl.com)
Due to the new Tier 3 COVID-19 mandate, restrictions are in place for West Chicago District facilities and programs. Areas closed at the ARC Center, 102 West National Street, are gym courts, MAC gym, spin room, dance and fitness rooms. Temporary hours of operation are from 7:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. Mondays through Thursdays, from 7:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays, and closed Sundays. Zone 250 is closed
All in-house programming is cancelled. Virtual classes offerings are posted on the website. The holiday schedule of Holiday Pet Photos and ZOOM to the North Pole still take place. Access to the Fitness Center and Indoor Track are limited to individual members. For complete list of restrictions and updates, visit the district website www.we-goparks.org.Customer. Service team and staff are available to answer questions.
Due to the Tier 3 mandate, Republic Bank lobbies are open to clients by appointment only. The drive up lanes are open and offer extended services during operating hours. Locations are 101 Main Street and 105 East Roosevelt Road.
Also due to Tier 3 mandate, the West Chicago City Museum, 132 Main Street, and Gallery 200, 103 West Washington Street, are closed.
Frosty may not be here on a specific day as in the past, but he is using the magic in that old silk hat to visit various location in the community. Frosty and the City of Wes Chicago put together a Frosty Virtual Scavenger Hunt which continues through to 11:59 p.m. Wednesday, December 9, 2020. The ten places he will visit appear on Facebook, https://www.facebook.com/West-Chicago-Frosty-Fest-Frosty-5k-106246407872936/?view_public_for=106246407872936 on a staggered basis. As residents follow Frosty, they can submit their guess of the location. All correct guesses are then entered to win a prize in a random selection, scheduled for Thursday, December 10, 2020.
Sonny Acres, 29W310 E. North Avenue, opens for the Christmas Holiday Season Friday, November 27, 2020. The event features Christmas decorations, trees for sale, hand-made wreaths, horse drawn carriage rides, Santa and his workshop, hot drinks, amusements and seasonal merchandise. (www.merleburl.com)
West Chicago Park District is participating in Black Friday sales with a 50 percent off on walking track passes at the ARC Center, $25 for a yearly membership for park district residents. The coupon is BF50 and only Friday and Saturday, November 27 and 28, 2020. For information, call (630) 231 9474 or to sign up visit the district website at www.we-goparks.org.
With the holiday season upon us, the onset of decorating begins in earnest, which includes the discovery of strands of incandescent and LED holiday lights that no longer work and finding a way of ecological disposal. The City provides the “green” answer with the offer of free recycling for the holiday lights and extension cords from Friday, November 27, 2020, through Friday, January 17, 2021. The offer is open to residents, businesses, clubs, churches and organizations. Drop-off locations are City Hall, 475 Main Street, open limited hours of 8:00 a.m. to noon; First United Methodist Church of West Chicago, by exterior door at 643 East Washington Street; Murphy Ace Hardware, 319 South Neltnor Boulevard; Water Treatment Plant, 1400 West Hawthorne Lane; West Chicago Public Library District, 118 WestWashington Street; and the ARC Center, 201 West National Street.
This year the West Chicago Environmental Commission coordinates the program with Groot Industries for recycling purposes. Previously the City used Elgin Recycling and Groot supplied the tote bins. Tim Wilson, Assistant Director of Public Works, explained, “Last year’s contract with Groot included holiday light recycling.” The amount collected in 2019 was 738 pounds, an increase from 622 pounds collected in 2019. (www.merleburl.com)
Since COVID-19 makes it difficult for potential candidates in the Tuesday, April 6, 2021, Consolidated Election to get signatures for petitions, the League of Women Voters of Wheaton makes it simpler. The League sponsors a drive thru petition signing event from 11:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. (note time change) Saturday, November 28, 2020, in the parking lot at the Fox Community Center, 306 Main Street. The candidates are available to offer their petitions to registered voters, who remain in their cars. The League provides pens and gloves. Candidates are asked to come at 10:30 a.m. to receive name placards and information. The candidates planning to attend can email LWVW member Barb Laimins at firstname.lastname@example.org,
The consolidated election is 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. City of West Chicago positions open are Mayor, City Clerk and seven Aldermen. In the West Chicago Public Library District, there are three four-year terms and one unexpired two-year term for the Board of Trustees. In the West Chicago Park District, there is one four-year unexpired term and one two-year unexpired term open for the Board of Commissioners. In West Chicago Elementary School District 33, there are three four-year seats and one two-year unexpired term open for the Board of Education. In Community High School District 94, there are four four-year positions and one two-year unexpired position open for the Board of Education. In Benjamin School District 25, there are four four-year terms open.
Barb Laimins, West Chicago resident and vice president of League of Women Voters of Wheaton, created a slide show on running for local office, https://my.lwv.org/illinois/wheaton/voting-elections/running-local-office. (www.merleburl.com)
A free Flu Shot Clinic for ages 3 to 64 is from 2:00 to 6:00 p.m. Monday, November 30, 2020, at St. Mary’s Church, 140 North Oakwood Avenue. Appointments are not needed. The clinics are the result of partnerships of Healthy West Chicago, St. Andrew Lutheran Church, Northwestern Medicine and WeGo Together for Kids. (merleburl.com)
In the Consolidated Election Tuesday, April 6, 2020, all township elected officials are up for election. Elected officials are Supervisor, Clerk, Road Commissioner, Assessor and four Trustees. To determine who will be on the slate, the established political parties in the Township of Winfield and Wayne hold caucuses Tuesday, December 1, 2020. The governor’s Tier 3 mandate exempts caucuses.
The Winfield Republican Party Township Caucus is at the Courtyard Banquets, 3200 Route 59 in Warrenville. Registration is at 6:00 p.m. and the meeting is at 7:00 p.m. The Winfield Democratic Party Township Caucus is at 6:00 p.m. at Charles R. Beggs Activity Center, ON020 County Farm Road in Winfield.
The Wayne Township Republican Part Township Caucus is at 7:00 p.m. in the Senior Center at Wayne Township, 27W031 North Avenue. The Wayne Township Democratic Party Caucus is at 7:00 p.m. in the Program Room at the Bartlett Park District Community Center, 700 South Bartlett Road.
Unable to host its annual Holiday celebration due to COVID-19 , the West Chicago Public Library has Virtual “Home for the Holidays” programs planned for Wednesday, December 2, 2020. Most can be seen on Facebook, https://www.facebook.com/wcpld/. At 6:00 p.m. is Storytime with Mrs. Claus. Magazine Gift Box & Gift Wrap demo is at 6:30 p.m. At 7:00 p.m. is Christmastime in the City with Clarence Gordon. Register for this at www.wcpld.info. Geared for youths in 9th through 12th grades, Gift Tags & Holiday in a Jar is at 8:00 p.m. with supply kits available at curbside service. Ending the evening at 8:30 is Holiday Party Games at 8:30 p.m. (www.merleburl.xom)
Despite COVID-19, the annual Frosty 5K Run/Walk takes place, only virtually. The dates are anytime between Friday, December 4 through Sunday, December 13, 2020. The registration fee is $10, which includes a long-sleeve shirt and swag bag. To register, visit : https://raceroster.com/events/2020/35577/frosty-5k-virtual-runwalk.
There is no official race course, participants can use their favorite outdoor 5K route, treadmill of the ARC Center track. The Park District will provide one-day passes to each participant that can be used to run the 5k either on their treadmills or track.
For persons whose last names begin with A through N, shirt and swag bag pick up is from 6:00 to 77:00 p.m. and for participants whose last names begin with Q trough Z, pick up time is 7:00 to 8:00 p.m. Wednesday, December 2. 2020, at the ARC Center, 201 West National Street. (www.merleburl.com)
West Chicago Park District offers a perfect memento for pet owners with Holiday Pet Pictures. The event starts at 9:00 a.m. Saturday, December 5, 2020, at the ARC Center, 201 West National Street. The appointments for pets to have photos taken with Santa are in 15 minute time slots. It is one time slot and photo per pet. Participants enter at the back of the Center; there are directional signs. The charge is $5 for residents and $5 for non-residents. Each registered household receives one photo ornament, plus a digital photo file via email. Register at www.we-goparks.org. (www.merleburl.com)
We Grow Dreams Greenhouse and Garden Center, 1055 West Washington Street, hosts a Christmas event from 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. Saturday, December 5, 2020, part of the festive event will be done, virtually. However, persons can stop by the greenhouse to purchase Christmas gifts from the craft shop, holiday decorations of Poinsettias, table top reindeer, and sno-gnomes. With every $10 spent in the greenhouse, customers receive a raffle ticket to enter for the prize of their choice. Those staying home can make a donation to the greenhouse and have the opportunity to make selections to enter into the raffle and for every $5 donated they receive a free raffle ticket. The drawing takes place at 1:00 p.m. via Facebook. (www.merleburl.com)
Girls of Today Leaders of Tomorrow once again is having its Tamale Sale December 13, 2020, at St. Andrew lutheran Church, 155 North Prince Crossing Road. It is pre-order only with orders due by Tuesday, December 1, 2020. There are three selections, pork/chicken vegetarian, cheese with Chili; and sweet, strawberry/pineapple. Combos must be three of each for a half dozen and six of each for a doze. The cost is $9 for half a dozen and $16 for a dozen. Payment is by cash day of pick up or by PayPal prior to pickup. To order, email email@example.com or text (630) 965-8301.
Girls of Today Leaders of Tomorrow is based in West Chicago and is a 501c3 organization. It mission is to inspire and empower young women to find value within themselves and to achieve the best direction of their lives. The vision is to have a society of young women, who are confident, independent and able to motivate future generations.
West Chicago still will be alive with holiday spirit, although in a different way. To celebrate the traditional Frosty Fest and North Pole Adventure, the City of West Chicago and West Chicago Park District are having a Holiday House Decorating Contest. To participate in the contest, fill the form at https://form.jotform.com/202594838715162.
Homes must be decorated by Monday, December 7, 2020. Judges view the homes between Monday, December 14, and Wednesday, December 16, with winners announced Friday, December 18. Prizes are for first, second and third places, plus People’s Choice. (www.merleburl.com)
Winfield Township once again hosts its Adopt-A-Family program. Businesses, families, individuals and organizations “adopt” a family, purchasing a gift for each child in the family and providing gift cards for holiday meal shopping. Monetary donations also are appreciated. For further information or to adopt a family, call General Assistance Director Claudia Gabrels at (331) 240-2665 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Gabrels said 53 applications were returned with 11 not qualifying as it was an adult only household or lived outside the township. “There are five families left to be adopted.” Because of COVID-19, donors do contactless drop offs and families do contactless pickup in the office this year. “Another difference is there are less donors.”
Wayne Township holds it annual Adopt-A-Family program. Participants purchase a new gift for each member of the family and a $16 meal box. For further information, call (630) 231-7173.
Remember to support our local businesses and local eating establishments.
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 4:00 p.m. Monday, November 23, 2020, there were 2,273 cases and 19 deaths. This is the number from the beginning of track recording. It is important to remember to follow the social distancing order, wear masks and wash hands.
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. A medical assistant now is at the site.DuPage County offers free COVID-19 testing at the DuPage County Complex, 421 North County Farm Road. The sites open from 7:00 a.m., to noon Monday through Friday. Since it is a drive-thru testing site, individuals give themselves a nasal swab test with instructions from staff.
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 Eva T. Bali, who at the age of 79 passed away Saturday, November 14, 2020.
Deepest sympathy is expressed to the family of Colleen Ann Westrom, who at the age of 80 passed away Wednesday, November 18, 2020.
Sincere sympathy is extended to the family of Mary Sanchez, who at the age of 98 passed away Thursday, November 19, 2020.
The Daily Herald featured a photograph by West Chicago resident Sierra Koenig in Your Images photograph contest article in the Tuesday, November 17, 2020, Neighbor section. The picture, taken in Matthlessen State Park, highlights a bridge surrounded by the trees in dynamic fall colors.
Two quilt artworks of West Chicago resident Kathy Steere are being recognized further afield, not just locally. “Whispers of Summer” won Best Sit Down/Domestic Machine Quilting-Aspiring in the 2020 Virtual Quilt Show of Pinterest. “Shadow Climber” was accepted for the 2020 Virtual Quilt Festival in Houston, Texas. It takes place from Thursday, December 3 through Saturday, December 5, 2020. This exhibit is generally considered to be the cream of the crop for quilt shows. (www.merleburl.com)
Prior to the regular Community High School Board of Education meeting Tuesday, November 17, 2020, there was a public hearing on filing a waiver for Drivers Education fees. Member Gary Saake explained, “This is an extension of a previous waiver so that we can charge more than the statutory amount. The waiver allows us to charge $30 a /student for the behind the wheel portion. Even at $300, the costs of operating the program are subsidized by general revenue.” During the regular meeting, the board approved the submission of the waiver application.
Also approved was the 2020 Tax Levy for property taxes collected in 2021. The property tax levy approved was $28,619, =204, which includes the bonds. Saake explained, “Because a ‘balloon levy’ was used to capture any difference between the assessor’s preliminary new construction numbers and final ones, and 50 percent tax abatements are in place for new construction in the business park, we anticipate receiving about $400,000 less than the levied amount. The Consumer Price Index for 2019, which is used to calculate the levy was 2.3 percent. The actual amount taxed for an individual property is based on the assessment of the taxpayer’s property related to the value of all other properties.”
Utilizing Sourcewell Purchasing Cooperative through Russo Power Equipment in Schiller Park, the Board approved the purchase of Kubota RTV1100C tractor plow in the amount of $29,189.98.
The Board adopted changes to the 2020-21 School Calendar of which more most likely will occur.
West Chicago Community High School Honors Biology teachers Alexandra Day and Brianne Ferreiro hosted two voluntary 45 minute sessions on how to write a strong Claim, Evidence, Reasoning Science paper. Little did the students who opted to sign up know that the two teachers planned on using the dissection of a shark and a rat to provide the basis for that practice CER paper. Students worked in groups to find the digestive systems of both animals so that each could compare/contrast the systems using a CER paper. Students were definitely surprised as many commented that the initial “cutting open each to look inside” was the definite highlight of the day. (www.merleburl.com)
Wheaton Academy student Emma Froeschke placed as first chair cellist in the Illinois Music Education Association’s District 9 Orchestra. Selected as members of the ILMEA District 9 Honors Ensembles for Choir were Isabella Brown, Stephen Chen, Anna Jones, Kenna Tolman and Michal Tolman. Selected for Band was Jillian Reid. (www.merleburl.com)
At the Monday, November 16, 2020, meeting, City Council approved a three year contract for Citywide Monthly Brush Collection Program in the annual amount of $96,775 with Kramer Tree Specialists.
Also approved was a contract for the 2021 Parkway Tree Planting Program in the amount of $40,430 with Access Group of Wauconda.
Council approved a contract for the 2021 Janitorial Services of eight City-owned and maintenance facilities in the amount of $67,181 to Italian US Midwest, LLC of St. Louis, Missouri.
There was approval of a three year contract for Cemetery Sexton Services in the yearly amount of $80,000 with Cemetery Management (John B. Reynolds). This covers both Glen Oak and Oakwood cemeteries.
Council approved the transfer of ownership of Oak Drive Right-Of-Way to DuPage County. The Item Summary stated that for several years the City has maintained the Oak Drive right-of-way, between Diversey Parkway and Route 59 (dedicated as public right-of-way since 1953). The City has no utilities here and there is no reason to continue to own it.
Approved were four contracts for supplies used at the Water Treatment Plan; all were for the Fiscal Year 2021. One was for Liquid Sodium Hypochlorite for the amount of $137.41 a ton delivered and not to exceed $54.964 to Olin Products & Vinyls of Downers Grove. Another was for Rotary Hydrated Lime for the amount of $199 a ton delivered and not to exceed $378.100 to Mississippi Lime Company of St. Louis, Missouri. One was for Liquid Carbon Dioxide for the amount of $125 a ton delivered and not to exceed $27,500 to McCARB of Elgin. Another was for Dry Anionic Polymer for the amount of 1.72 a pound delivered and not to exceed $20,640 to Polydyne, Inc. of Riceboro, Georgia.
Council approved an Intergovernmental agreement with the West Chicago Fire Protection District For the property at 2015 Smith Road. The Item Summary states, This property “is a parcel that should have been owned by the WCFPD, as it was granted to it as the land donation requirement for the Cornerstone Lakes Subdivision. Via a recording error, it remained the City’s since 2001 and the city has been maintaining it since then. It would be appropriate for the Fire District to get the proceeds from this sale, less all costs incurred by the City since its been in our possession (about $15.000)”. Council then approved of the sale of the property for the amount of $65,000 to Fatmir Dzabiri.
Also approved was the sale of the property at 308 West Stimmel Street for the amount of $13,500 to Antonio and Maria Lopez. Another approval of a property sale was of two lots on Ann Street for the amount of $26,000 to Kathleen Brown.
Council approved a Zoning Code Text Amendment that allows resumption of a legal non conforming use that has been discontinued for a period of 12 consecutive months or longer. This helps bring about the return of the Cascade theater property. With this passage, the Public Hearings regarding special use and operation of a Drive-in theater continue at the next Plan Commission/Zoning Board of Appeals meeting Tuesday, December 1, 2020.
Some members of West Chicago Elementary School District 33 donated their time to provide contactless meal drop-off to families in West Chicago. International Christian Fellowship Church donated 55 turkeys and bags full of items for families to enjoy a Thanksgiving meal. (www.merleburl.com)
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