After 28 years with the West Chicago Park District, Jesse Felix, Superintendent of Projects & Outreach, is retiring, effective Thursday, March 29, 2018. In 1990, he joined the staff of the West Chicago Park District as Superintendent of Parks. His challenge then was a smaller staff and outdated equipment. Remaining fiscally responsible, Felix began pursuing used equipment to meet the needs of a growing district. Even today, some of that equipment still is in use to maintain the district’s 11 parks and more than 400 acres of open space.
Among his many achievements, Felix has several projects that are meaningful to him. One is the creation of a trail system that connects residents with nature and adds to the landscape of the parks. Another project, in particular, came about because of the major storm on July 1, 2012, that heavily affected the trees in Reed-Keppler Park. With the loss of the mature trees, he worked with arborists to plan and plant a variety of trees, and it now is regarded as a level one arboretum. He assisted with the utilization from the trees lost in the storm and to incorporate them as furniture accents in the ARC Center. This gave students of an Architecture and Furniture class at the Illinois Institute of Technology the opportunity to create more than 50 pieces of artwork. It also was the inspiration of the children’s book, “The Playground Tree” by Jeanette Joy, former West Chicago resident and employee of the park district. Felix planted more than 1,000 trees in his 28 years at the park district.
Felix is the recipient of the Illinois Park and Recreation Chairman’s Award, Professional of the Year Award, and served as Director for the Parks and Natural Resource Section of IPRA. He also served on the Midwest Institute of Park Executives Board as a board member and President and received the President’s Award and Professional of the Year twice. He supported and worked with the Morton Arboretum on the Chicago Regional Tree Initiative, taught horticulture at the College of DuPage and is an active Treekeeper with Openlands.
At the Monday, March 19, City Council meeting, Mayor Ruben Pineda read the proclamation honoring Felix. After receiving a standing ovation, Felix said, “It has been a great run…I love this community. The people and staff have been responsive and are like family.”
A Farewell Social takes place from 4:00 to 8:00 p.m. Thursday, March 29, 2018, at Hawthorne’s Backyard & Grill, 1200 West Hawthorne Lane. It is open to the public. (www.merleburl.com)
AROUND AND ABOUT
The West Chicago Garden Club meeting is Thursday, March 22, 2018, at Faith Community Church, 910 Main Street. Social time is at 6:45 p.m., short business meeting at 7:00 p.m. followed by the program at 7:15 p.m. Wally Schmidtke presents “How to Wake Up Your Garden.” He is the garden center manager at Pesche’s Flower Shop, Garden Center, Greenhouses and Nursery in Des Plaines.
His presentation includes managing perennials and woody ornamentals, prepping vegetable and herb gardens, seed starting, getting the most out of container gardens and tomato tips. He has contributed to the “Ask a Master Gardener” and “Tremendous Tomato Tips” in the “Daily Herald,” plus was “Dr. Wally’ on the Mike Nowak Radio Show. Schmidtke is the recipient of the University of Illinois Master Gardener teamwork award for raising an organic vegetable garden and hosting workshops for the “Plant a Row for the Hungry” program.
West Chicago Elementary School District Board of Education meeting is at 7:00 p.m. Thursday, March 22, 2018, rescheduled from March 15.
In partnership with Cantigny Park, the League of Women Voters of Wheaton hosts a “Drinks and Discussion” event Thursday, March 22, 2018, in the McCormick House at Cantigny, 1S151 Winfield Road in Wheaton. Social time is at 6:30 p.m., program at 7:00 p.m., followed by question and answer session. Attendees socialize and discuss the topic for the evening, “Is the ERA dead? Does gender still matter in politics.” Michelle Fadeley, president of the Illinois chapter of the National Organization for Women, speaks on the status and future of the Equal Rights Amendment in Illinois. A cash bar is available; complimentary coffee and dessert are served. Registration is required for the free program. To register visit www.wheatonlwvil.org.
League of Women Voters of Wheaton 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.
First United Methodist Church of West Chicago, 643 East Washington Street, hosts a free Bunny Breakfast “Eggstravaganza” from 9:00 to 11:00 a.m. Saturday, March 24, 2018. Crafts and games take place at activity centers inside with the egg hunt outdoors. Breakfast menu is pancakes, sausage and beverage.
West Chicago resident Tony Lage is in the cast of “The Miss Firecracker Contest” by the Glen Ellyn Village Theatre Guild. Performances are Fridays and Saturdays, March 23 through April 14, 2018. For further information, call (630) 469-8230 or visit the website www.villagetheatreguild.org.
Catholic Daughters of Americas Court 432, St. Mary’s parish, hosts its annual Spring Luncheon from 11:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. Saturday, March 24, 2018, 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 CDA 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. (www.merleburl.com)
Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 6791 holds a Raffle Blast Saturday, March 24, 2018, at the hall, 431 North Neltnor Boulevard. Lunch is served at noon, games start at 1:00 p.m. The charge is $50.
United Methodist and Congregation Women once again are baking pecan pies for Easter. The price is $7.50 for a half pie and $15 for a whole pie. Deadline for ordering is Sunday, March 25, 2018. Pies will be ready for pick up Friday, March 30, at the church, 643 East Washington Street. Proceeds benefit various missions. Call the church office at (630) 231-3344 for more information or to place an order. (www.merleburl.com)
The following is a schedule of Palm Sunday worship services planned by local churches for Sunday, March 25, 2018.
Community Fellowship Church, 28 W240 North Avenue, Palm Sunday services are at 9:00 and 11:00 a.m. During Holy Week from Monday, March 26, through Friday, March 30, prayer services are at 6:30 a.m.
Faith Community Church, 910 Main Street, Palm Sunday service is at 9:30 a.m.
First United Methodist Church of West Chicago, 643 East Washington Street, Palm Sunday service is at 10:00 a.m. Since the church is the PADS site Thursdays, the Supper and Seder service is at 6:00 p.m. Wednesday, March 28.
Nueva Esperanza (New Hope) Church, 910 Main Street, Palm Sunday service is at 11:15 a.m.
New Jerusalem House of Prayer Church, 100 Wycliffe Drive, Palm Sunday service is at 10:00 a.m. there is a Seder dinner at 7:00 p.m. Friday, March 30. Reservations are required by Sunday, March 25, and may be made by calling (630) 231-1775.
New Life Bilingual Church, 468 Ann Street, Palm Sunday service is at 10:30 a.m.
Real Life Church, 525 North Neltnor Avenue, Palm Sunday service is at 10:00 a.m.
Renewal Church PalmSunday service is at 10:00 a.m. Services are in the ARC center, 201 WestNational Street in Reed-Keppler Park.
St. Andrew Lutheran Church, 155 North Oakwood Avenue, Palm Sunday services are traditional at 8:00 a.m., contemporary at 10:00 a.m. and Spanish at noon. A dramatic presentation of “The Passion” narrative is at 11:30 a.m. in the great room. There is a contemplative prayer service at 7:00 p.m. Wednesday, March 28.
St. Mary’s Catholic Church, 140 North Oakwood Avenue, Palm Sunday observations take place during the regular Mass schedule.
St. Michael’s United Church of Christ, 400 West Washington Street, Palm/Passion Sunday service is at 9:30 a.m.
Trinity Lutheran Church, 331 George Street, Palm Sunday service is at 9:00 a.m. The Spanish service is at noon.
Water’s Edge Bible Church, 209 South Oakwood Avenue, Palm Sunday service is at 9:30 a.m.
The Friends of the West Chicago City Museum and West Chicago Historical Society host the Annual Tea Fundraiser at 1:00 p.m. Sunday, March 25, 2018, at American Legion Post 300, 123 Main Street. The ticket price of $20 per person or two for $35 includes a tea luncheon and entertainment. Ellie Carson presents “Speaking of Unmentionables: The Rise and Fall of Ladies Underwear.” The presentation unveils facts and exposes myths about women’s unmentionables, including stories from women past and present and their relationship with their foundations. Men are welcome to attend this event. Tickets are available at the City Museum, 132 Main Street, firstname.lastname@example.org, or call (630) 231-3376.
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. Beginner classes are at 1:00 p.m. Tuesdays. “Locating Pins on Pinterest” class is at 3:00 p.m. Tuesday, March 27, 2018.
Western DuPage Chamber of Commerce is planning a nine-day trip to China, which is open to members and non-members. The free informational meeting is at 6:00 p.m. Tuesday, March 27, 2018, at the ARC, 201 West National Street in Reed-Keppler Park. The trip is scheduled from Saturday, September 22, through Sunday, September 30 with a cost of $2,399. This includes roundtrip international and Chinese domestic airfare, four and five-star hotel accommodations, three meals each day, deluxe bus tours and entrance fees for attractions. To make a reservation for the orientation meeting, call the chamber office at (630) 231-3003. (www.merleburl.com)
Dance with Janet, a line dancing class, is from 7:00 to 10:00 p.m. Tuesday, March 27, 2018, at American Legion Post 300, 123 Main Street. The charge is $7 per person. The teacher is Janet Kruse, former instructor at Cadillac Ranch.
West Chicago Public LibraryDistrict in partnership with the City of West Chicago hosts a Small Business Series. Score: General Business Discussion Round Table is at 6:30 p.m. Wednesday, March 28, 2018, in the small conference 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.
West Chicago Public Library District hosts a Living History program at 7:00 p.m. Wednesday, March 28, 2018, in the main meeting room, 118 West Washington Street. The program is “Hamilton’s Women” 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 United States 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)
Breakfast with the Bunny, hosted by West Chicago Park District, is at 8:00 a.m. Saturday, March 31, 2018, in the ARC, 201 West National Street. It is geared for children age two years and older. Activities include pictures with the bunny, breakfast and story time. The cost is $10 for residents, $12 for non-residents and no charge for children age one and under. All attending must preregister by Monday, March 26, in person at the ARC or online at www.we-goprks.org.
American Legion Post 300, along with assistance from Sons of the American Legion, hosts its annual Egg Hunt at 10:00 a.m. SHARP Saturday, March 31, 2018, at Reed-Keppler Park, Arbor Avenue and National Street. The areas for children are divided into age groups of 1 and 2 year-olds, 3 and 4 year-olds, 5 and 6 year-olds and 7 and 8 year-olds. In each age grouping, there are prizes for two children, who find the “special” eggs. Children supply their own baskets for collecting the candy-filled eggs. The egg hunt is a community tradition that spans more than 50 years.
The City free leaf pickup is early again this year. It takes place during the week of Monday, April 2, through Friday, April 6, 2018, on regularly scheduled garbage pick up days. Leaves must be in “Kraft” bags. Stickers are not required. No other yard waste is to be mixed with the leaves.
Yard waste collection begins Monday, April 2, and ends Thursday, November 30, 2018, on regularly scheduled garbage pick up days. It must be placed in a “Kraft” yard waste bag with a Universal sticker attached or in 95-gallon yard waste cart.
Blooming Fest is from 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. Saturday, May 19, 2018, in historic downtown. The event includes the West Chicago Garden Club’s plant sale, craft sale, car show, art exhibit, children’s activities, music and food. Vendor registration packets are available on the City’s website, www.westchicago.org. The deadline is Thursday, April 19.
Sincere sympathy is extended to the family of Mary Louise Garber Dimas, who at the age of 90 passed away Saturday, March 10, 2018.
Deepest sympathy is expressed to the family of Evanne Scheiblein, who passed away Tuesday, March 13, 2018.
Sincere sympathy is extended to the family of Eleanor Linnea “Linn” Dierschow (Benson), who at the age of 89 passed away Wednesday, March 14, 2018.
Deepest sympathy is expressed to the family of James. E. Beifuss, Sr., who at the age of 83 passed away Friday, March 16, 2018.
In the evening Saturday, March 10, 2018, the West Chicago Fire Protection District was called to 29W221 Oak Knoll Road in unincorporated West Chicago for a reported home with a fire on the roof. Upon arrival, the fire companies found the two-story home with a large volume of smoke coming from the rear of the home and the roof area. A Box Alarm was called for additional units. The fire departments and districts assisting were Carol Stream, Winfield, Wheaton, Roselle, Bloomingdale, St. Charles, Warrenville, Hanover Park, York Center and Bartlett.
“The area does not have hydrants, but we plan for that fact by putting four tanker trucks, plus ours on the initial response. Initially with the four water tanker trucks, we had almost 10,000 gallons of water to attack the fire initially. We were fortunate to locate a hydrant in the next subdivision so we used a combination of tanker trucks initially and then used the hydrant. The tanker trucks come full of water and only a single tanker had to refill because we were able to locate the hydrant and connect enough hose to it. We used the water tanker as a backup water source, ” explained Tim Leidig, WCFPD Assistant Chief.
The fire was under control in sixty minutes; the last units left the scene around 9:15 p.m. There were no civilian injuries; one firefighter was treated for smoke inhalation. (www.merleburl.com)
The West Chicago Police Department again participated in the Coolest Event of the year—the Law Enforcement Torch Run Polar Plunge Sunday, March 4, 2018, at Loon Lake in Silver Springs State Park in Yorkville. Participants were Police Chief Mike Uplegger, team captain Robbi Peterson, his three children and a few of their close friends and police officer Jonathan Jones. “As a team we raised $1700….short of my $2,500 goal. However, we had a great time and it was a beautiful day to jump in a cold lake.” (www.merleburl.com)
West Chicago resident Judy Horsley, member of Gallery 200 and DuPage Art League, received first place award for her entry in the Still Life category of the Chicago Flower & Garden Show 2018 Photography Competition. (www.merleburl.com).
Twenty-three members of the Business Professionals of America at West Chicago Community High School attended the state conference Thursday, March 1, through Saturday, March 3, 2018, in Oak Brook. They competed in 15 events with 38 schools. Placing in the top 10 in their respective events were Michael Wagner, eighth in Fundamental Spreadsheet Applications; Sunny Patel, sixth in Interview Skills; Peter Nyugen, fifth in Fundamental Accounting; and Michael Sawicki, fifth in Personal Financial Management and first in Extemporaneous Speech. Nyugen and Sawicki are eligible for competition in May at the BPA National Leadership Conference. BPA sponsors are Mia Wirth and Donna Durbin. (www.merleburl.com)
Lt. Governor Evelyn Sanguinetti visited Currier School Wednesday, March14, 2018. She shared her journey to becoming Lt. Governor with fourth and fifth grade students, encouraging them to follow their passions, no matter what obstacles they encounter along the way. (www.merleburl.com)
Tegan Cook and Jason Gimre are the two male athletes for the winter 2018 season, recognized for their outstanding contributions to West Chicago Community High School.
Cook, a freshman, is a multi-sport athlete, participating in swimming and baseball. This season, he broke three 10-year old freshman records in the 100 meter butterfly, 100 meter backstroke and 50 meter freestyle at the Sectionals swim meet. Cook is on the High Honor Roll, plus he is involved in student clubs, including ROAR and WeGo Global.
Gimre, a senior, is a multi-sport athlete, competing in golf and basketball, and baseball as a freshman. He was selected as the Male Athlete of the 2017 fall season. In his sophomore year, he was part of the varsity boys basketball Upstate Eight Conference championship team. Gimre holds the all-time three point record in a single season (98) and has an all-time record of 181. He has been on the High Honor Roll every semester and is a member of National Honor Society and Foreign Language Honor Society. He also is a member of Business Professionals of America. After high school, Gimre plans to attend a four-year university to study Bio-PreMed, and plans to play basketball while in college. (www.merlburl.com)
Sierra Koenig, a senior, is the female athlete of the winter 2018 season. She has played volleyball, softball, cross-country and track, and basketball for all four years. She has been at the varsity level in basketball for there years and earned the MVP award this year. This year, she averaged 12.7 points per game and six rebounds per game. Koenig has been with the high Honor Roll or Honor Roll all four years and is a member of National Honor Society. She has served as a Student Ambassador. Upon graduation, Koenig plans to attend college. (www.merleburl.com)
La Michochana Premium, 285 West Roosevelt Road, is closed because Laundry King is expanding.
West Chicago resident Kate Dzierzankowski was highlighted in the Suburban Heroes feature in the Sunday, March 18, 2018, issue of the “Daily Herald.” She helped save the life of a man involved in a car accident outside her office in St. Charles.
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