The holiday season is quickly approaching, and, as in the past, the giving spirit of the community abounds as various organizations sponsor projects to help those less fortunate.
Wayne Township once again offers the “Adopt-A-Family” program. Businesses, persons and organizations purchase a meal and a gift for each member of the family, new toys for children age 0 through 14 and gift cards for youths age 15 and up, plus senior citizens. Donations for holiday meals are needed. The cost is a $30 donation for a holiday meal for persons using the food pantry from the Northern Illinois Food Bank. Each boxed meal has a frozen turkey, side dishes, desserts and beverages for eight persons. “Gift cards and monetary donations are always welcome. These can help us meet the needs of most individuals and families,” said Juanita Martinez, General Assistance Director. “At this time, we have 200 families on the list.”
Martinez added the food pantry is always in need of non-perishable food items. “We also host a coat drive that is ongoing during the winter.” This includes hats, gloves, mittens and boots. For further information or to adopt a family, call Martinez at (630) 231-7173.
West Chicago Police Department sponsors Operation “Warm and Fuzzy” for winter clothing such as coats, scarves, mittens, gloves, hats and boots for those in need. It takes place through Wednesday, December 20, 2017. Persons can drop off new or gently used items in the specially decorated Christmas boxes at West Chicago Police Department, 325, Spencer Street; and Dunkin’ Donuts, 330 South Neltnor Boulevard and the ARC, 201 West National Street.
The West Chicago Lions Club holds a coat drive through Thursday, November 30, 2017. Drop off boxes are located at both Republic Bank locations, 101 Main Street and 105 West Roosevelt Road; City Hall, 475 Main Street; West Chicago Park District ARC, 201 West National Street; FNBC Bank & Trust, 600 East Washington Street: Water’s Edge Bible Church, 209 South Oakwood Street; Ball Horticultural Company, 622 Town Road; The UPS Store, 1879 North Neltnor Boulevard; Daniel and Associates Real Estate, 465 East Roosevelt Road; and Augustino’s Rock & Roll Deli and Grill, 300 N. North Avenue. New and slightly used, clean coats are needed for distribution to local families.
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 19, 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.
Winfield Township enters its 29th year of its “Adopt-A-Family” program. Working in conjunction with Neighborhood Food Pantries located on the Real Life Church property at 525 North Neltnor Boulevard, the township has 70 families enrolled; 38 already are adopted, leaving 32 to be adopted. All registrants are screened for eligibility according to Emergency Assistance guidelines. The “adoption” of a family involves providing a gift for each child and a $50 gift certificate for a holiday meal from a local area grocery store. “Donors can either deliver the gifts directly to the family or bring them to the office and the families can pick them up here,” explained General Assistance Director Claudia Gabrels. “Donations for holiday meals or gift cards for groceries are always welcome, and can be used throughout the year, if needed.” To make a donation or for more information, call Gabrels at (630) 231-3591, Monday through Friday.
First United Methodist Church of West Chicago, 603 East Washington Street, is the site for PADS. With the temperatures turning colder, many of the men guests at PADS guests are in need of gloves, stocking caps and large-size sweatpants for layering under regular clothing or for sleeping. The items do not need to be expensive as much of the cold weather clothing must be discarded, often donated to a resale operation, when the temperatures turn warmer. PADS guests must travel light as most walk, bike and take the train and are limited as to what they can carry around. Persons can drop off items between 9:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m. Tuesdays and Fridays. (www.merleburl.com)
AROUND AND ABOUT
St. Mary’s Parish, 140 North Oakwood Avenue, holds a groundbreaking service for its new church building, Sunday, November 26, 2017. The benediction is at 2:45 p.m.; then members singing litanies proceed to the site of the new church, where the ground is blessed and a cross is planted in the location of the sanctuary.
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 24, 2017, through Tuesday, January 19, 2018. The offer is open to residents, businesses, clubs, churches and organizations. Drop-off locations are City Hall, 475 Main Street; First United Methodist Church of West Chicago, 643 East Washington Street; Murphy Ace Hardware, 319 South Neltnor Boulevard; Water Treatment Plant, 1400 West Hawthorne Lane; West Chicago Public Library District, 118 West Washington Street; and the ARC Center, 201 West National Street.
The West Chicago Environmental Commission coordinates the program with Elgin Recycling, which collects these items to strip and recycle for their copper and plastic parts. The company is a full service scrap metal business serving the area for more than 30 years. In both 2015 and 2016, 602 pounds were collected.
With the last Saturday of the month falling during the Thanksgiving holiday weekend, Coffee with the Mayor for the month of November is cancelled.
To accommodate those who deep fry turkeys for Thanksgiving dinner, Winfield Township has a full week for used vegetable oil drop off. It is from 7:00 to 3:00 a.m. Monday through Friday, November 27, through Friday, December 1, 2017, at the Township Road facility, 30W575 Roosevelt Road. Persons should put the used oil in a plastic container. For further information, call the township road office at (630) 231-8850.
The last week for free leaf pick up begins Monday, November 27, and ends Friday, December 1, 2017, on regularly scheduled garbage collection days. This also is the last week of yard waste collection for 2017.
Through its Relaxation Series, the West Chicago Public Library District presents four programs in November. The third one, “Coloring for Relaxation,” takes place at 6:30 a.m. Tuesday, November 28, 2017, in the main meeting room 118 West Washington Street. The library provides the coloring supplies or persons can bring their own materials. Also music and refreshments are provided. Call the adult services department at (630) 231-1552, extension 4 to make a reservation.
Gardenworks Project has a goal of raising $4,000 in donations Tuesday, November 28, 2017, which is Giving Day, a national day of giving. This sum would provide 15 gardens to food-insecure families in DuPage County. In 2017 the organization built 87 gardens and wants to match or exceed that number in 2018. To make a donation, visit the website www.gardenworksproject.org/, under Giving.
For the sixth year, WeGo Drama and Barnes and Noble present an evening of entertainment as a fundraiser for the club. It takes place from 4:00 to 9:00 p.m. Wednesday, November 29, 2017, at the store located in the Geneva Commons, 102 Commons Drive. Events include Storytelling and music, something for the entire family. Concurrent with this is the Book Fair with a percentage of purchases benefitting the drama club. The offer is good from 9:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m.
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, November 29, 2017, 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.
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. “Uploading Pictures to Facebook” class is at 1:00 p.m. Wednesday, November 29. “Attaching Pictures to Email or Texts” class is at 2:00 p.m. Friday, December 1.
Residents may see fuzzy-faced police officers in November as some members of the West Chicago Police Department are currently participating in the No Shave November campaign to heighten awareness for cancer research. Those participating donated $25 to the campaign to forego shaving for the month as approved by Chief Mike Uplegger. Anyone wishing to donate to the No Shave November campaign can make their donation in person or by mail to West Chicago Police Department, 325 Spencer Street, West Chicago, IL 60185. Checks should be made payable to No-Shave November. Fraternal Order of Police Lodge 85 will match monies raised by police officers and contributions made by the community up to $500.
Painting parties are quite popular and now Hawthorne’s Backyard Bar & Grill, 1200 West Hawthorne Lane, offers a Painting and Potables event from 6:30 to 9:00 p.m. every other Thursday this fall and winter. The charge is $36, which includes the supplies. Local artist Kelley Cappell leads the step-by-step instruction for the paintings. The next event, landscape painting, is November 30, 2017. To make a reservation visit the website www.hawthornesbackyard.com/upcoming-events.
WeGo Wildcats Special Olympics basketball team plays a fifteen-minute pick-up game against St. Charles East before the Chicago Bulls Game Friday, December 1, 2017, at United Center, 1901 West Madison Street in Chicago. The game starts at 6:30 p.m. followed by the Bulls game at 7:000 p.m. Club president Dave Hempe has tickets for Level 300 at the cost of $25 per ticket. To purchase tickets email Hempe at firstname.lastname@example.org.
West Chicago Public Library, 118 West Washington Street, hosts its annual Holiday Cheer Open House from 5:00 to 9:00 p.m. Friday, December 1, 2017. Musical entertainment, family activities and refreshments create holiday cheer.
“Small Gifts of Art’ is the exhibit at Gallery 200, 103 West Washington Street, for the month of December. The artwork of the 17-featured artists is perfect for holiday gifts, plus reasonably priced. The artists’ reception is from 6:00 to 9:00 p.m. Friday, December 1, 2017.
Gift items include stocking stuffers, puppets, tote bags, greeting cards, unique Jewelry ornaments, candleholders, knit items, ceramic pieces, functional fused glass art, dream catchers, wooden toys and trains, fabric art paintings and drawings.
Gallery hours are from noon to 8:00 p.m. Thursday and Friday, and from noon to 4:00 p.m. Saturday and Sunday.
Registration for the City of West Chicago’s 2017 Frosty Fest 5K Run/Walk is open online at www.raceroster.com/14012. The event takes place Saturday, December 2, 2017, starting in Turner Court. Packet pick-up and registration is at 7:30 p.m. and the race begins at 8:30 a.m. The free Kids Fun Walk for children age 10 and under begins at approximately 9:30 a.m. Age groups are 11 to 14, 15 to 19, 20 to 29, 30 to 39, 40 to 49, 50 to 59, 60 to 69 and 70 and over. The top three overall male and female participants receive awards, plus the top three male and female in each age category receive awards. The fee is $25 for residents, $30 for non-residents, $10 for students. Registration deadline is Friday, December 1. Kids Fun Run participants receive a Finisher’s ribbon. For further information, call Special Events Coordinator Bethany Bayci at (630) 293-2200, extension 176 or email email@example.com.
St. Andrew Lutheran Church, 155 North Prince Crossing Road, holds its annual Cookie Bazaar from 9:00 to 11:00 a.m. Saturday, December 2, 2017. The cost is $9 for a one-pound box and $17 for a two-pound box of cookies. A portion of the proceeds benefits Neighborhood Food Pantry at on the campus of Real Life Church, 525 North Neltnor Boulevard. For further information, call the church office at (630) 231-3787.
FNBC Bank & Trust, 600 East Washington Street, hosts Pictures with Santa from 10:00 a.m. to noon Saturday, December 2, 2017. Treats are served.
The Station, the youth group at First United Methodist Church of West Chicago, hosts its fourth annual Christmas Candy Cottage Workshop from 1:00 to 3:00 p.m. Saturday, December 2, 2017, at the church, 643 East Washington Street. Families make a “house” to take home. The $10 charge per house includes graham crackers, frosting and candy. For further information, call the church at (630) 231-3344 or visit www.firstumcucc.org. (www.merleburl.com)
Frosty Fest is from 4:00 to 7:00 p.m. Saturday, December 2, 2017, in the historic downtown district. Activities include the procession, official community tree lighting ceremony, visits with Santa and Mrs. Claus, horse-drawn wagon rides, reindeer, crafts, entertainment, ice sculpture carving and refreshments. (www.merleburl.com)
Sincere sympathy is extended to the family of Neal B. Ebert, who at the age of 57 passed away Sunday, November 12, 2017.
Deepest sympathy is expressed to the family of Clement “Clem” Campbell, who at the age of 81 passed away, Thursday, November 16, 2017.
Sincere sympathy is extended to the family of Winifred “Wini” Thomassen, who at the age of 98 passed away Monday, November 13, 2017.
Deepest sympathy is expressed to the family of Alvelina Valdez De Servin, who at the age of 61 passed away Friday, November 17, 2017.
Treasures of the Caribbean, a Cuban/Puerto Rican restaurant, recently opened its doors at 960 East Roosevelt Road. The owners are Pablo and Gloria Araujo. He is from Cuba. She was born in Mexico and raised in Puerto Rico. Ward 6 Alderman George Garcia and his wife Maria dined there Friday, November 10, 2017. George, who is from Cuba, said, “I had the traditional Cuban sandwich and the chicken croquettes with mild pimento sauce and both were good. Maria had the steak and grilled onion sandwich, which was really good.” He added, “It is an ethnic family cooking establishment just getting started and working out their kinks. It is a welcome addition to West Chicago. It has great potential. We intend to work through the menu over time”.
Madelyn Brotnow, a senior at West Chicago Community High School, is the Female Athlete of the 2017 Fall Season. As a multi-sport athlete she participated in volleyball, basketball, and track in her freshman year, and ran cross country and played basketball the last three years. She has been an individual sectional qualifier each year in cross country, and was named academic all-conference. Brotnow served on Student Council and as a Student Ambassador, and is a member of the Health Occupations of America club. She has been on High Honor Roll every semester, plus is a member of the National Honor Society and Foreign Language Society. Upon graduation, she plans to attend a university, continuing on to graduate school to become a physician’s assistant. (www.merleburl.com)
Jason Gimre and Arturo Marquez, seniors at West Chicago Community High School, are the Male Athletes of the 2017 Fall Season.
Gimre is a multi-sport athlete, competing in golf, basketball and baseball. For the past three years, he was named all-conference in golf. In his sophomore year, he was part of the varsity boys basketball Upstate Eight Conference championship team.
He has been on High Honor Roll every semester and is a member of National Honor Society and the Foreign Language Honor Society. Gimre is a member of Business Professionals of America. Upon graduation, he plans to attend Taylor University in Upland, Indiana or Biola University in La Mirada, California.
Marquez played soccer all four years, earning a varsity berth beginning in his sophomore year, and is the team captain. He is a member WCCHS 2017 Regional Championship team. He was named all-conference and all-sectional, named to the Daily Herald’s DuPage County All-Area Soccer Team, and to the Joe Novy Invitational all-tourney team.
Upon graduation, Marquez plans to attend a university to major in kinesiology or exercise science and play soccer. (www.merleburl.com)
The official total raised at the Sixth Annual Chili for a Cure Cook off, organized by the Illinois Association of Firefighters Local 3970, is $12,300. This is $1,100 above any amount raised in the past.
Faith Community Church welcomes two interim pastors. Reverend Nick Perrin, the senior interim pastor, is ordained in the Presbyterian Church in America and is the Franklin S, Dyrness Chair of the Biblical Studies at Wheaton Graduate School. Reverend Rhett Austin, associate interim pastor, recently returned from serving as an instructor at L’Abri Fellowship, a Christian study center in Huemoz, Switzerland. He holds a degree in pastoral ministry from Southeastern Bible College in Birmingham, Alabama and degrees in theology and biblical exegesis from Wheaton Graduate School. The previous pastor, Reverend Shane Sterk, resigned in August 2017 to take a position as pastor at Hudsonville Reformed Church in Hudsonville, Michigan.
At the meeting Tuesday, November 14, 2017, the Community High School District 94 Board of Education passed the 2017 property tax levy for taxes to be collected in 2018. It includes a 2.1 percent increase, based on the December 2016 Cost of Living Index, plus the inclusion of the estimates of the Winfield Township assessor on the new construction within the district. Board president Gary Saake said, “While we acknowledge that property taxes are a hot-button subject in Illinois, it’s important to note that our state funding is expected to decrease this fiscal year due to lawmakers decision to divert a sizable share of the Corporate Personal Property Replacement Tax (CPPRT) funding of $260,000 in the state budget passed in July. We have taken, and will continue to take, steps to reduce and control costs where we can without impacting student opportunities, however we’re subject to the same inflationary increases in costs for products and services as everyone else.”
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