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Joe's Saloon has been remade into Martini's and Nick's. (Supplied photos)

“It’s a Wonderful Life” bars come to Joe’s Saloon in Brookfield

By Steve Metsch Don’t be surprised if you see Clarence the Angel, George Bailey or Mister Potter at Joe’s Saloon in Brookfield on Dec. 3 and 4. People dressed like those and other characters from the holiday movie “It’s a Wonderful Life” will likely be there tipping back a few flaming rum punches. For the…

Dan Polk said there is a perception that his village is not business friendly. (Photo by Jeff Vorva)

Palos Park looks to improve its image in the business world

By Jeff Vorva Whether the Village of Palos Park allows gaming machines in town or not, it has a problem it wants to address. The village needs to improve its image to the business community. “I think that Palos Park traditionally, for want of a better term, has not particularly been business-friendly,” Commissioner Dan Polk…

Lyons Mayor Christopher Getty presents an artist’s drawing to Fire Chief Gordon Nord, Jr. (Photos by Steve Metsch)

Lyons dedicates memorial to firefighters on 125th anniversary

By Steve Metsch The more than 500 men and women – many of them volunteers – who have worked for the Lyons Fire Department over the past 125 years will not be forgotten. A red-brick memorial topped with a firefighter’s helmet and sitting outside the fire station, 4043 Joliet Ave., was dedicated on Nov. 28.…

Sandburg’s Chamber Choir dresses festively at the holiday parade in Orland Park. (Photos by Jeff Vorva)

Parade adds fun to Orland Park holiday festival

By Jeff Vorva Every year, the Village of Orland Park tries to make its holiday celebration bigger and better. This year, officials took on the ambitious project of hosting a parade and more than 30 units stepped off on 151st Street and marched along Ravinia Avenue until they reached Village Hall, the site of various…

As always, the Man in Red is the star of the show at the annual Christmas tree lighting at Wentworth Park, much to the delight of children of all ages. --File photo

Christmas calendar fills up quickly

By Joan Hadac Your correspondent in Clearing and Garfield Ridge (708) 496-0265 • [email protected] Last week, I wrote about two fun Yuletide events sponsored by our friends at the Garfield Ridge Chamber of Commerce: Snack With Santa and the first-ever Archer Avenue Cookie Walk. This week, I’ll write about a few more wonderful things happening right…

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Roadrunner to become a Badger

 

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A quarter century of crime prevention

Celebrating a quarter century of crime prevention in Police Beat 812 (Clearing, west of Central Avenue), 23rd Ward Ald. Silvana Tabares (second from left) presents a City Council resolution to leading members of the Clearing Night Force, at a recent CAPS meeting. Pictured with the alderman are (from left) key CNF members John Kurtovitch, Marie…

A moment after ground was broken and tossed, smiles broke out among dignitaries celebrating PODER’s coming renovation. A computer-generated video offering a glimpse of what the new facility will look like is posted at southwestregionalpublishing.com. --Photo courtesy of Jorge Garza Norrick/JorgeTookYourPicture.com

New life for old city building

New PODER HQ to serve immigrants By Tim Hadac Ceremonial ground was broken on the west end of Gage Park last week to mark the coming renovation of a 94-year-old City of Chicago building and creation what is billed as Chicago’s first immigrant integration and job center. A lineup of political and business muscle…

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Sanad feeds the hungry in Chicago Lawn

More than a thousand served By Kathy Headley Have faith. Keep going. It will all work out. That was the advice Fatima Abu Eid, director of Sanad Social Services, gave to her daughter Aber, who runs the Sanad Food Pantry, upon being notified that the Greater Chicago Food Depository would indeed be giving them hundreds…

Chicago Police Department

Robbery crew hits Back of the Yards

From staff reports A cluster of robberies in Back of the Yards has promoted police to issue a community alert. Police said the bandits “approach the victims in or near the alley and demand property. Offenders then would flee in dark colored SUV or a red vehicle.” Crime scenes include: 1700 block of West 49th…

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Hug for a hero

CPD Officer Carlos Yanez Jr. (dark shirt) receives a welcoming hug from Fraternal Order of Police Lodge 7 President John Catanzara, as Yanez’s family and friends shed tears of joy and applaud. Yanez walked into FOP Lodge 7 headquarters to pay a visit to his union brothers and sisters. Back in August, Yanez was shot…

Ray Stetz, of La Grange, talks with Township of Lyons Assessor Patrick Hynes (right) about possible property tax exemptions. (Photos by Steve Metsch)

Township residents talk taxes with elected officials

By Steve Metsch Marek Gil, like many residents, has questions about his property taxes. Plenty of questions. Gil owns two properties, one in Hickory Hills and one in Justice. Asked if his taxes are too high, Gil replied: “Of course.” Gil, who resides in Justice, was among a group of residents who attended the “Coffee…

Summit village officials and employees stand in front of this year's Christmas Tree. (Photos by Carol McGowan)

Summit lights village Christmas Tree

By Carol McGowan Nearly 50 people were on hand November 18 as the Village of Summit Christmas tree was lit. It was a true sign of the holidays to come, as the crowd gathered by the tree and sang a Christmas carol while sipping on hot chocolate and coffee. It was one of the first…

Orland Park Mayor Keith Pekau announces his intention to run for the 6th Congressional District. (Photo by Jeff Vorva)

Pekau joins crowded Republican field in 6th Congressional District

By Jeff Vorva In what could be one of the most interesting and heated congressional races in the state in 2022, Orland Park Mayor Keith Pekau announced Monday he is planning on running in the new 6th Congressional District. He will be running as a Republican and, so far, will battle energy consultant Niki Conforti in the…

Palos Park's Denise Cowan is one of four citizens to object to the village considering video gaming. (Photo by Jeff Vorva)

Palos Park delays gaming vote again

By Jeff Vorva Someone should send the mayor of Palos Park some Alka-Seltzer. For the third meeting in a row, the Palos Park Village Council did not take any action on bringing gaming machines to town. Mayor John Mahoney and Commissioner Dan Polk are leaning in favor of it to help out the local businesses…

Madelyn and Zachary Rodrigues are proud to hold an annual toy drive benefiting patients at Comer Children's Hospital at the University of Chicago. (Supplied photos)

Teen helps others despite brittle bone disease

Family toy drive benefits Comer Children’s Hospital By Kelly White Early on in her life, Madelyn Rodrigues was diagnosed with Osteogeneis Imperfects, a brittle bone disease that has already resulted in more than 70 bone fractures in her 14 years of life. As a freshman at Illinois Lutheran High School in Crete, Madelyn’s inner strength…

The late CPD Officer Ella French.

‘They tried to taint Ella’s legacy’

Aldermen furious with mayor, COPA chief By Tim Hadac The three aldermen representing Clearing and Garfield Ridge are among 20 City Council members opposing the appointment of Andrea Kersten as the next Chief Administrator of Civilian Office of Police Accountability. Kersten, the current interim chief of COPA, came under fire recently for releasing a report…

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Roadrunners are state volleyball champs

Snack With Santa is an event founded by longtime Garfield Ridge Chamber of Commerce President Mary Ann Dybala near 40 years ago. It offers a bit of Christmas cheer for children and underscores the local business community’s commitment to the neighborhood. --File photo

Holiday warmth is straight ahead

By Joan Hadac Your correspondent in Clearing and Garfield Ridge (708) 496-0265 • [email protected] Tomorrow is Thanksgiving Day, my favorite holiday of the year. I look forward to it because it’s all about family, whether it’s family of blood or heart or both. People actually slow down and catch up with each other. It’s not about…

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Pushback over ‘conscience’ law change

Measure would close vax loophole By Peter Hancock Capitol News Illinois and Tim Hadac A number of Southwest Siders are pushing back against a new state law designed to clear the way for employers to enforce vaccination, testing and other mitigation measures to prevent the spread of COVID-19. The measure, Senate Bill 1169, amends the Illinois…

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Illinois News

Oral arguments to begin Tuesday in redistricting cases

Oral arguments to begin Tuesday in redistricting cases

By PETER HANCOCK Capitol News Illinois [email protected] SPRINGFIELD – A three-judge federal court panel in Chicago will begin hearing oral arguments Tuesday in three cases that could determine the makeup of state legislative maps in the Chicago area and Metro East region for the next 10 years. The panel announced during a status hearing Friday…

Millions of dollars of stolen goods recovered in ‘organized retail crime’ bust, AG says

Millions of dollars of stolen goods recovered in ‘organized retail crime’ bust, AG says

By JERRY NOWICKI Capitol News Illinois [email protected] SPRINGFIELD – An unrelated arrest by the Chicago Police Department on Sunday led to a state task force this week seizing millions of dollars’ worth of goods stolen from retailers in what Attorney General Kwame Raoul described as an organized retail crime operation. Raoul announced the raid in…

Cahokia Mounds historic site offers augmented reality tours

Cahokia Mounds historic site offers augmented reality tours

By BETH HUNDSDORFER Capitol News Illinois [email protected] There’s a new way to explore an ancient place in Illinois. Visitors of Cahokia Mounds State Historic Site can try experiencing it in “augmented reality,” or AR, to see the Grand Plaza as it appeared 1,000 years ago, the Palisade as it once stood and the exterior and…

CAPITOL RECAP: Governor announces $94 million in airport grants

CAPITOL RECAP: Governor announces $94 million in airport grants

By CAPITOL NEWS ILLINOIS SPRINGFIELD – Nearly 100 airports across Illinois will receive state funding in the coming months for projects ranging from new runways and road relocations to the purchase of mowers and snow removal equipment. The money comes from the $45 billion Rebuild Illinois capital infrastructure plan which passed the General Assembly and…

State to distribute $94 million to 96 airports through Rebuild Illinois plan

State to distribute $94 million to 96 airports through Rebuild Illinois plan

By JERRY NOWICKI Capitol News Illinois [email protected] SPRINGFIELD – Nearly 100 airports across Illinois will receive state funding in the coming months for projects ranging from new runways and road relocations to the purchase of mowers and snow removal equipment. The money comes from the $45 billion Rebuild Illinois capital infrastructure plan which passed the…

Hundsdorfer brings investigative experience to Capitol News Illinois reporting team

Hundsdorfer brings investigative experience to Capitol News Illinois reporting team

By CAPITOL NEWS ILLINOIS SPRINGFIELD – Capitol News Illinois on Monday welcomed Beth Hundsdorfer to its full-time reporting staff. Hundsdorfer is a veteran investigative reporter who spent nearly 20 years at the Belleville News-Democrat, 13 of which were spent on the investigative beat. She also covered cops and courts. Her investigative journalism included work on…

Democrats deny racial gerrymandering in legislative maps

Democrats deny racial gerrymandering in legislative maps

By PETER HANCOCK Capitol News Illinois [email protected] SPRINGFIELD – Lawyers for the General Assembly’s Democratic leaders filed documents in federal court Wednesday denying that newly drawn state legislative district maps amount to racial gerrymandering, instead accusing the plaintiffs in the three lawsuits of trying to use race to redraw districts for their own purposes. Wednesday’s…

House Democratic Leader Greg Harris announces retirement plans

House Democratic Leader Greg Harris announces retirement plans

By PETER HANCOCK Capitol News Illinois [email protected] SPRINGFIELD – Illinois House Democratic Leader Greg Harris said Monday he will not seek reelection in 2022 and will step down from the General Assembly after eight terms in office. Harris, 66, of Chicago, is the first openly LGBTQ legislative leader in Illinois history who spent much of…

Niemerg says he wants to ‘speak up’ for downstate Illinois

Niemerg says he wants to ‘speak up’ for downstate Illinois

By ANDREW ADAMS For Capitol News Illinois SPRINGFIELD – Republican state Rep. Adam Niemerg grew up in a family that cared about politics, so it felt like a natural step for him when he ran his first campaign to get a seat in the House of Representatives in 2020. “There’s a lot of things that…

Niemerg says he wants to ‘speak up’ for downstate Illinois

Niemerg says he wants to ‘speak up’ for downstate Illinois

By ANDREW ADAMS For Capitol News Illinois SPRINGFIELD – Republican state Rep. Adam Niemerg grew up in a family that cared about politics, so it felt like a natural step for him when he ran his first campaign to get a seat in the House of Representatives in 2020. “There’s a lot of things that…

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