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Eighth-graders from Palos Heights participated in Tuesday night’s mock city council meeting. (Photos by Jeff Vorva)

Eighth-graders from Palos Heights participated in Tuesday night’s mock city council meeting. (Photos by Jeff Vorva)

No casino at Lake Katherine — eighth-graders have fun at mock city council meeting

By Jeff Vorva

To be clear, the City of Palos Heights legal team is not investigating the feasibility of putting a casino on the banks on the Cal Sag Channel at Lake Katherine.

Nor did the city approve a skateboard park.

Nor an outdoor hockey rink.

Nor a licensed daycare center for reindeer.

Nor is the city increasing the traffic fines for distracted drivers from $50 and $250 to $200 and $500.

All of that fake – and fun – news came out of City Hall Tuesday night during the yearly mock city council meeting prior to the regular meeting.

The mock meeting, sponsored by the Palos Heights Woman’s Club, gave area eighth-graders a chance to experience running a city council meeting and learn some of the ins and outs of local government.

This is the 42nd running of the event, which ran consecutively from 1979-2019 before COVID-19 spoiled the streak in 2020. Now it’s back – fake news and all.

“It’s a great program – both of my kids [Scott and Lynn] were in it,” Mayor Bob Straz said. “Now my son is 42 and my daughter is 40.”

MAYOR AND MAYOR FOR A DAY

Mayor Bob Straz helps Mayor for a Day Eamon Gayduk during Tuesday’s mock city council meeting at City Hall.

Winning the Mayor for a Day honor was Eamon Gayduk.

Calya Prohaska was the city clerk. Elise Alligood handled the city treasurer duties and Omar Regab acted as city attorney.

Aldermen were Harrison Stroobosscher, Mark Coffey, Quinn Arundel, Abigail Beach, Ellen Seracini, Gianna Kent, Terry Dougherty and Sara Burzycki.

Not all of the information at the 20-minute meeting was false. One young alderman said the city’s Channel 4 facilities were recently toured by representatives from University Park, Oak Forest, Matteson and Chicago Ridge to get ideas for their community access channels.

Another correct report was that Kris Kringle Market will take place on Dec. 3-4 and there will be 75 vendors present.

Also, there was a true announcement about the Touch-a-Truck and Treat event from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. on Oct. 28 at the Palos Heights Pool parking lot. Police, fire and construction vehicles will be on display and there will be plenty of candy handed out.

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