Thank you, Karen Sala
By Joan Hadac
GSWNH Columnist At-Large
As we all know, longtime Gage Park correspondent Karen Sala has decided to conclude her time with this column.
Like every Greater Southwest News-Herald correspondent, Karen made the neighborhoods she served a better place. Thank you, Karen!
That said, the search now begins for a new Gage Park correspondent. The paper is looking for a person active in the community, is naturally curious and enjoys writing and passing along news—nothing big or earth-shattering, but rather the smaller stuff.
You know, the kind of news that won’t make the front page, but which is just as important, in its own way, as the big stuff: birthdays, anniversaries, birth announcements, engagements and weddings—plus news tidbits from our local schools, libraries, parks, churches, Scout troops, Little Leagues, senior citizen clubs, veterans’ posts, small businesses and such.
If you want to give it a try, send an email to [email protected] swnewsherald.com and the editor will respond and discuss things further.
In the meantime, here are a few bits of news from the neighborhood this week.
- Even though it’s barely February, this is the time to sign up your sons and daughters for baseball and softball.
The folks at Gage Park Baseball & Softball will host their first registration from 2 to 4 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 5 at Gage Park, 2415 W. 55th St.
At the same time, they will host winter workouts for kids age 14 and up.
All prospective players and their parents must show proof of vaccination in order to go into the field house, according to Chicago Park District regulations.
For details on the upcoming season, send an email to [email protected] or call/text Fonze Medina at (312) 330-3784.
- I see that the good folks at the Acero Schools have just finished celebrating National School Choice Week.
Acero has about 15 tuition-free public charter schools in the city. Here in Gage Park, they have Soto High School, 5025 S. St. Louis; Idár Elementary, 5050 S. Homan; and Tamayo Elementary, 5135 S. California. Acero also has nearby schools in Brighton Park and Archer Heights.
To learn about enrolling your child for the 2022-23 school year, visit aceroschools.org.
- Last I checked, there are still eight spots remaining if you want to take part in Family Game Night/Lotería at the Gage Park Branch Library, 2807 W. 55th St.
Game Night is set for 4 to 5 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 8. The activity is suitable for all ages, and there is no admission charge. For details, call Pedro Leon at (312) 747-0032.
- If you live in ZIP code 60632 (or 60608, 60609 or 60623), you and your family are offered a membership at no charge this year at the Rauner Family YMCA, 2700 S. Western.
Additionally, people living in those ZIP codes may enjoy complimentary use of all 13 of the YMCA of Metro Chicago’s local Y centers across the city and suburbs.
To find out how you may join, call (312) 667-7911 or come into the center and speak with a customer service representative.
- I see from the Chicago Park District website that there are still a few openings in the Mexican folkloric dance class at Gage Park, 2415 W. 55th St.
Class is in session from 6:30 to 8 p.m. weekdays now to March 18. There is no tuition charged, and classes are for boys and girls ages 5-12. For details, stop by the field house or call (312) 747-6147.
- Looking for a Valentine’s Day gift to “wow” your sweetheart? Look no further than Sara’s Sweet Studio. Check out the company’s Facebook page and see what owner Sara Leung has available. I’d post a photo here, but you really must see her creations in color. Personally, I like the Sweet Heart Box Option 6, but the other five look tempting, as well!
- If you’re a Gage Parker keeping your walk and steps shoveled and salted, thank you! By doing that, you’re helping your neighbors, not to mention Postal Service workers, delivery drivers, home healthcare workers and others.
If you live in the 15th Ward, you may even call Ald. Raymond Lopez’s office at (773) 823-1539 to ask for assistance. As best they can, they’ve been helping senior citizens and people with disabilities shovel out of the snow.
- Well, this week’s column was much longer than usual. I worked up a bit of an appetite pulling it together, so I’m going to order dinner from Hong Kong Restaurant, 2757 W. 55th St. I’ll probably order the Egg Foo Young. My younger daughter will go for the Pad Thai, and my husband usually can’t decide between orange chicken and sesame chicken.
Hong Kong Restaurant has been here in Gage Park since 1965. It’s a very nice, family-run business. Check them out at hongkongchi.com; and if you order delivery, please order directly from the restaurant to help them keep profits reasonable and enable them to avoid paying fees to third-party delivery services.
- Well folks, stay safe and enjoy the month. If you’d like to be the next Gage Park columnist, please send an email to [email protected] swnewsherald.com.
Mount Carmel tested in win over Brother Rice
By Steve Millar Correspondent After Mount Carmel beat each of its first five opponents by 24 points or more, senior quarterback Blainey Dowling thinks it is good the Caravan had to fight to the end against an upset-minded Brother Rice team. Dowling ran for the game-winning 15-yard touchdown with 1:58 left to lift Mount Carmel…
Area Sports Roundup: St. Laurence golfers make history
By Jeff Vorva Staff Writer That didn’t take long. The St. Laurence girls golf program is in only its second year of existence but last weekend celebrated a major accomplishment. Coach Jim Tracy’s troops won the Providence Catholic Class 1A Regional by four strokes, logging a 372 to edge University High (Chicago), which finished…
Pigskin Wrap: St. Xavier tops Roosevelt in thriller, gets Feminis career win No. 200
By Jeff Vorva Staff writer Saint Xavier coach Mike Feminis was gunning for his 200th career victory, but it looked more like he might be tagged with his 78th career loss. After wasting a 14-point halftime lead, the Cougars found themselves down six in the closing minute of the Homecoming game Oct. 1 at Bruce…
Lopez, Tabares threaten ‘no cash bail’ hearing
Claim law may release ‘violent, repeat offenders’ By Tim Hadac Two Southwest Side aldermen are threatening to defy their City Council colleagues and hold hearings on the impact of the state’s controversial SAFE-T Act on criminal justice. Fifteenth Ward Ald. Raymond Lopez and 23rd Ward Ald. Silvana Tabares joined 41st Ward Ald. Anthony Napolitano last…
They’ll never walk alone
Southwest Side native Robert Swiderski was mobbed by well-wishers at the entrance to the Chicago Lawn (8th) District police station last week, as he delivered a penny to each officer. The gesture was meant as a kind of conver- sation starter (“A penny for your thoughts?”) with police officers regarding job stress and mental health.…
Tears, cheers for ‘Father Bob’
Friends recall colorful character, loving heart (Editor’s note: this story appeared in the March 2, 2018 edition of the Southwest News-Herald.) By Anthony Caciopo It was a sweet sendoff for a sweet man. With the uplifting melody of “Amazing Grace” filling Hope Covenant Church in Orland Park, about 75 friends and loved ones of Robert…
Welcome to Rocktober
Classic cars, Elvis tribute artist headline a busy month By Tim Hadac The Southwest Side will start—and end–October with some classic fun designed to jog recollections of good times and create new moments to remember. A classic car show featuring dozens of sweet rides from decades gone by is set for 1 to 4 p.m.…
Assessor’s Office wins national awards
‘Testament to successful efforts.’ Kaegi says From staff reports The Cook County Assessor’s Office has received awards from two national organizations for creating a new residential model that contributes to fairly and accurately assessing homes in Cook County. The International Association of Assessing Officers gave the Assessor’s Office its Distinguished Research and Development Award, and The Center…
Forest Preserves stocking thousands of trout
From staff reports The Forest Preserves of Cook County’s 2022 fall inland trout fishing season will open at sunrise on Saturday, Oct. 15, at Axehead Lake in Park Ridge, Belleau Lake in Des Plaines, Busse Reservoir-North Pool in Elk Grove Village, Sag Quarry-East in Lemont, Horsetail Lake in Palos Park and Green Lake in Calumet…
Bailey vows to repeal SAFE-T Act during stop in McCook
By Jeff Vorva Republican candidate for governor Darren Bailey had several hundred “friends” eating out of the palm of his hand in McCook on Sept. 22. Bailey used the term “friends” countless times during his 15-minute speech at a rally in a huge parking lot across from the McCook Athletic and Exposition building, and they…
Illinois Supreme Court denies former lawmakers’ claim for back pay
By PETER HANCOCK Capitol News Illinois [email protected] SPRINGFIELD – The Illinois Supreme Court on Thursday rejected a lawsuit filed by two former state legislators who sued for back pay they believed they were due for raises that they voted against while in office. Former Sen. Michael Noland, D-Elgin, and former Sen. James Clayborne, D-Belleville, argued…
Illinois takes Equal Rights Amendment to appeals court
By PETER HANCOCK Capitol News Illinois [email protected] SPRINGFIELD – Attorneys for the state of Illinois joined their colleagues in Nevada and Virginia Wednesday in asking a federal appellate court to declare that the Equal Rights Amendment has been legally ratified as the 28th amendment to the U.S. Constitution. “I have a daughter who intends to…
CAPITOL RECAP: State announces further unemployment debt repayment
SPRINGFIELD – Gov. JB Pritzker announced a plan Tuesday, Sept. 27, to reduce a $1.8 billion Unemployment Insurance Trust Fund deficit by $450 million through an infusion of unemployment-related revenues. The trust fund is the pool of money paid into by employers to provide a social safety net for unemployed individuals. The employer’s insurance premiums…
State to reduce $1.8 billion federal unemployment debt by $450 million
By JERRY NOWICKI Capitol News Illinois [email protected] SPRINGFIELD – Gov. JB Pritzker announced a plan Tuesday to reduce a $1.8 billion Unemployment Insurance Trust Fund deficit by $450 million through an infusion of unemployment-related revenues. The trust fund is the pool of money paid into by employers to provide a social safety net for unemployed…
Capitol News Illinois to expand operations with $2 million McCormick Foundation grant
By CAPITOL NEWS ILLINOIS SPRINGFIELD – Capitol News Illinois will significantly expand its operations as it enters the fifth year of operations in 2023 because of a significant grant from the Robert R. McCormick Foundation. The McCormick Foundation has announced a three-year, $2 million investment in Capitol News Illinois, a nonprofit news organization that provides…
State Sen. Emil Jones III pleads not guilty in bribery case
By PETER HANCOCK Capitol News Illinois [email protected] SPRINGFIELD – State Sen. Emil Jones III pleaded not guilty in federal court Friday to three felony counts stemming from an alleged bribery scheme involving a red light camera company. Jones, 44, is a Chicago Democrat who has served in the Senate since 2009. He is also the…
Pritzker urges two lawmakers to resign
By PETER HANCOCK Capitol News Illinois [email protected] SPRINGFIELD – Gov. JB Pritzker called on two Democratic state senators Thursday to resign their seats amid allegations of misconduct. Sen. Emil Jones III, D-Chicago, was charged in federal court earlier this week with soliciting a $5,000 bribe from a red light camera company. And Sen. Michael Hastings,…
Pritzker urges two lawmakers to resign
Illinois Supreme Court denies former lawmakers’ claim for back pay
CAPITOL RECAP: Another Democratic senator charged in bribery scheme
By CAPITOL NEWS ILLINOIS SPRINGFIELD – State Sen. Emil Jones III has been charged in federal court with three criminal counts tied to his dealings with a red light camera company. Jones, a Chicago Democrat, is the son of former Senate President Emil Jones Jr. The younger Jones has served in the Senate since 2009…