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Owner Rosa Prieto prepares to cut the ribbon and is encouraged by co-owner and husband, Jaime Prieto, to her left, for the Healthy and Delicious Smoothie Spot grand opening in Oak Lawn on May 29. They are joined by Oak Lawn Chamber of Commerce members and in back (from left) Steve Loulousis, president of the Oak Lawn Parks Foundation; Mayor Terry Vorderer, and behind Rosa, Natasha Miller Williams, president of the chamber. (Photos by Joe Boyle)

Comings & Goings: New business offers fresh and healthy smoothies

By Joe Boyle Rosa Prieto had been considering opening a business that provides refreshing drinks and food but was waiting for the right time. For Rosa and her husband, Jaime Prieto, that time has arrived. The Healthy and Delicious Smoothie Spot, 10408 S. Cicero Ave., Oak Lawn, officially opened on March 10. Since then, the…

Jennifer Doede

Stagg Athletic Director earns advanced certification 

From staff reports Amos Alonzo Stagg High School Athletic Director Jennifer Doede has been recognized by the National Interscholastic Athletic Administrators Association as a Certified Master Athletic Administrator. To earn this distinction, Doede has demonstrated exemplary knowledge, contributions, and on-going professional development in the field of interscholastic athletic administration. The voluntary certification process included a…

Palos Heights School District 128 students achieved success at the 2024 South Cook Regional Math Bowl held at Prairie State College in Chicago Heights. (Supplied photos)

2024 Math Bowl adds up to success for District 128

By Kelly White If you asked first-grader Jimmy Gushurst his favorite subject, he will tell you, simply, math. However, Jimmy’s determination in the field led him to take home first place for his grade level at Palos Heights School District 128 in the 2024 South Cook Math Bowl. “Math is fun,” Jimmy, 6, of Palos…

Palos 118 students participated in the 2024 South Cook Math Bowl taking home three first-place awards as well as several others. First-grade to fourth-grade teams (from left) Ian McDougal, Kevin Kaufmann, Charlie O’Malley, Luke Bosack, Noah Gaw, Vladyslav Burakov, Claire Drapa, and Jacob Dubrowski. (Supplied photos)

Palos 118 teams shine at 2024 South Cook Math Bowl

From staff reports Palos School District 118 took home several awards at the 2024 South Cook Math Bowl that was held at Prairie State College in May. On day one of the event, Palos 118’s 5th/6th grade team took first place, with Brian Kaufmann placing fifth and Rhiannon Chen placing second in the sixth-grade individual competition.…

Orland Township and Supervisor Paul O'Grady hosted a Senior Health Fair aimed to provide free health services and information to senior citizens. The event took place on May 21 at Orland Township, 14807 S. Ravinia Ave. (Supplied photos)

Orland Township hosts annual Senior Health Fair

By Kelly White Orland Township cares about the health and welfare of its residents. The township and Supervisor Paul O’Grady hosted a Senior Health Fair aimed to provide free health services and information to senior citizens. The event took place on May 21 at Orland Township, 14807 S. Ravinia Ave. “Our annual Senior Health Fair…

Timothy Rubens, of Alsip, stands proudly next to his daughter, Sascha, 18, who received a 'Choose to Include' scholarship from Special Olympics of Illinois. This is awarded to students that demonstrate commitment to building an inclusive environment within their school and community. (Supplied photo)

Sascha Rubens graduates at the top of her Shepard class

By Kelly White Sascha Rubens has left quite the imprint on her former high school. Rubens become one of eight students in Illinois to receive a Choose to Include scholarship from Special Olympics of Illinois. This is awarded to students that demonstrate commitment to building an inclusive environment within their school and community. “I am…

Michael Schofield towers over Orland Park Pioneer football players during a June 2 ceremony.  (Village of Orland Park photo)

Rainy ribbon-cutting at Schussler Park strangely appropriate

By Jeff Vorva It was actually fitting that the Schussler Park ribbon cutting ceremony on June 1 took place during a downpour. The first phase of the face-lift of the park, it was the opening of the Michael Schofield III Sports Complex to the public and the rain not only didn’t put a damper on…

Providence's Enzo Infelise dives into third for an RBI triple with Pancho Vazquez ready to field the throw. Photo by Xavier Sanchez

Baseball | Providence edges Mount Carmel in extras to punch ticket to state

By Xavier Sanchez Correspondent After a stirring upset of unbeaten Nazareth to win the Class 4A Reavis Sectional championship, Mount Carmel’s bid for a trip to the state finals ended with a 3-2 extra-inning loss to Providence in the supersectional round. Celtics shortstop Jackson Smith’s single off Matt Murphy drove in Eddie Olszta with the…

MtC-Naz play at plate

Baseball Class 4A Sectionals | Third straight state title eludes history-making Nazareth

By Xavier Sanchez Correspondent After back-to-back Class 3A state titles in 2022 and 2023, Nazareth jumped to Class 4A this season and did not miss a beat. The Roadrunners cruised to 37 straight victories heading into their sectional championship matchup with Mount Carmel. The Caravan scored two late runs in a tight contest and advanced…

MtC bsball Sect trophy

Mount Carmel dethrones unbeaten, two-time defending champ Nazareth for sectional title

By Xavier Sanchez Correspondent Mount Carmel came into its Class 4A sectional matchup against Nazareth viewed as the underdog. The favored Roadrunners did, after all, enter the game 37-0 and were gunning for a third consecutive state championship. The Caravan have respect for the Roadrunners, but they would never call themselves an underdog; and they…

Marist's Nathen Toth (3) was named the boys volleyball state finals MVP by the Illiniois Volleyball Coaches Association. File photo

Marist tops York for its fourth boys volleyball state title

By Randy Whalen Correspondent What does it take to make a state champion? “We had guys that I’ve been hard on for nine months,” Marist boys volleyball coach Jordan Vidovic said. “All for a five-point stretch. “None of them ran away from the challenge.” How big were some of those five-point stretches? The proof is…

Lyons’ Brody Lee-Caracci (right) and Lions fans go crazy after a play against Glenbard West in the state quarterfinals May 31 in Hoffman Estates. Photo by Jeff Vorva

Boys Volleyball State Finals | Hilltoppers prove to be thorn in Lions’ paw

By Randy Whalen Correspondent After finishing state runner-up in 2023, Lyons knew it had the potential to be in position for another run at a state championship this season. The Lions did that, advancing to the state tournament for a second straight season. But they ran into an old foe in a rematch of last year’s…

Michael Schofield, Kendall Coyne Schofield and their son, Drew, with the Walter Cup won by Coyne Schofield and her teammates on the Professional Women’s Hockey League’s Minnesota team. Photo courtesy of the Schofield family

Coyne Schofield continues to make hockey history

By Jeff Vorva Correspondent Kendall Coyne Schofield has earned numerous significant accolades during her hockey career, including an Olympic gold medal and a pair of Olympic silver medals. The Sandburg graduate and Palos Heights native added to that collection by helping PWHL Minnesota win the inaugural Professional Women’s Hockey League championship on May 29 in…

Red Stars defender Tatumn Milazzo, an Orland Park native, is looking forward to fans making a lot of noise for the team at the June 8 Wrigley Field match. Photo by Jeff Vorva

Red Stars ready for Wrigley

By Jeff Vorva Correspondent After weeks of hype and anticipation, the Chicago Red Stars are finally ready to invade Wrigley Field. While the Red Stars may not draw the NWSL record of 34,130 spectators they were hoping for on June 8, they do have a shot to surpass the franchise record 23,951, which was set…

Jamal Thompson is the new boys basketball coach at Richards.

Area Sports Roundup | New coaches named at Richards and Stagg

By Jeff Vorva Correspondent A few area high school coaching vacancies have been filled, including those for Richards boys basketball and Stagg football. Jamal Thompson takes over at Richards for Kyle Rathbun. Thompson has experience coaching at Seton, Leo and St. Rita. Jacob O’Connor will lead Stagg football, where he takes the reins from Colt…

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Just weeks before Republican National Convention, Illinois GOP chair announces resignation

Just weeks before Republican National Convention, Illinois GOP chair announces resignation

By HANNAH MEISEL Capitol News Illinois hmeisel@capitolnewsillinois.com Halfway through the 2024 election cycle and just a few weeks away from the Republican National Convention in Milwaukee, Illinois GOP Chair Don Tracy on Wednesday announced his resignation as head of the state Republican Party. Tracy, who’d held the job since February 2021, explained his resignation in…

As Illinois session ends, lawmakers’ attempt to reinstate wetland protections fails

As Illinois session ends, lawmakers’ attempt to reinstate wetland protections fails

by JENNIFER BAMBERG Investigate Midwest jennifer.bamberg@investigatemidwest.org In 2006, 19-year-old Jessica Whinston inherited 20 acres of land that her grandparents once farmed in Quincy, Illinois. The land had sat dormant since the 1980s and was overgrown, but Whinston and her husband Bradley worked to turn it into a productive farm. The couple were eventually able to…

Elections board dismisses illegal campaign coordination complaint, declines to clarify law

Elections board dismisses illegal campaign coordination complaint, declines to clarify law

By HANNAH MEISEL Capitol News Illinois hmeisel@capitolnewsillinois.com CHICAGO – State elections officials on Tuesday indicated they were unlikely to step in to clarify what constitutes illegal campaign coordination after voting to dismiss a complaint alleging such coordination in the 2022 campaign for governor. At their monthly meeting in Chicago, Illinois State Board of Elections members…

Illinois’ ban on ‘bump stocks’ remains in place despite U.S. Supreme Court decision

Illinois’ ban on ‘bump stocks’ remains in place despite U.S. Supreme Court decision

By PETER HANCOCK Capitol News Illinois phancock@capitolnewsillinois.com SPRINGFIELD – An Illinois law banning the sale and use of “bump stocks” and other devices that increase the firing power of semiautomatic weapons remains in place, at least for now, despite a U.S. Supreme Court decision Friday striking down a federal ban on such items. “Illinois law…

Lawmakers pass on oversight vote for Pritzker’s prison closure, rebuild plan

Lawmakers pass on oversight vote for Pritzker’s prison closure, rebuild plan

By HANNAH MEISEL & DILPREET RAJU Capitol News Illinois news@capitolnewsillinois.com SPRINGFIELD – For the last two decades, each time a governor has moved to close a large state-run facility like a prison or mental health center, a legislative oversight panel has voted on the plan. That changed on Friday – at least for now –…

‘We don’t really know what we’re voting on,’ top Dem says of Pritzker’s prison plan

‘We don’t really know what we’re voting on,’ top Dem says of Pritzker’s prison plan

By HANNAH MEISEL Capitol News Illinois hmeisel@capitolnewsillinois.com LINCOLN – On the eve of a scheduled vote to advise Gov. JB Pritzker’s administration on plans to close and rebuild a pair of dilapidated state prisons, hundreds filed into a junior high school gymnasium Thursday evening clad in matching green T-shirts. Printed on the shirts was a…

Illinois child tax credit: who gets it, how much is it?

Illinois child tax credit: who gets it, how much is it?

By ANDREW ADAMS Capitol News Illinois aadams@capitolnewsillinois.com In the final hours of their spring legislative session, Illinois lawmakers approved a tax credit of up to about $300 for families with young children.  The credit is available to Illinoisans with children under age 12 who qualify for the federal Earned Income Tax Credit, or EITC. Although…

Members of House speaker’s staff sue over ongoing unionization conflict

Members of House speaker’s staff sue over ongoing unionization conflict

By HANNAH MEISEL Capitol News Illinois hmeisel@capitolnewsillinois.com SPRINGFIELD – Members of a would-be union representing staffers in House Speaker Emanuel “Chris” Welch’s office filed suit against their boss on Friday, asking a Cook County judge to force recognition of the union. The Illinois Legislative Staff Association, which formed in the fall of 2022, claims Welch’s…

Elections board urged to dismiss complaint that Bailey illegally coordinated in 2022 campaign

Elections board urged to dismiss complaint that Bailey illegally coordinated in 2022 campaign

By HANNAH MEISEL Capitol News Illinois hmeisel@capitolnewsillinois.com A hearing officer is recommending the Illinois State Board of Elections dismiss a complaint that alleged conservative radio host and political operative Dan Proft illegally coordinated with former Republican state Sen. Darren Bailey during his 2022 campaign for governor. Proft, a one-time gubernatorial candidate himself, is behind an…

Communities, commission push Pritzker admin for more prison plan details

Communities, commission push Pritzker admin for more prison plan details

By DILPREET RAJU Capitol News Illinois news@capitolnewsillinois.com Jimmy Soto spent more than 42 years wrongfully imprisoned in Illinois Department of Corrections facilities. In 2020, he was moved to the “F-House” at Stateville Correctional Center in Joliet, a condemned unit, not because he was being punished, but because it was where the facility was housing individuals…