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Cool Kids see Santa

. Several dozen special-needs boys and girls were let in early at the Midway Chamber of Commerce’s annual Snack With Santa, held earlier this month at Mayfield Banquets. The special time was the brainchild of the Midway Cool Kids Club, a social club founded earlier this year by Geno Randazzo of All Exterior Contractors. The…

Pam Paris

Palos 118 school board member honored for continued learning  

Pam Paris, a member of the Palos School District 118 Board of Education, has been recognized by the Illinois Association of School Boards for her participation in a number of professional development and leadership activities during her service as a school board member. IASB recognizes school board members who show a dedication and desire to learn more about local school governance, adding to their leadership skills, knowledge of state and national educational issues, and commitment to serving in trust of their community and their students. Paris acquired 40 credits to earn IASB’s Board Leader Recognition status. Because of Paris’ ongoing commitment to…

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Nazareth Academy girls’ art on religious Christmas cards

. From staff reports Two local girls are among four students at Nazareth Academy whose works of art are available on the CSJ (Congregation of St. Joseph) Ministry of the Arts website for free download Christmas cards. “These four incredible art students have become part of the tradition honored by the CSJ Sisters to spread…

Orland Park Mayor Keith Pekau encourages dialogue between residents and elected officials. (Photo by Jeff Vorva)

Pekau encourages discussions between residents and officials

By Jeff Vorva Orland Park Mayor Keith Pekau was philosophical about local and national politics. During the Dec. 4 village board meeting, he relayed a story about some events he recently attended and how he got to know some high-profile politicians in a more relaxed setting, and he encouraged residents of Orland Park to do…

A crowd of about 50 people were on hand when 40 trees were planted at Commissioners Park in Justice thanks to a Openlands TreePlanters grant. (Supplied photos)

Openlands grant brings 40 new trees to Justice park

From staff reports A total of 40 new trees were recently planted at Commissioners Park in Justice thanks to an Openlands TreePlanters Grant awarded to the Justice Park District. Over 50 people gathered on October 28 to participate in the tree planting event, including community members, volunteers, Openlands staff, Justice Park District staff and commissioners,…

A ribbon-cutting ceremony was held at High 5 Heights, 12213 S. Harlem, Palos Heights, on November 29. (Photos by Kelly White)

High 5 Heights retail shop opens in Palos Heights

By Kelly White The first retail store to train, employ, sell products made by adults with special needs opened its doors in Palos Heights. The store, called, High 5 Heights at 12213 S. Harlem, Palos Heights, provides a new era of opportunity for adult students with special needs within the District 218 community. High 5…

Suphi Kurdi, brother of the late Murod Kurdi, and their mother, Fadia Muhamad, are joined by attorney David Petrich after the hearing. They vowed to seek justice. (Photos by Steve Metsch)

Fine, community service for woman who killed man in fatal accident

Victim’s family outraged over outcome By Steve Metsch Six months after the car she was driving hit and killed Murod Kurdi, Leanne Cusack had her day in court. On Tuesday, she was found guilty of failure to reduce speed to avoid an accident – the only charge against her – for the fatal June 5…

Penelope Maka, 7, of Palos Heights, and her brother, Jacob, 10, met with Santa at the Palos Heights Kris Kringle Market on Friday night. (Photos by Kelly White)

Palos Heights celebrates holiday season at Kris Kringle Market

By Kelly White The Palos Heights community welcomed in the Christmas season by showcasing its small-town charm and holiday cheer this past weekend. Residents from Palos Heights, along with those from surrounding communities, came out to celebrate the Holidays in the Heights at the city’s Kris Kringle Market on December 1 and December 2 at…

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Unique, cheerful, local crafts at Hale Park

. By Tim Hadac Editor Clear-Ridge Reporter & NewsHound . I’ve never been one to decorate for Christmas, just for the sake of decorating. And I’m not a fan of many of the things we see these days. I’ll take a pass on Christmas decorations that involve images of celebrities, pro sports logos, off-color jokes,…

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Keeping fighters flying

  Garfield Ridge native Brandon Tapia recently graduated from U.S. Air Force Basic Military Training with honors – a recognition earned by only the top 10% of each class. After Air Force BMT, airmen begin technical training to learn the technical skills needed to perform in their career field specialties. The field Tapia will be…

Misael Sanchez

Offer cash reward in Chrysler Village slaying

. By Tim Hadac . Someone somewhere knows who shot and killed Misael Sanchez. To help bring that person forward, the Cook County Crime Stoppers group is offering a cash reward of up to $15,000 for information leading to the killer’s arrest. Sanchez, 23, was shot in the 5200 block of West 64th Place (close…

Oak Lawn Community High School students, Aiden Alarcon, 15, of Hometown and Sarah Abdallah, 14, of Oak Lawn, donating food to the high school's Student Council Food Drive. (Supplied photo)

OLCHS Student Council Thanksgiving Food Drive aids needy

By Kelly White Donating to those in need during the holiday season are students at Oak Lawn Community High School. The Student Council at the high school, 9400 Southwest Hwy. in Oak Lawn, recently hosted its annual Thanksgiving Food Drive. “I like the Student Council Thanksgiving Food Drive because it’s an opportunity to give back…

A chart depicting future changes for Oak Lawn Community High School, including an additional parking lot, were provided during the Oak Lawn Village Board meeting Tuesday morning. (Photo by Joe Boyle)

Oak Lawn approves new parking lot, fieldhouse for OLCHS

By Joe Boyle An additional parking lot and an athletic fieldhouse has been approved for Oak Lawn Community High School. Joseph McCurdy, assistant superintendent for Oak Lawn Community High School District 229, gave a brief slide presentation detailing some of the plans for the parking lot and an athletic fieldhouse during the Oak Lawn Village Board meeting Tuesday morning. The Zoning…

Games designed by Palos 118 ALPS students Shea Currran (from left), Carol Pack, and Marley McCall all took home awards from this year’s Young Inventor Challenge. (Supplied photos)

Palos 118 students win at 2023 Young Inventor Challenge

Fourth-grade students from Palos School District 118 took home three awards at the 2023 Young Inventor Challenge. Students from Palos East and West Elementaries participated in the event on November 4 and 5 in Chicago. The program gives students ages 6 to18 an opportunity to develop and pitch their original inventions to toy and game companies and…

Navy recruits enjoy a Thanksgiving feast courtesy of Joshua W. Harris VFW Post 2868 in Brookfield. (Photos by Nuha Abdessalam)

Brookfield VFW helps Navy recruits enjoy Thanksgiving

By Nuha Abdessalam About 50 recruits undergoing Boot Camp at the Great Lakes Naval Base in North Chicago had plenty to be thankful for this Thanksgiving. “This has been so challenging,” said Seaman recruit Cazja Andrades. “These nine weeks have been so hard but such a gift.” “Everyone here has been such a godsend,” said…

Edwin Espinoza

Off-duty Chicago police officer dies in Oak Lawn crash

By Bob Bong An off-duty Chicago police officer was killed Sunday morning when a vehicle crashed into a tree at 95th Street and Harlem Avenue in Oak Lawn. The Cook County Medical Examiner’s Office identified the driver as Edwin Espinoza, 35, of the 5300 block of South Merrimac Avenue on the city’s Southwest Side. Chicago…

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Palos Park police cadets holiday food drive underway

The Palos Park Police Cadet program annual Holiday Food Drive is underway. The cadets are looking for donations of non-perishable foods such as canned goods or boxed goods. The cadets will accept donations at the Palos Park Police Department located at 8999 W. 123rd Street. Donations are accepted through January 1.  This is another way…

An Evil Elf is among the terrors at Christmas Fear in Oak Lawn on December 15-17. (Supplied photo)

Midnight Terror serves up a different kind of spirits at Christmas Fear

By Bob Bong The Halloween fans at Midnight Terror in Oak Lawn have decided to extend the haunted house season into the holidays with their eighth annual Christmas Fear weekend in December. Savage Santas, eerie elves, and sinister snowmen will be running amok and showing off their own kind of Christmas spirit at the haunted…

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Catholic schools dilemma

. After loss in Springfield, advocates search for a Plan B . By Tim Hadac After a clear defeat in Springfield earlier this month, supporters of the state’s Invest in Kids scholarship program—which includes a number of Catholic school parents on the Southwest Side—are searching for a Plan B. “What we do at this point…

Mr. Fitzgerald, aka Tommy Fitz.

Tommy Fitz, truly a good man

. By Tim Hadac Editor Clear-Ridge Reporter & NewsHound . The obituary said Thomas M. Fitzgerald. But to me, it was almost like it was referring to someone else, if only because I—like so many others in Clearing and Garfield Ridge–knew him as Tommy Fitz. He died suddenly, unexpectedly, on Nov. 15 at age 65.…

Illinois News

State health plan declares racism a public health crisis

State health plan declares racism a public health crisis

By DILPREET RAJU Capitol News Illinois draju@capitolnewsillinois.com A new state health report pinpoints racism as a public health crisis while also noting Illinois needs to improve in the areas of maternal and infant health, mental health and substance use disorders. The broad goals are laid out in a draft of the State Health Improvement Plan,…

For at least 6 months, state failed to act on Carlinville funeral director that mishandled remains

For at least 6 months, state failed to act on Carlinville funeral director that mishandled remains

By BETH HUNDSDORFER Capitol News Illinois bhundsdorfer@capitolnewsillinois.com State regulators allowed a Carlinville funeral director to operate for months despite a complaint filed by a local coroner who found a decomposing body in his funeral home and alleged the care of the remains was “unacceptable and criminal in nature.” While trying to assist a local family…

Dolly Parton Imagination Library officially launches statewide in Illinois

Dolly Parton Imagination Library officially launches statewide in Illinois

By PETER HANCOCK Capitol News Illinois phancock@capitolnewsillinois.com SPRINGFIELD – Illinois families with infants and toddlers now have access to free children’s books that can be sent directly to their home, regardless of their income. Gov. JB Pritzker on Tuesday announced the official launch of the state’s partnership with Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library, a program founded…

What to know about Illinois’ assault weapons ban

What to know about Illinois’ assault weapons ban

By ANDREW ADAMS  Capitol News Illinois aadams@capitolnewsillinois.com Gun owners face a Jan. 1 deadline to register their assault weapons with the state under Illinois’ assault weapons law. But between lawsuits and ongoing policymaking, the exact guns, accessories and ammunition covered under the Protect Illinois Communities Act remain unclear to many gun rights advocates, who point…

Capitol Cast: Filing Day for 2024 primary brings frigid temps and election themes to Springfield

Capitol Cast: Filing Day for 2024 primary brings frigid temps and election themes to Springfield

Capitol News Illinois Broadcast Director Jennifer Fuller talks with Editor-in-Chief Jerry Nowicki about the 2023 petition filing deadline for Illinois’ 2024 primary election.   Capitol News Illinois · Capitol Cast: Filing Day for 2024 primary brings frigid temps and election themes to Springfield

Supreme Court rules teen bicyclist is covered by father’s auto insurance policy

Supreme Court rules teen bicyclist is covered by father’s auto insurance policy

By PETER HANCOCK Capitol News Illinois phancock@capitolnewsillinois.com SPRINGFIELD – The Illinois Supreme Court ruled Thursday that automobile insurance policies must cover people against uninsured motorists and hit-and-run accidents, even if the person covered by the policy is not in a vehicle at the time of the accident. The case involved a 14-year-old Chicago boy, Cristopher…

State high court finds medical personnel exemption to biometric information privacy law

State high court finds medical personnel exemption to biometric information privacy law

By HANNAH MEISEL Capitol News Illinois hmeisel@capitolnewsillinois.com The Illinois Supreme Court on Thursday ruled the state’s strongest-in-the-nation biometric information privacy law does have an exemption: health care workers who use fingerprints or similar scans to access things like medication, materials or patient health information. In a unanimous opinion, the justices ruled against a pair of…

Illinois Supreme Court: FOID records exempt from public disclosure

Illinois Supreme Court: FOID records exempt from public disclosure

By PETER HANCOCK  Capitol News Illinois  phancock@capitolnewsillinois.com  SPRINGFIELD – The Illinois Supreme Court ruled Thursday that people may obtain records about their own Firearm Owners Identification cards, but they may not use the state’s Freedom of Information Act to do so.  In a 7-0 ruling, the court said the Illinois State Police acted properly when…

Temporary staffing agencies seek to block new state labor law

Temporary staffing agencies seek to block new state labor law

By PETER HANCOCK Capitol News Illinois phancock@capitolnewsillinois.com SPRINGFIELD – A group of temporary staffing agencies and their trade associations are asking a federal court to block enforcement of a new state law that governs how day laborers and temp workers are managed and paid. The lawsuit, filed earlier this month in Chicago, challenges several changes…

Former GOP senator, third-party governor candidate to represent himself in corruption trial

Former GOP senator, third-party governor candidate to represent himself in corruption trial

By HANNAH MEISEL Capitol News Illinois hmeisel@capitolnewsillinois.com SPRINGFIELD – Monday was supposed to have been the first day in the weeklong federal corruption trial of former Republican state Sen. Sam McCann, who allegedly misused more than $200,000 in campaign funds for personal expenses. A pull-down projector screen in the Springfield courtroom of U.S. District Judge…

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