Local News

Terrence Hickey is retiring at the end of June after working 18 years as a building inspector for the village of McCook. (Photo by Steve Metsch) 

McCook building inspector retires after 18 years

By Steve Metsch After 18 years of inspecting buildings, be it a modest bi-level house or a sprawling multi-million-dollar warehouse, Terrence Hickey is retiring from the village of McCook. His retirement takes effect June 28, Mayor Terrance Carr said during the June 3 meeting of the village board. “I’m jealous,” Carr said. “(He’s worked on)…

Members of Summit Girl Scout Troop 56615. (Supplied photo)

New Summit Girl Scout troop off and running

By Carol McGowan There’s a new Girl Scout Troop in Summit, and they have been busy. Troop 56615 is made up of girls from Summit School District 104 from first-grade to third-grade, and between 7-9 years old, making them Brownies in the scouting world. They have 10 girls so far, and Troop Leader Marisol Rodriguez…

Lyons Township Assessor Patrick Hynes at his office in Countryside. (Photo by Carol McGowan)

Lyons Township Assessor saves taxpayers big money

By Carol McGowan Property taxes. Just the mention of them can fire up a conversation quicker than you can start a nice one in a fire pit on a cool night. Many understand them, but some have no idea where their money is going. A lot of people think that the town, village or city…

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Oak Lawn police seize drugs, cash in raid on home

From staff reports Oak Lawn Police Department tactical detectives last week raided a home and recovered drugs and cash. At 8 a.m. on May 29, detectives executed a search warrant at 8825 S. Austin, assisted by the department’s Special Response Team. Detectives recovered more than 17 pounds of cannabis bagged for sale and approximately $7,000…

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Celebrating culture with smiles

Four young dancers share smiles backstage at Hubbard High School last weekend, just before they performed onstage as part of the season-ending performance of Ballet Folklórico Estrella Del Mar. The West Lawn-based youth group celebrates traditional Mexican culture through song and dance. – Greater Southwest News-Herald photo by Kelly White

Hills Chamber of Commerce members, Art Golden and Phyllis Majka on opening day of the Hills Farmers Market in 2023. (File photo)

Hills Farmers Market to open at 8 a.m. Friday

By Nuha Abdessalam The Hills Farmers Market is bringing more and offering unique experiences this year. The Hills Chamber of Commerce and the City of Hickory Hills have joined forces this year, pooling their resources and ideas to create an annual farmers market at 8653 W. 95th Street. The market will be held every Friday…

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…

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Great idea or snow job?

. SW Siders react to mayor’s winter plan .  By Tim Hadac A new plan to remove snow and ice from city sidewalks was released last Friday by Mayor Brandon Johnson, prompting a range of reactions from Southwest Siders. “Any time you see a politician announce something on a Friday, quietly with no press conference,…

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…

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Outdoor market returns to St. Mark Church on June 8

By Joe Boyle Summer is just a couple of weeks away and Worth Mayor Mary Werner reminds residents that there are plenty of activities to look forward to. Werner mentioned during the Worth Village Board meeting Tuesday night that the outdoor market returns from 7 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, June 8, at St. Mark Lutheran Church,…

The Independence Junior High School community memorialized art teacher Mike Maholland by planting a memorial tree overlooking his art classroom. A moment of silence was held outside during the tree planting. (Supplied photos)

Memorial service honors longtime Independence art teacher

By Kelly White Palos School District 128 honored the life of one of its beloved educators with a Memorial Service. The service at Independence Jr. High School, 6610 W. Highland Dr., Palos Heights, May 24 honored the legacy of longtime art teacher, Mike Maholland, of Hickory Hills, who passed away on February 18. “Mike Maholland…

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Oak Lawn Chamber to sponsor Restaurant Week

By Bob Bong More than a dozen restaurants have signed up to take part in the Oak Lawn Chamber of Commerce’s inaugural Restaurant Week in June. “This is a new endeavor for us,” said Anne Fritz, chamber executive director. “This will be our unofficial kick off to summer.” Fritz said the chamber’s marketing committee came…

Kelly Simkins shows off a blue-eyed cicada that she found in Orland Park. (Photo provided by Kelly Simkins)

One-in-a-million blue-eyed cicada found in Orland Park

By Jeff Vorva Kelly Simkins is an aspiring musician and someday she just might hit the stage and perform a Frank Sinatra song. Meanwhile, the Crestwood resident is partnering with another “Ol Blue Eyes” for a little fame. So, start spreading the news… Simkins, who owns Merlin’s Rockin’ Pet Show, was in Orland Park looking…

Summit says it will cost $1.7 million to replace the aging 74th Avenue pedestrian bridge. (Photo by Carol McGowan)

Summit looks to replace aging pedestrian bridge

By Carol McGowan Generations of Summit residents have used the 74th Avenue pedestrian bridge and village officials are now getting ready to replace the aging structure. Village Engineer Tim Klass from Novotny Engineering recently discussed replacing the bridge with a crowd of about 75 people at a community meeting on May 15 at Graves School.…

It will now cost golfers a few bucks more to play Flagg Creek. (File photo)

Flagg Creek golfers will pay more for greens fees

By Steve Metsch It will cost more to play at Flagg Creek Golf Course in Countryside this summer. The Pleasant Dale Park District, by a 4-1 vote, recently approved a rate increase that had been unanimously approved by the Countryside City Council in April. The park district and city are co-owners of Flagg Creek. The…

Illinois News

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…

Judge blocks law that would have banned newly slated candidates from ballot

Judge blocks law that would have banned newly slated candidates from ballot

By HANNAH MEISEL Capitol News Illinois hmeisel@capitolnewsillinois.com A Sangamon County judge on Wednesday blocked the Illinois State Board of Elections from enforcing a new law that would have prevented certain General Assembly candidates who didn’t run in the March primary from getting on the November ballot. The move doesn’t void the bill in its entirety,…

“No Schoolers”: How Illinois’ hands-off approach to homeschooling leaves children at risk

“No Schoolers”: How Illinois’ hands-off approach to homeschooling leaves children at risk

By BETH HUNDSDORFER  & MOLLY PARKER  CAPITOL NEWS ILLINOIS investigations@capitolnewsillinois.com This article was produced for ProPublica’s Local Reporting Network in partnership with Capitol News Illinois. It was on L.J.’s 11th birthday, in December 2022, that child welfare workers finally took him away. They arrived at his central Illinois home to investigate an abuse allegation and decided…

Brushing off concerns of overspending, Pritzker signs $53.1 billion state budget

Brushing off concerns of overspending, Pritzker signs $53.1 billion state budget

By ANDREW ADAMS JERRY NOWICKI & HANNAH MEISEL Capitol News Illinois news@capitolnewsillinois.com CHICAGO – Gov. JB Pritzker on Wednesday signed the state’s $53.1 billion spending plan for the upcoming fiscal year, the largest in state history.  The signing caps months of work – and tension – among top Democratic leaders in Springfield and within the…

Stalled bills: ‘Dignity in Pay Act,’ Prisoner Review Board changes fail to move

Stalled bills: ‘Dignity in Pay Act,’ Prisoner Review Board changes fail to move

By ALEX ABBEDUTO,  COLE LONGCOR & DILPREET RAJU Capitol News Illinois news@capitolnewsillinois.com A bill eliminating the subminimum wage for workers with disabilities failed to pass the General Assembly ahead of its May adjournment, although sponsors say they hope to pass it when lawmakers return in the fall. The federal Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938…

Time running out to net and protect young plants from cicada-related damage

Time running out to net and protect young plants from cicada-related damage

By DILPREET RAJU Capitol News Illinois draju@capitolnewsillinois.com While Illinois’ dual emergence of periodical cicada broods is harmless to people and animals, young trees may sustain serious damage if not protected by mid-June, experts at The Morton Arboretum said. This is the first co-emergence of these two broods since 1803, researcher Katie Dana from the Illinois…

Illinois made a bold promise to end poverty. In Alexander County, it’s hard to tell.

Illinois made a bold promise to end poverty. In Alexander County, it’s hard to tell.

By LYLEE GIBBS JAMILAH LEWIS MOLLY PARKER & JULIA RENDLEMAN Capitol News Illinois & the Saluki Local Reporting Lab news@capitolnewsillinois.com This story, produced in partnership with Southern Illinois University journalism students, was supported by grant funding from the Pulitzer Center. Pink and purple toys line the living room of this tiny public housing apartment in…

Illinois made a bold promise to end poverty. In Alexander County, it’s hard to tell.

Illinois made a bold promise to end poverty. In Alexander County, it’s hard to tell.

By LYLEE GIBBS JAMILAH LEWIS MOLLY PARKER & JULIA RENDLEMAN Capitol News Illinois & the Saluki Local Reporting Lab news@capitolnewsillinois.com This story, produced in partnership with Southern Illinois University journalism students, was supported by grant funding from the Pulitzer Center. Pink and purple toys line the living room of this tiny public housing apartment in…

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