Local News

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Comings & Goings: Palos Jewel, Oak Lawn Mariano’s to be sold in merger deal

By Bob Bong / July 10, 2024 /

By Bob Bong Kroger and Albertson’s this week released the list of stores the companies plan to sell, should a merger between the grocery giants be approved by regulators. Jewel Food Stores in Alsip and Palos Heights are among the stores listed for sale as well as Mariano’s locations in Oak Lawn, Orland Park, and Frankfort. The…

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Palos Heights native is top dog in famous eating contest

By Jeff Vorva / July 9, 2024 /

By Jeff Vorva At one time, it may have seemed impossible for Palos Heights native Patrick Bertoletti to win the Nathan’s Hog Dog Eating contest. After all, Joey Chestnut was roasting opponents year after year by winning 16 titles since 2007 and had a streak of gobbling up championships eight years in a row heading…

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Woman charged in Palos Heights robbery

By Bob Bong / July 5, 2024 / Comments Off on Woman charged in Palos Heights robbery

From staff reports A Chicago woman was charged last month with robbery in connection with an incident in May in the parking lot of the Jewel-Osco at 12803 S. Harlem Ave. Police said Janae Banks, 26, was taken into custody on June 22 at a home in the 8800 block of South Indiana Avenue in…

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MVCC, SD218 offer STEAM classes

By Kelly White / July 5, 2024 / Comments Off on MVCC, SD218 offer STEAM classes

By Kelly White Kids have been rushing back to the classroom this summer. Through an educational collaboration with Moraine Valley Community College, Community High School District 218’s STEAM camp, students entering grades second through eighth have been learning more about science, technology, engineering, art and math over the break. These fields are providing students with…

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Shepard’s yearbook wins national recognition

By Kelly White / June 26, 2024 / Comments Off on Shepard’s yearbook wins national recognition

By Kelly White Shepard High School students have worked tirelessly to create a yearbook for this academic year that was nationally recognized. The high school, 13049 S. Ridgeland Ave. in Palos Heights, was chosen as a Yearbook Excellence Contest recipient from Walsworth Publishing Company, a family-owned printing company based out of Marceline, Missouri. Walsworth produces…

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Palos Heights tax preparer convicted of Covid-relief fraud

By Bob Bong / June 21, 2024 / Comments Off on Palos Heights tax preparer convicted of Covid-relief fraud

From staff reports A Palos Heights tax preparer who operates a business in Bridgeview has been convicted on federal charges for fraudulently assisting customers in obtaining loans under the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act. The jury in U.S. District Court in Chicago on June 10 convicted Hadi Isbaih, 42, on all four counts…

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Renovations begin on Shepard High School theater

By Kelly White / June 21, 2024 / Comments Off on Renovations begin on Shepard High School theater

By Kelly White Shepard High School, which prides itself in the fine arts, will soon have a beautifully reconstructed theater right on its Palos Heights campus. The Community High School District 218 Board of Education recently unanimously approved funding for the renovation of the Fine Arts Center at the high school at 13049 S. Ridgeland…

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Orland Township event focuses on mental health

By Kelly White / June 19, 2024 /

By Kelly White Orland Township is taking the time to focus on mental health. Residents were invited out to join Orland Township Supervisor Paul O’Grady for an event called, Minds Matter 2024, on May 16 at Orland Township, located at 14807 S. Ravinia Avenue in Orland Park. “This was an excellent opportunity to connect with…

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2024 Math Bowl adds up to success for District 128

By Kelly White / June 6, 2024 /

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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Palos 118 teams shine at 2024 South Cook Math Bowl

By Bob Bong / June 6, 2024 / Comments Off on 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.…

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Marist basketball player Darshan Thomas at an XposureRuns unsigned seniors event. Photo by Xavier Sanchez

XposureRuns seeks to raise profile of high school hoops players

By Xavier Sanchez Correspondent While some people are leaving Illinois in search of opportunities elsewhere, some are coming to the state and creating their own opportunities for themselves and others. Mustafa Sulaiman, a native of Philadelphia who now lives in south suburban Matteson, is trying to help pave the way to college for student-athletes across…

Red Stars goalie Mackenzie Wood makes a save in a July 20 Summer Cup match against Gotham. IMAGN photo

Gotham tops Red Stars in PKs after scoreless draw

By Jeff Vorva Correspondent It’s rare to see the Chicago Red Stars participate in shootouts because NWSL regular-season games end in regulation, so fans got a treat on July 20. Gotham knocked off the Red Stars 5-4 on penalty kicks after regulation ended in a scoreless draw during the first round of the Summer Cup…

St. Rita graduate Sir Jamison Jones is ready to sign a deal with the Washington Nationals, who selected him in the 2024 MLB draft. Photo by Jeff Vorva

Players from Nazareth and St. Rita taken in 2024 MLB draft

By Jeff Vorva Correspondent Three players from the area were selected in the 2024 Major League Baseball draft, which took place July 14-16. Pitcher Ryan Smith, who graduated from Nazareth in 2021 and ended up at Illinois-Chicago, was taken by Houston in the ninth round of the draft. Smith, who underwent Tommy John surgery while…

The Green Hills Public Library District, 10331 Interlochen Dr., Palos Hills, is hosting a Back-to-School Collection Drive from now until Friday, August 9. (Supplied photo)

Green Hills Library collecting back-to-school supplies

By Kelly White It may still be summer but the Green Hills Public Library District is preparing students for their return to the classroom. The library, 10331 Interlochen Dr., Palos Hills, is hosting a Back-to-School Collection Drive from now until Friday, August 9. “One of my biggest goals as a librarian has always been breaking…

Rihanna will open her first Savage X Fenty store in Illinois at Orland Square Mall on Friday. (Photo by Allie Baar)

Rihanna to open Savage X Fenty store in Orland Park on Friday

By Bob Bong Barbados superstar Rihanna will open her first Savage X Fenty store in Illinois on Friday morning in Orland Square Mall in Orland Park. The singer, actor and businesswoman will open the store at the mall’s lower level near the Coach store at 10 a.m. Savage X Fenty will host a grand opening…

The Village of Palos Park encouraged residents to unplug their devices for a day at part of Unplug Illinois on July 13. (Supplied photo)

Palos Park encourages residents to unplug

By Kelly White The Village of Palos Park encouraged residents to unplug their devices for a day at part of Unplug Illinois on Saturday, July 13. The day is a state-wide effort, started in 2014, to encourage everyone to “plug into” the amazing recreational opportunities offered by local park and recreation agencies. The Village of…

Portillo's Hot Dogs (PRNewsFoto/Portillo's Hot Dogs)

Comings & Goings: Portillo’s coming to Orland Park

By Jeff Vorva After the Orland Park Village Board voted Monday night to allow for a special use program, it set the wheels in motion for a Portillo’s Hot Dogs drive through to be built at 20 Orland Square Drive, the site of the shuttered Denny’s. It will be a 3,305-foot square building and will…

Orland Park Mayor Keith Pekau said that pre-concert problems caused by the weather on July 13 are fixable.
(Photo by Jeff Vorva)

Mayor says Centennial Park West concert snafus ‘easily solvable’

By Jeff Vorva The weather gods hit Orland Park’s Pat Benatar concert with their worst shot. A major storm took place July 13 when the event at the refurbished Centennial Park West was scheduled to open the gates. That caused a delay in opening the gates for 40 minutes which resulted in massive lines and…

Cleveland Cavaliers guard-forward Max Strus hits a 3-pointer last season over the Boston Celtics' Jaylen Brown. Photo courtesy of Max Strus

Hometown Hoops Hero: Stagg alum Max Strus discusses his rise through the NBA, hitting big shots and his annual youth hoops camp

By Xavier Sanchez Correspondent A lot of changes have taken place for Max Strus during the past year. While the Cleveland Cavaliers guard has played in an NBA Finals and been featured as No. 1 on ESPN SportsCenter’s “Top Plays,” among other noteworthy events, the Stagg alum is the same homegrown kid who grew up…

Chicago Red Stars forward Mallory Swanson (left) earned two big awards for her recent goal-scoring spree. Photo by Jeff Vorva

Red Stars’ Swanson picks up Best XI of Month honors

By Jeff Vorva Correspondent Chicago Red Stars forward Mallory Swanson picked up some big honors recently, including being named to the NWSL’s Best XI of the Month for June. This is the seventh time in Swanson’s career and the fourth time as a Red Star she has won a best of the month award. In…

Illinois News

Illinois Republicans urged to look beyond traditional base as national party courts unions

Illinois Republicans urged to look beyond traditional base as national party courts unions

By PETER HANCOCK, HANNAH MEISEL & ANDREW ADAMS Capitol News Illinois news@capitolnewsillinois.com MILWAUKEE – A former Republican congressman from New York told Illinois Republicans Tuesday that to win more elections in their deeply blue state, they need to reach beyond the traditional conservative voting base. “We need to challenge ourselves to get out and talk…

Bodycam video shows Sonya Massey’s last minutes, deputy’s coarse description

Bodycam video shows Sonya Massey’s last minutes, deputy’s coarse description

BETH HUNDSDORFER Capitol News Illinois  news@capitolnewsillinois.com  Sonya Massey’s last words were: “I rebuke you in the name of Jesus,” followed by “I’m sorry,” as Sangamon County Sheriff’s deputy Sean Grayson put his hand on his 9 mm pistol and threatened to shoot her in the face.  Seconds later, he did.  Grayson, 30, who is white,…

Illinois faces backlash over bid to end oversight of disability services

Illinois faces backlash over bid to end oversight of disability services

By MOLLY PARKER  & BETH HUNDSDORFER  Capitol News Illinois investigations@capitolnewsillinois.com As Illinois seeks to end federal court oversight of its disability services, an independent court monitor says the state continues to fall short of promises made 13 years ago to allow people with intellectual and developmental disabilities to live outside of institutions.  Court hearings are…

More Illinois Democrats – including Pritzker – endorse Harris for president

More Illinois Democrats – including Pritzker – endorse Harris for president

By ANDREW ADAMS Capitol News Illinois aadams@capitolnewsillinois.com Gov. JB Pritzker added his name to the growing list of influential Democrats endorsing Vice President Kamala Harris as the party’s nominee for president following Joe Biden’s Sunday decision to drop his reelection bid.  In a statement Monday morning, Pritzker said he “spent hours yesterday talking to fellow…

No endorsements from Pritzker, Durbin, Duckworth after Biden drops reelection bid

No endorsements from Pritzker, Durbin, Duckworth after Biden drops reelection bid

By HANNAH MEISEL Capitol News Illinois hmeisel@capitolnewsillinois.com After weeks of pushing from fellow Democrats – including five of Illinois’ members of Congress – President Joe Biden on Sunday announced he will not accept the Democratic Party’s nomination for reelection. Minutes later, he endorsed Vice President Kamala Harris as the party’s nominee ahead of the Democratic…

Illinois elected officials react to Biden’s decision to drop out of race

Illinois elected officials react to Biden’s decision to drop out of race

President Joe Biden announced Sunday he will not accept the Democratic Party’s nomination for president in 2024, and minutes later he endorsed Vice President Kamala Harris. This post will be updated with reaction from Illinois lawmakers. pic.twitter.com/RMIRvlSOYw — Joe Biden (@JoeBiden) July 21, 2024 My fellow Democrats, I have decided not to accept the nomination…

A look inside the RNC: Photos from Milwaukee

A look inside the RNC: Photos from Milwaukee

By ANDREW ADAMS  Capitol News Illinois aadams@capitolnewsillinois.com MILWAUKEE – The Republican National Convention officially wrapped up Thursday night with Donald Trump accepting the GOP nomination for president in 2024.  Throughout the week, Capitol News Illinois’ Andrew Adams was photographing the action, catching moments from the Illinois delegation and other attendees as well as key speeches. …

At national convention, Illinois’ beleaguered GOP portrays calm amid internal storm

At national convention, Illinois’ beleaguered GOP portrays calm amid internal storm

By PETER HANCOCK & HANNAH MEISEL Capitol News Illinois news@capitolnewsillinois.com MILWAUKEE – Illinois Republicans appeared upbeat and optimistic as the GOP’s national convention got underway Monday, calling for unity and showing little sign of the internal party struggles that have been brewing for years. “Everybody’s got a lot of energy. We’re all really hopeful and…

State’s largest privately owned water utilities seek rate increase amid lawmaker scrutiny

State’s largest privately owned water utilities seek rate increase amid lawmaker scrutiny

By ANDREW ADAMS  Capitol News Illinois aadams@capitolnewsillinois.com The two largest privately owned water utilities in Illinois are seeking to raise rates for a combined 1.5 million customers around the state.  Illinois American Water, which serves 1.3 million people, is seeking a $152.4 million rate increase. That corresponds to a $24 per month increase in water…

On party infighting, Illinois’ new GOP chair says ‘start calling those people out’

On party infighting, Illinois’ new GOP chair says ‘start calling those people out’

By HANNAH MEISEL Capitol News Illinois hmeisel@capitolnewsillinois.com MILWAUKEE – In the parlance of Washington D.C. Republican strategists, deep-blue Illinois is sometimes referred to as an “orphan” state – along with other Democratic strongholds like California, New York and Hawaii. In both 2016 and 2020, Donald Trump lost Illinois in the presidential election by 17 percentage…