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Palos Park police charge Burbank man for false fire alarms

By Bob Bong / July 2, 2024 /

From staff reports A Burbank man was charged Monday with six counts of felony disorderly conduct for his role in allegedly setting off false fire alarms dating back to March. Palos Park police said they initiated an investigation on March 18 after they were contacted by the Palos Fire Protection District regarding numerous reports of…

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Chicago Ridge Fire Chief Bonnar retires

By Bob Bong / June 27, 2024 / Comments Off on Chicago Ridge Fire Chief Bonnar retires

Started his 50-year career as Orland Park cadet By Dermot Connolly Chicago Ridge Fire Chief William Bonnar officially announced his retirement from a nearly 50-year career at the June 18 Village Board meeting. Mayor Jack Lind made the announcement “with great regret,” joking that “he doesn’t have the age to retire but he decided to…

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Oak Lawn honor Fire and Public Safety Contest winners

By Bob Bong / April 19, 2024 /

By Joe Boyle The Oak Lawn Chamber of Commerce presented awards to the winners of the 2023 Fire and Public Safety Coloring Book Contest at the Oak Lawn Village Board meeting on April 9. Fire Bureau Chief David Wheeler and Police Chief Daniel Vittoro were on hand to present the plaques, along with Oak Lawn Mayor…

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Man dies in Hickory Hills apartment fire

By Bob Bong / January 3, 2024 / Comments Off on Man dies in Hickory Hills apartment fire

By Bob Bong and Nuha Abdessalam The new year had only just begun when tragedy struck families living in a three-story apartment building in Hickory Hills. One man died, a second man was badly injured and several families were displaced by an early morning apartment fire Tuesday. Roberts Park Fire Department Chief Jeff Ketchen said…

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Worth withdraws from Southwest Central Dispatch

By Bob Bong / September 21, 2023 / Comments Off on Worth withdraws from Southwest Central Dispatch

By Joe Boyle The Village of Worth has officially withdrawn from the Southwest Central Dispatch system. An ordinance was approved to drop Southwest Central Dispatch during the Worth Village Board meeting Tuesday night. Another ordinance was approved to withdraw from the Southwest Central 911 system. The village had previously entered into an agreement with Southwest…

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Oak Lawn: Village is in better economic health

By Bob Bong / August 9, 2023 / Comments Off on Oak Lawn: Village is in better economic health

By Joe Boyle After some difficult years due to the pandemic, the economic health of the Village of Oak Lawn is on the rise. Additional funding has gone into the coffers for the Oak Lawn police and fire pensions. Village Manager Tom Phelan admitted during the Oak Lawn Village Board meeting on Aug. 8 that they had…

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Palos Hills enjoys National Night Out

By Kelly White / August 3, 2023 /

By Kelly White Strengthening the relationship between neighbors and local law enforcement, the city of Palos Hills was proud to take part in National Night Out. Palos Hills held its seventh annual National Night Out event on Tuesday at Town Square Park, 8455 W. 103rd Street. “The City of Palos Hills is proud to again…

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Oak Lawn’s ‘Night Out’ is community celebration

By Bob Bong / August 3, 2023 / Comments Off on Oak Lawn’s ‘Night Out’ is community celebration

By Joe Boyle Presentations by the police and fire departments — along with food and music — were the major highlights of the Oak Lawn National Night Out on Tuesday. National Night Out is held the first Tuesday in August. The lone exception is Texas, which marks the occasion in October. National Night Out was…

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Local National Night Out events to celebrate first responders, promote community

By Bob Bong / July 28, 2023 / Comments Off on Local National Night Out events to celebrate first responders, promote community

By Isabella Schreck Many residents will be able to meet their local police officers and police canines, while enjoying food and fun activities at local National Night Out Against Crime events coming up on Tuesday, Aug. 1. The national event, which has occurred every year on the first Tuesday of August for the past four…

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North Palos Fire District starts Fire Buddies chapter 

By Bob Bong / July 16, 2023 / Comments Off on North Palos Fire District starts Fire Buddies chapter 

By Kelly White  Project Fire Buddies brings joy to kids struggling with serious illnesses.  The program launched in 2016 when a group of Oak Forest Firefighters answered a 911 call. A young child who was battling cancer fell ill with a high fever. The department transported the child to the hospital for life-saving treatment, and…

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The Mariano’s store in Frankfort would be among the stores transferred to a new owner if the Kroger-Albertson’s merger is approved. (Photo by Bob Bong)

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

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…

The Oak Lawn Public Library, 9427 S. Raymond Ave., kicked off its adult and teen summer reading season with a Local Author Showcase featuring a book fair and 30 authors June 12. (Photos by Enrique Reyes, Courtesy of the Oak Lawn Public Library)

Oak Lawn Library hosts Local Author Showcase

By Kelly White Oak Lawn Public Library opened its doors to the summer season and to its local authors. The library, 9427 S. Raymond Ave., kicked off its adult and teen summer reading season with a Local Author Showcase featuring a book fair and 30 authors June 12. “Thirty authors, two hours, and lots of…

The retiring owners left this message on the sign at the Saunoris Garden Center in Frankfort. (Photos by Bob Bong)

Comings & Goings: U-Haul buys Saunoris Frankfort location

By Bob Bong Two years after closing its Chicago Ridge location, Saunoris has closed its garden center in Frankfort. U-Haul has acquired the former garden center at 19600 S. Harlem Avenue. No price was announced, but the property had been listed for $2.5 million on real estate websites. The 6.88-acre property, now called U-Haul Moving…

Houston's Natalie Jacobs (left) and Red Star Ally Schlegel jostle to get to the ball on June 6 at SeatGeek Stadium in Bridgeview. Photo by Jeff Vorva

Swanson scores again, Naeher has clean sheet as Fire edge Dash

By Jeff Vorva Correspondent Mallory Swanson is Olympics-ready after scoring her fourth goal in four games. Swanson’s left-footed shot in extra time in the first half was the difference in the Chicago Red Stars’ 1-0 win over Houston on July 6 in an NWSL battle before an announced crowd of 5,566 at SeatGeek Stadium in…

Orland Park's Krysta Stanko (in sunglasses) has won the women's division of the Veterans Liberty run three straight years. Photo by Jeff Vorva

Orland Park woman wins third straight Veterans Liberty Run

By Jeff Vorva Correspondent She did it again. Three for three. Orland Park resident Krysta Stanko won her third straight women’s division championship at the Veterans Liberty Run, held July 3 at Centennial Park in Orland Park. Stanko, an Andrew graduate who will be a sophomore at Governors State, ran the 2-mile course in 12:40.2,…

Worth resident Calista Stefaniak won the Tinley Park Stars and Stripes 5K run for the second year in a row. Photo by Jeff Vorva

Worth resident Calista Stefaniak wins Stars and Stripes 5K

By Jeff Vorva Correspondent Calista Stefaniak won her second straight women’s title in the Tinley Park Stars and Stripes 5K, held June 29 at the village’s McCarthy Park. Stefaniak, 25, of Worth, ran the course in 20:22.6. She also won the event in 2023 and was runner-up in 2022. “I love how it makes me…

Sandburg junior Jackson Canellis has made hundreds of sandwiches for BEDS Plus. He plans to run 12 miles from Wrigley Field to Guaranteed Rate Field to raise money for the organization. Photo supplied

Sandburg junior to run from Wrigley Field to Sox Park

By Jeff Vorva Correspondent Sandburg junior Jackson Canellis isn’t sure if he will be wearing a Cubs or White Sox jersey on Aug. 10 during a 12-mile run. That decision will be up to those who donate to his cause. Canellis, a volunteer at BEDS Plus, is organizing a unique 12-mile run from Wrigley Field…

Pete Fejzuloski, president of the Paisans Pizzeria restaurant chain, cuts the ribbon during the official grand opening ceremonies on June 25 at the Oak Lawn location in the Stony Creek Promenade. He is surrounded by family, employees, and members of the community. To the left of Fejzuloski is Mike Sutko, a member of the Oak Lawn Chamber of Commerce, Trustee William "Bud" Stalker (5th), Mayor Terry Vorderer, Natasha Miller Williams, president of the chamber; and Steve Loulousis, president of the Oak Lawn Parks Foundation. (Photo by Joe Boyle)

Paisans Pizzeria has impressive grand opening in Oak Lawn

Local officials ecstatic about new restaurant By Joe Boyle The origins of Paisans Pizzeria were humble as immigrant Luigi Fejzuloski created the business in a small corner store in Cicero. He was making pizzas in 1985 out of a household kitchen. Soon after that, Luigi was joined by his son, Pete. They both responded to…

The crucifix from St. Bernadette Church was put up outside on an Evergreen Park Fire Department truck before a procession to take it to St. Gianna Parish on Sunday. (Photos by Joe Boyle)

Large gathering attends final St. Bernadette Mass

Emotional parishioners say their final goodbyes By Joe Boyle They arrived from the nearby neighborhood and from communities far away to attend Mass for the final time Sunday morning at St. Bernadette Church in Evergreen Park. The closing of St. Bernadette Church, 9343 S. Francisco Ave., was announced in January of 2022 as part of…

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 summer break. (Supplied photos)

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…

Illinois News

National Committeeman Richard Porter looks ahead to GOP convention as party names new state chair

National Committeeman Richard Porter looks ahead to GOP convention as party names new state chair

By PETER HANCOCK Capitol News Illinois phancock@capitolnewsillinois.com SPRINGFIELD – Republicans will gather in Milwaukee next week for what promises to be a historic national convention. Former President Donald Trump will be nominated for the third consecutive time as the party’s presidential nominee, the first major party candidate to win nomination that many times since Franklin…

Speaker Welch rebuffs lawsuit from would-be staff union as ‘forum shopping’

Speaker Welch rebuffs lawsuit from would-be staff union as ‘forum shopping’

By HANNAH MEISEL Capitol News Illinois hmeisel@capitolnewsillinois.com Illinois House Speaker Emanuel “Chris” Welch is urging a Cook County judge to dismiss a lawsuit members of his staff filed against him last month seeking to force recognition of their union. In a new filing Monday, attorneys for Welch argued the Illinois Legislative Staff Association has no…

The U.N. calls restraint chairs torture. Illinois jails use them every day.

The U.N. calls restraint chairs torture. Illinois jails use them every day.

by GRACE HAUCK ILLINOIS ANSWERS PROJECT Warning: The following article includes mentions of self-harm and profanity. This is the first in a series of stories. McHENRY, Ill. – Vernon L. Brooks Jr. was distraught. Forced into a chair in a jail cell with a black mesh hood over his head, he panicked as he felt…

Pritzker signs health insurance reform measures

Pritzker signs health insurance reform measures

By PETER HANCOCK Capitol News Illinois phancock@capitolnewsillinois.com SPRINGFIELD – Gov. JB Pritzker signed legislation Wednesday that puts new controls on the state’s health insurance industry, including bans on certain practices companies have used to reduce costs by controlling the amount of health care services a patient receives. The Health Care Protection Act, House Bill 5395,…

Transit heads again ask state for funding help, reject proposals for oversight reform

Transit heads again ask state for funding help, reject proposals for oversight reform

By ANDREW ADAMS Capitol News Illinois aadams@capitolnewsillinois.com CHICAGO – It was standing room only in a downtown Chicago committee hearing Tuesday as activists, transit experts and lobbyists hung on the words of the region’s transit agency chiefs.  Public transit has become an increasingly contentious issue in Chicagoland as the Regional Transportation Authority – the funding…

SCOTUS ruling could upend federal corruption cases for Madigan, allies

SCOTUS ruling could upend federal corruption cases for Madigan, allies

By HANNAH MEISEL Capitol News Illinois hmeisel@capitolnewsillinois.com The U.S. Supreme Court on Wednesday narrowed the scope of a federal bribery law prosecutors have relied on in their cases against former Illinois House Speaker Michael Madigan and several of his allies convicted of bribing him. A jury last spring found those allies – former lobbyists and…

Former GOP state lawmaker, candidate for governor sentenced to 42 months in prison

Former GOP state lawmaker, candidate for governor sentenced to 42 months in prison

By HANNAH MEISEL Capitol News Illinois hmeisel@capitolnewsillinois.com SPRINGFIELD – Former Republican State Sen. Sam McCann on Tuesday was sentenced to 42 months in federal prison for stealing nearly $700,000 in campaign funds and attempting to conceal his theft with false reports to state election authorities. In February, McCann pleaded guilty to seven counts of wire…

Menard prison staff picket, citing unsafe working conditions

Menard prison staff picket, citing unsafe working conditions

By MOLLY PARKER Capitol News Illinois   mparker@capitolnewsillinois.com Hundreds of Menard Correctional Center employees and their supporters staged a rally alongside a busy street in Chester on Monday, highlighting what they described as perilous working conditions at the state’s largest maximum-security prison.   The problems at the southern Illinois facility stem from low staffing levels, said…

Pritzker ‘all in’ for Biden following visit to White House last week

Pritzker ‘all in’ for Biden following visit to White House last week

By JERRY NOWICKI Capitol News Illinois jnowicki@capitolnewsillinois.com Gov. JB Pritzker said Tuesday he is “all in” for President Joe Biden after visiting the White House last week with other Democratic governors.  He headed to Washington, D.C., to meet with the president and members of the Democratic Governors Association last Wednesday on the heels of Biden’s…

Illinois switching to ACT exams for state assessments

Illinois switching to ACT exams for state assessments

By PETER HANCOCK Capitol News Illinois phancock@capitolnewsillinois.com SPRINGFIELD – When Illinois high school students sit down to take their annual state assessments next year, they will take a different exam than in recent years. The Illinois State Board of Education recently announced that starting next spring, it will use the ACT exam rather than the…