Volunteers gather for a picture after taking part in Rid Letter Day in Palos Park in 2018. (Photo courtesy of Palos Park)

Volunteers gather for a picture after taking part in Rid Letter Day in Palos Park in 2018. (Photo courtesy of Palos Park)

Palos Park Rid Litter Day is Saturday

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Join volunteers on Saturday, April 23, for Palos Park’s annual Rid Litter Day.

Meet in front of the Recreation Center at 9 a.m. Bags and gloves will be provided. Last year, over 60 volunteers helped clean up over 80 bags of litter from village roadways.

Supplies will be provided at the event.

The first Rid Litter Day was organized in 1997 by the Palos Park Beautification Committee.

Local News

Alyssa Blomberg of the group Ramzi and the Loafers, sings during a performance last year at Orland Park’s inaugural SummerFest. (Photo by Jeff Vorva)

Comings & Goings: Orland Park Summerfest returns this weekend

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Spread the loveBy Bob Bong Back for a second go round this weekend is the Orland Park Area Chamber of Commerce’s Summerfest. The event combines a carnival, live music, an array of dining options and a car show, at the 153rd Street Metra Station location in Orland Park and will run from Friday, June 14,…

Softball stock

Softball | Marist will play for state title for fourth straight season

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Spread the loveBy Randy Whalen Correspondent Marist returned to the state title game for the fourth straight season with a 7-1 victory over Mundelein in the semifinals, held June 7 at Louisville Slugger Sports Complex in Peoria. The Mustangs (36-2) were making their first appearance at state since 1996. “We have a core group of returners,”…

Chicago Red Stars player Penelope Hocking signs autographs before the team's match against Bay FC on June 8 at Wrigley Field. Photo by Xavier Sanchez

Record crowd sees Bay FC top Red Stars at Wrigley Field

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Spread the loveBy Xavier Sanchez Correspondent Historic Wrigley Field hosted its first professional women’s sporting event in 80 years when the Chicago Red Stars hosted Bay FC on June 8. An NWSL-record announced crowd of 35,038  came out on a cool, rainy evening on the North Side and saw the expansion team from the San…

Marist seniors Caroline O’Brien (left) and Camryn Lyons hold the Class 4A state runner-up trophy after St. Charles North defeated the RedHawks, 7-2, in the championship game on June 8 in Peoria. Photo courtesy of Marist High School Athletics

Softball | St. Charles North rides big inning over Marist for Class 4A state title

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Spread the loveBy Randy Whalen Correspondent The final game was in doubt until the late innings but, in the end, Marist came up short in its bid for a second consecutive state championship. St. Charles North (25-6) broke open a tied game by scoring five times with two outs in the bottom of the sixth,…

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

Boys Volleyball | Marist’s Nathen Toth named state finals MVP

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Spread the loveBy Jeff Vorva Correspondent   With the IHSA boys volleyball state semifinals and finals championships held on the same day, the round of four tends to get overshadowed once the smoke clears. But Marist’s 28-26, 26-24 semifinal win over Glenbard West in a battle of two of the top five teams in the…

York's Ben Brown, shown getting ready to serve against Marist in the state championship on June 1, is the son of Chris Brown, who helped Oak Lawn finish fourth in the state in 1993. Photo by Jeff Vorva

Brown family legacy continues in world of Illinois boys volleyball

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Spread the loveBy Jeff Vorva Correspondent The Brown family’s legacy continues in the world of boys volleyball. Twins Chris and Eric Brown helped Oak Lawn finish fourth in the IHSA volleyball tournament in 1993, the second year the boys state tournament took place. Though the twins graduated that year, that season served as a springboard…

Two-time national wrestling champion Austin O'Connor, a St. Rita graduate, won his MMA debut on June 9 in Texas. North Carolina photo

Don’t sleep on grappling great | St. Rita grad Austin O’Connor starts MMA career with a win

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Spread the loveBy Jeff Vorva Correspondent The “Irish Nightmare” was not about to be put to sleep. Austin O’Connor, a four-time IHSA state wrestling champion during his years at St. Rita, made his professional MMA debut on June 9; and despite some pre-match taunting from opponent Camden Fontenot — who claimed he would put O’Connor…

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

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Spread the loveBy 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…

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

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Spread the loveBy 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…

Jennifer Doede

Stagg Athletic Director earns advanced certification 

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Spread the loveFrom 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…

Neighbors

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…

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…