Letter: Tollway system is embarrassment

I don’t know if I should admire or feel sorry for Reps. Chapin Rose (R-Mahomet) and David Reis (R-Willow Hill) when they say that they are co-sponsoring legislation that would require the toll authority to send violation notices out within 30 days.

Just the fact that they have to introduce this kind of legislation shows what citizens of our state have known for some time: Our legislators in Springfield have lost all control of the very agency that their colleagues put in place during the 1950s. To support my accusation, just a few weeks ago officers at the toll authority told Gov. Pat Quinn that they didn’t need his or anyone else’s approval to hire a director for their Downers Grove Taj Mahal office.

Like many of our state legislators, Reps Rose and Reis don’t see the real problem at the toll authority. It’s not just sending violation notices, but all the corruption we hear about several times throughout the year.

Within the last two years, we saw the moving of tens of millions of dollars from tollbooth collections to the state treasury, the doubling of the toll/tax for those not buying an I-Pass, the monstrous fines for drivers not watching the expiration date on their credit card and the awarding of top management with 54 to 90 percent salary increases.

If Rep’s Rose and Reis really want to do some good, they should go after this violation legislation, get together with Gov. Quinn and convince him to support legislation that would get rid of the toll/tax from our highways once and for all. The tollway system has been an embarrassment long enough for citizens of Illinois. Starting to work on no-toll legislation now will insure that we will be ready when the economy comes around in a few years.

If citizens feel the way that I do, they should visit the website www.notolls-illinois.com.

Russell Johnson
Sugar Grove

Letter: Thanks for successful Maple Park Meet the Candidates Night

I would like to thank the candidates and residents of Maple Park for making the 2009 Maple Park “Meet the Candidate” night a success.

Several dozen residents attended and were given an opportunity to hear about qualifications, accomplishments and future vision from each candidate—Ross Dueringer and Kathleen Curtis, both running for the one village president position, and Suzanne Fahnestock, Terry Borg and myself, who are running for the three village trustee positions.

During the questions and answers session, residents received responses from the candidates on topics such as developer fees and police department funding and also provided suggestions on possible options for emergency communication and rain water control via curb cuts and drainage gardens.

Debra Armstrong
Maple Park Village Trustee

Letter: Blood donors respond in Sugar Grove

Someone needed you, and you answered the call with your much appreciated blood donations. The Sugar Grove Firefighters Auxiliary, the Sugar Grove Fire Department, the Heartland Blood Center staff and all of our extra helpers made our blood drive so successful.

We send a heartfelt “thank you” for sharing the gift of life to our donors: Carolyn Abruzzo, Jane Alabastro, Robyn Anderson, Jeff Babich, Robert Barbush, Patrick Barry, Kate Boehmer, Steve Boehmer, Charles Brummet, Julio Calabrese, Ronaelle Carlson, Mike Dabney, Scott Dabney, Jon Diaz, Lee Drendal, Jim Eckert, Kevin Ellis, Fred Felella, Margit Fotre, Laura Gerling, Steve Good, Rebecca Hollenbach, Laura Keske, Kevin Klein, Ed Malert, Scott Marczuk, Erin Matthews, Andy Maurer, Lori McCaffrey, Sally McClellan, Suzanne McCraken, Gregory McMullen, Scott Meister, Sean Michels, Allyson Miller, John Murphy, Clarence Nolan, Erin Novotny, Patrick Perez, Brian Pope, Ian Proce, Nicole Pryor, Cathryn Rodgers, Jason Rose, Kelly Ryan, Brian Schiber, Erin Schiber, Damon Schultz, Stan Schumacher, Beth Sheehan, Clyde Smith, Shanda Snodgrass, Don Sommerville, Carrie Spillane, Susan Stachowiak, Jeff Steenwyk, Renee Tonioni, Blake Torphy, Colleen Warner, Dana Weber, Barbara Wolf, Annette Wood, Craig Zabel, James Zablocki, Scott Zaeske, Steve Zick, and Jessica Zukaski.

We also deeply appreciate those who attempted but were unable to donate blood. The next Sugar Grove blood is drive is scheduled for Monday, Sept. 14, 2009.

Joy Rubo
Blood Drive Coordinator
Sugar Grove

Letter: To the Kaneland community

On Saturday, April 18, 2009, the last event in the year-long celebration of the 50th anniversary of Kaneland High School, other than the actual graduation of the 50th Class in May, will take place.

Kaneland community members, but especially Kaneland alumni, are invited to attend. The event is taking place in association with the Kaneland Community Fine Arts Festival.

Saturday evening, starting at 6 p.m., a gallery of student and professional art will be open for viewing before the Fine Arts Festival the next day.

The main event will commence at 7 p.m. with a presentation by John Powers, a very popular speaker and author. John will offer his reflections and insights on growing up in the Chicago area and lessons learned from his family and teachers. John is a graduate of Northwestern University; created and produced the Broadway Musical “Do Black Patent Leather Shoes Really Reflect Up”; has hosted a PBS series regarding effective public speaking, and has received two Emmy Awards for his work. John will make you laugh.

Kaneland choir and band ensembles, along with Kaneland alumna and professional vocalist, Christine Heath, a member of the KHS Class of 1991, will entertain the audience for the second half of the evening with a sampling of songs from the musicals KHS students have put on during the 50 years since Kaneland High School was opened in 1958.

The evening will end with a Kaneland tradition when Kaneland choral alumni are asked to join the current KHS Choir in the singing of “The Lord Bless and Keep You.” The evening will provide an enjoyable conclusion to the year-long celebration of KHS’s first 50 years.

There is no charge for this event. However, seating will be on a first-come, first-served basis. If needed, overflow seating will be available in a large room at KHS to which the evening’s events will be broadcast.

Charles McCormick
Superintendent of Schools
Kaneland CUSD 302

Change in leadership for Elburn, MP; SG re-elects Michels

The villages of Elburn and Maple Park will soon see a new face in the village president’s chair; while Sugar Grove will continue under the leadership of re-elected Village President Sean Michels.

In Elburn, no matter who the voters supported, the top spot would be someone new. Longtime Village President Jim Willey announced last fall he would not seek re-election, and Village Board member Patricia Romke and Blackberry Township Supervisor David Anderson ran to replace him.

Not only did voters overwhelmingly support Anderson—he won with nearly 80 percent of the vote—they supported the concept of overall change by voting in three new Village Board members: Kenneth Anderson, Joseph (Jerry) Schmidt and Jeffrey Walter. Incumbents Tom Burgholzer and Jeff Humm were both defeated, while Craig Swan, who held the third open seat, chose not to run for re-election.

According to Anderson’s statement to Elburn Herald reporter Martha Quetsch, he intends to hit the ground running after he is sworn in later this month, with plans to do “a lot of little things that will add up to major changes.”

We are interested to see what those little things will be—he wouldn’t tell us—but we are glad to hear that the Anderson Road bridge and extension is considered a top priority.

Based on the voting results in Maple Park, it appears as if the village is pretty evenly split. The Kane County side of the village voted for the incumbent, Ross Dueringer, 107-84; while the DeKalb County side backed challenger Kathleen Curtis by a 92-51 margin. The difference gave Curtis the victory by a slim, 18-vote margin.

With newcomers Debra Armstrong and Suzanne Fahnestock joining the Village Board, Curtis told Elburn Herald reporter Lynn Meredith that she intends to begin by reorganizing the committees and coming up with a process to address the various issues facing the village.

We hope that the Police Department, which has no police chief and no articulated plan to deal with its staffing issues, rises to the top of that list of issues.

Voters in Sugar Grove chose to retain Village President Sean Michels by nearly a 2-to-1 margin. His clear-cut victory, combined with the fact that two of the Village Board candidates, Robert Bohler and Tom Renk, were re-elected, gives a clear indication that the voters believe the current Sugar Grove leadership is doing a good job in their roles.

Michels told Elburn Herald reporter Susan O’Neill that he intends to see the village remain active during the current housing and economic slowdown, focusing on improving the village’s infrastructure and adjusting growth projections and existing fees—all with an eye on working to draw economic development.

“We just need to get out and sell Sugar Grove over the next four years,” Michels told O’Neill.

We hope that effort pays off, because bringing commercial and industrial development into the village will be vital to advancing the quality of life in the community.

We applaud everyone who ran for office—win or lose—because a strong desire to help improve your community will only help as everyone struggles with tightening budgets and the additional strains caused by our current economic climate.

We also applaud everyone who took the time to get to know the issues and candidates, and turned that information into a well-informed vote.

To help each community navigate the challenges of economic stagnation, on the heels of the challenges of unprecedented growth, it will take a growing number of people willing to give their time and effort, for little monetary return, to pitch in and help. Whether that comes in the form or running for office, volunteering, attending meetings or just staying informed, strong, successful communities are truly a group effort.

Stepping the stones to success

by Lynn Meredith
When Christine Heath stepped out of Kaneland High School in 1991, she did not know where her path would lead. As she pursued training and developed her talent, she eventually stepped her way into a remarkable performing career.

Kaneland audiences will have two opportunities to see her perform when she sings at the 50th Anniversary Convocation on Saturday, April 18, and headlines the Kaneland Community Fine Arts Festival on Sunday, April 19.

Known as Christine Marie Heath, this Kaneland alumna is a soprano who performs nationally and internationally. She calls herself a crossover artist because she has the ability to perform musical theater as well as opera.

Heath grew up in Kaneville, and at a young age knew she wanted to sing. Kaneland at that time did not have a large musical theater department, so Heath joined the choir and performed in the Madrigals.

“I knew at a very young age that I wanted to be a singer. I knew I was born to do this,” Heath said. “There was very little for the arts when I was (at Kaneland). We had the two gyms and did only one musical the entire four years I was there.”

Heath credits her choir director, Bonnie Bray, for being supportive and a big influence on her. She and another Kaneland student became involved in the Glen Ellyn Children’s Choir from eighth grade into high school. As a 13-year-old, she started traveling to Scandinavia, Seattle and many other places performing with the choir.

“It was an amazing experience. It helped me blossom. I was able to get out of my box and see the world,” Heath said.

In college at Illinois State University, Heath was still unsure which way to take her music. She sang with the choir for three years. Then, her senior year, the ISU music department decided to put on an opera.

“It was a big thing for them to put on an opera. I got a small role, and I fell in love,” she said.

From then on, Heath was hooked. She enjoyed operas because of their historical significance and the challenge of learning languages well enough to sing convincingly.

“Opera has all the components—lighting, costume, the learning of languages. (Learning languages) was huge for me, a real challenge. I was up for the challenge,” Heath said. “The history of the works that went back so far, back to a distant time and place, really struck me. Opera is more sophisticated than musical theater. You want to know more. It’s unique.”

The next step for Heath was to leave ISU and the Midwest behind and study with her voice teacher’s teacher at the Maryland Opera Studio at the University of Maryland. Here, she was able to delve into both opera and theater.

“I was handed off in a safe way. I was not ready to pack my bags and go to New York City. I felt like it was the next step geographically,” Heath said. “I needed tons of training. I took Italian, Czech, French, German. I studied stage combat, Shakespeare, acting, improvisation and dance. I was able to get enveloped in my art.”

When she graduated with her master’s degree in 1998, Heath knew that she wanted to take the next step and move to New York. She moved to Brooklyn, learned the subway maps and got to know other performers.

“I got in with other singers. The singing world is a small world. I also got a good taste of the starving artist lifestyle. I had temp jobs and waitressing jobs. I remember scraping up change to go to McDonald’s,” Heath said.
Her break came when she got an apprenticeship with Sarasota Opera in Sarasota, Fla.

“From there it just spiraled,” Heath said. “They asked me back for a second season. Then Ohio Light Opera saw me. It became all about connections and all about work ethic.”

When conductors and directors saw her talent and ability to work hard in her roles, the parts started coming in. She could call a conductor she had worked with and ask him to put in a good word for her with another conductor.

“My whole career is about connections or being handed from one person to another,” she said.

Heath learned that she can manage her career as well as a professional manager could and save herself the 5 percent a manager would take. She keeps herself fresh in the minds of directors and conductors by updating them about her career through e-mail.

These days, at age 36, Heath’s priorities have shifted somewhat. She now has two sons, Jake, 4, and Sam, 3, who take up much of her time. As for her career, she pursues it part-time.

“It’s my priority to be home with them. I’m not one to go off and do a bus tour. I target auditions in the Tri-State area where I can either come home on weekends or bring the kids along and hire a nanny,” Heath said.

She lives one hour north of New York City. She focuses on roles that will run only three to six weeks and that are leading parts.

“I’m OK with doing it part-time, but then I want leads. I’ve been playing leads for 10 years. I don’t want to go back to ‘Chorus Girl #4,’” she said.

She does, however, have concerts scheduled this year, one at Trinity Church on Wall Street, and the other, Kaneland Community Fine Arts Festival.

She will sing selections from musicals performed at Kaneland over the last 50 years at the Anniversary Convocation on Saturday evening, April 18, and perform an hour concert during the Fine Arts Festival on Sunday, April 19. Her concert is entitled “The Emotions of Love” and includes humorous musical theater pieces about the roller coaster ride of love. Both performances will take place in the auditorium.

Heath will also teach a master class to Kaneland students.

“I am more than happy to be able to give back to my school. It was the best place to grow up. I wouldn’t trade it for the world,” Heath said.

From the farm to your house with the click of a mouse

by Gwen Allen
With all the worries and headlines about hormones, pesticides and preservatives, it is no surprise that a “healthy” demand for fresh food is on the rise.

Though gaining in popularity and shelf space, organics at the supermarket provide a healthy alternative, but at a price. Similarly, cultivating a garden comes with a cost, only it’s physical. This is a price too steep for some, who either end up back in the organic aisle for convenience or give up all together.

But there is no need to break the bank or even a back for a fresh plate of food, when it may be as easy as a click away.

In an attempt to “promote all aspects of agriculture and advocate good stewardship of our land and resources,” Kane County Farm Bureau compiled a list of farm markets throughout the county and put them all in one accessible place, www.kanecfb.com/bounty.html.

Visitors of the site will find locations, hours of operation and even a map to help plan a trip to more than 35 participating farms.

“This gives the public a source, 24 hours a day, for fresh produce and along with many other items offered by Kane County farmers,” said Steve Arnold, manager of Kane County Farm Bureau. “It’s also good because it helps local business (by keeping money local) and it is common knowledge that fresher produce has better flavor and higher nutritional value.”

With approximately 450,000 people in the county, Arnold said the website is an affordable way to educate the public of the “county’s wares”.

“We have been doing a directory of farmer markets for over 10 years (on paper), but adding it online sort of gave it a pizzazz,” Arnold said. “Now people don’t have to search for a piece of paper when they have a website in a usable format.”

Beyond produce, he said the site promotes all farmers who wish to sell from their farm.

“Any farm that sells direct to consumers (and is a member of the Farm Bureau) qualifies for the directory,” Arnold said. “From Christmas trees, apples, honey, straw, meat and eggs, consumers can find a little bit of everything. We want people to know there is a variety of agriculture in Kane County that is available to them.”

Like the Kane County Farm Bureau, the Illinois Department of Agriculture also provides a list of farmer’s markets; though some may not sell directly from the farm their product was produced.

“Some (vendors) are informal, where they just sell produce from a cart on a street corner, while others are more organized,” said Delayne Reeves, a marketing representative from the Illinois Department of Agriculture. “Most are community markets, where multiple vendors come together to sell. Some also sell crafts or anything else that they have produced or packaged within Illinois.”

With more than 350 listed vendors, the listing was designed by the Illinois Department of Agriculture to ultimately promote the specialty crop industry, while providing consumers with a healthy source of produce, Reeves said.

The Illinois Department of Agriculture’s website for farmer’s markets is www.agr.state.il.us/agrihappenings/farmers.php.

Gianni Anthony Middona

Joe and Miranda Middona of Elburn are happy to announce the birth of their son, Gianni Anthony, who was born March 26, 2009, at Delnor Community Hospital in Geneva. He weighed 7 pounds, 5 ounces, and was 19.5 inches long.

The proud grandparents are Roger and Donna Ronzheimer of St. Charles and Leonard and Linda Middona of Bartlett.

Brynley Paige Schrader

Troy and Shari (Shaw) Schrader of Sugar Grove are happy to announce the birth of their daughter, Brynley Paige, who was born March 29, 2009, in Delnor-Community Hospital in Geneva. She weighed 6 pounds, 11 ounces and was 18.5 inches long.

The proud grandparents are Rollin and Sara Shaw of Sugar Grove and Gerald and Caryl Schrader of Maple Park.

Brynley is welcomed by twin sisters Jade and Madison, age 3.

Hartmann earns scholarship

Holly Hartmann of Maple Park is the recipient of a $1,000 freshman scholarship presented by Nebraska Farm Bureau.

Hartmann is studying agricultural business at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.

Hartmann and others who received Farm Bureau scholarships were honored at a recognition dinner March 30 in Lincoln, NE, hosted by the University of Nebraska Foundation.

Local students named to Augustana College winter term Dean’s List

Sara Michelle Bihner, Matthew Bowman and Patrick Manser of Elburn, and Tara Czepiel and Elizabeth Shollenberger of Sugar Grove, have been named to the Dean’s List at Augustana College for the 2009 winter term. Students who have earned this academic honor have maintained a grade point average of 3.5 or higher on a four-point scale.

Loretta A. Schramer

Loretta A. Schramer, 87, of Virgil, passed away at her home, surrounded by the love of her family, on Sunday, April 5, 2009. Though her body battled and lost, Loretta claims the victory of her Savior and walks among the angels in Heaven.

She was born on the family farm, January 17, 1922, the daughter of John and Margaret (Loerzel) Schmitt in Virgil, Ill.

Loretta was no stranger when it came to hard work while growing up on the farm. She cooked and cleaned for her family, as well as many others, all while attending S.S. Peter and Paul Catholic School.

Loretta caught the eye of the “boy next door,” Matt Schramer, who literally lived on the farm next door. Before long they shared a love that blossomed into marriage on Oct. 7, 1940, at S.S. Peter and Paul Catholic Church in Virgil.

Shortly after they exchanged vows, Loretta and Matt moved to the Klingbeil Farm on Lees Road, where Matt worked as manager. In 1958, the family moved to Virgil on Meredith Road. On Dec. 19, 2001, Matt passed away. Loretta continued to live in the family home filling it with family and memories that will be cherished by all.

Loretta was a faithful member the church as well as the Altar and Rosary Society at S.S. Peter and Paul Catholic Church in Virgil. She also counted thousands of votes working as an election judge for over 25 years.

In her younger years, Loretta could be found playing the guitar at local hometown talent shows and barn dances. She even heard herself on the radio. Family was paramount to Loretta, and homemade sticky buns were the physical manifestation of that love; everyone had their own pan during the holidays. Birthday cards always contained an “I love you” as well as the prerequisite $5, and each birthday and anniversary were laid out in what eventually became a very crowded calendar.

Loretta and Matt played many rounds of rummy every night, even though he almost always lost. When company came, the game changed to Pitch and her dominance continued. When asked what made her family so special, Loretta didn’t hesitate with a litany of reasons and numerous blessings. Many times when there is a large family, there can be friction between siblings and their own families, but not the Schramers. Almost all of them lived within 25 miles of each other, and they all came running when one of them was in need. This is the legacy of love and loyalty that Loretta instilled into her children and one that they have passed on to their children and grandchildren.

She now leaves her seven children, Sister Mary Louise Schramer O.S.F. of Virgil, Dorothy (Pat) Burnell of Marseilles, Ill., Jane (Dutch) Phillips of Kaneville, Sue (Cork) Phillips of Sycamore, Lorraine (Guy) Nicoll of Allen, Texas, Jim (Pam) Schramer of Argyle, Wis., and Mike (Teri) Schramer of Elgin; 18 grandchildren; 24 great-grandchildren; five siblings, Frances Colsten of Aurora, Ralph Schmitt of Loyal, Wis., Jean (George) Ramer of DeKalb, John (Diane) Schmitt of Hampshire, Ill., and Robert (Janice) Schmitt of Hampshire; four sisters-in-law, Clara Schmitt of Maple Park, Catherine Schramer of Virgil, Angela Lexa of Sycamore, Marion Umbdenstock of Bartlet, Ill.; two brothers-in-law, Vern Warber of Sycamore, Deacon Joseph Schramer of Apple Valley, Minn., and a community of friends and neighbors who will miss her greatly.

She now joins her husband, Matt; her parents and six siblings, Katherine McDonald, Louis Schmitt, Esther Warber, Nicholas Schmitt, Margaret Bewsey, and Elizabeth Sauber, who preceded her in death.

Visitation was at S.S. Peter and Paul Parish Center on Meredith Road, Tuesday, April 7. A wake service concluded visitation. A mass to celebrate her life was held Wednesday, April 8; following a time of visitation. Fr. Perfecto Vasquez, pastor of the church, officiated, and interment followed at S.S. Peter and Paul Cemetery. A video recording of the service will be available at www.conleycare.com the following day in an “on-demand” format.

A memorial has been established in her name to benefit American Diabetes Association. Checks may be made to the “Loretta Schramer Memorial” and mailed in care of P.O. Box 66, Elburn, IL 60119. Tributes and memories may also be forwarded to the family at the same address or through www.conleycare.com.

Calvary Episcopal sets Holy Week services

Calvary Episcopal Church announces the following schedule of special services through Easter Sunday, April 12. The public is invited to all services and special events.

On Maundy Thursday, April 9, the church will hold a morning prayer and reflection service at 9:30 a.m.; a 6 p.m. Simple Agape Supper; at 7 p.m. a Liturgy of the Lord’s Supper, including ceremonial foot washing, procession and watch opportunity until midnight, at which time the church will hold a Night Prayer at the Altar of Repose.

On Good Friday, April 10, the church will hold a 9:30 a.m. morning prayer and reflection; a community ecumenical service at noon; Traditional Stations of the Cross at 3 p.m., and Solemn Liturgy of the Lord’s Passion and Death at 7 p.m.

Holy Saturday, on April 11, will feature a morning prayer, reflection and preparation of the Pascal Candle at 9:30 a.m.; and Great Vigil of Easter, including Salvation History and Renewal of Baptismal Vows at 7:30 p.m.

On Easter Sunday, April 12, the church scheduled a sunrise service at Logan Street Baptist Church at 6 a.m.; a Festival Holy Communion Service with Renewal of Baptismal Vows, followed by Festive Coffee Hour after each service at 8 and 10:15 a.m.

Calvary is located at 222 S. Batavia Ave., at the corner of Route 31 and Main Street. The Rev. Michael Rasicci, rector of Calvary, will officiate and preach at each worship service. For more information, call or visit www.calvary-episcopal.org.

Immanuel Lutheran hosts Easter breakfast

A tradition of more than 50 years will be repeated Easter morning when high school students at Immanuel Lutheran Church serve the annual Easter breakfast.

The buffet-style meal is served between 7:45 and 9:15 a.m. in the church’s Fellowship Hall between the first and second Easter services.

The teens are preparing to serve more than 200 people with a full breakfast including fruit, a breakfast casserole of eggs, meat and cheese, pancakes and sausage, coffee cakes, coffee, milk and juice. Tickets are $5 each and may be purchased in the church office, 950 Hart Road, or by calling the church (630) 879-7163. Proceeds will go toward youth attending the triennial Lutheran Youth Gathering in 2010 in New Orleans.

More than 30 high school students and at least 15 parents set up and decorate tables on Saturday and prepare and serve the Easter morning breakfast. They also arrive about 5 a.m. Sunday to get ready for the meal three hours later.

The breakfast is coordinated by Kari Larsen, Immanuel’s Youth Director.

Rejoice Lutheran announces Holy Week service schedule

Rejoice Lutheran Church welcomes the community to its worship services during Holy Week. Both the Maundy Thursday service on April 9 and the Good Friday service on April 10 will be held at 7 p.m.

Easter Sunday services on April 12 will be held at 8, 9 and 10:30 a.m. The high school youth group will host a breakfast Easter morning from 8:30 a.m. to noon. The breakfast will include pancakes, eggs, sausage, fruit, coffee and orange juice. All proceeds from a free will offering will go toward the high school mission trip this summer.

Rejoice Lutheran Church is located at 0N377 N. Mill Creek Drive in Geneva. For more information, call (630) 262-0596 or visit www.rejoiceinthemission.org.

Sugar Grove UMC offers Seder Meal

The Sensory Experience of the Seder Meal will be offered during Holy Week on Thursday, April 9, at 7 p.m. at Sugar Grove United Methodist Church, 176 Main St. in Sugar Grove.

This candlelight Passover observance is shared as a symbolic family meal to give insights to the ways Jesus and his disciples followed this Jewish custom.

This is also known as “The Last Supper.” Following scripture and tradition, the church will will use its ears and taste buds to remember and celebrate God’s acts of salvation for God’s people, including the significance of Jesus Christ in people’s lives.

No reservation is required for this free event.

The church will also host a Good Friday worship for area churches, including Kaneville United Methodist and Grace United Methodist of Maple Park, on Friday, April 10, at 7 p.m. The candlelight service, recalling the suffering and crucifixion of Christ, will feature live music—piano, cello, violin, oboe— singing, scripture readings, silent prayer, and projected images for the worshipers.

For more information on either event, call (630) 466-4501.

Kaneville UMC sets Holy Week services

Maundy Thursday Service will be held April 9, 7 p.m. at Kaneville United Methodist Church. The traditional worship service will feature a drama message and Holy Communion.

A Good Friday Kaneland Clergy Ecumenical Service is Friday, April 10, at 7 p.m. at Sugar Grove United Methodist Church, 176 S. Main St.

Easter-Resurrection Sunday Service is April 12, at 8 and 10:30 a.m. at Kaneville United Methodist.

For more information, please call (630) 557-2353.

April 7 Elburn election results

The following unofficial results are courtesy of Kane County. Winners are listed in bold.

Elburn Village President

David L. Anderson 666
Patricia Romke 167

Elburn Village Board

Vote for three
Robert P. Swartz 275
Kenneth N. Anderson, Jr. 394
Jeffrey A. Humm 250
Jeffrey D. Walter 307
David Gualdoni 281
Joseph (Jerry) Schmidt 374
Tom Burgholzer 288

Elburn and Countryside Fire Protection District

Thomas F. Reynolds     1086
Richard L. Herra, Jr.     845

April 7 Sugar Grove election results

The following unofficial results are courtesy of Kane County. Winners are listed in bold.

Sugar Grove Village President

P. Sean Michels    957
Perry “PC” Clark    514

Sugar Grove Village Board

Joseph R. Wolf    600
Robert E. Bohler    733
David Paluch    601
Rick Montalto    627
Thomas F. Renk    661
Mary E. Heineman (Write-in): 450

Sugar Grove Community House Board

Vote for three
Stan L. Schumacher    957
Dan Long    938
Lillie Adams    1077

Tim M. Wilson    875

Sugar Grove Public Library Board

6-year term
Art Morrical    1352

Sugar Grove Public Library Board

Unexpired 4-year term
Joan R. Roth    942
Sabrina Malano    545

Sugar Grove Public Library Board

Unexpired 2-year term
William Wulff    327
Julie K. Wilson    794
Christina Cella    389

Sugar Grove Public Library Referendum

Yes    770
No    1277

April 7 Maple Park election results

The following unofficial results are courtesy of Kane and DeKalb counties. Winners are listed in bold.

Maple Park Village President

Ross Dueringer    158
Kathleen Curtis    176

Maple Park Village Board

Vote for three
Debra M. Armstrong    133
Suzanne A. Fahnestock    120
Terry E. Borg    129

Maple Park Tax referendum

Yes    88
No    234

April 7 Blackberry Township election results

The following unofficial results are courtesy of Kane county. Winners are listed in bold.

Blackberry Township Supervisor

David C. Richmond    1068

Blackberry Township Clerk

Lisa L. Hodge    1084

Blackberry Township Assessor

Uwe Rotter    799
Bonnie Wilcox    497

Blackberry Township Highway Commissioner

Rodney L. Feece    1130

Blackberry Township Board

Vote for four
James Roy Feece    949
James K. Michels    938
Timothy W. Norris    925
Harley Veldhuizen    887

April 7 Kaneville Township election results

The following unofficial results are courtesy of Kane county. Winners are listed in bold.

Kaneville Township Supervisor

Leon F. Gramley    246

Kaneville Township Clerk

Kimberly Wendling    251

Kaneville Township Assessor

Margaret Mangers    216

Kaneville Township Highway Commissioner

Dennis Long    158
Gary L. Koehring    133

Kaneville Township Board

Vote for four
Daniel Ebert    204
Daniel Kahl    236
Glenn Fuchs    210
Vernon Long    185

April 7 Virgil Township election results

The following unofficial results are courtesy of Kane county. Winners are listed in bold.

Virgil Township Supervisor

Judith K. Yagen    359

Virgil Township Clerk

Kenneth L. Gilkey    334

Virgil Township Assessor

Michael M. Yagen    354

Virgil Township Highway Commissioner

Larry E. Peterson    375

Virgil Township Board

Vote for four
James A. Diehl    278
Mary P. Kahl    289

David S. Stewart    180
Peter Fabrizius    299
Theodore A. Janecek    231

Virgil Township Road District Referendum

Yes     213
No    197

REGISTRATION NOW REQUIRED TO POST ON ELBURNHERALD.COM

Due to rampant abuse of our up-to-now open comment system, we have no choice but to require registration (with an accurate e-mail) before allowing individuals to post on ElburnHerald.com.

The main reason? Many posts from individuals claiming to be multiple individuals, vulgar language, false accusations, and no accountability.

We initially wanted the user experience on ElburnHerald.com to be open, encouraging dialogue about the Kaneland area and the issues that affect you every day. Therefore we did not require registration. We have learned from our mistakes, as clearly our idealism was taken advantage of.

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Web Editor
www.elburnherald.com

Kaneland Knights baseball remembers

2-1 Knights pay tribute to friends on Opening Day, retire Malewig’s jersey
by Mike Slodki
This opening day was unlike any other, for bittersweet reasons.

There were smiles and tears throught Thursday’s contest between Kaneland and Burlington Central on the diamond, as Kaneland fans and players remembered Jeff Malewig and Blake Denton, who died in a car accident in December.

Before the contest, a moment of silence was observed, KHS coach Brian Aversa led Jeff’s father Tom out to the left field wall where a plaque with Jeff’s number 41 is now placed. The foul poles are now adorned with “BD” and “JM”.

The day’s events, capped by a large crowd in Maple Park, crystalized the relationship between Malewig and the rest of the team.

“He kept them laughing, that’s for sure,” Tom Malewig said. “They all love him. They’re playing real hard out there and from what I can see, it’ll last a while. It’s hard not to get affected by today.”

Wearing jerseys with “41” patches and red wristbands (for Malewig’s love of the St. Louis Cardinals), the Knights took care of business on Thursday against the Burlington Central Rockets by a final of 6-0. Lefty Jeff Smith pitched five innings and righty Steve Colombe finished the final two for a combined three-hitter.

On Saturday, Marmion Academy bested Kaneland in Aurora by a 5-2 final, and the Knights recovered on Monday to handle hosting Plainfield Central 7-3 in eight innings.

The 2009 Kaneland baseball squad will sport a "41" patch on their jersey sleeves and an embroidered "41" on thier caps in honor of Jeff Malewig, who was killed in a car accident last year. Malewig's jersey number 41 was retired by Kaneland in a ceremony March 26. In addition, the initials "JM" for Malewig, and "BD" for Blake Denton, who was also killed in the same accident, will be featured on the outfield foul poles.<em> Photos by Sarah Rivers</em>
The 2009 Kaneland baseball squad will sport a "41" patch on their jersey sleeves and an embroidered "41" on thier caps in honor of Jeff Malewig, who was killed in a car accident last year. Malewig's jersey number 41 was retired by Kaneland in a ceremony March 26. In addition, the initials "JM" for Malewig, and "BD" for Blake Denton, who was also killed in the same accident, will be featured on the outfield foul poles. Photos by Sarah Rivers

Against the Rockets, Joe Gura kicked things off in the bottom of the third with an RBI double and Mike Pritchard hit an RBI groundout for a 2-0 lead. Jake Fiedler smacked an RBI double in the fifth to add on to the lead.

Smith felt his outing was a good way to set the tone for the future.

“We defeated a good team today, and I thought my curveball and control were pretty good,” Smith said.

But the afternoon was about a teammate no longer there.

“We didn’t feel whole out there,” Aversa said. “It didn’t feel right. (Jeff) completed a part of us. It was great to us play with emotion and it was a special day.”

The sophomores fell to Burlington Central, 8-2.

Against the Cadets, Gura was tagged with the loss.

The Knights’ Colombe earned the win against the Wildcats, while Fiedler went 2-for-6. Pritchard went 2-for-4 with a double and two runs driven in.

KHS hits downstate Illinois and beyond for spring break, beginning with a game at Springfield High School on Thursday, April 2, and a game in Farmington, Mo., on Friday, April 3.

Anderson, Romke vie for village president seat

by Martha Quetsch
Elburn voters will elect the first new Village President in more than 12 years on April 7. Vying for the seat being vacated by Jim Willey are Dave Anderson and Patricia Romke. Both candidates have experience in business and local government. Romke is a Realtor and an Elburn village trustee and Anderson is the former owner of The Grocery Store in Elburn and is the Blackberry Township Supervisor.

Dave Anderson
Anderson decided not to seek re-election in April to the Blackberry Township Supervisor seat he has held for more than 10 years. Instead, he is running for Elburn Village Board president at the encouragement of local residents, he said.

“I have been approached by so many people who have asked me to run,” Anderson said.

If elected, he will encourage more involvement by trustees, which is his style, he said.

“I am a hands-on type of person and would take a very active role in what’s happening in the village,” he said.

Another reason he is running for the office is that he loves the town and its people, he said.

Anderson owned The Grocery Store in downtown Elburn for 28 years. During that time and since, he has gone to the Kountry Kettle every morning for about an hour, talking with other residents about community issues, he said.

One issue that residents have asked him about is recreation in the village.

“I have been asked what my feeling is about a park district. I say, yes, someday we’re going to have one. No way at this point in time. It would require a referendum, and nobody is going to vote for another line item on their tax bill right now.”

Anderson is not a newcomer to village government. He was a village trustee in the 1970s when the Village Board established a land-use plan, built the wastewater treatment plant, and hired its first village administrator.

His other local government experience includes serving as past president of Kaneland District 302 Board of Education and being a three-term member of that board; as a member of the former Kane County Criminal Justice Commission; and as a member of the Kane County Regional Planning Commission and the Kane County Zoning Board of Appeals.

His other community involvement includes being a longtime member of the Elburn Lions Club and the Elburn Chamber of Commerce.

“I am an advocate of when new folks move in, they will come to some Lions Club functions and other Elburn events and observe the village and how it does things,” he said.

If elected, he will work toward updating the village’s land-use plan.

“That plan is over 15 years old. Does it, in fact, recognize what is going to happen in the future?” Anderson said. “We seem to be looking at what is going to happen next year. I don’t want us to do that. I want my grandchildren to have things molded for the next 20 years.”

Anderson wants residents to know that he is forward-thinking.

“Forward ever, backward never,” Anderson said.

He said the village needs improvements and has for some time in its stormwater system.

“We need to put some emphasis on it, and take care of it,” Anderson said.

Toward that goal, the village should do more basic maintenance of its infrastructure, which he feels has been lacking.

To help Elburn meet financial and other challenges, he wants the Village Board to return to its former committee structure so that trustees become more involved in the village’s operation and direction, he said.

“I’d like a finance committee and on the finance committee, I want the village treasurer, in addition to board members,” Anderson said.

Another board committee he wants to establish is development. He said he would expect the village development director and building and zoning director to be involved in that committee. He also would create a public safety committee that would include the police and fire chiefs.

“The more minds and the more people you get involved in the committee structure, the better,” Anderson said.

With the village facing declining revenue, he recommends that it do a needs assessment and zero-based budgeting.

“All village departments should establish a budget without looking at the last year’s,” Anderson said. “Maybe the board wouldn’t want that, but I would put it out there.”

When he was on the Kaneland School Board in the 1980s, the teachers were on strike. He said that during the negotiations, his main consideration was, will it be good for the kids?

Anderson said if he becomes Village Board president, the question he always will consider is, is it good for Elburn?

Patricia Romke
Romke, an Elburn trustee for the past two years, said after Jim Willey decided not to seek re-election to the village president seat, she would run for the position.

“Having been on the board for two years, I have gotten a feel for what the issues are, what we’re facing-and I thought I could help make a difference in Elburn,” Romke said.

Aside from her board experience, Romke would bring commitment to the position, she said.

“Whatever I tackle, whether it be working with clients, the community or on the board, has my full attention” Romke said. “I take this very seriously.”

If elected, her foremost goal for the Village Board is that it “maintain a vision of what Elburn is and can be,” Romke said. “We need to be visionary, be innovative, and look forward, to move the village to another level.”

She believes during the economic downturn, Elburn officials should take the opportunity to take a step back and consider the village’s future.

“While we’re not dealing with rapid expansion, we should plan carefully to make sure that when the economy does turn around, and it will-it’s cyclical-that we’re prepared and that we’ve made good decisions,” Romke said.

For example, when village officials are working with developers and going through the pre-annexation process, they should make sure to do planned unit development so that the village does not have sprawl and disconnected growth, Romke said.

“We need to work within the framework of the village’s long-range plan for where housing and commercial development are slated to go,” Romke said.

She said she wants the village to keep an “open dialogue” with developers who want to build in Elburn in the future.

“We need to try not to have any contention with their plan versus what we’re requiring. We have to figure out how to work together,” Romke said. “If we do that, I strongly feel if we do that and plan well, that when the economy recovers we will be perfectly positioned.”

One project Romke hopes that the village can do is to connect the Metra station and its proposed development to the downtown by building a pedestrian bridge at the end of Third Street.

“We have submitted a request for stimulus funds hopefully to construct a pedestrian bridge that will allow for pedestrians to walk from the train station to the downtown,” she said.

She wants the community to be more pedestrian oriented, as a whole.

“We need to continue to develop our bicycle route plan, to be able to move people around the village without having to drive, and let people know how they can get from one point to another,” Romke said.

Romke said the village should take advantage of all the resources it can to obtain information and funding.

“We need to work with our legislators, our congressmen, and our county, state and municipal officials,” Romke said.

“We have Northern Illinois University; we’ve got Waubonsee Community College; we’ve got Fermilab-all of these are sources of innovative thinkers.

Although the village does not have a park district, it could work with other communities on exchanging some recreational opportunities, Romke said.

Romke wants village officials to have a more open dialogue with the Elburn and Countryside Community Center Board, because the center has a lot to offer, she said.

A nine-year resident, Romke lives in the Cambridge subdivision, where residential flooding has been an issue. She wants the village to solve the problem there and elsewhere in the village.

“It’s time to take some corrective action, do whatever is necessary to correct the water leaking into the sewer lines that overwhelmed the wastewater treatment plant,” Romke said.

She said when the Village Board does its budget, it must prioritize paying for any needed stormwater and sewer system repairs.

The village should continue to seek government grants, Romke said.

“We need to be more proactive. We need to write legislators, letting them know what Elburn needs.”

In her job as a Realtor, Romke lobbied for tax credits for home purchases. What she learned was that what gets a response from lawmakers are phone calls and personal letters to them, she said.

Romke said revenue will be Elburn’s biggest challenge during the next few years. As Elburn’s village budget tightens, the solution should not be to cut staff, which she considers the village’s most valuable resource, Romke said.

Instead, she wants each village department to make the appropriate adjustments so that the village can get through this time, such as cross sharing, and group purchasing for supplies.

Romke said the village must make the most of its existing staff.

“If I am elected, something I will want to put into place is that every employee is going to write their own job description, what they do, how much time they spend doing it, and other ways they feel they can contribute,” she said. “I feel that that is critical. We may have some people that may have some talents that we’re not even aware of and not using.”

She also wants village staff to create a new policies and procedures manual for employees.

Before becoming a Realtor, Romke was in healthcare corporate sales and marketing for more than 20 years.

Romke said she gained experience that she brings to the Village Board.

“I am able to read and understand a budget, to work within budget constraints, and to bring creativity and insight to the board,” she said. “I bring a lot of enthusiasm and energy.”

To boost revenue, the village must bring more businesses to the village, and toward that goal, it will have to promote the village more, she said.

“We are going to have to start doing more getting out and sell Elburn as a place to bring your business, because we are the next western suburb,” Romke said.

She believes that the downtown could be revitalized by connecting it to Metra, with the pedestrian bridge.

“People could take the train out to Elburn for all the events that we have, and walk downtown.”