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Voters to decide: Elburn or Fox River Fire District?

ELBURN—Voters in the northeast section of the Elburn and Countryside Fire Protection District will soon decide whether or not to disconnect from the district and join the Fox River Fire Rescue District.

Elburn District Fire Chief Kelly Callaghan attended the Elburn Village Board meeting on Monday to ask for the board’s help in opposing the referendum, which will appear on the Nov. 4 ballot.

Callaghan said that the area, which is bordered generally by La Fox Road on the east, Anderson Road on the west, Campton Hills Road on the south and Empire Road on the north, represents about 10 percent of the district’s square miles and 21 percent of its value. He said the disconnection would have a significant impact on the district’s funding.

“We’re actively fighting it,” Callaghan said.

Callaghan said that a petition to disconnect from Elburn and join the Fox River and Countryside Fire Rescue District was signed by 128 residents in the area this summer.

The petition was reviewed by Kane County Circuit Judge David Akemann. Following testimony from both sides, Akemann determined that the question should be put to the voters. Approximately 3,000 residents live in the area that would be affected.

Callaghan said that, although the Fox River’s tax rate is less than that charged by Elburn, residents would also be taking on a significant debt from a time during which Fox River was contracting with the St. Charles Fire Protection District for services.

The referendum question will ask residents in the affected area if they are for or against the transfer from the Elburn District to the Fox River District, including assuming any debt of the district they would join.

Callaghan asked the board for an endorsement from the village, as well as letters to the editor in support of the Elburn Fire District. He said that most of the people in the affected area were not aware of the debt or even the possible disconnection.

Village President Dave Anderson said his concern was, first and foremost, the safety of the residents involved.

“Elburn has served this area for more than 100 years, and has done so very well,” he said.

Anderson said that, in addition to better equipment, the Elburn District has a higher percentage of local residents among its paramedics and EMTs.

“My question would be, if I’m having a heart attack, how long is it going to take them to get there?” Anderson said.

The Elburn and Countryside Fire Protection District is in the process of building a new station at Route 38 and Anderson Road. Callaghan said the District is also currently renting property on Wooley Road in Lily Lake while it looks for a property on which to build a satellite station in that area. An engine will be located at the Wooley Road location, beginning Oct. 1.

Fire Protection District employees cannot, by law, advocate for a specific position on the referendum. However, the district is in the process of putting together a fact sheet. In addition, Elburn District employees, on their off-duty time, will be meeting with residents at church meetings and homeowner’s association meetings to educate the public.

Fox River District Board President Jim Gaffney was reached on Wednesday for comment. Gaffney said that both districts’ firefighters and paramedics are equally trained, and the only difference, should the disconnection take place, would be the patch on the uniform.

“I won’t criticize Elburn; Elburn is a good department,” Gaffney said.

However, he said that the response times for the Fox River District to a majority of the area in question are quicker, and they are doing it cheaper. He said that any debt from the district is stretched out over time, just as it would be in any taxing district.

Gaffney added that the station on Route 64 in Wasco would be adding a second ambulance, effective Monday.

Trustee Bill Grabarek said he would like the board to consider the issue at the next Village Board meeting.


In the company of family, friends

Community rallies around Hughes
SUGAR GROVE—Everyone’s life ends at some point, but hearing a doctor say it is hard to handle, said Beverly Holmes Hughes, Sugar Grove’s former library director.

Hughes has been diagnosed with glioblastoma multiforme—an aggressive brain tumor with a dire prognosis. It’s especially hard for Hughes to handle because she is the sole support for seven people: her husband, Chuck, who has congestive heart failure; her sister, Janet, who has diabetes; and several special-needs children the three have adopted and co-parented—four of whom are still minors living at home.

That’s why several of Hughes’ friends—and after more than two decades of service to Sugar Grove, she has a lot of them—have banded together to host a fundraiser for her and her family, called “Beverly’s Battle Against Brain Cancer.”

“She is just a huge part of this community, and to have her be stricken with this terrible kind of cancer all of a sudden has really hit a lot of us very hard,” said Louise Coffman, Sugar Grove Library Board Treasurer. “She really has been the person in her family who has supported everybody all these years. She and her sister co-parented dozens of foster kids, and she supports her sister and her adopted special-needs kids. These people are giving back to society in manifold ways, and it just seems right that we would help her.”

Organizers have set up an account at Castle Bank at 36 E. Galena Blvd. in Sugar Grove, and they are asking area families to drop off checks made out to the Beverly Holmes Hughes Fund. Donations can also be dropped off at a number of locations throughout Sugar Grove.

“It’s an ongoing fundraiser, so donations don’t have to be one large amount at one time. If someone can do $10 a week, that would be wonderful,” said Pat Graceffa, a Sugar Grove Library trustee and longtime friend of Hughes.

“Beverly would always be the first one there to help them if they were in need,” she said. “She worked in our community for 19 years, and she was involved in everything—the library, the Corn Boil, the Chamber of Commerce, the Farmer’s Market. She did all of those things so that people would know that the library was the living room of the community—someplace where you could come (visit); someplace that would bring the community together.”

Hughes’ work in the community has been so extensive that she was named Sugar Grove’s Citizen of the Year in 2010, even though she lives in North Aurora.

Hughes discovered she had a brain tumor following a spring break trip last May, when she started having trouble with her right leg and fell.

When she wound up in the emergency room, doctors told her that her leg was not the problem and that she had a Stage 4 glioblastoma multiforme, an aggressive cancer that sends tentacles throughout the brain. Though she’s had brain surgery to remove the bulk of the tumor, it’s impossible to remove it all without removing parts of Hughes’ brain.

“With brain surgery, the margin of safety is that they have to leave a little of it,” Hughes said.

Chemotherapy and radiation can hold the cancer cells in check for awhile, but not forever. Glioblastoma patients have a median survival time of 14.6 months, a statistic that is difficult for Hughes to face.

“It’s stopped us in our tracks and made us think about a bitter reality that it’s not easy to think about,” Hughes said. “There are times I’ve said to the kids that everybody comes through it in a different way. And they say, ‘But you’re going to die.’ And I say, ‘Yes, but there’s so much we can do in the meantime.’”

It doesn’t surprise Hughes’ friends that she would try to stay positive even about cancer. Graceffa said that Hughes is truly selfless.

“Her whole life has never been about her,” Graceffa said. “She’s truly a remarkable person. I’ve just never met anyone like her in my whole life.”

Hughes and her sister, Janet Holmes, lived together when they were young and began taking in dozens of foster children in their home in North Aurora.

“They always took children who were the least adoptable,” Graceffa said. “Children born to moms addicted to cocaine, children who couldn’t hear—and so (Beverly and Janet) needed to learn sign language—and children who had physical or mental challenges.”

Some of those children eventually returned to their biological families, but Holmes adopted seven of the foster children, and “Aunt Beverly” lived with them and helped raise them. When Hughes married, her husband Chuck agreed to join the family and help raise those children, as well. Though three of the children are now grown and living independently, four teenagers remain at home.

Since Hughes is the only one in the family with a job that provides health insurance, she must continue working, even though the tumor is affecting her ability to walk and the chemo has sapped her strength, Coffman said. Hughes is working as the director of library services for DeVry University in Addison, Ill., and though the library has allowed her to do some of that work from home, she must still go in regularly.

“She’s working 30 hours a week now in order to maintain her health insurance and benefits, and I can’t imagine anything harder than basically having a terminal illness where you have to slog through a regular workweek and not have the luxury of being ill (and just resting and recovering),” Coffman said.

The goal of the fundraiser, Coffman said, is to take some of the burden off of Hughes. Though raising money to help pay Hughes’ mounting medical bills and household bills is the main goal, organizers are also seeking other kinds of donations, including gas cards to help pay for frequent trips to the hospital and to visit Ed, the family’s 14-year-old son who lives at a school for the deaf on weekdays, and Lydia, an older daughter who lives independently.

Grocery cards and easy meals would also be helpful, Coffman said, since it is a large family, and back-to-school supplies and clothes for the four children—twins Hannah and Elizabeth, age 13; Ed; and George, age 17—would be welcome. Since Hughes’ immune system has been compromised by the chemotherapy, donations of paper towels, liquid soap, Lysol wipes, trash bags and hand sanitizer are also being accepted.

Hughes’ tumor is affecting her ability to walk and drive, and so volunteers willing to transport her to and from her job in Addison are also needed. Chuck had heart surgery earlier this week and is currently not well enough to drive her.

Gifts of fun family activities are also welcome, as Hughes is trying to spend quality time with the children while she can.

“We want the kids to have as normal and carefree a childhood as possible,” Hughes said.”

Sugar Grove trustee Mari Johnson, who is also sponsoring the fundraiser, is hoping that the citizens of Sugar Grove—all the families who brought their children into library storytime over the years; all the students who needed research assistance; all the adults who just wanted a good book—will donate to help Hughes in her hour of need.

The two met when Johnson brought her son, who was then 2 years old, into the library for storytime. Her son is now 26, and Hughes and Johnson have been friends for more than two decades.

“When I think of how many families brought their children for storytime over those 20 years, if each one of those families donated just a small amount, it could make such a difference in her life,” Johnson said. “I think it’s just really important that people are aware. Some of the reasons that we’re here and we do these sorts of things is that we’re still a small town, and people care about each other. One way to show that you care is to donate, even if it’s just as little as $1.”

There won’t be any fancy fundraising events for Hughes, either. Instead of holding a $40 dinner where $30 of that goes to pay for the food, venue and entertainment, the community is instead planning a simpler fundraiser where every single dollar donated goes straight to help Hughes.

Coffman, who helps plan the Corn Boil and a number of other community events, said they thought something simple might be best.

“It was a matter of, ‘Is the community kind of tapped out in terms of partying?’ Okay, you don’t have to stand in a buffet line or buy raffle tickets. Every dollar you give goes straight to that family,” Coffman said.

Though they’ve been publicizing the fundraiser with flyers, organizers haven’t had the response they hope for yet.

“We’ve had some response so far, but not as much as I would have hoped,” Coffman said. “We’d like to get more. We have a Facebook page with 400 followers. If 400 people actually sent in $10, that would be awesome and that would really, really help. That kind of bulk contribution—you can’t really have 400 people at a banquet hall and get that kind of money to go to the person in need.”

Coffman said that she understands times are tough for many families, but that most people can afford to send something.

“We’re asking for a little bit of help from a lot of people,” she said. “I know that Beverly is loved by this community from the outpouring of support she got from the library. I know we can do this. If a lot of us gave even a little, that would be the best outcome.”

The effort has to be ongoing, Coffman emphasized.

“The problem with this kind of cancer, and I am not sure that people are really aware of it, but this is not a curable disease. Beverly will be receiving chemo treatments for the rest of her life, until the chemo doesn’t work anymore. This has to be an ongoing effort, because she’s going to need our help. Someone needs to make sure people understand this,” Coffman said.

Monetary donations can be made to
the Beverly Holmes Hughes Fund
at any Castle Bank, or mailed to the Sugar Grove location,
36 E. Galena Blvd.,
Sugar Grove, IL 60554.

Donations of money, gas cards, grocery cards, disinfecting supplies, clothes, school supplies and other items can be dropped off at the following locations:

Downtown Sugar Grove
• 201 Calkins Dr., Sugar Grove

• Sugar Grove Chamber of
Commerce Office, Sugar Grove
Community House on Main
Street, Tuesdays and Thursdays,
10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

• Advanced Realty Consultants,
91 Sugar Lane, Unit 2, weekdays,
9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Windsor Point subdivision
• 287 E. Park Ave., Sugar Grove

Dugan Woods subdivision
• 1916 Annettes Circle,
Sugar Grove

Lakes of Bliss Woods subdivision
• 923 Spruce St., Sugar Grove

Walnut Woods subdivision
• Debbie DeBoer,
865 Boyce Road, Sugar Grove

Hannaford Farm subdivision
• Rachel Rockwell,
1731 Hannaford Drive,
Sugar Grove

Village donates playground equipment to Elburn Community Center

ELBURN—The Village Board on Monday voted to donate playground equipment to the Elburn and Countryside Community Center, but no Community Center representatives were present to accept it.

The village purchased the playground equipment approximately 25 years ago, and the village has been leasing the grounds on which it is located from the Community Center since 1994. The village’s first 10-year lease was renewed in 2004, and was then allowed to lapse in April of this year when it came up for renewal.

The village in 2011 applied for a grant through the Open Space Lands Acquisition and Development Program, which would have provided a 50 percent reimbursement to pay for $85,000 worth of new playground equipment to replace the equipment currently there. The project would have cost the village $42,500 had it been awarded the grant.

At the time, Jenna Cook, a Public Works employee who had been spearheading the project, said that most park equipment only lasts an average of 12 to 15 years, and at 25 years, the equipment was not only outdated, but was also not in compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act.

In addition, she said, the sand beneath the playground equipment was infested with bee nests. The plan then was to replace all of the playground equipment, and the sand underneath it would be removed. Wood mulch was to replace the bee-ridden sand.

“We would replace everything,” she told board members at the time. “The sand is a bees’ nest haven. Kids have a lot of issues (with bees) in the summertime.”

The village’s grant request was denied.

Some board members asked whether there were some things the village could do to reduce costs, such as removing the sand and grading the playground. They also talked about looking for a local excavator to help with the project and make the new playground more of a community project.

In the end, no action was taken.

Village Administrator Erin Willrett said on Monday she had expected a board member from the Community Center to be on hand at the Village Board meeting to accept the donation, but no one from the Community Center attended the meeting.

Village attorney Bob Britz said that best practice would be for the Community Center Board to pass its own resolution to accept the equipment. He said he would also recommend that the Community Center Board draft an agreement in which it accepts the donated equipment in “as is” condition.

Trustee Jeff Walter wondered if there should be a clause in the ordinance to donate the equipment that would address liability issues.

“Once they accept it (the playground equipment), the liability is theirs,” Britz said.

The board voted unanimously to donate the equipment.

“It makes sense,” Village President Dave Anderson said. “They have the volleyball court out there now. It’s the thing to do.”

Trustee Dave Gualdoni on Tuesday said that he thought it was a good decision for the village to divest itself of the equipment.

“It was kind of a no-brainer. As far as I’m concerned, it’s a liability,” he said. “We (the village) don’t have the funds to replace it. The Community Center is a not-for-profit and they can raise the funds to bring it up to code.”

He said that he always thought it was a bad idea to pay for equipment on someone else’s land.

“It’s like buying a house and putting it on someone else’s property,” he said.

Community Center Board treasurer Bill Brauer said that the board has not held a meeting since the village’s decision to donate the equipment to them, and that it would be a total (Community Center) board decision.

Community Center board member Ryan Wells was reached on Wednesday. Wells is also the publisher of the Elburn Herald.

“As much as we’d love to receive the playground and take over the maintenance and upkeep of one of the few community parks in the village, the Community Center is not in a strong enough financial position to invest the amount of money it would require,” Wells said. “Although I can’t speak for the entire Community Center Board, I do know that from a purely objective standpoint, the center cannot afford to take on that responsibility at this time.”

He said he wished that the Community Center Board had been given adequate time to discuss the Village Board’s action, but center board members did not hear about this possibility until last Thursday.

“Unfortunately, the Elburn Village Board elected to move forward without hearing an official response from the Community Center Board,” he said.

In the meantime, Willrett said that the equipment does meet the requirements for the village’s insurance coverage on it. As for the stinging insects, she said that when the village gets a report of wasps in the sand, someone from the village goes out there to spray.

During budget talks for the 2014-15 fiscal year, several trustees, including Gualdoni, brought up the issue of needed improvements to village parks, including the Community Center park. There is currently $50,000 in the budget for parks and recreation. The village owns two other parks, Byerhoff Park on Shannon Street and Prairie Park, located across from Town and Country Public Library.

Kaneland considers search firms for superintendent search

KANELAND—The Kaneland School Board last week discussed the search firms it may enlist to find its new superintendent.

Kaneland previous superintendent, Dr. Jeff Schuler, submitted his letter of resignation in late July after accepting an offer to become superintendent of schools for the Wheaton-Warrenville School District.

In the meantime, Dr. Renee Goier will serve as interim superintendent.

The search firms considered by Kaneland include BWP & Associates and School Exec Connect (SEC).

BWP is an educational leadership firm. SEC locates superintendents, central office administrators and principals.

Both firms provided separate presentations about their businesses and answered the board’s questions. BWP gave a range of finding an online applicant between eight to 16 weeks. Dr. Mark Friedman, president of BWP, explained who Kaneland’s superintendent could be.

“Your next superintendent is working somewhere else, possibly,” said Dr. Mark Friedman, president of BWP.

Both search firms would have a superintendent profile, which would contain a list of desired superintendent qualities and characteristics agreed upon by the School Board.

BWP also plans to talk with the Kaneland community and take the public’s desired profile to the board. SEC would gain a profile from focus groups and a survey.

Dr. Linda Hanson, president of SEC, advocated the idea to “throw the net wide” while searching for superintendent candidates.

“See what you come up with,” Hanson said.

BWP had a plan for when the candidate list came down to two or three prospects: the board would eat dinner with them to get to know them.

The board would also be coached on appropriate questions to ask candidates.

Hanson made it clear that the Kaneland School Board is not her company’s priority, stating that it is the Kaneland children who are SEC’s first responsibility when it comes to the search.

Valente expressed a concern of candidates getting the job because of “headhunting” or through personal connections.

“It’s got to be a transparent search,” Valente said. “We have to make sure there’s no hint of bias.”

Valente added that he did not want to find that a person is related to anyone in the district.

“Advertise the heck out of this job,” Valente said.

School Board Vice President Teresa Witt weighed in with her thoughts on the superintendent search.

“Cast the net, advertise, vet,” she said. “If you know someone of someone, that’s part of what you do.”

The cost of both firms’ services could range from $17,000 to $20,000.

“It is our responsibility (to) develop that profile so you do have clear marching orders,” board member Peter Lopatin said.

School Board approves 2014-15 budget

KANELAND—The Kaneland School Board last week approved the 2014-15 budget.

Board member Tony Valente was the lone “no” vote.

Kaneland assistant superintendent for business Dr. Julie-Ann Fuchs earlier this year provided information for the tentative budget, stating that it totaled $66.5 million, with the Education Fund at a projected deficit of $3 million.

Now that the budget information is updated, the Education Fund has a deficit projected at $2.7 million.

The tentative budget showed surpluses for both the Operations and Maintenance Fund ($115,000) and the Transportation Fund ($1.9 million). Fuch’s recent report shows that the Operations and Maintenance Fund now has a $16,000 surplus, while the Transportation Fund has a $1.96 million surplus.

“Illinois school districts are required to submit a balanced budget in the operating funds, which include the Education, Operations and Maintenance, Transportation and Working Cash funds,” Fuchs wrote. “While this year’s operating budget is not balanced, the budget does not require the district to submit a deficit reduction plan.”

The report noted that now there is about $300,000 more than in the tentative budget from General State Aid.

Fuchs wrote that GSA is prorated this year at 89 percent, or a reduction of almost $488,000. She added that last year the proration was 88.7 percent, which caused a reduction of about $341,000.

According to the report, administration and support staff salaries are projected to increase by an average of 2.7 percent this school year. However, it is not yet known what Kaneland’s teaching salary increase will be.

Valente pointed out the Transportation Fund’s surplus.

“Why were we so off with our tax levy?” Valente asked.

“That was done intentionally,” Fuchs answered, explaining that as EAV drops, the tax rate rises.

Fuchs gave examples of how money is being spent, like reduction in class sizes, two full-time Spanish teachers at Kaneland Harter Middle School, additional paraprofessional support, transportation and about 700 devices for students.

Sugar Grove Township resident Jerry Elliott spoke during public comment about the Kaneland community being “not taxpayer friendly,” and “retirees having a hard time living here, along with first-time homebuyers who can’t live here.”

“The spending is way too much,” Elliott said.

Sugar Grove resident Dan Nagel also stood up to speak.

“There is no planning at all,” Nagel said to the School Board. “You’ll leave the taxpayer holding the bag.”

2015 School Board election

KANELAND—The 2015 consolidated general election is still nearly eight months away, but School Board candidates are already gearing up for the biennial event.

Tuesday, Sept. 23, is the first official day prospective candidates may circulate nominating petitions for signatures for the April 7, 2015, School Board election.

This will be the first year that local school districts will not be involved in the School Board election process. Those duties have been moved from the School Board secretary to the county clerk or county board of election commissioners, as required under a new state law that went into effect earlier this year. The Kane County Elections Office is located at 719 S. Batavia Ave., Building B (north entrance), Geneva. It can be reached at elections@co.kane.il.us or (630) 232-5990.

Candidates seeking information and forms should be referred to the county office responsible for the elections or to the Illinois State Board of Elections. The latter maintains a website that includes the 2015 Candidates’ Guide, www.elections.il.gov/Downloads/ElectionInformation/PDF/2015CanGuide.pdf.

The following forms are needed from a candidate when filing:
• A Statement of Candidacy, signed and notarized
• Nominating papers bearing the required number of signatures (each signature must have an address), and a notarized signature of the petition circulator
• A receipt from the county clerk showing that the candidate has filed a Statement of Economic Interests before the day for filing, but with the year (2014). Note: incumbents only need to provide a copy of the receipt from their required May 1, 2014, filing, unless they filed electronically
• Loyalty Oath (this is optional)
Board member nominating papers must be filed with the County Board or election commissioners, as the case may be, of the county in which the principal office of the school district is located. [105 ILCS 5/9-10]

• Monday, Dec. 15, is the first day that candidates may file these papers. Monday, Dec. 22, is the last day candidates may file (filings must be made not more than 113 or less than 106 days prior to the consolidated election).
• Tuesday, Dec. 30, is the last day for candidates who have filed for two incompatible offices to withdraw from all but one of the offices with the local election official or election authority.
• Wednesday, Dec. 31, is the last day lottery shall be conducted by the local election official when two or more petitions are received simultaneously for the same office by more than one School Board candidate.
• Thursday, Jan. 29, 2015, is the last day for local election official to certify candidates and the offices they are filing for to the election authority for the April 7, 2015, School Board election (10 ILCS 5/10-15). This is also the last day candidates may file notarized papers withdrawing their nomination in the office of the local election official (10 ILCS 5/10-7).
• Thursday, Feb. 5, 2015, is the last day a person may file a notarized Declaration of Intent to be a write-in candidate with the proper election authority or authorities (appropriate county clerk(s) and/or boards of election commissioners. Write-in votes shall only be counted for person(s) who have filed a Declaration of Intent. Write-in declarations are not filed with the State Board of Elections.

After the election, the county election authority has until April 28, 2015, to canvass the votes and proclaim results. A complete abstract of votes will be transmitted to each local official and the State Board of Elections.

More information regarding deadlines for candidates is available from the Illinois State Board of Elections calendar, which is also available online at www.elections.il.gov/Downloads/ElectionInformation/PDF/ 2015ElectionCalendar.pdf. IASB posted its annual school calendar of legal dates and deadlines for 2014-15 online at the end of August. Staff members proof the calendar for accuracy with the Illinois State Board of Elections calendar. IASB’s calendar includes a PDF version that can be downloaded at www.iasb.com/pdf/cal_1415.pdf.

B. Sweeney

Popular Kaneland teacher dies

ST. CHARLES—One didn’t have to know Bridget Sweeney long to feel the positive influence she provided for her students and colleagues alike, according to Kaneland High School principal Jill Maras.

A teacher of consumer education and career classes at Kaneland since 2009, Sweeney, 40, of St. Charles, succumbed to cancer on Sept. 8 while at home, surrounded by her family. She is survived by her husband, Matthew, and children, Jack and Lillian. She was preceded in death by an infant daughter, Nora.

While mourning Sweeney’s passing, her colleagues and students are remembering the care, encouragement and support she provided to all she contacted.

“She was such a talented, well-rounded individual,” said feather Nikki Larsen. “And she always had time for her students; she took care of them like they were her own.

“She was just one of those people that was always easy to talk to, that you connected with instantly.”

KHS senior Jessica Poust took one of Sweeney’s foods classes as a freshman, and remembers her as being well-liked by everyone.

“She was a young teacher, so she was really relatable for her students,” Poust said. “She was easy to talk to, and she cared about everybody.

Although she didn’t teach at the Fox Valley Career Center, FVCC Director Rick Burchell said he never saw her without a smile on her face.

“She was just a very positive person,” he said.

Maras said Kaneland Cares, which grew out of the staff’s “sunshine committee,” has plans to remember Sweeney.

“From funds raised by the organization, a donation will be made in Bridget’s name to the organization of the family’s choice,” Maras said.

Sweeney’s family has requested donations be made to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, 501 St. Jude Place, Memphis, TN 38105.

Closer to home, the group is planning to install a memorial marker in the pond area of the KHS courtyard and establish a memorial scholarship.

“We’re working on determining the criteria now so we can publish the information in the spring,” Maras said.

The first scholarship will be awarded to a 2015 graduate. Maras said the scholarship is funded for the next five years, and she hopes it will continue beyond that time.

“Building relationships was one of her strengths, with students and staff,” Maras said.

9-18 Police Blotter

The following reports were obtained from local police departments. The individuals charged with crimes are presumed innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.

• Miguel Granado, 30, of the 700 block of Gates St., Aurora, was charged on Sept. 5 at 9:07 a.m. for driving 37 mph in a 25 mph zone, driving without a valid license, and operating an uninsured vehicle.
• Christopher M. Mullally, 37, of the 0N900 block of Route 47 in Elburn, was charged on Aug. 25, with driving under the influence, driving with a blood alcohol content of .08 or more, operating an uninsured vehicle, illegal transport of alcohol by driver and improper lane usage. He was traveling southbound on Route 47, south of Stetzer St., at 11:26 p.m. when he turned into a ditch and struck a fire plug.
• Criminal damage to property took place on Aug. 21 at a residence in the 1000 block of Blackberry Creek Drive, Elburn, where a crack in a wooden window pane was reported to have taken place at 1:45 a.m.
• A car charging cord for a cell phone was stolen from a vehicle parked on the 1000 block of Wise St. in Elburn some time between Aug. 20 at 6:30 p.m. and Aug. 21 at 6 a.m.
• Jesse Paul Gallois, 24, of the 0N100 block of Weaver Circle, Geneva, was charged on Aug. 17 with driving under the influence, driving with a blood alcohol level of .08 or more, and speeding between 25 and 35 miles per hour over the posted limit. Gallois was driving eastbound on Route 38 east of Anderson Road at 4:41 a.m.

photo 2

Living history

We want to hear from you!
Tell us who you think is Kaneland’s biggest rival
Kaneland athletics have many rivals, but who is No. 1 in your eyes?
[formlightbox_call title=”Submit Rivals Survey” class=”10″]Button_submit_news[/formlightbox_call][formlightbox_obj id=”10″ style=”” onload=”false”][gravityform id=”10″ ajax=”true”][/formlightbox_obj]Results from this survey will be compiled for publication in the Sept. 25 edition
of the Elburn Herald.

KHS has had its share of rivals from another time
KANELAND—Kaneland’s athletic battles with local schools Sycamore, Yorkville and Burlington Central, and off-and-on conference foes like Geneva and Batavia, continue to rage on, so it makes sense to look at how KHS got to its current group of noteworthy rivals.

It helps to look back at a previous era, which included schools still achieving success on many fields, and would often battle with Kaneland. The high school enrollments were different, and regular battles may not happen as much in 2014, but they can still trigger memories and fun.

Longtime Kaneland Athletics Director Bob Peterson remembers the glory days of the Little Seven Conference, which had eight decades of play total, with Kaneland joining up in 1963 after coming from the Little Eight.

Peterson is still a fixture at football and basketball games featuring the Knights, and no stranger to intense rivalries between Fox Valley area programs.

“Certainly in basketball, Oswego and Plainfield were big rivals of ours,” Peterson said. “Oswego and Plainfield always had good talent, and we liked to try and beat them, being one of the smaller schools.”

With schools in the 1970s like Cary-Grove, Morris and West Chicago moving in and out of the in flux-Little Seven, Peterson knew what wins on any field would mean.

“You always liked the idea of being able to beat a bigger school, that was nice when you could do that and also beat Sycamore,” Peterson said.

District 302 educator and former KHS volleyball coach and graduate Kris Weiss had her preferences of rivals that don’t cross Kaneland’s path much anymore.

“They’re non-conference now, but back in the ‘80s, Oswego was such a big rival,” Weiss said. “Waubonsie Valley and Plainfield were big rivals, before Plainfield was four schools. At the time, because the Little 7 was 10 schools, we played everybody twice. DeKalb and St. Charles were probably our biggest non-conference foes.”

The Fox Valley area had smaller enrollments, with athletes from schools in the widespread area reaching out and crossing paths.

“If you talk to people that played in the mid-’80s before big club sports and AAU and travel baseball and softball, a lot of us would play in Oswego where we knew people, and that would help the rivalries once we got back into school,” Weiss said.

Dana Wagner, Waubonsee Community College assistant athletic manager and former Kaneland hoops great, had her share of Little Seven skirmishes, along with her preferences.

“For me in basketball, it was always Morris, and it seemed as though every game came down to the wire. For some reason, there was no love lost between us,” Wagner said.

Like Peterson, Wagner feels some rivalries were heightend due to the school sizes.

“I would have to say (I liked playing) Geneva, Batavia and Waubonsie Valley. We were always so much smaller than them, so beating them was extra rewarding,” Wagner said.

The Elburn Herald Sports department heard takes about rivalries old and new, with your turn on favorite foes still to come.


Zombie Run set for Oct. 10

Join the Knight cross country teams for a spooky “Knight of the Zombies” run Oct. 10.

The evening will feature two races:

Trick or Treat Run
This run features friendly zombies sharing treats with participants in grades second through fifth, begining at 5:20 p.m. Competitors may dress up and walk or run for treats from the team. Cost is $5 per student.

Run For Your Life
The second event will begin at 6 p.m. Flagged runners will try to elude the grasp of the zombies over the 1.2 mile course. Survivors will compete for trophies and ribbons. Cost is $10 per runner.

For more information on the Zombie Run and to register, visit kanelandxc.blogspot.com.


Soccer brings winning logic vs. IMSA

Photo: Peter Jefferson controls the ball Saturday in Kaneland’s 7-0 win over IMSA.
Photo by Tiffany Kufer

Matches against Sycamore, Morris cap week
KANELAND—No matter the opponent, it’s always nice to see offense on the pitch.

After taking a little while to get going, the goals eventually came early and often in a busy week for KHS soccer. Last Thursday against invading Sycamore, the Knights battled the Spartans to a 1-1 tie. Saturday saw IMSA on the wrong end of a 7-0 rout. On Tuesday in Morris, KHS won 3-2.

Kaneland is now 3-4-1 (1-1-1 Northern Illinois Big XII).

Facing the rival Spartans, the lone goal came after a scoreless first half, thanks to Ivan Bohorquez’ try with 18:34 remaining.

In the offenseive explosion against the Titans, six goals within a 27:24 span in the first half put the match on ice.

Goals were managed by Drew Franklin, Angel Escontrias, Mark Dhom, Felippe Speraggi in back-to-back conversions and Escontrias again. Escontrias completed his hat trick with four minutes gone by in the second half of play.

Tuesday saw Escontrias supply a goal and an assist, while Speraggi and Cameron Pieczynski also found the back of the net. Ivan Bohorquez and Matthew Gombar supplied assists.

Kaneland was set to travel to DeKalb on Wednesday and host Yorkville on Tuesday, Sept. 23.


Volleyball dominates vs. IMSA, takes on Pontiac Invite

Photo: Junior McKenzie McMullan spikes the volleyball over an IMSA defender last Thursday. Photo by Mary Paulson

KANELAND—Volleyball got itself on a roll this past week, with a win over Montini Catholic a week and a half ago carrying over to a win over Aurora’s visiting IMSA program on Thursday, and a 3-1 finish, third-place nod against the likes of Streator, LaSalle-Peru, Putnam County and Morris out at the Pontiac Volleyball Invite on Saturday. Meanwhile, against visiting DeKalb, the Lady Knights got a conference win over the visiting Barbs.

Kaneland sits at 11-6 at the current juncture of the 2014 campaign, thus far a two-match improvement over last year.

Against the visiting Titans, the Lady Knights excelled in a 25-13, 25-10 sweep. Future Ball State Cardinal Ellie Dunn had 10 kills, four service points, two digs and two blocks. Riley Hannula had seven service points, and teammate Sammi Burgin added four service points, an ace and two kills.

Anna Senese also had two aces and a kill, while Hannah Nauert supplied 10 service points, two aces and 11 assists.

In Pontiac against opening opponent Streator, the Lady Knights swept the Bulldogs 25-12, 25-20, followed by a 25-20, 25-16 setback against LaSalle-Peru. After the Northern Illinois Big XII crossover double-dip, Kaneland handled Granville, Ill.-outpost Putnam County 25-21, 25-13, and East divison rival Morris in a 25-20, 25-20 decision.

On Tuesday, Senese supplied 14 service points, an ace, six kills a block and three digs. Dunn had four service points, eight kills, three blocks and two digs. Hannula had six kills and four blocks, while Hollie Fedderly had 10 digs, eight assists and five service points. Nauert had six service points, 12 assists, three digs and an ace.

Kaneland hosts Sycamore—the program that ended the Lady Knights’ 2013 season—on Thursday, Sept. 18.


That’s Rich

First regular-season home loss since 2009 sees KHS fall to 2-1
MAPLE PARK—As the saying goes, “You can’t win them all”— but it’s been a quite a run for the Kaneland Knights football team.

An impressive home winning streak was snapped by the visiting Rich Central last Friday, as the Olympians edged the Knights 14-13.

You’d have to look to Week 8 of the 2009 season to find the last time KHS lost on Peterson Field—a 27-24 overtime loss to Geneva. The 2009 season-opener against Huntley marked the last time a non-conference opponent won at Kaneland.

“Our defense played very well,” said Knights head coach Tom Fedderly. “We played a good team and our kids had to play a four-quarter game. There were a lot of positives.”

The stat lines on Friday saw the Knights dominate in almost all facets of the game, out-gaining the Olympians 322 to 185 yards, and dominating the time of possession 30:22 to 17:38. The only key stat that RC led was passing, out-gaining the Knights 212-109. The Knights defense held RC to -27 yards rushing and forced two turnovers.

The Knights got on the board first, with a 24-yard field goal by junior Drew Franklin. Rich Central scored almost immediately after on a spectacular 86-yard catch-and-run by Olympian DeQuan Dudley. The Knights blocked the point after attempt to keep the score 6-3.

In the second quarter it was Franklin again, this time with a 30-yard field goal to lock the score up at 6 all. Senior Danny Hammermeister (eight tackles, two for a loss) came up with three big tackles for the Knights late in the second quarter, forcing a punt. With only :20 to go in the quarter, the Knights couldn’t find the endzone.

After penalties pushed RC to a 3rd and 20 in their own zone, senior Brandon Kigyos intercepted DaQuan Richie. Shortly after, junior Tyler Paulson stiff-armed and fought his way 20 yards for the Knights’, touchdown. After a Franklin PAT, the Knights lead was 13-6.

But with 2:14 to go in the third, it was the speedy Dudley again, catching a pass from Richie for 57 yards and a RC touchdown. A two-point conversion attempt was good via Jordan Fuqua, making it 14-13 heading into the fourth quarter.

The final quarter was a seesaw battle of possession. With 1:49 left, Kaneland forced RC to punt on 4th and 25, eventually getting the ball back on RC’s 34 yard line. Kaneland converted on a 4th and 3 with :29 seconds to go. After taking a couple chances to the endzone, it was Franklin’s turn to try to win the game with a field goal with 7.7 seconds left from the Kaneland 18. The junior’s kick missed and RC squeaked away with a hard-fought road victory.

“I was happy how we competed right down to the last play,” Fedderly said. “We made some big plays in the last drive to give us a chance to win. Unfortunately it didn’t work out for us.”

Friday sees the Knights take to the road for the first time in 2014, visiting the 3-0 Yorkville Foxes at Campbell Field. The Foxes have outscored their opponents 119-37 this season, including a 38-24 win at home over Rochelle last week. Last year, head coach Karl Hoinkes led the team to their first playoff berth since 2002. Between his time at Oswego (26 seasons) and Yorkville (4th season), Hoinkes has 205 wins and 103 losses, including two state championships with Oswego. The last time Yorkville defeated the Knights was a 34-13 homecoming win at YHS on Oct. 5, 2002.

Village moves forward with wastewater treatment upgrade

ELBURN—The Elburn Village Board on Monday decided to go forward with an upgrade of the village’s wastewater treatment plant, although the cost will be significantly higher than it had been originally estimated.

The board voted unanimously at a special meeting on Monday night to accept the more than $9.6 million bid from Whittaker Construction and Excavating Inc. based in Earlville, Ill.

Last year, the village’s engineering firm, Engineering Enterprises Inc., had estimated the cost would be about $7.6 million.

According to Public Works Superintendent John Nevenhoven, one of the reasons the bids came in so much higher than the estimate was that a number of these similar projects are currently being done, making the current bidding environment especially tough.

However, EEI project manager Stephen T. Dennison said that there is no guarantee that the prices would go down, and they could go up. Also, Village Administrator Erin Willrett said interest rates would likely be higher later.

In fact, if the IEPA doesn’t close on the loan by Sept. 30, the interest rate on the loan as of Oct. 1 goes up from 1.995 percent to 2.25 percent.

About $5 million of the work is connected to meeting new Illinois Environmental Protection Agency’s standards for removing phosphorus, which will take effect in 2017.

The project, which will begin this fall and could take from 14 to 16 months, includes replacing two older clarifying tanks with a larger one, as well as building a new automated screening system and a new pumping station to replace the old, outdated ones. Some of the parts of the plant are obsolete and unsafe, Nevenhoven said.

“We are just about rebuilding the plant,” he said.

“It’s not a want,” Village President Dave Anderson said. “It needs to be done as soon as possible.”

Nevenhoven again emphasized that the modernization is not meant to increase the plant’s capacity.

“If we never added another single house, we would still have to do this project,” he said.

The plan is for the village to pay for the project with $1.5 million currently in the wastewater treatment plant fund, and the remainder with a low-interest loan through the Illinois Environmental Protection Agency. The loan payments would be spread out over 20 years, and paid for through an increase in residents’ sewer rates.

The Village Board will vote on Monday, Sept. 15 to raise the monthly sewer rates, higher than they would have done so previously, for a final potential cost of $7.87 per 100 cubic feet of water by May 1, 2017. The average household in Elburn uses about 800 cubic feet of water per month.

The plan is to set the rate at $5.17 per 100 cubic feet as of May 2015, with two additional increases scheduled, to reach $6.52 per 100 cubic feet as of May 2016, and the final $7.87 per 100 cubic feet in May 2017.

The current rate is $3.82 per 100 cubic feet. Nevenhoven said the increase for an average household will come to about $10 a month for each of the three years, for a total increase of about $30 per month by 2017.

With future growth, the costs will be spread among more people, and so the final rates may never reach the $7.87 mark.

Trustee Jeff Walter asked if the board should consider raising the monthly base rate instead of the sewer user charge. He also wondered whether the village could restrict the changes related to only complying with the phosphorus-removal standards now and save the rest of the upgrade for later, but Anderson said the improvements are intertwined.

“It’s not like we could go back to outhouses and wells in our backyards again,” trustee William Grabarek said.


Saying goodbye to Conley Farm

For over 15 years, the Conley family, Conley Funeral Home and Conley Outreach Community Services have partnered to purchase, develop and maintain the Conley Farm in Kaneville. The farm has seen countless visitors to its Children’s Prayer Garden, grief events, weddings and family celebrations. It has been a place of healing, hope and celebration.

As the Kaneland community transitions from summer to fall, the Conley Farm is also in transition, as Conley finds it has become necessary to sell the property.

This was an extremely difficult, but necessary business decision, and one that was not made lightly. The farm is privately owned by the Conley family, who has graciously given Conley Outreach a license agreement to use the property at no cost since its purchase. While the sale of the farm may impact some of Conley’s grief events, Conley Outreach’s support groups and all of its community-based programs and the West Towns offices will not be affected.

Conley Outreach will invite the public to one last event at the Conley Farm—a “Farewell to the Farm”—on Sunday, Sept. 28, from 3 to 6 p.m. If you have been one of Conley Farm’s dedicated volunteers, have attended an event or wedding here, or have always meant to visit, Conley would love to see you that day. Come walk the gardens and grounds, enjoy a bonfire, make s’mores and spend a little time on the bridge to give thanks for all the ways this farm has blessed the local community.

For more information about the Farm Farewell or Conley Outreach’s programs, call (630) 365-2880.


Lauzen addresses Elburn Chamber

Photo: Kane County Board Chairman Chris Lauzen (right) and Elburn
Village President Dave Anderson share a laugh prior to Lauzen’s State of the
County address on Sept. 4. Photo by Susan O’Neill

Kane County Chairman issues State of the County address
ELBURN—Kane County Board Chairman Chris Lauzen took an opportunity at the Sept. 4 Elburn Chamber of Commerce meeting to tell chamber members about his accomplishments during his first two years as chairman.

Lauzen, who had been the 25th district state senator before his successful run for the board chairmanship, began his state of the county address by saying that his position with the county is “so much better” than his tenure as an Illinois state senator.

“You can actually do something here,” he said. “And if there’s something wrong, it’s not somebody else’s fault. If there’s something wrong, it’s my fault and I need to fix it.”

Lauzen began his list of accomplishments for his first two years by pointing out that Kane County’s property tax levy has been frozen since 2011, and although this has been a tough year, he hopes to continue that practice. Acknowledging that people would prefer to have their taxes go down, he said his goal for the county is to “just don’t make it worse.”

He said that the county recently created Kane County Connects, an online social media initiative that is meant to inform people within the county about issues and events of interest to them. Lauzen said that former newspaper reporter and editor Rick Nagel has taken this initiative from an audience of zero six months ago to a reach of 13,200. He encouraged the audience members to make use of it to get the word out about various events.

Also on the list of accomplishments was the groundbreaking this year for a new shooting range for the Kane County Sheriff’s Office, which Lauzen said was an important tool for deputies to keep up their skills.

“If there’s a problem, you want them to shoot straight, and to do that, you’ve got to practice,” he said.

Lauzen said that other law enforcement departments in the area are welcome to use the range, as well.

He also mentioned the Longmeadow Parkway, a $120 million transportation project in the north of the county, and said that the county was able to bring $45 million of state money here to help pay for the project.

Lauzen had some ideas for pension reform at the state level, including capping the abuses, raising the retirement age from 55 to 62 years, and scaling back the cost of living increases (COLA), which are currently at a rate of 3 percent every year.

However, he said that fixing the problem takes political will, and it takes at least a two-party system. He encouraged the business leaders in the audience to get out and vote in November, as well as using their influence to get others to do the same.

“We’re smart enough to understand that it’s time for a change,” he said. “Spread your influence; get your neighbors out to vote.”

TransCanada, School Board discuss upcoming pipeline project

KANELAND—Representatives from TransCanada on Monday gave a presentation about the pipeline construction set to take place on the east side of Kaneland High School.

The objective of the presentation was to answer questions from board members.

TransCanada owns the three pipelines that contain natural gas located on the east side of Kaneland High School. The parallel pipes are underground and run north and south.

Gretchen Dewailly Krueger, external communications for TransCanada, said this week that the company will change out 3,320 feet of pipe on each pipeline.

According to Curtis Parker, TransCanada’s Director of Pipeline Integrity, TransCanada supplies natural gas to places like Wisconsin, northern Illinois and local gas companies.

Construction at the high school is tentatively set to begin Monday, Sept. 15, and end in early November. TransCanada will finish property and recreational fields restoration from late November until spring 2015.

Construction entails replacing pipeline sections with a thicker wall and a higher strength pipe. Parker explained that regulations have changed, and the company has met a new category to either “lower pressure or change out the pipeline.”

He said that the company needs to resume operating “before winter heating season comes.” Parker explained that if that did not happen, there would be a risk of people not being able to heat their homes.

“We’ll need full normal operating pressure,” Parker said.

The reason for the project is because of increase usage of the pipeline area. Groups that are affected by this project and often use the area include Kaneland High School Band, Kaneland Future Farmers of America, Kaneland Youth Soccer Organization and Kaneland United Soccer Club.

Parker acknowledged that the timing of the project is “not ideal.”

“It is an inconvenience,” Parker said. “We apologize for that.”

Parker touched upon the topic of safety, as well.

“Safety is a priority for TransCanada,” he said.

Parker added that a traffic plan will be developed, and the company will work with Kaneland High School.

A fence will be erected to surround the worksite. Dewailly Krueger said the fences will be 3,710 feet in length by 150 feet in width.

Parker said there will be 24-hour local security that includes a check-in and check-out process. Prospective entrants will have to show an ID.

Parker noted that the pipeline system has been in Kaneland for more than 60 years.

“We consider ourself part of this community,” he said.

Dr. Julie-Ann Fuchs, Kaneland assistant superintendent for business, wrote in a report that one of the first things done in the project is to “turn off and flush the pipes prior to replacement.”

“While one pipe is being replaced, the others are still operational,” Fuchs wrote.

School Board Vice President Teresa Witt questioned where the runoff goes when the pipes are flushed. Parker said that the company is “still looking for a specific way to discharge.”

School Board trustee Tony Valente expressed interest in moving the project to the summertime.

“I have a concern with the air quality,” said Valente, who is a Kaneland parent.

“The project can’t wait,” Parker said. “We need to meet those regulations and the heating system. I’m a parent, too. This project is my responsibility.”

School Board member Veronica Bruhl questioned if the project’s noise would affect the high school students. Parker said that the mesh material on the fence would reduce both noise and dust, and the noise would occur at a time that would not “impact the school hours.”

Background checks will be conducted by the primary contractor, Parker said. There will be between 60 to 70 workers on the project.

Charlie Savely, area manager for TransCanada, said that there will be 30 to 40 workers during daytime and nighttime.

School Board President Cheryl Krauspe asked if the project will require big lights.

“We have to have lights,” Savely said.

School Board member Pedro Rivas questioned if the area could be blocked off and not used till the summer. Parker called that plan a “temporary remedy” and repeated that TransCanada had to meet regulations.


Kaneland Rivals Project: Team of Rivals

Editors note: This is part one of a three-part series about Kaneland’s rivals—both current and historical. Part one focuses on more contemporary rivals, part two will feature a look at historical rivals, while part three will focus on our survey results. We encourage you to take our survey.
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Community gives take on favorite storied programs that have crossed Kaneland’s path
KANELAND—Since forming in the late 1950s, Kaneland athletic travels have taken many athletes to Illinois sports meccas.

Countless Knights and Lady Knights have done well enough to join sports showcases in Peoria, Normal and Joliet.

Those stops usually preceded athletic glory given to the black and silver (and sometimes orange).

But there’s just something about the more local programs Kaneland has faced throughout its time that brings a little more fervor and intensity. Contests for State glory in places like Detweiler Park in Peoria, or Silver Cross Field in Joliet are memorable, in part, because of the stakes involved at the end of a particular season.

However, there remains other times where it doesn’t matter the month or the standings— it’s just two rival schools trying to best one another on the pitch, gridiron or court.

Kaneland has dealt with and continues to deal with storied schools to this day, since entering conference play in groups like the Little Eight, Little Seven, Suburban Prairie and Western Sun before hooking up with the Northern Illinois Big XII.

Schools like Genoa-Kingston and Hiawatha would give way to sustained conference rivals like Sycamore and Yorkville, while the Knights kept touch with Burlington Central and Geneva with or without a conference rival at stake.

In future issues, the Elburn Herald looks to get opinions and thoughts from a variety of people associated with Kaneland athletics. They coached and played under the Kaneland Knight banner, and have their own thoughts on who the biggest rival is, favorite rival to beat, and who they would have liked to face more often. You’ll also read about historical rivals that don’t cross Kaneland’s path much anymore, and readers will have a chance to mark their own opinion with a survey.

Andy Drendel, former cross country and track asset, and now a member of the KHS coaching staff for multiple sports, thinks the most noteworthy rivals were the more conventional ones—Sycamore and Yorkville.

“(Kaneland’s) been in the same conference since the Little Seven days; they are bordering schools with similar enrollment size,” Drendel says.

KHS girls basketball coach Ernie Colombe always gets geared up for Sycamore, as well.

“They’re similar size, and both schools have athletes who compete hard every contest. The two schools have been in the same conference for awhile, which helps build rivalries,” Colombe said. “I really enjoy playing all of our conference schools, but if I had to pick one, it would be Sycamore.”

David Dudzinski, who’s seen two children pass through Kaneland elite athletic history thus far, has a similar perspective on rival No. 1, taking over from another school in the recent past.

“When we were coming into this 15 to 20 years ago, it was always Sycamore. (It was) maybe proximity, but when I spoke to the people that went to school there in the ‘80s, that was it,” Dudzinski said. ”It seemed like Batavia, more than most schools east. It was always a heated battle, football or basketball. They had their chants, and it made for an electric atmosphere, especially when they were in the same conference.”

Former volleyball coach Todd Weimer had his favorites to beat while manning the court sidelines.

“When I was coaching, it was always Geneva and DeKalb,” Weimer said. “The girls knew almost all the players from Geneva. And as far as DeKalb goes, the coaches knew each other, and the rivalry was intense on the court and in the stands at both places. We got after Sycamore as well in the last three years when I was at Kaneland, as well, so it was fun to get them after all the years they beat us.”

Head boys cross country coach Chad Clarey feels one can enjoy the local competition in addition to having the drive to win.

“I enjoy running with Sycamore and Burlington Central,” Clarey said. “Both schools are very well coached in cross country, and they cultivate State-caliber runners on an annual basis. Our portion of the state is a hotbed for cross country talent. There’s been a history of strong track programs at BC and Kaneland. When a team does a victory lap on your home track and sings, it leaves a bit of a bitter taste that one can’t shake. Something like that can add to the rivalry, I guess.”


Perfect week

Photo: Senior Brandon Park notched two victories in as many meets, while freshman Matthew Richtman was second at Elburn Woods Tuesday. Photo by Ben Draper

Invite win and flawless run at home round out boys cross country week
KANELAND—Senior Brandon Park can’t complain. It’s been two individual titles to go along with two-straight wins for the Knights cross country crew.

On Saturday, Park was the champion at the inaugural Harvest Fall Classic, hosted by Harvest Christian in Elgin, Ill. His effort of 17 minutes even bolstered a strong showing by the rest of the roster en route to a 47-60 win over runner-up Elk Grove.

“Brandon took over the lead in the first mile of the race,” said KHS coach Chad Clarey. “A pair of Elmwood Park runners, who had beaten him earlier in the week, made it a great race. In the final 400 meters, Park simply wanted it more and put on an impressive surge to the finish.”

Senior Mitch Reger (sixth) and junior Will Kuipers (seventh) cracked the top 10, finishing in 17:46 and 17:49, respectively.

“It was a very competitive day out of that top three,” Clarey added.

Junior Sean Spaetzel (15th, 18:25) and James Walker (18th, 18:48) rounded out the KHS scoring five, while Zach Kurz (21st, 19:36) and Alex Gale (22nd, 19:43) rounded out the top seven.

Also running in the varsity race but not factoring in the scoring were juniors Austin Parks (27th, 20:22), Ben Smith (34th, 21:54) and Brandon Cruz (37th, 22:54).

In the 2 mile junior varsity race, the Knights placed seven runners in the top 11. Freshman Matthew Richtman won in 11:39.

On Tuesday, the likes of East Aurora, IMSA and Yorkville came calling to what would be the only time the Kaneland cross country team will compete at their usual home course of Elburn Woods. Kaneland is scheduled to host an IHSA Sectional Nov. 1 at the high school, and will also run their annual Eddington Invitational at KHS, as well.

The Knights took advantage of their one chance to compete in “The Woods” by sweeping the top six spots and scoring a perfect 15-point victory.

Park again notched an individual victory, crossing the finish line in 17:53. He was followed by Richtman (18:01), Spaetzel (18:07), Reger (18:27) and Kuipers (18:29) before the first non-Knight finished 18 seconds behind in sixth.

Clarey was especially pleased with how his seniors competed in their final go-round at their usual home.

“The seniors took pride in their last run on their ‘least’ favorite course,” Clarey said. “Park took hold early and pushed hard through the finish. Reger battled to stay within reach of the leaders. Walker ran with a great deal of pride to hold off a charging teammate. Josh Kasap also demonstrated the same courage and will to win, out-kicking a teammate.

“All of our seniors have been the perfect fits for leadership of this year’s team, which is filled with youth and new runners. I’m very proud of their effort and dedication,” Clarey said.

The Knights now set their sights on Saturday’s First to the Finish invitational at Peoria’s Detweiller Park, which is also home to the IHSA State Meet. Thirteen of the top 25 teams in DyestatIL.com’s most recent 2A poll be be in attendance. The 2A boys race runs at 11 a.m.


Tough test vs. IMSA sees Lady Knights prevail

Photo: The Lady Knights tennis team held on to a 4-3 victory over visiting IMSA Tuesday. Senior Sammie Schrepferman had the lone singles win for KHS. Photo by Mary Paulson

MAPLE PARK—Kaneland’s tennis team came out on the right side of a 4-3 match over visiting IMSA Tuesday.

At singles, Kaneland’s lone victory went to senior Sammie Schrepferman, winning 6-1, 6-1 over IMSA’s Renu Varadheeswaran. However, IMSA would get the upperhand in the next two singles matches, with KHS junior Emily Lutter falling 6-1, 4-6, 0-6, and senior Emily Grams losing 0-6, 0-6.

The doubles prevailed for the Lady Knights, as they went 3-1 to secure the victory.

The top tandem of seniors Jelly Emmanouil and Madi Jurcenko won 6-1, 6-1, while No. 2 duo of seniors Colleen Lander and Stephanie Karolewicz won a close 7-5, 6-4 match.

The No. 3 doubles team of seniors Mallory Dugan and Anna Wendling fell to their IMSA counterparts 2-6, 3-6 before the No. 4 team of juniors Katelyn Blazynski and Emily Mirocha sealed the KHS team victory with a 7-5, 7-5 win.

Next up for the KHS tennis team is an away match at Sycamore tonight at 4:30 p.m. before Saturday’s Waubonsie Valley Challenge at 8 a.m.

Photos by Mary Paulson

Volleyball looks for Centennial challenge

KANELAND—Kaneland volleyball now has 10 matches under its jersey, all in large invite fashion.

Now at 6-5, the volleyball crew must hope the action this past weekend in Champaign, Ill., and the previous week in Wheaton, Ill., has prepared them for the rigors of Northern Illinois Big XII battles.

After a 2-3 finish at Wheaton North last week, the Lady Knights travelled for the first time to the Centennial Charger Invite down at Champaign Centennial High School and went 3-2, a slight improvement over the closer gathering.

Kaneland first lost to La Grange’s Nazareth Academy by a final of 25-17, 25-13. KHS then rebounded by beating Bloomington Central Catholic in a 25-22, 22-25, 15-13 affair, and then beat East Peoria 25-22, 25-16. Host Champaign Central took care of the visitors 25-17, 25-20, before KHS solved Mahomet-Seymour in a 25-19, 21-25, 15-9 matchup.

By virtue of her performance through five matches, the Lady Knights’ Ellie Dunn was named to the all-tournament team.

Cyndi Violett, KHS head coach, also saw plenty of other nice efforts.

“Riley Hannula and Anna Senese had a big weekend for us leading the team, with Ellie Dunn in kills,” Violett said.

A trip like the Charger Invite is more than a chance to visit an out-of-the-way tournament.

“The big weekend overnight invites is a great opportunity to bond as a team. It’s more than just the tournament. It’s the dinner, bus ride and hotel stay with the girls,” Violett said.

Additonally, against Montini Catholic in Lombard, Ill., the Lady Knights won 25-18, 26-24 over the Broncos. Dunn had seven kills, four sevice points, an ace and eight digs. Hannula had two kills, one block and two service points. Senese had three kills and five service points, while Hannah Nauert had one block, three digs and eight assists. Holly Fedderly also had six assists.

On Thursday, Kaneland hosts IMSA.


Kaneland 49ers

Photo: Junior Jake Marczuk (left) had a big second game under center for the Knights, throwing for 221 yards and four touchdowns. Photos by Mary Paulson

Knights have solid non-conference win vs. visiting Marshall
KANELAND—Friday’s matchup between Kaneland and Chicago’s Marshall on the football field had fewer weather hazards, but the same positive result for KHS.

The 49-6 win for Kaneland had area fans thinking T.G.I.F. at the end of the night.

Containing a physical Commandos team on both sides of the ball, the Knights had a smoother beginning than last week’s win over Brooks Prep of Chicago, and scored touchdowns on four of its first five possessions.

“We had a bunch of fundamental mistakes last week that we focused on in practice, and we wanted to get it right, right away,” KHS coach Tom Fedderly said.

Kaneland begins 2-0 for the fifth consecutive season, and hasn’t lost a non-conference matchup since a Week Two loss against Huntley in 2009.

QB Jake Marczuk went 20-for-26 on the often rainy night for 221 yards and four touchdown throws. Wideout Connor Fedderly had 123 yards and a TD on 10 catches.

“Last year, I didn’t have a huge role, and I knew my role. This year, the team is counting on me. We’re really happy to get a win today,” Fedderly said.

Through two weeks, the senior captain is getting some idea of what the Knights offer week in and week out.

“The team’s really hard working. Everyone’s really tough and really starting to come together. This is one of the hardest-working seasons we’ve had,” Fedderly said.

Additionally, Mitch Groen had 59 yards receiving on six catches, while target Tyler Paulson also had 59 yards on four catches and a touchdown.

KHS won the total yards battle handily, 356-92.

The first drive for Kaneland went six plays and 44 yards, as Paulson caught a bullet pass from 15 yards out for the touchdown, and Marczuk rescued a botched point-after by tossing to Isaiah Baerenklau for an 8-0 edge with 9:12 left in the first quarter.

Kevin Fuchs ended the second scoring drive with a 3-yard touchdown catch with 5:05 to go that made it 15-0. Marshall scored its lone touchdown on the first play of the second quarter on a 24-yard touchdown pass to close within 15-6 with just six ticks gone in the frame.

Kaneland’s next scoring drive ended on a Marczuk 4-yard scramble to make it 22-6 with 4:46 to go in the half, while the Knights’ next drive went 50 yards on seven plays, ending in Fedderly’s 32-yard snag in the end zone on fourth down. The score made it 29-6 with 1:08 before halftime.

The third-quarter flurry ended any chance of a Commando comeback once and for all, beginning with Kaneland’s special teams swarming Marshall’s punt attempt, and then scoring on a Groen catch from 6 yards out three minutes into second-half play for a 36-6 edge.

After a Kyle Diehl interception, Alec Aureilo converted two plays later on a three-yard scamper with 6:31 to go in the third for a 43-6 margin. The scoring closed with 9:50 remaining in the contest on a 16-yard run by Giovanni Regalado to make it 49-6.

Coach Fedderly feels good about what the gelling Knights are capable of with seven games to go.

“What I know is that these guys are going to play hard. There’s no egos on the team, they just want to play football. Marshall had a lot of talent over there (tonight), and the coach did a really good job,” Fedderly said.

On Friday, Sept. 12, the Knights play Olympia Fields outpost Rich Central. The Olympians come into Maple Park at 1-1, including a 36-20 loss to Plainfield East and a 48-0 shutout of Chicago’s Kenwood Academy.

Letter: ‘Never forget’ Sept. 11, 2001

As we look back upon the events that occurred on this fateful day that left an indelible mark on the world, Sept. 11, 2001, it is very hard to believe that it’s been 13 years since the largest attack on American soil took over 3,000 lives in New York City, the Pentagon and Shanksville, Penn.

The news today is filled with reports of terror attacks around the world, as well as continued threats to the US and its allies, both here and abroad.
Many Homeland Security staffers and national experts have indicated that they are very concerned about the recent spate of horrific events occurring worldwide, and that the “bad guys” (or whatever we choose to call them) are focusing on the US, its allies and other western interests.

One term that keeps coming to the surface is “homegrown violent extremists” who have western ties, US and European passports, and are fighting overseas. The amount of people fitting into that definition is growing at an alarming rate. The definition may vary a bit from agency to agency, but the fact remains that there are those among us that want to wreak havoc on our way of life.

The sad fact is, violent extremism is not a new phenomenon. My very first deployment was to the Oklahoma City Bombing on April 19, 1995, where Timothy McVeigh killed 169 innocent people (including infants and children) at the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building bombing in Oklahoma City.

British author Aldous Huxley so eloquently stated in “Brave New Word” that “Eternal vigilance is not only the price of liberty; eternal vigilance is the price of human decency.”

This has been quoted over the years as simply, “The price of freedom is eternal vigilance” that is the basic tenet of what we really need to adhere to today.

I submit to each and every one of you that we must be vigilant, but not be vigilantes; we must be aware of what does and does not look right. The U.S. Department of Homeland Security has brought up the phrase “If you see something, say something.” And I couldn’t agree more.

Many of the news commentators the last several weeks (regardless of the network) have brought up again and again that the threat posed to U.S. interests here and overseas are in some level of peril from violent extremists of any type. I concur that self-radicalization has been growing at an alarming rate.

The next event that hurts our society may not be a Sept. 11 type of attack—it may be smaller, more frequent or larger than Sept. 11, 2001. The noise and chatter we have all heard on the news recently is certainly alarming. There have been over 75 “active shooter” type events since the Sandy Hook massacre that occurred in Connecticut in December 2012. We don’t know what we don’t know, except that the time around any anniversary is a time for caution and increased awareness.

I have trained many people, agencies and organizations since Sept. 11 on awareness, training and “collecting and connecting the dots.” We must be right 100 percent of the time; the bad guys only have to be right once.

Take the time now to pause and remember those that gave their lives on Sept. 11, 2001, in New York, the Pentagon and in Pennsylvania, and never forget. Let us not forget their sacrifices that their families feel every day. We owe it to them to never forget.

Two weeks before Sept. 11, 2001, I was attending training at the National Fire Academy in Emmitsburg, Md., and I took a quick side trip on the weekend to the Gettysburg national monument in Pennsylvania. There, I copied the Gettysburg address into a small pocket notebook.

I actually carried that notebook with me while I was deployed to Ground Zero for nearly 100 days, and as I looked at the speech, a sentence stuck in my mind that, to this day, comes back to me over and over again. “That from these honored dead we take increased devotion to that cause for which they here gave the last full measure of devotion—that we here highly resolve these dead shall not have died in vain; that the nation shall have a new birth of freedom; and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth.” Abraham Lincoln, Gettysburg, Penn., Nov. 19, 1863.

Take the time to remember those people who came before us, who fought for our freedom, and remember their ultimate sacrifice. We can never forget.

Michael J. Fagel
Sugar Grove

Editorial: Reflecting on the events of Sept. 11, 2001

It’s hard to believe that today marks the 13th anniversary of the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center in New York City, the Pentagon in Arlington County, Virginia, and United Airlines Flight 93, which crashed in Stoneycreek Township, Penn. And while some historic events can lose a little bit of their cultural impact as time goes on, there’s absolutely no doubt that the horrific and terrifying images associated with Sept. 11, 2001, are as fresh in our minds today as they were 13 years ago, when an ordinary Tuesday morning turned into one of the most surreal, tragic sequences in the history of the United States of America.

This week’s Letter to the Editor section features a heartfelt, must-read entry from Mike Fagel, who was deployed as a first responder to Ground Zero in New York City for nearly 100 days following the Sept. 11 attacks. In his letter, Fagel states that he visited Gettysburg battlefield in Pennsylvania just two weeks prior to the terrorist attacks, and had actually copied the Gettysburg address into a small pocket notebook that he eventually carried with him while deployed to Ground Zero. That address contains a particular sentence that rang especially true for Fagel as he aided the relief effort in New York City.

Further, the Kaneland community today has an opportunity to hear a firsthand account from someone who survived the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks. Joe Dittmar, one of the survivors of the attacks on New York’s World Trade Center, will again share his story, this time at Waubonsee Community College in Sugar Grove.

The special presentation will begin at 7 p.m. in the auditorium on Waubonsee’s Sugar Grove Campus, Route 47 at Waubonsee Drive. Tickets are $10 and can be purchased at www.waubonseetickets.com.

The session will offer those in attendance the chance to not only hear from one who witnessed and felt the terrorist attacks firsthand, but to remember the events of that day and reflect upon what they still mean to us today.

Dittmar was on the 105th floor of 2 World Trade Center (the south tower), attending a routine business meeting with representatives of other insurance companies when terrorists piloted an airliner into the north tower, 1 World Trade Center. He later learned he was one of only seven survivors out of 54 in attendance at the meeting on the 105th floor that morning.

While Dittmar’s presentation is steeped with facts and observations of historic proportions, it also incorporates reflections on what was learned that day and the lessons we should continue to teach.

Thirteen years later, the wounds left by the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks are still fresh. So when we look back on that fateful Tuesday, it’s as important as ever to remember all of those who lost their lives as a result of the attacks. As Mr. Fagel stated in his letter, “Never forget.”

We won’t.

Maple Park Police announces Special Olympics fundraiser

MAPLE PARK—The Maple Park Police Department recently announced that it will hold a Pulling for Special Olympics fundraiser on Saturday, Sept. 20, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. at 5N213 County Line Road, Maple Park. Participants can pay for a box of shells and then enjoy a laid-back social shoot, while also donating to the Special Olympics.

“Maple Park’s Special Olympic fundraising is on track to becoming a state record,” said Maple Park Police Chief Mike Acosta.


Kaneland tabs Goier as interim superintendent

KANELAND—The search for a new interim Kaneland superintendent has concluded.

The Kaneland School Board on Tuesday unanimously agreed to hire Dr. Renee Goier of Sugar Grove as interim superintendent. Board member Pedro Rivas was absent from the meeting.

The School Board on Tuesday also agreed to accept the resignation of former interim superintendent Dr. Ken Sorrick, who stepped down from the position just one day after the School Board approved his hire on Aug. 25.

Goier will work up to 100 days and receive a salary of $80,000.

“The board selected Dr. Goier based on her extensive, professional leadership and student-centered decision making,” said School Board President Cheryl Krauspe during the meeting.

Goier, a retiree, was a superintendent for Deerfield Public Schools District 109, and has experience as a teacher, gifted coordinator, elementary and middle school principal and assistant superintendent.

Krauspe talked after the meeting about what made Goier a standout selection.

“She was the strongest in terms of her overall perspective and experience throughout a K-12 career,” Krauspe said. “She has worked at every level from pre-school to college, so I think she has an expertise in every grade level.”

Krauspe also reflected on how it felt to get a second interim superintendent.

“I couldn’t be more delighted that she is as excited as she is,” Krauspe said. “That’s a relief. She is ready to hit the ground running.”

School Board Vice President Teresa Witt said Goier has a strong Kaneland connection with family and grandchildren who attend District 302.

“I think that’s a positive,” Witt said. “She’s also very professional and certainly has the resume to back that up. And I think she’s going to be a good choice.”

Details emerge regarding Sorrick resignation letter

KANELAND—The Kaneland School Board on Aug. 25 approved the hire of Dr. Ken Sorrick as interim Kaneland superintendent.

The next day, Sorrick resigned from the position.

Sorrick on Aug. 26 wrote a letter to Kaneland Board President Cheryl Krauspe detailing why he resigned the day after he was approved to serve as interim superintendent.

“Please forgive me, but I could not sleep last night, and for personal reasons, I just can’t take this job,” Sorrick wrote. “My skills are not designed for dealing with a certain personality on the board. It is not a good match. I would not be able to accomplish what your district needs.”

Sorrick, a Plainfield resident, had been a superintendent for North Palos School District, and also had experience as a teacher, dean, assistant principal, and elementary and high school principal.

According to Krauspe, Sorrick had led the North Palos School District to receive the Illinois State Academic Excellence Award and Lincoln Foundation’s Bronze Award for Organizational Excellence.

“He’s a leader in every sense of the word,” Krauspe said at the Aug. 25 meeting.

Sorrick had been approved by the majority of the Kaneland School Board at that meeting, with the exception of Tony Valente. School Board Vice President Teresa Witt was absent from the meeting.

Sorrick did not directly name the board member in question.

“The way a certain board member disrespects you, disrespects the superintendent, disrespects the assistant superintendent, disrespected your union representative and disrespected me would make it difficult or impossible for me to accomplish some of the basic tasks of being a superintendent,” Sorrick wrote. “He does not function in a business-like manner, and he turns concerns into personal attacks on others. He does not want to solve problems; he wants to create problems.”

Sorrick further noted that the board member walked out of executive session when the superintendent search was being discussed, and also made an accusation of unethical behavior.

“When he made the comments about my contract, in a public meeting, in front of the press, he crossed the line,” Sorrick wrote. “He did not make me feel welcome, and I do not want to work anywhere my services are not valued.”

Sorrick also took issue that the media questioned him about 100 days because of comments from said board member. Because Sorrick is retired, he can only work up to 100 days due to limits set by the Teachers’ Retirement System.

In regard to Sorrick’s limited workdays, Valente said that his concern is that there could be a “large portion of time without a superintendent,” adding that there may not be a superintendent from December to March. He gave scenarios of things that could happen in February, such as a crisis or the need to have a master schedule and staffing for the next school year.

“We really needed to find somebody who was conducive of our time schedule,” Valente said during the Aug. 25 meeting. “I’m against this contract.”

When asked this week if he agreed that Sorrick was referring to him as the “certain board member,” Valente did not confirm that it was him.

“I don’t know,” Valente said. “I can’t look in his mind and know what he’s thinking or who he’s talking about. He never said anything to me specifically that that’s what it’s about, that it’s about me.”

Valente took issue with Sorrick bringing up what happened at executive session, saying that should not be shared with the public.

Valente also spoke on how Sorrick felt disrespected.

“I know he felt disrespected because someone questioned him,” Valente said. “And that’s what we do. I’ve been in education for well over 20 years. If I felt disrespected every time someone questioned me, I wouldn’t be in this field anymore.”

Valente said it was “not the worst thing for him to resign.”

Sorrick was set to receive a salary of $90,000 to work up to 100 days.

“If it’s somebody who can’t handle difficult questions, I think it was a smart move on his part to resign,” Valente said. “This is not a school district where you’re going to skate through. And I don’t mean that in a negative way. It’s a district where people are going to ask tough questions. And we expect answers.”

Valente spoke about challenges when it comes to jobs.

“When I look at positions, when I look for jobs, I look for challenges,” Valente said. “And those challenges are what I try to overcome. If he saw a challenge, he should have really run to that challenge. Not run away from it.”

Sorrick had expressed his plan to “keep the district running” after attending his first board meeting last week.

“I hope I can help out, help the district out,” Sorrick said on Aug. 25. “Really, I think the main goal that the district has is to find a permanent superintendent. And so I’m going to help them out with that search and get that process going. And I think it will bring more stability to the district once you have that position filled.”

Competitive bidding environment could cost village

ELBURN—Engineering Enterprises, Inc. representatives told Village Board members on Monday that the bids to do a project were likely to come in higher than they had anticipated, due to increased activity in projects similar to Elburn’s wastewater treatment plant modernization.

To offset those costs, EEI proposed a modification in the depth of the raw sewage pump station, taking it down 30 feet as opposed to the proposed 40-50 feet in the plan. The deadline for bidders to respond was extended a week to accommodate these changes, from Aug. 28 to Sept. 4.

A significant portion of the funding for the $6.5 million project will come from a loan from the Illinois Environmental Protection Agency, which typically takes at least one month to finalize loan agreements. The current interest rate from the IEPA is 1.995 percent, set to increase to 2.225 percent as of Oct. 1, the start of the state agency’s next fiscal year.

If the loan from the IEPA is not finalized by Sept. 30, this could mean a difference of $400,000 to the cost of the project.

EEI requested the village hold a special meeting on Monday, Sept. 8, to award the project to a bidder and get the process moving as quickly as possible.

There is still a chance that the IEPA would not be able to process the loan agreements in time to meet the end of fiscal year deadline. If that happens, trustee Ken Anderson asked if it would be preferable to wait for another construction cycle to see if the bidding environment would improve.

The board will meet on Sept. 8 to award the project.

Sugar Grove discusses I-88 corridor land use

SUGAR GROVE—The Sugar Grove Village Board on Tuesday discussed general long-range plans for land use near the future I-88 corridor. The topic of where agricultural land and development would be placed was the center of the board’s discussion.

The question of whether or not to limit the amount of land labeled as agricultural land use was brought up during the meeting. Village Board trustee Kevin Geary discussed the option of not predetermining the use of the land.

“We could not predetermine it, but we could wait (until) a user came along,” Geary said. “It’s like a holding place. North of the golf course, we’ve always seen it as residential; north and east corridor was going to be residential. As we push to our edges, I have a problem identifying it as agricultural when it could be more of a office/retail/industrial.”

Development Director Walter Magdziarz, explained a couple of problems with labeling land for office/retail/industrial use.

“There hasn’t been any office development in the suburbs lately,” Magdziarz said. “It’s only in Chicago where the labor force is. It’s more business park rather than industrial. Industrial has a negative connotation to it.”

Several board members, including Geary, mentioned that they liked the term “business park” rather than “industrial.”

“I would support using the term business park and not industrial,” Geary said. “I think we’re looking for a more general term, and I think business park is fitting.”

Magdziarz mentioned the process and research that they will use to determine different land uses.

“We will look at natural conditions, landscape and condition of the roads, and after that, some lines might move or disappear,” he said. “I would like to have one or two meetings before a public hearing. I think it’s still conceivable that we could have a public hearing by the end of the year. If not December, I think we could have it in January.”


Photos: Putting the ‘fun’ in Fun Fest

The annual Maple Park Fun Fest took place Saturday through Monday in Maple Park. This year’s event saw sumo wrestling, a car show, parade, pancake breakfast, softball tournament, toilet bowl race, fireworks as well as several other family-friendly activities. Sumo wrestlers Michael Thorton (above), 12, and Robby Erickson, 12, of Hinckley, match one another Saturday afternoon at County Line Customs and Collision, Inc.

Photos by Lynn Logan

School Board discusses pipeline construction project

KANELAND—The Kaneland School Board recently discussed the safety of a pipeline construction project set for later this month.

TransCanada will be working on the natural gas pipelines, which it owns. The area is on the east side of Kaneland High School and will be fenced off. The pipelines total 150 feet in length.

School Board member Tony Valente questioned whether the project could be stopped.

“My child is there,” Valente said. “I could imagine what could happen.”

Valente said that someone could light a match in the area, and then made a “kaboom” noise to indicate a possible explosion.

Dr. Julie-Ann Fuchs, Kaneland assistant superintendent for business, spoke on behalf of TransCanada, noting that the company empties the lines of natural gas.

Fuchs confirmed this week that the project will entail replacing pipeline sections with a thicker wall and a higher strength pipe.

Groups that will be affected by the construction project include the Kaneland High School Band, Kaneland Future Farmers of America, Kaneland Youth Soccer Organization and Kaneland United Soccer Club.

According to Fuchs, the project is necessary because of the the aforementioned groups’ useage of the area—a detail discoved when TransCanada did a flyover to review the property use.

“(TransCanada) noticed an increase of students and/or people using the area near the pipeline,” Fuchs said.
She said that nothing has happened to the pipes.

“It’s just that (the project) is going to add an extra measure of safety and security to their already safe and reliable system,” Fuchs said.

The company will have 24-hour security to make sure the area is secure.

TransCanada will finish property and recreational fields restoration from late November until spring 2015.

Representatives from TransCanada will answer board members’ questions at the next meeting, Monday, Sept. 8, at 7 p.m. at Kaneland Harter Middle School.


Knight football wins 10th-straight opener

Photo: Senior Connor Fedderly had six catches for 67 yards and two touchdowns for the Knights on Saturday. Photo by Mary Paulson

24-hour delay, tough beginning leads to 30-8 win over Brooks
KANELAND—Kaneland faithful and fans of decent weather probably hope Kaneland stops meeting Brooks Prep of Chicago like this.

For the second consecutive year, the Knights and Eagles were delayed due to stormy weather, postponing football’s season opener by 24 hours. After a leg injury to running back Isaac Swithers on his first carry, and three fumbles on Kaneland’s first three drives, the defense came up with key stops. After QB Jake Marczuk’s initial TD pass to Tyler Paulson in the first quarter, things settled down en route to a 30-8 win.

KHS has won 10 consecutive season openers, and four straight against the Eagles. The delay was the third such occurrence in eight seasons for KHS football, also happening before the 2007 season opener. It marked the third straight Saturday meeting between Kaneland and Brooks.

Kaneland has gone undefeated in regular season home encounters since an overtime loss to Geneva in Week 8 of 2009. The last home loss at Peterson Field was on Oct. 31, 2009, in a first-round loss to Sycamore.

Marczuk went 11-for-22 for 176 yards and four touchdowns in his first varsity action. Connor Fedderly caught six passes for 67 yards, while Paulson caught two passes, both TD’s for 65 yards. Kaneland was actually outgained by Brooks in total yards, 265-228.

“They had some really good kids rushing the passer, and we had to make our adjustments up front,” KHS coach Tom Fedderly said. “But, we have kids that can make plays and we used the spread offense, where one play looks bad and then the next is a 70-yard touchdown.”

On Kaneland’s second play from scrimmage after Brooks botched a field goal attempt, Swithers coughed up the ball and sustained an injury, only to return to action in the fourth quarter. Brooks went four-and-out, leading to Kaneland’s Alec Aurelio fumbling on Kaneland’s next drive. After Brooks couldn’t convert on fourth down, Marczuk would cough up the ball on the third play of the next drive.

Brooks was forced to punt, and an errant snap was corralled by the punter, only to be swarmed by Mitch Groen. With KHS setting up shop at the 12-yard line, Marczuk found Paulson in the end zone for a TD pass with 4:16 remaining in the first quarter.

After a Brandon Kigyos pick, Kaneland’s drive ended in a three-yard scoring pass to Fedderly for a 13-0 edge with 9:49 remaining in the second quarter.

Austin Vickery pounced on a fumble giving possession back to Kaneland, and Marczuk found Fedderly on a fade for a 10-yard touchdown pass just 23 seconds after the last score for a 20-0 edge.

Eric Matthews called his own number for Brooks for an eight-yard touchdown run, followed by a two-point try to make it 20-8 with 6:05 remaining in the second quarter.

Later, Drew Franklin’s first varsity field goal try from 25 yards out was good with 1:38 left in the half for a 23-8 lead before the break.

After a scoreless third frame, the Knights cinched Saturday night on a bomb to Paulsen for a 53-yard scoring strike as he outran the Brooks secondary to make it 30-8 just 20 seconds into fourth quarter play.

Paulson was glad to leave Peterson Field with a victory which he contributed heavily.

“Being my first varsity game, I was pretty nervous to hit the field, but after I caught a couple balls I felt pretty good,” Paulson said. “After the fumbles, we needed to change our mindset, and we knew what we had to do to continue to succeed.”

Kaneland hosts Chicago’s Marshall High School for the two schools’ first-ever meeting on Friday, Sept. 5, at 7 p.m.. KHS hosted IC Catholic in the second game of 2013.