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Featured - page 16

Sluggers trounce Rochelle, vanquish DeKalb

in Baseball/Featured by

Photo: Mike Tattoni makes the turn at second base in recent action. File photo

More action for State champs includes two setbacks
by Mike Slodki
KANELAND—If only the Kaneland Knights could put up double-figure run totals in every contest.

While they enjoyed wins over conference rivals, the Knights could have used them in two losses this past week.

A week with split fortunes saw a 17-0 win over the Hubs on Thursday, followed by a trip to Woodstock, Ill., and a close 6-5 loss to Marian Central Catholic on Saturday. Northern Illinois Big XII action continued on with a 6-2 win in Barb-land on Monday and a 4-3, 12-inning marathon loss to DeKalb on Tuesday in Maple Park.

Kaneland now sits at 10-7 (4-1 NIB-12).

In the five-inning rout of the Hubs, Trevor Storck (5 IP, 1 H, 2 K) earned the win, while John Hopkins had a double and three RBI in the effort. Tyler Heinle joined the party with two doubles and three RBI. Kaneland’s 10-run second inning made it 11-0 after two innings.

Against the Hurricanes, Kaneland’s 3-1 lead went by the wayside as MCC scored three in the bottom of the fifth. KHS tied it in the sixth before the hosts’ two-run sixth sealed the result.

Joe Pollastrini took the loss in relief, while Tom Fox went 3-for-3 with a triple and two RBI.

In DeKalb, the Knights’ four-run second and two-run fifth buoyed the visitors.

Hopkins took the win with a complete-game, six-hitter. Quinn Buschbacher jacked a grand slam, and Heinle went 2-for-3 with a triple and walk.

On Tuesday, DeKalb scored three in the fourth, with Kaneland’s three-run sixth tying the game until the Barbs’ one run in the 12th.

The loss went to Bryan VanBogaert, who went 7.2 innings in relief, while Fox went 3-for-6 with two doubles.

The Knights finish the series with DeKalb in a road contest on Thursday, April 19, before hosting old rival Geneva on Friday, April 20.

Kaneland Community Fine Arts Festival Barn Quilts

in Featured/Kaneland by

Kaneland—A brother-sister duo will add a hands-on clinic to this year’s Sunday, April 22, Kaneland Community Fine Arts Festival at Kaneland High School.

Artist siblings Laura VanGemert and Steven Mockus will present this hands-on clinic at the festival, creating an eight-foot-by-eight-foot wooden quilt to be sold to interested barn owners for their barns.

In addition to the clinic, artists VanGemert and Mockus have created a quilt for auction to anyone. Their first quilt can be found just north of Main Street Road on Green Road. Barn owners who are interested in bidding for the barn quilt should contact Maria Dripps-Paulson at (630) 365-5100, ext. 180.

Sugar Grove business allows seniors, disabled to continue living at home

in Featured/Sugar Grove by

Photos: Home For Life provides walk-in showers (below) for safety and convenience. A resident now has a scooter ramp (right) thanks to the people at Home For Life, which is celebrating two years of home modifications for older adults, veterans, and persons with disabilities. Courtesy Photo

by Keith Beebe
SUGAR GROVE—Home is where people typically feel most safe and secure. Cindy Shaw, owner of Sugar Grove-based business Home for Life Advantage, Inc. believes people shouldn’t have to leave the comfort and familiarity of home when they get older.

“Through personal experience with my family, I found a major concern is that as we grow older we may have to leave our home, parting with the comfort or memories of our life,” Shaw said. “Most of us desire to stay in our home and live out our lives in the peaceful surroundings that we cherish and recognize. We are familiar with our neighbors and environment; we feel safe and secure there.”

Home for Life, Inc. was launched in early 2010, and operates on an “aging in place” philosophy in which people continue to live in their home as their lives and health change with age. Shaw said the company provides products, services and even home modifications to achieve this philosophy. Her clientele consists mainly of senior citizens and people who suffer from mobility and disability issues.

“At Home for Life, we spend time with each individual to listen to their concerns and needs. We also work alongside their doctors, occupational or physical therapists,” Shaw said. “We discuss the modifications that we can provide to help them to be able to stay at home independently. Modifications can be a simple grab bar, accessible bathroom, ramp, or stair lift, as well as full ‘Accessibility Makeover.’

Shaw’s husband, Rein Puttkammer, also works for the business. Rein and Cindy have been Sugar Grove residents since 1995, and have over 30 years of experience in the construction industry. It was during that time that Shaw discovered her passion for helping people to be able to stay in their “home for life.”

“We are CAPS certified, which means ‘Certified Aging in Place Specialist.’ The new term they use now in construction is ‘Universal Design,’ which means that anyone, no matter what mobility or disability they have, can come into your home (and exist comfortably),” Cindy said.

According to Cindy, she and Rein regularly attend classes to educate themselves on the newest products and information that are available. She personally volunteers at many different organizations, and has given talks to Parkinson and multiple sclerosis support groups. The couple also teaches a “Continuing Care through Home Modifications” class to occupational therapists, physical therapists and case managers. Those who take the class receive two continuing education credits.

It has been two years since Home for Life began operation, and Shaw said that during that time, she and Rein have met and had the privilege to help many clients make their everyday life easier to live.

“That was my mission in starting my company,” she said.

Heartburn for life

in Featured/Kaneland by

Photo: Acid Reflux will perform at “Laughing for Life” on
Saturday, April 14, at 10 p.m., and Sunday, April 15, at 2 p.m.,
at Meiley-Swallow Hall, 32 S. Ellsworth St., Naperville.

Kaneland grad’s comedy troupe—Acid Reflux—performs for Relay for Life
by Keith Beebe
KANELAND—To say that Bryan Renaud is familiar with the Kaneland community would be an understatement—he has resided in Elburn, Kaneville and Sugar Grove during his lifetime. The Kaneland School District was also where Renaud made the decision to follow his dreams and pursue a life in theatre and music.

“I went to Kaneland schools my whole life … There was a reason that my family refused to leave the district. The teachers and programs there are great, especially the arts programs,” said Renaud, a 2009 Kaneland High School graduate who currently resides in Sugar Grove. “I knew at a young age that I needed to be in theatre and music, and Kaneland was a good place to follow that dream. All of the schools offer numerous theatrical productions a year to be involved in.”

In 2006, Renaud co-founded the Acid Reflux comedy troupe with Will Burdin of Batavia. Since then, the troupe has averaged close to 10 performances a year at local theatres, community centers, gymnasiums and classrooms.

Two of Acid Reflux’s performances in 2012 will take place this weekend, when the comedy troupe performs at the second annual “Laughing for Life” event in Naperville. Proceeds from the event will go to Relay for Life.

The shows will also mark the second-straight year of collaboration between Renaud’s comedy troupe and The Company, North Central College’s theatre organization.

“We knew we were going to collaborate with The Company after the success we had in 2011 with the first ‘Laughing for Life.’ Last year, we raised $1,000, and this year we want to double that,” Renaud said.

According to Renaud, Acid Reflux is an all-around hilarious show that lampoons everything from “Twilight” to politics, musicals and more. He said the show’s material is similar in set-up to “Saturday Night Live.”

“We have characters that are the people you love, the people you are related to, and the people you try to avoid … most of our sketches are so rooted in reality, you can’t help but laugh,” Renaud said.

Renaud said the show’s material is what garnered the comedy troupe its spots in the Chicago Improv Festival in 2010, and the Chicago SketchFest this year. These events are two of the biggest comedy festivals in the world, and the troupe shared the stage with stars from Hollywood, The Second City, etc.

The current Acid Reflux show has been in the works since last December.

“We held auditions to add people to the troupe all the way back in September, but this is the first time that this full cast will be performing together. Everyone is really excited and it’s for such a great cause,” he said.

As a young thespian who began acting on Kaneland theatre stages, Renaud played the role of Lumiere in “Beauty and the Beast,” George Gibbs in “Our Town,” and directed his own one-act during his senior year of high school. Renaud was also involved in Kaneland choir, which he called “simply amazing.”

“It’s been a few years since I went (to Kaneland), and I’ve seen very few choral groups as good as Kaneland’s-high school, collegiate or otherwise,” he said.

Renaud’s time at Kaneland led him to study theatre performance at North Central College. The school’s deep connections with a few of the big-name theatres in Chicago allowed Renaud to secure multiple auditions at Chicago Shakespeare and Steppenwolf.

“I’ve had best friends work at both (theatres). Just the fact that students are getting seen by these amazing theatres is huge enough,” he said.

Acid Reflux will perform at “Laughing for Life” on Saturday, April 14, at 10 p.m., and Sunday, April 15, at 2 p.m., at Meiley-Swallow Hall, 32 S. Ellsworth St., Naperville. Admission to the event is free, but for every $5 a person donates, they will receive a raffle ticket. The raffle will feature over $250 in prizes each night

“We’ve got tons of local gift cards, as well as tickets to local professional shows, costume rentals at All Dressed Up Costumes and more,” Renaud said. “One lucky winner may even get a serenade. You never know what to expect at an Acid Reflux show.”

Girls Track sees exceptional totals at Holmes Meet

in Featured/Girls Track by

Photo: Ashley Castellanos (right) put in good work Saturday at the Jill Holmes Invite, including winning this 100 meter dash. Photo by John DiDonna

by Mike Slodki
KANELAND—It took barely any time for Lady Knights girls track to get acclimated to the outdoor competition.

With the Jill Holmes Invite on Saturday yielding success, and the dual action going the Lady Knights way on Tuesday against visiting Sycamore, Kaneland sits in a good spot.

On Saturday, Rockton’s Hononegah High School finished first with 98 points, while Kaneland was second at 92.5, and DeKalb third.

Ashley Castellanos took third place in the 200 meter dash on Saturday with a 27-second effort.

Lady Knight Abby Dodis ran a 12:17.40 effort in the 3200m run, with DeKalb standout Kelsey Schrader taking first at 11:42.10.

The Lady Knights’ 4x800m relay group of Amanda Lesak, Sydney Strang, Jennifer Howland and Jessica Kucera finished second with an effort of 10:10.35.

The Lady Knights did well in field events, as well, with Castellanos staking her claim in the long jump and triple jump by finishing second in both.

The junior hit the 15-10 mark in the long jump, and a 33-06 in the triple jump for a productive morning.

Elle Tattoni beat the field and took the reins in the shot put with a 32-11 throw, while fellow Lady Knights Nicole Ketza took first (97-10.5) and Ashley Cottier managed third in the discus (94-09.5).

Against the Lady Spartans, KHS used plenty of great showings for an 86-55 win.

Strang’s 11:54.6 was tops in the 3200m run.

“I’ve been working hard and it’s been going pretty well, “ Strang said. “I’ve been having fun and trying my best with it.”

Howland took the 800m run with a time of 2:32.3, Lesak won the 300m hurdles event with a time of 50.8 seconds, and Kaltrina Ismaili won the 200m run with a time of 28.9 seconds.

Additonal firsts were garnered by the 4x400m relay team (4:09.8), Castellanos in the triple jump (32-10), Tattoni in the shot put (31-06), Ketza in the discus (94-04), Gabby Aguirre in the high jump (five feet) and Sydney Luse in the pole vault (eight feet).

Up ahead for girls track: the Ottawa ABC Invite on Friday, April 13.

Knights baseball brings firepower vs. Dukes, Hubs

in Baseball/Featured by

Photo: Kaneland’s Quinn Buschbacher makes contact for a hit during their home game against Hononegah on April 5. Photo by Patti Wilk

KANELAND—Dixon’s baseball field is somewhat secluded, and surrounded by tall trees.

Not even that setting could protect them from Kaneland baseball’s offensive onslaught.

Saturday saw Kaneland travel to the former childhood home of President Ronald Reagan and contain the host Dukes by a final of 15-4 in a five-inning contest.

The Saturday win did wonders in getting the sour taste out of the Knights’ mouth after a 7-1 defeat at the hands of Rockton’s Hononegah High School on Thursday in Maple Park.

Kaneland also handed Rochelle two defeats: a 15-2, five-inning special on Monday and a 1-0 win in Ogle County on Tuesday.

Against Dixon, Kaneland (8-5, 2-0 NIB-12) was paced by two runs in the top of the first, then six in the second and a seven-spot in the third.

Trevor Storck balanced things on the mound with three strikeouts and seven hits scattered, while allowing three earned runs.

Tyler Heinle went 3-for-3 with a triple and two RBI, and Clay Denlinger added a 2-for-4 day with an RBI.

Against the visiting Indians, the Knights could only manage a run in the first, with John Hopkins taking the loss on the mound, despite allowing no earned runs over 5.2 innings.

Ray Barry had a double and drew two walks for the Knights.

Against the Hubs on Monday, Kaneland’s nine-run first set the tone in windy conditions.

Drew Peters improved to 2-2 and fanned eight.

It was still a challenge for the southpaw to mow down the rival lineup, even with a convincing lead.

“The curveball worked surprisingly (well) in this wind,” Peters said “The fastball came in pretty hard and I was really pleased.”

KHS coach Brian Aversa thought Peters did his duty on the mound, pitching smart with the lead.

“You know, it’s not a close game anymore,” Aversa said. “We’ve got the lead, we can be more aggressive and go after guys. If they hit it, they hit it, and if not, we have to make plays behind him.”

On Tuesday, the lone run was executed by Tyler Heinle with a suicide squeeze in the top of the fifth.

Hopkins went the distance, allowing a two-out double in the bottom of the seventh for the lone blemish.

Kaneland battles Rochelle in a rematch of the 2012 Rochelle Sectional title game won by Kaneland last June, on Thursday, April 12.

Boys track feels outdoorsy at E. Moline

in Boys Track/Featured by

Photo: Alex Snyder throws the discus a huge 112 feet, 11 inches during Kaneland’s home meet against Sycamore on April 10. Photo by John DiDonna

Knights also earn dual win vs. Spartans
by Mike Slodki
KANELAND—How do you deal with boys track giants from the Quad Cities area along with other very talented outfits?

You show your talent is as big and capable as theirs.

Kaneland boys track put up third-place numbers at the annual East Moline United Kiwanis Invitational at the Soule Bowl in East Moline, Ill., on Saturday with 233.5 points.

Rock Island won the meet crown with 260 points, while the hosts put up 250 points of their own.

Pleasant Valley of Iowa was in fourth with 196 points, and Galesburg was fifth at 195.

Two fellow Northern Illinois Big XII schools competed on Saturday, with Sterling finishing seventh in the 12-team meet (152 points), and Geneseo scoring 141.5 points for eighth.

With the events placed in A, B and C flights, Kaneland found plenty of competitors of their own with top finishes.

Knights standout Kyle Carter was the premiere runner in the 800 meter run “A”, thanks to a two minute, 2.96 effort, .72 seconds better than Beau Salsman of Galesburg.

Teammate Dylan Nauert’s third place in the 300m hurdles “A’ group fit well in the team’s success, thanks to a 41.40-second finish.

Nauert was at it again as part of the 4x100m relay team along with Brandon Bishop, Brandon Cottier and Sean Carter, as the foursome finished second with a time of 43.84.

In the 4x400m relay “A” flight, Bishop, Nathan Kucera, Kyle Carter and Nauert finished second with a 3:30.48 effort.

Kaneland also found encouraging developments in the field events, with JR Vest taking third in the pole vault with a height of 12 feet even.

Nate Dyer continued his positive trajectory from last year by throwing 45-10 in the shot put. Dyer also took second in the discus throw for coach Eric Baron’s crew, heaving a 144-10 disc.

Bishop found himself in the thick of things again by finishing third in the 100m dash “B” with a time of 11.9.

Kaneland’s Miki Marin emerged first in the 800m run “B” thanks to a 2:05.11, 1.25 seconds faster than Pleasant Valley’s Joe Schuler.

Eric Dillion finished third in the high jump “B” action with a leap of 5-10.

The Knights’ 4x400m relay group finished second in the “B” category with a time of 3:45.01.

In the pole vault “B” event, Knight Dylan Kuipers finished second with a height of 11 feet.

Sean Carter finished a scant .17 seconds behind Rock Island’s Brandon Richardson at 11.82.

Kucera took first in the 400m dash “C” with a time of 52.46, while teammate Clayton Brundige was king of the 800m run “C’ at 2:07.97.

KHS representative Brock Robertson finished second with a time of 43.74 seconds in the 300m hurdles “C”.

Another pole vaulter doing well for KHS was Dan Evers, who finished first in the “C” group with a vault of 10-06.

Kaneland’s Ben Barnes held his own in the “C” long jump grouping by finishing second with a distance of 18-09.5.

In a Tuesday meet against Sycamore, Kaneland won 96-50, thanks to first places from personnel like Nauert in the 300m hurdles (41.3) and Dyer in the shot put (45-11) and discus (140-05).

Conor Johnson also nabbed first in the 3200m run at 10:04.6. Dylan Pennington took first in the 200m dash with an effort of 24.9.

Vest excelled in the pole vault with an 11-foot launch.

Saturday, April 14, brings the latest test for boys track in the form of the Ottawa Invitational.

Kaneland Fine Arts Festival set for April 22

in Featured/Kaneland by

Photo: The 13th Annual Kaneland Community Fine Arts Festival will be held Sunday, April 22, from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. at the Kaneland High School. Many crafters and performers will be on hand throughout the day. File Photo

KANELAND—The Kaneland Community Fine Arts Festival will be held Sunday, April 22, from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. on the campus of Kaneland High School. The festival, presented for no admission fee, will showcase over 500 pieces of student artwork from all of the grade levels of the Kaneland School District.

Besides viewing the artwork of the Kaneland Students, guests can interact with over 15 professional visual artists in the arts pavilion at the high school. Guests will also be able to experience the professional performing artists in the Kaneland auditorium. In-depth information on the artists can be found in the Kaneland Virtual Backpack, and on the festival website, www.kanelandartsfestival.org, prior to the event.

In addition to the artists, guests will be able to participate in hands-on workshops. The Kaneland High School Art Club will make balloon animals and paint faces. Patrons can create their own glass pieces and have their caricature drawn.

New this year is the Barn Quilt Workshop, led by Laura VanGemert and Steven Mockus. Patrons will be able to paint a piece of wood that will become an 8-foot square that will be sold to a barn owner in the Kaneland School District to be displayed on the barn owner’s barn. In addition to the barn quilt being made at the festival, Mrs. VanGemert and Mr. Mockus donated a finished quilt to the art auction. Barn owners will have two opportunities to get one of these two unique barn quilts for their buildings. Inquiries about the barn quilts can be directed to Maria Dripps-Paulson at maria.drippspaulson@kaneland.org or (630) 365-5100, ext. 180.

This year’s performing arts workshop will be presented by the Mime Company. The Mime Company will perform at the festival and provide a workshop immediately following the performance. Patrons interested in this workshop should plan on attending the performance prior to the workshop. Pre-registration is required for the workshop, and interested patrons (all ages encouraged) should contact Dripps-Paulson.

There are two exciting opportunities to help out the festival this year. If you plan on attending the festival, why not volunteer to help out on festival day? The festival welcomes volunteers in many shapes and sizes. Sign up as an individual or bring your whole family. If you are a part of the Girl Scouts or Boy Scouts and you would like to lend a hand, the festival committee would love to have you help out at this event.

More than 3,000 people attend the festival yearly, and over 100 volunteers are needed to continue the festival’s wonderful tradition. The Fine Arts Festival needs volunteers to usher, be the caricature artist’s assistant, collect donations for Stock the Shop, and assist with set-up and tear down. A volunteer form can be found on the festival website.

Check out the website for the Stock the Shop information, including a list of equipment needed to stock the scene shop for the continuing season. Each year, the scene shop goes through gallons of paint, pounds of nails and yards of lumber to create the scenery and other equipment for the Kaneland Auditorium. Here’s how it works:

1. Check out our Stock the Shop registry and shop for an item on the list (new items only).

2. Bring the item to the scene shop on the day of the festival between the hours of 8 a.m. and 5 p.m.

3. Receive a tax donation letter (in the mail) and a voucher for one free ticket to any Kaneland Community Fine Arts Festival event.

If you will be bringing in a large item, call prior to April 20 so that a specific time for delivery can be set up. Volunteers will be at the scene shop to help all donors. If you have questions, contact Chad Carlson at chad.carlson@kaneland.org.

This year, the festival is partnering with the Kaneland Foundation for its “Cooking for Kids” fundraiser, which will be held Saturday, April 21, from 6:30 to 9 p.m. Patrons at this event will be able to sample the food created by Kaneland officials, such Kaneland Superintendent Jeff Schuler, as well as the Kaneland town and village mayors and presidents.

Patrons will vote for their favorite chef in a number of categories. The Kaneland Madrigals will provide the entertainment for the evening and patrons will be able to get a special preview of the student artwork on display for the festival. There will also be a silent auction.

All proceeds for this event will benefit Kaneland students. Advance tickets are $25 for adults and $10 for children/students. Tickets purchased at the door will be $30 for adults and $15 for children/students. Tickets are on sale on the Kaneland website, www.kaneland.org.

Mark your calendars for this event, and don’t forget to order your festival T-shirt or tote (See website). Inquiries about the festival can be directed to Dripps-Paulson.

Elburn resident named 2012 Board of Trustees Professors

in Elburn/Featured/Regional by

DEKALB—Northern Illinois University recently named Elburn resident and geologist Reed Scherer as one of its three 2012 Board of Trustees Professors—an honor that recognizes international prominence in research as well as excellence in all facets of teaching.

The trio works in fields that seem far removed from each other, with historian Heidi Fehrenbach illuminating post-World War II European history, chemist Chhiu-Tsu “C.T.” Lin mixing up the chemistry for new inventions, and Scherer conducting climate research in the most remote region of the planet. These three bring uncommon creativity to their work that ignites a passion for knowledge among their students.

“The latest round of Board of Trustees Professorships confirm what colleagues and students have known all along—that Heide Fehrenbach, C.T. Lin and Reed Scherer are among the very best at what they do, not only at this university but anywhere,” NIU President John Peters said. “We’re indebted to all of them for their scholarship, tremendous work with students and service to our community.”

Established in 2007, the Board of Trustees Professorships honor faculty members who have consistently demonstrated excellence in teaching, academic leadership, scholarship or artistry, and service and outreach. Special emphasis is placed on recognizing those who have earned widespread acclaim for their work while continuing to engage students in their professional activities.

Each BOT Professorship is accompanied by a $10,000 stipend, renewable annually during a five-year term. The BOT Professorship awards will be presented during the annual Faculty Awards Ceremony and Reception from 3 to 5 p.m. Thursday, April 19, in the Altgeld Auditorium.

Here’s a closer look at the local 2012 BOT Professor.

Rock star
In contemporary and geologic terms, Reed Scherer simply rocks.

The NIU geology professor—who directs the new Institute for the Study of the Environment, Sustainability and Energy (ESE Institute)— excels at just about everything: inspirational teacher, world-renowned polar scientist, institutional innovator.

“Professor Scherer does not just teach students about science,” said Joseph Peterson, who earned his Ph.D. from NIU in 2010 and is now a geology professor at the University of Wisconsin Oshkosh. “He teaches students how to be scientists.”

Scherer has long embraced the engaged-learning approach in all its variations, whether he is presenting a classroom comparison between the evolution of automobiles and organisms, working alongside students on dinosaur digs in the American West, or training the next generation of scientists while on Antarctic expeditions.

“One cannot fully understand geological concepts until you’ve spent time both in the lab and out in the field puzzling over an outcrop, whether in Illinois, Montana or Antarctica,” Scherer said.

Scherer’s students—undergrads and graduate students alike—have published research in prestigious scientific journals and made presentations at conferences on five continents.

Under Scherer’s direction, current Ph.D. student Jon Warnock won two separate grants, totaling more than $300,000, from the National Science Foundation to study Antarctic fossil records. Scherer also helped Warnock and Matthew Konfirst, who earned his Ph.D. last year, land opportunities to learn from world-renowned experts at prestigious summer courses and workshops in Italy, Australia and Poland. Both students chose to stay at NIU to work on their doctoral degrees because of the strength of Scherer’s research program.

“Reed encouraged me to broaden my horizons,” said Konfirst, now a postdoctoral research scientist at Ohio State University’s Byrd Polar Research Center. “He left an indelible imprint on my intellectual development.”

Scherer himself earned his Ph.D. in paleontology at Ohio State and worked at a Swedish university before being recruited to NIU in 2000. He teaches a wide range of courses to undergraduate and graduate students.

Outside the university, Scherer’s research takes him to the planet’s Polar Regions, where he is working to decipher the geologic history and ongoing changes in the ice sheets by studying fossils known as diatoms. These microscopic single-celled algae live in shallow seawater and are deposited on the ocean floor, leaving behind beautifully ornate glass-like shells that tell a detailed tale of climate change over time. Geologists need to understand the past to predict the future.

In the 1990s, Scherer was a key member of a research team that confirmed the West Antarctic Ice Sheet (WAIS) has been unstable in the geologic past and even collapsed, raising sea levels by up to 18 feet. He and NIU colleague Ross Powell are continuing their investigations in Antarctica, where they plan to use a 28-foot-long, 2,200-pound robotic submarine to explore melting near the WAIS base.

Despite numerous international research commitments, Scherer also is a leader on campus. In recent years, he served as interim associate dean for research and graduate affairs in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences. He also was a leading proponent of the Strategic Planning initiative that resulted in the popular new environmental studies major and minor, which he oversees in his role as ESE Institute director.

“Reed epitomizes the combination of internationally recognized scholarship, excellence in teaching, engagement of students and leadership service that the Board of Trustees Professorship celebrates,” said Colin Booth, geology chair. “The geology department, the college and the university are fortunate indeed to have him.”

Keep the money in town

in Featured/Maple Park by

Photo: Last Chance Auto Sales is a new business at 807 S. County Line Road in Maple Park. They had their official grand opening on March 31. Many well wishers stopped by to see the business and have refreshments. The people who run Last Chance Auto are Theresa Miller (co-owner), Earl Thorne (owner) and Lisa Johnson (assistant). Photo by John DiDonna

Local resident opens used car business in Maple Park
by David Maas
MAPLE PARK—After a grand opening Saturday, Last Chance Auto Sales, a used car business located in Maple Park, officially opened its doors for business on Monday.

“This is something I’ve always wanted to do,” said Earl Thorne, owner of Last Chance Auto. “I have another business, but this is something less physical I can do in the coming years.”

Thorn, who has lived in Maple Park for 20 years, realizes how important it is to open a business in the village.

“Maple Park is a small town; I wanted to keep the money here,” Thorne said. “Also, with it being so close to home, if anyone needs to make an appointment, I’m 5 minutes away.”

Last Chance Auto will operate Monday through Friday, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., and also by appointment.

“For now, we’ll be working on building our inventory,” Thorne said. “But at the same time, we can try to locate any specific cars customers might want.”

Thorne will look for whatever make or model the customer needs, as long as he knows what to look for.

“A customer can tell us what they need, what their budget is, and we’ll try to find it,” Thorne said.

Before opening, Last Chance Auto held a grand opening event to let the community know they were there.

“We’ve had a pretty good turnout,” Thorne said. “A lot of locals and friends stopped by to show us support.”

Last Chance Auto Sales is located at 807 S. County Line Road, Maple Park, next to Casey’s General Store.

“Come in and see us,” Thorne said. “We’re fair, we’re reasonable, we’re honest, and we’ll work with anyone we can to help them find a car.”

Egg hunts a hit

in Elburn/Featured/Maple Park by

Ryleigh Lile, 4 and Emma Jo Mannia, 5, have breakfast with the Easter Bunny before the Elburn Lions Egg
Hunt on Saturday. Photo by Mary Herra

(Below) Lily Wennemar, 2, put her basket on her head for safe keeping before the start of the annual Maple Park LibraryEgg Hunt on March 31 at the Community Center. Photo by John DiDonna

Former Elburn man pleads guilty to beating toddler

in Elburn/Featured/Regional by

KANE COUNTY—A former Elburn man has pleaded guilty to severely beating a toddler in a St. Charles hotel room while high on heroin in October 2010.

James C. Cooper, formerly of the 700 block of North First Street, Elburn, and most recently of the 1500 block of East Main Street, St. Charles, recently agreed with the Kane County State’s Attorney to a sentence of 15 years in the Illinois Department of Corrections in exchange for a guilty plea to one count of aggravated battery to a child, a Class X felony.

Circuit Judge Timothy Q. Sheldon accepted the plea.

The morning of Oct. 27, 2010, in a hotel room in the 1500 block of East Main Street, St. Charles, Cooper slammed the victim face-first into the bed. The victim immediately was unresponsive, not breathing and bleeding from her mouth.

After 911 was called, Cooper fled the scene before emergency responders arrived. He was taken into custody three days later in Batavia.

Cooper acknowledged this week in court today that he was under the influence of heroin at the time of the incident.

According to Illinois law, Cooper must serve at least 85 percent of the prison term. He was given credit for at least 519 days served in the Kane County jail, where he had been held since his arrest.

In January 2011, the victim’s mother, co-defendant Cathleen A. Koch, 30, last known address of the 1500 block of East Main Street, St. Charles, was indicted on one count of aggravated battery to a child, a Class X felony, six counts of obstructing justice, each a Class 4 felony, and six counts of endangering the life or health of a child, each a Class A misdemeanor.

The charges against Koch are based on an allegation that she is legally responsible for the abusive acts of Cooper, her paramour.

Illinois Appellate courts have held that a person aids another person in the commission of an offense where she has an affirmative duty to act to protect her child, and chooses not to act.

Koch remains free on $10,000 bond. Her trial has been set to begin at 9 a.m. July 16, in Courtroom 319 in front of Judge Sheldon. If convicted, Koch would face a sentence of between six and 30 years in prison.

“Our office remains committed to seeking justice for the most defenseless and vulnerable in our society,” Kane County State’s Attorney Joe McMahon said. “Certainly, each of us feels a tug at the heart when we learn of a defenseless child being beaten up by someone she should be able to trust will protect her.

“We hope that this case serves as a warning of what can happen to a person who becomes involved with illicit narcotics and violently acts out toward those around him. This defendant acknowledged today in court that he had used heroin many times in this victim’s presence. He is headed to prison, but a child suffered much greater consequences as a result of his selfish and criminal conduct.

“Thanks to the St. Charles Police Department for its thorough investigation of this case, and to Kane County Assistant State’s Attorney Joseph Cullen and Debra Bree, who prosecuted this case.”

The charges against Koch are not proof of guilt. Koch is presumed innocent and is entitled to a fair trial during which it is the state’s burden to prove guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.

Good turn-out expected for library’s 8th annual Dewey Dash

in Elburn/Featured by

Town & Country Public Library 8th Annual Dewey Dash
Sunday, April 15,
7:30-8:30 a.m. registriation
at the library
8:30 a.m. 1 mile walk/run
9 a.m. 5K run
Registration forms available at elburn.lib.us and at the library
Registration:
$22 for adults before April 8,
$25 April 8 and after.
$12 for children before April 8,
$15 April 8 and after.

by Susan O’Neill
Elburn—This year marks the eighth annual Dewey Dash 5K/1mile Walk/Run, sponsored by the Town & Country Public Library in Elburn. This year’s race, titled “Full Throttle Thurber,” will be held in honor of American author, cartoonist and humorist James Thurber, who will be a “ghost runner” in the race.

Thurber, who wrote “The Secret Life of Walter Mitty,” was the creator of numerous New Yorker magazine cover cartoons, short stories, modern commentary, children’s fantasy and letters.

The race will be held on Sunday, April 15, with registration from 7:30 to 8:30 a.m. at the library. The 1-mile walk/run begins at 8:30 a.m. and the 5K run begins at 9 a.m.

According to Town & Country Library Director and Dewey Dash coordinator Mary Lynn Alms, the race typically brings out between 250 and 300 participants, with last year at 270. Most are local, a few are from out-of-state, and some people come out from Chicago for the race.

“It’s a pretty good turn out,” Alms said.

The 5-K race route is a USA Track and Field-certified 5-K course, measured and laid out by one of USATF’s officials. The race is professionally timed by Race-Time, and the results are posted on its website, www.racetime.info.

Last year, the winner was 18-year-old Geneva resident Ben Kanute, with a time of 17:39. Maple Park residents, 31-year-old Scott Peterson and 18-year-old Grant Alef, were in the top five finishers, with Peterson’s time at 19:23 and Alef’s at 19:28.

The top runners usually come in at 19-20 minutes, Alms said. The walkers come in an hour or so later.

Free snacks, awards and raffle prizes are handed out after the race, with local area businesses donating the food.

This year’s proceeds will go toward the purchase of three new computers for use at the circulation desk checkout stations.

Registration forms are available at elburn.lib.il.us and at the library.

KHS softball on tear after Tenn. trip

in Featured/Softball by

Photo: Shortstop Allyson O’Herron catches up to the runner trying to score and saves a run in the fourth inning of Kaneland’s 1-0 home win over Sandwich on Monday. Photo by John DiDonna

Stellar pitching keys additional wins over Sandwich, Morris
by Mike Slodki
KANELAND—If you thought the method for getting a softball season out of an early funk was going to the state of Tennessee, then you’re stealing the Lady Knights softball team’s way of doing things.

With a number of handy victories that culminated in a 6-1 trip to the Volunteer State, coupled with a slim and tense victory over the visiting Sandwich Indians on Monday afternoon and a convincing decision over invading Morris on Tuesday, the Lady Knights find themselves at 10-4 (1-0 Northern Illinois Big XII) in 2012.

The fortunate return to the win column as of late reverses a trend that saw the varsity crew on the wrong end 21 of 28 times following last season’s early 8-1 start.

In a 14-0, six-inning win on March 28 on the grounds of Macon County High School, Kaneland saw a solid pitching day from Delani Vest, Alexis Villarreal and Ellissa Eckert. Lexi Roach (three runs), Paige Kuefler (five RBI) and Allie Miller (three runs) all went 3-for-5.

In the Cookeville, Tenn. tournament, Kaneland walloped Clay County in a 16-0 shortened affair. Vest and Villarreal surrendered just two hits total, while Roach had a 2-for-3 day at the plate with three runs scored. Vest also went 2-for-3 with three runs scored to help herself at the plate.

Lewis County then got the best of the Lady Knights in a 9-4 outing, helped by five runs in the first and second innings.

In another tournament battle, Kaneland defeated Fayatte with two runs in the bottom of the fourth for a 4-3 win. Vest earned the win with seven K’s and a two-for-three day at the plate.

Next, the Lady Knights used four runs in the second and six runs in the third to propel themselves to a 12-1 win. With Vest getting the win in the circle, Kuefler helped KHS with two home runs and six driven in. Miller went 3-for-3 with two runs scored and two RBI.

The two final games on Saturday both went Kaneland’s way against Franklin County of Tenn., a 10-0 shutout and a 12-2 win over Franklin Co. of Ky. Vest, besides earning the win in both games, also went 6-for-6 at the plate, while Kuefler drove in four RBI.

In the clutch, 1-0 win over Sandwich, the hits were hard to come by for both teams, but the defense and pitching came through.

In the top of the third, Sandwich was caught between third and home and foiled by Kuefler and Allyson O’Herron on the way to the plate. Meanwhile, Villarreal had a stellar day in the pitcher’s circle, fanning 13, including the final batter on a 3-2 pitch with the go-ahead run at first in the top of the seventh.

“Once people starting getting on base, I just had to buckle down,” Villarreal said. “I hoped the defense could pick it up a little bit and I could get my strikeout.”

Roach’s groundball and throw was mishandled in the infield, allowing Kuefler to come home with the lone run from third.

Coach Brian Willis was happy with the effort in the field on a day where the hits came at a premium.

“We’re going to have days like this, where the pitching and defense needs to pick you up. Alexis pitched well, and she kept us in the game the entire time,” Willis said.

In the 5-0 handling of the Lady Redskins, Kaneland scored two in the first, two in the third and one in the fifth.

Vest allowed just three hits and fanned seven. Lanie Callaghan made her way from the injury list with a 3-for-3 day with two doubles.

Ahead for the softball squad is a matchup in DeKalb on Thursday, April 5, followed by a battle at West Aurora High School on Monday, April 9, and a trip to Sycamore to face the squad that eliminated the Knights last year from playoff competition on Tuesday, April 10.

Sheriff’s Office demonstrates drug dog searches for KHS students

in Featured/Kreir News Bureau by

Photo: Tryont, the K-9 that visited Kaneland High School, has undergone extensive training and can sometimes detect the smell of drugs even a few days after they have been removed from a locker or other location. Photo by Samantha Schrepferman

by Courtney Diddell
Kaneland Krier Reporter

KANELAND—A K-9 unit from the Kane County Sheriff’s Office demonstrated how drug searches are conducted for contemporary health classes at Kaneland High School on March 7.

Health teacher Cindy Miller has been bringing in Kane County police officers to present to her class for eight years.

“I’m trying to teach the kids about the training with the dog, how they work and what they are supposed to do,” Miller said. “It’s an interesting demo.”

Deputy Nicholas Wolf has been a K-9 officer for 10 years and has trained and worked with three dogs throughout his working experience. He describes them as “scent-discriminating animals.”

“They are just another tool for us, but I cried like a baby when my first two dogs passed away,” Wolf said.

Senior Carolina Tovar, who attended the presentation, said she thought it was interesting but wouldn’t change how some Kaneland students feel about bringing drugs to school.

“People who bring drugs to school think they’re invincible,” Tovar said.

Wolf’s current K-9, Tryont, is certified in narcotics detection, tracking, building searches, evidence recovery, suspect apprehension and handler protection. They are also assigned to the Kane County SWAT team.

The most common thing the dogs search for in a school are illegal drugs and people who have either been doing, selling or buying drugs. Although drugs are not frequently found at Kaneland High School, Sheriff’s Resource Officer Keith Gardner said when he does find prescription medication and marijuana, they are most commonly found in bathrooms and lockers.

“It was interesting to see how easily dogs were able to find drugs anywhere, no matter how hidden they were,” Tovar said.

Police officials can perform searches anytime even at the slightest suspicion, Gardner said.

“School property is subject to search. Usually we have reasonable suspicion or anonymous tips,” he said.

Miller thinks that students should know more about these searches and the consequence of getting caught.

“I think kids need to understand that we can have the dogs do searches whenever we want,” she said.

When Wolf and Tryont reach their suspect, they must allow the suspect to surrender according to law, but as soon as they don’t, the dog is released to attack.

“We give people the chance to surrender legally, but once they don’t, they’ve chosen their own path,” Wolf said.

Tovar said she couldn’t see herself working with a K-9 dog due to their aggression.

“They’re too scary and aggressive,” he said.

It would take four hours to search a building with just the men, but with dogs it only takes half that time at the most, Wolf said.

“Dogs have one million more sense cells then humans, and that’s why we use them,” he said.

“The scent lasts longer to dogs then it does to us, and they can smell it from farther away,” Gardner said.

Tovar thinks Miller should continue this presentation in Contemporary Health.

“It was really informative and cool to see how excited the police officer was,” Tovar said.

Eagle Scouts in abundance in Big Rock Troop 19

in Featured/Regional by

Photo: Sam Kimpan is an Eagle Scout from the Boy Scout Troop 19 in Big Rock and surrounding communities. His Eagle Scout project was to clear 1/4 mile of the Little Rock Creek, which runs through Hinckley. After the debris was cleared, the creek went down six inches, and it has fixed the flooding problem for the community it runs through. Courtesy Photo

by Susan O’Neill
Big Rock—Sam Kimpan, 18-year-old Big Rock Boy Scout Troop 19 member, is the most recent in his Troop to earn the rank of Eagle Scout. According to Denise Mathewson, the troop’s committee chair, Kimpan is one of three boys who will become an Eagle Scout this year, making the Troop on target for 20 boys who have earned this rank within the past 16 years.

Becoming an Eagle Scout is a rigorous endeavor. It requires progressing through the six Boy Scout ranks, earning 21 merit badges, planning, developing and leading a service project, six months in a Troop leadership position, and successfully completing the Eagle Scout Board of Review.

Because of the rigor involved, the average number of Boy Scouts who go on to earn the Eagle Scout rank is only four out of 100 Scouts. The percentage of Troop 19’s Scouts who reach that rank for just this year is about 15 percent, nearly four times the average.

“I think it has a lot to do with being a smaller, close-knit town, with a lot of parents involved,” said current Scout Leader Bill Yoder.

Mathewson said that parents within the community feel strongly about their boys’ involvement in Scouting, and there is a lot of parental devotion to organizing, planning and assisting the boys in achieving their accomplishments. Her husband Eric, an Eagle Scout himself, has coordinated the troop’s merit badge process. Sam’s father, Mike Kimpan, was Scout Master for three years until Yoder took over a year ago. Prior to becoming the Scout Master, Yoder was an assistant leader since his son, David, now 18, was in first grade.

“The Scout leaders are just such good role models,” said Donna Kimpan, Sam’s mom. “They all have jobs, but every Monday night, there they are. These guys really care about the kids.”

“And the boys have to make that commitment, too,” Yoder added.

Yoder said that when he became a leader with the Scouts, there were seven in his den, including his son, David. Of the seven, two dropped out, and three of the remaining five will become Eagle Scouts.

Yoder emphasized that Big Rock and the surrounding communities and its businesses have supported the Troop over the years, allowing the boys to do many fun things.

The Big Rock Lions Club has been the sponsor of the Troop since it began in 1989. Others contribute generously, as well, such as O. M. Fasel Greenhouse, which helps with the Troop’s spring plant sale and the wreath and evergreen sale in November. The proceeds from these sales help the Scouts earn money for camping equipment.

Yoder said the Troop tries to camp out at least once a month. In the colder months, they stay in cabins, and the rest of the year they’re in tents.

Nathan Carr, a 33-year-old former Big Rock resident, was in the first group of Cub Scouts that progressed to Boy Scout Troop 19.

“It was great as a kid,” he said. “We would go on adventures.”

Carr recalls hiking at Starved Rock State Park every year during a week-long camping trip, working on merit badges and learning things such as first aid, fire-starting, knot-tying and setting up camp.

Carr stayed in the Scouts until he was 20, two years after earning his Eagle Scout rank, when he became an assistant Scout Master with the Troop.

His Eagle Scout project created Big Rock’s annual Easter Egg Hunt, which will celebrate its 17th year this spring. The hunt draws between 200 and 300 egg-seekers, who hunt for the 2,000 to 3,000 hidden eggs. Carr still comes back for the event some years, and now he brings his girlfriend’s daughter to the event.

“It’s neat to see the next generation participating,” he said.

Kimpan said that for him, Scouting started out as just a fun activity. Then, he began to learn more and more skills, and during high school, began taking on leadership roles, planning outings and helping other boys obtain their merit badges.

The boys learn how to give first aid and CPR, how to give a speech in front of a group, about citizenship from local to global, personal fitness, as well as personal management and how to plan and handle money.

“They try to prepare you for life,” Kimpan said.

Kimpan’s project to earn his Eagle Scout rank involved clearing debris at Little Rock Creek, which had led to flooding of residents’ basements in the area.

“A couple of trees had fallen and created a log jam,” he said. “The water was a foot higher than it should have been.”

Kimpan said he had 15 to 20 Scout and community volunteers and two to three pieces of equipment during two weekends. They removed tires, metal, logs, a hot water heater, a swing set, a BBQ grill, as well as the front suspension of a car.

The idea behind the projects is to take it from start to finish, Yoder said. The boy writes up a proposal to the recipient, puts together a plan for how he will accomplish it, obtains the funding and creates a budget, recruits volunteers, leads the project, tracks the dollars received and spent, and obtains the recipient’s approval that the job was done to their satisfaction. The last step is a review in front of the Eagle Scout Board of Review.

“I believe everybody could benefit from Scouting,” Carr said. “The experiences are well worth the time invested. There’s nothing else like it for boys growing up.”


This is the creek area before the cleanup. Courtesy Photo


Thanks to Sam’s efforts, here is the area after the cleanup. Courtesy Photo

Troop 19 Eagle Scouts
Scout Name Eagle Scout
Board of Review Date

Nathaniel Carr 2/26/1997
Alexander Carr 11/13/2000
Michael Phillips 11/13/2000
Paul Drawz 4/30/2001
Jason Kazmierczak 9/3/2002
Matthew Kline 10/27/2003
Alex Kline-Wedeen 9/21/2005
Christopher Stola 5/8/2006
Michael Kline 7/11/2006
Ryan Mathewson 8/15/2006
Greg Landgren 11/14/2007
Jacob Franzen 11/27/2007
Evan Kline-Wedeen 12/11/2007
Peter Groch 3/31/2009
German Arroyo 11/17/2010
George Thompson 12/21/2011
David Yoder 2/3/2012
Samuel Kimpan 2/28/2012

Family cooking comes to Prairie Valley

in Elburn/Featured by

Photo: Felipe Lopez cooks authentic Mexican food at Chico’s Tacos. He and his wife, Juanita, have moved their location to 7 Valley Drive in Elburn. Photo by John DiDonna

by David Maas
ELBURN—After a year and a half located at the corner of Route 47 and Main Street Road, next to the Blackberry Inn, Chico’s Tacos moved into the Prairie Valley Center in Elburn out of necessity.

“We needed a new location,” said Tico Lopez, who owns and operates the business with his family. “We were renting and the owner sold the building, so we moved here.”

While the new location just recently opened on March 7, the owners are already happy with the move.

“Business is great,” Lopez said. “I’m not sure we could’ve asked for a better location.”

As with their previous location, Chico’s Tacos specializes in fresh, authentic Mexican food, desserts and drinks for carry-out or delivery.

“Everything here is made fresh, from family recipes,” Lopez said, “They are from my mother’s great-grandmother, from around the 1920s.”

Along with the previous full menu, Chico’s Tacos has also added a few new items.

“We’ve added enchiladas, gorditas and churros, among other things,” Lopez said.

Chico’s Tacos is now located on Valley Drive, next to Munchie P’s, in the Prairie Valley Center.

“It’s great to be in this new location,” Lopez said. “It’s funny how having to move locations has worked so well for us.”

Raffling relief for Southern Illinois tornado victims

in Featured/Kaneville/Regional by

Photo: A Catholic church located in Ridgway, Ill., show the damage caused by a tornado that struck Southern Illinois on Feb. 29. Courtesy Photo

Kaneville store plans raffle for Southern Illinois tornado victims
by Keith Beebe
KANEVILLE—Pat Hill’s fundraising effort for families affected by the tornado that ripped through Southern Illinois on Feb. 29 began with a collection jar on the checkout counter of her business, Hill’s Country Store in Kaneville.

The Hill family’s tornado relief effort has since grown to a full-scale raffle fundraiser, thanks to Pat’s 21-year-old daughter, Alexa.

“The donation jar was a great idea, but I felt like we should do something more and get more money, so I thought we’d have some raffles and a bake sale,” Alexa said.

The Hill family first learned of the Southern Illinois tornado relief effort from Sycamore resident Lee Newtson in early March. Newtson told Pat he planned to travel to the disaster area and meet with families whose homes were destroyed by the tornado.

The disaster also claimed the lives of seven people in Southern Illinois.

“Lee came into the store on a Monday and said he was heading down to Harrisburg that Saturday. I said, ‘Jeez, what do you need?’ and he said he was trying to collect money and gift cards to take down there where the help is needed,” Pat said. “I told him I could put out a jar and see what I get by Saturday. I collected some personal hygiene items from people and also raised about $172 before (Lee) left (for Southern Illinois).”

Newtson first learned about disaster recovery at Conley Funeral Home in 1960. He trained on Chuck Conley’s ambulance service and assisted on removals, visitations and funerals. Newtson participated in disaster recovery in New York City following the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, as well as the relief effort in Joplin, Mo., following a deadly tornado that struck the area in May 2011.

“I have been able to gain support with donations from my Grace Fellowship Church of Maple Park (and) Pastor Jim Harper,” Newtson said. “Also, the Men’s Prayer Group on Saturdays, 1960 high school class mates, doctors, dentist, friends, Pat at the Purple Store (Hill’s Country Store) and acquaintances. They have all given me money, gift cards and goods to take along on the tornado recovery missions.”

Newtson worked primarily with two families—the Wynn family of Ridgway, Ill., and the Lane family of Harrisburg—during his time in Southern Illinois. He took them out to lunch, met their children and surveyed the damage done to their respective homes. The Lanes have no insurance and currently live in the basement of their tornado-ravaged home, while the Wynns are living in a makeshift camper in their friend’s driveway.

The raffle put together by Pat and Alexa Hill will go toward the two families.

“Both of those families are having a hard time, and I thought this fundraiser would be a good event to pair with the Kaneville Fire Department’s Easter egg hunt,” Pat said. “We’ll have a table set up during the event, and my son, Tyler, will be there to help out. My goal is to send each of these families a $500 check, and we’ve raised $102 up to this point.”

Raffle tickets will be sold at the fire station, 46W536 Lovell St. in Kaneville, during the Easter egg hunt, 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Saturday, March 31. Tickets can also be purchased at Hill’s Country Store from now until Wednesday, April 14, at 3 p.m. Raffle tickets will be sold for $1 each, or six for $5.

Pat said there are at least 10 or 15 big prizes lined up already for the raffle, including a $50 Visa gift card from Old Second Bank, a $25 gift card to Ream’s Market, a $25 gift card to Sam’s Club, a gift basket from American Bank and Trust in Elburn, a gift card to Panera Bread, a blu-ray player, and a $50 gift basket from Hill’s Country Store.

As for the actual raffle drawing, Pat believes it will take place sometime during the middle of next week.

“I am thinking it will happen April 4 or 5, so we can write the checks and mail them to the families by Easter, which is April 8,” she said.

Alexa said the purchase of just one raffle ticket can make a difference in the lives of both families.

“The pictures of the damage just looked horrible, and I can’t even imagine losing all of my stuff like (these families did). If you can come out and just buy one or two raffle tickets, you’re helping them,” she said.

A different type of approach

in Elburn/Featured by

Local chiropractor offers alternative to meds for ADHD

by Susan O’Neill
Editor’s note: In order to protect the medical privacy of the story subjects, the patient’s first name was changed. In addition, the last names and hometown of the patient and his mother were withheld.

ELBURN—John, an area 12-year-old, has been battling a diagnosis of moderate-to-severe Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) since he was 5 years old. At the time of his diagnosis, John had trouble following directions and staying on task, which limited his academic functioning.

John hasn’t had to fight his battle alone, of course. His mother, Janet, has been right there beside him, every step of the way. Janet said John’s doctors tried five different medications at varying doses. She said that although some degree of relief was achieved, the side effects far outweighed the benefits. Because the drugs stimulate the brain, she said her son experienced sleeplessness, headaches and dizziness; he had a loss of appetite, and as a result, became very thin. He was moody, and at times, had an aggravated demeanor.

“It was always trial and error,” she said. “As he was growing and changing, the medications would become less effective, and if we gave him too high a dose, it had a ‘zombie’ effect.”

He has needed extra assistance in the classroom. From third grade on, he has worked with specialists for reading and writing, including extra tutoring for comprehension. This year, he is in a special classroom of 10 students for those subjects. During summers, Janet would take him off of the medication, and she said she would see the problems return.

About a year ago, a friend told Janet about Vital Chiropractic in Elburn, and that chiropractor Dr. David Foss was able to help children with ADHD symptoms. Janet said that, although she had grown up with a negative perception of chiropractors, she had tried everything else, so she decided to give it a try.

Janet said Dr. Foss evaluated John and found many misalignments of his spine.

“He was carrying 30 pounds extra on one leg,” she said.

Dr. Foss started out doing spinal adjustments with John three times a week. He is currently down to once a week, at a maintenance level.

John is in sixth grade this year, and he is off all his medications. The school psychologist repeated a battery of tests that John had last taken in third grade to measure his attention and comprehension, and he showed significant improvement. Next year, he will be in a regular classroom for the entire day.

She said that although when children reach John’s current age, many of them grow out of their hyperactivity, she believes there is a correlation between Foss’ treatment and his improvement.

“I see such a big improvement,” she said. “I see a correlation. I don’t think it’s coincidence.”

She said that he still has to work harder than other children.

“The ADD doesn’t just disappear,” she said.

Janet admits that she doesn’t understand the science, except that the messages from John’s brain are now able to flow freely throughout his nervous system, and his improvement in school has had a snowball effect.

“His personality has changed; he’s so happy now,” she said. “His self-esteem has improved tremendously, he likes school and he has more friends. Everything has come together for him.”

Janet said that she is grateful for all the teachers and tutors who have helped John along the way for the progress he has made, but the big improvements he has made have been in the last year.

“He’s just taken off in the last year,” she said. “He’s just a different boy.”

Foss is careful to say that he doesn’t “treat” ADHD or the other diseases.

“You just have to remove the interference to the life force that flows through the nervous system, and the body heals itself,” he said.

He said he doesn’t believe that ADHD is a disorder, but that many children diagnosed with ADHD and other learning disabilities have problems processing the information they receive through their senses. They can be either hypersensitive or hyposensitive to taste, touch and sounds.

“It’s like having a mind with a Ferrari engine, but with bicycle brakes,” he said. “They’ve got minds that go, go, go, but they don’t know how to stop it.”

He explained that chiropractic care, instead of just treating the symptoms, diagnoses the causes of the problems.

“It’s all neurological,” he said.

Foss said there are three components, which he calls neurosensory integration, to how he works with children who have these sensory-processing problems.

Rather than using medications, which many medical doctors use to treat children with ADHD, Foss said he makes adjustments to the structures of the spine and the cranial bones, and then gives the children things to do at home that address their nutritional deficiencies and remove toxins in the body, as well as brain or neuro-exercises that can improve neurological function.

The nutrition component includes certain vitamins and minerals, eliminating grains, sugars and dairy-as well as toxicities, such as artificial flavors, coloring and preservatives-from their diet. The exercises include time on a machine in Foss’ office called “the vibe,” which generates a whole-body vibration that he says “super-stimulates” the nervous system.

The children also go to outside physical and occupational therapy to help integrate their treatment.

“Parents don’t want to put the kids on drugs, but that’s all they get from their medical doctor, and that’s not health care,” Foss said.

Foss said that he wants to provide an alternative to drugs that allows the body to heal itself.

He wants to educate parents in the area on the basics of the sensory systems and the natural alternatives he provides for conditions such as ADHD. He will offer a seminar on Tuesday, April 3, at Heritage Prairie Farm. Space is limited, so he encourages parents to call (630) 365-9887 to register.

‘Wine, Cheese and ADD’

Neuro Sensory Integration Seminar
Dr. David Foss, D.C.
Tuesday, April 3
6:30 p.m.
Heritage Prairie Farm
2N308 Brundidge Road
(4.5 miles west of Elburn off Route 38)
Local wine, cheese and
hors d’oeuvres will be provided
Call Foss’ office at (630) 365-9887
to register (space limited to first
20 registrants)

Two out of three ain’t bad

in Baseball/Featured by

Wins over BC, Marmion make diamond less rough
by Mike Slodki
KANELAND—An season-opening loss wasn’t ideal, but soon after, Kaneland baseball acted and played like the champions they were against hosts Burlington Central and Marmion.

March 21 saw Plainfield North best the visitors by a final of 3-1, but the Knights put up huge numbers against the Rockets in a 12-6 win on Thursday. Saturday saw the Knights win over the host Cadets in Aurora by a final of 7-2.

Trevor Storck earned the win (1-0) against Marmion, going six innings and scattering just two runs on three hits.

Ray Barry went 2-for-4 with two doubles, while Quinn Buschbacher went 2-for-3 with two runs and an RBI.

KHS plated three runs in the fourth and four more in the fifth for the win.

Against the Rockets, John Hopkins earned his first win over the year with four K’s and four runs allowed. Matt Limbrunner pitched the final three innings in relief for the save.

Buschbacher had a double and HR with four RBI, while Tom Fox also went yard and had a double with three RBI.

Down 4-0, Buschbacher jacked a three-run bomb to leftfield to close within 4-3.

“It was a fastball down the middle,” Buschbacher said. “I needed to help my team and we needed the runs.”

Coach Brian Aversa was happy at the offensive output from needed cogs like Buschbacher.

“Quinn’s a big part of our lineup, and he hit the ball when we needed it,” Aversa said. “We’re going to rely on him this year.”

The top of the fourth had Kaneland on top to stay with four runs. Jake Razo’s RBI single was the go-ahead hit, while Buschbacher and Trever Heinle had an additional RBI. KHS scored one more in the fifth and four more in the sixth to accentuate the lead.

Against Plainfield North. Drew Peters suffered the loss on the hill, but KHS saw an RBI from Heinle. Plainfield North’s three-run output in the first would be all they needed.

Kaneland’s spring break was set to bring it to Millikin University in Decatur, Ill., to play Decatur Eisenhower on Thursday, May 29.

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