DeKalb County News Briefs

Chronicle Media

The Sycamore Park District invites the public to visit its newest addition, the Community Center, with a grand opening April 14.


Tollway ramp reconstruction begins

Repair work has closed the ramp connecting Annie Glidden Road to westbound Interstate 88 for about six. This is the first of a summer season of ramp closures at the Illinois Tollway interchange.

The tollway is working to resurface and rebuild ramps and bridges at six interchanges on I-88 between Route 251 in Rochelle and Orchard Road in Aurora. This work is part of Move Illinois, a 15-year, $14 billion capital program.

All four ramps connecting I-88 to Annie Glidden Road will be rebuilt. Bridge deck repairs on the bridge connecting Annie Glidden Road and eastbound I-88 also are scheduled.

Once the work at the westbound I-88 entrance ramp is complete, which is expected to be sometime in May, the other three ramps at the interchange simultaneously will close with traffic once again routed to the Peace Road Interchange. The work will not begin until Northern Illinois University’s spring semester ends and NIU graduation ceremonies have been held. Maps and reconstruction information about the interchange improvements are available at

A 45-mph speed limit will be enforced in work zones throughout the construction season.

Once the interchange work concludes, DeKalb city officials will execute a plan to widen lanes and install a new traffic signal at the intersection of Annie Glidden and Fairview Drive. The local project will cost an estimated $1.1 million and will go out to bid in late April.

Concert to benefit hospice care here, South Africa

A concert will bridge the miles between DeKalb and South Africa and raise funds for hospice care in both areas.

The seventh annual Transformation Through Rhythm benefit concert will be held 2 p.m. April 8, at the DeKalb High School Auditorium, 501 W. Dresser Road. Admission is free, but donations are requested for Northwestern Medicine Hospice DeKalb’s Music Therapy Program and its sister hospice, Knysna Sedgefield Hospice, in South Africa.

Ensembles from the Northern Illinois University Percussion Studio, DeKalb High School Percussion Ensemble/Steel Pans and the Harambee African Percussion Ensemble will perform. Also, a market will sell handmade jewelry created with African beads. All of the proceeds from the sale will benefit the Knysna Sedgefield Hospice.

Proceeds from last year’s Transformation Through Rhythm concert helped bring food relief to hospice patients and their families in Knysna who live in harsh conditions and extreme poverty. The economic climate in Knysna makes it increasingly difficult to secure food donations. The concert funded 67 boxes of nutritious food.

Since spring 2004, Northwestern Medicine Hospice DeKalb has been part of the Twinning Initiative of the Foundation for Hospices in Sub-Saharan Africa. Help is particularly important because of the continued HIV/AIDS epidemic there.

For more information about Transformation Through Rhythm, call Northwestern Medicine Hospice DeKalb at 815-756-3000.

Red Cross to install smoke alarms for free

The American Red Cross will send in volunteers April 28 to install free smoke alarms in some DeKalb neighborhoods. The effort is part of the Red Cross’s Sound the Alarm, Save a Life campaign.

DeKalb has been identified as one of many northern Illinois communities with high-risk neighborhoods to receive smoke alarms over the next four weeks. Red Cross estimates that its volunteers and partners will install about 100,000 smoke alarms across the county from April 28 through May 19. However, the Red Cross needs volunteers to do the work, and is recruiting help. To apply, visit, 


Community center makes its debut April 14

The Sycamore Park District will show off its newest addition with the opening April 14 of the new Community Center.

The public is invited from noon to 4 p.m. to view the 40,000-square-foot center at 480 Airport Road. Activities such as a scavenger hunt, program and facility demonstrations and a staff meet-and-greet are planned. At 4 p.m., the DeKalb Park Board of Commissioners will commemorate the building opening with a simultaneous basketball shoot. 

Then, after that, the center will be open for business offering 24-hour access to the fitness center.

The community center will offer a wellness program, Pathway Fitness, in cooperation with Northwestern Medicine and Northern Illinois University’s Department of Kinesiology.

In addition to an elevated track, two full-court gyms, three multipurpose rooms and a dance and aerobics studio, the community center will house recreation and administrative staff offices. The current office at 940 E. State St. will close April 11.

Special discounts will be given April 14 and 15 on Pathway Fitness Passes and 24-hour access memberships. Also, the first 100 individuals to purchase a Pathway Fitness 24-Hour access membership will receive a gift.

For information, including costs for community center daily passes, Pathway Fitness memberships, to sign up for programs, or to buy park district aquatics passes, visit

Authors will talk about writing

Local authors will explain what inspires and motivates them to write at a forum at the Sycamore Public Library, 103 E. State St. Starting at 6 p.m. April 11, authors Liz Botts of Cortland; Hannah Carmack, a recent graduate of Northern Illinois University; Beverly Finn of Sycamore; Dan Klefstad of DeKalb; Sheri Lowitzki, of Burlington; Kyle White, of northern Illinois; and Mike Zibrun, of Sycamore, will speak and read from their books. Books will be for sale. No registration is required. For information about the books they have written, go to



–DeKalb County News Briefs–