DeKalb County News Briefs

The use of photography helped to chronicle the Civil War in unprecentated ways. A presentation on the history and use of wet plate photography during the Civil War will be given at 6 p.m. June 11, at the Sycamore Public Library, 103 E. State St.


Noah, Olivia big names for babies

Do you have a newborn named Noah or Olivia? If so, you helped make these the top names for babies born in Illinois during 2017, according to the Social Security Administration’s recent announcement.

The second-most-popular names in Illinois — Liam and Emma — were the most popular names nationwide during the same year.

Rounding out the list for boys’ names in Illinois were, in declining order of popularity, Benjamin, Logan and Alexander.

For girls, the remaining ones in the top five were Ava, Sophia and Isabella.


Grants awards to youth projects

Ten organizations serving youth in DeKalb County have received a total of $12,562 in grants for their projects and programs

Youth Engaged in Philanthropy, a branch of the DeKalb County Community Foundation, awarded the money. YEP teaches high school students about local nonprofits, grant making and philanthropy. The youth philanthropy program builds up to a final meeting where YEP members review grant applications and allocate money. Then they present their grant recommendations to the full DeKalb County Community Foundation Board of Directors for final approval.

The 2018 YEP Grants include:

  • Adventure Works of DeKalb County: $2,157 to renovate the therapy space;
  • Boy Scout Troop 18: $600 to buy and renovate a trailer to store and transport troop equipment;
  • Bursting Bubbles: $1,250 to implement an anti-bullying/suicide prevention program in DeKalb County;
  • DeKalb County Community Gardens: $1,508 to buy tools and supplies for the Community Food Needs Program;
  • DeKalb Public Library: $1,000 to support the Little Learners Outreach program at the Early Learning and Development Center;
  • Hope Haven: $2,500 to support trauma therapy for youth experiencing chronic homelessness and childhood trauma;
  • Jefferson Elementary School Community Garden: $400 to buy tools and supplies for the student Community Garden the school;
  • Kishwaukee Family YMCA: $1,000 to buy Chrome Books for before- and after-school programs;
  • Somonauk School District 432: $847 to buy new risers for the music department; and
  • Sycamore High School: $1,300 to purchase equipment to expand the school’s welding shop.


Chamber looking for top citizen

Who should be Kirkland’s Citizen of the Year? The Greater Kirkland Area Chamber of Commerce is asking the public for nominations.

Those who want to nominate someone should provide a statement in no more than150 words that describes why the nominee deserves the award. Nominations are due May 25.

The nominee should be someone who has performed significant public service, fostered pride in the community or made a lasting contribution to the quality of life within the Hiawatha School District 426 boundaries, which is the same area the chamber serves.

The nominee does not need to live in the area, but has to have been active in the community.

Nominations can be emailed to with Kirkland Citizen of the Year in the subject line or can be sent to Kirkland Chamber of Commerce, P.O. Box 208, Kirkland, 60146.


Somonauk Road closed for bridge repairs 

Part of Somonauk Road near Little Rock Creek will remain closed for more than three months so the bridge can be replaced, the DeKalb County Highway Department has announced.

Somonauk Road, a quarter-mile south of U.S. Route 30, is expected to remain closed until Aug. 31. Civil Constructors of Freeport is doing the work for about $1 million. The bridge is 55 years old.

For updates on the project, call 815-756-9513, email, or visit


Children invited to enroll in theater summer workshop

The Indian Valley Theatre Summer Workshop will teach children all facets of theater performance.

This year, first through sixth grades will perform the show “The Knight of the Dragon.” Classes will run June 11-22, with shows on June 22 and 23. Class times are 9 a.m. to noon Monday to Friday.

The Teen Workshop classes will run July 16-27, with two shows performed on July 28. This year’s show will be “Alice in Wonderland.” Class times are 9 a.m. to noon Monday to Friday.

All classes and performances are held at the Sandwich Opera House, 140 E. Railroad St. in Sandwich.

Both sessions are $90 per student and include a workshop T-shirt. Class sizes are limited.

For information, call Indian Valley Theatre at (888) 365-8889 and leave a message with name and contact phone number or email Registration forms are available at


Program to focus on history of Civil War photography

A presentation on the history and use of wet plate photography during the Civil War will be given at 6 p.m. June 11, at the Sycamore Public Library, 103 E. State St. The audience will learn about the history of the birth of photography, famous 19th century photographers such as Louis Daguerre and Matthew Brady; a description of the wet plate photographic process, and a demonstration of a wet plate 1850s box camera.

This program is appropriate for both adults and younger audiences (grade 4 and up). Audience participation is encouraged and includes dressing up participants in period clothing to sit for a Civil War-period photograph. No registration required.


–DeKalb County News Briefs–