DuPage County News Briefs

Chronicle Media

The public soon will be able to see the striking staircase in the Governor’s Mansion again. A $15 million renovation project has been completed, and Gov. Bruce Rauner and his wife, Diane, have returned to the mansion. They use it when they are in Springfield and for governmental functions. A July 14 public event is being planned.


Gubernatorial candidates contribute to mansion repairs

After an almost $15 million renovation, Gov. Bruce Rauner and his wife, Diana, have moved back into the Governor’s Mansion in downtown Springfield. Rauner and his opponent in the November election, J.B. Pritzer, have both donated to the effort. So, whoever is the mansion’s next occupant, he has helped in the effort to make the mansion livable again.

Diana Rauner, the governor’s wife, has co-chaired the non-profit Illinois Governor’s Mansion Association, which raised the money for the work from private donors.

And, it turns out, a couple of those donors are Democratic gubernatorial candidate J.B. Pritzker, and his wife, M.K. The Pritzker campaign says M.K. Pritzker was on the mansion association board before her husband’s bid for the office. A list of all donors is expected to be released this week.

The Rauners do not live in the mansion full time, but use it when they are in Springfield and for governmental social functions.

A July 14 event is being planned to reopen the mansion to the public.


Trees will be backdrop for craft beer festival

Toast to the trees with the fifth annual Morton Arboretum Craft Beer Festival featuring more than 40 breweries, 1-5 p.m. June 23, at The Morton Arboretum, 4100 Route 53, Lisle. Tickets cost $40-$60 for Arboretum members; $50-$70 for nonmembers; $15 for designated driver. 

New this year are four ciders and beers that can be topped with vanilla ice cream. The beers bring flavors of raspberry, pineapple, root beer and caramelized chocolate.

During the event, about 50 breweries will be pouring more than 100 different beers, many of which are from Chicagoland and the Midwest. A handful of summer-worthy wines will be available to sample. Some proceeds from beer and wine sales will benefit The Morton Arboretum.

For more information, go to mortonarb.org.


Folk music show comes to Cantigny

The unique sounds of Americana music will entertain the audience at the Riverside Folk Fest, to be held from 1-5 p.m. June 23 at Cantigny Park in Wheaton.

Headlining the event is Glass Mountain, a female trio of singers and multi-instrumentalists. Rounding out the lineup on the bandshell stage are the Riverside Minstrels, Riverside’s country and bluegrass youth band, followed by the band, Where’s Django?

Admission to Folk Fest is $5 per person, with a $10 parking fee per car. Admission for Cantigny members is free, though a $5 donation per person is suggested. The fest is a fundraiser for Riverside Center’s Imaginative Learning programs. Based in the western suburbs, Riverside Center is a supplemental education center dedicated to imaginative learning. Its programs include storytelling, film workshops, folk sessions, maker sessions (such as canoe-building) and journalism classes for budding reporters. 


North Central adds women’s wrestling

Women’s wrestling will become North Central College’s 27th sport for the 2019-20 school year.

NCC graduate Joe Norton, the men’s wrestling coach since 2014, will also coach the women. The season runs from October through February.

Over the past three years, NCC has been aggressive in adding new sports: men’s volleyball, women’s triathlon, men’s lacrosse and women’s bowling.

NCC is the fourth school in Illinois to add women’s wrestling, and the first in the Chicago area. Lindenwood Belleville, MacMurray and McKendree are the others. In all, 45 colleges nationwide will offer women’s wrestling as a sport next winter.

Bank branches fall victim to online banking trend

The First Midwest Bank branch in Naperville is one of 19 branches the company plans to close before the end of the year. The company is closing the locations across northern Illinois and northwest Indiana in response to customers’ preference for banking online. Experts say it follows a national trend of consumers increasingly opting for digital banking.

First Midwest, which recently moved its headquarters from Itasca to Chicago’s O’Hare corridor, outlined the cost-cutting initiative last month. The closures, which represent 15 percent of First Midwest’s branches, will leave the bank with 110 locations.


Planning begins for dog park

The Elmhurst Park District has hired a firm to design the district’s first off-leash dog park. It will be built at the 3.4-acre site of a former trailer park at 0S761 Old York Road.

The district does not yet know what features the park should offer, but officials are discussing the need for separate areas for small and large dogs, among other details. Upland Design Ltd. of Plainfield is being paid $22,600 to analyze the site, get public input and prepare preliminary designs. 

The company, which also has a Chicago office, has designed dog parks for the Cook County Forest Preserve District and prepared a master plan for Southwest Community Park in Naperville.


Students offer massages during summer

College of DuPage’s Student Massage Therapy Clinic is now open for the summer, with appointments available at 1:45, 3 and 4:30 p.m. on Mondays through July 30 in the Student Resource Center, Room 1110, on the College’s Glen Ellyn campus.

The clinic offers hour-long Swedish and deep-tissue massage sessions at the price of $29 and provides hand-on experience for COD’s Massage Therapy students. College officials say that experience has helped the program to have a 100 percent job placement rate as well as a 100 percent pass rate for the Massage and Bodywork Licensing Examination.


–DuPage County News Briefs–