Kendall County News Briefs

Chronicle Media

Blackberry Farm in Aurora invites special needs children and their families to an evening on the Holiday Express on Nov. 30. (Photo courtesy of Fox Valley Park Dist.)


Holiday Express special needs night

Enjoy all the fun of Holiday Express at Blackberry Farm, 100 S. Barnes Road, Aurora, in a low-sensory environment on Nov. 30 from 5-8 p.m. No waiting in lines.

Instead, guests will experience a setup that’s sensitive to special needs families, with reduced lighting and music. Blackberry Farm is ADA compliant, but note that the hay wagon is non-handicap accessible.

Food and drinks available for purchase and pre-registration is required.

Take a magical ride on the Holiday Express train.

Visitors will see Lake Gregory and Blackberry Farm in all its holiday glory amid the twinkling lights and songs of Christmas. Back in the village, enjoy storytelling of the classics, festive decorations, reindeer food bar, hay wagon rides and a visit with Santa. And don’t miss the famous Adventure Playground – decorated as Candy Cane Village.

$7 per person (Children under 2 are free)

Kendall County

Seniors’ trip to Christkindle Market

Participants will be leaving Senior Services Associates at 908 Game Farm Road, Yorkville on Thursday, Nov. 29 at 10:08 am to the Christkindle Market at the Naper Setttlement.

They will first stop at Cracker Barrel for lunch and then head to the market. The bus will return to 908 Game Farm Road, Yorkville by 4 p.m. The cost will be $8 and lunch will be on your own.

If you are interested in attending the event, contact Senior Services Associates, at 630- 553-5777

The Indian Valley Community Band will perform its winter concert on Sunday, Nov. 25, at the Opera House in Sandwich. (Photo courtesy of Indian Valley Band)

Community band celebrates winter concert

The 27th annual Indian Valley Community Band Winter Concert will take place on Sunday, Nov. 25, at 2 p.m., at the Opera House in Sandwich, 140 E. Railroad St.

The band is under the direction of Jeff Ford. Ford was the jazz band director at Waubonsee Community College for 29 years and owns Jeff Ford Woodwind Repair in Oswego. He is taking over the reins from Dick Hart, who stepped down as conductor but continues to play trombone with this multigenerational band.

More than 35 musicians from over a dozen surrounding communities play a variety of concert music and Christmas melodies for the audience to enjoy.

The Opera House is handicap accessible, with a walking ramp just west of the front door and elevator inside that will take patrons to second floor. This seasonal performance is free to the public.

This concert is the unofficial kick-off for the Franklin Mall Food Drive project, and concert goers are encouraged to bring a canned good, non-perishable item or monetary donation. The Lions Club will have members available at the door of the Opera House to gratefully accept donations.

This food drive/sharing project was started more than 60 years ago by the late Frankie and Peg Mall of Sandwich and is now directed by the Sandwich Lions Club with donations and assistance from the community and area residents.

Everyone is invited to stay for a punch and cookie reception after the musical event. For questions or more information about the annual concert, phone 815-786-6752 and leave a message or follow Indian Valley Community Band’s Facebook page.

Sheriff’s Deputies honored at awards banquet

On Nov. 2, members of the Kendall County Sheriff’s Office attended the Illinois Metropolitan Enforcement Group Directors/ Task Force Commanders Association annual awards for police officers, special agents, and other law enforcement personnel who have demonstrated extraordinary skill through narcotics enforcement.

The annual Awards Ceremony honors the dangerous and professional work accomplished through hundreds of drug investigations.

The Association is comprised of 22 multi-agency drug units that work throughout the State of Illinois. 

The following Kendall County Deputies were recognized:

  • Detective Bryan Harl, in recognition of his exceptional teamwork with members of Kendall County Cooperative Police Assistance Team during the Gary Castle investigation. Upon arresting Castle, Detective Harl obtained a confession regarding a fatal fentanyl overdose. Thanks to his dedication and arduous work an indictment for a drug induced homicide was secured.
  • Inspector Robert Lechowicz, in recognition of his investigative skills and commitment to the citizens of Kendall County during the Eduardo Morales investigation. While conducting surveillance, Inspector Lechowicz identified a local drug dealer. Because of his proficiency and tenacity, 649 grams of cannabis; 2 handguns; a Chrysler 300; and $5,271.00 were seized.

“These awards represent the finest examples of how our deputies, teams, drug units, and law enforcement resources collaborate on a daily basis to ensure that communities across Illinois are safe and protected,” said Sheriff Dwight Baird. “Narcotics enforcement is dangerous work, and despite the tough economic climate and fewer law enforcement resources, these men and women continue to risk their lives to ensure our streets are free from the dangers of criminal activity,” he added.


District 308 PRIDE winners announced

Community Unit School District 308 announced the 2018-19 October winners of the PRIDE (Proudly Recognizing Individuals Demonstrating Excellence) Recognition Program on Monday, Nov. 12, at the Board of Education meeting.

“We are proud to recognize these dedicated and committed individuals for their contributions of time and commitment they give to our students and our schools on a daily basis,” said Dr. John Sparlin, superintendent of schools.  “It is through their ongoing dedication and support that our students and staff achieve their goals.”

Each month, the program recognizes two teachers, one employee and one volunteer.  The winners for the month of October 2018 are:

Teachers of the Month: Brian McKenzie, math teacher at Traughber Junior High School; and Brian Chandler, math teacher at Oswego East High School.

Employee of the Month: Matthew Kane, payroll coordinator at the district administration center.

Volunteer of the Month: Karla Lundy, parent from Thompson Junior High School.


Library to aid in Holiday Food Drive

The Sandwich Library will act as one of the food donation drop off locations participating in the Franklin Mall Christmas Food Drive. The program collects food donations for families within the Sandwich School system sponsored by the Sandwich Lion’s Club.

Bring any donations to the library and drop off in the appropriate bins until Dec. 19. Acceptable donations include non-perishable boxed/canned goods, peanut butter, jelly, canned meats,

soups, and cereals. If you have any questions, contact the library at 815-786-8308.

Five Library Board seats spots open

Five seats on the seven-member Sandwich Public Library District Board of Trustees will be open for the Tuesday, April 2, 2019 consolidated election.

Four of the seats will be for a full, four-year term expiring in April 2023, while one seat will be a two-year term expiring in 2021.

To be eligible, a candidate must be a registered voter; have resided in the Library District for at least one year of the filing of a nomination petition; not be delinquent in paying real estate taxes to the Library District or delinquent as to other indebtedness to the Library District; not have a conviction for any infamous crime, bribery, perjury, or other felony.  

Candidate nomination petitions must have at least 27 signatures from registered voters who reside within the Library District.

Election packets containing petition forms and instructions are available in the Sandwich Public Library District.

Completed nomination petitions signed by voters and circulators may be filed on weekdays from Monday, Dec. 10, through Monday, Dec. 17, at the Sandwich Public Library District. The office will be open Monday through Friday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. File completed nomination petitions, a

Statement of Candidacy, a receipt from the County Clerk indicating that a Statement of Economic Interests has been filed with the County Clerk, and a Loyalty Oath (optional). For further information, call Amy Vidlak Girmscheid at 815-786-8308, ext. 212.



–Kendall County News Briefs–