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    How dangerous are suburban mall parking lots?

    Westfield Hawthorn Mall in Vernon Hills does not report significant accident increases at this time of year, but insurance companies and local police report more accidents take place in mall parking lots this time of year.

    Dec 19, 2014 5:43 PM

    As you head off to the malls for your last-minute shopping, a word to the wise from the experts: Pay attention in the parking lot. Insurance companies and local police report more accidents take place in mall parking lots this time of year, and a major factor is distraction. “It’s not just the other drivers on their cellphones but pedestrians on their cellphones,” Vernon Hills police spokesman Kim Christianson said.

    News

    Quinn appoints his budget chief to be comptroller

    Gov. Pat Quinn has named his budget director, Jerry Stermer, to serve as comptroller until Jan. 12.

    Dec 19, 2014 5:40 PM

    Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn has named his budget chief as a short-term replacement for late Comptroller Judy Baar Topinka. Jerry Stermer has been director of the governor’s budget office since 2012. He was the Chicago Democrat’s chief of staff during Quinn’s first term and the longtime director of advocacy group Voices for Illinois Children.

    News

    New Metropolis director plans for original programming

    New Metropolis Executive Director Joe Keefe, left, helped discover talent on the local theater circuit such as David Koechner. They are pictured at The Second City’s 50th anniversary party in 2009.

    Dec 19, 2014 6:39 PM

    New Metropolis Performing Arts Centre Executive Director Joe Keefe said Friday he wants the Arlington Heights theater to become a “greenhouse” for the development of original productions — just one idea he has to make the financially struggling venue sustainable. Keefe said original productions at Metropolis would build upon the facility’s existing school of performing arts that involves actors, musicians, playwrights and directors.

    News

    Obama: Sony ‘made a mistake’ in pulling film

    President Barack Obama said Sony Corp. made a mistake in canceling the release of its movie “The Interview” under threat made by hackers in North Korea.

    Dec 19, 2014 2:38 PM

    President Barack Obama said Friday that Sony Pictures Entertainment “made a mistake” in shelving a satirical film about a plot to assassinate North Korea’s leader, and he vowed the United States will respond “in a place and manner and time that we choose” to a hack attack the FBI blamed on the secretive Communist regime.

    News

    White Christmas out east could mess up holiday travel

    Cold arctic air from Canada will eventually make its way to Chicago.

    Dec 19, 2014 2:33 PM

    AccuWeather reports a storm bearing strong winds, heavy snow, torrential rain, thunderstorms and fog will converge on the Northeast and Midwest on Christmas Eve and will likely create major travel delays, both on the roads and at airports. The early stages of travel problems from patchy rain and fog will develop on Tuesday, AccuWeather said.

    News

    Naperville hospital’s nurses awarded top ‘magnet’ status

    Edward Hospital nursing leaders Patti Ludwig-Beymer, vice president and chief nursing officer, and Denise Arp, clinical nurse educator and magnet program co-director, celebrate the announcement Friday that the hospital has been certified for a third time as a magnet program by the American Nurses Credentialing Center.

    Dec 19, 2014 4:19 PM

    The 1,200 nurses at Edward Hospital in Naperville got some big news Friday. Their hospital received magnet status for the third time from the American Nurses Credentialing Center — a major honor in the nursing world, said Patti Ludwig-Beymer, vice president and chief nursing officer. “To be magnet once is exciting, twice is quite an honor and three times — it’s beyond our wildest dreams,” Ludwig-Beymer said.

    Life & Entertainment

    5 things to do in the suburbs this weekend

    A Mannheim Steamroller Christmas plays the Rosemont Theatre on Saturday, Dec. 20.

    Dec 19, 2014 1:04 PM

    Unless you’ve gone all Grinch on the holidays, you can still enjoy a number of seasonal shows this weekend designed to get you in the Christmas spirit. Options include an alternative take on “A Christmas Carol” in Naperville, a multimedia Christmas concert in Rosemont and a Irish-themed musical celebration in Grayslake.

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