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Daily Archive : Friday August 5, 2011

News

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    Author Sherri Rinker is on a mission to encourage kids and their parents to read.

    Grayslake author puts kids to sleep with best-seller

    With a career in graphic design, two children and a household to run, Sherri Rinker never saw herself as a New York Times bestselling author, but the Grayslake native added "accomplished author" to her title this summer.

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    Men forced to strip in Waukegan robberies, police say

    Waukegan police are searching for a group of robbers who have been telling victims to strip down to their underwear as they rob them.

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    More than 1,000 considered “abandoned” between 2 and 4 a.m.July 23 at the Northwest Central Dispatch System during the storm.

    No 911 during storms? You weren't alone

    About 1,000 calls were dropped in a two-hour period when almost ten times the normal volume of calls came into Northwest Central Dispatch's 911 center the night of July 23 when a record rain fell on the suburbs.

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    Brewmaster Greg Browne blows off foam from a test tube as he measures the alcohol content of his brew.

    Behind the Scenes at Libertyville microbrewery

    Come behind the scenes at Mickey Finn's Microbrewery in Libertyville, where Brewmaster Greg Browne shows us what goes into making his popular Cerveza. “As a brewer, all we do is make the sweet liquid, the yeast is what actually makes the beer,” Browne said.

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    Brewmaster Greg Browne smells beer out of one of the fermentation tanks at Mickey Finn's Brewery in Libertyville.

    Images: Behind the scenes at Mickey Finn's Brewery in Libertyville
    Behind the scenes with the brewmaster Greg Browne at Mickey Finn's Brewery in Libertyville as he prepares the weekly batch of beer. This batch is called Cervesa, a Mexican-style lager.

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    Once-dry Wheaton holds first Ale Fest

    Micro-brew festivals dot the suburbs throughout the summer. But the one in Wheaton on Saturday has special significance, as it takes place in a city that was still dry in the 1980s. Mayor Mike Gresk says he still meets people who think his city does not allow alcohol.

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    Jessica Prinner of South Elgin is off like a flash as she rides in the women's time trials during Friday's Tour of Elk Grove 2011.

    Images: Tour of Elk Grove Cycling, Day One
    The Tour of Elk Grove kicked off Friday with the Mayor's Charity Time-Trial. This marks Mayor Craig Johnson's return to the race after missing it last year due to a cycling injury. Other races included the Women's Cat. 1/2 Time-Trial and the Pro Men's Time-Trial.

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    Algonquin lawyer faces murder-for-hire charges

    An Algonquin attorney was arrested Thursday in a murder-for-hire scheme in which the intended target was the ex-husband of his girlfriend whose divorce he had handled, authorities said Friday. Jason W. Smiekel, 29, was charged with using a cellphone in a murder-for-hire plot for which he discussed paying $20,000.

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    Tinie Tempah performs during the Lollapalooza music festival at Grant Park in Chicago, Friday, Aug. 5, 2011.

    Images: Lollapalooza Day One
    Lollapalooza kicked off the opening day of the three-day music festival in Chicago's Grant Park on Friday. Bands including Perfect Circle, OK Go, Coldplay and Muse were just of few of the many bands that performed.

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    Timmothy Pitzen

    Mother: ‘You will never find’ Aurora boy

    The mother of a 6-year-old boy missing from Aurora predicted the child would “never” be found before taking her own life several months ago in a Rockford hotel room, authorities revealed Friday. Timmothy Pitzen last was seen May 13.

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    The Rev. Clint Roberts, left, and Brian Beaird, far right, both of Naperville, were two of the bicyclists involved in helping Friday in a Fox River rescue at the Geneva dam.

    1 dead, 1 rescued from Fox River in Geneva

    Despite heroic efforts from bystanders and rescue workers, a man died Friday afternoon after becoming trapped in the Fox River below the Geneva dam. A 12-year-old boy, pulled from the river by Naperville cyclists on a church outing, survived.

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    Buffalo Grove crash leads to hazmat spill

    Hazardous materials teams were called to a Buffalo Grove driveway after an elderly woman crashed her car into her garage, causing a lawn chemical to spill and create fumes, authorities said.

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    Volo woman struck and killed as she tried to check mail

    A Volo woman crossing Route 12 to check her mail was struck and killed by a vehicle Friday afternoon, authorities said.

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    Chicago man accused of pimping in Arlington Heights

    A Chicago man was arrested and charged with pimping in connection with an undercover prostitution sting in Arlington Heights, authorities said Friday.

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    Jules Sottile Campagna and her godson, Anthony Sottile.

    Hoffman run for St. Jude Hospital is Saturday

    Jules Sottile Campagna, a Hoffman Estates resident, along with the Hoffman Estates Park District, is hosting a walk/run on Saturday, Aug. 6 for her godson, Anthony Sottile, who passed away from leukemia a year ago February.

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    Quinn picks McHenry native for veterans agency

    Erica Borggren is only 30, but she's already been valedictorian at West Point, a Rhodes Scholar, a company commander in Korea and a high-level aide to Gen. David Petraeus in the Middle East. If Gov. Pat Quinn gets his way, she'll also be director of the Illinois Department of Veterans' Affairs.

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    Quinn blocks law letting people collect roadkill

    Forget about squirrel stew or a nice coyote-fur coat. Gov. Pat Quinn has vetoed legislation letting people collect animals killed along Illinois roads.

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    Grayslake Save-A-Pet holds reunion

    Save-A-Pet will be host its 29th annual “Celebration of Life” reunion from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 6, at the adoption center, 31664 N. Fairfield Road, Grayslake.

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    Century Park in Vernon Hills holds grand opening

    The Vernon Hills Park District will host a summer “park chat” and the grand opening celebration of the newly developed Century Park North, from 6 to 8 p.m. Tuesday, Aug. 9.

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    Ela library offers newspaper database

    Daily editions of newspapers from around the world are now available online using the Ela Area Public Library’s newest database, Press Display.

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    Aurora man shot fatally in Chicago

    An Aurora man was shot and killed Thursday night in Chicago, authorities said.

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    Byron Broger

    15 years for ‘early release’ convict in Elgin crime

    A Rockford man who was one parole for a burglary conviction is sentenced to 15 years for an August 2010 home invasion and attempted rape of two mentally handicapped women in Elgin. Byron Broger also must register as a sex offender.

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    Police reports

    A LaGrange man was charged with felony marijuana possession after a traffic stop Monday night at Bliss Road and the eastbound lanes of Interstate 88 near Sugar Grove, according to police.

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    Fox Valley police reports

    An orange 2011 Dodge Charger was stolen Tuesday night from a dealership’s parking lot in the 1000 block of East Chicago Street in Elgin, police said. Staff members said two men came to the dealership that day and expressed interest in putting $20,000 down on the car, but wanted to test drive it first. Staff members refused to turn over the keys, though, because the men refused to show them a...

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    Salvatore Tuzzolino

    Disbarred Mount Prospect lawyer charged with theft in DuPage

    A former Mount Prospect attorney who was voluntarily disbarred for neglecting and misrepresenting clients is now facing criminal charges alleging he continued to practice without a license -- and stole more than $10,000 in the process, authorities said Friday.

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    Pilot Jim Dexter flies the Farmers Insurance Zeppelin airship over the Fox River Friday.

    Images: The Farmers Airship
    The Farmers Airship, one of only two Zeppelins currently flying globally, made a stop at the DuPage County Airport in West Chicago on Friday. It's the largest passenger airship in the world, 15 feet longer than the Boeing 747 and 50 feet longer than the largest blimp.

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    Myrtle Rose, 75, checks out her 1941 Piper J-3 Cub after a brief flight from the airstrip at her home, Friday, Aug. 5, 2011, in South Barrington. The aviation enthusiast was out for a quick flight on Wednesday when she saw two F-16 fighter jets out her cockpit window after she strayed into restricted airspace during a visit to Chicago by President Barack Obama. Rose says she's filed a report with the Federal Aviation Administration explaining she didn't know she wasn't supposed to fly in the area that day.

    75-year-old pilot thought F-16s eyeing her 'cute' plane

    Myrtle Rose was just taking a short flight over the Northwest suburbs when the 75-year-old aviation enthusiast looked out her cockpit window to see two F-16 fighter jets. She assumed the military pilots were just slowing down to get a closer look at her antique plane.

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    An ant scampers across a Queen Anne’s lace plant in full bloom in Elburn. It is also known as wild carrot.

    Wildflowers offer beauty and medicinal properties,too

    Roadsides are transformed from gravel wastelands to places of botanical beauty this month. The cream-colored bouquets of Queen Anne’s lace sway in the wind, complimented by the smaller blue flowered chicories. These plants hail from two of the largest and most important plant families in our flora.

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    Kevin Burns

    Geneva mayor enters Kane County chairman race, Oberweis out

    Geneva Mayor Kevin Burns will make it official Tuesday: He is running for the Republican nomination for Kane County Board chairman. He'll announce his plans at a rally at noon on the north lawn of the Kane County Government Center, 719 S. Batavia Ave., Geneva.

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    The red-light camera at Higgins and Barrington roads in Hoffman Estates.

    Hoffman Estates will begin ticketing for red-light violations

    Starting Monday, Aug. 8, the village of Hoffman Estates will begin writing tickets to red-light violators at Barrington and Higgins roads.

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    Pastor Bill Hybels speaks during a previous leadership summit at Willow Creek Community Church in South Barrington.

    Global Leadership Summit coming to Willow Creek

    Willow Creek’s Global Leadership Summit, this year featuring speakers including Howard Schultz, president of Starbucks, and Cory Booker, mayor of Newark, will be held this week at the South Barrington church, with 8,000 expected to attend.

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    The staff of the Allendale Association in Lake Villa recently helped the kids raise money to aid victims of recent natural disasters.

    Allendale students, staff raise money for Red Cross
    Nearly 60 children from Allendale School recently participated in a fundraising drive for victims of this spring’s devastating earthquakes, floods and tornadoes.

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    Bowlathon to benefit Aurora outreach ministry

    Organizers of this year's Wayside Cross Ministries' Master’s Touch Bowlathon Fundraiser on Aug. 8 hope to raise more than $10,000 to help support the work of its outreach ministry started 80 years ago in Aurora.

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    Wealth of history at Antique Tool Show, Sale
    Members of the Early American Industries Association and the Mid-West Tools Collectors Association will hold the annual Antique Tool Show and Sale at the Garfield Farm Museum from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Sunday, Aug. 7.

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    Arlington Hts. fests to bookend running of the Arlington Million

    Celebrate the end of summer with two back-to-back, high-energy events in downtown Arlington Heights on Friday and Saturday, Aug. 12-13. It starts with Mane Event, the “Million Dollar Block Party” from 5-11 p.m. Friday. Aug. 12 at Vail Avenue and Campbell Street. And after the Million runs on Saturday, come back downtown for the Taste of Arlington Heights.

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    Pictured, from left, at the scholarship presentation are: Jaycee President Jeremy Ewing; Daniel Vanek; Sarah Kuhl; and Hoffman Estates Mayor Bill McLeod.

    Hoffman Jaycees announce 2011 scholarship winners

    The Hoffman Estates Jaycees announced the winners of its 2011 college scholarships. Scholarships were awarded to well-rounded individuals based on merit, leadership skills and community service.

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    Lombard book sale reflects slumping economy

    The changing climate of the bookselling industry also is changing the customer base at the annual used book sale hosted by the Lombard area branch of the American Association of University Women. “With the economy and gas, we used to have dealers come from Wisconsin, from Kansas to buy books, but they don’t do that anymore because it’s not worth their while,” AAUW member Mary Ann Grady said.

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    U-46 bias trial judge wants to hear all evidence

    The bias lawsuit against Elgin Area School District U-46 will go on after a federal judge on Thursday denied the school district's motion for judgement on partial findings. Judge Robert Gettleman said he could not rule on the first phase of the trial until he had more information.

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    Lawsuit: Batavia Wendy’s served contaminated buns

    A Hinckley man sues the Wendy's in Batavia, claiming he was served a hamburger bun in May that was contaminated in a fire at a Sycamore Wendy's. Kevin Lasswell took one bite and vomited and is suing for more than $100,000. He claims a delivery driver picked up the buns from Sycamore and then resold them to the Batavia location instead of destroying them.

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    John Philip Sousa IV

    Sousa’s great-grandson closes band season in Wheaton

    Wheaton Municipal Band welcomes John Philip Sousa IV for a performance Saturday evening at Edman Memorial Chapel.

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    Jury convicts 5 officers in post-Katrina shootings

    A federal jury on Friday convicted five current or former police officers in the deadly shootings on a New Orleans bridge after Hurricane Katrina.

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    Northwest suburban police blotter

    A man stole six queen bed sheet sets and a vacuum cleaner, value $1,500, from Bed Bath and Beyond in Mount Prospect even though they spotted the man because they had been warned that a man matching his description had stolen the same items out of other Bed Bath and Beyond stores.

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    Northwest suburban police blotter

    A Barrington woman was charged with hosting an underage drinking party at her home. Four 18-year-olds also were arrested and charged with consumption of alcohol by a minor.

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    An Atlas V rocket with the Juno spacecraft lifts off Friday from Space Launch Complex-41 in Cape Canaveral, Fla.

    NASA launches spacecraft on 5-year trip to Jupiter

    A sun-powered robotic explorer named Juno rocketed away Friday on a five-year journey to Jupiter, the solar system’s most massive and ancient planet.

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    Saying ‘thank you’ can be a tricky business

    Saying "thank you" is serious business. What we think is an obvious display of our gratitude may fail to communicate our feelings in the way we intend.

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    The Lisle Fire Department and state police respond to a motorcycle accident Friday on I-88 hear the Morton Arboretum.

    Motorcylist injured on I-88 in Lisle

    A motorcyclist was taken to Advocate Good Samaritan Hospital Friday following an accident that left him lying in the center lane of westbound I-88 in Lisle.

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    Batavia students display art at Depot Museum

    Thirty-five works of art by Batavia High School students are on display this summer at the Batavia Depot Museum, Houston and Water streets.

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    During a previous Links Technology Cup event, Chandler’s Chophouse distributes food to golfers on the course.

    Links Technology Cup features Taste on the Tee

    Taste on the Tee is a unique feature of the annual Links Technology Cup golf outing Wednesday, Aug. 10, at the Schaumburg Golf Club. An every-other-hole food and beverage experience, Taste is anchored by John Barleycorn, which hosts a post-event barbecue with all the fixings.

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    Elgin widower’s lawsuit: wife wrongly cremated

    A man is suing an Elgin funeral home and an East Dundee crematorium, saying he was not notified of his wife's death in November 2010 and her body was cremated against his wishes. Timothy Cahill, a trucker, says he was staying with his mother in Iowa and returned in December to find his home empty. After he learned of his wife's death, he learned she'd been cremated. He said her wish was to be...

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    Schaumburg Park District brews German beer seminar

    Learn how to brew beer this summer just like Schaumburg’s original German farmers once did. The Schaumburg Park District will offer area residents the chance to learn all about the age-old art of beer brewing from 7-10 p.m. Friday, Aug. 26 at its Volkening Heritage Farm.

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    Dr. Margaret B. Lee

    Buffalo Grove woman ends AmeriCorps community service

    Samantha Edidin of Buffalo Grove graduated from AmeriCorps National Civilian Community Corps, Pacific Region, wrapping up 10 months of community service nationwide. Edidin was one of 256 AmeriCorps NCCC members honored.

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    Guitar Center opens annual Drum-Off contest

    Guitar Center's annual Drum Off competition is gearing up, and Arlington Heights will be in the thick of it.

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    How and where to register your child for school
    The new school year is right around the corner meaning parents and students should start thinking about registration and paying any school fees. The entire process in Elgin Area District U-46 and Crystal Lake High School District 155 has been made easier with online registration.

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    Volunteers Kate and Bethany Bussey demonstrate for the Durant House Museum “Pickling Party.” This year, the old-fashioned fun will be offered Sundays, Aug. 7 and 28.

    Durant House Museum teaches pickling process
    The 1843 Durant House Museum will offer an afternoon of old-fashioned fun from 1 to 4 p.m. Sundays, Aug. 7 and 28. The pickling party will take place on the restored prairie farmhouse grounds. Learn about the pickling process and food preservation used in the 1840s.

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    Business and community leaders join Bruce Crowther, president and chief executive officer of Northwest Community Hospital, and Mount Prospect Village President Irvana Wilks at the hospital’s new health center. The Mount Prospect center will hold an open house Saturday, Aug. 6.

    Northwest Community Hospital Health Center opens
    Northwest Communiyt Hospital will hold an open house Saturday, Aug. 6, at its new health center in Mount Prospect.

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    Pastors Joel and Victoria Osteen speak to a crowd at Yankee Stadium during a recent “Night of Hope” event. The popular pastors will be at U.S. Cellular Field in Chicago Saturday night.

    Osteen brings ‘Hope' to Chicago with Saturday show

    A near sellout crowd of 40,000 will fill U.S. Cellular Field Saturday when TV preacher Joel Osteen brings his national “A Night of Hope” tour to Chicago. “The whole atmosphere of the evening is so inspiring,” said his wife Victoria Osteen.

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    Third grade teacher Katie Fiore organizes her room Thursday at Mechanics Grove school in Mundelein. Fiore is among the teachers and students moving to Mechanics Grove from Lincoln school, which closed at the end of the last school year as a cost-saving measure.

    Four schools now three in Mundelein D75

    Down to three schools, Mundelein District 75 will offer a new experience for many teachers, students and parents when classes begin Aug. 16.

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    One injured in knife fight at Arlington Heights bank

    One person is injured and a second in custody after a stabbing at a bank in Arlington Heights, officials said. Officers said two peope were fighting in the basement of the bank when one person was cut by the knife. Its unclear the cause of the fight.

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    Dist. 214 approves budget

    The Township High School District 214 board approved the tentative budget Thursday for the 2011-12 school year and approved a $15 million grant from the FAA that will allow the district to soundproof Elk Grove High School from the heavy amount of airplane traffic above the school.

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    Bomb squad destroys dynamite found in Naperville yard

    A Naperville man found a half-stick of dynamite outside of his home Wednesday and it was destroyed by police explosive experts.

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    BG Police searching for vandals to post office

    Someone threw a brick into a window at the Buffalo Grove Post Office either late Thursday night or early Friday morning, officials said.

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    The Elk Grove Park District will begin a $2.26 million renovation of Fox Run Golf Links Course this fall.

    Elk Grove parks to begin golf course renovations

    The Elk Grove Park District board of commissioners recently approved a long awaited $2.26 million renovation of Fox Run Golf Links Course.

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    Three tournaments will be held at the Libertyville Golf Course.

    Libertyville golf course to host three golf tournaments

    Libertyville Golf Course, the par-3 nine-hole golf course on the southeast side of the village, will host three golf tournaments in the next several weeks: the Libertyville Open, the 2-Club Challenge and the first Libertyville Senior Open.

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    Kane & DuPage Junior League seeks members

    The Junior Leage of Kane & DuPage Counties, an organization of women committed to helping at-risk children, is holding a series of information meetings to attract new members.

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    Kyle Alden, left, Stephanie Zblewski and Will Hennessy served as presidents of the Future Business Leaders of America chapter this year at Warren Township High School.

    Warren High students shine at business leadership conference

    Warren Township High School students in Future Business Leaders of America came back from the national conference in Orlando, Fla., with an armful of awards last month.

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    The work of Water Street Studio sculptor Rita Grendze is featured on the 2011 Art In Your Eye Festival poster, which is now on sale.

    Get Batavia’s Art In Your Eye poster now
    The seventh annual Art In Your Eye Festival recently introduced its 2011 fine art poster, which is now on sale. The high-quality, frameable poster features the sculpture “Less Than” by Rita Grendze.

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    Joyce Carlson, left, of Batavia, entered Thursday's mother/daughter lookalike contest twice, competing with both of her daughters — Eileen Swank of Crystal Lake and Brenda Dangalen, right, of Canada — at the McHenry County Fair. Carlson and Dangalen made the top six.

    Crowd sees double at McHenry County Fair lookalike contest

    While out and about in their native Woodstock, Ingrida Spokas and her daughter Diana often get double takes.The tall, willowy pair are also used to being mistaken for sisters. But there was no mistake Thursday night when they won McHenry County Fair's inaugural mother/daughter look alike contest, in which they competed against 18 other couples for $25.

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    Winfield trustee keeps pressing for street repairs

    It seems regardless of the issue before the Winfield village board, the discussion returns to its deteriorating roads.Three unrelated agenda items all crumbled into disagreements Thursday over whether new revenue streams should be earmarked for the village’s road maintenance program.

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    Dist. 54 registration is Aug. 11

    Schaumburg Township Elementary District 54 will hold registration on Thursday, Aug. 11 for any students new to the district or returning students who have not yet submitted their registration forms.

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    Voter-approved project underway

    Prospect Heights is starting the first phase of the $15 million road reconstruction project, said Mayor Nicholas Helmer Thursday.

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    An icy lake in Yosemite, July 5, 2011.

    Images: Photo Contest Finalists
    Each week you submit your favorite photo. We pick the best of the bunch and select 12 finlaists. Here are the finalists for the week of August 1st.

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    Gov. Pat Quinn celebrates with students and supporters after signing the Illinois Dream Act into law Monday at a Latino neighborhood high school in Chicago. The new law gives illegal immigrants access to private scholarships for college.

    Quinn to name immigrant scholarships commission by September

    Gov. Pat Quinn says that by the middle of September he hopes to name a nine-member commission that will establish private scholarships for immigrant children in Illinois both illegally and legally.

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    Vintage Sports Authentics boss arrested at Rosemont convention

    The head of a sports memorabilia company is charged with orchestrating a scheme to sell fraudulent merchandise — including jerseys said to be worn during games by baseball players like Alex Rodriguez, Mark McGwire and Albert Pujols. Steven Jensen was arrested in Rosemont.

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    Joyce Carlson, left, of Batavia entered the Mother Daughter Look-A-Like Contest twice, showing with both of her daughters, Eileen Swank, center, of Crystal Lake and Brenda Dangalen, right, of Canada, at the McHenry County Fair on Thursday.

    Images: Day two of the 2011 McHenry County Fair
    Day two of the 2011 McHenry County Fair in Woodstock.

Sports

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    Adam Dunn tosses his bat after drawing 1 of 7 walks by White Sox hitters Friday. Dunn scored on Carlos Quentin’s 2-run homer in the fifth inning.

    White Sox draw 7 free passes, snap 6-game skid

    Would a little patience at the plate pay off for the White Sox on Friday?While getting swept at home by the New York Yankees this week, the Sox didn’t draw a single walk. It was the first time since 1968 the team had gone four games without any free trips to first base.“We’re a swinging team, there’s no doubt about that, but we have guys that go out there and take walks,” manager Ozzie Guillen said before facing Minnesota.It took just three batters to break the streak as Paul Konerko drew a walk in the first inning, which helped create a run.The Sox ended up with 7 walks on Friday, none more important than a fifth-inning pass by Adam Dunn, which was followed by Carlos Quentin’s second home run of the night. The 2-run shot put the visitors ahead and the White Sox posted a 5-3 victory at Target Field, snapping a six-game losing streak.“This is the White Sox — up and down, unpredictable team,” Guillen told reporters in Minneapolis. “I take it day by day. Sometimes, I put my hopes so high, then a few days later, I’ve got a broken heart.”The Sox’ dismal history against the Twins is well-known. Heading into this contest, the Sox were 1-7 against Minnesota this season and 7-29 in the last 36 games.A more powerful streak, though, was Mark Buerhle’s run of quality starts. The left-hander allowed 3 unearned runs in the first inning when a Dunn error set up an RBI single by Joe Mauer and 2-run homer from designated hitter Jason Kubel.The pressure was on for Buerhle (9-5) to continue a remarkable run of allowing 3 runs or less in 16 consecutive starts. He came through, surrendering just 2 singles over the next 7 innings. Chris Sale gave up a two-out double in the ninth, but recorded his third save.The Buerhle streak now stands at 17 straight games allowing 3 runs or less, which hasn’t been done by a White Sox pitcher since Dave Lemonds had 17 in a row in 1972.“To be honest, I looked up there in the fifth inning at my pitch count and I thought it was higher than what it was,” Buehrle said after the game. “Just everything is working right now.”Quentin drove in 4 of the 5 runs. After the Sox loaded the bases with one out in the first inning, he brought home a run with a fielder’s choice grounder. Quentin homered in the third to make it 3-2, then added another long one to put the White Sox ahead in the fifth. The final run scored on a wild pitch in the eighth inning.Former Sox slugger Jim Thome, who has 598 career home runs, did not play for the Twins.Heading into Friday’s action, the Sox ranked second-to-last in the American League in drawing walks, ahead of only Minnesota.“When the team’s not playing well, when you’re not hitting; all of the sudden, you’re missing (Konerko). Then you want to overdo,” Guillen said. “That’s when you go backwards, start swinging at every pitch, start chasing bad pitches.“That happens to a lot of people, start chasing pitches because you’re desperate for hits. You’re hitting .210 and one at-bat, you want to hit .320. You have to take it step by step, every pitch is important and make them count.”After the game, the Sox announced that pitcher Zach Stewart will be called up to start Saturday in place of Jake Peavy, whose turn will be pushed back to Sunday. Reliever Brian Bruney was designated for assignment to make room for Stewart.

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    Kane County Cougars suffer loss in 12 innings

    BELOIT, Wis. — For the first time this season, the Kane County Cougars lost a game when leading after eight innings. They fell to 40-1 in those situations after losing 4-3 to the Beloit Snappers in 12 innings on Friday night at Pohlman Field.The Cougars took three out of four in the series and went 4-3 on their seven-game road trip. They lead Clinton for the top playoff spot in the Western Division by 3 games with 30 remaining. The Cougars led 3-2 heading to the bottom of the ninth inning. Chase Boruff retired the first two batters and later had the Snappers down to their final strike when Wang Wei Lin singled to center to score Daniel Santana. The 3-3 deadlock remained until the 12th when Chas Byrne replaced Boruff and got the first two hitters before giving up a single to Lance Ray and a double to Michael Gonzales for the game-ending run.Greg Billo gave up 2 runs — 1 earned — on 3 hits over 6 innings for the Cougars, his sixth quality start in seven outings and the 17th time in 22 outings he gave up less than 2 earned runs.The Cougars’ Angel Franco hit a 2-run homer in the sixth inning and added a solo shot in the eighth.

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    Henry Melton gestures after sacking Dolphins quarterback Tyler Thigpen last season. Melton figures to get much more playing time during the 2011 campaign.

    Bears tackle Melton making an impression

    Training camp is barely a week old, but already Henry Melton has made his presence felt, flashing quickness and the ability to get to the quarterback from the 3-technique tackle spot.Melton seemed out of place playing inside last season because he was listed at just 260 pounds, but in limited snaps he had 2½ sacks, fourth best on the team. This season, the 6-foot-3 Melton is listed at 295 pounds, and he doesn’t appear to have lost any of the quickness that allowed him to play in 25 games at Texas as a running back. He was drafted as a defensive end, where he started 10 games for the Longhorns, but the Bears’ coaching staff quickly identified him as a player who could have a pass-rush presence inside by using his quickness against bigger guards and centers.“I’m not saying he’s not a fit at end,” defensive coordinator Rod Marinelli said. “But what you look for inside is movement and speed. He’s filled out, but he’s got tailback speed. I like guys inside a little bit shorter (because) your natural knee bend is a little bit easier. And he’s an athlete who can bend. It’s about the speed and quickness over a guard because you have to win inside. I want to keep him inside.”Fighting it out: One of the more interesting position battles in camp is at left cornerback, where Tim Jennings unseated Zack Bowman last season after three games. On paper the 6-foot-1, 193-pound Bowman seems to have an advantage over the 5-foot-8, 185-pound Jennings, but the smaller man played with a lot of feistiness and toughness against the run last year, qualities the Bears value in their corners. It’s too soon to predict a winner this year.“That’s what camp’s about,” defensive coordinator Rod Marinelli said. “Camp is a lot of fun in terms of that; for these men, too. If you’re competitor, you love to come into those situations. When you get that type of competition, somebody is going to constantly get better, and your depth is going to get better. So we just let the men go out and work on their stuff and put it on tape. This game is still about just putting it on tape.”One way to go: In his second season as offensive coordinator, Mike Martz “absolutely” expects to see improvement on his side of the ball despite the absence of off-season training.“There are a lot of things that we learned last year, and resolving the offensive line is an issue, getting that kind of stabilized. There’s a lot of positive things going into the season where we would expect to be much better and become a much better football team on offense than what we were last year.”The offense was 30th in total yards last season, 28th in passing yards and 32nd in sacks allowed.Making progress: Last season as a rookie, Northwestern’s Corey Wootton was best remembered for the sack in Minnesota that knocked Brett Favre out of the game and essentially ended his career — at least until the next comeback.That was Wootton’s only sack, as he was inactive in 10 games and saw limited action in six. But it appears the fourth-round draft choice will earn a bigger role this year.“I like what Wootton has done so far in camp,” Rod Marinelli said. “He’s really trimmed himself down and looks quick; looks fast.”Ÿ Follow Bob’s Bears reports via Twitter@BobLeGere and check out our Bear Essentials blog at dailyherald.com.

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    Carlos Quentin hit two home runs and had four RBIs in the White Sox' 5-3 win Friday night.

    Quentin, Buehrle help White Sox snap skid

    Carlos Quentin hit two home runs and had four RBIs, Mark Buehrle was sharp after a rough first inning, and the Chicago White Sox beat the Minnesota Twins 5-3 on Friday night to snap a six-game losing streak.

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    Carlos Marmol notched his 24th save Friday by holding off the Reds in a 4-3 Cubs victory.

    Cubs’ Marmol back to his old self

    Cubs closer Carlos Marmol looks al the way back from his slump. He saved his third game in a row and fifth in six days Friday as the Cubs beat the Reds 4-3.

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    The Bears canceled Friday night’s practice at Soldier Field because of unsafe field conditions.

    Unsafe field causes cancellation; team goes back to Bourbonnais

    Unsafe field conditions caused the Bears to cancel Friday night’s Family Fest at Soldier Field. Fans who paid $8 for tickets will be reimbursed in full.After the announcement, about an hour before the scheduled 7 p.m. start, fans were allowed into the stadium and were offered free food and nonalcoholic beverages. They were also permitted to stay for the fireworks display. Fans who paid $16 for parking were given full refunds as they left.More than 10,000 tickets were sold to the event, which in past years has attracted more than 20,000 fans. The Bears were immediately bused back to their training camp at Olivet Nazarene University in Bourbonnais for a night practice that was closed to fans and the media.According to Chicago Park District general manager Tim LeFevour, the grass playing surface had developed exposed seams because of the recent extreme heat. The field was re-sodded 3.5 weeks ago after the U2 concert and before the Manchester United soccer game against the Chicago Fire. There were no problems with the field during Man U’s victory over the Fire.“It was a miscalculation on our grounds crew’s part,” LeFevour said. “They did not get enough water on the field. Some of the seams opened up.”The Bears host the Buffalo Bills next Saturday night in their preseason opener, but the field is expected to be playable by then.“It’s not an issue we’re concerned with next week,” LeFevour said. “We know it can be corrected. But in the interest of the team tonight it was the right move to send them back to Bourbonnais to practice.”The Bears and the park district did not detect unplayable conditions less than 24 hours before the scheduled start of the practice.However, as the day progressed and the field was not watered, seams widened between the two-ton rolls of sod, creating potentially dangerous conditions.Bears president and CEO Ted Phillips addressed the approximately 1,000 fans who elected to stay inside and wait for the fireworks. Phillips was initially booed halfheartedly. He apologized to the fans and on behalf of coach Lovie Smith and left to a smattering of applause.

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    Tony Campana follows through on what turned into a 2-run inside-the-park home run during the first inning of the Cubs’ 4-3 victory over Cincinnati at Wrigley Field on Friday.

    Cubs’ Campana can run with the best of ’em

    How fast is Cubs outfielder Tony Campana? So fast that others in baseball want to race him. Campana was all the rage Friday with an inside-the-park homer and a double.

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    The Cubs’ Tony Campana, center, heads toward home plate after hitting a 2-run inside-the-park home run that scored Starlin Castro, right. It was the first inside-the-park homer at Wrigley Field since 2001.

    Speed demon Campana produces rare feat

    Backup center fielder Tony Campana stole the show Friday in a 4-3 Cubs victory over the Reds at Wrigley Field. He hit an inside-the-park homer and made a leaping catch at the wall to propel the Cubs to their sixth straight victory.

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    Carlos Zambrano picks up Tony Campana after Campana hit a two-run inside-the-park home run that scored Starlin Castro during the first inning Friday at Wrigley Field.

    Campana helps surging Cubs top Reds

    Tony Campana drove in a pair of runs with an inside-the-park homer and the Chicago Cubs beat the Cincinnati Reds 4-3 on Friday for their sixth consecutive victory. It was the first major league homer for Campana.

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    Fowler part of 4-way tie as Woods falters

    AKRON, Ohio — Rickie Fowler had eight birdies and an eagle to give himself another shot at winning. Adam Scott did well enough to stay in the lead. PGA Tour rookie Keegan Bradley got in on the action late.It seemed as if everyone was in contention Friday at the Bridgestone Invitational.Except for the guy most everyone came to see.On another soft day that was ripe for low scores, Tiger Woods missed a 2-foot putt and didn’t make enough birdies to atone for his short-game mistakes during a 1-over 71 that left him in the middle of the pack.He was only seven shots behind, but had 35 players in front of him at Firestone.“Today was not very good,” Woods said.It was good enough for Scott, except for making the putts he holed in the opening round of this World Golf Championship. He had a 70, which is never bad at Firestone in any condition.After opening with a 62, Scott was at 8-under 132 along with Ryan Moore (66), Fowler (64) and Bradley (65). Jason Day bogeyed his last hole for a 70 and was one shot behind with Martin Laird (67) and Robert Karlsson (65).“The last time I shot 62 was probably a long time ago, so am I going to expect to do it two days in a row?” Scott said. “I don’t think so. But it’s a hard golf course, and if you’re just a little off, you get quite severely penalized. There’s no real secret that it’s not easy to shoot a couple of 62s.”Fowler was all over the place. He made only five pars, and kept his gallery guessing the rest of the time. There were three straight birdies, and a wedge he holed from 110 yards for eagle on No. 3. He followed that with three bogeys and three pars.“A lot of good things came out of today,” said Fowler, who is still searching for his first win. “Building some confidence going into the weekend.”No one appeared to have more fun than Bradley, the nephew of LPGA Hall of Fame player Pat Bradley and a winner this year at the Byron Nelson Championship. With big crowds lingering even after Woods left the course, he could hear plenty of cheers for birdies all around him, and even some for himself as he worked his way to the top of the leader board.“I had Luke Donald behind me, Phil Mickelson a few groups behind me,” Bradley said. “I mean, it’s something that I dream about since I was 2 years old. It’s kind of happening in front of my eyes, which is a weird feeling to describe. But it’s spectacular. I just can’t express how much fun I’m having out there.”His biggest birdie came at No. 3, even though it was only a 12-foot putt.Bradley played a money game with Mickelson on Wednesday, in which Mickelson serves as a mentor until the final holes when the four-time major champion cares only about getting into Bradley’s pocket. Mickelson pointed to a hole location that can be tricky. The putt looks as if it should break right, but it actually moves left.“And sure enough, I had this exact putt he brought me over to,” Bradley said. “I wanted to make it so bad so I could go back and tell him later tonight.”Mickelson was among those who couldn’t keep up with 31 guys who broke par in the second round.He holed out from the 11th fairway for eagle, but followed that with a double bogey on the par-3 12th, and finished with a pair of bogeys for a 73 that put him at even par, eight shots behind. Geoff Ogilvy had a tough time, as well. The former U.S. Open champion was two shots out of the lead and playing the easiest hole at Firestone, the par-5 second, when he four-putted from 35 feet for double bogey, and finished an annoying round with back-to-back bogeys that dropped him back to a 70 and put him at 2-under 138.Lee Westwood, taking mental help from Bob Rotella and putting tips from Dave Stockton, was right in the thick of it until dropping four shots on the last six holes for a 71 that also put him at 138.

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    Edwards says Roush offers best chance at Cup title

    LONG POND, Pa — The one phone call from his boss that meant the most to Carl Edwards wasn’t a pitch to stay at Roush Fenway Racing.Jack Roush simply told his star driver — and the hottest free agent in NASCAR — to make the decision based on what was best for Edwards.“He said those words to me, and that meant the world,” Edwards said Friday at Pocono Raceway. “It meant that I didn’t have the pressure to do something for any reason other than what I thought was best.”In the end, Edwards decided what was best was sticking with the only organization he’s called home in his Cup career. Edwards signed a multi-year contract extension with RFR this week because he believed the resources, sponsors, crew and car give him the best chance to win championships.“Whenever I’d start feeling that pressure start creeping in from the outside I’d think, `OK, let’s get back to the basics here,”’ he said. “Where can I win the most championships? And what would I do if other people’s opinions weren’t a factor?”There were plenty of opinions around the garage from fellow drivers to the media speculating on his future. Greg Biffle, his teammate, intimated Edwards was leaving the organization. Four-time Cup champion Jeff Gordon said lingering contract negotiations were a distraction to Edwards as he chased his first career championship. Edwards enters Sunday’s Sprint Cup race in first place, a spot he’s held in the No. 99 Ford for the majority of the season.“I still think it got them a little bit behind, but this will allow them to get back on track,” Gordon said. “I never considered them a non-threat. Carl’s a great driver and that team’s a very good team. There’s no doubt those talks and that constant barrage of questions is hard to get past until you get settled.”Edwards, who acted as his own agent, said the end of negotiations were a big relief. He kept details private, though he was courted by Joe Gibbs Racing, and insisted money was not an issue. Hard to believe, but Roush said money was never discussed. Edwards had more pressing questions about how the organization is run and what’s ahead for his team.Roush did the equivalent of opening the books, letting Edwards in on the secrets of every nook of the organization.“If Carl had made the decision not to come back, I was going to feel really stupid for having shown him all these things,” Roush said.Edwards refused to say how close he was to signing with another team or how many teams showed interest. Once Edwards was back in the fold, Roush started sponsorship discussions for the No. 99, and he said there’s no shortage of interested suitors. Roush said the company will be “just fine” running four cars.RFR also has Matt Kenseth and David Ragan under contract.Edwards’ contract means other free agents can start seriously considering their options for 2012 and beyond. Clint Bowyer (Richard Childress Racing), Juan Pablo Montoya (Earnhardt Ganassi Racing) and Brian Vickers (Red Bull Racing) are the three top free agents available, and interest is about to pick up. Vickers needed a seat once Red Bull announced it will leave NASCAR at the end of the season. Bowyer said Friday he’s close to re-signing with RCR.“I feel like we’re getting close and we’re working on it, and hopefully we’ll have that done,” Bowyer said.Also affected was JGR driver Joey Logano, who likely would have lost his ride in the No. 20 had Edwards come aboard. JGR star Denny Hamlin made it seem like a deal with Edwards was not as close as it appeared.He asked owner Joe Gibbs to tell him when a deal was close.Gibbs told him, “If it ever got to that point, I would let you know first.”Hamlin never heard a peep.“So I knew that it never really had gotten very far along, I don’t believe,” Hamlin said. “Whether his intentions really were to leave or not, it’s tough to say.”

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    Brad Keselowski won’t let broken ankle stop him

    LONG POND, Pa. — Brad Keselowski’s broken left ankle ballooned to the size of a softball, and he needs a left shoe a size larger than his right one.Stay home? No way. Not only will Keselowski drive Sunday at Pocono Raceway, he says no amount of pain from his broken left ankle will force him out of the No. 2 Dodge.“It’s been easier at times,” he said, sitting outside his transporter.His week got worse during Friday’s second practice session. He blew a tire, spun and had to slam the brakes, putting pressure on his injured ankle. The Dodge was towed to the garage, and Keselowski was left wondering what else could go wrong.“It’s just been one of those weeks, I guess,” he said. The good news for Keselowski was that he had brakes and got the car under control. He wasn’t so lucky on Wednesday when he lost his brakes during a test session and crashed head-on into a wall at Road Atlanta.He slammed a section of wall that did not have an energy-absorbing barrier and data showed he slowed from 155 mph to about 100 mph at time of impact. Five-time Cup champion Jimmie Johnson was at Road Atlanta and posted a picture on Twitter of the crumpled car.“I could tell he was a bit dazed when he got out of the car,” Johnson said. “I spoke to him the night after the wreck and he didn’t remember me being down at the race car with him, so I think he definitely was dazed.” Keselowski later posted several updates on his Twitter page, including two photos that showed a swollen ankle and an abrasion on his foot. “I was pretty sure after I hit the wall that I had broken everything that I could break,” he said. “I was hurting pretty good. I feel pretty decent now. Walking isn’t all that easy, but that’s just the deal.Keselowski won’t run in Saturday’s NASCAR Nationwide race in Iowa. Penske Racing said Sam Hornish Jr. will drive the No. 22 Dodge in Friday’s practices, qualifying and the race. But Keselowski was at Pocono Raceway, trying his best to block out the pain and compete as if it were a normal practice session. He needs his left foot for braking and shifting, and Pocono is a grueling 500-mile race on a 2½-mile track.“I can’t believe he is driving,” driver Clint Bowyer said. “I’m not a doctor, but his ankle looked twice the size of the other one in the picture. I bet he is going to be pretty uncomfortable when he has to mash the brakes in turn one.”Keselowski has good reason for not wanting out. He’s 21st in the standings and trying to earn one of the wild-card berths in the Chase for the Sprint Cup championship. The top two drivers with the most victories in 11th to 20th place earn a wild-card spot in the Chase for the championship. He has a win at Kansas, meaning one more victory would surely catapult him into the title hunt.“This is about the worst time knowing we’re coming up on the Chase, knowing we need another win to get in,” Keselowski said. “There’s no good time, but this is certainly the worst time.”

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    Stenhouse looking for a win at Iowa Speedway

    NEWTON, Iowa — Ricky Stenhouse Jr. is feeling a little frustrated these days, which might seem odd given the year he’s having ins the NASCAR Nationwide Series.Stenhouse leads the point standings, he’s No. 2 on the money list and when the series returns to Iowa Speedway on Saturday night, he’ll be racing on the track where earlier this year he earned his first Nationwide victory.Yet Stenhouse can’t help thinking about what might have been. The 23-year-old from Mississippi held the lead late in three races since that May victory but didn’t win any of them.“After you get that first win, you expect to win a lot more and we haven’t done that yet,” Stenhouse said Friday between practice runs on the .875 mile oval. “So we’ve been disappointed. Then, at the same time, we’ve been running consistently in the top five. That’s what we’ve got to do to win this championship.”His biggest disappointment came last weekend at Lucas Oil Raceway in Indiana. Stenhouse led for 189 of the 204 laps in that race before Brad Keselowski passed him on a late restart and drove away to the victory.Then came more disappointment. After thinking he had finished second, Stenhouse was dropped to third after a video review. Still, he finished high enough to take a three-point lead over Reed Sorenson in the standings.“It’s just frustrating when you don’t cap it off,” Stenhouse said. “But I think with a little bit more experience, a few of those races could have very easily been capped off with a win. I guess that’s part of learning.“This is our second full season running Nationwide. I feel like I’ve still got a lot to learn. I think going through those times of leading late and not winning has built me as a better driver. I think each and every race we’re getting better as a team. So it’s frustrating, but then again it builds us confidence, too.”Keselowski had been scheduled to run here Saturday night but pulled out after breaking his left ankle when he crashed during a testing run in Atlanta on Wednesday. His doctor cleared him to compete in the Sprint Cup race at Pocono Raceway on Sunday, but he decided against trying the weekend double.Keselowski won the first Nationwide race at Iowa Speedway in 2009 and was third here in May.“It’s never good to see one of our competitors get hurt,” Stenhouse said. “After last week, I was wanting to race him here and be battling for the win. I’m sure if he was here, we’d be battling. He’s a really great race car driver. I feel like I’d like to beat him here so we could put last week behind us, but I guess we’ll have to wait for that.”Although it might seem safe to keep things the same after winning, Stenhouse said he can’t afford to do that, so his Roush Fenway Racing crew has put him in a new car for Saturday night’s race. He doesn’t see that as a gamble.“If you have really good race cars and you sit on them, everybody else is making theirs better to keep up with you,” he said. “If you’re not steadily making them better, I don’t think you’re going to be as good as you think you should be.”Sorenson also won’t have the same car he drove here in May, when he finished fourth after leading for 77 laps.“We had a good race car last time,” Sorenson said. “We took what we had on that car, applied it to this one and hopefully we’ll make it a little bit better through practice.”Sorenson and his Turner Motorsports teammates, Justin Allgaier and Jason Leffler, along with Michael Annett will be competing for a $100,000 bonus. The Iowa race is the second of four designated as a Dash 4 Cash race. The top finisher among those four will wins the money.“It’s viable. It’s there. Someone’s going to win it,” Leffler said. “One of us is going to walk away with 100,000.”

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    Wauconda junior Megan Tallman, right, plans to continue her volleyball career at Indiana in 2013.

    Wauconda’s Megan Tallman confident Indiana is right fit

    When Wauconda junior setter Megan Tallman visited Indiana University this summmer, she knew quickly it was the right fit for her. She wasted little time in giving a verbal commitment to the Big Ten school.

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    New Orleans Saints coach Sean Payton, here talking with general manager Mickey Loomis, apparently will have some competition on the offensive line with the signing of former Bears center Olin Kreutz. He’ll compete with Matt Tennat, a fifth-round draft pick from 2010.

    AP source: Saints sign ex-Bear Olin Kreutz

    Former Bears center Olin Kreutz apparently isn't ready to retire. A person familiar with the deal says Kreutz has agreed to contract terms with New Orleans to play for Saints head coach Sean Payton.

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    A day after recording a perfect game against Akron, Chicago Bandits players visited Wrigley Field on Friday to cheer for star pitcher Monica Abbott, who threw out the first pitch before the Cubs-Reds game. From left to right are: No. 11 Shannon Doepking, catcher; No. 2 Tammy Williams, infielder; No. 44 Nikki Nemitz, pitcher; and No. 9 Caitlin Lever, outfielder. The Bandit will play the Akron Racers in the second game of a four-game series tonight at Rosemont Stadium.

    Bandits celebrate perfect game by Monica Abbott

    After flirting with a perfect game all season for the Chicago Bandits, lefty pitcher Monica Abbott got it done Thursday night. Abbott threw the first perfect game ever in Rosemont Stadium as the Bandits defeated the Akron Racers 5-0 in National FastPitch softball action.

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    Record score for Western Am medalist

    Chris Williams shot a record 16-under par for 72 holes en route to winning the stroke play segment of the 109th Western Amateur Thursday at North Shore Country Club in Glenview. The 20-year-old from Moscow, Idaho, is among 16 players who advanced to match play on Friday.

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    White Sox manager Ozzie Guillen walks back to the dugout after removing starting pitcher Philip Humber on Thursday night.

    Sox' Guillen irritated by team's critics

    If you are feeling vindicated now that struggling center fielder Alex Rios is back on the bench and incapable of harming the White Sox, manager Ozzie Guillen sent a message before Thursday night's 7-2 loss. “Rios is going to be playing when I play him,” he said.

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    DuPage track club members star at Junior Olympics

    The DuPage Track Club, led by Lake Park assistant Tom Kaberna, produced the most All-Americans out of Illinois at the USATF National Junior Olympic Track & Field Championships, July 26-31 in Wichita, Kan.

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    Conant’s Smith earns coach of year honors
    John LeuschThe Suburban Umpires Association has named Conant’s CathyAnn Smith the 2011 “Coach of the Year” for the Mid-Suburban League. Smith, a graduate of Schaumburg High School were she pitched for former coach Kay Winkelhake, has been invited to attend the SUA Awards and Banquet dinner to receive the award. Smith, who was assisted by Kelly Wolff, directed the Cougars to their finest season in school history (27-3).They won their first MSL championship since 1974 with a 5-1 victory over defending champion Elk Grove.

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    Rowland shines for CATS Aquatic

    The Libertyville/Vernon Hills-based CATS Aquatic team cheered wildly as Peter Grumhaus (Lake Bluff) earned a ninth-place finish and Junior National-qualifying time of 2:08.97 in the 200 backstroke during the finals of the Speedo Champions Series meet July 23 at the University of Iowa in Iowa City.

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    Sean Murnane

    Murnane gets brief taste of NFL life with Bears

    When the Bears signed non-drafted free agent Sean Murnane last week, the former Carmel Catholic star got the chance to take the field with a childhood hero.

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    Warren Wave makes splash at USSSA World Series

    The Warren Wave 15U travel softball team made another splash. The Wave placed second at the USSSA 15U World Series in Des Moines, Iowa, last Saturday. Last summer, the team won the ASA Nationals at the 14U level in Terre Haute, Ind.

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    Tiger Woods and his caddie Bryon Bell cross the bridge to the third green during the first round of the Bridgestone Invitational on Thursday at Firestone Country Club in Akron, Ohio. Woods shot a 68 in his return after missing several months because of a knee injury.

    All eyes on Tiger Woods as he returns to golf

    Tiger Woods appeared to face a big test Thursday in his return to golf. It was a 3-wood around the trees on the 658-yard 16th hole at Firestone that required him to go at it hard, cut short his back swing to produce the sharp fade, then let the momentum of his motion carry his body forward with an awkward step.

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    Chicago Bears’ Amobi Okoye wipes his eye as he walks on the sideline during NFL football training camp Monday at Olivet Nazarene University in Bourbonnais.

    Bears’ Marinelli looks to blend new Bears with old

    Most of the linemen who did the heavy lifting for Rod Marinelli’s defense last year are back — only Tommie Harris is missing. And there have been some intriguing additions. “Half of our defense have their Ph.D.s in this system,” Marinelli said. “Now we’ve got new guys coming in, just trying to learn it.

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    Reed Johnson greets teammate Carlos Pena on his way to the dugout after scoring on a single by Aramis Ramirez in the eighth inning Thursday night.

    Yes, Cubs win fifth straight game, sweep Pirates

    When the Cubs embarked on their three-city, 10-game road trip, you didn't have to be too hardened of a cynic to think the worst. Could they go 4-6? Oh, easy. How about 3-7? Sure. Worse? That would be tough to do, but these are the Cubs. After losing the first five games of the trip, the Cubs won last five.

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    White Sox catch Yankees at a really bad time

    The Yankees completed a four-game sweep over the reeling White Sox Thursday night with a 7-2 win. In the series, New York outscored the Sox 34-11 and Yankees pitchers didn't issue a walk.

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    White Sox scouting report

    White Sox vs. Minnesota Twins at Target FieldTV: Comcast SportsNet today; WGN Saturday and SundayRadio: WSCR 670-AMPitching matchups: The White Sox’ Mark Buehrle (8-5) vs. Nick Blackburn (7-8) today at 7:10 p.m.; Jake Peavy (4-5) vs. Carl Pavano (6-8) Saturday at 6:10 p.m.; John Danks (4-9) vs. Brian Duensing (8-9) Sunday at 1:10 p.m.At a glance: The White Sox should be happy to hit the road after a miserable homestand. This shapes up as a battle for third place in the AL Central. The Sox have had a terrible time against the Twins lately. They are 1-7 vs. Minnesota this season and have lost 29 of their last 36. Buehrle is 0-1 against the Twins this year despite allowing just 1 earned run in 15 innings over 2 starts. The veteran left-hander has allowed 3 runs or less in 16 straight starts and is 6-3 with a 2.55 ERA over that stretch.Next: Baltimore Orioles, Monday-Thursday at Oriole Park at Camden Yards

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    Cubs scouting report
    Cubs scouting report

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    Brian Fletcher hits homer, drives in 4 for victorious Cougars

    — Brian Fletcher went 4-for-5 with 4 RBI to pace an 11-hit attack as the Kane County Cougars cruised to a 10-4 win over the Beloit Snappers at Pohlman Field on Thursday night. The Cougars are 4-2 on their seven-game road trip and 7-0 in Beloit this season. They hold a 4-game lead for the top playoff spot in the Western Division with 31 games remaining.

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    Bears quarterback Jay Cutler says he has a newfound comfort level with Mike Martz’s offense.

    Bears QB Jay Cutler comfortable with Mike Martz’s system

    Bears QB Jay Cutler feels much more comfortable in his second year in Mike Martz's offense.

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    Huskies have high hopes this season

    Northern Illinois kicked off its bid for the 2011 Mid-American Conference title on Thursday afternoon with an energetic 2.5-hour practice at Huskie Stadium.

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    Top recruit Larkin leaves DePaul

    Prized freshman guard Shane Larkin, citing a medical condition, has left DePaul to return to his Orlando, Fla., home.

Business

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    Dunkin' Donuts eyes Europe, afternoon pick-me-ups

    Dunkin' Brands Group Inc., which reported flat earnings on Wednesday after becoming a public company a week earlier, said it plans to rejuvenate the struggling Baskin-Robbins brand in the U.S. and expand its Dunkin' Donuts chain in Europe.

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    Credit rating agency Standard & Poor's says it has downgraded the United States' credit rating for the first time in the history of the ratings. The credit rating agency says that it is cutting the country's top AAA rating by one notch to AA-plus. The credit agency said late Friday, Aug. 5, 2011 that it is making the move because the deficit reduction plan passed by Congress on Tuesday did not go far enough to stabilize the country's debt situation.

    Politicial blame game on after S&P downgrades US credit rating

    Republicans and Democrats quickly doled out blame to each other for the first-ever downgrade in the nation's sterling credit rating, an expected but unsettling move that further clouds prospects for the recovery of the fragile U.S. economy.

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    Democratic Sen. Barbara Boxer of California, second from right, points to a photo of a control tower being built in Palm Springs, Calif., that suffered some damage while under construction. ngton. The Senate approved legislation Friday ending a two-week partial shutdown of the Federal Aviation Administration, clearing the way for thousands of employees to return to work and hundreds of airport construction projects to resume.

    Dems give way to GOP to end FAA shutdown

    With tens of thousands of jobs, more than $1 billion and their reputations on the line, Senate Democrats gave way Friday to a power play by House Republicans in order to end a partial two-week shutdown of the Federal Aviation Administration. President Barack Obama signed it into law hours later.

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    Pedestrians walk past a Wall Street sign near the New York Stock Exchange on Friday in New York. Fears that the economy might dip back into recession helped send the Dow Jones industrial average down 513 points on Thursday. European leaders are struggling to contain that region's debt problems, prompting comparisons to the 2008 financial crisis. Markets tumbled from Tokyo to London Friday as overseas traders reacted to the selloff.

    Stocks mostly lower after a day of wild swings

    A soothing government report on employment in July eased concerns that the U.S. might slide back into a recession, and the Dow Jones industrial average rose as much as 171 points soon after trading began. But fears that Europe's growing debt crisis might threaten U.S. banks and the fragile economy ruled Friday.

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    Job seekers line up to register as they arrive at a Career Job Fair in Arlington, Va., Thursday.

    Unemployment rate dips, economy adds 117K jobs

    Hiring picked up slightly in July and the unemployment rate dipped to 9.1 percent. The modest improvement may quiet fears of another recession after the worst losses on Wall Street in nearly three years.

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    Valero says Memphis main production units shut after fire

    Valero Energy Corp. shut all main production units at its Memphis refinery after a fire today that may have damaged at least one of two crude units.Bill Day, a company spokesman in San Antonio, declined to say whether other units like a hydrotreater were operating. Main units would include the crude units and catalytic crackers.Day said he doesn’t know why all main production units were stopped. The 25-minute fire was reported in a heater associated with an 80,000-barrel-a-day crude unit, Day said. Valero shut that unit and a nearby 100,000-barrel-a-day crude unit, which will be restarted first.“Because there are two crude units at Memphis, it’s possible that one crude unit could be restarted fairly quickly,” Day said. All workers at the plant were accounted for and no injuries were reported, he said.The refinery has a capacity of 195,000 barrels a day, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. It processes primarily light and sweet crude received through the Capline pipeline system and barges, according to the company’s website.

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    Goldman Sachs sees one-in-three risk of U.S. recession

    Goldman Sachs Group Inc. said today it saw a one-in-three chance of a renewed recession in the U.S. within the next nine months as it cut its growth forecast to 2 percent through the first quarter of 2012, chief economist Jan Hatzius wrote in a note to clients.Goldman now sees growth averaging 1.7 percent this year, from a prior 1.8 percent forecast, Hatzius said. The world’s largest economy will expand 2.1 percent in 2012, down from a previous estimate of 3 percent, he wrote.The U.S. unemployment rate will rise to 9.25 percent by the end of 2012, reflecting the weaker pace of growth, Hatzius said. A worsening of the European debt crisis, failure to extend the U.S. payroll-tax cut beyond 2011 and further increases in unemployment were cited as key risks to the outlook.“Even our new forecast is subject to meaningful downside- risk,” Hatzius wrote. “Increases in the U.S. unemployment rate have historically had a tendency to feed on themselves, and this could happen again.”Goldman expects the Federal Reserve will “provide more guidance” about the future size of its balance sheet at next week’s policy meeting, Hatzius wrote. Goldman anticipates “no rate hikes or changes in the size of the Fed’s balance sheet until 2013 or later,” he wrote.The unemployment rate fell to 9.1 percent in July from 9.2 percent in June, the Labor Department reported today. Payrolls rose by a more-than-forecast 117,000 after a 46,000 increase in June, the report said.The economy grew at a 1.3 percent pace in the second quarter following revised growth of 0.4 percent in the first three months of the year that was less than previously estimated, the Commerce Department reported last week. Consumer spending rose 0.1 percent, the smallest gain since the second quarter of 2009, when the recent recession ended.

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    Uganda bans sugar exports amid shortages

    Uganda banned exports of sugar to neighboring countries and will regulate and control imports of the sweetner amid a shortage in the East African nation, President Yoweri Museveni said in an e-mailed statement from Kampala, the capital, today.

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    Perus’s Castilla says crisis in northern hemisphere, not south

    Peruvian Finance Minister Miguel Castilla said that the economic crisis is in the Northern Hemisphere, not the Southern Hemisphere.Castilla, speaking at a regional meeting of finance officials in Lima today, also said that members of the Unasur bloc will seek to increase trade within the group.To contact the reporter on this story: John Quigley in Lima at

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    Nigeria nationalizes 3 banks in corruption probe

    Nigeria nationalizes 3 banks in corruption probeABUJA, Nigeria (AP) — Financial regulators in Nigeria say they have nationalized three banks that have been embroiled in a corruption scheme that nearly brought down the oil-rich nation’s financial system.In a statement late Friday after markets closed, Finance Minister Yerima Ngama said Nigeria had nationalized Afribank PLC, Bank PHB, and Spring Bank PLC. Ngama said the move would “bring closure (to) the banking crisis that started in 2008 in Nigeria.”Bank officials could not be immediately reached for comment.Central bank governor Lamido Sanusi injected $2.55 billion into the three troubled banks and two others in August 2009 to halt the crisis. Former CEO Sebastian Adigwe of Afribank faces charges that he stole depositors’ money.

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    Italy to balance budget a year early

    ROME (AP) — Italy pledged to work for a constitutional amendment requiring the government to balance its budget, as Rome feverishly tries to assure domestic and foreign investors its finances are sound and calm a nervous market.Finance Minister Giulio Tremonti also told a hastily convened news conference Friday night that Italy, aims to balance its budget in 2013, a year before previously scheduled. Premier Silvio Berlusconi, saying he conferred with world leaders, announced that G-7 finance ministers will meet “within days” of the exploding financial crisis.Berlusconi said he was expecting a phone call later today from President Barack Obama about the global economic woes.Italy’s borrowing costs rose above Spain’s for the first time in more than a year, pushing European leaders to interrupt their vacations and look for a response to deepening fears about the health of the eurozone’s No. 3 economy.At the start of Europe’s debt crisis 21 months ago, Italy was rarely grouped with the weaker members of the single currency zone, such as Greece, Ireland and Portugal. Many in the markets thought Spain, with its 20 percent unemployment rate, was vulnerable.But the emergence of Italy as a potential victim over the past few weeks has highlighted just how vulnerable the eurozone is and how insufficient its anti-crisis measures are.The yield on Italy’s 10-year bond stands at 6.09 percent, ahead of Spain’s equivalent of 6.04 percent — though both are lower than the euro-era highs earlier in the week and markedly below where they were at the start of the day, they’re still not far from the levels that forced Greece, Ireland and Portugal to seek international financial help.Worries that Italy and Spain maybe next in line led German Chancellor Angela Merkel, vacationing in the Italian Alps, and French President Nicolas Sarkozy, on the French Riviera, to take time from their summer holidays for a phone conference on the eurozone crisis. Spanish Prime Minister Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero spoke with Sarkozy and Berlusconi in separate phone conversations Friday.Their options to what a leading EU policymaker described as “incomprehensible” movements in the markets appear limited.Even a better than expected U.S. jobs report Friday failed to ease the pessimism that has gripped investors over the past few weeks.It’s only been two weeks since eurozone leaders agreed to expand the powers of its (euro) 440 billion ($623 billion) rescue fund that helped bail out Greece, Ireland and Portugal. The fund will be able to buy governments bonds and bail out banks, but the new powers will not be in place until parliaments approve the changes in September.Analysts also warn that the fund is currently not big enough to rescue Italy, whose debt amounts to 120 percent of economic output, around double that of Spain. Only Greece has a bigger proportion to service in the eurozone.Markets have put increasing pressure on Italy because of its chronically weak growth and a general lack of confidence in Berlusconi’s ability or willingness to push through politically difficult measures to make the economy more productive.

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    Senate approves bill to end partial FAA shutdown
    Associated PressWASHINGTON — The Senate approved legislation Friday ending a two-week partial shutdown of the Federal Aviation Administration, clearing the way for thousands of employees to return to work and hundreds of airport construction projects to resume.Employing the so-called “unanimous consent” procedure which took less than 30 seconds, two senators were present to approve a House-passed bill extending FAA’s operating authority through mid-September. Democratic Sen. James Webb of Virginia stood up, called up the bill and asked that it be passed. Sen. Ben Cardin, D-Md., the presiding officer, agreed and it was done.Other lawmakers had scattered earlier this week for Congress’ August recess. And Friday’s finishing-business vote was as low key as Congress gets, in marked contrast to the noisy, intemperate and enervating debt-limit battle of recent weeks.Nearly 4,000 furloughed FAA employees can return to work as soon as Monday if President Barack Obama signs the bill before then. The shutdown has cost the government about $400 million in uncollected airline ticket taxes and idled thousands of construction workers.“This impasse was an unnecessary strain on local economies across the country at a time when we can’t allow politics to get in the way of our economic recovery,” Obama said in a statement. “So I’m glad that this stalemate has finally been resolved.” A bipartisan compromise reached Thursday cleared the way for Senate passage of the House bill, which includes a provision eliminating $16.5 million in air service subsidies to 13 rural communities. But the bill also includes language that gives Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood the authority to continue subsidized service to the 13 communities if he decides it’s necessaryRepublicans had insisted on the subsidy cuts as their price for restoring the FAA to full operation.Democrats said they expect the administration to effectively waive or negate the cuts, although that won’t happen right away. That’s because the cuts don’t kick in until existing contracts with airlines for the subsidized service expire. The length of those contracts varies by community.The shutdown began when much of Washington was transfixed by the stalemate over increasing the government’s debt limit. During that time, the FAA furloughed some workers but kept air traffic controllers and most safety inspectors on the job. Forty airport safety inspectors worked without pay, picking up their own travel expenses. Some 70,000 workers on construction-related jobs on airport projects from Palm Springs, Calif., to New York City were idled as the FAA couldn’t pay for the work.But airline passengers in the busy travel season hardly noticed any changes. Airlines continued to work as normal, but they were no longer authorized to collect federal ticket taxes at a rate of $30 million a day. For a few lucky ticket buyers, prices dropped. But for most, nothing changed because airlines raised their base prices to match the tax.Treasury Department officials initially said passengers would likely be eligible for tax refunds if they bought their tickets before July 23 and their travel took place during the shutdown. However, IRS spokeswoman Julianne Breitbiel said Friday that language in the bill approved by the Senate eliminates the need for refunds. She also said the agency has decided not to retroactively seek taxes from passengers who bought tickets during the shutdown or from airlines. As the debt ceiling crisis passed and Congress began to leave town without resolving the standoff, Obama spoke out Wednesday and Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood urged Congress to return to Washington to deal with the issues. Obama expressed dismay that Congress would allow up to $1.2 billion in tax revenue to go out the door — the amount that could have been lost by the time lawmakers would have returned in September.

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    P&G’s 4Q profit rises 15 pct; readies for slowdown

    CINCINNATI — Procter & Gamble Co. plans to seek out new consumers in emerging markets around the globe while giving U.S. and other developed-market households more choices in products and prices as their countries’ economies continue to sputter.The maker of Gillette shavers, Tide detergent and Pamper diapers reported double-digit net income and revenue increases for its fourth quarter with sales gains in countries led by Brazil, India and China. But it gave a cautious forecast for the year ahead because of flat-looking prospects in the United States and other developed countries. P&G’s guidance indicated slowing sales in this quarter, which began July 1.“I don’t think there’s any question that consumers, particularly in developed markets, are under pressure,” Bob McDonald, P&G’s chairman and CEO, told reporters Friday in a conference call.“We’ve been to this movie before,” he said.P&G shares rose $1.57, or 2.6 percent, to $61.15 in afternoon trading. They’ve traded from $59.17 to $67.72 in the past year.The company said it is cutting costs by restructuring management and streamlining operations, but is outspending competitors in research and development of new products and in marketing. The world’s biggest advertiser said it spent $9.3 billion on marketing last year, the second straight year it has set a company record, while investing $2 billion in R&D.P&G also raised prices on products including Pampers diapers, Charmin toilet paper and Cascade dish detergent to offset higher costs for oils, resin and other raw materials. McDonald said the company is putting more focus on offering pricing ranges, including at low price tiers to head off trading down to private label competitors. The aim is to help P&G compete “no matter the price point the consumer wants to spend.”At a Kroger Co. supermarket near downtown Cincinnati, store shelves Friday offered P&G’s line of laundry detergents at a variety of sizes and prices: Cheer 2X concentrated at $13.99 for a 64-load container; Gain at $11.20 for 64-load container, while the top brand Tide was priced at $19.99 for a 96-load container. Private label brands were priced slightly lower, but without the marketing muscle and track record of P&G’s brands.P&G dish cleaning liquids were 20 cents or more per bottle than most competing brands, but shoppers could save $2 by buying two bottles of Downy and also could get Downy enhanced with P&G Olay skin cream ingredients to protect hands while washing dishes.“In this environment, you’ve got to raise prices because of commodity costs to protect margins,” said Jack Russo, an Edward Jones analyst. “You’ve got be careful you’re not alienating consumers. But these guys have great brands, and as they innovate, they emphasize value.” P&G’s growth is coming from overseas, as it goes into new markets and expands its number of products for emerging consumers in places such as Indonesia and Nigeria. P&G says it’s now reaching some 4.4 billion consumers globally, well over half the world’s population.P&G has scored a big hit in India with the Gillette Guard razors that sell for pennies. The company hopes getting men in emerging markets to try its big brand will lead to them trading up to higher-priced Gillette products.Other strong growth came from SK2 cosmetics and Always feminine products in China, Olay skin care in the Philippines, Saudi Arabia and India, and Pantene and Head & Shoulders shampoos in Brazil.P&G expects earnings for the year ahead to be in a range of $4.17 to $4.33 per share, with sales growing 5 to 9 percent. Analysts expect earnings of $4.29 per share on revenue of $87 billion, up 5 percent.In the current quarter, P&G expects earnings per share in a $1 to $1.04 range; analysts were looking for $1.14. P&G also sees sales slowing down in places such as the U.S., Europe, and Japan. It projects organic sales growth of 2 to 4 percent overall, with net sales up 6 to 9 percent.

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    Farmers Insurance announces settlement of class action lawsuit

    Farmers Insurance announced today that it entered into a settlement of a nationwide class action lawsuit, The settlement includes Farmers Insurance Company, Inc., Farmers Insurance Exchange, Truck Insurance Exchange, Fire Insurance Exchange, Mid-Century Insurance Company, Farmers Group, Inc., Illinois Farmers Insurance Company, and certain related entities (collectively, “Farmers”).  The Court preliminarily approved the settlement on June 20, 2011.Plaintiffs alleged that Farmers failed to pay reasonable expenses for necessary medical services related to automobile accidents under Medical Payments (“Med-pay”) and Personal Injury Protection (“PIP”) coverage in automobile policies based on Farmers’ use of certain claim adjustment systems and procedures.  Farmers denies all of Plaintiffs’ claims in the lawsuit.  However, Farmers agreed to resolve the lawsuit to avoid the burden and expense of continued litigation.The Settlement Class includes all persons who submitted claims for payment of medical bills related to an automobile accident under Med-pay or PIP coverage if (a) the claim was adjusted from January 1, 2001 to February 9, 2009 based upon a recommended reduction from Zurich Services Corporation (“ZSC”), (b) the claim was paid at less than the amount billed, and (c) total Med-pay or PIP payments were less than the respective limits of coverage.  The Class also includes medical providers who were assigned the right to assert these claims.

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    Bank of America starts overdraft rebate outreach

    NEW YORK — If you had a Bank of America account with a debit card between January 2001 and May of this year, you may be due some cash.The nation’s largest bank has started contacting customers who may be entitled to a refund. It recently reached a class-action settlement over the way it charged overdraft fees. Most of the other suits are continuing to work their way through federal court in Florida.Bank of America agreed to set up a $410 million fund to settle the lawsuit. The money will be used to pay back customers who were charged overdraft fees as a result of the company’s policy of processing debit card transactions based on the size of the transaction, rather than when the purchases occurred.The bank is one of about three dozen named in a series of class-action lawsuits over the practice of “reordering.” A policy that became widespread in the 2000s, reordering involves deducting purchases from an account starting with the largest dollar amount first. That means a customer may end up paying additional overdraft fees. For instance, someone with an account balance of $95 and who made three purchases in one day, the first for $5, the next for $25 and the last for $75, would be charged two overdraft fees, rather than one.The suits claim that reordering was done to intentionally increase the number of overdraft fees collected. Banks took in about $39 billion in overdraft fees annually before the Federal Reserve put new rules in place last year. Now banks are required to obtain a customer’s written permission before providing overdraft protection. To inform customers that they may be eligible for a refund of some overdraft fees, Bank of America is sending postcards to customers with a brief explanation of the settlement and the address of a website where more information is available. Customers who are part of the class don’t need to do anything to receive a payment or account credit. They will automatically receive their money if the court approves the settlement at a hearing scheduled for Nov. 7.Up to 30 percent of the $410 million may go to cover attorneys’ fees, costs and expenses, if the court approves. However, any customers who do not want to be part of the settlement must act by Oct. 3 to exclude themselves. That would allow them to go forward with other legal action on their own.

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    Oil falls as investors focus on weak economy

    Oil dropped nearly 2 percent Friday as investors shrugged off U.S. job gains and focused on lingering concerns about the global economy.

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    U.S. stock futures fall as world markets plunge

    Don't look away for too long. You might miss a market rally. Or a plunge. The Dow Jones industrial average is up 80 points after being down as many as 245 points on Friday. It had been up by as many as 171 points after a solid jobs report in the morning.

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    Chicago Freight Car Leasing names Cleator vice president of sales and marketing
    Chicago Freight Car Leasing Co. named Robert “Bob” Cleator as vice president of sales and marketing.

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    Addus HomeCare reports 2Q growth
    Addus HomeCare reported total net service revenues grew 1.6 percent to $68.3 million during the second quarter of 2011, with comparable growth rates in both the Home & Community and Home Health Divisions.

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    A.M. Castle executive retires
    A.M. Castle announced the retirement of the president of Castle Metals and Castle Metal Plates.

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    Elgin group fights to repeal business license

    A small but vocal political group, Elgin OCTAVE, formed shortly after the April election with its core mission aimed at fiscal responsibility. Over the past few months its members have used email, direct outreach and Elgin City Council meetings as platforms for their message, one piece of which is to advocate elimination of the Elgin business license. City officials don't see that happening.

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    Postcard image of the history Hotel Markham in Gulfport, Mississippi.

    Gulfport votes to take over decaying 1920s hotel

    Gulfport's City Council has voted to take ownership of a closed, historic hotel that needs major repairs, although a current owner says that effort will be fought. The Markham hotel was built in the 1920s. In later years it was used for office space but now officials describe it as a blighted home for vagrants and rodents.

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    Elk Grove Village Mayor Craig Johnson

    Elk Grove Village marketing itself through book

    Elk Grove Village is trying to market itself as a business-friendly town by publishing a community guide dubbed “The Elk Grove Book.” The guide, which will be available in print and online, will chronicle the community's achievements and showcase its business resources.

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    The U. S. Postal Service creed on the exterior of the James A. Farley post office building in New York.

    U.S. Postal Service posts $3.1 billion loss for third quarter

    The U.S. Postal Service, which predicts it may run out of cash in September, had a $3.1 billion loss in its third quarter, Chief Financial Officer Joseph Corbett said.Revenue was $15.8 billion in the three months ended June 30, Corbett said today in Washington.

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    Navistar closing Ind. plant, shifts work in state

    Navistar International plans to shift production work from an eastern Indiana factory it is closing to other plants in the state.

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    The lingerie retailer Frederick's of Hollywood, has chosen Abu Dhabi for the launch of its first international store.

    In Abu Dhabi, lingerie reflects UAE's retail pull

    It could have picked London or Hong Kong. Instead, the lingerie retailer that styles itself "the original sex symbol" chose the buttoned-down sheikdom of Abu Dhabi for the launch of its first international store.

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    Viacom fiscal 3Q earnings grow 37 percent

    Viacom Inc., the owner of MTV, Comedy Central and Paramount Pictures, said Friday that its net income increased 37 percent in the latest quarter, thanks to growing advertising sales and higher fees from cable TV and other companies that carry its channels.

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    Oil near $86 as outlook for crude demand dims

    Oil prices extended losses to near $86 a barrel on Friday amid fears that a slowing global economy will weaken demand for crude, but recovered from earlier lows on reports of an explosion at a pipeline in Iran.

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    Fannie Mae 2Q loss widens, seeks to modify loans

    Government-controlled mortgage company Fannie Mae says its second-quarter loss attributable to shareholders widened as it continues to seek out loan modifications to help lower defaults amid the ongoing difficulties in the housing and mortgage markets.

Life & Entertainment

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    McDonalds Woods forest preserve near The Preserves in Lindenhurst.

    Model profile: Preserves at McDonald Woods

    The Preserves at McDonald Woods features a private enclave of 28 luxury homes adjoining 16 acres of pristine nature preserve.

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    Fundraiser to aid Ronald McDonald House
    The Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage Lombard Office is holding a fundraising noncompetitive 5K run-walk for Ronald McDonald House Charities of Chicagoland and Northwest Indiana on Sunday, Sept. 18, at Madison Meadow Park in Lombard.

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    Fundraiser to benefit food pantries
    On Aug. 28, Baird & Warner of Crystal Lake will be holding its third annual Baird & Warner Charity Motorcycle Ride benefiting The Food Pantries of Lake In The Hills, Algonquin, Carpentersville and Crystal Lake.

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    About Real Estate: Average closing costs on the rise

    A new study says that closing costs have climbed an average 8.8 percent in the past year, leaving some buyers scrambling for extra cash before their purchase can be completed.

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    The nation’s housing: Lifeline for those underwater

    If you give millions of seriously underwater homeowners a new equity position in their properties by reducing their principal mortgage debt, will they keep paying on their loans and avoid foreclosure?

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    In this undated TV image originally released by CBS, Lucille Ball is shown in a scene from her comedy series, "I Love Lucy." Ball, who died on April 26, 1989, would have celebrated her 100th birthday on Saturday.

    We still love Lucy, who would be 100 on Saturday

    We loved Lucy and we still do. On the 100th anniversary of her birth Saturday and 60 years since "I Love Lucy" first aired, Lucille Ball's legacy remains remarkable — and her talent remarkably fresh and watchable.

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    In this undated TV image originally released by CBS, Lucille Ball is shown in a scene from her comedy series, "I Love Lucy." Ball, who died on April 26, 1989, would have celebrated her 100th birthday on Saturday.

    We still love Lucy, who would be 100 on Saturday

    We loved Lucy and we still do. On the 100th anniversary of her birth Saturday and 60 years since "I Love Lucy" first aired, Lucille Ball's legacy remains remarkable — and her talent remarkably fresh and watchable.

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    Andy Serkis, who plays Caesar the chimp in “Rise of the Planet of the Apes,” says that he loves working with performance-capture technology.

    Serkis go-to guy for performance-capture

    When the filmmakers behind “Rise of the Planet of the Apes” settled on virtual simians rather than people in monkey suits for their lower primates, their first casting task became obvious: get Andy Serkis.

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    Jason Sechrist, John Gourley, Ryan Neighbors and Zach Carothers are touring in support of Portugal. The Man's new album.

    Portugal. The Man: From Alaska to rock stardom

    John Gourley, lead singer of Portugal. The Man, has one heck of a back story. He grew up in Alaska, the son of adventurous homesteaders and Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race veterans with a lifestyle that in no way prepared him for the rest of the world. “It's pretty bizarre, right — that a band actually came out of there?”

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    Gallery 63 owner Paul Brown will be selling a wide selection of quirky items when “Auction Kings” returns to Discovery for its second season.

    ‘Auction Kings' continues its reign on Discovery

    “Auction Kings,” the hit Discovery Channel reality series, starts its sophomore season on Tuesday, Aug. 9. Tapping into America's growing fascination with bidding and selling, especially with the kind of quirky and distinctive items gallery owner Paul Brown specializes in, the show was an instant success when it premiered last October.

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    Former California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger is beginning to make more public appearances following disclosures of his split with his wife Maria Shriver.

    Schwarzenegger inches back after child disclosure

    Arnold Schwarzenegger is making a comeback. The former California governor on Thursday made his first speech in the state since confirming in May that he fathered an out-of-wedlock son, the latest sign he's gradually maneuvering back into the public eye.

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    Any variety of fresh figs will work in this easy sorbet recipe.

    Fresh fig sorbet

    If you've been a reader of this column or our Kitchen Scoop blog, you know I adore figs. My grandmother had a row of tree-sized fig bushes in her backyard, and my brother and I would sit under them for hours, eating our fill of fresh figs through the summer months.California figs start producing in May and some varieties go all the way to December.

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    Actor Rowan Atkinson was released from a U.K. hospital Friday after suffering minor injuries in a car accident late Thursday.

    TV's Mr. Bean leaves U.K. hospital after car crash

    "Mr. Bean" actor Rowan Atkinson, whose character is known for hapless driving in the television shows and films, left a hospital Friday after being treated for minor injuries following a sports car crash late Thursday in southern England.

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    Any variety of fresh figs will work in this easy sorbet recipe.

    Fresh Fig Sorbet
    desperation dinners fig sorbet

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    Belgium beer edges into innovation

    The syrupy liquid was 10 percent alcohol and combined the dried-fruit flavors of a quadruple, a traditional Belgian abbey ale, with the roasted-coffee notes common in American stouts. I began to understand why the beer geeks who frequent the influential beer site RateBeer.com rank 13 Struise beers among the 50 best in Belgium

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    Sarah Michelle Gellar answers questions with fellow “Ringer” cast members Kristoffer Polaha, from left, Nestor Carbonell and Ioan Gruffudd at the CW Showtime summer press tour in Beverly Hills, Calif., Thursday.

    Gellar plans return to axed soap

    BEVERLY HILLS, Calif. — Sarah Michelle Gellar is headed for a new series on the CW network, but she says she'll find time to return to “All My Children.”Gellar confirmed Thursday that she'll make a farewell appearance on the canceled soap, where she played Kendall Hart from 1993 to 1995, and won a daytime Emmy award. “Children” will disappear from ABC on Sept. 23, ending a four-decade run.“I just wanted to be part of it,” Gellar told reporters gathered for the Television Critics Association's press tour. She said she has no idea what part she will play in her one-day guest shot.The former “Buffy the Vampire Slayer” star was on hand to discuss her new series, “Ringer,” where she plays a woman in trouble who impersonates her twin sister. “Ringers” premieres Sept. 13 on the CW.

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    After 45 years Jerry Lewis 85 will no longer be appearing on the Muscular Dystrophy Association's Labor Day telethon.

    Jerry Lewis, MDA mum on comedian's exit

    For decades, Jerry Lewis has played the key role in the Muscular Dystrophy Association's annual telethon, helping to raise more than $1 billion. Now the two sides are parting ways, but no one is explaining why.

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    Jason Bateman stars in “Horrible Bosses,” as well as the upcoming comedy “The Change-Up.”

    Jason Bateman a king of comedy this summer

    In “Horrible Bosses” and “The Change-Up,” which opens Friday, Jason Bateman plays a hardworking guy who loves his job but yearns for something new. In real life, Bateman is an actor with three decades of experience who loved starring in two fun summer comedies but really longs to direct.

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    Theater events: Maniscalco headlines Zanies Saturday

    Northern Illinois University graduate Sebastian Maniscalco headlines Zanies St. Charles club Saturday. A veteran of “The Tonight Show” and “The Late Show With Craig Ferguson,” Maniscalco co-starred in Vince Vaughn’s 2006 documentary, “Wild West Comedy Show: 30 Days Hollywood to the Heartland.”

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    Book notes: Brad Thor to sign books in Gurnee

    New York Times bestselling author Brad Thor discusses and signs copies of his newest title "Full Black" on Tuesday, Aug. 9, at the Warren Township Senior Center in Gurnee.

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    Beatles fans can explore 15 ballrooms jam-packed with Beatles-related activities at The Fest for Beatles Fans 2011 at the Hyatt Regency O'Hare in Rosemont all weekend.

    Weekend picks: Fab Four fest hits Rosemont

    Beatles fans and vendors from across the globe come together this weekend for The Fest for Beatles Fans 2011 at the Hyatt Regency O'Hare in Rosemont. Events include a Battle of the Beatles Bands, a marketplace of Beatles items, photos, art exhibits and more.

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    Sgt. Gerry Boyle (Brendan Gleeson) has his hands full in "The Guard."

    Foul-mouthed Gleeson a delight in ‘The Guard’

    Sgt. Gerry Boyle, Brendan Gleeson’s brilliantly sardonic Irish police officer of “The Guard,” describes himself as “the last of the independents.” And, indeed, he maintains that independence throughout this fun Irish twist on the police buddy pic.

Discuss

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    Limit p-card use, ensure transparency

    A Daily Herald editorial says local governments should use procurement cards only under a firm policy that spells out oversight and restrictions.

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    Unmet needs of a ‘model’ minority

    Columnist Esther Cepeda: Researchers are now coming to the conclusion that Asian-Americans and Pacific Islanders also have education challenges that deserve attention not the least of which is realizing they are not all academic superstars.

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    Praying for the right (or left) result

    Both liberals and conservatives claim to pray to the same God, but for different results. Abraham Lincoln noted this conflict in his Second Inaugural Address: “Both read the same Bible and pray to the same God; and each invokes His aid against the other. ... The prayers of both could not be answered.”

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    Here’s one vote for citizen of the year
    On July 28 at 1:30 a.m., some of the streets of Carol Stream looked like a war zone. Some have claimed a tornado went through the area. At 7 a.m. I was ambling down my driveway to assess our big broken tree limbs and to get the morning paper when a car pulled up to the curb.

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    A way to make video poker palatable
    After some thought I have come up with a palatable way of implementing video poker. All winnings would be subject to the individual income tax.

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    Obama’s the one who should be sued
    I propose suing President Obama for adding $2 trillion dollars to our national debt is just two years. Now there’s a headline.

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    Why keep giving up our freedoms?
    President Obama is pressuring America to agree to the United Nations global ban on concealed weapons. Should we jump on the bandwagon, surrendering more and more of our freedoms as a sovereign nation?

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    Companies should think about employees
    An Antioch letter to the editor: Attention CEOs, if you actually read the editorial page. At what cost!?

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    Straights should fear loss of rights
    A Libertyville letter to the editor: Whether one is straight or gay, the civil right to marry is not a “special” right, it is a civil right.

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    Reasons the education system is broken
    Teachers and administrators cheat and get rewarded, incompetent educators get separated and get big separation packages, teachers and unions want more money and benefits, real-estate taxes are soaring sky high, and the education process is going down the tubes.

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    More casinos would create more addicts
    Bringing in more slots will turn more residents into addicts by making gambling more accessible. If it happens to someone you love, you will also discover how frustrating it feels when the state won’t help the addicts they’ve helped to create.

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    If you don’t vote, it’s all your fault
    Letter to the Editor: We all contributed to our current sorry financial situation by not paying attention and not voting for the right people when we have the opportunity. Thousands of our servicemen and women gave their lives so you could live in a free society and vote for the candidate of your choice. When you do not use that right, you insult their service and sacrifice.

  •  

    One way to create term limits
    Letter to the Editor: Vote against all incumbents all of the time and we can at least give them our own term limits. We all talk about what’s wrong with our government and yet nobody does anything about it. If you are complaining and do not vote you have no room to complain.

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