Daily Archive : Friday October 26, 2012


    Laura Penosky of Wheaton casts her early ballot Monday at the DuPage County government building in Wheaton with her children Daniel, 9, Liberty, 11, Patrick, 7, and Dawn, 5, by her side. Penosky’s 21-year-old daughter, Lydia, voted for the first time at another booth.

    Poll Vault: Will you vote early?

    Thousands have taken advantage of early voting. What about you? Do you want to avoid the Election Day rush and get it out of the way?

    Volunteers for Operation Christmas Child move shoe box gifts containing supplies for needy children at the collections center at Crossroads Church in Grayslake. (Photo taken by Volunteer Area Coordinator Connie Pfeifer)

    Operation Christmas Child sets November collection dates

    While most people in the U.S. are preparing for holiday activities, Lake County volunteers with Operation Christmas Child—the world's largest Christmas project of its kind — are filling shoe box gifts with toys, school supplies and hygiene items for needy children overseas.

    Gary Grasso

    Mayor says he won’t be swayed by DuPage dual-office vote

    A sitting mayor who hopes to simultaneously serve on the DuPage County Board says he won't be swayed by the results of a countywide ballot question about whether politicians should be able to hold multiple elected offices. "The issue is whether elected office holders should be in a position to get double pensions and double benefits," Grasso said.

    Red flags fly from a lifeguard station as Hurricane Sandy passes offshore to the east, Friday, Oct. 26, 2012, in Miami Beach, Fla. Hurricane Sandy left at least 21 people dead as it moved through the Caribbean, following a path that could see it blend with a winter storm and reach the U.S. East Coast as a super-storm next week.

    Amid dire forecast, Sandy a hurricane again

    Douglas Jumper choked up as he described the long, slow recovery in his central Pennsylvania town from last year's historic flooding caused by Hurricane Irene and the remnants of Tropical Storm Lee — and contemplated the possibility of yet more damage from an approaching storm. "I'm tired. I am tired," Jumper, who turned 58 on Saturday, said through tears. "We don't need this again."

    Barbra Streisand performed Friday night at the United Center in Chicago. The concert included a tribute to late composer Marvin Hamlisch and a duet with her son, Jason Gould.

    Streisand's voice proves ageless and evergreen

    Barbra Streisand needs no extraneous effects — no outrageous visuals, no elaborate staging, no gyrating dancers. And no pyrotechnics, save for her still-lush vocals that highlighted her concert Friday night at Chicago's United Center.


    Geneva teachers give their strike notice

    The Geneva Education Association gave a 10-day notice of intent to strike to the Geneva school district. Earlier in the day, the Geneva school board made public its "final offer," which calls for freezing salaries for at least the first year of a three-year contract.


    Yorkville death investigation continues

    Yorkville police continue to probe the deaths of a 35-year-old man and his 4-year-old son who were found inside their garage this week. "We were kind of hoping the coroner's office could give us something today," Police Chief Rich Hart said. "We just wanna be careful."

    Steven Mandell, then known as Steven Manning, in an undated Illinois Department of Corrections photo.

    Buffalo Grove man arrested after FBI thwarts plot

    Two former police officers have been charged with extortion after federal authorities say their plan to kidnap, extort and murder an area landlord was thwarted. One of the men, 61-year-old Steven Mandell, is a former Chicago police officer who lives in Buffalo Grove. Federal investigators believe the men planned to take their targeted victim to an office building on Chicago's Northwest Side that...

    Republican presidential candidate and former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney holds a football Friday on the tarmac of Akron-Canton Regional Airport in Akron, Ohio.

    Electoral, popular vote split possible

    Most polls at this moment suggest GOP nominee Mitt Romney is in the lead nationally, but surveys in the nine or so swing states are registering a narrow advantage for President Barack Obama.So here’s a prospect worth contemplating: What if Romney carries the popular vote, but Obama regains the presidency by winning 270 votes or more in the electoral college?

    Authorities found more than $1 million worth of marijuana that was part of a “sophisticated” growing operation at a Chicago home. Police say they were led to the discovery after they arrested the homeowner on separate drug charges in Naperville Thursday.

    Naperville drug arrest leads to $1 million in pot

    The arrest of a man on drug charges in Naperville this week led to the discovery of more than $1 million in homegrown marijuana at the man's Chicago residence, police said Friday. A search warrant executed later at the suspect's house in Chicago uncovered a "sophisticated" marijuana growing operation, authorities said.


    In change of position, Quinn to allow prison tours

    Gov. Pat Quinn on Friday appeared to be backing away from his position that visits by reporters to Illinois prisons constitute a security risk. Illinois' Department of Corrections released a statement saying officials are working to schedule media tours of prisons.

    Associated Press/Sept. 4, 2012 Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid of Nevada addresses the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte, N.C. Troopers say Reid has been taken to the hospital after what appears to be a rear-end crash on an interstate through Las Vegas.

    Senate Majority Leader Reid leaves hospital

    Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid was discharged from the hospital less than three hours after an apparent rear-end crash Friday afternoon on a Las Vegas freeway, a hospital spokeswoman said.


    Hartstein backing Mathias
    Former Buffalo Grove mayor Elliott Hartstein on Friday endorsed Republican state Rep. Sid Mathias in the 59th House District, over Democratic state Rep. Carol Sente. Hartstein, a Democrat, said it is unfortunate that Sente and Mathias were pitted against each other in the Democratic remap.

    Associated Press/Oct. 9, 2012 Laboratory technician Ruth Rutledge packages cerebrospinal fluid of three confirmed meningitis cases in Minnesota to send to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta for further testing.

    Health officials: Pharmacy linked to outbreak knew of mold contamination

    The extensive contamination and problems with sterile processing documented in the FDA report go beyond what Massachusetts officials had described in a report Tuesday.

    William Christopher Pettry

    Bears, Kristof’s to scare patrons to help out Lake Villa’s Pettry family

    The Chicago Bears strike fear in opponents on the football field, but some of them are going to try to bring that fear to Lake County in the name of charity. At least nine players — and possibly as many as 14 — will work Monday night as actors at the Realm of Terror Haunted House in Round Lake Beach to raise money for the family of William Christopher Pettry of Lake Villa Township.

    A truck travels along the stretch of gravel road near La Joya, Texas, Friday where a sharpshooter was believed responsible for killing two people in a truck and wounding a third after firing from a Texas Department of Public Safety helicopter.

    Trooper who killed two from helicopter trying to disable pickup

    A report presented Thursday to the United Nations by the American Civil Liberties Union said shootings and excessive force by Customs and Border Protection agents on the border have left at least 20 individuals dead or seriously hurt since January 2010.

    Associated Press A woman looks at a memorial Friday outside the apartment building where the two children were found stabbed to death.

    Parents shaken as nanny accused of killing kids

    There are tens of thousands of nannies working in New York City, but reports of serious violence by caregivers against children are exceedingly rare. Parents are accused of killing their own children with far more frequency.


    Ill. comptroller to help Hoffman Estates with collecting debt

    Hoffman Estates will soon be getting help from the Office of the Illinois Comptroller in collecting debt, such as ambulance fees and code enforcement fines. The village board approved an intergovernmental agreement with the office this week.


    Chicago men charged with holding up Streamwood Aldi

    A Cook County judge ordered two Chicago men held on bonds of $500,000 and $1 million respectively and issued a no bail arrest warrant for a third after police charged the three with the armed robbery of a Streamwood Aldi. Judge Jill Cerone Marisie set bail at $500,000 for Derrick Shelby and $1 million for Joseph Bobbittwho is at St. Alexius Medical Center in Hoffman Estates on a non-related...

    Authorities say this man in a hooded sweatshirt and baseball cap robbed a TCF Bank in Rolling Meadows on Friday afternoon.

    Rolling Meadows bank robbed

    Authorities are looking for a man who robbed a TCF Bank in Rolling Meadows on Friday afternoon. The FBI said the man took an undetermined amount of cash from the bank at 1415 Algonquin Road just before 3 p.m.


    Prospect Heights area sewer district seeks more funds

    Years ago, officials of the Old Town Sanitary District decided to spend down their reserve and decreased taxes. Now, they are in the position of asking voters to allow for an increase. But what they really want is to disband the body.

    Democrat Deb Conroy, left, opposes Republican Daniel Kordik in the race for the 46th State House District.

    Kordik defends survey response, 2005 order of protection

    An order of protection against Daniel Kordik, a Republican candidate for Illinois House, is raising questions after he denied in a candidate survey having an restraining order against him.

    The possible sale of the Central Lake YMCA building at 700 Lakeview Parkway in Vernon Hills remains in negotiation.

    Potential purchase of YMCA in Vernon Hills nears as counteroffer considered

    Talks continue in the potential sale of YMCA facilities in Vernon Hills. Village and park district officials spent more than 2 1/2 hours in closed session Thursday night in give and take over an initial offer of $1.4 million made earlier in the week. "Everyone is optimistic these negotiations will continue and ultimately be successful," said Anne O'Connell, YMCA spokeswoman.


    Pianist Eric Himy to perform Sunday

    The Northwest Suburban Community Concert Association and District 214 Community Education will present classical pianist Eric Himy at 3 p.m. Sunday Oct. 28.


    Orchestra begins season with Maine West concert

    The award-winning Northwest Symphony Orchestra will present the first concert in its 61st season - and the beginning of Paul Vermel's last season at the podium - 3:30 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 18, in the Theatre for the Performing Arts at Maine West High School, 1755 S. Wolf Road, Des Plaines.


    Lake County trick-or-treat hours
    Not sure when to take your little ghost or goblin out trick-or-treating? Here's a listing of Halloween trick-or-treat hours in Lake County.


    Streamwood High School presents ‘Break a Leg”

    Do you like to laugh? Do you want your funny bone tickled? Then "Break A Leg" is the play to see. Streamwood High School will be performing the comedy "Break A Leg" on Thursday, Nov. 1; Friday, Nov. 2; and Saturday, Nov. 3. All shows begin at 7 p.m. Tickets are $5 and can be ordered prior to performance dates or purchased at the door.


    Halloween programs for adults at Schaumburg library

    Halloween history and ghost stories will be featured in upcoming programs at the Schaumburg Township District Library, 130 S. Roselle Road in Schaumburg. Anyone planning to attend must register by calling the library or calling (847) 923-3347.

    Naperville Police Chief Robert Marshall

    Board to decide if Naperville police chief keeps pension

    Naperville Police Chief Robert Marshall is in danger of seeing his income cut in half, at least for a few years.Naperville's five-member police pension board will decide, during a specially-called Tuesday meeting, whether Marshall will be allowed to continue receiving pension payouts from his 28 years as a police officer before he retired in 2005.

    The renovated Riverwalk Gateway between Fredenhagen Park and North Central College’s athletic complex will be dedicated at 1 p.m.

    Naperville’s Riverwalk Gateway to be dedicated

    North Central College Saturday will celebrate it's homecoming with a new entryway to campus. College, Naperville and Naperville Park District officials will dedicate the Riverwalk Gateway at 1 p.m. Saturday, just north of Benedetti-Wehrli Stadium, 455 S. Brainard St. The ceremony will be followed by the 2 p.m. kickoff of the homecoming football game vs. Illinois Wesleyan University..

    Kevin Rehberg

    Carpentersville brings on new trustee

    Carpentersville has a new trustee. Kevin Rehberg, 38, has been appointed to fill a trustee vacancy left by Doug Marks, who moved out of Carpentersville to find a job in Arizona. There were 2½ years left on Marks' term and Rehberg will serve at least six months on the board.

    Congressman Joe Walsh reaffirms his pro-life stance without exception during a news conference at a warehouse in Elk Grove Village last Friday afternoon.

    Walsh seeks to turn attention from abortion to economy

    Congressman Joe Walsh, who has come under fire for his recent statements about abortions being medically unnecessary, Friday holds a news conference in Bloomingdale with pro-choice and pro-life women leaders from the 8th Congressional district.


    Joliet would vet firm behind immigrant detention center

    A plan to build a federal detention center in the Chicago area to house illegal immigrants facing deportation is again under consideration after a previous attempt was blocked by intense opposition from activists.


    Realtors raise money for homeless D211 students for second year

    Realtors Against Homelessness is hosting its second annual fundraiser next Thursday, Nov. 1, for the increasing number of homeless students in District 211. The group raised $13,000 last year for the district's more than 150 homeless students."People really responded in a very positive way and the event was really a lot of fun," said Cindy Eich, a real estate agent for RE/MAX at Home.

    Harry Hitzeman/hhitzeman@dailyherald.com ¬ Authorities remove crime scene tape from a building in the 100 block of South River Road in North Aurora where police say two men were shot Tuesday morning during a home invasion of a second-floor apartment. One man was shot in the arm and the other in the chest and taken to Mercy Provena Medical Center in Aurora, police said.

    3 face drug charges after North Aurora shooting

    Two North Aurora men who were shot earlier this month in an apparent drug related home invasion now face felony drug charges themselves after authorities searched their apartment and found drug paraphernalia, marijuana, heroin and firearms.

    Bloomberg News file photo Conrad Black, who resigned as CEO of Hollinger International Inc., signs a copy of his book “Franklin Delano Roosevelt: Champion of Freedom” at a bookstore in Toronto, Canada, in 2003.

    Ex-media mogul Black defiant on satire show

    LONDON — Former media mogul Conrad Black has appeared on a British satirical show, defying the program’s mockery of his convictions in the U.S. and claiming innocence.


    MCC to study $42 million health sciences center

    McHenry County College is moving forward with plans to look at the feasibility of a public-private partnership to build a $42 million health sciences center. The board unanimously voted Thursday to hire Power Wellness Management, of Addison, to conduct a $50,000 study.


    Police reports
    Lynette D. Montgomery, 47, of the 300 block of Kathleen Drive in Elgin, was accused Wednesday of slicing another woman's hands and neck with a knife, police said. According to reports, Montgomery knocked on a door in her house to look for the woman. When the woman walked outside, Montgomery attacked her by slicing her neck with a knife, police said. The woman also sustained defensive wounds to...


    VHHS to stage ‘Into the Woods’:

    As he prepares for returement, Vernon Hills High School Fine Arts Director Frank Lestina will stage his final student musical this weekend.


    Tri-Cities police reports
    Tri blotter

    Bloomberg News Chevrolet Silverado trucks sit on the lot at Bud Mills Chevrolet auto dealership Friday in Moline, Ill. The U.S. Census Bureau will release figures on domestic auto sales on Nov. 1.

    Toyota widens global sales lead over GM

    Toyota, which makes the Prius hybrid, Camry sedan and Lexus luxury models, had planned to sell 1 million vehicles in China this year. But the company no longer expects to reach that number.


    Chiefs urge caution when burning:

    Lake County fire chiefs urge residents to use extreme caution and follow the rules this fall when using outdoor fire pits and open burning landscape waste. Visit www.lakecountyfirechiefs.org.


    K-9 Rescue hosts holiday party:

    Our House of Hope K-9 Rescue hosts its annual holiday shopping party from 1 to 4 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 4, at the Adler Park — Bob Davis Lodge (behind the pool), 1500 Milwaukee Ave., Libertyville.


    Court reinstates white supremacist’s conviction

    A white supremacist solicited violence against a juror by revealing his personal details online, an appellate court in Chicago ruled Friday, overturning a lower court’s decision that tossed the neo-Nazi’s conviction on the grounds that his posts were protected by the First Amendment.


    CLC faculty art exhibit:

    A huge variety of art by 22 College of Lake County art faculty will be on display in the Robert T. Wright Community Gallery of Art at CLC. An opening reception will be held from 7 to 9 p.m. on Friday, Nov. 9.

    Sen. Dick Durbin has lunch with representatives from DuPage County at Bloomingdale Golf Course in this file photo from 2004.

    Senators call on FDA to act on energy drinks

    NEW YORK — Two U.S. senators on Friday again called on federal regulators to close what they say are loopholes that allow energy-drink makers to sell products with additives and high levels of caffeine that the lawmakers say have not been proven safe.

    An Orbital Sciences crew works to secure the first stage of the Antares rocket on the launch pad at Wallops Island, Va. on Friday, in advance of Hurricane Sandy.

    Refineries in path of ‘Frankenstorm’

    Hurricane Sandy, which may become the worst storm to hit the U.S. East Coast in 100 years, may slow a decline in gasoline prices just weeks before the presidential election.


    Gilberts woman accused of stealing $3 million to gamble

    Dora Asmussen, 52, of Gilberts, a former executive with Burling Bank of Chicago, is accused of stealing more than $3 million over 15 years, and using the money primarily to gamble, authorities said. Asmussen was charged with three counts of bank fraud that occurred from approximately 1997 to August 2012, the U.S. Attorney's office said.


    Three injured in Bartlett car crash

    Three men were injured during an early morning car crash in Bartlett on Friday, according to Bartlett police. The accident occurred around 4 a.m. near Route 20 and Naperville Road. A van traveling east on Route 20 collided into a vehicle traveling west on Route 20 that was attempting to turn south onto Naperville Road.


    Fire destroys house near Bloomingdale

    No one was injured in a fire Thursday night that destroyed a large house in an unincorporated area near Bloomingdale, authorities said. Bloomingdale Fire Protection District Chief Mike McNamara said neighbors reported the blaze around 8:30 p.m. at the rear of the large home on the 100 block of Merganser Lane near the Mallard Lake Forest Preserve. Firefighters arrived to find "heavy, heavy fire at...

    Alvin Santiago

    Cary man accused of shaking baby girl

    An unlicensed day care worker from Cary is accused of shaking a 3-month-old McHenry girl in his care and causing injuries to her that required multiple surgeries, police said. Alvin D. Santiago, 29, of the 300 block of Ann Street, turned himself in Thursday and was charged with one count of aggravated battery to a child, police said.

    Troy D. Hammond

    North Central College names new president

    A 45-year-old scientist, teacher and entrepreneur has been named North Central College's next president, officials announced Friday. Troy D. Hammond was hired after being unanimously chosen by the college's board of trustees. He will officially be introduced to the campus on Monday and begin work Jan. 1.

    Associated Press The Scottish Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals says quick-thinking workers at Glasgow Airport remained calm when they discovered the 18-inch snake Tuesday under seats in the passenger cabin of a flight from Cancun, Mexico.

    Snake on a plane! Glasgow airport gets a surprise

    Scottish airport staff got a slithery surprise when they stumbled on a Mexican serpent stowaway under a seat.

    Associated Press A white fox walks across dried vegetation hanging from a log Wednesday on the shore of Evergreen Lake near Hudson.

    Rare white fox spotted in central Illinois

    Wildlife experts in central Illinois say boaters and fishermen who reported spotting a fluffy, white fox weren't seeing things.

    Ernesta, a 4 1/2-year-old endangered Mexican gray wolf, has her picture taken at the Brookfield Zoo. The female wolf will be moved Saturday.

    Brookfield Zoo to release gray wolf into wild
    Zoo officials say the release will boost the species' wild population, which is about 60 in New Mexico and Arizona.


    Northwest suburban police blotter

    Burglars broke a window at a home on Longford Road in Bartlett around 8 p.m. Oct. 25 and stole undisclosed items. Loss was estimated at $6,000.


    Veterans families get makeovers in Schaumburg

    The Heart Of A Marine Foundation, headquartered in Elk Grove Village, is working with Mario Tricoci Schaumburg to give makeovers to family members of veterans staying in Maywood while veterans receive treatment at Edward Hines Jr. VA Hospital in Maywood.


    Des Plaines firefighters featured in training manual

    Des Plaines firefighters will be featured in a textbook — titled Fundamentals of Firefighter Skills — expected to be published in December and used nationwide as a basic training manual for studying fire science.


    Four most dangerous words? ‘I told you so’

    "I told you so" can be four of the most dangerous words around, according to our Ken Potts, especially when it comes to relationships. Here are some tips for avoiding the phrase and maybe coming up with something a little less likely to spark an argument.

    Thomas J. Menghi Jr. sits on the front porch of his home Wednesday during an interview in Monroe, N.C.

    Scout leader: ‘Yes, I abused kids’

    Former scoutmaster Thomas J. Menghi Jr. says he was usually drunk when he molested numerous Boy Scouts during the early 1970s.

    A Haitian man removes mud and flood water from his truck, caused by heavy rains from Hurricane Sandy.

    Sandy pounds Bahamas after killing 39 in Caribbean

    The death toll was still rising in impoverished Haiti, reaching 25 on Friday as word of disasters reached officials and rain continued to fall.


    Blackhawk Middle School program aims to teach tolerance

    Blackhawk Middle School students in Bensenville will participate in a national Mix It Up at Lunch program on Monday, Oct. 29, as part of the school's anti-bullying and teaching tolerance program.

    Doug Beach

    Elmhurst College honors Jazz Band director

    Elmhurst College Jazz Band Director Doug Beach recently received the Dr. Andrew K. Prinz Faculty Merit Award for his dedication and commitment to students.

    George and Eleanor McGovern with daughters Ann and Susan at the church where he served as student pastor.

    McGovern recalled as a young pastor near Mundelein

    George S. McGovern was well known on the national political stage as a liberal Democrat and three time presidential candidate, who lost by a landslide in 1972 to Richard Nixon. But early on, McGovern was a popular student pastor at the Diamond Lake Methodist Church in Mundelein. “He was a great guy,” recalled Marilyn Gillies, who was 12 at that time and was baptized by McGovern.

    Justin Heneghan

    6-year sentence for St. Charles ecstasy dealer

    A St. Charles man is sentenced to six years in prison for possession of ecstasy and marijuana and trying to escape from police after a May 2010 arrest. Justin J. Heneghan, 26, jumped from a second story apartment window to avoid capture. The six years represents the minimum sentence on the most severe drug charges he pleaded guilty to earlier this year.


    Mount Prospect expects larger, balanced budget next year

    Mount Prospect's budget process is in high gear. This week, village Finance Director David Erb presented a 2013 budget of $93.1 million, a 3.4 percent increase from this year's spending plan. It includes $60.2 million for village operations, a 5.9 percent hike — and the first increase to the operating budget in two years.


    Cast of ‘The Lorax’
    South Elgin High School stages "The Lorax."

    South Elgin High School’s “The Lorax” is an original production. Drama teacher Holly McNeill could not find a stage adaptation of the story, so she wrote the script herself.

    South Elgin High School to stage ‘The Lorax’

    Who can resist Dr. Seuss and his offbeat, surprising humor? How often can you see an original high school production? How likely is it that a student performs despite disabilities? Holly McNeill, drama director and teacher of acting at South Elgin High School, was inspired by a dance version of Dr. Seuss' children's book, "The Lorax," directed many years ago by Melanie Meidel, now SEHS principal,...

    A police officer leaves the luxury Manhattan apartment building where police say a nanny stabbed two small children to death in a bathtub and then stabbed herself in New York, Thursday, Oct. 25, 2012. The nanny, who was found near a knife, was hospitalized in critical condition and was in police custody, and authorities said she is suspected of killing the children, who were pronounced dead at a hospital.

    Nanny suspected of killing 2 kids in NY apartment

    A nanny suspected of stabbing two young children to death in a luxury apartment near Central Park was in critical condition Friday with apparently self-inflicted injuries.The children's mother, Marina Krim, came home with her 3-year-old daughter on Thursday evening. Puzzled by the darkened apartment, she discovered the children's bodies in the bathtub; the nanny lay wounded nearby.

    The 4 1/2-year-old wolf, named Ernesta, will be paired with a mate for potential release

    Endangered gray wolf to be released into wild

    An endangered Mexican gray wolf will be released into the wild from Brookfield Zoo to a refuge in New Mexico. The Chicago Zoological Society runs Brookfield Zoo and says the female wolf will be moved Saturday to a U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service refuge. They say the 4 1/2-year-old wolf, named Ernesta, will be paired with a mate for potential release. Wildlife biologists will put the pair through a...

    Jennifer Barconi and Michael Kenyon

    Kane candidates spar over raises, campaigning

    Candidate for Kane County's 16th District seat, Mike Kenyon and Jennifer Barconi, spent much of a recent Daily Herald editorial board endorsement interview sparring over whether raises are necessary for county employees, whether the board should have laid off health department employees and the necessity of a new court computer system.

    Vice President Joe Biden speaks during a prayer service for former Democratic U.S. senator and three-time presidential candidate George McGovern at the First United Methodist Church in Sioux Falls, S.D., Thursday, Oct. 25, 2012. McGovern died Sunday in his native South Dakota at age 90.

    S. Dakota bids farewell to former Sen. McGovern

    As a presidential hopeful marked in history for his futile 1972 finish, George McGovern wore the badge of an unapologetic liberal. As a longtime Democratic officeholder from conservative South Dakota, the former senator had admirers who spanned the political spectrum.


    Campaigns deploy radio ads to gin up base voters

    Radio ads, an important component of a presidential candidate's media strategy, are bombarding voters in battleground states much the way such political commercials swamp television.

    White House senior adviser Valerie Jarrett, left, talks with singer William Adams, also know professionally as Will.i.am, at the Clinton Global Initiative annual meeting in New York. Whatever their political beliefs, some artists perform an age-old ritual: warming up the crowd before a political rally, generating enthusiasm and all-important buzz for events that otherwise could be overlooked in a crowded news cycle.

    Star-powered political rallies get party started

    Baseball great Hank Aaron is a Barack Obama guy. Golf legend Jack Nicklaus is in Mitt Romney's camp. From athletes and astronauts to singers and Hollywood stars, a growing line of celebrities is turning up at fancy dinners and rallies to build support and get out the vote for Obama or Romney, the president's Republican challenger.

    Republican presidential candidate and former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney campaigns at Worthington Industries, a metal processing company, in Worthington, Ohio, Thursday, Oct. 25, 2012.

    Romney closing argument focuses on the economy

    Mitt Romney is trying to close the deal with voters by focusing on their economic concerns, an area where polling shows the Republican nominee has an edge heading into the final days of the campaign. As President Barack Obama takes a break from the campaign trail, Romney was to deliver what his campaign billed as a significant economic address in swing state Iowa.

    Bushr Al Tawashi, as he is carried by his mother Arin Al Dakkar, outside of a private Sigma TV station, in Nicosia, Cyprus, Friday, Oct. 26, 2012. A 2-year-old Syrian boy who was believed dead after his family inadvertently left him behind as they fled shelling in Damascus last summer has been reunited with his parents in Cyprus, a lawyer said.

    Syrian toddler thought dead reunited with parents

    NICOSIA, Cyprus — A two-year-old Syrian boy who was believed dead after his family inadvertently left him behind as they fled shelling in Damascus last summer has been reunited with his parents in Cyprus, a lawyer said Friday.


    Officials: Suicide bomber kills 36 in Afghanistan

    KABUL, Afghanistan — A suicide bomber blew himself up outside a mosque in northern Afghanistan on Friday, killing 36 people and wounding 23, officials said.The attack in the town of Maymana, capital of northern Faryab province, came as people were gathering at the mosque to celebrate the Eid al-Adha holiday.


    Death toll tops 100 in Myanmar ethnic strife

    SITTWE, Myanmar — The death toll from recent ethnic violence in Myanmar’s western state of Rakhine has surpassed 100, an official said Friday, as the government warned that the strife risks harming the country’s reputation as it seeks to install democratic rule.


    Fighting mars Syria holiday truce; protests resume

    BEIRUT — Syrians took to the streets for the largest anti-regime protests in months in several cities Friday, taking advantage a lull in fighting as a cease-fire took effect at the start of a Muslim holiday. But scattered violence including battles over a northern military base and a Damascus suburb illustrated the difficulty of maintaining even a limited truce.

    Jon Kuester has been a living history farmer at Primrose Farm in St. Charles for four years.

    Moving Picture: Farming that’s old school at Primrose Farm in St. Charles

    Jon Kuester, of East Dundee, uses his passion for teaching and history as the living history farmer at Primrose Farm in St. Charles. "American history was always my focus," Kuester said. "But agriculture is the story of American history, so if you're going to understand America you have to understand agriculture. So I started farming again, and it's turned out to be a pretty good thing for me."

    Ann Skwarek, left, of Prospect Heights is retiring after working as a nurse in the neonatal intensive care unit at Advocate Lutheran General Hospital for 40 years. Wishing her well is another 40-year veteran, Cora Reidl of Chicago.

    Prospect Heights woman reflects on 40 years as neonatal nurse

    Ann Skwarek has seen a lot change in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit of Advocate Lutheran General Hospital since she started working there as a nurse a few weeks after it opened 40 years ago. The Prospect Heights resident said she can't imagine doing anything else. "You come in every day knowing you can make a difference in somebody's life," Skwarek said at her retirement party Thursday.


    Newsapalooza event to benefit Clearbrook

    A Chicago-based fundraiser will benefit families in the Northwest suburbs for the first time this year, organizers said. Newsapalooza, an annual benefit concert hosted by Chicago radio personality Roe Conn, this year plans to donate funds to Clearbrook, the Arlington Heights-based nonprofit that provides opportunities for children and adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities.

    Barrington resident Bob Lee, 70, talks bike helmet fashion with two boys at a send-off party for him in early September before he left on his ride to raise money for cancer research, ALS (Lou Gehrig’s disease), and hospice services.

    Barrington cyclist finishing ride, still seeks donors

    Barrington's Bob Lee will be on a flight home from Southern California Saturday, having completed his 2,500-mile "Ride for 3 Reasons" by bicycle with a round-trip crossing of the Mexican border Friday afternoon. The 70-year-old's ongoing mission is to raise $1 million for cancer, ALS and hospice services.


    Ridge Family Center wins national contest

    Ridge Family Center for Learning in Elk Grove Village is the grand prize winner of the Fuel Up to Play 60 Casting Call Challenge, sponsored by the Midwest Dairy Council and the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

    Senior engineer Dan Scharf, 39, in his office at the NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, Calif.

    Rockford native works on Mars rover

    When he was 12 years old, Dan Scharf was watching TV in his Rockford home and saw images that Voyager 2 had captured looking back into the solar system from past Uranus. His reaction was somewhat akin to John Belushi's character in "The Blues Brothers," when Jake Elwood had a light-guided epiphany about getting the band back together.


    Illinois Tollway board awards $26M in contracts

    Illinois Tollway officials have awarded more than $26 million in contracts for projects that widen Interstate 90 from Rockford to the Kennedy Expressway and create a western access to Chicago's O'Hare International Airport.


    Chicago man acquitted in Rockford murder trial

    in Rockford has found a Chicago man not guilty of first-degree murder in a case involving a gun battle in a restaurant parking lot.Forty-nine-year-old Charles Knight was acquitted Thursday in the April 2005 death of 21-year-old Joshua Irwin. Prosecutors had accused Knight of robbing Irwin outside a Rockford Pizza Hut and shooting the Rockford man in the head.


    Wisconsin unemployment benefits stalled by state backlog

    Benefit checks have been delayed for more than 9,000 unemployed Wisconsinites because of a state backlog. Labor officials say the claims that are backlogged are all in need of manual processing because the filer received an overpayment after underreporting wages.


    Expert: Chicago police rarely uphold complaints

    An expert testifying at a trial focused on whether Chicago police look the other way when one of their own is accused of wrongdoing said the number of complaints acted on in Chicago is below national averages. Testimony at the federal civil trial continues Friday. It stems from a lawsuit filed by a female bartender beaten in 2007 by off-duty officer Anthony Abbate.


    3 killed in 1-vehicle crash in Wisconsin’s Dane County

    Sheriff's officials say three people are dead in an early morning crash in Dane County. Authorities say a car left Highway 51 in the Town of Dunn about 2:30 a.m. Friday and struck a tree. Sheriff's communications supervisor Candy King says all three people in the vehicle were killed. King says the crash happened near Lake Kegonsa .


    Not-guilty plea in Wis. Social Security fraud case

    The lawyer for a Portage County man accused of helping to conceal his mother's death for decades and collecting her Social Security payments has entered not-guilty pleas on his client's behalf.

    Wayne Sobczak

    Leader of troubled Antioch Rescue Squad retires

    Wayne Sobczak has retired as chief of the troubled Antioch Rescue Squad, following months of reports about misconduct involving members under his supervision, village officials confirmed Thursday. Village Attorney Bob Long said rescue squad Assistant Chief Brian DeKind announced Sobczak's resignation in an email to the organization's membership.

    Top, from left: Sue Draffkorn, John Hammerand, Robert Martens. Bottom, from left: Mary Margaret Maule, Sandra Salgado.

    McHenry County Board District 4 candidates express top concerns

    Candidates for the four seats in District 4 for the McHenry County Board talk about their top concerns and goals.

    Cathleen Koch, 30, of Elgin, was sentenced to eight years in prison last month but had her sentenced reduced to four years yesterday.

    Dawn Patrol: Lake County Board candidate has past under another name

    Lake County Board candidate Michael Carbone has a criminal history, but under another name. Sentence reduced for Elgin mother in toddler beating case. A California congresswoman who had medically necessary abortions blasts U.S. Rep. Joe Walsh. Bloomingdale firefighter 'shocked' by statewide award. San Francisco Giants lead the World Series 2-0.


    Change of seasons can be bittersweet

    Some seasons are easier to embrace than others. The loss of a loved one or something dear to us is, oftentimes, much harder to endure than a desired change that brings us new and exciting opportunities.But God desires to enrich our lives regardless of how a change comes our way, columnist Annettee Budzban says.

    Empty storefronts still line the Hanover Square Shopping Center in Hanover Park. Village leaders this week expressed frustration with the slow pace of progress in finding tenants for the shopping center.

    Hanover Park at crossroads with rundown shopping center

    Hanover Park officials are finding that the dilapidated Hanover Square Shopping Center, a highly visible property that the village purchased for $2.8 million last year, is at a crossroads. They're discussing whether to publicly finance its redevelopment or group it with other available properties and solicit private redevelopment on a larger scale.

    Matt Murphy, left, opposes David Page in the 27th Senate District

    Murphy, Page differ on gambling, slots for Arlington Park

    With Arlington Park situated in the middle of the state’s 27th Senate District, both candidates for the seat are speaking out about where they stand on expanding gambling in Illinois. Incumbent Republican Sen. Matt Murphy is now an ardent supporter of expansion because of what it means for the racetrack, while Democratic challenger David Page believes the state should not rely on gambling to fix...

    This photo of a bald eagle with rainbow in the background was taken in Lake of the Woods, Ontario, Canada. I took while fishing on Lake of the Woods Lake. This area is near Nester Falls Ontario, Canada.

    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 October 22nd.


    DuPage could get new ballot provider

    Before deciding whether to change its ballot vendor, the DuPage Election Commission first wants to know if can find a better deal. Members of the election board on Thursday agreed to let other vendors compete for a possible contract to print ballots for the February and April local elections.



    Beebe returns with 3 TDs in Aurora Christian rout

    Welcome back, Chad Beebe. Sidelined for the past 5 weeks with a broken arm, Beebe certainly made up for some lost time during Aurora Christian's 49-12 triumph over Raby (6-3) in Friday night's opening round of the Class 3A state football playoffs in Aurora.

    Downers Grove North’s Richard Olekanma takes down Batavia’s Jason Toth in the fourth quarter of playoff game on Friday, October 26.

    Downers Grove North upsets Batavia

    When No. 8 Downers Grove North jumped to a 24-13 halftime lead at No. 1 Batavia Friday night in the opening round of the Class 7A playoffs, history was guaranteed to repeat itself. The Bulldogs were hoping the history would follow 2011 when also as a No. 1 seed the Bulldogs fell behind 28-7 only to stun Notre Dame 35-28 on their way to the state semifinals. Instead it was the Trojans who repeated history. They watched as the Bulldogs cut an 18-point deficit to 6 early in the fourth quarter before sophomore quarterback David Edwards quieted a big Batavia crowd by engineering the game-clinching 65-yard touchdown drive for a 38-26 win.

    Bartlett’s Kyle Garcia (11) and his teammates celebrate the Hawks’ 14-0 win over Leyden in the Class 8A playoffs in Northlake Friday.

    Bartlett gets defensive on Leyden

    The Leyden defense held Bartlett to 125 total yards in Friday's Class 8A playoff opener in Northlake, but the Hawks did them one better. Bartlett's defense allowed the Eagles inside the 16-yard line on just one drive — which stalled at the 2 and resulted in a missed field goal — and its offense mounted two impressive scoring marches as the 10th-seeded Hawks edged No. 7 Leyden 14-0.


    Flynn, Naperville Central break records, beat Metea

    One school's historic postseason run came to a close, while the other school is counting on its own historic evening to lead to even better things.Behind the history-making goals from senior Pat Flynn, Naperville Central blasted Metea Valley 6-1 Friday night at the Class 3A sectional boys soccer final at West Chicago. The Redhawks (21-1) also set the school record for victories along the way.

    Rolling Meadows’ Jack Milas lofts a pass from mid-air to Alex Niecikowski for a 64-yard completion in Class 6A first-round playoff action Friday at Meadows.

    Lake Forest gets Rolling Meadows on the run

    A night that started out so promising for Rolling Meadows took a turn for the worst in the second half. Lake Forest scored five times after halftime while holding Meadows to just a field goal on its way to a 42-24 victory in the first round of the Class 6A playoffs at Robert A. Hoese Athletic Field. Meadows led 21-7 at halftime and still held a 24-14 advantage midway through the quarter, but three takeaways by Lake Forest, two of which resulted in touchdowns, were costly.


    Wheaton North routs St. Charles East

    Wheaton North, as quarterback Johnny Peltz said, just did what it does. Control the line of scrimmage. Get skilled athletes into space. Rack up big points.


    Take your pick: Big plays, and players, power Lakes

    Second-seeded Lakes earned a 35-21 victory in Class 6A opening-round playoff acting against No. 15 St. Viator on Friday night in Lake Villa. "We made a lot of big plays," Lakes wide receiver Andrew Spencer said.

    Stevenson’s Zach Novoselsky celebrates with Anthony Bozin after scoring in the first half against Warren during round one of the Class 8A football playoffs Friday night at Stevenson.

    Bozin, Stevenson bowl over Warren

    Anthony Bozin: The Chosen One. The 5-foot-9 speedster with the jitterbug moves made plays all over the field Friday night in leading No. 5 Stevenson to a 26-13 win over No. 12 Warren in a Class 8A state playoff opener between North Suburban Conference rivals in Lincolnshire. Bozin rushed for a pair of touchdowns, caught a career-high 10 passes for 90 yards and even intercepted a pair of Adam Reuss passes. The wingback/cornerback has been a varsity player since his sophomore year, but this might have been the likable senior's best game, especially considering the stage.

    Joey Rhattigan of Neuqua ,center, moves the ball during the Naperville North at Neuqua Valley football game Friday.

    Neuqua rolls past Naperville N.

    Almost literally, Neuqua Valley's football team was unstoppable Friday night. The key was stopping Naperville North. The Wildcats did just that in the second half, dominating the final 24 minutes of a 56-20 victory over visiting Naperville North in the first round of the Class 8A playoffs.


    Happy ending favors Stevenson

    A better script could not have been written for Friday's sectional soccer final. Libertyville vs. Stevenson. Two storied programs led by distinguished coaches Andy Bitta and Mark Schartner with a combined 750-plus career victories. There have been countless matches between these clubs over the years — yet never one this late into the season. Alex Smith and Joseph Hugener helped write themselves and their mates into Stevenson lore with back-to-back strikes to complete a brilliant comeback giving the Patriots (18-3-1) a memorable 5-3 victory over their longtime rivals in the Conant sectional championship. With a trip to the 3A state tournament within reach, the Patriots await their supersectional opponent at Glenbrook South on Tuesday.


    Down and dirty: Libertyville’s on a roll

    After having played on field turf most of the season both home and away, Libertyville junior Conor Simpson has found that good old-fashioned grass and mud fields are just fine with him. "I am so used to playing on turf that the last two weeks we got to get a little muddy," said Simpson as he looked down at his not-so-white football jersey. "This is fun, too." Simpson and the Wildcats had their fair share of fun, and it all came at the expense of Harlem in a Class 7A opening-round game Friday night. Simpson ran for one score and caught two more scoring passes from senior Jack Deichl as the Wildcats roared to their first playoff win since 2006, 48-28 over the No. 8-seeded Huskies. The win gives Libertyville (8-2) its first home playoff game in six years when the Wildcats host the winner of Saturday's game between No. 16 seed Elk Grove and No. 1 Glenbard West.

    Rolling Meadows George Someris consoles with Raul-Alba Cortez after Rolling Meadows loss to Lake Forest in the Class 6A playoffs at Rolling Meadows High School on Friday.

     Images: Rolling Meadows vs. Lake Forest football
    The first round of the IHSA football playoffs kicked off with the Rolling Meadows High School Mustangs hosting the Scouts of Lake Forest High School Friday night, October 26th, in Rolling Meadows. Lake Forest beat Rolling Meadows 42-24.


    Waubonsie Valley puts away bad memories

    In one night Waubonsie Valley washed away a year's full of pent-up playoff football angst.And did it in emphatic fashion.The No. 4 seed Warriors simply wore down No. 13 Proviso West, scoring 24 unanswered points in the second half for a resounding 38-6 win in Friday's Class 8A first-round playoff game in Aurora.

    Joey Rhattigan of Neuqua,center, moves the ball during the Naperville North at Neuqua Valley football game Friday.

    Images: Naperville North at Neuqua Valley football
    Neuqua Valley High School hosted Naperville North High School in Class 8A week one of the IHSA football playoffs Friday night in Naperville. Neuqua Valley beat Naperville North 56-20.


    Trap game: Prospect wins at Glenbrook N.

    Pat Costello and Prospect trapped Glenbrook North in the opening round of the Class 7A playoffs in Northbrook. Costello, who plays offensive tackle, helped the No. 13-seeded Knights kick out the No. 4 Spartans 35-14. Prospect will host Wheaton North, a 41-13 winner over St. Charles East, next weekend in the second round. "I just run my feet and run right through them, " said Costello, who threw several key trap blocks in the second half to spring running back Jack Tuttle. "I just was staying with my technique. We say that they went to double ones, and that is when we knew we had to go right at them." Costello, along with Kevin Kern, Mike Houghton, Jackson Wrede and Carl Erbe helped Prospect roll up 260 yards on the ground, 171 of which came in the second half.


    Rivermen storm past Wolves 4-1

    Chicago Wolves game report:[The Chicago Wolves surrendered 4 unanswered goals in the third period and dropped a 4-1 Illinois Lottery Cup contest to the Peoria Rivermen at Carver Arena on Friday night.The Wolves' lone goal came 2:57 into the second period. Center Steve Pinizzotto forced a turnover at the Peoria blue line and sent a pass to right wing Darren Haydar in the near circle. He deked a defenseman and slipped the puck to center Jordan Schroeder, who beat goaltender Jake Allen (32 saves).The Wolves dropped their second straight game after opening the season with 4 consecutive victories.

    Ohio State quarterback Braxton Miller appeared to be seriously hurt in last week’s 29-22 overtime win against Purdue but returned to practice this week and seems to be fine

    Amid changes, No. 9 Ohio St., Penn St. still rolling

    The ninth-ranked Buckeyes and surging Nittany Lions just might be the class of the Big Ten at midseason, but neither team can win the league title or play in the postseason because of NCAA sanctions. Saturday's meeting then, has turned into a virtual midseason bowl game.


    James, Notre Dame take out Grayslake North

    In the first playoff game in school history, Grayslake North put together a beautiful opening drive. But in the long run, the Knights couldn't hang with Notre Dame, which plays in the competitive East Suburban Catholic Conference and is led by lightning-fast RB Chris James, who ran for 247 yards by halftime. The visiting Dons won the Class 6A matchup 46-27.


    Schaumburg locks down Glenbrook South

    Following Friday night's 42-7 playoff-opening win over Glenbrook South, Schaumburg looks locked. And loaded. The Saxons dedicated themselves to improvement and focus after last week's regular-season thrashing from Palatine, and it showed at home against the visiting Titans, who finished 5-5. Schaumburg scored on four consecutive possessions in the first half in zipping to a 29-0 halftime lead, limiting Glenbrook South to 30 yards total offense while rolling up 236 in the first two quarters.

    Buffalo Grove senior Veronika Jedryka competes in her final Mid-Suburban League meet today at Barrington. She’s seeded second in the 100-yard freestyle and third in the 50 free; the meet begins at 11 a.m.

    Girls swimming / Scouting the Mid-Suburban League meet

    Here's a look at Saturday's Mid-Suburban League swimming meet, where Barrington hosts a strong field while trying to win its 21st straight conference title.


    Swenson, Wauconda make the most of playoff appearance

    Austin Swenson was twisting, turning, kicking and doing just about anything he could to get back in at quarterback for Wauconda on Friday night. Swenson had played a big part in helping the underdog Bulldogs hang with unbeaten Marian Central in their Class 5A football playoff opener at George Harding Field. Then, a hit near the end of the first half led to spasms that shot up the senior's back and sidelined him for his team's first offensive series of the second half. But there was no way Swenson was going to miss any more time even though the second-seeded Hurricanes (10-0) and explosive quarterback Chris Streveler were pulling away to a deceptive 42-10 victory. Swenson hung in there the rest of the way and completed 19 of 38 passes for 293 yards.

    Bartlett’s Kyle Garcia (11) holds up the ball as the referee signals touchdown to put the Hawks up 14-0 over Leyden in Northlake Friday.

    Images: Bartlett vs. Leyden football
    The Eagles of Leyden High School host the Bartlett Hawks in weeek one of the IHSA football playoffs Friday night in Northlake. Bartlett won the contest 14-0.


    Grant runs away with it

    Host Grant was not about to let injuries plague its Class 6A football playoff opener Friday night against No. 12 seed Chicago Lake View. The fifth-seeded Bulldogs started off fast offensively with mostly young, reserve skill players doing the damage against the overmatched Wildcats and they never looked back as they built a huge 45-0 halftime lead before cruising to a 59-0 victory. Grant (8-2) will face the winner of Saturday's game between No. 4 Crystal Lake Central and No. 13 Hyde Park next weekend in the second round.

    Jake Peavy had a solid season in 2012, compiling an 11-12 record with a 3.37 ERA. He will be a free agent, but Sox GM Rick Hahn said Peavy would like to stay with the Sox if possible.

    Plenty to do for new White Sox GM Hahn

    Now that Friday’s press conference and barrage of questions are in the past, Rick Hahn can officially get to work as White Sox general manager. First on the docket? Figuring out whether or not to re-sign Jake Peavy and A.J. Pierzynski.


    United stops Kaneland

    Once a soccer match gets into overtime, anything can happen. Unfortunately for Kaneland, what happened in OT during Friday night's Class 2A Sterling sectional championship against East Moline United put an end to its season. The Panthers' leading scorer, Drew Merideth, connected just 1:33 into overtime and the Knights were unable to score the equalizer in the overtime or in the second overtime, losing 3-2.


    Royals claim Cubs’ Volstad

    Pitcher Chris Volstad, a major disappointment for the Cubs this year, was claimed off waivers Friday by the Kansas City Royals. The Cubs also outrighted several other players to Class AAA Iowa as they clear space on their 40-man roster.

    Stevenson players celebrate after beating Warren in round one of the Class 8A football playoffs Friday night at Stevenson High School.

    Images: Warren vs. Stevenson football
    The Stevenson Patriots hosted the Warren Blue Devils for Class 8A football playoff action Friday, October 26 in Lincolnshire. Stevenson beat Warren 26-13.

    New England Revolution midfielder Kelyn Rowe (11) knees Chicago Fire forward Chris Rolfe during their MLS soccer match in Foxborough, Mass., Saturday, Oct. 20, 2012. The Revolution won 1-0.

    Victory means Fire will claim 2nd place

    Chicago Fire players don't plan to stick their noses into New York's business. They just want to take care of their own.


    Warren stops Barrrington in Auburn sectional

    Warren couldn't maintain its recent prodigious scoring pace against a team the caliber of Barrington, but the Blue Devils scored just enough, defeating the Broncos 2-1 to win the Class 3A Rockford Auburn sectional at Wyeth Field in Rockford. Auner Solis scored twice and Warren withstood a late Barrington rally to hang on for the victory. Ironically, the Blue Devils play next at Barrington, where they will meet St. Charles East in the Barrington supersectional.


    Repeat MSL title for Prospect’s Liva

    Prospect sophomore Dana Liva said it was her father Eric, a former college diver, who encouraged her to take up the sport and inspired her to be the best she could be. Great choice, dad. In an impressive performance , Liva won her second consecutive Mid-Suburban League girls diving championship Friday evening at the Barrington Natatorium. The soph's point total of 406.15 was far and away the best among a strong field. Hersey's Hannah Bovino (369.2) was second, while sophomore Sydney Plichta of Fremd (357.4) placed third.

    Chicago Bulls forward Carlos Boozer (5) shoots over Oklahoma City Thunder center Hasheem Thabeet during the second half of an NBA preseason basketball game, Tuesday, Oct. 23, 2012, in Chicago. The Bulls won 94-89. Boozer had 24 points, 12 rebounds and five assists. (AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast)

    Hinrich sits, Bulls beat Pacers 97-90

    Nate Robinson replaced Kirk Hinrich in the Bulls' starting lineup and had 21 points and eight assists, helping the Bulls hold off the Indiana Pacers, 97-90 at Notre Dame's Joyce Center.


    St. Charles East rolls over Larkin

    St. Charles East's boys soccer team heard the echoes. The Saints knew that Larkin wanted a date with the Saints in the sectional final, long before the sectional round even started. "I saw something in the paper that they had been waiting for us the entire tournament," Saints' junior midfielder Dan DiLeonardi said. "It was a little bit of motivation. We felt that last game was a little closer than it should have been. We wanted to show we were better than that in the first meeting." DiLeonardi alluded to a 3-1 win over Larkin earlier this season, where it was 1-1 until the last 4 minutes. But the Class 3A York sectional final Friday wasn't even close. Forward TC Hull chipped two-thirds of his hat trick in the first half while DiLeonardi had a hat trick of his own in the second half as the top-seeded Saints (20-2-1) crushed the third-seeded Larkin (15-6-4) 8-1, giving St. Charles East its first sectional hardware since 2001.

    Detroit Tigers' Austin Jackson reacts after striking out during the ninth inning of Game 2 of baseball's World Series against the San Francisco Giants Thursday, Oct. 25, 2012, in San Francisco. The Giants won 2-0 to take a 2-0 lead in the series. (AP Photo/David J. Phillip)

    Tigers hope bats warm up in World Series chill

    Something better change for Triple Crown winner Miguel Cabrera, Prince Fielder and the Tigers real soon or their year is going to end real shortly. They totaled only three runs and 10 hits in San Francisco while falling into a 2-0 deficit against the Giants

    Kenny Williams, center, Rick Hahn, left, listen to Detroit Tigers general manager David Dombrowski in July 2011.

    Hahn in charge, though Williams looms large

    Rick Hahn is the new White Sox GM, though he will report to Ken Williams the way Williams used to report to Jerry Reinsdorf. At least, that's how it will work in theory.

    Bartlett's Nick Mazzei almost loses the handle but holds on to the ball on a carry against South Elgin. Bartlett travels to Northlake to take on Leyden Friday at 7 p.m. in the first round of the Class 8A playoffs.

    Suburban rivals clash in prep football playoffs

    With the cool weather comes another harbinger of Fall: Prep football playoffs! First round games get underway today and Saturday all over the state, with a number of big match-ups among suburban rivals. Among the 20 suburban conference match ups tonight are Leyden vs. Bartlett, Batavia vs. Downers Grove North and Schaumburg vs. Glenbrook South. Saturday's suburban contests include Fremd vs. Glenbard North and Lake Zurich vs. Crystal Lake South. Here's a complete rundown of weekend games and a link to our comprehensive Football Focus section with all the details.


    Scouting Saturday’s Tri-Cities playoff football games
    Taking a look at Saturday's playoff games in the Tri-Cities area.

    Indiana Fever star Tamika Catchings celebrates with the WNBA championship trophy and Finals MVP award.

    WNBA crown completes Catchings’ glittering resume

    Former Stevenson star Tamika Catchings finally gets her due and wins the first WNBA championship of her illustrious 12-year career.

    Devin Hester agreed with special teams coach Dave Toub that he needs to play better in the return game.

    Hester vows to be more aggressive in return game

    After temporarily benching the greatest combined kick-returner in NFL history last week, special teams coach Dave Toub said Devin Hester needs to be more aggressive.And Hester agreed.

    Notre Dame linebacker Manti Te’o celebrates after an interception against BYU last Saturday in South Bend, Ind. Notre Dame has built its undefeated start behind Te’o and the nation’s second-stingiest defense.

    No. 5 Irish, No. 8 Sooners add to rich history

    The words "Play Like a Champion Today" are plastered on the walls leading from the locker room to the field at both No. 5 Notre Dame and No. 8 Oklahoma, a rich piece of tradition the storied schools happen to share. Come Saturday night, a rare meeting between the programs will test the championship mettle for both the Fighting Irish (7-0) and the Sooners (5-1).

    The NHL announced Friday that 326 regular-season games from Oct. 11 through Nov. 30 were lost — more than 26.5 percent of the schedule. The news came one day after a league-imposed deadline passed for a deal with the players’ association that would allow for a full season.

    NHL cancels games through November
    The NHL announced Friday that 326 regular-season games from Oct. 11 through Nov. 30 were lost — more than 26.5 percent of the schedule. The news came one day after a league-imposed deadline passed for a deal with the players’ association that would allow for a full season.


    For Hoosiers, Illini, one streak must end

    For Indiana and Illinois, Big Ten wins are hard to come by. The Hoosiers have lost their last 11, chalking up their last conference victory in a game against Purdue almost two years ago in the 2010 season finale. Illinois has lost nine straight since beating the Hoosiers last fall.One of the two, will end their skid on Saturday in Champaign (11 a.m. BTN) and Indiana might have the edge.

    Northwestern running back Venric Mark, here heading for an 80-yard touchdown against Nebraska, leads the Big Ten in all-purpose yards per game and has rushed for more than 100 yards in five games this season.

    Northwestern, Iowa hoping to bounce back

    Northwestern and Iowa have spent the past week trying to get over crushing home defeats.At least the Wildcats were close.Northwestern (6-2, 2-2 Big Ten) blew a 12-point lead midway through the fourth quarter and lost a college football heartbreaker to Nebraska, 29-28, last Saturday. The Hawkeyes (4-3, 2-1) let Penn State jump out to an early lead and got crushed, 38-14, in one of the worst losses of coach Kirk Ferentz's 14-year tenure.The results gave the teams an added sense of urgency heading into Saturday's game at Northwestern (11 a.m. ESPN2, WGN 720-AM) since both are in danger falling out of contention in the Big Ten Legends Division."It falls on the leadership. There's no question about it. There's a certain formula we have around here, win or lose. We stick to that formula," Northwestern coach Pat Fitzgerald said. "The guys understand what happened, what we did and what we can do better."

    The firing of Ozzie Guillen marks the end of an era. Spellman's Scorecard discusses, Guillen, FOX's super slo-mo and even the Cubs and the White Sox - along with the usual nonsense.

    Ozzie last of a vocal, charismatic breed

    The firing of Ozzie Guillen marks the end of an era. Spellman's Scorecard discusses, Guillen, FOX's super slo-mo and even the Cubs and the White Sox - along with the usual nonsense.

    Tillman_Charles_mg0607 Charles "Peanut" Tillman, Cornerback, 2007-2008 Chicago Bears football.

    Plenty of reasons to root for Tillman
    Charles Tillman has been a standout cornerback for the Bears for 10 years. See all the reasons why John Dietz says it's easy to root for Tillman, as well as how you can help out his cause when the fantasy football season is over.

    Chicago Bears middle linebacker Brian Urlacher is playing like he did when he was much younger, says Mike North.

    Bears can march through the NFC

    Mike North says the Chicago Bears are poised to make a true run for it. Keep them healthy and there is a good chance they will have to go through the New York Giants to get to the Super Bowl.

    Cary-Grove and senior quarterback Quinn Baker will host Rockford Auburn Saturday at 4 p.m. in the first round of the Class 6A playoffs.

    Cary-Grove looks to extend first-round streak

    Cary-Grove will face a team that arguably made the greatest turnaround in the state this season when the top-seeded Trojans (9-0) host No. 16 Rockford Auburn (5-4) in a Class 6A playoff opener on Saturday at 4 p.m.Auburn entered the season on a 35-game losing streak, but things changed immediately under new coach Dan Appino, who migrated from Rockford Boylan last winter after leading the Titans to consecutive state championships in 2010 and 2011. The Knights put their losing streak to bed by winning the season opener against Belvidere North, 16-14. They went on to defeat Jefferson, Guilford, Freeport and Rockford East to qualify for the playoffs for only the second time in school history and the first time since 1990.Auburn’s reward for such a feel-good run? The Knights draw a program that wins first-round playoff games for a living. Cary-Grove has won its playoff opener every season since 2004. It’s a streak that does not garner much attention from the Trojans themselves, however.“We haven’t really talked about it,” second-year Cary-Grove coach Brad Seaburg said. “That’s a result of the success of the program as far as winning the first game of the playoffs, but everyone’s goal is to win the state championship. You can’t win it unless you win that first game. “Our guys are grounded. They know what’s at stake. We’ve had some great teams here and only one took home the trophy. They know to take nothing for granted, play every down and be on your game.”Led by fullback Kyle Norberg (6-foot-2, 211 pounds) and safety/split end Zach Marszal (6-0, 182), Cary-Grove marched to the outright title of the Fox Valley Conference’s Valley Division — its first since the 2009 Class 6A state championship season — and completed its sixth undefeated regular season in nine years.The Trojans have battled through key injuries all season but are nearly back at full strength for the playoffs. Sophomore offensive lineman Michael Gomez (5-11, 273) played three series last week after missing 4 games. He’ll start this week, Seaburg said.Also back at full strength is speed merchant Ryan Mahoney, Cary-Grove’s big play threat. He played last week against Prairie Ridge and showed no lingering effects from the high ankle sprain that caused him to miss several midseason games. Mahoney caught a 63-yard touchdown pass, ran for a 63-yard score and finished with 169 of his team’s 324 total yards. Senior quarterback Quinn Baker had the cast removed from a broken finger on his non-throwing hand on Wednesday. He split reps at practice Wednesday and Thursday with sophomore Jason Gregoire, who filled in competently the last two weeks while Baker healed. Auburn will be hard pressed to stop Norberg, who is remarkably quick through the line of scrimmage and is tough to reel in once he is loose. The senior has rushed for 1,282 yards and 16 touchdowns on 124 carries.The Knights’ top offensive weapon is Devone Manns. He has gained 686 yards on 111 carries, while Quon Herron has rushed for 373 yards on 78 carries, according to the Rockford Register Star.Though the opponent is unfamiliar, the Auburn schemes will not be. Appino employs many of the same formations he used at Boylan two years ago when his team defeated the Trojans in a Class 6A quarterfinal, 20-14 in overtime, thus ending the career of Cary-Grove hall-of-fame coach Bruce Kay.The Trojans will be concerned with Auburn’s overall team speed no matter the formation.“They have some playmakers on offense, and they have the ability to throw the ball up and go get it,” Seaburg said. “Anytime you play a team that has playmakers that can break off a long run or complete a long pass for a score, you’re never safe in a game even if you are controlling the clock.”


    @$ID/[No paragraph style]:Associated Press/2007 Investor Carl Icahn speaks at the World Business Forum in New York.

    Oshkosh rejects Icahn’s $3 billion offer

    The offer is "inadequate, undervalues the company and is not in the best interests of all Oshkosh shareholders," the board said in a statement today.

    A map indicates Hurricane Sandy’s position Friday moving through the Bahamas off the east coast of Florida. Its path could see it blend with a winter storm and reach the U.S. East Coast as a super-storm next week.

    Airlines ask fliers to reschedule due to hurricane

    Forecasters say it could blend with a winter storm to produce a so-called "Frankenstorm" along the U.S. East Coast next week. They say there will be hundreds of miles of steady, strong and damaging winds and rain for the entire Eastern region for several days.

    Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co. vehicle tires sit in a storage room at Keister’s Tire Center in Kewanee, Ill. The company’s stock fell 10 percent on Friday.

    Weak earnings reports weigh on the stock market

    Stocks closed mostly lower Friday after investors found little to like in weak corporate earnings reports and news of only tepid growth in the U.S. economy in the third quarter.

    Boeing CEO Jim McNerney

    Boeing touts outsourcing for suppliers to Mexico

    Chicago-based Boeing is encouraging its suppliers to attend a workshop next month to learn how to outsource business to Mexico.The Seattle Times reports that Patrick McKenna, director of Supply Chain Strategy and Supplier Management at Boeing Commercial Airplanes, has urged suppliers to attend a Nov. 15 workshop in Chicago to learn how to do business in Mexico.“Several of our suppliers have successfully set up factories in Mexico because of the numerous advantages that Mexico offers to aerospace suppliers,” McKenna wrote in a letter dated Oct. 17. “Boeing will be sending several people to this event, and we wanted to inform our supply base of this opportunity.”The event’s organizers will waive the $200 registration fees for Boeing suppliers, he said.Tom Wroblewski, president of District 751 of the International Association of Machinists, reacted to the letter in political terms.“We’d think that Boeing CEO Jim McNerney, as chairman of President Obama’s council on exports, would be particularly sensitive to the importance of exporting American products, not jobs,” said Wroblewski, via email. “We plan on talking to Boeing about this. We believe it is counterproductive to what we are trying to accomplish here.”Boeing spokesman Larry Wilson said “it’s a matter of routine business” to keep the company’s suppliers informed of opportunities to expand their capacity around the world.American Industries Group, a private company that helps locate manufacturing operations in Mexico, is running the workshop.It can build or lease facilities there for corporate clients and also offers administrative support including human resources, customs, accounting and environmental regulatory approval, according to workshop coordinator Myrna De Las Casas.American Industries has helped more than 200 corporations get started in Mexico, “80 percent of them from the U.S.,” she said.Boeing started promoting the event just recently, De Las Casas said, and she expects some to join the 18 companies already signed up.


    OfficeMax declares quarterly dividend

    Office supply company OfficeMax Inc. said its board of directors declared a quarterly cash dividend of 2 cents per common share, payable on Nov. 30 to shareholders of record as of the close of business on Nov. 15.


    Gallagher acquires IBIS Advisors

    Arthur J. Gallagher & Co. said it has acquired IBIS Advisors headquartered in Los Angeles, Calif.  Terms of the transaction were not disclosed.


    AMCOL 3Q sales tempered by global currencies, weaker demand

    Industrial products and services supplier AMCOL International said a stronger dollar and a declining market demand for several prodicts tempered third quarter 2012 net sales results.


    Oil falls as massive storm aims for East Coast

    The price of oil is down slightly as the market eyes a massive storm heading for the East Coast with the potential to force refinery closures and delays in import deliveries. Benchmark oil fell 9 cents to $85.96 per barrel Friday.

    Drugmaker Merck & Co. said Friday, Oct. 26, 2012 that third-quarter profit rose 2 percent as reduced spending on overhead offset lower sales due to new generic competition for its top-selling drug. The company beat Wall Street’s profit expectations and narrowed its 2012 profit forecast, to a range of $2.08 to $2.24 per share, from its July forecast of $2.04 to $2.30.

    Merck 3Q profit up 2 pct despite sales decline

    Drugmaker Merck & Co. said Friday that third-quarter profit rose 2 percent as reduced spending on overhead offset lower sales due to new generic competition for its top-selling drug, Singulair.


    China blocks New York Times website after article

    China blocked access to The New York Times website Friday after the paper published a lengthy article claiming the family of Premier Wen Jiabao has amassed assets worth $2.7 billion through a web of investments.


    Study: Flood of money leaving China

    Chinese investors evaded government controls to move more than $600 billion out of the country last year and the outflow is increasing, fueling economic and political risks as communist leaders prepare for a handover of power, a Washington-based monitoring group says.


    Citigroup fined $2 million over Facebook IPO

    The top securities regulator in Massachusetts has fined Citigroup $2 million for failing to supervise analysts who improperly disclosed confidential information about Facebook's initial public offering.

    Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer gives his presentation at the launch of Microsoft Windows 8, in New York, Thursday, Oct. 25, 2012. Windows 8 is the most dramatic overhaul of the personal computer market’s dominant operating system in 17 years.

    Where do I click, again? A guide to Windows 8

    With the launch of Windows 8, buyers are about to discover a computing experience unlike anything they've seen before. Here's a guide to getting past some of the hurdles. The main thing to know is that Windows 8 is designed especially for touch-screen computers, to make desktops and laptops work more like tablets. But Windows 8 will work with mouse and keyboard shortcuts, too. It'll take some getting used to, though.

    Samsung’s third-quarter net profit nearly doubled over a year earlier to a record high propelled by strong sales of Galaxy phones that helped widen its lead over rivals.

    Samsung logs record high profit in 3Q

    Strong sales of Galaxy phones propelled Samsung's quarterly profit to a record high, but its shares dropped Friday on the prospect its growth will slow in an increasingly crowded smartphone market. The South Korean company, which raked in more than half of its profit and revenue from its mobile communications business, said its Galaxy S III and Galaxy Note II smartphones will help sustain its earnings momentum in the final quarter of the year.


    RadioMD.com offers 24/7 live, on-demand health programs

    Kukec's eBuzz column features Rolling Meadows-based RadioMD.com, a web site that offers streaming talk shows on health issues along with other content. A beta version is up now and the official launch is expected next week.

    Appliances at Orville’s Home Appliances store in Amherst, N.Y. The government’s snapshot Friday, Oct. 26, 2012, of the U.S. economy’s growth will be its last before Americans choose a president in 11 days.

    U.S. economic growth up to still-modest 2 pct. rate

    The U.S. economy grew at a slightly faster 2 percent annual rate from July through September, buoyed by more spending by consumers and the federal government. Growth accelerated from the 1.3 percent rate in the April-June quarter, the Commerce Department said Friday. The report is the last snapshot of economic growth before Americans choose a president in 11 days.

    A court in Italy has convicted former Premier Silvio Berlusconi of tax fraud and sentenced him to four years in prison.

    Italy court convicts Berlusconi of tax evasion

    A court in Italy has convicted former Premier Silvio Berlusconi of tax fraud and sentenced him to four years in prison.

    Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co. vehicle tires sit in a storage room at Keister’s Tire Center in Kewanee, Illinois.

    Goodyear Tire 3Q net income falls 32 percent

    Goodyear Tire says its third-quarter net income fell by nearly one third as lower tire sales in Europe offset cost savings.The company's results came in below Wall Street predictions. And Goodyear says it will make more cost cuts because of economic uncertainty.


    Comcast 3Q profit, sales top Street on upbeat subs

    Cable giant Comcast Corp., the nation's largest provider of TV and high-speed Internet services, more than doubled its net income in the third quarter, helped by fewer cancelations of video service than expected and by breaking even on the expensive-to-produce London Olympics.


    Toyota global vehicle sales up 28 pct in Jan-Sept

    Toyota sold 7.4 million vehicles around the world in the first nine months of the year, up 28 percent from a year earlier, but its strong growth faces headwinds from a sales plunge in China that could unseat it as the world's top automaker.

    The “Start” icon is displayed on a Microsoft Corp. Surface tablet computer during an event in New York, U.S., on Thursday.

    Windows 8 to bridge gap between PC, mobile device

    Microsoft launched a radical redesign of its world-dominating Windows operating system Thursday, introducing a touch-enabled interface that attempts to bridge the gap between personal computers and fast-growing mobile devices powered by the company's fiercest competitors.

    Maureen Sullivan Stemberg, left, ex-wife of Staples founder Tom Stemberg, and her lawyer Gloria Allred, stand in Norfolk County Probate Court Thursday, in Canton, Mass.

    In testimony, Romney was skeptical of Staples

    In newly unsealed testimony related to Staples founder Tom Stemberg's divorce, Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney says he was initially skeptical of the idea for Staples, the office supply chain he lauds as a business success story that he helped create.

    A woman pedals pasts an electronic stock board outside a securities firm in Tokyo, Friday

    World stocks fall ahead of U.S. growth data

    World stock markets fell Friday ahead of the U.S. government's estimate of economic growth in the latest quarter, which is expected to show improvement but not enough to jolt the global economy out of its doldrums.Economists expect the government to report growth at an annual rate of 1.8 percent for the third quarter. While that would be an improvement over 1.3 percent in the April-June quarter, it would not be enough to reduce unemployment perceptibly or increase U.S. demand for imports.

    Peyton Manning

    Manning gets slice of pizza market in new hometown

    Now Broncos fans can call the audibles while Peyton Manning cheers them on. Pepperoni! No, make that sausage! Manning became the newest franchisee for Papa John's pizza, signing a deal to own 21 stores in the Denver area Friday, the same day the pizza maker also announced it had signed a multi-year contract to continue as the official pizza of the NFL and the Super Bowl. Terms were not disclosed.

    Employees cheer customers as they enter a newly-opened Apple Store in Wangfujing shopping district in Beijing.

    Apple misses Wall Street 4Q expectations

    Apple missed Wall Street earnings expectations for the second straight quarter, as iPad sales fell short of analyst forecasts.The slowdown in the growth of iPad sales was not unexpected, as the rumor mill correctly predicted that Apple Inc. would launch a smaller, cheaper iPad. It announced that device, the iPad Mini, on Tuesday.

    An 1879 tinfoil phonograph at the Museum of Innovation and Science, on Wednesday, Oct. 24, 2012, in Schenectady, N.Y. Researchers have digitized what experts say is the oldest reco.

    Soundtrack to history: 1878 Edison audio unveiled

    SCHENECTADY, N.Y. — It’s scratchy, lasts only 78 seconds and features the world’s first recorded blooper.The modern masses can now listen to what experts say is the oldest playable recording of an American voice and the first-ever capturing of a musical performance, thanks to digital advances that allowed the sound to be transferred from flimsy tinfoil to computer.The recording was originally made on a Thomas Edison-invented phonograph in St. Louis in 1878.At a time when music lovers can carry thousands of digital songs on a player the size of a pack of gum, Edison’s tinfoil playback seems prehistoric. But that dinosaur opens a key window into the development of recorded sound.“In the history of recorded sound that’s still playable, this is about as far back as we can go,” said John Schneiter, a trustee at the Museum of Innovation and Science in Schenectady, where it was played Thursday night in the city where Edison helped found the General Electric Co.The recording opens with a 23-second cornet solo of an unidentified song, followed by a man’s voice reciting “Mary Had a Little Lamb” and “Old Mother Hubbard.” The man laughs at two spots during the recording, including at the end, when he recites the wrong words in the second nursery rhyme.“Look at me; I don’t know the song,” he says.When the recording was played using modern technology during a presentation Thursday at a nearby theater, it was likely the first time it had been played at a public event since it was created during an Edison phonograph demonstration held June 22, 1878, in St. Louis, museum officials said.The recording was made on a sheet of tinfoil, 5 inches wide by 15 inches long, placed on the cylinder of the phonograph Edison invented in 1877 and began selling the following year.A hand crank turned the cylinder under a stylus that would move up and down over the foil, recording the sound waves created by the operator’s voice. The stylus would eventually tear the foil after just a few playbacks, and the person demonstrating the technology would typically tear up the tinfoil and hand the pieces out as souvenirs, according to museum curator Chris Hunter.Popping noises heard on this recording are likely from scars left from where the foil was folded up for more than a century.“Realistically, once you played it a couple of times, the stylus would tear through it and destroy it,” he said.Only a handful of the tinfoil recording sheets are known to known to survive, and of those, only two are playable: the Schenectady museum’s and an 1880 recording owned by The Henry Ford museum in Michigan.Hunter said he was able to determine just this week that the man’s voice on the museum’s 1878 tinfoil recording is believed to be that of Thomas Mason, a St. Louis newspaper political writer who also went by the pen name I.X. Peck.Edison company records show that one of his newly invented tinfoil phonographs, serial No. 8, was sold to Mason for $95.50 in April 1878, and a search of old newspapers revealed a listing for a public phonograph program being offered by Peck on June 22, 1878, in St. Louis, the curator said.A woman’s voice says the words “Old Mother Hubbard,” but her identity remains a mystery, he said. Three weeks after making the recording, Mason died of sunstroke, Hunter said.A Connecticut woman donated the tinfoil to the Schenectady museum in 1978 for an exhibit on the 100th anniversary of the founding of the Edison company that later merged with another to form GE. The woman’s father had been an antiques dealer in the Midwest and counted the item among his favorites, Hunter said.In July, Hunter brought the Edison tinfoil recording to California’s Berkeley Lab, where researchers such as Carl Haber have had success in recent years restoring some of the earliest audio recordings.

    Peanut grower Armond Morris examines peanuts ready for harvest at his Irwinville, Ga., farm .

    Amid bumper crop, families could get PB&J break

    Choosy moms and dads may be packing more PB&J in lunches this winter, when the cost of a jar of Jif or Skippy is expected to fall even as other grocery prices rise.Peanut butter prices soared last year after a drought and high heat in the Southeast, where most peanuts are grown. This year, that region got a break while farmers in most of the rest of the United State suffered huge losses in the widest drought in decades.

Life & Entertainment

    Gary Clark Jr.’s “Blak and Blu”

    Clark’s derivative on full-length debut

    The much-anticipated first full-length album from guitar wiz Gary Clark Jr. opens with ... a horn fanfare. That takes brass. Clark has built a considerable reputation on the strength of his bluesy fretwork, but "Blak and Blu" is no guitar showcase. Instead, Clark engages in confusing genre hopping, with most of the 13 tunes disappointingly derivative.

    Film critic Gene Shalit, 86, faces a charge of driving to endanger after his vehicle struck a utility pole and came to rest against a home in Lenox, Mass., Wednesday, according to police.

    Gene Shalit cited after car hits pole in Mass.

    Television movie critic Gene Shalit faces a charge of driving to endanger after his vehicle struck a utility pole and came to rest against a home in western Massachusetts. Lenox police say the 86-year-old Shalit told Chief Stephen O'Brien, who was first on the scene of Wednesday afternoon's crash, that he fell asleep at the wheel.

    Just in time for Halloween, "500 Clown Frankenstein" returns with an expanded, rotating cast that includes co-founder and co-creator Adrian Danzig, far right.

    Local theater: 500 Clown revives 'Frankenstein'

    Just in time for Halloween, 500 Clown Theatre revives “500 Clown Frankenstein,” its unique distillation of Mary Shelley’s novel, at Viaduct Theater. A rotating cast will perform the show in which a clown trio tries to construct Frankenstein’s lab and eventually his monster. Show co-creator and company co-founder Adrian Danzig directs the intensely physical play featuring Danzig, Pam Chermansky, Dean Evans, Jay Torrence and Leah Urzendowski.

    Joyce Becker Lee directs "Soul Sisters" for Waukegan's Clockwise Theatre.

    Mundelein director’s past helps her better understand ‘Soul Sisters’

    Director Joyce Becker Lee grew up in one of the only Jewish families in a small Wisconsin town. She remembers being called names in school. But Lee, who now lives in Mundelein, credits her past with helping her relate to the production she's currently directing for Waukegan's Clockwise Theatre: "Soul Sisters," a play about two women singers, one Jewish and one African American, and their struggles to understand each other.

    Taylor Swift branched out and worked with musicians she admired for “Red,” her latest album.

    'Red' hot Taylor Swift riding high with new album, CMA nods

    If it's not officially the Season of Swift, it certainly is close. With her fourth album, “Red,” just out — and including “We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together,” the first tune she's placed at No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100 (though she's been in that slot six times on the magazine's country song chart) — Taylor Swift again is proving herself one of the most energetic, creative young talents in the entertainment world today.

    Singer-songwriter Melissa Etheridge challenged herself to play all the guitar parts on her new CD “4th Street Feeling.”

    Melissa Etheridge takes a look back in 12th album

    At 51, Melissa Etheridge isn't coasting on her accomplishments. The Grammy Award-winning singer-songwriter challenged herself to play all the guitar parts on her new album. "I kind of thought when I was 30 that you're as good as your going to get. And that's not true," she says. "I have gotten so much better and I'm celebrating it on this album."

    Sean Connery stars in “Dr. No, “ the first James Bond movie.

    After a half century, 007 still shaking up audiences and stirring passions

    Fifty years ago, "Dr. No" gave us Sean Connery as James Bond, Agent 007, a name and a number that have become synonymous with sex, violence, intrigue and spectacle. Only seven actors have played the 007 character, not counting numerous Bonds running amok in 1967's spoof "Casino Royale." What's the appeal of this dapper secret agent, whose way with wine, women and food has captivated generations of fans?

    Swedish House Mafia’s “Until Now”

    Swedish House Mafia’s CD is big, but flat

    Swedish House Mafia, a trio of electronic DJs and producers, have ruled mega-concert dance floors for a few years now. But a quandary for them has risen out of years of success: deliver more of the same or break new creative ground? With "Until Now," they've opted for the former.


    What’s at stake with mortgage deductions

    Limiting the homeowner mortgage interest deduction came up in two of the presidential debates, but specifics about who would be affected and how much they might lose in tax benefits were minimal. To put some rough numbers on the issue, here’s a quick primer on the mortgage interest deduction and related housing write-offs.

    Canadian jazz pianist and singer Diana Krall says she felt reinvigorated making her new CD “Glad Rag Doll.”

    Diana Krall escapes her music comfort zone

    Diana Krall says she felt reinvigorated making her new CD "Glad Rag Doll," which gave her a chance to escape the comfort zone of Great American Songbook standards on which the singer-pianist has built her reputation. "It's always exciting to do something where you surprise yourself and it's like, Wow, I didn't expect that,"' said Krall. "I felt it was time for me to do something which is about what I hear and I like, not a tribute to Nat Cole."

    Patrons play pool at J&D Sports Bar & Grill in Wauconda.

    J&D’s in Wauconda plays to its strengths

    There is a lot going on at J&D’s Sports Bar & Grill in Wauconda, a large and lively place to watch the game, shoot pool, play darts, quaff a beer or chow down on tasty, value-priced food.

    The houses in Buffalo Grove’s Mirielle neighborhood were built by Town and Country Homes in the late 1990s.

    Mirielle subdivision in Buffalo Grove boasts great schools

    The desirable Mirielle subdivision in Buffalo Grove features unusual home designs, award-winning schools and a good location near transportation. “These homes have unique, contemporary, open floor plans rather than the traditional Colonials,” said Anne Kaplan, broker with Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage.

    Nick Offerman, a veteran of the Chicago theater scene, juggles independent films with his role as Ron Swanson on NBC’s “Parks and Recreation.”

    ‘Parks and Recreation’ actor shows off his creative side

    If you like Ron Swanson on NBC’s “Parks and Recreation,” then you’ll like Nick Offerman, the actor who plays him. Offerman has the same deadpan delivery as his character, and he’s a guy’s guy, who loves carpentry.


    Buyer of foreclosed home fears bank will keep deposit

    Q. We are buying a home that was foreclosed by the bank. Our home inspector advised us to hire a roofing contractor, an electrician and air conditioner specialist. We've agreed topay for roof repairs, but the real estate agent for the bank won't permit us to hire contractors to look at the air conditioner. We don't know what to do, and we don't want to lose our deposit. What do you advise?

    The Didion House is nicknamed for author Joan Didion, whose family lived there. It has been remodeled and restored by its current owners, Julie and Christopher B. Dolan.

    Traces of author found in remodeled Didion House

    Located at the corner of T and 22nd streets, it's one of Sacramento's most eye-catching houses and the former home of one of the city's most famous residents: renowned author Joan Didion. It recently opened for its first public tour. "It's truly an amazing house," said Christine Weinstein of the Sacramento Old City Association.

    The cutting garden in the background is the origin of this bouquet.

    Cutting gardens can yield beauty inside and out

    Cut flower gardens are attractive options for those who don’t like removing the best blooms from their borders and beds for indoor display. The bouquets also open new avenues for creativity along with becoming something personal to share. And perhaps best: The cuttings can grow into a profitable sideline.



    Endorsement: ‘No” to illusion of pension reform

    A Daily Herald editorial urges a NO vote on a proposed constitutional amendment on the Nov. 6 ballot that pretends to offer pension reform but actually makes real reform harder to accomplish.


    Endorsements: Taxes for roads, police seems only choice in Winfield
    The Daily Herald recommends a YES vote on a yax increaae for roads and police in Winfield and a NO vote on video gambling there.


    A real fear in military: no Social Security
    A Gurnee letter to the editor: It is not right to ask these men and women to fight for and defend our country when they believe they won’t have any Social Security for their own retirement.


    Sente has been fiscally responsible
    A Lincolnshire letter to the editor: Illinois government must break from its past of overspending and corruption. That’s why I’m supporting Carol Sente for state representative over career politician and 14-year incumbent Sid Mathias. I hope you will join me.


    Cole takes action to help others
    A Gurnee letter to the editor: Some politicians talk about serving their representatives during election time. I want to tell you that Rep. Sandy Cole and her staff serve us 365 days a year. If you need any help from Illinois, do not hesitate to call her.


    Embarrassed about Walsh’s hypocrisy
    An Elgin letter to the editor: Hypocrisy is not a stranger to Joe Walsh. Like most Tea Party candidates, Walsh ran on Jobs, Jobs, Jobs, but once he made it to Washington, he and his Republican compatriots have spent a majority of their time working on ways to limit a woman's right to make her own health care decision and almost no time on bills that would create jobs.


    Kenyon gets results for Kane County
    A Batavia letter to the editor: When we cast our ballots, we cast them for people we believe most represent our values, someone who can bring their experience with them and provide results for the area they represent. Mike Kenyon is one such person.


    Walsh hardly David to Duckworth’s Goliath
    A Pingree Grove letter to the editor: Joe Walsh is an incumbent Congressman and recipient of significant external SuperPAC support and television advertising. Characterizing Mr. Walsh as David to Tammy Duckworth's Goliath is incongruous.


    Cheerleading has become risky sport
    A Glen Ellyn letter to the editor: As a former midget-league, high school and college cheerleader, I agree wholeheartedly with the recent policy made by the American Academy of Pediatrics proclaiming cheerleading has become a physically risky activity.


    Most up-and-coming member of Congress
    A Wheaton letter to the editor: Peter Roskam is running for reelection in the 6th Congressional District. He has represented residents of the Chicago suburbs for years and knows the needs of his constituents.


    Democracy rests in your hands
    A Glen Ellyn letter to the editor: The League of Women Voters of Glen Ellyn encourages all citizens to vote this November. The outcome of the election will affect your earnings and savings, health care quality and costs, environment, energy costs, and security. It will impact our world, our country and our community.


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