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Daily Archive : Thursday October 24, 2013

News

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    Eric Stallworth Jr.

    Prosecutors want joint trial in Aurora rape case

    Kane County prosecutors want a joint trial for two men who are accused of sexually assaulting an intoxicated Joliet woman near Aurora University in August 2012. The attorneys for Eric Stallworth Jr., 23, and Corderro Pollard, 23, object to a joint trial. Prosecutors say they acted together against the victim and a judge may consider the effect of multiple trials on the victim.

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    1 dead in 4-vehicle crash that closes Higgins Road

    One man dead, another injured in a motor vehicle crash on Higgins Road near I-90. Higgins Road will be closed until 8 a.m., according to authorities.

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    Police: Bartlett man misused committee's debit card

    Bartlett police said Thursday that a man was arrested earlier in the week for using the Bartlett 4th of July committee's debit card to withdraw money without permission.

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    Wadsworth home catches fire

    Fifteen water tankers responded to a fire in Wadsworth on Thursday morning.

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    Crash on Elgin-O’Hare closes some lanes

    A crash involving a truck and a car on the Elgin O'Hare Expressway causes some lane blockage

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    Heriberto Viramontes

    Jury finds man guilty in baseball bat attack

    A Cook County jury deliberated a little more than three hours before finding a Chicago man guilty Thursday in the baseball bat beating of two women, including an exchange student from Northern Ireland who suffered such severe brain injuries that she is now unable to walk and can barely speak.

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    The Fritz Duda Co.’s 602 acres near Barrington Hills is on the market for $17 million. The Dallas-based company and the village waged a long and intense legal fight that led to much of the property’s deannexation from Barrington Hills.

    Developer to sell McHenry County land near Barrington Hills

    A 602-acre property, most of which was disconnected from Barrington Hills during a long, intense legal fight that began early last decade, is being put up for sale by its would-be developer. The Fritz Duda Co. is asking for $17 million for the jaggedly bordered undeveloped land at Spring Creek and Haegers Bend roads in McHenry County, along Barrington Hills’ border with Algonquin.

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    Daily Herald file photo Expect more work on I-90 in 2014 as the Illinois tollway revs up a 15-year construction program.

    Tollway to spend $1.4 billion on road, bridge projects

    The tollway's new budget proposal includes $1.4 billion for capital - the largest chunk of change ever. Work in 2014 involves more I-90 improvements and pouring concrete on the Elgin-O'Hare extension that includes new bridges to I-290.

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    Casino operators in Illinois say they are losing revenue to casinos in neighboring states by not staying open 24 hours a day.

    Gaming board won’t let casinos stay open 24 hours

    Gamblers at Illinois’ 10 casinos must take a break whether they like it or not after the state’s gaming board decided Thursday not to allow them to stay open around the clock. Gaming Board Chairman Aaron Jaffe said at a meeting that a request to allow casinos open 24 hours a day — two hours longer than current operating hours — had been denied.

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    Wheeling High School seniors Alex Lopez, left, and Alfredo Rocha explain nano technology equipment to Secretary of Education Arne Duncan, who toured the school’s new nano technology lab Thursday.

    Duncan inspired, amazed by Wheeling High School lab

    After visiting Wheeling High School’s new nano technology laboratory Thursday, U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan said he wants to figure out how to replicate the program at schools across the country. Duncan said he was amazed and inspired by the lab, the first of its kind at an American public high school.

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    Andrew Slavitt, group executive vice president for Optum/QSSI, listens at right as Cheryl Campbell, senior vice president of CGI Federal, testifies on Capitol Hill Thursday. The hearing heard from contractors that built the federal government’s health care websites.

    Website contractors point fingers at Obama administration

    Contractors who built the web portal for the Obama administration’s health insurance marketplace said Thursday the site’s crippling problems trace back to insufficient testing and changes that government officials made just prior to going live.

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    Associated Press German Chancellor Angela Merkel using her mobile phone at the German Federal Parliament Bundestag in Berlin.

    Merkel: U.S. spying has shattered allies’ trust

    European leaders united in anger as they attended a summit overshadowed by reports of widespread U.S. spying on its allies — allegations German Chancellor Angela Merkel said had shattered trust in the Obama administration and undermined the crucial trans-Atlantic relationship.

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    Chicago not collecting much on marijuana tickets

    Chicago officials say the city has collected only 21 percent of the $310,755 in fines imposed by tickets issued for possessing small amounts of marijuana.

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    Sarah Ball, a victim of cyber bullying during her high school years, at her home Wednesday.

    Poll: Youth online abuse falling but prevalent

    More young people are reaching out to family members after being harassed or taunted online, and it’s helping. At least a little. A poll released Thursday by The Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research and MTV found incidents of “digital abuse” are still prevalent but declining somewhat.

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    Aledo High School football player Ryan Newsom carries the ball of a game against Arlington Heights High School on Sept. 27. Aledo won, 84-7. On Oct. 18, Aledo defeated Western Hills by a score of 91-0, prompting bullying complaints from parents of players on the losing team.

    Have mercy? Not in Texas high school football

    No one likes a bully. So when a recent Texas high school football game ended in a score of 91-0, one angry parent filed a complaint alleging the contest had crossed the line from tough loss to unlawful torment. In a state where football is king, school investigators found no bullying. But the blowout has spurred deep discussion over sportsmanship and whether it’s time to enact a “mercy rule.”

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    Royal Airs Drum & Bugle Corps makes Hoffman Estates home

    Anyone who has an interest in joining a local drum and bugle corps — or anyone who just wants to listen to some peppy music — is welcome to attend the grand opening for the Royal Airs Drum & Bugle Corps’ new home in Hoffman Estates on Saturday. “We’re glad to be in Hoffman Estates,” Corps Director Rhonda Schock said . “We’re looking forward to being in all the festivals that Hoffman Estates has.”

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    Kuhn Kim

    Lawyers plan insanity defense in Kim trial

    Defense attorneys for a Wilmette man charged with robbing and holding a Barrington Hills couple and their adult son at gunpoint confirmed Thursday they will pursue an insanity defense. Kuhn Kim, 28, is on trial in Rolling Meadows for home invasion, aggravated kidnapping, burglary and other charges. If convicted, he could face up to 30 years in prison.

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    Hannah Andrzejewski

    Lisle police still have no leads on missing teen

    Lisle police searching for a missing 16-year-old girl still don’t have any leads as to her whereabouts, authorities said Thursday. Hannah Andrzejewski last was seen about 2:30 p.m. Tuesday around Lockwood and Archer avenues near Chicago’s Midway Airport.

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    Schaumburg man accused of stabbing puppy with spike

    A 75-year-old Schaumburg man has been charged with animal cruelty after authorities say he stabbed a 10-month-old puppy in the chest with a metal spike they say he fashioned for that purpose. A Cook County judge set bail at $10,000 Wednesday for Anthony Haynes of the 100 block of Blackhawk Drive.

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    Mary Lou Wehrli

    Wehrli joins DuPage Forest Preserve president race

    For the first time in 20 years, an incumbent DuPage County Forest Preserve president is not seeking re-election and the vacancy is drawing interest from at least half of the district’s six commissioners. Mary Lou Wehrli of Naperville on Thursday became the second candidate to announce plans to run for the district’s presidency in the March 18 Republican primary to replace the retiring D. “Dewey”...

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    North Aurora looks at future housing needs

    North Aurora leaders learned what type of housing regional planners believe the town will need by 2040, as a study was presented Monday. But one trustee questioned whether the study's true aim was just to get the village to increase lower-priced housing.

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    Teens charged in robbery, beating of pizza deliveryman

    Two Elgin teenagers were arrested early Friday morning in Elgin after they punched and kicked a pizza deliveryman to steal pizza and other items the night before, authorities said. Elgin Police Cmdr. Ana Lalley said the two were charged with felony armed robbery and felony vehicular invasion.

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    Des Plaines Scout building bocce courts for seniors

    Those who frequent the Frisbie Senior Center in Des Plaines will soon be able to play bocce ball on a new outdoor patio thanks to a local Boy Scout working on an Eagle service project. The patio and bocce ball courts are taking shape on the east side of the senior center building at 52 E. Northwest Highway.

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    David B. Smith

    David Smith remembered fondly by all

    In East Dundee, the name David Smith is synonymous with public service, because he was the village’s longtime police chief, its first village administrator and the director of the QuadCom emergency dispatch center in Dundee Township. Smith, 64, died Monday at his East Dundee home after a short battle with cancer.

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    Lake Zurich government should support and expand the Rock the Block all-ages evening street party that debuted Sept. 14, according to a downtown action plan. Music, food, beer, wine and more attracted an estimated 5,000 visitors to Main Street, between Old Rand Road and Church Street.

    Lake Zurich has cost-effective ideas for downtown action plan

    Lake Zurich has a six-point plan designed to spur downtown redevelopment, which includes recommendations to continue enhancing the area's appearance and offering special events to attract visitors.

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    The hiring process for high-level Kane County jobs will occur mostly behind closed doors if the county board approves a change requested by County Chairman Chris Lauzen.

    County board committee on same page with confidential hiring plan

    Much of the initial apprehension about Kane County Chairman Chris Lauzen’s plan to add more confidentiality to his hiring process evaporated Wednesday. The initial committee examining the plan agreed to create a three-phase hiring process. Two of the phases would occur in total secrecy. If approved, the policy would undo county code put in place last year to address the lawsuit by Jim MacRunnels.

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    Fox Valley police reports
    DeAngelo L. Brown, 26, of Elgin, was arrested Wednesday and later charged with battery after a victim reported Brown punched him in the face, according to a police report.

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    Sandra Lopez

    Jury finds Gurnee woman guilty of Park City home invasion, armed robbery

    A Gurnee woman was found guilty Thursday of breaking into a Park City trailer home and robbing two women inside a knife point. A Lake County jury ruled Sandra Lopez, 43, was guilty on three counts of home invasion and two counts of armed robbery for conning her way inside the home in 1999 by posing as a city employee.

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    A Nissan Leaf charges at an electric vehicle charging station in Portland, Ore. The governors of eight states, including California and New York, pledged Thursday to get 3.3 million zero-emission vehicles on roadways by 2025 in an effort to curb greenhouse gas pollution.

    8 states join forces to promote clean cars

    Eight states, including California and New York, pledged Thursday to work together to dramatically multiply the number of zero-emission cars on the nation’s roads by speeding the construction of charging stations and other infrastructure.

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    Chicago physics professor named president of Caltech

    The California Institute of Technology has announced the appointment of physicist Thomas F. Rosenbaum as its new president. Rosenbaum is currently the provost and John T. Wilson Distinguished Service Professor of Physics at the University of Chicago.

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    Joseph Berrios

    Assessor denies any role in bribery case

    Cook County Assessor Joe Berrios is denying accusations that surfaced in a federal bribery trial claiming he took part in property tax adjustment deals. Berrios hasn’t been charged with a crime.

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    Quinn says more work needed on gun sentences bill

    Gov. Pat Quinn says he favors a “comprehensive approach” when it comes to a bill that toughens gun crime sentences. He told reporters Thursday that a bill proposing mandatory minimum sentences sponsored by state Rep. Mike Zalewski is “by no means a final product” but would not specify how he’d change it.

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    Quinn: Veto session valuable to ‘lay foundation’

    Gov. Pat Quinn says he’s not discouraged that lawmakers came away from two days of their fall veto session without tackling any of the major issues on their agenda.

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    Chicago alderwoman proposes $25 bicycle fee

    A Chicago alderwoman wants to charge a $25 licensing fee for bicycle owners and require them to take an hourlong safety class. Pat Dowell’s proposal could generate up to $10 million a year if 400,000 cyclists buy the license.

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    Emanuel says he’ll back Quinn for governor

    Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel says there’s no question he will back Gov. Pat Quinn’s re-election bid, despite his friendship with a Republican challenger.

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    2 seniors join state hall of fame

    wo Illinois residents have been inducted into the state’s Senior Hall of Fame. Department on Aging Director John K. Holton says 85-year-old Philip Carlin of Chicago and 88-year-old Russell Dohner of Rushville were honored for their lifelong contributions to their careers and communities.

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    Daniel Clark

    Naperville man gets 10 years for deadly I-290 crash

    Family members of a man killed in a drunken driving crash in Addison said they felt some measure of closure Thursday after the driver who caused the accident was sentenced to a decade behind bars. At the same time, they said they're praying for the defendant and his family. "This was not intentional. He didn't set out to kill my son," the victim's mother said.

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    Mundelein High Principal Anthony Kroll

    Anthony Kroll named Mundelein High’s principal

    Four months after being named Mundelein High School's interim principal, Anthony Kroll can drop the "interim" from his title. Kroll, who's spent his entire educational career at Mundelein High, has been awarded a three-year contract to lead the school. He'll be paid $160,000 a year, retroactively effective July 1.

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    GOP gubernatorial candidates visit Rosemont

    The four Republican candidates for governor will appear at a conservative conference next weekend in Rosemont. The Restore Illinois Summit, a gathering of the Americans for Prosperity Foundation — Illinois, will host state Sen. Bill Brady, state Sen. Kirk Dillard, Bruce Rauner and Treasurer Dan Rutherford.

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    Actress and author Octavia Spencer speaks to students Thursday at Young Elementary School in Aurora. The Oscar-winning actress, who was in the area to promote her new children’s book, urged students to “pay attention to everything” and “dream big.”

    Oscar-winning actress to Aurora students: Dream big

    Like any good actress and author, Octavia Spencer knows how to connect with her audience. Take a gym packed with students, for instance. “How many of you have ever done a book report before?” Spencer asked. “That’s kind of like what writing a book and talking to you about it is. Do you all like book reports?”

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    Road closures starting Friday in Elgin

    Drivers will have to contend with about a week of intermittent closures starting Friday at McLean Boulevard and Route 20 in Elgin. The Illinois Department of Transportation is performing a $50 million reconstruction of that interchange.

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    Elgin man gets 30 years in prison for drugs, guns

    A fomer Elgin man was sentenced to 30 years in prison Wednesday following his July conviction of drug and gun charges. Joel Rivas, 35, was arrested in 2010 along with a co-conspirator who pleaded guilty and received a 20-year prison sentence.

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    Mount Prospect gas station sells winning lottery ticket

    A Mount Prospect gas station sold a grand-prize winning ticket for the Wednesday evening Lucky Day Lotto drawing, meaning someone in the area could be $150,000 richer.

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    Arlington Heights food drive under way

    Collection boxes are now in place at locations across Arlington Heights for the 4th annual Arlington Food Drive. Sponsored by Lavelle Law, Ltd. the drive will support the Wheeling Township Food Pantry with donations being accepted through Monday, Nov. 25.

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    Halloween party to benefit WACO children’s charity

    The fifth annual Spooktacular Halloween Party benefiting the Woodfield Area Children’s Organization (WACO) will start at 6 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 30 at Schaumburg Ale House, 1817 W. Golf Road in Schaumburg. The full $5 cover charge goes to WACO to help kids from low-income families in the region.

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    Melrose Pyrotechnics will continue to handle Buffalo Grove’s festival fireworks for at least another three years.

    Buffalo Grove concerned over lack of bids for projects

    The lack of competitive bids for festival fireworks and other contracts has Buffalo Grove trustees concerned they are not attracting enough interest. “If we’re not getting participation, then we don’t know that there is a competitive environment out there that’s leading to the best possible prices," said Trustee Jeff Berman.

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    Mount Prospect leaders are discussing a $6.5 million bond issue as well as fee and tax hikes to address a lengthy backlog on street repairs. The hikes are expected to provide the village with an additional $2.1 million a year for street maintenance.

    Mount Prospect considers bonds, fee hikes to fund road repairs

    Mount Prospect will consider issuing bonds, raising the village’s vehicle sticker fee, increasing trash collection charges and hiking motor fuel taxes to fund repairs to more than 13 miles of streets. The plan discussed by village board members this week would raise $2.1 million in new money annually to fund the street maintenance program and calls for a $6.5 million bond issue to address a...

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    Daily Herald File Photo Speed limits will bump up in the countryside in sections of I-90, I-88 and I-94.

    Tollway OKs 70 mph on rural sections of road

    The Illinois tollway will increase speeds to 70 mph at some less-populated locations this January, including a portion of I-94 in Lake County. You already go 70 mph on the Tri-State? Well, stop it, officials said, noting lower speeds in urban areas are the law. Who will benefit from the changes? NIU, for starters.

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    Nicole Evans

    Bail set for Elmhurst woman charged in low-speed chase

    Bail was set at $50,000 Thursday for an Elmhurst woman accused of leading a low-speed police chase through Bensenville, Elk Grove Village and surrounding communities. Nicole Evans, 30, faces charges of aggravated fleeing and eluding, aggravated assault, criminal damage to government-supported property and driving under the influence of alcohol.

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    Mary R. Kenney, executive director of the Illinois Housing Development Authority, speaks to public and private partners celebrating the groundbreaking Wednesday of the 91-unit Mount Prospect Horizon Senior Living Community.

    Mount Prospect leaders celebrate new senior housing

    Local, county and state leaders gathered Wednesday in Mount Prospect to celebrate construction of Mount Prospect Horizon, a development that will provide affordable housing to area seniors. The facility, scheduled to open next year, has been 10 years in the making, officials said.

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    This undated picture provided by the Weisskopf Museum shows Aviation Pioneer Gustave Whitehead with daughter Rose in front of his “No. 21”.

    Three states tussle over bragging rights to 1st flight

    Ohio and North Carolina are drawing a line on the tarmac in the debate over who was the first to fly. Connecticut Gov. Dannel P. Malloy signed a law last summer saying German-born aviator and Connecticut resident Gustave Whitehead was the first to make a powered flight.

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    Festival of Trees Nov. 9 to help adults in need

    Residents of Barrington and Hanover townships may not be aware that they’re also served by the Kane County-based Ecker Center for Mental Health, which addresses the needs of low-income adults. It’s that Cook County portion of the center’s service area that will host its annual, holiday-themed fundraiser next month.

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    State treasurer in North Barrington today

    The Illinois state treasurer’s office will help local residents learn whether they have any unclaimed cash or property held by the state from 4 to 5:30 p.m. today, Oct. 24, in the lower level of North Barrington village hall, 111 Old Barrington Road in North Barrington. Illinois State Treasurer Dan Rutherford himself will be present from 5 to 5:30 p.m.

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    How much is enough? Enough

    How much is enough? Our Ken Potts poses the question and considers how a billionaire's and Mother Teresa's answers might differ. And with help from a Chinese philosopher, he develops an answer that could help guide us all.

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    Obama calls for immigration law by end of the year

    President Barack Obama called on Congress Thursday to finish work on an immigration overhaul by the end of the year, a lofty goal that will be difficult to meet given the staunch opposition of many House Republicans.

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    Volunteers hope to collect more than 40,000 pounds of food Saturday during Wheaton’s annual “Stuff-a-Truck with Food” drive as part of the city’s Make a Difference Day celebration.

    Wheaton has several “Make a Difference” day events

    Whether it’s cleaning a park, stuffing a truck with food or packing school supplies, people all over Wheaton will be making a difference Saturday. What began 12 years ago as a campaign to encourage people to help others by raking a neighbor’s leaves or donating blood has evolved into hundreds of volunteers banding together at events and drives throughout the month, culminating Saturday.

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    The Bradbury collection arrives in Waukegan on Wednesday morning.

    Waukegan library handing out Bradbury's copies of 'Fahrenheit 451'

    Ray Bradbury fans have a chance Friday to bring home a piece of his estate if they attend a festival in his honor hosted by the Waukegan Public Library. The first 100 guests at the library's eighth annual Ray Bradbury Storytelling Festival on Friday will receive copies of "Fahrenheit 451" that were found in Bradbury's garage in Los Angeles.

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    Illinois Senator Dick Durbin

    Durbin: GOP leader told Obama 'I cannot even stand to look at you'

    Illinois Senator Dick Durbin said on his Facebook page this weekend that a top House Republican leader told President Barack Obama, “I cannot even stand to look at you” during negotiations over the government shutdown. “Many Republicans searching for something to say in defense of the disastrous shutdown strategy will say President Obama just doesn't try hard enough to...

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    In this May 24, 2000 photo, Patsy Ramsey and her husband, John, parents of JonBenet Ramsey, during a news conference in Atlanta regarding their lie-detector examinations for the murder of their daughter.

    Judge orders release of JonBenet grand jury docs

    A Colorado judge has ordered the release of grand jury documents related to the 1996 killing of 6-year-old JonBenet Ramsey. Boulder District Attorney spokeswoman Catherine Olguin declined to say whether documents that will be released include an indictment against parents John and Patsy Ramsey.

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    Burmese people use their cell phones amidst the tightly packed enclave of video production houses, movie-poster design studios and worse-for-wear apartment buildings that serves as the tattered ground zero of the Burmese movie industry, in downtown Yangon, Myanmar.

    Bad guy blues: Myanmar villains struggle to get by

    In a dimly lit alley on a cramped side street of a teeming Southeast Asian city, the bad guys cluster together, plotting their next move. There is A Yaing Min, the “King of Cruelty,” who twirls his mustache as he talks and cultivates a pointy beard with a pointed message: Mess with me, and I will end you. There is Myint Kyi, who has been dispatching enemies — typically with spears — since 1958.

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    The 1941 Cadillac owned by the Duke and Duchess of Windsor. Dubbed “The Duchess.” The limousine was custom designed by General Motors for the former king of England and his American wife.

    Duke of Windsor’s Cadillac coming to NYC auction

    A 1941 Cadillac custom-built for the Duke and Duchess of Windsor is heading for a New York City auction.Dubbed “The Duchess,” the limousine features rose-colored broadcloth upholstery, four jewelry cases and three cigar lighters. It’s estimated to fetch between $500,000 to $800,000. It is being sold Nov. 21 by Sotheby’s and RM Auctions.

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    In a Friday, April 26, 2013 photo, Michael Skakel, right, talks to Jessica Santos, one of his defense attorneys, during his appeal at State Superior Court in Vernon, Conn.

    Kennedy cousin Skakel to seek release on bond

    With a new trial ordered for Michael Skakel, a defense lawyer for the Kennedy cousin serving time in the 1975 slaying of a neighbor said he will seek his release from prison on bond. Skakel’s conviction was set aside Wednesday by a Connecticut judge, Thomas Bishop, who ruled that Skakel’s trial attorney failed to adequately represent him when he was found guilty in 2002.

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    Eric Kaplan, left, and Alex Lopez, both seniors at Wheeling High School, look at samples of graphite using equipment in the school's new nano technology lab.

    Wheeling High to show off nano lab to Duncan, Quinn

    When U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan and Gov. Pat Quinn visit Wheeling High School on Thursday, they will see how the students have been working with some very small things to make a big difference in their education. The officials will tour Wheeling's new nano technology lab, the first of its kind in a public high school. “It's hard for kids to see potential careers unless they are...

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    Dawn Patrol: DUI victim’s mom forgives driver; car chase charges

    Elmhurst woman faces slew of charges in police chase. DUI victim’s mom forgives driver for fatal Addison crash. Illinois lawmakers to revive talks on new casinos. Wrestlers guilty of damaging Naperville mayor’s sculpture Navy wants sailors to connect with families for holiday. Donations leading to Batavia ballfield improvements. Red Sox beat Cardinals in World Series opener. Bulls’ Rose...

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    Elgin won't get more electric vehicle chargers until sponsors step up

    Elgin won't be getting more free electric vehicle charging stations until sponsors step up to cover ongoing operational costs. The city has one free charging station for electric vehicles and plug-in hybrids in the Centre of Elgin's parking deck. “Who are we trying to impress here?" said council member John Prigge. "Is someone going to write an article about us? Is someone going to give us...

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    The former Lakemoor village hall on Route 120 will be demolished, erasing an image village officials have been trying to change.

    Lakemoor ready to raze old village hall

    Lakemoor officials will be accepting bids to demolish the former village hall in the center of town on busy Route 120. And it won't be missed. "Trust me, the employees have been wanting to do it themselves," said Village Administrator David Alarcon. Village leaders the past few years have been working to upgrade the village's image and long-range vision.

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    The speed limit for cyclists Lake Arlington says 8 mph, but many at an Arlington Heights Park District on Wednesday said the cyclists still go too fast.

    Many still unhappy with Lake Arlington trail changes

    While the Arlington Heights Park District is trying to find a way to make the path safer around Lake Arlington, comments at a public meeting on Wednesday made it clear that one answer will likelly please everyone. “I wasn't surprised by the fatality, but I was saddened by it,” said Susan McGready. “I don't know how the park district can solve this, but I'm thankful to them for...

Sports

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    Miami Heat forward LeBron James, here celebrating his team’s second straight NBA title, will begin his quest for a three-peat when the season opens Tuesday against the Bulls and Derrick Rose. The Heat defeated the San Antonio Spurs 95-88 in Game 7 to win last season’s title.

    Bulls remain best choice to beat Heat

    With the Chicago Bulls 7-1 in Las Vegas to win the NBA Championship this year, Mike North thinks the race is really between the Miami Heat and the Bulls, but the Bulls will have to play a team game even with their all-star Derrick Rose because LeBron James is still the best right now.

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    Peyton Manning is on pace to throw for 5,863 yards.

    Manning slam dunk MVP of first half

    It's midseason awards time. John Dietz gives his midseason MVP, as well as the surprises and duds of the NFL's first seven weeks. In the 15 seasons I’ve been doing this column, there’s never been a bigger slam-dunk winner than Broncos QB Peyton Manning, who is putting up numbers you’d see if seasoned Madden video-game players went through an entire season on “rookie” level.

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    The resolution of Luol Deng's contract status rates a 7 on Mike McGraw's Bulls' Worry Meter

    Time to analyze Bulls' 'worry meter' readings

    The Bulls have been perfect during preseason so far. But since that means nothing in the long run, maybe it's better to pull out the Worry Meter and look at issues like Derrick Rose's recovery, Joakim Noah's injury and the pace of practice. On a scale of 1 (Thibodeau's preparation) to 10 (Carlos Boozer isolated against LeBron James), here's a look at where some current Bulls issues stand.

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    Washington running back Roy Helu breaks free and heads toward the end zone for a touchdown during the first half of a NFL game against the Bears in Landover, Md., Sunday.

    Worst defense in Bears history?

    Poor grades through seven games for the defense reflect some troubling numbers.The Bears are dead-last 32nd in average gain per pass allowed, 31st in sack percentage, 28th in points allowed and third-down efficiency, 27th in passing yards allowed, 26th in total yards allowed and 25th in rushing yards allowed.

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    Blackhawks goalie Nikolai Khabibulin (39) cannot stop a backhand goal from Tampa Bay Lightning right wing Martin St. Louis as Blackhawks defenseman Johnny Oduya (27) tries to guard the goal during the sudden death overtime period of a game Thursdayin Tampa, Fla.

    Hawks just happy to grab a point as Khabibulin struggles

    Blackhawks goalie Nikolai Khabibulin returned to the scene of the greatest accomplishment in his NHL career on Thursday night. This time the result was a little different. For only the second time since he led Tampa Bay to the Stanley Cup in 2004 with a tense Game 7 win over Calgary, Khabibulin faced the Lightning as a visitor on its home ice. But Khabibulin gave up 6 goals in a 6-5 loss to his former team in overtime.

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    Thursday’s girls tennis scoreboard
    High school varsity results from Thursday's girls tennis meets, as reported to the Daily Herald.

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    A Buccaneers fan displays the sentiment of many in Tampa. The Buccaneers have lost 12 of 13 dating back to last season, ratcheting up the pressure on second-year head coach Greg Schiano.

    Bucs remain winless after 31-13 loss to Panthers

    The downward spiral that has become the Tampa Bay Buccaneers’ season might not yet have hit bottom. Stagnant offense, special teams’ miscues and a defense unable to stop Carolina quarterback Cam Newton put the Bucs in a hole early in a 31-13 loss Thursday night.

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    Game video: West Aurora vs. Lake Park
    West Aurora takes on Lake Parkj Friday night in Week 9 action. Follow the game here with video from High School Cube, then come back later for the replay and highlights.

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    Game video: Warren vs. Lake Forest
    Warren takes on Lake Forest Friday night in Week 9 action. Follow the game here with video from High School Cube, then come back later for the replay and highlights.

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    Game video: Vernon Hills vs. Antioch
    Vernon Hills takes on Antioch Friday night in Week 9 action. Follow the game here with video from High School Cube, then come back later for the replay and highlights.

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    Game video: St. Viator vs. St. Patrick
    St. Viator takes on St. Patrick Friday night in Week 9 action. Follow the game here with video from High School Cube, then come back later for the replay and highlights.

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    Game video: St. Edward vs. St. Francis
    St. Edward takes on St. Francis Friday night in Week 9 action. Follow the game here with video from High School Cube, then come back later for the replay and highlights.

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    Game video: St. Charles East vs. Larkin
    St. Charles East takes on Larkin Friday night in Week 9 action. Follow the game here with video from High School Cube, then come back later for the replay and highlights.

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    Game video: Montini vs. Aurora Central Catholic
    Montini takes on Aurora Central Catholic Friday night in Week 9 action. Follow the game here with video from High School Cube then come back later for the replay and highlights.

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    Game video: Lake Zurich vs. Stevenson
    Lakje Zurich takes on Stevenson Friday night in Week 9 action. Follow the game here with video from High School Cube, then come back later for the replay and highlights.

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    Game video: Kaneland vs. Morris
    Kaneland takes on Morris Friday night in Week 9 action. Follow the game here with video from High School Cube, then come back later for the replay and highlights.

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    Game video: Huntley vs. Crystal Lake South
    Huntley takes on Crystal Lake South Friday night in Week 9 action. Follow the game here with video from High School Cube, then come back later for the replay and highlights.

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    Game video: Fremd vs. Conant
    Fremd takes on Conant Friday night in Week 9 action. Follow the game here with video from High School Cube, then come back later for the replay and highlights.

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    Game video: Carmel vs. Notre Dame
    Carmel takes on Niles Notre Dame Friday night in Week 9 action. Follow the game here with video from High School Cube, then come back later for the replay and highlights.

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    Game video: Wheaton Academy vs. Marian Central
    Wheaton Academy takes on Marian Central Friday night in Week 9 action. Follow the game here with video from High School Cube then come back later for the replay and highlights.

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    Game video: Barrington vs. Hoffman Estates
    Barrington takes on Hoffman Estates Friday night in Week 9 action. Follow the game here with video from High School Cube, then come back later for the replay and highlights.

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    Scouting Week 9 in the Fox Valley

    Previewing Week 9 football games in the Fox Valley

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    Ellie Lauderback, center, and Jess Terrill, right, celebrate with teammates after beating Hersey in Mid-Suburban League girls volleyball championship matchup.

    Barrington tops Hersey for MSL title

    The 41st edition of the Mid-Suburban League girls championship match brought together its most frequent visitors. Host Barrington and Hersey have a combined 34 appearances in the annual showcase event and were tied with most wins (10 apiece) when the match started. Using stellar defense and timely offense, the Fillies won their 11th title and second in three years under coach Rob Ridenour with a 25-19, 25-15 triumph on Thursday night.

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    Wolves drop Wild one in shootout

    DES MOINES, Iowa — The Chicago Wolves and Iowa Wild battled all the way into a shootout Thursday night. But the Wild outscored the Wolves to claim a 5-4 triumph at Wells Fargo Arena. The Wolves (3-3-0-1) received regulation goals from Shane Harper, Keith Aucoin, David Shields and Brent Regner in their first game against the Wild (4-1-0-0) and first shootout of the season.

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    Grayslake Central quarterback Alex Lennartz is making the most of, finally, a healthy, productive season.

    Head held high, healthy Lennartz leads Grayslake C.

    Now a senior and the starting quarterback for 4-4 Grayslake Central, which needs a win tonight against Woodstock (1-7) to have a chance to qualify for the playoffs, Alex Lennartz is enjoying a season in which he's finally healthy.

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    Libertyville’s Madeline Wagner returns the ball during the girls tennis state tournament at Prospect High School on Thursday.

    Warren’s Bihel plows ahead; Stevenson still in title hunt

    Sailing through first-round matches at the girls state tennis tournament has been anything but smooth for Warren sophomore Karyna Bihel, but she met her challenges Thursday. Stevenson also did all it wanted in the first day to stay in the team title hunt as it sits fourth with 21 points, behind defending champion Lake Forest (24) and Hinsdale Central and New Trier (22).

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    Tampa Bay Lightning left wing Ryan Malone (12) tries to catch Blackhawks left wing Brandon Saad (20) during the first period of a game on Thursday in Tampa, Fla.

    Lightning beat Hawks in OT

    Martin St. Louis scored at 1:16 of overtime and the Tampa Bay Lightning beat the Blackhawks 6-5 on Thursday night.

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    Scouting this weekend’s Tri-Cities football games
    Previews of Week 9 high school football games in the Tri-Cities coverage area

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    Crystal Lake South outlasts Crystal Lake Central

    Crystal Lake Central and Crystal Lake South entered Thursday’s Fox Valley Conference crossover battle of first place girls volleyball teams with a combined record of 62-6. Each team won its respective division with perfect 12-0 slates. So the match up between the area powers seemed set up to be a classic. It was. Valley champion Crystal Lake South was a little better, knocking off the host Tigers 25-23, 25-21 in 2 games.

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    Batavia doubles players Brooke Lefevre, left, and Sydnee Unterberg high-five after a point against Libertyville during the state tennis preliminaries at Prospect Thursday.

    West Aurora’s Stefancic reaches round of 16

    West Aurora senior Emily Stefancic had won first-round matches and played on the second day of the girls state tennis tournament in her three previous appearances. But the Northern Illinois-bound Stefancic had never put together the right combination of both to play in the championship round of 16. That changed Thursday as Stefancic, a 17-32 seed, won all three of her matches in straight sets at Palatine.

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    Waubonsie Valley spoils Batavia’s Senior Night

    Rachel Minarick knows all about Senior Night. Minarick and 4 of her Waubonsie Valley volleyball teammates celebrated Senior Night with a convincing victory over South Elgin earlier this week. On Thursday, the Warriors (28-7) put a damper on Batavia’s Senior Night festivities with a 25-12, 25-14 Upstate Eight Conference crossover road triumph.

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    Jacobs junior Josh Walker (1) picks up some yardage against Crystal Lake South in Week 6.

    This time, Dundee-Crown vs. Jacobs has added meaning

    The annual football game between District 300 rivals Dundee-Crown and Jacobs has always been important from a bragging rights perspective. However, the game traditionally held little meaning beyond district boundaries because neither program experienced much success through the years, let alone success in the same season. That makes Friday night’s game in Algonquin (7:15 p.m.) arguably the most important in the history of this 31-year old rivalry. It marks the first time Jacobs (6-2) and Dundee-Crown (6-2) have met when both are playoff bound. “It’s exciting because now we both have a lot of talent and a chance to do something in the playoffs,” Jacobs junior running back Josh Walker said. “There’s a lot more riding on this game.”

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    Girls volleyball/Fox Valley roundup

    Dundee-Crown d. Woodstock North: Kiana Mays had 7 kills with Emily Michalski and Ashley Raby adding 5 each as the Chargers won 25-14, 25-14 in Fox Valley Conference crossover action. Frankie Cavallaro had 20 assists for D-C (14-16), Kaylee Sommers added 4 digs and 5 aces and Gina Pagano had 4 aces.Huntley d. Grayslake North: Rachel Shores had 9 digs and Rachel Kisten added 7 kills to lead Huntley to a 25-18, 25-12 FVC crossover win. Kelsey DeWulf had 22 assists for the Red Raiders (22-13).Cary-Grove d. Grayslake Central: Abby Schebel and Meghan Seymour each had 8 kills as the Trojans won 25-15, 26-24 in an FVC crossover. Delaney Bayer had 22 digs for Cary-Grove (20-15).Westminster Chrsitian d. Hinckley-Big Rock: Savannah Dutcher had 14 kills and 3 blocks and Claire Speweik added 6 kills to lead the Warriors (17-11-3) to a 25-13, 25-17 nonconference win.Burlington Central d. North Boone: Caitlin Siebert served 18 of Central’s 50 points and added 5 kills in a 25-12, 25-12 Big Northern East win. Allie O’Reilly (7 digs), Lauren Wiltsie (4 kills), Makenna Jensen (6 kills), Mackenzy Nicholson (3 aces) and Ally DeTamble (7 digs) also contributed for the Rockets (24-11, 11-1).

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    Football: Scouting Week 9, Lake County

    Here's a look at the Week 9 matchups involving the teams from the North Suburban Conference plus Grayslake North, Grayslake Central and Carmel.

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    The Lakers and Warren high school hockey teams will face off Saturday night for a “Pink Out” game at Rink Side in Gurnee.

    Warren, Lakers think pink at the rink

    Two rival high school hockey teams plus one great cause will equal a win/win for everyone at Rink Side Hockey Arena in Gurnee Mills. Warren and the Lakers hockey club will be hitting the ice for a regular-season game, while also joining forces to raise money for the Avon Walk for breast cancer. The “Pink Out” game faces off at 5:20 p.m. Saturday.

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    Glenbard West’s Maggie Hughes returns a smash during the girls state tennis preliminaries at Prospect High School Thursday.

    A full day for the West Suburban Silver

    The West Suburban Silver is good preparation for the girls state tennis tournament, at least until you bump into a Silver rival.

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    Scouting girls cross country regionals / Northwest

    Here's a look at the upcoming girls cross country regionals from the perspective of teams in the Mid-Suburban League plus St. Viator and Maine West.

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    Scouting boys cross country regionals / Northwest

    Here's a look at the upcoming boys cross country regionals from the perspective of teams in the Mid-Suburban League plus St. Viator and Maine West.

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    Willowbrook quarterback Brian Johnson (#9) fires one during the Proviso East at Willowbrook football game Friday in Villa Park

    Life on the bubble can be complicated

    Many football teams already know they’ll be in the playoffs while many more teams know they won’t. What about the tweeners? What about the teams stuck in the middle that won’t know where they stand until the IHSA announces the pairings Saturday night?Eyes on Five this week looks at some of the teams sweating it out as we head into the final week of the regular season.

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    Hampshire’s Julianna Gass bumps a back-row shot by Jacobs Thursday in Hampshire.

    Jacobs has some fun against Hampshire

    The Jacobs girls volleyball team warmed up for the postseason by having lots of fun Thursday evening. The Golden Eagles were all smiles after a 25-13, 25-17 victory over host Hampshire in a Fox Valley Conference crossover match.

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    Bartlett doubles players Jennifer Gates, left, and Gabriella Gregorio congratulate one another after a point during the girls state tennis preliminaries at Prospect High School Thursday.

    Bartlett’s Gregorio-Gates will now fight through backdraw

    Bartlett seniors Gabriella Gregorio and Jennifer Gates knew the degree of difficulty was going to increase significantly after they lost only 3 games in their first two matches in Thursday’s opening day of the girls state tennis tournament. Their third-round opponent at Prospect High School was the 9-16 seed of Catherine Orfanos and Margaux Miller from defending state champion and perennial power Lake Forest. But Gregorio and Gates were ready to provide a tough test, and the four-year state tourney veterans and 17-32 seed did exactly that before falling 7-6 (7-5), 6-3.

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    Justin Jackson of Glenbard North is pulled down by Jake Kyllonen of Wheaton Warrenville South during the Wheaton Warrenville South at Glenbard North football game Friday.

    Scouting this weekend’s DuPage County football games
    Previews of the top Week 9 high school football games in the DuPage County coverage area

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    Boomers release 2014 baseball schedule

    The Schaumburg Boomers’ defense of their 2013 Frontier League Championship will begin in Schaumburg on May 23 with their home opener against the Florence Freedom, team officials announced Thursday.

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    Red Sox starting pitcher Jon Lester waits to throw during the first inning of Game 1 of the World Series at Fenway Park. Lester allowed five hits in 7 2-3 scoreless innings with eight strikeouts in Boston’s 8-1 victory.

    Lester accused of having foreign substance on glove

    Jon Lester says there was nothing but rosin — which is perfectly legal — on his glove when he beat the St. Louis Cardinals in Game 1 of the World Series. A Cardinals minor leaguer posted a screen shot on Twitter showing a green substance on Lester’s glove. Tyler Melling, a 25-year-old pitcher in the Florida State League, wrote: “Jon Lester using a little Vaseline inside the glove tonight?”

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    Michigan sophomore Mitch McGary poses for a portrait during the team’s media day Thursday at the Crisler Center in Ann Arbor, Mich.

    McGary’s status still uncertain for Michigan

    Mitch McGary’s back issue remains a bit of a mystery. Michigan coach John Beilein said his sophomore big man is making good progress but remains day to day, with the season opener still a couple of weeks away.

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    Former NFL wide receiver Terrell Owens will spend this weekend trying to make his mark on the bowling lanes.

    T.O. always gets ball in new sport

    Terrell Owens has finally found a sport where he doesn’t have to worry about getting the ball. T.O. wants to be a professional bowler.

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    Bears quarterback Jay Cutler lies on the field after being injured on a sack by Washington Redskins defensive end Chris Baker during Sunday’s game in Landover, Md.

    Some NFL injuries deliver more impact than others

    The rash of injuries to high-profile players overshadowed last weekend’s NFL action. Among the ones creating the serious ramifications could be Jay Culter's. His absence due to a groin injury comes when the Bears have Green Bay, Detroit and Baltimore ahead after their bye.

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    Present, future looks bright for Rosary golfers

    The plan, in part, was to stop and smell the native prairie grasses of Decatur’s Red Trail Run Golf Course. The Rosary golf team did that in last weekend’s Class A state finals without finding the tall stuff too often.

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    Notre Dame defensive lineman Stephon Tuitt (7) goes to the line of scrimmage with teammate Louis Nix, right, during the Michigan State game, in South Bend, Ind. Tuitt feels as comfortable playing the option as getting after quarterbacks, which is why he will be in the center of things against Air Force on Saturday.

    Tuitt will be in the middle for Irish vs. Air Force

    Notre Dame defensive end Stephon Tuitt is ready to do his best impersonation of nose guard Louis Nix III. With Nix nursing a sore shoulder, Tuitt is moving inside against the option to clog things up in the middle against Air Force on Saturday.

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    OSU changes date for 2014 game vs. Virginia Tech

    Ohio State will host Atlantic Coast Conference power Virginia Tech on Sept. 6 next year instead of Sept. 20, as was originally scheduled. The change was made to accommodate ESPN.

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    Andreas Kloden of Germany strains in the last meters of the ninth stage of the Tour de France in 2012. Kloden finishd second in the tour in 2004 and 2006.

    Kloden retires from cycling

    German cyclist Andreas Kloden announced his retirement on Thursday after a 16-year professional career that included two runner-up finishes in the Tour de France.

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    Ohio State wide receiver Corey Brown runs against Iowa during last Saturday’s game in Columbus, Ohio. Brown gave stirring, adults-only halftime speech last week that lifted the Buckeyes to yet another victory.

    Buckeyes’ Brown now all-in

    Corey "Philly" Brown had a team-best 60 catches for 669 yards and three touchdowns last season for Ohio State. Yet he showed so little conviction and commitment that head coach Urban Meyer said he wouldn’t even walk across the street for him — a sentiment that Brown also shared about Meyer and his assistants.

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    Scouting Week 9, Northwest

    Here's a look at the Week 9 football matchups featuring teams from the Mid-Suburban League plus St. Viator, Maine West, Leyden and Christian Liberty.

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    Von Schaumburg maintains a champion’s perspective on ALS

    Just two weeks before his 30th birthday, after trying to figure out why he was suddenly having trouble speaking, onetime Schaumburg football standout Eric Von Schaumburg learned he was linked with the man who proclaimed himself “the luckiest man on the face of the earth.” Before Friday's game against Palatine, the Saxons will honor his struggle and bring attention to fund-raising attempts through Von Schaumburg's Fight Like a Champion effort.

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    Four-time national champion go-kart racer Kyle Kalish with one of his karts at his Wauconda home.

    Wauconda teen winning as pro go-kart racer

    Kyle Kalish looks like he's been through the wringer after finishing a go-kart race. The four-time national champion sprint racer is bruised, exhausted and mentally spent. But the Wauconda teen relishes every moment. “A lot of kids think it's a Six Flags theme park type of thing where you just drive around in circles. There's a lot more to it than that.”

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    Bears running back Matt Forte takes off on a 50-yard touchdown run in Sunday's loss at Washington. Forte has been thriving so far in coach Marc Trestman's offense.

    Bears' offense gets high marks so far

    As the halfway point of the season approaches, the Bears' offense has earned some impressive grades, especially among the skill-position players. The Bears are on pace to score 489 points, which would be 33 more than the record set by the 1985 Super Bowl team. At its current rate, the offense will finish with 5,883 yards, 46 more than the standard set by the '85 team.

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    Mike North video: Cardinals in 6 games
    Mike North says the Cardinals will win the World Series in six games.

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    Football Focus: Week 9 Preview
    In this installment of Football Focus, Joe Aguilar visits visits Jacobs High School where the Golden Eagles have clinched a share of their first conference championship in 34 seasons.

Business

  •  
    Paul La Schiazza

    Will home phones exist after landlines don’t?

    Kukec's eBuzz features AT&T's plan to end the old-fashioned landline service for home telephones. Here's what residential and business consumers can expect.

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    News an incidental part of Facebook, study finds

    Most people don’t log on to Facebook to find out the news. But it’s an important news source anyway, even if incidentally, a study released Thursday indicated. The Pew Research Center found that 47 percent of adults who use Facebook say they get news there, either through links posted by friends or news sources they follow.

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    Ford is raising its full-year profit guidance after a strong third quarter that saw improving sales worldwide, including in past trouble spots like Europe and South America.

    Higher profits from Ford, others drive stocks up

    Another dose of strong corporate earnings, this time from Ford, Southwest Airlines and others, helped push the stock market higher on Thursday. It’s one of the busiest weeks on Wall Street for companies posting their quarterly results. Roughly a third of the Standard & Poor’s 500 index will report earnings, including some of the world’s best-known companies.

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    Career Education Corporation is selling its European segment.

    Schaumburg’s Career Education to sell European schools

    Schaumburg-based Career Education Corporation announced Thursday that it is selling its European education segments in Paris and Monaco.The price of the sale is expected to be $305 million.

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    Chicago-based United Continental Holdings Inc., the world’s largest airline, posted a third-quarter profit that trailed analysts’ estimates and promised unspecified “numerous actions” to boost revenue and efficiency.

    United Continental profit up, but shy of estimates

    The parent of Chicago-based United Airlines reported a third-quarter profit below analysts’ expectations as it absorbed a drop in revenue for flights to Asia — a key market. Chairman and CEO Jeff Smisek said United managers weren’t satisfied with the financial performance, “and are taking prompt actions to increase our revenue and operate more efficiently across the company.”

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    J.D. Foster, deputy chief economist for the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, second from right, speaks Thursday during the Naperville Area Chamber of Commerce’s Regional Economic Forecast. Moderator and personal finance expert Terry Savage led the discussion as Blu Putnam, managing director and chief economist of the CME Group, and John Calamos Sr., CEO and global co-chief investment officer of Calamos Investments, also shared thoughts about the future of the national economy.

    Naperville businesses hear ‘cautiously optimistic’ economic forecast

    There are reasons to be cautiously optimistic, but the national economy is not yet where it should be, experts at the Naperville Area Chamber of Commerce’s annual Regional Economic Forecast told an audience of business leaders Thursday morning. “In our outlook, we’re cautiously optimistic,” Panelist John Calamos Sr. said. “We think the markets still have more room to grow going forward.”

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    Plans are in the works for a significant expansion of Chicago Premium Outlets along I-88 in Aurora.

    Major expansion in store for Aurora outlet mall

    Aurora’s outlet mall appears headed for a significant expansion by the spring of 2015, bolstered this week by a unanimous city council vote to green light zoning and the final conceptual plan. Under the proposal, Chicago Premium Outlets along I-88 on the city’s north side will add 290,000 square feet of retail space, with hopes of breaking ground by May 2014 and completing work the following year.

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    A visitor looks up at a Boeing 747 jet being assembled at the company’s production plant in Everett, Wash.

    Boeing’s 747 is an icon, but future is in doubt
    For decades, the Boeing 747 was the Queen of the Skies. But the glamorous double-decker jumbo jet that revolutionized air travel and shrunk the globe could be nearing the end of the line. Chicago-based Boeing has cut its production target twice in six months. Just 18 will be produced in each of the next two years.

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    Wal-Mart to open up to 110 new stores in China

    Wal-Mart Stores Inc. plans to open up to 110 new stores in China in the next three years while the world’s largest retailer seeks to make the business there more profitable. Wal-Mart says it will focus on developing supercenters and Sam’s Clubs while remodeling existing stores.

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    Average U.S. rates on fixed mortgages dropped this week to their lowest levels in four months, a positive sign for the housing recovery.

    Average U.S. rate on 30-year mortgage at 4.13 pct.

    Average U.S. rates on fixed mortgages dropped this week to their lowest levels in four months, a positive sign for the housing recovery. Mortgage buyer Freddie Mac says the average rate on the 30-year loan fell to 4.13 percent. That’s down from 4.28 percent. The average on the 15-year fixed loan declined to 3.24 percent from 3.33 percent. Both averages are the lowest since June 20.

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    Job seekers Emilio Ferrer, Brian Ferrer, center, and Jonathan, right, of Hollywood, Fla., talk to a FirstService representative at a job fair in Miami Lakes, Fla.

    U.S. job openings rise in August, but hiring flat

    U.S. employers advertised more jobs in August but hiring was essentially flat, further evidence of a job market that has weakened after a promising start to the year. The Labor Department said Thursday that job postings rose 75,000 to a seasonally adjusted 3.9 million in August. July’s total was revised much higher to 3.8 million. Still, the number of job openings has changed little since February.

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    The amendment to the law allows owners to return a pet or be reimbursed for veterinary costs if it is discovered an illness was not disclosed by the seller.

    Illinois’ puppy lemon law tweaked

    Lawmakers are working to change a small mistake in Illinois’ new pet “lemon” law. Democratic state Sen. Dan Kotowski, the legislation’s sponsor, told a Senate committee that there was an error in the legislation that was passed by both houses last spring. The amendment to the law allows owners to return a pet or be reimbursed for veterinary costs if it is discovered an illness was not disclosed by the seller.

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    Boeing says it will speed up production of its new 787 as it tries to catch up on a huge backlog of orders for the plane.

    Boeing to speed up 787 production

    Boeing says it will speed up production of its new 787 as it tries to catch up on a huge backlog of orders for the plane. The company has orders for 890 of those planes that it has yet to build. Boeing is already on its way toward building 10 787s every month by the end of this year.

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    Tired of all that scurrying and waiting at O’Hare? The terminal’s new XpresSpa is offering massages, manicures, hot shaves and yoga.

    Stranded at O’Hare? Need a massage? No problem

    Air travelers might actually want to get stranded at O’Hare International Airport now that the Chicago airport has its first spa. The international terminal’s XpresSpa is offering massages, manicures, hot shaves and yoga.

  •  
    Just in time for the holiday shopping season, Target is rolling out a service that allows customers to order products online and then pick them up at its stores as the discounter seeks to cater to tech-savvy, time-pressured customers. Target Corp. said Wednesday that the service is now in about half of its 1,800 U.S. stores and will be expanded to the rest of its U.S stores by Nov. 1.

    Target steps up online push for holidays

    Just in time for the holiday shopping season, Target is rolling out a service that allows customers to order products online and then pick them up at its stores as the discounter seeks to cater to tech-savvy, time-pressured customers. Target Corp. said Wednesday that the service is now in about half of its 1,800 U.S. stores and will be expanded to the rest of its U.S stores by Nov. 1.

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    $2.3 million given to Illinois unemployment efforts

    The Illinois Department of Employment Security has been awarded a $2.3 million federal grant to spend on efforts aimed at cutting waste and fraud in the unemployment insurance program.

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    Illinois transit officials announce webinars for plans

    The Illinois Department of Transportation is announcing two webinars for the public to weigh in on the agency’s next five-year transit plan. Secretary of Transportation Ann Schneider said Wednesday the online meetings will take place on Oct. 28 and Oct. 29. Each is from 5 p.m. to 6 p.m.

Life & Entertainment

  •  
    John Davidson (“That’s Incredible,” “The Happiest Millionaire”) stars as the Wizard in the Emerald City national tour of “Wicked,” playing at the Oriental Theatre in Chicago from Wednesday, Oct. 30, through Sunday, Dec. 21.

    Elphaba and the Emerald City return to Chicago for ‘Wicked’ run

    John Davidson ("That's Incredible") and Kim Zimmer ("Guiding Light") add a touch of star power to the Emerald City national tour of "Wicked," which returns to Chicago for a run at the Oriental Theatre from Wednesday, Oct. 30, through Saturday, Dec. 21. At this stage of their careers, both Davidson and Zimmer are happy to be part of an ensemble of a lavishly produced hit show, even if it’s in two supporting roles.

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    Seller suspects home inspector collusion

    Q. The people who are buying our home just had a home inspection. After the inspection, I heard the inspector tell the buyer’s agent that he would change the report to what the buyer wanted. Isn’t he supposed to be impartial in his findings?

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    Keep pests out of your home this fall

    As the weather cools, we all start spending more time indoors — along with the bugs and critters. At least, that is their plan. But you can do a lot of things to keep them out.

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    “Fifty Shades of Grey” has its male lead, again. Jamie Dornan has been cast as Christian Grey, the lead role that Charlie Hunnam withdrew from recently.

    Jamie Dornan replaces Hunnam in ‘Fifty Shades’

    “Fifty Shades of Grey” has its male lead, again. Jamie Dornan has been cast as Christian Grey, the lead role that Charlie Hunnam withdrew from recently. Dornan will star alongside female lead Dakota Johnson, with Sam Taylor-Johnson directing.

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    This West Dundee home is located near a nature area with walking trails.

    Listing of the week

    This cheerful yellow brick ranch home, set on a hillside in West Dundee, has been lovingly cared for and maintained and is now looking for a new family.

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    In “All is Lost,” Robert Redford plays a nameless sailor aboard a 39-foot-yacht, trapped at sea without communication, power or supplies.

    Redford grasps the gravity of sea survival in 'All is Lost'

    If “Life of Pi” qualifies as an epic account of survival at sea, J.C. Chandor's “All is Lost” more accurately resembles a chamber play. One character. One small space. Virtually no dialogue. At 77, Robert Redford slips into his nameless character with transparent ease, and for 107 minutes, he wordlessly works out his problems using furrowed brows and hope-filled eyes to keep us connected.

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    Tom Hardy will play Elton John in a biopic titled “Rocketman.”

    Tom Hardy to play Elton John in biopic

    Tom Hardy will play Elton John in a biopic titled “Rocketman.” Focus Features announced Hardy’s casting as the iconic piano man on Wednesday. The film is planned to begin shooting late next year.

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    Sean Faris and Grace Huang play lovers in the superbly photographed romance

    Reel life: 'Lost for Words' seems more lost than anything

    Dann supplies a run-down of Halloween offerings, answers a critic of his “Escape Plan” review, critiques four specialty movies, including the romantic “Lost For Words,” the surrealistically crazy “Escape From Tomorrow,” the culinary documentary “Spilling Plates,” and the disappointing home invasion thriller “Mischief Night.”

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    Stranded at O’Hare? Need a massage? No problem

    Air travelers might actually want to get stranded at O’Hare International Airport now that the Chicago airport has its first spa. The international terminal’s XpresSpa is offering massages, manicures, hot shaves and yoga.

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    Pisco, a grape spirit that is not aged in wood, is featured in the Cuzco cocktail.

    Cuzco
    Cuzco

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    The Judgment Day cocktail is made with pisco, a grape spirit that has not been aged in wood, leaving it white.

    Judgment Day
    Judgement Day

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    The Cuzco, left, and Judgment Day cocktails feature pisco, a grape spirit that has not been aged in wood, leaving it white. Made in Peru and Chile, both countries claim it as their national spirit, spurring intense debate on who had it first.

    Building a spirited American-Peruvian relationship

    Once obscure — and still so in much of the country — pisco is showing up in a growing number of bars and liquor stores. It is made in Peru and Chile, and both countries claim pisco as their national spirit, spurring intense debate on who had it first. Either way, its clean taste and faintly fruity aroma makes pisco an easy partner for the sorts of citrusy cocktails Americans love.

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    Fallen Star, a small cottage by artist Do Hi Suh, sits atop Jacobs Hall, a seven-story structure that houses the engineering school on the campus of the University of California, San Diego in San Diego. The piece of art is part of the Stuart Collection, which in a 1982 agreement uses the entire UCSD campus as a site for commissioned sculpture.

    5 free things in San Diego, beyond surf and sand

    The home of SeaWorld and a world-famous zoo offers plenty of cash-burning attractions, but San Diego also has awe-inspiring sites that are as free as the sea breeze. The nation's eighth-largest city has matured from its “Fast Times at Ridgemont High” surf days. Today it boasts a burgeoning international art scene, thriving farm-to-table food movement and a booming bio-tech industry, many of which are free to see.

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    This artist’s rendering shows a capsule lifted by a high-altitude balloon up 19 miles into the air for tourists. Company CEO Jane Poynter said people would pay $75,000 to spend a couple of hours looking down at the curve of the Earth.

    A new idea for space tourism: Balloon over rocket

    The latest space tourism venture depends more on hot air than rocket science. World View Enterprises announced plans Tuesday to send people up in a capsule, lifted 19 miles by a high-altitude balloon. Jane Poynter, CEO of the Tucson, Ariz.-based company, said the price for the four-hour ride would be $75,000. While it’s not quite space — that starts at 62 miles — the plan requires approval from the Federal Aviation Administration, which oversees commercial space.

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    Night life events: Pair it up at Eddie Merlot’s wine dinner

    Join Eddie Merlot’s for a Duckhorn wine dinner at 7 p.m. Friday, Oct. 25, at both the Lincolnshire and Warrenville locations. Calling all beer geeks and foodies: Nevin’s Brewing Company in Plainfield is throwing a ghoulish party from 1 to 4 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 26, featuring more than a dozen craft beers and foods made from animal heads.

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    Lisa Marie Presley plays the Arcada Theatre in St. Charles on Saturday, Oct. 26.

    Music notes: Lisa Marie graces the Arcada stage

    Lisa Marie Presley will perform songs from her recent album, “Storm & Grace,” at St. Charles' Arcada Theatre Saturday. Barrington natives Elliot and Natalie Bergman have made a huge splash with the reggae-tinged band Wild Belle, and the brother-sister duo will play a "hometown" show at Metro Saturday. Meanwhile, the great Southern indie band Drive-by Truckers return to the area for what promises to be a scorching Halloween show.

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    Master of ceremony Rosa Salazar holds the microphone for winner Diana Menchaca during the Reflejos Sweet Creations cooking contest Wednesday at the Best Western Hotel and Conference Center in Schaumburg. With her are two of the judges, Julian Crews, left, a WGN anchor and founder of Old Havana Foods and Omar Martinez, of the Food Network Challenge.

    Round Lake mom wins Reflejos Sweet Creations dessert contest

    Diana Menchaca started to shake when her name was announced as the Reflejos Sweet Creations winner in Schaumburg. “I can’t believe it. Are you sure it’s me?’” she said, as she walked up to accept the $500 first-prize check. Menchaca, a 38-year-old mother of two from Round Lake, beat out 11 other finalists with her butter and cinnamon Mexican hojarascas cookies.

Discuss

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    FILE - In this June 14, 2013 file photo, Illinois Senate President John Cullerton speaks about the state's pension crisis at a news conference in Chicago. In an interview with the Associated Press Monday, Oct. 14, 2013, Cullerton said the state's pension crisis could be addressed in the fall legislative session even if a committee working on it remains split. (AP Photo/M. Spencer Green, File)

    Editorial: What happened to the sense of urgency on pensions?

    A Daily Herald editorial says suburban lawmakers must put pressure on leaders to create a new sense of urgency on pension reform.

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    Written off for dead, immigration reform could still live

    Columnist Byron York: The Senate and House had not even settled the final details of ending the government shutdown before President Obama was on to his next priority. “We still need to pass a law to fix our broken immigration system,” Obama said on the night of Oct. 16 as Capitol Hill scrambled to end the standoff. In case anyone missed it, the next morning he declared: “We should finish the job of fixing our broken immigration system.”

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    Free speech: For good, ill or in between, it’s to die for

    Columnist Jim Slusher: In honor of National Free Speech Week, here are a few random thoughts in hopes of engaging your attention on a notion that is so fundamental to everything we are as Americans and everything we at the Daily Herald do as a newspaper:

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    A health care law in need of a doctor

    Columnist Michael Gerson: Obamacare is a multiyear, multifaceted fiasco. It is a case study in how to alienate a country you intend to help. And it could become an intellectual crisis for modern liberalism.

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    Clinton campaign would continue the lies
    A Palatine letter to the editor: The content of a recent letter left much to be desired. I would suggest you file a copy and revisit this on April 1, 2014. It would provide much needed comic relief on April Fools’ Day in light of the dismal performance of the Obama administration, and remind us we surely don’t need another Democrat pseudologist!

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    Learn the facts about benefits of flu shot
    A letter to the editor: October is a great time to begin preparing for this year’s flu season. It’s a time when consumers are inundated with myths regarding the seasonal influenza vaccination. Every year, inaccurate facts are distributed to consumers that deter many from getting a flu shot.

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    A clarification on 2016’s Election Day
    A Hanover Park letter to the editor: The presidential election in 2016 will be on Nov. 8, not Nov. 1, as the law states Election Day occurs on the day after the first Monday.

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    Downtown conferences valuable to school boards
    A Mount Prospect letter to the editor: I read with interest the article about the cost of suburban school board members attending the annual conferences in Chicago, so I called my brother-in-law for input. He is a retired superintendent of schools in Illinois. He strongly supported the conferences because they update school board members of current changes and trends in education, including updates from the state board whose members are present to answer questions.

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    Show allegiance to U.S., not to one party
    An Inverness letter to the editor: It seems that some politicians in Washington (the Tea Party in particular) aren’t citizens of the United States anymore. They’re citizens of their own party with more allegiance to that party than to the country they were elected to represent.

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    GOP should take the longer view
    A Schaumburg letter to the editor: In the past few decades there has been a general conception that Republicans, rather than Democrats, have strategic plans that stretch further into the future. Their emphasis on local elections to elect grass-roots conservatives, the nomination and appointment of judges in district and circuit courts, and their success in securing the House of Representatives in 2010 is evidence of this stratagem.

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    Power plant is a hazard
    A Waukegan letter to the editor: I am concerned about the Midwest Generation coal-powered plant on the lakefront in Waukegan.

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    E-cigs are good alternative to cigarettes
    A Vernon Hills letter to the editor: Electric cigarettes (e-cigs) are an alternative to real cigarettes, not a gateway to them.

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    Not impressed by Obama’s budget cuts
    Not impressed by Obama’s budget cutsPresident Obama has ordered his cabinet to cut $100 million from the federal budget. Before we become too impressed by this, let’s look at the math, which is neither liberal nor conservative. His proposed budget is $3.5 trillion.To put this in perspective, a billion is 1,000 million and a trillion is 1,000 billion. More perspective — if an ordinary citizen like you or I budgeted $4,000 a month for expenses, we would have to cut a whole 12 cents out of our budget to match President Obama’s cut. More smoke and mirrors from the president.The Democrat-controlled Senate proposed a budget for the first time in four years and it calls for a massive increase in tax revenue that will go on to fund even more government spending.House Republicans and Congressman Peter Roskam took our national debt and budget problems seriously by proposing a plan that will balance the budget in 10 years and actually addresses our entitlement programs. We absolutely must start bringing down our $17 trillion debt. Thank you, Peter, for taking this problem seriously.Terry SpanglerWheaton

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    This senior OK with Social Security reform
    An East Dundee letter to the editor: The senior who berated U.S. Rep. Randy Hultgren and “right wing conservatives” for wanting to reform social security now exposed her shortsightedness. Unlike most politicians, Randy is not saying what low information seniors want to hear as a means to get re-elected. He is looking long-term.

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    Athletes, keep God out of the game
    A Wheaton letter to the editor: I do believe we must discourage a religious practice that is manifested at various athletic events. On the front page of the first section of the Oct. 11 Daily Herald, we see a photograph of Bears receiver Brandon Marshall with both arms raised to the heavens as he celebrates his first of two touchdowns against the New York Giants.

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    Brainerd Building should be renovated
    An Ingleside letter to the editor: A voice from the Class of 1939 concerning the future of the former Libertyville Township High School, now known as the Brainard Building: I submit my opinion and approval for renovation.

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