Daily Archive : Sunday February 2, 2014


    Carmel Catholic High School competes in the Large Team category Sunday during the IHSA Cheerleading Sectional at Grayslake North High School.

    Suburban cheer teams step it up at sectionals

    Dozens of cheerleading squads from across the suburbs competed in IHSA Sectional tournaments Sunday, trying to qualify to a trip to the State Final in Bloomington. “I'm amazed at how tough and skilled these kids are now,” said on spectator.

    Bruno Mars, left, performs during the halftime show of the NFL Super Bowl XLVIII football game at MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, New Jersey on Sunday, February 2.

    Images: Super Bowl Entertainment
    The entertainment and extravaganza surrounding Super Bowl XLVIII Sunday at MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, New Jersey including half time with Bruno Mars and teh Red Hot Chili Peppers.

    Seattle Seahawks’ quarterback Russell Wilson holds the Lombardi Trophy after the NFL Super Bowl XLVIII football game Sunday, Feb. 2, 2014, in East Rutherford, N.J. The Seahawks won 43-8.

    Images: Super Bowl XLVIII
    Super Bowl XLVIII between the Denver Broncos and the Seattle Seahawks took place Sunday at MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, New Jersey.The Seahawks won the game 43-8 in a romp over the Broncos.

    Philip Seymour Hoffman

    Officials: Hoffman found dead with needle in arm

    Philip Seymour Hoffman, who won the Oscar for his portrayal of writer Truman Capote and created a gallery of slackers, charlatans and other characters so vivid that he was regarded as one of the world’s finest actors, was found dead in his apartment Sunday with what officials said was a needle in his arm. He was 46.

    A box of chocolates from Katherine Anne Confections in Chicago was in display Sunday during the Morton Arboretum's annual Chocolate Expo and Market. The event featured nearly 20 vendors offering different chocolate concoctions.

    A Super Bowl of chocolate at the Morton Arboretum

    Chips, Buffalo wings and pizza may have been the dining selections at many suburban homes for Super Bowl Sunday, but those looking to satisfy a more sophisticated palate could have stopped first at the Morton Arboretum's Chocolate Expo and Market. The annual event in Lisle featured nearly 20 vendors offering a wide range of delicious chocolate concoctions and a number of chocolate-themed...


    Hollywood reacts to Hoffman’s death

    Celebrity colleagues and admirers of Philip Seymour Hoffman shared their reaction Sunday to his death at 46 of an apparent drug overdose:

    Michael David Dunn is about to go on trial for the alleged murder of a black teenager in a case that raises comparisons to the George Zimmerman-Trayvon Martin case. Jury selection is scheduled to begin today in Jacksonville, Fla.

    Echoes of Zimmerman might he heard in Fla. trial

    Michael David Dunn is about to go on trial for the alleged murder of a black teenager in a case that raises comparisons to the George Zimmerman-Trayvon Martin case. He fatally shot 17-year-old Jordan Davis in November 2012 outside a convenience store following an argument over loud music Davis and his friends were playing from their SUV.

    PADS guests from left, James Banks Jr., Jerome Bishop. and Christopher Thompson, share a laugh while playing cards and keeping warm Monday morning at the shelter in North Chicago.

    Images: The Week in Pictures
    This edition of The Week in Pictures features sundogs, a lot of snow, more extreme cold temperatures, and a groundhog with bad news.

    As 14-year-old girls lucky enough to have $5.50 tickets to see The Beatles at the International Amphitheater in Chicago in 1966, Mary Dickson, left, of Sleepy Hollow and Rita Bullington of Chicago still love The Beatles. Paul was Dickson’s favorite, and Bullington favored George.

    Suburbanites recall Beatlemania’s arrival 50 years ago

    It might have happened 50 years ago, but the memories of The Beatles coming to America still bring out the teenage girl in many suburbanites. “Even today, when I hear a Beatles song, I can get that same feeling as when I was 13 or 15,” says Mary Dickson, 62, of Sleepy Hollow. “It was exciting. It was different.”

    New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie holds a souvenir football helmet as he leaves after a ceremony to pass official hosting duties of next year’s Super Bowl to representatives from Arizona on Saturday in New York. Fellow Republicans are assessing the damage of new allegations that Gov. Christie knew about a traffic-blocking operation orchestrated by top aides.

    Top Republicans say they stand by NJ Gov. Christie

    High-profile Republicans were adamant Sunday that New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie should not resign from his post as chairman of the Republican Governors Association following a former ally’s claim that there is evidence Christie knew about an apparently politically motivated traffic jam earlier than he has said.

    In a Sunday, March 5, 2006, file photo, actor Philip Seymour Hoffman poses with the Oscar he won for best actor for his work in "Capote" at the 78th Academy Awards in Los Angeles. Hoffman died Sunday, Feb. 2, in his New York City apartment.

    Images: Philip Seymour Hoffman, 1967-2014
    Images of Philip Seymour Hoffman through the years. Hoffman died Sunday at age 46.


    North Aurora honors top cop for compassion, diligence

    It wasn’t chasing down a robbery suspect on foot or solving a decades-old murder case that earned Officer John “Jake” Kerlin the 2013 Officer of the Year Award for the North Aurora Police Department. Rather, it was kind, compassionate personal attention to an elderly woman in need and diligence after responding to a public dumping complaint.


    Wauconda board meets Tuesday

    The Wauconda village board will gather Tuesday to discuss the development of a strategic planning project and other issues.


    Restaurant inspection reports

    The Lake County Health Department/Community Health Center offers diners the ability to check a restaurant’s inspection history.

    The West End Jazz Band will perform music to accompany a silent movie Feb. 9 at Forest View Educational Theater in Arlington Heights.

    Northwest suburbs in 60 seconds
    No more baby blankets:


    Old-school snowmobiles on display in Wauconda

    The bodies may have been ‘80s vintage, but they handled as though they were just out of the shop. Wauconda’s Cook Memorial Park was the site of the 6th annual Vintage Snowmobile Ride & Show, held by the Northeastern Illinois Association of Snowmobile Clubs.


    Self-defense for women

    The Mundelein Police Department hosts a free class for women 18 and over who are interested in learning self-defense tactics.

    Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, seen here, and U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry sparred over peacemaking, as a global campaign to sanction the Jewish state for its settlements gains momentum.

    Netanyahu: Boycott attempts won’t hurt Israel

    Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Sunday dismissed warnings by U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry that Israel could be targeted by a growing boycott campaign if peace talks with the Palestinians fail.


    Lake County retired teachers

    The Lake County Retired Teachers Association will meet at noon on Tuesday, Feb. 11, at Lambs Farm restaurant, Route 176 and I-94, near Libertyville.

    An election official reads a ballot during a vote counting after the general election in Bangkok Sunday. Protesters trying to derail Thailand’s national elections Sunday forced the closure of hundreds of polling stations in a highly contentious vote that has become the latest flash point in the country’s deepening political crisis.

    Thai elections peaceful, but crisis far from over

    Thailand held nationwide elections without bloodshed Sunday despite widespread fears of violence. But the country’s bitter political crisis is far from over, and one of the next flash points is likely to be an effort to nullify the vote.

    A group of anti-government protesters warm themselves around a barrel near a poster of famous Ukrainian soccer coach and player Valeriy Lobanovskyi, in central Kiev, Ukraine, Sunday.

    Ukrainian president to end sick leave Monday

    Ukraine’s president will return Monday from a short sick leave that had sparked a guessing game he was taking himself out of action in preparation to step down or for a crackdown on widespread anti-government protests.


    Next Arlington Hts. citizen police academy starts in March

    Registration is now open for the next session of the Arlington Heights Citizens Police Academy which begins March 11. The class is offered exclusively to residents and business leaders from Arlington Heights and is held on Tuesday nights from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. for 11 consecutive weeks.


    No more baby blankets at Lutheran General

    Starting today, all babies in the Advocate Lutheran General Hospital newborn nursery won’t have blankets anymore; they’ll have Halo SleepSacks, a wearable blanket that officials say is specially designed for safer sleep.

    A visitor to Folsom Lake, Calif., walks his dog down a boat ramp that is now several hundred yards away from the waters’ edge. Amid California’s most crippling drought of modern times, state officials on Friday announced they will not allocate water to agencies that serve 25 million people and nearly 1 million acres of farmland.

    California farmers brace for drought, unemployment

    Amid California’s driest year on record, the nation’s leading agricultural region is locked in drought and bracing for unemployment to soar, sending farm workers to food lines in a place famous for its abundance.

    Rep. Paul Ryan said distrust of President Barack Obama runs so deep in the Republican caucus that he’s skeptical the GOP-led House would pass any immigration measure this year.

    Paul Ryan: Immigration legislation unlikely in ‘14

    Days after House Republicans unveiled a roadmap for an overhaul of the nation’s broken immigration system, one of its backers said legislation is unlikely to pass during this election year.

    In this photo provided by the Newtown Bee, Connecticut State Police lead children from the Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn., following the shooting there Dec. 14, 2012.

    Despite safety emphasis, school shootings continue

    There’s been no real reduction in the number of U.S. school shootings despite increased security put in place after the rampage at Connecticut’s Sandy Hook Elementary School in December 2012.

    Chicago Mayor Richard Daley was hospitalized Friday in an intensive care unit after feeling ill upon returning to Chicago from a business trip in Arizona. He was to remain hospitalized overnight Sunday.

    Spokeswoman: Daley remains in hospital for tests

    Former Chicago Mayor Richard M. Daley likely will remain hospitalized in an intensive care unit for several days as doctors conduct tests to determine why he was feeling ill and disoriented during a conference in Arizona, a spokeswoman for the city’s longest serving mayor said Sunday.

    Woodstock Willie, being held up for the crowd on the Woodstock Square by animal wrangler Mark Szafran, gave a disappointing forecast Sunday morning. Willie saw his shadow, meaning six more weeks of winter.

    Six more weeks of winter, grumpy groundhog says

    Woodstock Willie was in a grumpy mood early Sunday morning, screeching, squirming and generally resisting efforts to be pulled from his hole to make his famous annual forecast. His reluctance to appear, as it turns out, was with good reason. Willie saw his shadow when he came out, meaning six more weeks of winter.

    Former Metra CEO Alex Clifford, right, testifies to the RTA last summer during a hearing. Clifford’s severence deal could end up costing Metra $871,000, an RTA audit forecasts.

    Much-criticized exit deal with ex-CEO still costing Metra

    Since late June, Metra has paid more than $319,000 to Alex Clifford, the transit executive who left this summer after raising questions about political pressure from the state’s most powerful lawmakers. His total payout could climb as high as $871,000.

    Passengers wait to get off the Caribbean Princess cruise ship Friday, after it returned to a Houston-area port.

    Cruise ship sails two days after early return

    The Caribbean Princess was to embark on a cruise of the western Caribbean on Saturday, the Houston Chronicle reported. Princess Cruises had said the Caribbean Princess returned early on Thursday because of a dense-fog advisory, not because of an outbreak that left people vomiting and with diarrhea.

    New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie holds a souvenir football helmet Saturday as he leaves after a ceremony to pass official hosting duties of next year’s Super Bowl to representatives from Arizona.

    Christie going on offensive over accusation

    The governor’s political team sent an email Saturday to donors, along with columnists and pundits who might be in a position to defend Christie, bashing the man Christie put in a top post at the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey and the accusations the man’s lawyer made in a letter Friday.

    The USNS John Glenn off the coast of San Diego. On Saturday, the military christened the Navy logistics ship in honor of the first American to orbit Earth.

    Navy christens ship in honor of astronaut Glenn

    The 92-year-old Glenn, a Marine pilot during World War II and the Korean War, told the audience that he was proud of the ship bearing his name. He also paid homage to the people he served alongside.

    Yves Gomes, a student at the University of Maryland, who’s parents were deported, right, talks Friday to his great uncle Henry Gomes, in his great uncle’s house where he lives, in Silver Spring, Md.,

    More states grant in-state tuition to immigrants

    Supporters of immigrants’ rights are energized because after years of contentious fights, New Jersey and three other states passed statutes last year that will allow such students who came to the U.S. when they were minors to pay in-state tuition.Fifteen states now have such a statute, said Ann Morse of the National Conference of State Legislatures. In addition, university boards in Hawaii,...


    Jacobs High School competes in the Large Team category during the IHSA Cheerleading Sectional Sunday hosted by Grayslake North High School.

    Images: Competitive Cheerleading sectionals at Grayslake North High School
    The IHSA Competitive Cheerleading sectionals took place at Grayslake North High School on Sunday, February 2.


    Powerful Glenbard North prevails whatever the weather

    The latest conference coronation for the Glenbard North wrestling team simply had to wait a day.“We almost didn’t have a conference tournament,” Glenbard North coach Mark Hahn joked after the Panthers crowned six champions and placed five other competitors in the top three. “We had that really, really bad blizzard — two inches.” Glenbard North added to its storied legacy with its 16th consecutive DuPage Valley Conference championship Sunday afternoon in Naperville. The Panthers’ 269 tournament points — augmented by its flawless regular-season dual record — easily outdistanced Glenbard East and Wheaton North, who were tied with 178.5 points. Lake Park, Naperville North and Wheaton Warrenville South had a champion each in placing fourth through sixth.

    Seattle Seahawks’ Jermaine Kearse, center, celebrates with teammate Derrick Coleman, right, after catching a 23-yard touchdown pass during the second half of the NFL Super Bowl XLVIII football game against the Denver Broncos Sunday, Feb. 2, 2014, in East Rutherford, N.J. The Seahawks won 43-8.

    Seahawks soar to first Super Bowl title

    EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. — Waiting to get their hands on the Lombardi Trophy, the Seahawks were surrounded by security guards in orange jackets. It was the first time anyone in that color stopped them all night.The Seahawks stayed true to their mantra to make each day a championship day. They made Super Bowl Sunday the best day of all with one of the greatest performances in an NFL title game sparked by a defense that ranks among the best ever.The Seahawks won their first Super Bowl crown by punishing Peyton Manning and the Denver Broncos 43-8. That masterful defense, the NFL’s stingiest, never let the five-time MVP get going, disarming the highest-scoring offense in league history.“The only way we could say we were the best defense was to take down the best offense,” linebacker Bobby Wagner said.Seattle (16-3) was too quick, too physical and just too good for Denver. What was hyped as a classic matchup between an unstoppable offense and a miserly defense turned into a rout.“We’ve been relentless all season,” quarterback Russell Wilson said. “Having that mentality of having a championship day every day. At the end of the day, you want to play your best football and that is what we did today.”Punctuating Seattle’s dominance were a 69-yard interception return touchdown by linebacker Malcolm Smith to make it 22-0, and Percy Harvin’s sensational 87-yard kickoff return to open the second half.“I always imagined myself making great plays,” said Smith, the game’s MVP. “Never thought about being the MVP.”When the Seahawks, up by 29 points, forced a Denver punt early in the third quarter, the 12th Man — and there were legions of them in MetLife Stadium began chanting “L-O-B, L-O-B.”As in Legion of Boom, the Seahawks’ hard-hitting secondary, part of a young team with an average age of 26 years, 138 days.“This is an amazing team. Took us four years to get to this point, but they never have taken a step sideways,” coach Pete Carroll said. “These guys would not take anything but winning this ballgame.”The loss by the Broncos again raised questions about Manning’s ability to win the biggest games. He is 11-12 in the postseason, 1-2 in Super Bowls. After the game, he brushed off questions about his legacy.“Certainly to finish this way is very disappointing. It’s not an easy pill to swallow,” said Manning, who threw for a record 55 touchdowns in 2013, two years after missing an entire season because of neck surgeries. “I don’t know if you ever really get over it.”He never looked comfortable against a defense some will begin comparing to the 1985 Bears and 2000 Ravens other NFL champions who had runaway Super Bowl victories. Seattle forced four turnovers; Denver had 26 all season. All-Pro cornerback Richard Sherman left with a high ankle sprain in the fourth quarter. He celebrated on crutches.“I hope we etched our names in the history books,” Sherman said.Wilson, who has an NFL-record 28 wins in his first two pro seasons, including playoffs, had a 23-yard TD pass to Jermaine Kearse late in the third quarter to make it 36-0.Wilson also hit Doug Baldwin for a 10-yard score in the final period in what had become one of the most lopsided Super Bowls. For the fifth time in six meetings between the NFL’s No. 1 offense and defense, the D dominated.“It’s all about making history,” All-Pro safety Earl Thomas said. “This was a dominant performance from top to bottom.”Denver fell to 2-5 in Super Bowls, and by the end many of Manning’s passes resembled the “ducks” Sherman said the All-Pro quarterback sometimes threw.

    Now that general manager Phil Emery, left, and coach Marc Trestman have the offense headed in the right direction, it’s time to make the defense at least functional.

    Do the Bears have a Super future?

    The Bears have work to do, but for the first time in a long time, that light at the end of the tunnel isn’t an oncoming train. You can’t make the playoffs without an offense. You can’t have an offense without a successful quarterback. And you can’t have a successful quarterback without an offensive mind on staff. The Bears finally have all three.

    Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson holds the Lombardi Trophy after the NFL Super Bowl XLVIII football game Sunday, Feb. 2, 2014, in East Rutherford, N.J. The Seahawks won 43-8.

    What can Bears learn from Seahawks’ big win?

    As the Bears’ brain trust spends another off-season trying to make the moves necessary to get to the playoffs, which they’ve now missed for the sixth time in seven years, they can learn some lessons from the Super Bowl XLVIII participants.

    Center Joakim Noah is the Bulls’ first-half MVP and guard D.J. Augustin is the Bulls’ most improved player, according to Mike McGraw.

    State of the Bulls at midseason

    The Bulls spent Super Sunday in Sacramento. They'll be looking to bounce back from a 42-point loss to the Kings last season, as well as Saturday's low-scoring night in New Orleans. In the meantime, here's a list of Bulls' first-half lists.

    Seahawks coach Pete Carroll holds the Vince Lombardi Trophy after his team steamrollered the Broncos on Sunday night.

    Ah, for a coach with energy of a Pete Carroll

    Can anyone around here remember when the Bears had a head coach like Pete Carroll with so much personality, infectious energy and a locker room culture that reflect those qualities? Me neither.


    Bulls game day
    Bulls vs. Sacramento Kings at Sleep Train Arena, 9 p.m. MondayTV: Comcast SportsNetRadio: ESPN 1000-AMUpdate: Rudy Gay (21.0 ppg) gave the Kings a boost when he first arrived in a trade from Toronto. Sacramento went 9-11 in his first 20 games but has since lost seven in a row. The losing skid coincided with an ankle injury to PF DeMarcus Cousins (22.6 points, 11.6 rebounds), who is not expected to play against the Bulls. PG Isaiah Thomas (20 points, 6.3 assists) is playing well, but Sacramento traded away some of its depth. The Kings rank 28th in the league in team defense, allowing 104.6 ppg. The Bulls were absolutely crushed in Sacramento last season, losing 121-79.Next: Phoenix Suns at US Airways Center, 8 p.m. Tuesday — Mike McGraw


    No. 10 Michigan falls at Indiana

    BLOOMINGTON, Ind. — Michigan’s prolific offense was out of sorts and its 10-game winning streak came to an end.Yet after Indiana handed the seventh-ranked Wolverines their first Big Ten loss on Sunday, coach John Beilein couldn’t have been happier.“I think it’s really good for us,” Beilein said. “I didn’t think we were going to go undefeated. We hadn’t lost since Dec. 11, against Arizona. I had no expectations of 18-0, believe me. In the long run, we have to get better.”The Wolverines lost 63-52, producing a season-worst point total and ending their best start to conference play since 1976-77. They had been the league’s last unbeaten.Michigan (16-5, 8-1 Big Ten) received 13 points from Derrick Walton Jr. and 12 from Caris LeVert. While the Wolverines’ guards produced, their dynamic frontcourt duo of Nik Stauskas and Glenn Robinson III was held in check.Stauskas had six points, only the third time this season he has failed to score in double figures, while Robinson scored a quiet nine points. Michigan shot 40 percent from the field and made just three 3-pointers.“We didn’t get many good shots today,” Beilein said. “Credit their defense. The defensive game plan was outstanding. We have never seen anything like it since I’ve been here.”A major part of that scheme was defending Stauskas, a 6-foot-6, 205-pound small forward, with lithe point guard Yogi Ferrell. The cross-match worked to perfection, as Stauskas was 1 of 6 from the field and spent many possessions on the left side of the court away from the action, rarely seeing the ball at times.“I was basically trying to limit his touches, play the screens and not let him get the ball,” Ferrell said.Indiana (14-8, 4-5) had lost three of four but rode that tight, creative defense and Ferrell’s hot shooting to a win that might shift its season.Indiana coach Tom Crean decided Ferrell’s awareness, quick hands and intensity were the perfect antidote to Stauskas’ deadly shooting and effective passing.“You’ve got to make his catches hard and his looks even harder,” Crean said. “You’ve got to be conscious of where he is at all times. I’m proud of our whole team defensively. Yogi was the catalyst.”With Stauskas limited, the Hoosiers led most of the way in improving to 12-2 at Assembly Hall. Noah Vonleh added 10 points and 12 rebounds for the Hoosiers, who shot 54 percent. Ferrell was 7 of 8 from 3-point range.Indiana may have reinvigorated its hopes for an at-large berth to the NCAA tournament by securing a second victory over a top 10 opponent.The Wolverines are a common victim and no stranger to coming up short in this series.Dating to last season’s run to the national title game, the Wolverines are 27-12 in their last 39 games with three of the losses to the Hoosiers, who are 24-8 against Michigan over the last 18 seasons.Michigan was outrebounded 31-22 and seemed bothered by its shooting woes.“It was a little frustrating for guys since a lot of those were shots we make regularly,” said Jordan Morgan, who had five points and 10 rebounds filling in for the injured Mitch McGary.As Ferrell drained one 3 after another, fueling the crowd early and late, the Wolverines’ offense was off from the start. Michigan had more turnovers (8) than field goals (7) in the first half and scored just six points on its final 11 possessions to trail 25-22 at halftime.It took a few breaks to stay that close. Walton was fouled twice in the half shooting behind the arc and converted all six free throws. The Wolverines also pushed the ball effectively for transition opportunities, scoring eight fast-break points.After Indiana’s defense was slow to get back and allowed Zak Irvin a layup, Crean used a timeout with 10:08 left in the half. Out of the stoppage, the Hoosiers scored on five of their next six trips to grab a 22-18 lead.Facing their fourth halftime deficit since November, the Wolverines never got over the hump.

    Conant High School fans cheer on the team as they compete in the Coed Team category during the IHSA Cheerleading Sectional Sunday hosted by Rolling Meadows High School.

    Images: Competitive Cheerleading sectionals at Rolling Meadows High School
    The IHSA Competitive Cheerleading sectionals took place at Rolling Meadows High School on Sunday, February 2.

    Associated Press The Sharks’ Joe Pavelski scores a goal in a shootout, beating Blackhawks goalie Corey Crawford on Saturday night in San Jose, Calif.

    Working overtime not working out very well for Hawks

    Overtimes and shootouts continue to be the Blackhawks’ kryptonite. When the Hawks lost 2-1 in a shootout at San Jose late Saturday night, it dropped them to 5-8 in shootouts this season. They are 0-6 in overtime contests. Coach Joel Quenneville has no explanation for the dismal record, only to say that the Hawks have left a lot of points on the table.


    Blackhawks game day
    Blackhawks vs. Los Angeles Kings at Staples Center, 9:30 p.m.TV: WGNRadio: WGN-AM 720The skinny: The Kings have lost seven of their last eight as they continue to have problems scoring. The Kings have scored 134 goals, which is the second fewest in the Western Conference. Corey Crawford starts in goal for the Hawks, who have collected 4 of a possible 6 points in the first three stops on their six-game road trip.Next: Anaheim Ducks at the Honda Center, 9:30 p.m. Wednesday.— Tim Sassone

    This undated still provided by Axe, shows a frame grab from the company’s 2014 Super Bowl XLVIII Ad. Advertisers that have traditionally focused on skimpily clad models and lowest-common denominator humor are promising more sedate ads in 2014.

    Super Bowl ads show signs of maturity

    Forget slapstick humor, corny gimmicks and skimpy bikinis. This year’s Super Bowl ads promise something surprising: Maturity. There won’t be any close-up tongue kisses in Godaddy’s ad. Nor will there be half-naked women running around in the Axe body spray spot. And Gangnam Style dancing will be missing from the Wonderful Pistachios commercial. In their place? Fully-clothed women, well-known celebs and more product information.

    This undated frame grab provided by Anheuser-Busch shows the company’s 2014 Super Bowl commercial entitled “Puppy Love,” The ad will run in the fourth quarter of the game.

    From Muppets to puppies, Super Bowl ads get cute

    Call it Cute Bowl. Adorable is the name of the game this year as Super Bowl advertisers try to grab your attention. That means lots of “cute” story lines, including a family that’s expecting a new baby and a horse that forms a long-lasting bond with a puppy. The saccharine spots are partly a result of more family-friendly brands like Cheerios and Heinz advertising this year.

    A man sweeps the stage before an event unveiling the Super Bowl XLVIII Roman numerals on Super Bowl Boulevard Wednesday, Jan. 29, 2014, in New York. The Seattle Seahawks are scheduled to play the Denver Broncos in the NFL Super Bowl XLVIII football game on Sunday, Feb. 2, in East Rutherford, N.J.

    Frigid Super Bowl will affect refs more than players

    While the Denver Broncos and Seattle Seahawks will get opportunities to sit on warmed benches and in front of portable heaters on the sideline, the officials will be far less mobile and standing on a field for more than 3 hours at the coldest Super Bowl in the game's 48-year history. Bitter cold can cause more than just discomfort; it might lead to a loss of focus for those making snap rules decisions in the NFL's biggest game of the season, former officials said.

    The Roman numerals for Super Bowl XLVIII are unveiled on Super Bowl Boulevard Wednesday, Jan. 29, 2014, in New York. The Seattle Seahawks are scheduled to play the Denver Broncos in the NFL Super Bowl XLVIII football game on Sunday, Feb. 2, in East Rutherford, N.J.

    A Super Bowl economic boom for NYC? Hard to say

    Will the snowy New York City area really reap an estimated $600 million economic boost from the Super Bowl? Probably not. Despite such lofty predictions, sports economists say the financial impact of the Super Bowl could be fall far below expectations, in part because visitors often spend their cash at NFL-sponsored or corporate events rather than at tourist attractions.


    North Chicago survives test from Vernon Hills

    Three nights after Grant’s boys basketball team nearly upset North Chicago, Vernon Hills nearly did the same Saturday. The Cougars missed what would have been a game-winning 3-pointer, and host North Chicago escaped with a 72-70 win in North Suburban Prairie Division action.


    Farmland to the west of Route 47 is listed for sale as part of Huntley’s corporate industrial park. Huntley is positioning itself as the next major industrial hub in the suburban Chicago market.

    Huntley seeks to become next industrial hub

    Huntley is positioning itself as the next major industrial hub in the suburban Chicago market, competing with towns such as Elk Grove Village and Carol Stream. The village is poised for a major marketing campaign to promote its Huntley Corporate Park near the new interchange at I-90 and Route 47. “We’re one of the few communities that has this developed land with tollway visibility,” said Victor Narusis, Huntley’s business recruitment coordinator.


    Work advice: What’s worse than rejection? No reply.

    I’ve been hearing from enough jilted job-seekers to start a Miss Lonelyhires column. Being turned down is hard enough; can we at least establish a baseline of common courtesy? As with dating, a clear “no, thanks” generally beats dead silence, and the nature of a rejection should mirror the nature of the relationship. At a minimum, mass applicants are due an auto-reply confirming receipt and another when the position is filled.

    Gone are the days when lenders handed out mortgages without requiring documentation and down payments. Today’s purveyors of subprime call the loans “nonprime’”and require as much as 30 percent down to safeguard their investment. And they see a big opportunity for growth as tougher federal lending standards shut out millions of Americans with poor credit from the mortgage market.

    Subprime mortgages make a comeback as ‘nonprime’

    Gone are the days when lenders handed out mortgages without requiring documentation and down payments. Today’s purveyors of subprime call the loans “nonprime’”and require as much as 30 percent down to safeguard their investment. And they see a big opportunity for growth as tougher federal lending standards shut out millions of Americans with poor credit from the mortgage market.

    In ths photo from November 2013, Josie Barton, 7, left, records audio into an iPad for an iMovie project with classmate Marin Peale, 7, in their multi-grade first and second grade class at Jamestown Elementary School in Arlington, Va. Needed to keep a school building running these days: Water, electricity — and broadband.

    Companies back fast Internet-in-schools initiative

    The White House says it’s lined up private support for President Barack Obama’s pledge to connect 15,000 schools and 20 million students with high-speed Internet service over the next few years.


    Unconstrained bond funds: What you should know

    Bond funds aren’t boring anymore. A new kind is on the scene, after many of the formerly steady and reliable workhorse investments lost money last year for the first time in more than a decade. Analysts say conditions will remain tough for bonds, but the industry says these funds can better withstand the challenges.


    Four factors to look at when considering auto loan refinancing

    A lower car payment, what’s not to like?It’s an enticing proposition, but refinancing an auto loan can often significantly increase the amount you have to pay over the life of a loan.“The concept of lowering your monthly payments will often outweigh the financial sensibility of that decision,” said Jack Gillis, auto expert for the Consumer Federation of America.And yet, a growing number of borrowers are electing to refinance their auto loan. Last year, auto loan refinance inquiries on LendingTree.com nearly doubled from a year earlier, according to the online lending service. Completed loans jumped 47 percent from the previous year.But when might refinancing your auto loan be a smart move? Here are four factors to consider:1. Interest RatesRefinancing an auto loan enables you to pay off your lender and take on a new loan at a more favorable annual percentage rate, or APR.That means that you generally wouldn’t consider refinancing unless you can get a lower APR. But there is an exception: If you want to lower your monthly payment and are willing to extend the repayment period for your loan. Of course, you will be paying more money over time.Unlike mortgage loan refinancing, lenders generally don’t charge fees or closing costs to refinance an auto loan. That places a priority on shopping around for the best rate. In recent weeks, auto loan refinancing offers on LendingTree have been available for 1.99 percent for borrowers with the best credit scores.Check lender websites or portals like Bankrate.com or LendingTree.com.2. Estimated SavingsThe most attractive outcome in any refinancing is to lower the amount of you will repay during the term of the loan.Maybe you didn’t shop around when you went car shopping and feel you could have negotiated a lower interest rate. Or perhaps your credit score has improved significantly since you took out your auto loan, so you are now able to qualify for a lower interest rate. Refinancing could trim your finance charges. Paying off your original loan when you refinance could help boost your credit score, as the loan would show up in your credit history as paid off. Lenders and financial information sites often have online calculators that can help you estimate whether a new loan will save you money. Many free financial apps are also available for smartphone and tablet users.3. Term Of LoanProlonging the life of a car loan also can be risky because — unlike real estate which can appreciate — cars lose their value over time. Extending the loan term means that you will owe more on the vehicle than it’s worth for a longer period.“This is a terrible position to be in if the car gets stolen or gets in a serious accident or you desperately need to sell,” said Gillis.One rule of thumb: If you have less than two years left on your loan, avoid refinancing. “If it’s a cash-flow issue, it’s a consideration, but I wouldn’t do it,” said Rick Finch, general manager of LendingTree’s auto segment.4. Lender LimitationsBanks often cap both the amount they will lend and the repayment period for a refinancing. They may also limit the kinds of vehicles that are eligible. Some lenders won’t refinance loans on motorcycles or recreational vehicles, for example. And typically, lenders will only refinance vehicles that are no older than seven years.

    United Parcel Service Inc. said it will spend more than $100 million to improve peak-period service after a late surge in online Christmas shopping caused missed deliveries that boosted costs.

    UPS to invest more than $100 million after holiday service snarl

    United Parcel Service Inc. said it will spend more than $100 million to improve peak-period service after a late surge in online Christmas shopping caused missed deliveries that boosted costs. With the delivery volume growth rate during the holiday period almost twice what UPS had projected, the company had to add 30,000 more workers than planned, boosting fourth-quarter expenses by as much as $150 million.

    While many of the city’s neighborhoods struggle with blight and crime, Detroit’s downtown and Midtown areas continue to grow.

    Detroit seeing uptick in conventions, visitors

    A conference of Jehovah’s Witnesses later this year is expected to draw 90,000 people to Detroit. The conference will stretch over two weekends at Ford Field and is an example of how Detroit is becoming more of a destination for conventions, despite the city’s recent dive into bankruptcy, according to Larry Alexander, president and chief executive of the Detroit Metro Convention & Visitors Bureau.


    Career Coach: How to get partners to listen; escaping a career

    Q: I am a paralegal who has worked with the same three partners for more than 10 years. None of them exhibits any leadership skills, and they all blame everyone else for any shortcomings.

    Cattle feed in a barn at Hunter Haven Dairy Farm in Pearl City, Illinois, U.S., on Tuesday, Jan. 28, 2014.

    Farm lobby scores again as rural-urban allies top opponents

    The farm bill reflects the clout of rural and urban allies who hung together even when the House of Representatives split them apart, as well as lots of lobbying money. In all, groups pressing for the bill spent more than $100 million in the first nine months of last year.

    There are goodies scattered through the farm bill for members from all regions of the country: a boost in money for crop insurance popular in the Midwest; higher cotton and rice subsidies for Southern farmers; renewal of federal land payments for Western states.

    Farm bill details: Costs, cuts, labeling

    House lawmakers approved a new five-year farm bill this week that would make significant changes to the nation’s farm support programs but also cut billions in food stamp aid. Here’s a look at some of the details of the 939-page agreement.

    A Visa Inc. credit card sits on top of credit and debit cards arranged for a photograph in Washington, D.C., U.S., on Wednesday, Jan. 29, 2014.

    Visa profit beats estimates as consumers boost card spending

    Visa, the biggest bank-card network, posted fiscal first-quarter profit that beat analysts’ estimates as card spending climbed. Visa is benefiting from an uptick in consumer sentiment that has propelled purchases on cards and mobile devices.


    Huntley industrial park faces tough competition

    As Huntley’s fledgling industrial corridor attempts to capture a slice of the manufacturing market, it faces tough competition from towns with far more established industrial sectors.“We’re a community that’s built on businesses,” Elk Grove Village Mayor Craig Johnson said. “They’ve got 50 years to catch up with us when it comes to experience in development and handling business.”

Life & Entertainment

    This undated frame grab provided by Toyota, shows the company's 2014 Super Bowl commercial. Toyota has enlisted the Muppets for this year's advertising campaign.

    Lighter year for Super Bowl ads

    From the light humor of RadioShack poking fun at its image with '80s icons like Teen Wolf and the California raisins to a Coca-Cola ad showcasing diversity by singing “America the Beautiful” in different languages, it was a softer night of Super Bowl advertising. So this year, advertisers out of their way to be more family friendly themes: socially conscious statements, patriotic messages and light humor.

    Bruno Mars performs during the halftime show of the NFL Super Bowl XLVIII football game between the Seattle Seahawks and the Denver Broncos Sunday in East Rutherford, N.J.

    Bruno Mars delivers red hot set at Super Bowl

    Anybody worried about how Bruno Mars would do on one of the world's largest stages had obviously never seen the young star perform live. Mars, 28, took his high-powered live show to Super Bowl halftime, creating what felt like an intimate show in the arena in East Rutherford, N.J., and supersizing it in what has become a defining moment for those who preceded him on the list of halftime performers in the big game.

    Cacao beans can be ground into nibs, a healthful chocolate alternative.

    Cacao nibs are chock-full of nutrients

    For those of you who do not yet have cacao nibs in your pantry, here is the quick sell: Nibs are essentially chopped cacao beans. Cacao beans are the main ingredient in chocolate, so they have that delicious chocolate flavor and the knack for boosting moods, without the unhealthful added sugar. Cacao nibs and powder (as opposed to the cocoa powder you might already have at home) use the name “cacao” to designate the raw, unprocessed version of the bean. These beans are a powerhouse of nutrition, as described by David Wolfe in his book “Superfoods.”


    JK Rowling says ‘Harry Potter’ ending may be wrong

    Harry Potter author J.K. Rowling is having second thoughts about having ended the series with heroine Hermione Granger paired up romantically with Ron Weasley. She told the magazine she “wrote the Hermione/Ron relationship as a form of wish fulfillment” and said the couple might eventually need relationship counseling.

    This image released by Universal Pictures shows Ice Cube, left, and Kevin Hart in a scene from the film, “Ride Along.” The film kept its hold on the top spot at the box office with a $12.3 million haul.

    ‘Ride Along,’ ‘Frozen’ top box office

    With Super Bowl XLVII weekend in full swing, “Ride Along” remained strong, steering Universal Pictures into the No. 1 slot in a surprising three-week takeover at the box office. Disney’s “Frozen,” now the fourth highest-grossing domestic animated release ever, is in second place with $9.3 million.


    She’s anxious over his anxiety and fitness

    Q. My boyfriend and I are in our early 20s, and have been together for about 2½ years. In recent months we’ve talked of “being together for the long haul.” The problem is this: While I see the value in very healthy eating and daily exercise, he isn’t quite on the same page.

    Shibori lamp shades from the Suzusan Luminaires collection.

    Shibori: an ancient art now revamped and revisited

    From tablecloths to duvet covers, iPhone cases to wallpaper and startling calf-skin wall hangings, the ancient Japanese resist-dying technique of shibori has gone mainstream. Vera Wang, Ralph Lauren, Eileen Fisher, Levi’s and innumerable fiber artists are breathing new life into the craft.

    The Woodstock Theatre hosts free screenings of the 1993 classic comedy film

    Sunday picks: Woodstock celebrates 'Groundhog Day'

    Laugh along with Bill Murray in "Groundhog Day," which will be screened Saturday and Sunday at the Woodstock Theatre. The Beatles tribute band The Cavern Beat headlines at the Vernon Area Public Library District in honor of the 50th anniversary of the Beatles' first performance on “The Ed Sullivan Show” in February of 1964. Meet with fellow fans of uniforms, weaponry and more at the Military History Fest Reenacting and Trade Faire ending today at Pheasant Run Resort's Mega Center.

    Kate Winslet stars in “Labor Day,” a tale of a mother and son upended when a convict appears in their lives.

    For Winslet, motherhood mingles with ‘Labor Day’

    She may be a regular honoree at awards shows and a constant presence in prestigious projects from “Sense and Sensibility” to “The Reader.” But Kate Winslet, who grew up in a large, working-class family outside London, has an uncommon candor and easy uninhibitedness that has made her both an engagingly down-to-earth personality and a naturalistic actress with quick access to deep emotions.

    Actress Kristen Stewart has signed on to play the lead in Drake Doremus’ futuristic love story “Equals,” and it’s making her a nervous wreck.

    Kristen Stewart ‘terrified’ to film ‘Equals’

    Kristen Stewart has signed on to play the lead in “Like Crazy” director Drake Doremus’ futuristic love story “Equals,” and it’s making her a nervous wreck. “I can’t believe I agreed to do it,” said the “Twilight” actress about her upcoming role in the sci-fi drama, which also stars Nicholas Hoult of the upcoming “X-Men: Days of Future Past.” Stewart describes “Equals” as a slightly updated version of the 1956 film “1984,” based on George Orwell’s classic 1949 novel about rebellion in a repressed futuristic society. “Equals” begins filming later this year.

    Suri, a Siberian husky, is one of the starters in “Puppy Bowl X,” airing at 2 p.m. Sunday on Animal Planet.

    10 things to love about ‘Puppy Bowl’

    This year, the “Puppy Bowl” has become an institution. Animal Planet’s annual cute-overload counterprogramming to the Super Bowl on Sunday has reached it milestone 10-year anniversary. And it’s pulling out all the stops: Penguins! Keyboard Cat! A live Times Square experience! And it had better, because for the first time, the show has competition in the form of the copycat (heh) “Kitten Bowl” on the Hallmark Channel and a “Fish Bowl” on Nat Geo Wild.

    Children can try on traditional clothing at the Kohl Children's Museums's exhibit “Japan and Nature: Spirits of the Season.”

    Kohl's exhibit examines Japanese culture through the seasons

    Developed by the Brooklyn Children's Museum, the exhibit “Japan and Nature: Spirits of the Season” first ran at Glenview's Kohl Children's Museum in 2007. Providing a look at Japanese culture through the lens of the four seasons, the exhibit proved so popular that the museum brought it back this week.


    Short sale can be terminated if deadline not met

    Q. I got way behind on my mortgage and my mortgage company filed a foreclosure complaint against me. I got a short sale buyer in October but the sale has still not been approved by my mortgage company. Recently I learned I may inherit some money, so I may want to cancel the sale.


    Building a sunroom is not an inexpensive project

    Q. I want to add a solar sunroom for inexpensive extra living space and so it will help heat our house. I would like to build a kit myself or to make one from scratch. What things should I consider?


    Old concrete may have been attempt to trap air bubbles

    Q. I have a friend who purchased a house that had been built in the 1940s or '50s. She is now having the bathroom completely “gutted.” The contractor told her that behind the existing walls in the shower area the original builder had put metal shavings (wire) with concrete then poured over this wire.


    Illinois Speaker of the House Michael Madigan, D-Chicago, left, looks on as Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn, right, delivers the State of the State Address to a joint session of the General Assembly in the House chambers last week at the Illinois State Capitol in Springfield Ill. (AP photo)

    Editorial: Madigan’s bid to cut corporate taxes

    A Daily Herald editorial says that no matter his motivation, House Speaker Michael Madigan's plan to cut the corporate income tax rate is a good start to restoring Illinois' business climate


    Now online: Bare knuckles political brawl!

    Did one candidate call his rival "stupid"? A contentious session between challengers for a seat in the state legislature underscores the value of a new Daily Herald feature: unedited audio recordings of our candidate endorsement sessions. Jim Davis, DuPage/Fox Valley news director explains.


    Obama’s thin agenda

    Columnist Michael Gerson: Crafting a State of the Union address often raises an internal debate at the White House: When should a president dispute a negative judgment by the public and when should he cede it and promise better?


    Herald’s bias is obvious on gay marriage
    An Arlington Heights letter to the editor: Yes, I know the topic of gay marriage is news (though not very timely ). But don’t try to arrest our attention as if gay marriage is something all your readers should accept and value as a social norm.


    Midwest work ethic invaluable this season
    A Des Plaines letter to the editor: Hey, we’re Midwesterners. We put on our coat, hat, gloves, scarfs and boots, take care of business and do what needs doing. For that we are justifiably forever proud.


    Speak up against disrespect — maybe?
    An Arlington Heights letter to the editor: The day after the State of the Union speech, I overheard two older men talking. One of them was saying an all-too familiar rant: “He lied when he said that we could keep our doctors, he is nothing but a lia


    Washington praised contributions of Irish
    A Wauconda letter to the editor: February Is the month we honor the memory of our first president. It is appropriate to remember some of George Washington’s words. These are some he spoke in gratitude and encouragement for the Irish.


    Farm bill is rife with wasteful spending
    A Sleepy Hollow letter to the editor: According to a Jan. 27 Bloomberg report, a farm bill is advancing largely keeping food stamp spending intact as well as preserving most farm subsidies. While the bill reins in some of the food stamp abuses that expanded the program to 47.4 million or 15 percent of the population it does not go far enough to bring this program under control.


    Bulk mail unwelcome in any language
    A Wheaton letter to the editor: With bemusement, I read the Jan. 26 letter that was in response to a Jan, 18 letter, regarding receiving direct mail correspondence from their banks in Spanish, which, as English speaking persons, they could not read. Both writers were expressing their honest opinions and views, and that’s great.


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