Estonian offers insights into his country

Better late than never isn't always my mantra as a reporter at a daily newspaper.

But in this case, a late response from one of the Estonian visitors to Grove Junior High School in Elk Grove Village landed in my inbox just in time for me to include in this column.

So that's good news, even though it was too late to get his response in the story I wrote on their visit.

The following are the impressions of Sulev Valdmaa, head of Civic Education Centre of the Jaan T├Ánisson Institute in Tallinn, Estonia, on his recent visit.

Q: What is something you want our readers to know about Estonia?

A: Americans in general know about Estonia very little. It is because our country is small. But I think every Estonian wants that people in other countries could know that we are a democracy in Northern Europe, members of EU (the European Union) and NATO, rather successful in information and communications technology

Estonia is in many ways a very liberal country, which has been the major factor of our post-socialist economical success -- foreign investors loved our economical freedoms.

Many people speak three to four foreign languages. It is because if you are a small nation, nobody is going to talk to you in your language. To communicate with the others, you better learn their languages. All you need to know about Estonia is on the Web site

A moving force: Moving Force, the Elk Grove Park District dance company, recently showed their stuff in the BravO! National Dance and Talent Competition.

During the recent three-day event in Libertyville, in which both the junior and senior teams participated, Moving Force received 10 gold and four silver trophies.

Their next competition is with Dance Makers Inc. April 11-13 at the Hyatt Regency in Schaumburg.

Anyone between ages 8 and 18 can try out for Moving Force. For details, call the Pavilion Dance Center at (847) 228-3519.

Book sale, plus VHS tapes: Friends of the Des Plaines Public Library will hold their spring used book sale from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday and 1 to 5 p.m. Sunday.

A preview sale for members of the friends group will be from 6 to 9 p.m. Friday. Memberships may be purchased at the pre-sale for $5.

Since the library is retiring its VHS collection, you can peruse its tapes for purchase. In addition to tapes, other materials for sale include children's books, newer hardcover fiction and nonfiction books, paperbacks, CDs and donated items.

Proceeds will be used for library programs such as the summer reading club, Friends book badges, "Friends Family Sundays," concerts and movies.

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