Agencies strong with hearty core of support

In keeping with the beginning of the summer season with the solstice, June 21, this column will be potpourri of all of the good things that have been happening and will be happening in our area. Our community is blessed with many worthwhile organizations, dedicated volunteers and generous businesses all deserving a bit of recognition.

One vital organization is the Boys and Girls Club of Dundee Township that has a proud tradition of serving youth locally for over 13 years. It is currently providing after-school programs and positive mentoring to over 1,000 at-risk youth and a safe place for them to go and have many positive experiences during the summer. On Friday, June 26, the club will hold its largest fundraising event, Paul Knox Memorial Golf Outing, at Randall Oaks Golf Club in West Dundee. If you are interested in golfing, attending the dinner that evening, or offering to support the club, call Curt McReynolds, executive director, at (847) 551-4309.

Another major organization that serves our community is the Northwest Suburban United Way. Through your generosity, it provides much needed additional funding to many local charities and nonprofit agencies. On June 4, Maggiano's restaurant in Schaumburg was the site of its annual Community Celebration Luncheon. Among those attending was West Dundee village trustee Andy Yuscka. Two of our local businesses, Acme Industrial Co. of Carpentersville and J.C. Penny of Spring Hill Mall, received the prestigious "Heart of the Community" Award. This is presented to corporations or organizations whose dedication and commitment to United Way's mission has improved the lives of countless people in our community.

On Saturday, July 4, our own band of wonderful volunteers, the Sleepy Hollow Service Club, is sponsoring a day filled with old-fashioned pleasures. You can take part in the fun run, walk or stroll that starts at 8:15 a.m. from Sleepy Hollow Elementary School and then show off your fishing skills at the Bob Zdendek Memorial Fishing Derby from 9 to 11 a.m. One of the highlights of the day is the Bill Ritchie Parade beginning at noon and weaving around Sabatino Park.

Food always adds to the Fourth of July enjoyment so there will be many traditional picnic treats available from 11:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. from the refreshment stands. There will even be a pie-eating contest at 2:30 p.m. Throughout the day, youngsters can enjoy the games and pony rides and everyone will enjoy the music provided by Steve and Sylvia and Friends. The day ends with the spectacular fireworks display at dusk. Just in case the weather chooses not to cooperate, the Service Club has set July 5 for a rain date.

One special organization whose goal is to add beauty to our lives is the Fox Valley Rose Society. It held its annual rose show on June 14 at Platt Hill Nursery in Carpentersville. There was tremendous turnout with over 200 roses competing in several different categories. The winners of Best of Show were Jean and Mary Ewaldz with a rose called "Golden Unicorn." Paul and Gerri Gurino were double winners as their "Suffolk" rose won Hybrid-Tea Queen and "Princess of Wales" won Floribunda Spray- Queen. If you are interested in taking up this gardening hobby, the society has volunteer Rosarians who are ready to share their wisdom; just call Ron Rhoades at (847) 426-4593.

Organizations are made up of individuals who are generous with their time and talent. They are usually characteristically anonymous in their efforts and so it is always nice to be able to give them some recognition. One such person is the Honorable James A. Connelly, retired attorney and judge, who was recently named a Melvin Jones Fellow by Lions Clubs International Foundation. This is the highest form of recognition conferred by the foundation which strives to meet humanitarian needs in communities worldwide. He was presented with the plaque at the Dundee Lions Club annual installation banquet. Congratulations to Judge Connelly and a big thank you to all of the volunteers and organizations that make life better for all of us.

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