Marian R. Sanfilippo March 25, 1935 December 3, 2023

Marian R. Sanfilippo | March 25, 1935 ~ December 3, 2023

By Christopher Placek | Daily Herald

Marian Sanfilippo, who with her husband helped nonprofit organizations raise millions of dollars by hosting fundraisers at their famed Barrington Hills estate, has died.

She passed away peacefully at her home Sunday at the age of 88, according to her obituary.

Sanfilippo supported her husband Jasper’s passion for collecting mechanical music machines and vintage steam engines — a collection that grew over the years and led them to construct several additions to showcase it all.

The philanthropists established a family foundation in 2007 to help preserve the artifacts and manage dozens of charitable events held there every year.

Women’s and children’s organizations were among the first recipients of the couple’s generosity, including the Michael Joseph Foundation, Arden Shore, and their parish, Saint Anne Catholic Community in Barrington. Gradually, they expanded their vision to include charities that also benefitted the arts.

“My parents’ passion was supporting women and children, but they came to see the arts as just as important,” their son, Jeffrey Sanfilippo, told the Daily Herald after his father’s death in January 2020. “They realized they could educate people about these beautiful instruments and help them learn more about them.”

Read more here.

A tribute to Mrs. Sanfilippo has been posted to the Sanfilippo Foundation Facebook page, and her obituary can be found here.

Real Estate

By Kevin Bessler | The Center Square

The Illinois housing market may be in the midst of a shift.

survey by the real estate company Clever shows home sellers are lowering their asking prices to meet buyers’ budgets.

The survey of 1,000 people who sold a home in 2022 and 2023 found that 45% of sellers rejected an offer that turned out to be their highest, showing just how quickly home prices have fallen in some parts of the country.

“Some people call it right now a nobody’s market because things aren’t necessarily great on either side of things, but it does seem we are making a move more towards a buyer’s market,” researcher Matt Brannon said.

Mortgage rates continuing to remain at a 20-year high is still influencing decisions in the market.

“We found that 51% of recent sellers told us they were hesitant to sell because they didn’t want to give up their low interest rate,” Brannon said.

The top three reasons people said they sold their home were they wanted a bigger home (40%), it was a good time to sell (37%), and they wanted to move closer to friends and family (30%).

Read more here.

Lynch Christmas

Jane Lynch, center, Kate Flannery and Tim Davis return to the Raue Center for “A Swingin’ Little Christmas.” (Courtesy of The Raue Center)

By Luke Zurawski | Daily Herald


Long Grove Vintage Days: Through Dec. 23 in downtown Long Grove, 145 Old McHenry Road, Long Grove. Carriage rides Fridays through Sundays; holiday caroling; merchant open houses and promotions; and Santa visits from noon to 4 p.m. Dec. 9-10. Free. longgrove.org/festival/holiday-season.

Lightscape: 4:30-9:15 p.m. select days through Jan. 7 at the Chicago Botanic Garden, 1000 Lake-Cook Road, Glencoe. Take an after-dark stroll through an array of illuminated displays from new installments to favorites like the Winter Cathedral. In advance: $30-$34 for adults, $17-$19 for kids 3-12; day of: $33-$37 for adults, $19-$21 for kids 3-12. Some dates are sold out. chicagobotanic.org/lightscape.

Santa’s Village Drive-Thru Holiday Attraction: 5-10 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays and 5-9 p.m. Sundays through Dec. 23 at Santa’s Village, 601 Dundee Ave., East Dundee. Drive through over 3 million lights synchronized to holiday music and lights displays. Meet-and-greet Santa Claus at the end. Funnel cakes and hot chocolate for purchase. $35 per vehicle; $25 for season pass holders. Reservations required. SantasVillageDundee.com.

Santa House Visits: 6-8 p.m. Thursdays and Fridays, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturdays, and noon to 3 p.m. Sundays through Dec. 23 at Williams and Brink streets, Crystal Lake. Bring your camera for a visit with Santa in his Santa House. Free. downtowncl.org.

Friday, Dec. 8

Christmas Vocal Jazz with Cheryl Wilson: 7:30 p.m. Friday, Dec. 8, at Barrington’s White House, 145 W. Main St., Barrington. Jazz vocalist Cheryl Wilson performs holiday music. $30. barringtonswhitehouse.com.

Frozen Flurry Fest: 5-7 p.m. Friday, Dec. 8, at Lake in the Hills Village Hall, 600 Harvest Gate, Lake in the Hills. Take a self-guided walk through a snow and ice walkway inspired by “Frozen” with lights, character encounters and a visit with Santa. Free for preregistered residents or $2 for nonresidents; at the gate: $2-$4. lith.org/Home/Components/News/News/1253/16.

Elgin Symphony’s Yuletide concert: 8 p.m. Friday, Dec. 8, at the Raue Center for the Arts, 26 N. Williams St., Crystal Lake. Seasonal music led by conductor Chad Goodman. $55-$65. elginsymphony.org.


Shop for gifts at the Antique Vintage Flea Market and Holiday Market this weekend at the Lake County Fairgrounds in Grayslake. Daily Herald File Photo

Saturday, Dec. 9

Antique Vintage Flea Market and Holiday Market: 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 9, and 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 10, at the Lake County Fairgrounds, 1060 E. Peterson Road, Grayslake. Antiques, vintage estate jewelry, clothing, collectibles, furniture, decor, old toys, advertising, coins and more. Admission: $8, good for both days; free for kids 12 and younger with an adult. Free parking. zurkopromotions.com.

Fremd Viking Booster Club Holiday Craft Fair: 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 9, at William Fremd High School, 1000 S. Quentin Road, Palatine. Art and craft vendors in a variety of media, concessions and more. fremdboosterclub.org/craft-fair.

Santa Paws: 10 a.m. to noon Saturday, Dec. 9, at Clayson House Museum & Library, 224 E. Palatine Road, Palatine. Snap a photo of your pooch with Santa. $15-$20. Register for a time slot at palatineparks.org.

Winter Fest: 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 9, at Bridges of Poplar Creek Country Club, 1400 Poplar Creek Drive, Hoffman Estates. Family photo opportunities, iceless skating, s’mores making, Festival of Fun, Gingerbread House Making contest (preregistration required), sled dogs, carnival games and more. Free entry. heparks.org.

Winter Frostival: 10 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 9, at the Arlington Heights Historical Museum, 110 W. Fremont St., Arlington Heights. Visit with the Ice Princess, Ice Queen and Santa Claus, plus cookies, cocoa, carolers, story time and more. Free. ahpd.org.

Christmas in the Valley: Noon to 4 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, Dec. 9-10, at Heritage Farm at Spring Valley, 201 S. Plum Grove Road, Schaumburg. Experience an 1880s holiday with traditional treats, kids’ crafts, marshmallows and warm beverages around a bonfire and a visit from Father Christmas. Park at St. Matthew Parish and follow the signs to Spring Valley. $3 per person; $12 per family. Register at parkfun.com.


Music Director Chad Goodman and the Elgin Symphony Orchestra will present “Holiday Spectacular” that also features the Elgin Master Chorale and Integrity School of Dance on Saturday and Sunday, Dec. 9-10, at the Hemmens in Elgin. (Courtesy of Donna Lake)

Elgin Symphony’s Holiday Spectacular: 2:30 and 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 9, and 2:30 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 10, at the Hemmens, 45 Symphony Way, Elgin. Elgin Symphony Orchestra, led by conductor Chad Goodman, is joined by Integrity School of Dance and Elgin Master Chorale. $20-$65; free for kids 17 and younger with a paid adult. elginsymphony.org.

Boston Brass, “Christmas Bells are Swingin'”: 5 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 9, at Ravinia Festival, 200 Ravinia Park Road, Highland Park. Christmas concert with the All-Star Brass Big Band. $40. ravinia.org.

Let It Snow planetarium shows: 5 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 9, at McHenry County College, 8900 Route 14, Crystal Lake. Festive full-dome video images choreographed to classic Christmas music. $12. mchenry.edu/events/index.html

The Christmas Star planetarium show: 7-8 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 9, at McHenry County College, 8900 Route 14, Crystal Lake. Potential natural explanations for the Star of Bethlehem and learn about common modern-day misconceptions. $12. mchenry.edu/events/index.html.

Jane Lynch’s “A Swingin’ Little Christmas”: 8 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 9, and 1 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 10, at the Raue Center for the Arts, 26 N. Williams St., Crystal Lake. A twist on the Christmas specials of the 1950s and ’60s with Jane Lynch, Kate Flannery, Tim Davis and The Tony Guerrero Quintet. $50-$70. rauecenter.org.

Sunday, Dec. 10

Artisans Market Winter Arts & Crafts Fair: Noon to 5 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 10, at Wild Onion Brewery and Banquets, 22221 N. Pepper Road, Lake Barrington. Handmade works of local juried artists, crafters, bakers and chefs. Free. artisan-markets.com.

Monday, Dec. 11

Schaumburg Youth String Ensemble Winter Concert: 7 p.m. Monday Dec. 11, at the Al Larson Prairie Center for the Arts, 201 Schaumburg Court, Schaumburg. Tickets: $9 adults, $5 for kids 18 and younger in advance; $11 adults, $7 for kids 18 and younger at the door. prairiecenter.org.

Wednesday, Dec. 13

Holiday Trolley Express: 4-7:30 p.m. Wednesday and Thursday, Dec. 13-14, at Gary Morava Recreation Center, 110 W. Camp McDonald Road, Prospect Heights. The trolley tours past houses decorated for the season, plus hear a story from one of Santa’s helpers, sing Christmas carols, visit with Santa, and enjoy cookies and hot chocolate. $15-$17. Register at phparks.org.

On Stage

“The Nutcracker”: 7 p.m. Thursday and Friday, Dec. 7 and 8, and 1 and 5 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, Dec. 9 and 10, at the Al Larson Prairie Center for the Arts, 201 Schaumburg Court, Schaumburg. Tchaikovsky’s timeless ballet follows courageous young Clara on her journey through an enchanted land of dancing snowflakes to the court of the Sugar Plum Fairy. $26-$38. prairiecenter.org.

“The Day Before Christmas”: 7 p.m. Friday Dec. 8, and 3 and 7 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 9, at Cutting Hall, 150 E. Wood St., Palatine. It’s the day before Christmas and all the usual characters have been busy at the North Pole getting ready for the big day. That is, until Jack Frost decides to throw in a little chaos and calamity. Proceeds benefit Susannah’s Gift, a cultural arts scholarship fund. $12. cuttinghall.org.

“The Nutcracker Ballet” 2023: 7 p.m. Fridays, Dec. 8 and 15; 2 and 7 p.m. Saturdays, Dec. 9 and 16; and 2 and 6 p.m. Sundays, Dec. 10 and 17, at the Woodstock Opera House, 121 Van Buren St., Woodstock. Judith Svalander School of Ballet transforms the Opera House stage into a realm of fantasy. $20-$45. woodstockoperahouse.com.

Dining with Santa

Breakfast with Santa at Poplar Creek: 8:30 and 11 a.m. Saturday, Dec. 9, at Bridges of Poplar Creek Country Club, 1400 Poplar Creek Drive, Hoffman Estates. Adults: $23.95; kids 4-12: $14.95; free for kids 3 and younger. Reservations are required. (847) 781-3658 or heparks.org.

Find much more here.


By Rick Pearson | Chicago Tribune

The host committee for next year’s Democratic National Convention in Chicago announced Wednesday the creation of an advisory council to assist efforts to ensure broad involvement of businesses owned by diverse racial, ethnic and gender entrepreneurs in the convention.

The council will work with the host committee to set diversity spending goals as well as to establish equity practices, community engagement strategies and contract and event execution plans, the host committee said.

Co-chairing the diversity council are Jaemie Neely, executive director of the Federation of Women Contractors, and Jackie Gomez, executive director of the Hispanic American Construction Industry Association.

The host committee wants to ensure that the August convention “highlights and utilizes Chicago’s robust diverse business community,” said Christy George, the committee’s executive director. Creating the council “is a critical step in ensuring business and individuals from a wide array of backgrounds have a seat at the table where decisions are being made,” George said.

Read more here.

Bears SF

An aerial view shows parking lots near Soldier Field in 2014. (Alex Garcia/Chicago Tribune)

By Robert McCoppin | Chicago Tribune

The Chicago Bears continue to check out a variety of sites in and around Chicago — including the site of Soldier Field — as potential homes for a new stadium, officials said Wednesday.

The Bears are doing due diligence on the viability of the south parking lot at Soldier Field as the location for their next stadium, according to unnamed sources cited by The Parkins & Spiegel Show on WSCR-AM 670 The Score.

The Bears have proposed building a $5 billion enclosed stadium and entertainment and housing complex on the site of the closed Arlington International Racecourse in Arlington Heights. The project has stalled while the team tries to negotiate favorable property taxes for the site.

The Bears reportedly are using the same surveying firm, Compass Surveying Ltd. in Aurora, that they used for Arlington Heights and other potential locations.

In response, the Bears would not confirm the report, but issued the following brief statement:

“As we stated in September earlier this year, we want to appropriately explore all opportunities across Chicagoland for the development of a world-class stadium.”

More here.


We are thrilled to announce our 2023 Winter Concert, Our Favorite Things. The program will feature our five ensembles performing a mix of choral music that celebrates the playful moments of the season and peaceful sounds of winter, along with classical Christmas favorites. There will be one performance on Saturday, December 9 at 4:00 p.m. at Barrington United Methodist Church (98 Il-62, Barrington). The 75-minute concert will be presented without an intermission.

Celebrate the season with BCC – now in our 37th year!  Tickets are $25-purchase at barringtonchildrenschoir.org.


We received this notice today:

“Throughout Christmas, Francesca’s restaurants are delighted to serve the Barrington community by staying open and serving the regular menu alongside special features:

  • Christmas Hours: Open on Christmas Eve from 11 AM to 9:30 PM and Christmas Day from 3 PM to 9 PM.
  • Christmas Specials (available from December 22-25):
    • Zuppa Crema di Aragosta – A delightful blend of crème fraiche and chives for $9.95.
    • Agnolotti Tartufati – Four-cheese agnolotti served with brown butter, black truffle, and chives at $28.95.
    • Risotto all’ Arlecchino – A savory combination of shrimp, sea scallops, manila clams, garlic, spicy cherry tomato sauce, and herbs for $31.95.
    • Bistecca all Tartufati con Patate – A 14 oz dry-aged NY strip paired with brussels sprouts, smashed fingerling potatoes, black truffle, and barolo demi for $54.95.

Simply make a reservation at your nearest Francesca’s location on OpenTable.

Francesca’s Restaurants has been a cherished neighborhood Trattoria, offering classic Italian favorites and sophisticated comfort for over 30 years.”


“At the Dec. 5 Board meeting, the Board held a public hearing for the estimated 2023 tax levy, which is the first step in the process to establish a final levy of property taxes to support the district in 2024. Barrington 220 collects property taxes from Kane, Lake, Cook, and McHenry Counties, and property taxes account for approximately 80% of the district’s annual operating revenues.

If approved, the district expects to receive an overall levy increase of 5.5% compared to last year, however, it is requesting a 6.3% increase in the event new construction is larger than expected. This is inclusive of capped funds and debt service obligations. Based on projections, the total expected tax revenue to be collected in 2024 is $158,062,300. The Board is anticipated to approve the final tax levy on Dec. 19.

As part of the tentative levy, the Board will not issue Debt Service Extension Base (DSEB) this year. This will save local taxpayers approximately $2.5 million.”

Click here to read “tax levy FAQs”

JH 20 - Website Header

By Kevin Bessler | The Center Square

A new report says that Illinois is home to one of the worst judicial hellholes in the country.

The American Tort Reform Foundation (ATRF) identified Illinois, specifically Cook County, as the second worst, the worst ranking in more than a decade.

The report says Illinois rivals California and New York for the most food and beverage class actions in the country due to the state’s reputation for allowing no-injury lawsuits and plaintiff-friendly consumer protection laws. But also the state’s controversial Biometric Information Privacy Act or BIPA is a problem, it says.

The Illinois Supreme Court ruled that every individual biometric information scan counts as a separate violation, meaning a single instance of biometric data collection can result in thousands of distinct claims.

“The way the courts have interpreted the statute doesn’t require that someone suffered an injury in order to bring a case, and when you have matters like that, your going to have more litigation, you’re going to have abuse of outcomes and it fosters an environment of excessive litigation,” ATRF President Tiger Joyce told The Center Square.

The report notes that there are over 1,100 Biometric Information Privacy Act cases pending in Illinois state and federal courts, with just seven law firms representing nearly 70% of the plaintiffs.

Read more here.


By Elizabeth Owens-Schiele | Pioneer Press

The village of Barrington has been designated StormReady by the National Weather Service, joining 93 Illinois communities in being prepared for weather disasters.

Mick Fleming, director of the Joint Emergency Management System, and Mike Bardou of the National Weather Service, presented the designation to Village President Karen Darch during the Nov. 13 board meeting.

Barrington fire Chief John Christian, police Chief Dave Dorn and Village Manager Scott Anderson worked closely with Fleming and others over the last year composing emergency management plans, warnings and community outreach to receive the designation in late October from the National Weather Service, officials explained.

“No community is storm proof but we can be storm-ready to help us save lives,” Fleming said, quoting the motto of the National Weather Service and commending the work conducted by village staff which he described as “no small feat.”

Bardou said the process to become StormReady is not simple and is an ongoing process that will be evaluated again in four years by the National Weather Service.

“There’s more and more severe weather occurring, winter weather, thunderstorms, flooding and our goal is to build a weather [plan] so every community is ready before, during and after severe weather events, and a lot of planning and communication is involved,” he said.

Read more here.