The Palatine American Legion Post 690 is collecting household items for veterans who are exiting homelessness as part of a program for Military Outreach USA from 11:00 AM until 8:00 PM on October 30th through November 12th at the American Legion 122 West Palatine Road in Palatine.

The veterans who are supported in this program are moving into their first apartment or home after being homeless. Typically, these veterans will move into an empty space so they will need everything from kitchen items and cleaning supplies to linens and toiletries. The Legion will be collecting new personal hygiene items, everything for the bathroom and miscellaneous items such as smoke detectors, light bulbs as well as laundry baskets and detergent.

Military Outreach USA has a formal partnership with the Department of Veterans Affairs so that they and their partners can work closely with every VA medical facility to ensure Veterans at the local level are being served. Their partners at the community level -houses of worship, businesses, civic groups, schools and individuals – utilize the resources and tools they provide to help meet the needs of Veterans at the local level.

The American Legion Family consists of the American Legion, the Sons of the American Legion (S.A.L.) and Legion Auxiliary. The American Legion and Legion Auxiliary began in 1919 while the S.A.L. was created in 1932 as patriotic veterans organizations devoted to mutual helpfulness. These organizations are committed to mentoring and sponsorship of youth programs in our communities, advocating patriotism and honor, promoting a strong national security, and continued devotion to our fellow service members and veterans.

For further information on the American Legion, Legion Auxiliary, the Sons of the American Legion, any of their sponsored events or for membership write to the American Legion, 122 West Palatine Road, Palatine, IL 60067, call them at 847-359-1606, email them at clubadmin@alpost690.us or visit www.alpost690.us.


The contest ahead of a Nov. 3 vote on Gov. J.B. Pritzker’s proposed amendment to the Illinois Constitution remains close. There are many interesting paths forward depending on the eventual outcome of this vote.

The fight over the graduated income tax—or the “Fair Tax,” as Gov. J.B. Pritzker branded it—has rightly been called a battle of the billionaires.

But it’s not just billionaires like Pritzker and his chief opponent on the tax, Citadel founder Ken Griffin, who have big stakes in the tax vote. All of us do.

The contest ahead of a Nov. 3 vote on Pritzker’s proposed amendment to the Illinois Constitution remains close. A source familiar with daily polling data from the pro-amendment side told me the projected outcome is within the margin of error of the polls, too close to call.

Other facts support this. Lt. Gov. Juliana Stratton recently warned about a possible 20 percent tax hike on everyone if the amendment fails. The threat would not be needed if the vote were secure.

Griffin late last month poured another $26.8 million into the campaign to stop the amendment. He wouldn’t have doubled his initial outlay if the outcome weren’t still in play.

It’s astounding the contest is close. The “fair tax” is a soak-the-rich appeal to raise taxes on the top 3 percent of earners. The remaining 97 percent are told their taxes will drop or stay the same. The 6 million taxpayers expecting lower or level tax bills should overwhelm the 190,000 in the top 3 percent who would face a tax hike.

Of course, politics is more than math. It requires understanding the hopes and fears of people, their sense of whom to trust and what to believe. Those concerns help explain why Pritzker’s proposal is not faring better.

Read more from the Better Government Association here.

“Dear Barrington 220 Community: 

During my presentation of the Hybrid Learning plan at the Oct. 6 Board of Education meeting, I discussed how periodically there may be specific classrooms or schools that have to return to Distance Learning mode due to a high number of COVID-19 cases. 

We have been monitoring our health metrics this week on the Northwestern Medicine dashboard. For the first time yesterday we exceeded the Step 3 threshold for Metric #1 (New Cases), when looking at the average of all Barrington 220 zip codes (60010, 60110, 60192, 60021). After further review of the individual zip code data, it is clear that the increase for Metric #1 in the 60110 zip code has been trending significantly above the other zip codes.

Barrington 220 has one school, Sunny Hill Elementary, located in the 60110 zip code. Ninety-nine percent of the students who attend Sunny Hill reside in the 60110 zip code.

We have consulted with our public health officials and we agree that all students who attend Sunny Hill Elementary will remain on Distance Learning next week. We will continue to monitor the situation for that school community and consider a future date to move to the Hybrid mode. 

*All other schools in the district will move forward with the Hybrid plan on Monday, Oct. 19. If you previously signed your child up for Hybrid learning and wish to make a change based on this information, please contact your school principal.*

As a reminder, we must all continue working together to keep our community healthy. We have many mitigation procedures in place for the return of our students. If your child is planning to return to school in the Hybrid mode on Oct. 19, please remember to complete the COVID-19 Symptom Screening BEFORE heading to school each day. I also urge you to continue wearing your mask, washing your hands and maintaining social distance.” 

Editorial note:  The Northwestern Medicine dashboard link was not functioning in the 220 update we received last night.   

“Dear Barrington 220 Community, 

As you may be aware, Superintendent of Schools Dr. Brain Harris will be retiring at the end of June after serving more than 30 years in public education. The Board is working with search firm School Exec Connect to select the district’s next leader.

At our Oct. 6 Board of Education meeting, the Board shared an upcoming opportunity for community members to provide input on the district’s superintendent search. A Virtual Community Forum was scheduled for Monday, Nov. 2 at 7pm. 

*Due to parent/teacher conferences happening at Barrington High School on that day, the virtual community forum date has changed to Thursday, Nov. 5 at 7pm.*

During the virtual forum, community members will be able to provide input on the district’s strengths, the district’s challenges, and the characteristics the next superintendent should possess. If you would like to participate in the forum, please click here to register.

The Board is also asking community members to fill out an online questionnaire. It should only take about five minutes to complete and it will be available until Oct. 30, 2020. Click here to complete the online questionnaire.

Thank you for your feedback, 

Barrington 220 Board of Education”

‘It’s been on our wish list for a long time.’

Southwest Airlines plans to begin flying out of O’Hare International Airport by the middle of next year, the airline announced Monday.

The Dallas-based airline has served Midway Airport since 1985 but has never operated flights from O’Hare.

Before the pandemic, O’Hare didn’t have capacity to let Southwest move in, said Andrew Watterson, Southwest’s chief commercial officer.

Southwest does not intend to reduce service at Midway, which will remain its primary Chicago airport. All destinations Southwest offers at O’Hare will be cities the airline already serves at Midway, which is typically among its four busiest airports.

Watterson declined to comment further on the number of flights or destinations it intends to offer at O’Hare, saying it is still working on those plans with the city’s Aviation Department.

Read on here.

Former 220 Superintendent Dr. Tom Leonard moved to Austin, Texas in 2014 to escape some Barrington parents and students. He is now superintendent of Eanes Independent School District. It remains to be seen where Dr. Harris will be hanging his ever escalating pension hat.

“At its Oct. 6 meeting, the Board shared a couple of upcoming opportunities for community members to provide input on the district’s superintendent search. The Board is working with search firm School Exec Connect to select the district’s next leader. Dr. Brian Harris will be retiring at the end of June after serving more than 30 years in public education.

  • Online Questionnaire: First, the Board is asking community members to fill out an online questionnaire. It should only take about five minutes to complete and it will be available until Oct. 30, 2020. Click here to complete the online questionnaire
  • Virtual Community Forum: In addition to the questionnaire, if you would like to provide input on the district’s strengths, the district’s challenges, and the characteristics the next superintendent should possess, the Board of Education and School Exec Connect consultants invite you to attend a virtual open forum on Monday, Nov. 2 at 7pm. Please click here to register for the forum.

Please note, Barrington 220 staff members will receive a separate email where you can sign up for a virtual staff forum. Findings from the questionnaire, the virtual forum, and several focus group conversations will be used to develop a New Superintendent Profile that will be reported to the Board at its November 17 regularly scheduled meeting.

If you have any questions regarding the search, please contact consultant Dr. Kevin O’Mara at: kevin.omara@schoolexecconnect.com.”

The 2020 Barrington Area Chamber of Commerce Outstanding Women Leaders recipients from left, are: Darby Hills of Barrington Children’s Charities; Rebecca Darr, president/CEO of Wings Program, Inc.; the Rev. Dr. Zina Jacque of the Community Church of Barrington; and Mary Roesch, RN, BSN, chief nursing officer of Advocate Good Shepherd Hospital. (Courtesy of Barrington Area Chamber of Commerce)

The Barrington Area Chamber of Commerce and Women’s Biz Net honored four local women leaders during the third annual Outstanding Women Leaders Awards Luncheon Sept. 24 at a hybrid, livestream program at Biltmore Country Club in North Barrington.

Hosted by the Barrington Area Chamber of Commerce, the COVID-conscious event included a small, in-person luncheon and program to honor the award recipients and hear their personal stories. The awards program was also streamed live via Zoom to Outstanding Women Leaders Awards supporters and included audience reactions for the viewing audience.

The 2020 Class of Outstanding Women Leaders recipients honored at the event were: Mary Roesch, RN, BSN, chief nursing officer of Advocate Good Shepherd Hospital, Outstanding Women Leaders recipient for Professional Excellence; Rebecca Darr, president/CEO of Wings Program, Inc., the Outstanding Women Leaders recipient for Nonprofit Leadership; Darby Hills of Barrington Children’s Charities, Outstanding Women Leaders recipient for Community Impact; and the Rev. Dr. Zina Jacque from Community Church of Barrington, Outstanding Women Leaders recipient for Mentorship and Education.

For more information visit www.BarringtonChamber.com.

Prince Charming the Giant Toad is admired by the crowd.

The last bales of straw have gone and all that remain are the fall decorations dressing the village hall entryway, welcoming residents and visitors alike. A great time was had by all at the 8th Annual The Hills Are Alive Fall Festival. This year was a year of “firsts.”

The Fall Festival was held on Barrington Hills’ Village Hall grounds for the first time, which proved to adequately accommodate the scaled down fest due to social distancing guidelines. Attendance was a steady stream of people throughout the afternoon – happy to be outside doing something.

Attendees enjoyed the fall breeze; a clear, bright, sunny day; the tang of the BBQ; the sweet notes of sugary delights; and responsibly distanced entertainment.

This was the first year we had an electronic greeter, so-to-speak: The Klean Tunnel. Resident and CEO John Allegretti of Naturally Klean, sponsored The Hills Are Alive Fall Festival by bringing his innovative technology for sanitization. The Klean Tunnel automatically took entrants’ temperatures, dispensed hand sanitizer and misted folks with an FDA/EPA approved antimicrobial.

Other firsts were:

  • 2020 Census generously donated masks reminding residents to “make it count.”
  • Ivy Noemi (singer, songwriter and musician) engaged the crowd with her renditions of genre favorites, connecting with enthusiasts of all ages.
  • Stillman Nature Center brought a variety of owls, hawks and falcons to exhibit during their presentation of “Birds of Prey.”
  • The “Chairman of the Boards” Baggo Charity Tourney, in conjunction with straw bale donations, generated over $300 for the Barrington Township Food Pantry.

While some things were new at the Fest, some things remained the same – and gratefully so. Glowby the Bubbler, Scales ‘n Tales Travelling Zoo, and SOUL Harbor Ranch Animal Therapy Program enticed the crowd with their stories and activities that not only captivated the children but their parents too!

Heybeck’s Meat Market & Gourmet Catering and The SweetSpot didn’t disappoint. Attendees enjoyed the succulent grilled fare and complemented their lunch with a satisfying, tasty treat! Children left the fest with kites and bubbles in hand and a hop, skip and a jump of joy.

The Village is continually grateful to all who made this fest possible: our donors, sponsors, volunteers and most of all the visitors who joined us that afternoon, for a chance to get out, experience an afternoon of “normalcy,” and enjoy our valued open spaces. Until next time, know that the Hills ARE Alive and can still be enjoyed.


Barrington theater company Parker Players is investing $100,000 into a renovation that’ll give the iconic Catlow Theater an additional use: as a performing arts center.

“The Catlow is to Barrington as the opera house is to Woodstock and the Water Tower is to Chicago. It’s an icon. If you look at Barrington’s letterhead, the Catlow is on it,” said Jack Lageschulte, president of the Parker Players board.

Parker Players worked with Catlow owner Tim O’Connor on a contract to renovate the 1920s era theater. The renovation includes a stage, lighting, a new sound system and safety improvements, Lageschulte said.

The Catlow, located at 116 W. Main St., will get a portion of ticket sales, Lageschulte said.

Read on here.

Without consensus on safety, liquefied natural gas needs another look

The Daily Herald and leaders of several of our suburbs were among those arguing years ago that crude oil shipments by train should be restricted to newer, stronger tank cars that are more likely to withstand a derailment or crash without rupturing, exploding and burning.

That viewpoint largely prevailed, with new requirements unveiled in 2015 that mitigate the risk.

But now the federal government is upping the ante, exposing towns along freight rail lines to potential new danger with the judgment that now that tank cars are safer, they can be used to move material that is more volatile.

The U.S. Department of Transportation over the summer authorized railroads to haul liquefied natural gas around the country, even in the face of the National Transportation Safety Board questioning whether doing so would be safe.

Natural gas is a chameleon, turning liquid at -260 degrees and taking up 1/600th of the space it requires as a gas, making it cheaper to transport. If the gas gets overheated and the tank ruptures, such as following a derailment or crash, it can explode violently into a fireball that will keep burning until the fuel is gone.

Read on here.

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