Articles written by Pamela Lannom


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  • History of crashes at Fuller's reviewed

    Pamela Lannom|Updated May 22, 2024

    Following residents’ comments at recent Hinsdale Village Board meetings regarding serious accidents at Fuller’s Car Wash, Village President Tom Cauley decided to do some research of his own. “There were a couple of residents who stood up and talked about previous accidents at the site, and it just didn’t ring a bell with me at all,” Cauley told The Hinsdalean Wednesday morning. “After that, I went back and had the police pull the reports and go through it. “It just didn’t jibe with what residents were saying had happened as...

  • Owners utilize preservation incentives

    Pamela Lannom|Updated May 22, 2024

    Andrew O'Connor and Katie Lambert were thrilled to move from Chicago into an 1883 Gothic Revival home at 136 N. Washington St. in November 2021. They were not as thrilled with the staircase leading to the second floor. "When we moved in, we couldn't bring furniture upstairs. We slept on the first floor, on the mattress on the floor, for a few days. Then we decided we need to renovate," Katie said. Eventually they were able to get a bed upstairs, but they knew a construction...

  • Zion's retiring pastor blessed by time in Hinsdale

    Pamela Lannom|Updated May 22, 2024

    Jay Klein grew up Jewish, which made his conversion to Christianity at age 32 unexpected and "electrifying," in his words. "It's life-changing. My God is not distant and far away. He is close at hand. He has given me his Holy Spirit to live and dwell in me," he said. Klein said he felt he needed to do something, but was uncertain of his next step. At the urging of his pastor, he agreed to spend a week on a mission trip doing street evangelism in New York City. "I saw the rejec...

  • Swastikas found at Hinsdale Middle School

    Pamela Lannom|Updated May 15, 2024

    Swastikas drawn in pencil were discovered in two separate incidents in the span 15 days at Hinsdale Middle School. The first was discovered April 25 on a bathroom wall, and the second, drawn on a music stand, was reported by students Friday. “This symbol of hate and intolerance has no place in our community, and I am disappointed by its presence at our school,” HMS Principal Cory Burke wrote in an email to parents Friday. “I want to assure you that I am taking this incident very seriously and am working diligently to inves...

  • Badminton duo earns sixth at state

    Pamela Lannom|Updated May 15, 2024

    The Hinsdale Central varsity girls badminton team finished a great season with a strong showing at state. Senior doubles players Rachele Cameli and Maria Jiao came in sixth, and the team placed sixth as well. "We had one of the best seasons that we've had overall in a while," head coach Katie Maley said. "This was probably the best team overall I've had in the last four or five years." Cameli and Jiao started out strong, winning their first three matches. Their first loss in t...

  • Summertime soundtrack

    Ken Knutson and Pamela Lannom|Updated May 15, 2024

    The western suburbs will soon be alive with the sound of music. The season of live outdoor concert series is right around the corner, blending the joy of good tunes with the delight of summertime weather. Watch future issues for more information on Hinsdaleans' favorite summer concert series, Uniquely Thursdays. Here are a few others in the area to check out. • Cantigny Park's Summer Concert Series runs from 3 to 5 p.m. Sundays from May 26 to Sept. 1 (no concert June 23). T...

  • Parents want to keep varsity coach

    Pamela Lannom|Updated May 15, 2024

    Supporters of the Hinsdale Central boys gymnastics program were out in force at the Hinsdale High School District 86 Board meeting last week, upset about plans to cut the gymnastics coaching positions at Central. Speakers at the May 9 meeting objected to the proposal as part of a move to combine the Hinsdale Central and Hinsdale South boys gymnastics programs for the next three years. A large crowd of parents and students joined Lena Theotikos, mom of senior gymnast Nikolas,...

  • Catching up with ... Amy Owens

    Pamela Lannom|Updated May 15, 2024

    Amy Owens had undergone a cancer diagnosis, a total mastectomy and chemotherapy when I first met her in 2007. She had generously agreed to meet with me once a month for a year as she recovered from a rare form of breast cancer, invasive triple negative ductile carcinoma, as part of our Making a Difference partnership with Wellness House. I talked to her again in September 2009, about a year after my story was published and days before she celebrated her second year of being...

  • Student athlete profile - Finn Bergin

    Pamela Lannom|Updated May 13, 2024

    Finn Bergin Clarendon Hills When did you first start playing lacrosse? Freshman year. I was only playing baseball at Central and I needed something to do in the spring. I had a few friends playing and decided to try it out. What do you enjoy most about the sport? Specifically this year is definitely the team. We have a really close group of guys and it's just been really special. There are a lot of new varsity players. It's been cool to see them fill their roles and develop...

  • Biddix offers insight into equity work

    Pamela Lannom|Updated May 9, 2024

    Say the words “equity and inclusion,” and people might come up with a number of different definitions. “I am no stranger to the abundance of narratives about what these words mean — and what they might mean in our schools or in a professional or personal aspect as well,” said Chris Biddix, director of equity and inclusion in Hinsdale High School District 86. “I think naming some of those narratives from the start, knowing them, is really important.” Some narratives might suggest that it’s naive and optimistic to try to addre...

  • Couple shares story of ALS diagnosis

    Pamela Lannom|Updated May 8, 2024

    Brian Davis and Katy McNeil began their married life as so many couples do - living in Chicago with plans to start a family one day and move to a house in the suburbs. They met in 2012 as law school students at the University of Michigan and married in 2016. Their first daughter, Ada, arrived four years later. When Ada was still a toddler, Brian began noticing various physical changes. He experienced difficulty swallowing and sometimes slurred his words. The first neurologist...

  • Mother's Day doesn't measure up for some moms

    Pamela Lannom|Updated May 8, 2024

    The Mother's Day images we see always show the perfect celebration. Handsome husbands present their expectant wives with a stunning piece of jewelry. Gorgeous young children bring breakfast in bed to their beautiful mom (who looks like she's been up for an hour doing her hair and makeup). Multi-generational families enjoy fabulous brunch spreads in amazing outdoor gardens. We all know that's not the reality many women will experience on Sunday. Some will face their Mother's...

  • Robbins Park infiltrated by new homes

    Pamela Lannom|Updated May 1, 2024

    Drive down some streets in Robbins Park and only a closer look reveals homes have been torn down and rebuilt. On other blocks, new homes outnumber original ones. Some new construction blends in with the historic neighborhood. Other houses, due to size or design, clearly look out of place. This is true of many residential neighborhoods in Hinsdale, but Robbins Park has been a National Register Historic District since 2008. At that time, 65 percent of its 475 homes were deemed...

  • Camps support athletes, programs

    Pamela Lannom|Updated May 1, 2024

    Before the final IHSA state tournaments are held, some coaches and athletes at Hinsdale Central will start preparing for the fall season - and beyond. The athletic department is offering summer camps in a dozen sports and one in strength and conditioning, with some holding sessions for athletes as young as first grade. Among the offerings will be one new one - girls flag football. "It's starting from scratch, truly, because out of my 23 years of coaching, this is brand...

  • Farewell to my godfather, aka Wee Wee the elf

    Pamela Lannom|Updated May 1, 2024

    I'll never forget a phone call I got one December when I was a kid. It was an elf calling from the North Pole! My own personal elf, he told me. I asked his name and was surprised when he said "Wee Wee." "Wee Wee?" I asked, wondering if he had a bed-wetting problem. He explained that was his name because he was a wee little elf. He told me a bit about Santa's preparations for the big day and after a short talk, hung up. I was too little to know that Santa's real elves don't...

  • Student athlete profile - Ana Hodneland

    Pamela Lannom|Updated Apr 24, 2024

    Ana Hodneland Hinsdale When did you start running? I ran in seventh grade at HMS. I didn't have a season in eighth grade because of COVID. I joined the track team my sophomore year because I did soccer freshman year. What has kept you involved? I like the team atmosphere and being able to compete with and against all the girls on the team. I've been playing club soccer all my life. It's been fun to switch it up with track the past three years. What is your favorite event?...

  • No rush to welcome AI into our newsroom

    Pamela Lannom|Updated Apr 24, 2024

    I couldn't help but notice the headline of a Poynter article in a recent "E&P" digital newsletter: "AI is already reshaping newsrooms, AP study finds." The real shock was in the subhead: "Despite ethical concerns, nearly 70 percent of newsroom staffers recruited for an Associated Press survey say they're using generative AI to create content." As I'm sure you might guess, I fall into the 30 percent who are not using generative AI. Apparently, others are using it to create soci...

  • Volunteers highlight rewards of the job

    Pamela Lannom|Updated Apr 24, 2024

    "Instead of cursing the darkness, light a candle." - Benjamin Franklin In honor of National Volunteer Month, The Hinsdalean reached out to four Hinsdale residents who have spent years, even decades, volunteering to ask them why the work is important and what they enjoy most about it. Peggy Bremner has spent Monday mornings for the past 4 1/2 years volunteering at the front desk of Wellness House. "I was looking for local nonprofits that I could get involved with, and Wellness...

  • Wellness House walk to hit the streets

    Pamela Lannom|Updated Apr 24, 2024

    As a radiation oncologist at Good Samaritan Hospital in Downers Grove, Arpi Thukral often struggled to help her cancer patients find psycho-social support, exercise programs and nutrition resources. "That's when I first had found out about Wellness House," she said. Thukral is serving as co-chair of this year's Walk for Wellness House on Sunday, May 5. Touring the Hinsdale facility, coordinating the annual fundraising ball and joining the board of directors deepened her...

  • Central's Zust brings zest for coaching

    Pamela Lannom|Updated Apr 17, 2024

    When Brittany Zust first became head coach of the varsity softball team at Hinsdale Central, she quickly recognized one goal she needed to achieve: grow youth softball. The Orland Park native said many Chicago suburbs - particularly in the southwest - have competitive softball programs for young girls that lead to experienced high school players. That was not the case in Hinsdale, and she discovered not everyone agreed it should be. "Stop trying to bring a blue collar sport...

  • 'Just one more thing' will be the death of me

    Pamela Lannom|Updated Apr 17, 2024

    I was really looking forward to having dinner with a friend last Friday night. My husband and daughter were both going to be out, and I was excited for the chance to relax and catch up with her. I was all ready to go when I decided I had time to throw a load a laundry into the wash before I left the house. That way I wouldn’t have to stay up late waiting for the clothes to come out of the dryer. I headed downstairs to the laundry room and was still sorting clothes when I h...

  • Ask an expert - GRACE THOMPSON, CANDOR HEALTH EDUCATION INTERN

    Pamela Lannom|Updated Apr 17, 2024

    What is Zyn and why is it harmful? Parents might not be familiar with Zyn, an oral nicotine pouch, but college students certainly are. "It was huge on my campus and we have Illinois Wesleyan right next to us as well," said Grace Thompson, an intern at Candor Health Education who will graduate from Illinois State University with a degree in public health in May. "Between those two schools, it would just be everywhere. There would be younger people who would come down for...

  • More to recycling than meets the curb

    Pamela Lannom|Updated Apr 17, 2024

    With Earth Day coming up next week and spring cleaning on many to-do lists, residents might be wondering what to do with unwanted items — and whether they can be recycled. Many items can be recycled, even if they can’t be placed in a curbside recycling bin, according to DuPage County’s website. As a reminder, curbside recycling in Hinsdale is limited to the following items: aluminum cans and clean foil; plastics (#1, #2, #3, #4, #5 and #7); glass bottles and jars; tin cans and empty aerosol cans; cardboard (cereal boxes, beve...

  • D181 focused on keeping students safe

    Pamela Lannom|Updated Apr 17, 2024

    Community Consolidated Elementary District 181 has taken several steps to keep staff and students safe while still welcoming community members who visit the schools. And the work is not done, said Jeffrey Alstadt, communications director. “We’re constantly looking for ways to continue to enhance the safety efforts at the district,” he said Tuesday. Alstadt highlighted past, current and future initiatives for board members at their meeting Monday night. Previous facilities projects created safety vestibules at the schoo...

  • State superintendent visits District 86

    Pamela Lannom|Updated Apr 10, 2024

    Hinsdale Central got the chance to show off its career and technical education programs - and other areas of the high school - when state Superintendent Tony Sanders came for a visit Friday. School visits are a regular part of the job for Sanders, who works for the Illinois State Board of Education and splits his time between its Springfield and Chicago offices. "I try to spend one day a week in schools," he said. "Being in schools is the best part of my job." The first stop...

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