Good news


Troop 10 Eagle Scout Shreemann Patel of Hinsdale recently finished a project for the Distinguished Conservation Service Award.

His project was designed to improve conditions at Lyman Woods in Downers Grove, where a polluted natural pond was surrounded by invasive buckhorn trees, which were chocking out native plants, and the water was filled with particles and dirt. There was also suspected nitrogen within the pond that could promote algae growth, and the water source was runoff from nearby residences as well as the Midwestern University parking lot.

Patel made two sand filters to slowly clean the water over time, removed the invasive buckthorn in a 10-foot radius and planted a buffer of native plants around the garden. Removing invasives is good for sunlight, and also for the animals in the area that will be able to access the pond more easily. The native buffer will provide a shelter and habitat for birds and small mammals, as well as amphibians and reptiles. It will also strengthen the eroded and damaged soil. Buckthorn, which was covering the area, injects a chemical in the ground preventing other things from growing, so herbicide and thorough removal was involved.

Patel also installed a pond aerator.

This is the first of two projects required for the scouting award, which is rarely given.

D181 receives library grant

Community Consolidated Elementary District 181 will receive $2,741 in state grants for public school libraries to support programs and the acquisition of library books, e-books, audiobooks, periodicals, multilingual materials and learning technology.

“School libraries are an essential component for a quality education, and this funding will help to directly support their mission,” state Rep. Jenn Ladisch Douglass (D-45, Elmhurst) said in announcing the grants. “Libraries continue to evolve, and it’s critical that they receive the resources they need to provide a modern learning experience for students.”

The grants were issued under Secretary of State Alexi Giannoulias, who also serves as state librarian. Across the state, more than $1.4 million in grants were awarded to 2,713 qualified school libraries.


Brian Allen, a 2014 Hinsdale Central graduate and center for the LA Rams, supported the just1mike foundation by wearing custom cleats for the NFL’s “My Cause My Cleats” initiative at the Rams game Dec. 3. He joined in the mission of raising awareness for sudden cardiac arrest in youth and adults.

The foundation is named after Michael Brindley, a 16-year-old who died of sudden cardiac arrest in 2016.

His brother, Robbie, and friends attended the game on behalf of the foundation. Just1mike sponsors Young Hearts for Life heart screenings at Hinsdale Central and Hinsdale South high schools, with the next one at Central slated for April 23.

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The annual Holiday Ball in December raised more than $600,000 for The Community House.

About 450 people attended the black-tie fundraising event, whose theme was “A Roaring Holiday Ball,” in support of the Willowbrook Youth Development Initiative.

Emily and Sean Maissami, Mary and Michael Osanloo, Sabrina and Aluizio Ribeiro and Nicole and Rick Schroeder served as co-chairs of the event.

The money raised will help fund child care, after-school and summer camps to improve literacy, career exploration, financial education, and trauma-informed counseling and community-based recreation through athletics, the arts and enrichment programming for kids who live in an unincorporated and under-resourced area in Willowbrook.

“At the Holiday Ball, the power of community shined brighter than ever,” said Dan Janowick, executive director of The Community House. “The love and support our guests showed through their generous donations for kids and families in Willowbrook will help build our capacity to provide life-changing services, unlock limitless potential and spark many bright futures.”

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