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The Mokena Messenger 021617

18 | February 16, 2017 |

18 | February 16, 2017 | The Mokena Messenger NEWS FROM THE NEW LENOX PATRIOT New Lenox to become village-wide obstacle course The New Lenox Community Park District took the term “obstacle course” and turned it up a notch. For the past several years, the park district hosted The Amazing Race Challenge, similar to the television show “The Amazing Race” — in which teams go to different locations — but on a local scale, to complete challenges that lead to the finish line. But for this year’s event, competitors will have to take a more calculated approach. Each station will be worth different amounts of points to divert it from being a race. “It was automatically given who the winners were when people got back in the order they came in,” said NLCPD Recreation Supervisor Tracy Wrase. “The way we’re doing it now, there will be different points at different stations, so teams won’t know when they get back right away who the winner is. It’ll be a more suspenseful thing.” Now named the Road Rally Adventure, the event is set to take place from 5:30 p.m.-midnight Saturday, March 11 (Feb. 24 being the soft deadline to register). Roughly four hours will be spent finishing challenges all over the New Lenox village limits. Then, teams are to enjoy food, games, open bar, a photo slideshow of the night and an awards ceremony. The cost is $260 per team of four. All must be 21 or older. The winners will get their money back, along with a trophy. “This is something different,” she said. “It’s not your average scavenger hunt.” Reporting by James Sanchez, Editor. For more, visit FROM THE ORLAND PARK PRAIRIE Eagles boys basketball shows unity in tough loss to Lincoln-Way East Lincoln-Way East’s Sam Shafer scored 22 total points — 15 in the second half — to lead the Griffins Feb. 7 in blowing out the Eagles 56- 36 in a SouthWest Suburban Conference matchup. But the Eagles found a moment of team unity late in the game, when reserves got in, with Sandburg’s starters voraciously cheering on their teammates. “We have a good group of kids, and I enjoy coaching them,” Allen said of that team unity. “It’s good to get those kids some playing time, because they bust their butts just like everybody else for six months during the season. It’s unfortunate it had to be in this type of situation, but it’s good to get them in.” Beyond that moment, the Eagles also found something to talk about in the performance of Edmond Mila. Mila scored 15 points and had two rebounds. “Edmond played really well against them the first time, too,” Allen said. “He shot the ball well, and he’s been struggling a little. So, it was good to see.” Barlow Alleruzzo finished with eight points and five rebounds, while Jason Pygon added four assists and two steals. Chris Toth and Max Winans each scored two points. “Unfortunately, 36 points is not going to beat a good Lincoln-Way team,” Allen said. “Defensively, I didn’t think we were very good in the second half. We’ve got to keep the game in the 40s for us to have a chance. We just weren’t able to do that tonight.” Reporting by Jon DePaolis, Freelance Reporter. For more, visit FROM THE TINLEY JUNCTION The Best Way to Start Your Year IS TO ADVERTISE Your Business Here. The Mokena Messenger Tinley Park officials opt out of Cook County ordinance to raise minimum wage, offer paid sick leave The Village of Tinley Park will not be implementing Cook County’s ordinance that looks to raise minimum wage and offer paid sick leave for employees. At the Feb. 7 regular board meeting, Tinley Park officials voted unanimously to opt out of the county’s recently passed ordinance, but they plan to still uphold minimum wage laws set by the State and federal government. In October 2016, Cook County adopted the “Earned Sick Leave” Ordinance. This measure allows employees to earn an hour of paid sick time for every 40 hours worked. Employees also have the opportunity to earn up to 40 hours of paid sick leave per year. Using the county’s measure, employees are to see an increase in minimum wage to $10 by July 1 and $13 by 2019. “This particular ordinance, I see problems for our Village,” Trustee Michael Pannitto said, noting the ordinance is “too aggressive” and would drive businesses out of Tinley. Because Tinley Park shares a border with Will County, Pannitto said he was concerned that business owners would have to raise their prices to account for increased financial burden. “It would have put the business in our Village at a disadvantage,” Pannitto said. “There would be less jobs, and it would hurt everybody. If there was a sick leave [ordinance] that didn’t mandate so much, I might be for it, but this one wasn’t the right one for our community.” FROM THE LOCKPORT LEGEND Lockport Resource Center looks to expand in fifth year Cean Magosky stands next to a shelf full of trinkets at the Lockport Resource Center and Thrift Shop, phone to his ear, while Anne Magosky sits across from him, scrolling through the contact list on her phone. The pair is racking their brains to figure out how to help a Lockport resident in need of finding an affordable place to live, so that her 15-year-old daughter can stay in the Lockport Township High School district. This effort is just one example of the variety of services provided by the Lockport Resource Center. The LRC was to celebrate its fifth anniversary Tuesday, Feb. 14, and since its opening the organization has made a significant impact in the community. But Cean, the president of the LRC Board of Directors, and Anne — his wife, a board member and thrift store director — want to expand the LRC’s reach even further. “What we’re trying to do as we go into our fifth year, is break away from [being] just a thrift shop, because so many people see us as just the thrift shop,” Cean said. The LRC offers emergency relief loans for car repairs, rent and home repairs as well as a scholarship called the Transformation Scholarship. The organization also works as a referral source to the Will-Grundy Medical Clinic. Those efforts are funded through the thrift store, which is the “face” of the organization, Cean said. Reporting by Max Lapthorne, Editor. For more, visit of 100th birthday In 1917, the United States declared war on Germany in World War I, the Chicago White Sox won their second World Series championship and Eugenie Lenc was born. The third event on that list occurred on Feb. 20, 1917. Soon, the Homer Glen resident is to celebrate her 100th birthday. Lenc’s milestone was recognized during the Feb. 8 Village Board meeting, where she was given a proclamation from Mayor George Yukich and the Board of Trustees designating her birthday as Genie Lenc Day in Homer Glen. “Feb. 20, 2017 is your day,” Yukich said, wrapping one arm around Lenc. “Enjoy your special day.” Lenc uttered a simple “thank you” and received a thunderous round of applause upon receiving the proclamation. She posed for pictures with the mayor and welcomed celebratory hugs from her daughter, Mary Thompson; son-in-law, Mark; and caregiver, Theresa Przygoda. “It was a thrill; I was very excited,” Lenc said. “[My family] shares everything with me — the good and the bad.” The proclamation was organized by her longtime friend, Judy Friebel. She said she could not let Lenc’s birthday pass without her receiving proper recognition. “I knew she was turning 100,” she said. “So, I wanted to do something special for her.” Lenc’s greatest joy, she said, comes from spending time with her family. “It was a special evening, and now I can talk about it to my friends and relatives,” Lenc said. ® Contact Lora Healy 708.326.9170 ext. 31 Reporting by Brittany Kapa, Assistant Editor. For more, visit FROM THE HOMER HORIZON Homer Glen resident receives proclamation ahead Reporting by Erin Redmond, Assistant Editor. For more, visit SOUND OFF the Mokena Messenger | February 16, 2017 | 19 Social snapshot Top Web Stories From as of Monday, Feb. 13 1. Lincoln-Way Central student athletes honored in Signing Day ceremony 2. Standout Student: Maddie Slepski, Mokena Junior High School eighth-grader 3. Family Martial Arts offers new defense, exercise hybrid 4. Griffin cheerleaders fly to state final victory 5. Drawn to the fantastic: Central grad finds spot among Hollywood lights Become a member: “Congratulations St. Mary Titans 6th Grade Boys- White Basketball Team- 2nd Place in the Titan Tournament !” St. Mary Catholic School shared this photo on its Facebook page Feb. 5. Like The Mokena Messenger: “Congrats @ninko50 (New England Patriots linebacker Rob Ninkovich) on one of the greatest #Super Bowl wins of all time from @LWCFootball. @LWCFootball shared this post on Twitter page Feb. 6. Follow The Mokena Messenger: @mokenamessenger Letters to the Editor Feeling grateful for the opportunity As I look forward to the new year upon us, I feel grateful, fortunate and eager. First and foremost, I am grateful for the community of members within the Mokena Chamber of Commerce, its board of directors and its employees. I am especially grateful to our immediate past president, Dennis Buxbaum. His tireless work ethic, dedication to volunteer causes and willingness to put others’ needs ahead of his own for the past three years has left the Chamber on solid footing with a bright future. Thank you, Dennis. The Mokena Chamber of Commerce owes you a debt of gratitude. From the editor Get out of that comfort zone Tim Carroll You have to try new things. Here’s an example: it turns out oysters are great. I’d had them fried from local seafood places in the past, but my first experience with real oysters — you know, fresh and on the half shell — came not too long ago. You see, it was 1814, and we took a little trip along with Colonel Jackson down the Mighty Mississipp’. We took a little bacon, and we took a little beans, and we caught the bloody British in the town of New Orleans. Nope. Sorry, folks. Got into one of my reveries again. That’s actually Johnny Horton’s “The Battle of New Orleans.” But I was in New Orleans at the beginning of the month, and my goodness, were those oysters good. I feel fortunate for the growth of Mokena’s thriving business community. The development of new businesses within Mokena has allowed the membership to grow and let everyone know the Village of Mokena is a great location. I am eager to get to work continuing the legacy built by the past presidents and I take some time to warm up to new things, I guess, because I did not have any of the raw oysters. Instead, I went with the chargrilled oysters at two different restaurants in New Orleans, both of which were phenomenal. While I will miss the spicy, delicious, abundant cuisine of New Orleans, I am glad to find out that I can still get a good, quality oyster closer to home, like at Tribes Beer Company’s Oyster Fest (Page 10). No sugarcoating here, friends. This is definitely me taking the chance to write a little bit about my trip to New Orleans, probably my first real vacation in about eight years. But this is also a chance to write a bit about getting out of one’s comfort zone and trying new things. Oysters, even in the delicious, chargrilled construction, were pretty new to me. Most things fried taste pretty much the same. Don’t get me wrong; that mostly same taste is pretty good. But the chargrilled experience was definitely quite different. It turned out I looked hard at the rest of the menu before deciding to give them a go. The rest of the trip included some ventures out of my board members. It is a legacy of building connections But more than anything else, I am thankful. I am thankful for and very much look forward to the opportunity to serve as president of the Mokena Chamber of Commerce and to work with its members and board of directors throughout 2017. If there is any way you believe we can improve the Chamber or further aid the community, please do not hesitate to let us know. We appreciate your continued support of the Mokena Chamber of Commerce. Troy Griffiths Mokena Resident and 2017 President of the Mokena Chamber of Commerce comfort zone, as well. For instance, we spent a fair bit of time on Bourbon Street, which was just a block away from our hotel. That was kind of a change of pace for me because I tend to enjoy the more mellow, harmonious life to the hopping, chaotic scene. But I gave it a go, and just like oysters, I was rewarded for exiting my comfort zone. I am not used to all that hustle and bustle, and I don’t know that I ever really want to get fully used to it. It was probably more fun as a result of it being so foreign to my everyday life. But I really enjoyed it. I still disliked being in a crowded space, if only because I hate the feeling that I’m constantly in other people’s way. But I was able to push that thought away and embrace the unplanned — as a guide on our haunted pub crawl put it, the “usual unusual” — of New Orleans in general and the French Quarter and Bourbon Street more specifically. Venturing beyond one’s comfort zone is not always going to be a great experience. For instance, I didn’t love absinthe. It’s not that the rumors of it as a hallucinogenic are true; it’s just that it has a pronounced anise taste that is really unpleasant, in my opinion. But still, I am glad I tried it. And I plan to do myself a favor and try more new things when such opportunities arise. I think I always knew untrampled ground could be the most fertile, but my trip to New Orleans reinforced that notion and served as a reminder that it’s good to venture out every once in a while. As a rededicated proponent of trying new things, of getting out of one’s own comfort zone, I guess I’ll have to do just that next year. If I haven’t already tried them by that time, look out, Tribes. I’ll be there this time next year, (hopefully) enjoying my first raw oyster. Sound Off Policy Editorials and columns are the opinions of the author. Pieces from 22nd Century Media are the thoughts of the company as a whole. The Mokena Messenger encourages readers to write letters to Sound Off. All letters must be signed, and names and hometowns will be published. We also ask that writers include their address and phone number for verification, not publication. Letters should be limited to 400 words. The Mokena Messenger reserves the right to edit letters. Letters become property of The Mokena Messenger. Letters that are published do not reflect the thoughts and views of The Mokena Messenger. Letters can be mailed to: The Mokena Messenger, 11516 West 183rd Street, Unit SW Office Condo #3, Orland Park, Illinois, 60467. Fax letters to (708) 326-9179 or e-mail to