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A roaring good time at Alexian Brothers ball

Attending 71st Distinguished Service Award ceremoy were from left  Tom Jensen president Cosmopolitan Club Elgin; Honoree Nancy Schueneman Elgin;

Attending the 71st Distinguished Service Award ceremoy were, from left, Tom Jensen, president of Cosmopolitan Club of Elgin; Honoree Nancy Schueneman of Elgin; Dr. Walter Alm, award presenter; and Dr. Clare Ollayos, master of ceremonies. | Betty Brown for Sun-Times Media

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Updated: August 29, 2013 7:46PM

More than 500 guests attended the 27th annual Alexian Brothers Ball de Fleur and were treated to a roaring good time, complete with a theme of “Centuries of Charity and Charm” in classic Chicago style.

From the minute they arrived on a beautiful May 4 evening at the Palmer House in Chicago, supporters were transported to the era of the 1920s with girls in flapper dresses and jazzy music to get into the spirit. Hosted by the Alexian Brothers Foundation, the premier philanthropic gala raised $340,000 for three healthcare missions: the Alexian Brothers Hospice Residence in Elk Grove Village, which was scheduled to open in July; the Alexian Brothers Center for Mental Health in Arlington Heights; and the Alexian Brothers Housing and Health Alliance in Chicago and Waukegan.

The grand gala featured three separate auctions — live, silent and reverse — and a raffle, which together raised more than $134,000 toward the overall Alexian Brothers Foundation philanthropic goal. The robust activity on the auctions was aided by a first time electronic bidding system. Some of the big winners included an exquisite set of custom designed drop earrings (designed by Peter Martino) to Dr. Sandra Fallico.

The Alexian Brothers Hosp Residence will be unique to the area as the only faith-based hospice program with emphasis on families and social care. The Alexian Brothers Center for Mental Health has been providing holistic and compassionate services to those with emotional problems or chronic mental illness in Chicago’s northwest suburbs for more than 50 years.

Among guests spotted enjoying the evening were Chris and Gary Johns of West Dundee; Elgin residents Cook County Commissioner Tim and Schneider and wife Shelly of Elgin; Hoffman Estates Village President Bill McLeod and wife Joanne; Dr. Peter Bernhardt and Dr. Marylee Broniecki of Geneva; Greg and Diane Woytko of Elgin; and Erin Clancy of St. Charles, to name a few.

Live music was provided by the Al Sofia Orchestra.

The Alexian Brothers are a Catholic order of men who originated in the 13th Century and came to America in 1866, providing holistic health care with dignity and compassion to all those in need. The Alexian Brothers’ healing ministry and values of dignity, care of the poor, compassion, holism and partnership have been in action for more than 800 years.

Elgin Cosmopolitan Club celebrates Service Award

The Elgin County Club on Weld Road was buzzing with excitement as over 150 guests gathered to honor Nancy Schueneman of Elgin. The pledge of allegiance and introduction to the evening were given by Tom Jensen, president of the Elgin Cosmopolitan Club. The invocation was done by Susan Varava, deacon at First Presbyterian Church. Drs. Walter Alm and Clare Ollayos served as MCs for the event. Special speakers included Mary Rees Freeman, childhood friends Pam Leas and Deb Demsey and Jack and Marlene Shales. Alm presented the award.

Each guest received a small bucket filled with candy and goodies in celebration of their many acts of volunteerism in the community.

In accepting her award, Nancy had these remarks, “Through the years, I have presented my students with similar buckets while sharing a story from a book titled ‘Have You Filled Your Bucket Today,’ by Carol McCloud. This book encourages children and adults alike to fill their buckets daily through kind words and deeds shared with others. Tonight, my bucket overflows with the love expressed by all who are gathered in this room.”

The real show of the evening came when Nancy proudly introduced her family: her husband Art; and daughters Alayna, a registered nurse in Chicago and Amanda, an attorney who resides in Waukegan.

Musical tributes were given by Murna Hansemann, pianist; Rise Jones, vocalist; and parody lyrics by Karen Fox.

The Benediction “The Lord’s Prayer” was sung by Rise Jones.

Kane County Fair gives thanks to supporters

This year’s Kane County Fair in St. Charles was a success as over 75,000 took advantage of all the fun activities throughout the fairgrounds.

Larry Breon, Kane County Fair Board president, thanked fair patrons, the community, sponsors, volunteers, vendors and 4-H’ers for their supports.

The Kane County Fair is all about food. Big favorites this year were the tried and true turkey legs, corn dogs, fresh corn and elephant ears. New vendors offered healthy wraps, mac and cheese with bacon and a lobster roll sandwich that were big hits. There was more: meatballs, fried mac and cheese triangles, chicken and even pineapple — all on a stick.

Despite the heat and Mother Nature’s storms, fairgoers enjoyed a jam-packed five days. Crowd event favorites included the always popular demolition derby, truck pull, and professional championship bull riders. Bands on the Miller Lite Soundstage rocked the crowd, including Hillbilly Rockstarz, American English and 7th Heaven.

Big crowds viewed the tiger show, driving and pig races and magic shows. Kids even got to ride a camel.

The newly crowned Miss Illinois Brittany Smith of Elmhurst enjoyed talking with crowds and teens were able to enjoy a performance by a new You Tube sensation, the talented Cimorelli Sisters. Over 350 fans lines up for autographs.

The first place winners of the 30th Annual Kane County Fair Talent Contest were: Junior Division – Daniel Souvigny of Hampshire, who performed a piano solo; and Senior Division — Emily Schmid of Geneva, who performed a dance solo.

They will represent Kane County and compete in the Illinois Association of Agricultural Fair talent contest in January in Springfield.

Places To Be Scene

The Donor Club of Elgin will host its annual book review with popular guest reviewer Barbara Rinella. President Merrie Derderian suggests early calls for reservations because of limited seating. The event will be held Thursday, Sept. 26, at the Elgin Country Club. For more information, call Mary Aydt at 847-742-6978.

It’s a must attend. The Elgin Symphony Orchestra announces that its new music director, Andrew Grames, will conduct the symphony in its season opening night performance on Saturday, Oct. 5. Grames will make his debut as director for the powerful Mahler Titan Symphony No II. For ticket information, call 847-888-4000.

Elgin YWCA invites you to attend the annual “Queen for a Day — A Victorian Tea.” This year’s theme is Once Upon a Princess. It will take place from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 24. This special event will be held at the Elgin Country Club, 2575 Weld Road. The afternoon includes tea, music, merriment and an opportunity to be chosen a lady-in-waiting, princess or queen for a Day. For more information, call the YW at 847-742-7930.

Art & Soul On The Fox For All will be held Aug. 3 and 4 at the historic DuPage Court area, located in downtown Elgin. For more information, call Sandy Kaptain at 847-741-7375.

Janis Theater Company presents the 6th Walkabout Friday, Saturday and Sunday, Aug. 2-4. Day tours on Saturday and Sunday begin at 2 p.m. with tours every 15 minutes until 3 p.m. Friday and Saturday, tours will also begin at 7 p.m. with tours every 15 minutes until 8 p.m. Starting location is the Elgin Public House, 219 E. Chicago St. Complimentary malts are provided by Al’s Café. For more information, call 847-841-1713.

The 67th annual Cosmopolitan Golf Outing will take place Thursday, Aug. 1. Check-in begins at 10:30 a.m. at Bartlett Hills Golf Club, 800 W. Oneida Avenue, Bartlett. It’s a fun-filled day with 18 holes of golf, golf cart, coffee and donuts, box lunch, followed by a wonderful banquet/dinner. For more information, call Paul Sampson at 630-669-4491.

Women of Grace & Dignity will hold its Community Recognition Awards Dinner. You’re invited to nominate a woman who displays excellence in the workplace by filling out a nomination form. Forms are available online. Enter this contest which honors women who display attributes of excellence and win $100. It will be held Thursday, Sept. 12, at the Elgin Holiday Inn. Check the organization’s website, www.womenofgrace&, for details.

The Elgin United Civic Association will hold a steak fry at 5 p.m. Monday, July 29 at Eagles Lodge No. 1047, 325 Raymond Road in Gilberts. For information, call Julie at 815-715-0704.


We congratulate Lillian Pagni of Hampshire. The Altrusa International Club of Elgin, Inc., a service club comprised of area active and retired professional women, recognized her with the 64th annual Woman of the Year 2013 Award at a recent awards dinner held at the Villa Olivia Country Club in Bartlett. Past Women of the Year recipients attended the celebration, including Pat Laird (1989), Mary Camacho (1984), Carole Peto (2012), Marge Haefliger (2004), Nancy Schueneman (2002), Deirdre Higgins White (2011) and Murna Hansemann (1996). For more information about the Altrusa Club of Elgin, call 847-791-4764.

Special thanks from the Brown family

As many of you know, my husband Floyd had a stroke following his heart stint surgery. He is in recovery, having rehab three times daily. Our family thanks our many friends and my readers for the cards, letters, calls and prayers. We truly appreciate your interest in his condition. He is getting better each day. We sincerely thank you all.

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