O'Fallon Progress

O’Fallon Nickfest this weekend

O’Fallon Nickfest

St. Nicholas Church in O’Fallon will be holding the Second Annual Nickfest on Friday, May 20 through Saturday, May 21, bringing a full two day line of family fun entertainment to O’Fallon.

The festival will take place on the church parking lot at 625 St. Nicholas Drive, O'Fallon.

After a very successful Nickfest in 2015, St. Nicholas has expanded the festival this year. The two-day festival begins at noon on Friday, May 20, and runs until 10 p.m. Continuing the fun the next day with a 5K run/walk begins at 8 a.m. on Saturday, May 21 with rides, food, games and entertainment open from noon until 10 p.m.

Featuring a complete line up of entertainment, including 15 amusement rides for kids of all ages provided by Tinsley Entertainment. Nickfest will also have 14 games for children and adults including the infamous, IDOODIT, which is a fast paced action filled game where competitors race to line up five balls in a row and yell IDOODIT.

Other favorite games and activities will include bingo, face painting, a cake wheel, basketball toss and more.

The main stage entertainment features two headliner bands: Smash Band opening at 6 p.m. on Friday night, and Whiskey Dixon starting at 6 p.m. Saturday night.

Other main stage acts feature local musical acts and dance troupes beginning at 5:30 p.m. Friday night with Beyond the Blue Men’s Singing Group.

In addition, on Friday and Saturday, children will have the opportunity to meet and greet characters each evening beginning at 5:30 p.m., including favorites like Queen Elsa and Princess Anna, Cinderella and The Fairy Godmother, Batman and Robin, Tinkerbell, Peter Pan, Captain Hook and more.

Nickfest will also feature a wide variety of food including smoked pulled pork and chicken kabobs along with fair favorites like hotdogs, hamburgers and brats, funnel cakes, fried twinkies, fried oreos, nachos and more.

There are gluten free, nut free and egg free options for those with food allergies.

New this year is a Wine Tasting Garden featuring all rated wines from around the world and a Bocce Ball tournament with a grand prize being a VIP table for Saturday night, plus free ride and food tickets. You can register at the church website, just follow the main page links.

Those interested in participating in the 5K Run/Walk can pre-register by also visiting the church website, or picking up a form at Toolen’s Running Start located in the Green Mount Crossing Shopping Center in Shiloh.

Same day registration is also available beginning at 8 a.m. The fee is $25 to run and includes a T-Shirt while supplies last.

There’s even a few games for the adults including the Big Six Wheel, Poker Stand and Pull Tabs who will have and a chance to win $1000 through the Nickfest $1000 raffle drawing.

Only 100 tickets are being sold and can be pre-purchased at the St. Nicholas Church Office, located at 625 St. Nicholas Drive in O’Fallon.

Admission is free to the event.

Advanced Ride tickets are available for purchase at a 20 percent discount through Thursday, May 19 at the St. Nicholas Church Office.

For more information visit the St. Nicholas O’Fallon Facebook page or the church websiteor call 618-632-1797.

HSHS St. E’s Barbara Leskso Memorial Scholarship deadline May 31

The application deadline for the HSHS St. E’s Barbara Leskso Memorial Scholarships is approaching. The of the HSHS St. Elizabeth’s Hospital Auxiliary Volunteers are accepting applications until May 31 for the scholarship, which is open to local nursing students.

Established by Dr. William Lesko, a dedicated family physician, who provided care to our patients at St. Elizabeth’s. To memorialize his wife Barbara, upon her passing, Dr. William Lesko donated funds to the Hospital Auxiliary to establish the Barbara Lesko Memorial Scholarship Fund. The scholarship totals $1,000 for the chosen recipient.

An application packet of information can be downloaded from the St. E’s website at http://steliz.org/giving/auxiliary-volunteers/. Requirements include being currently enrolled in the nursing program at Southwestern Illinois College with at least one year left in their degree program. Any person accepted into or currently enrolled as a full-time student in the nursing program at SWIC is eligible. Students having less than one academic year remaining until graduation are not eligible for consideration.

If the recipient drops out of school while the award is in effect, funds must be returned commensurate with the amount of the school year remaining. For example, for one half of the academic year, one half of the award must be repaid.

Winners will be chosen in June, and will be invited to attend a special awardee recognition luncheon later in the summer. For more information contact Auxillary Volunteer Services at 234-2421, extension 128.

SICAP & SIBA donates to SWIC

The Southern Illinois Construction Advancement Program (SICAP) and Southern Illinois Builders Association (SIBA), based in O’Fallon, recently donated $25,000 to the Construction Management Technology Program at Southerwestern Illinois College (SWIC). This donation will strengthen and advance educational offerings related to construction technology and integrate current scanning technology into SWIC’s Computer Applications and B.I.M. (Building Information Modeling) curriculum. B.I.M. is an intelligent 3D model-based process that equips architecture, engineering and construction professionals with the insight and tools to more efficiently plan, design, construct and manage buildings and infrastructure.Items that will be purchased with this donation include: hand held and static scanners with software and training for both pieces.

This technology is an essential communication tool for the construction industry as it evolves toward collaboration based project delivery methods.

Girl Scouts Golf Classic raises over $27,000

Girl Scouts of Southern Illinois (GSSI) held its 27 Annual Girl Scout Golf Classic at Sunset Hills Country Club on May 9. Players helped to raise $27,500 despite inclement weather.

“This was our first time holding our Girl Scout golf classic at Sunset Hills Country Club,” Jill Gobert, GSSI Director of Development, said. “What a nice course and our players had a great time. On behalf of our 13,000 girl members and 4,500 adult volunteers I would like to thank our corporate sponsors, donors, supporters and players for another successful golf classic.”

In an effort to support girl program development, girl financial assistance, and to maintain and improve Girl Scout camps, the Girl Scout Golf Classic, over the past 27 years, have raised more than $828,000.

For more information about the Girl Scout Golf Classic or to sign up to play next year or to become a sponsor, please call Jill Gobert at 618.3073605 or email her at jgobert@gsofsi.org. For a complete listing of sponsors, donors and supporters, visit our Girl Scout website at: http://www.gsofsi.org/ev_golf_tourn.html

GSSI is a not-for-profit organization supported by various United Ways throughout the region and is a Proud Partner of United Way. For more information, please call Jay Strobel at 692-0692.

Girl Scout Mission: Girl Scouting builds girls of courage, confidence and character who make the world a better place. For more information about the Girl Scout Golf Classic or to sign up to play next year or to become a sponsor, please call Jill Gobert at 618.3073605 or email her at jgobert@gsofsi.org. For a complete listing of sponsors, donors and supporters, visit our Girl Scout website at http://www.gsofsi.org/ev_golf_tourn.html.

GSSI is a not-for-profit organization supported by various United Ways throughout the region and is a Proud Partner of United Way. For more information contact Jay Strobel at 692-0692.

Exceptional Girl Scout volunteers recognized

GSSI recognized top Girl Scout volunteers, who are the heart of Girl Scouting. There are about 4,500 volunteers who play an instrumental role in providing leadership programming and opportunities for more than 13,000 girls in southern Illinois. The GSSI held its Seventh Annual meeting in early April at the Mt. Vernon, Ill., Holiday Inn. This year’s theme was Golden Jubilee, which celebrated the 100-year anniversary of the Girl Scout Gold Award. Keynote speaker 1st Lieutenant Alyssa Heimerman, who is Operations and Training Flight Commander at Travis AFB, Ca., where she serves as an Aircraft Maintenance Officer. She is a Belleville native and was a Girl Scout for many years. Earning her Gold Award in 2009, the Belleville native and longtime Girl Scout said earning her Gold Award was a really phenomenal experience as a young leader.

“Girl Scouts gave me so many positive things (like) confidence to succeed, open-mindedness and the importance of Communications in leadership,” Heimerman said.

O’Fallon-Shiloh Service Unit Team from SU 201 earned the President’s Award, which recognizes the efforts of a service-delivery team or committee whose exemplary service in support of delivering the Girl Scout Leadership Experience surpassed team goals and resulted in significant, measurable impact toward reaching the council’s overall goals.O’Fallon-Shiloh SU 201 volunteer Rebecca Huller was recognized with the Volunteer of Excellence Award, which recognizes those volunteers who have contributed outstanding service while partnering directly with girls in any pathway to implement the Girl Scout Leadership Experience through use of the National Program Portfolio or who have contributed outstanding service in support of the council’s mission delivery to girl and adult members.

With a mission to build girls of courage, confidence and character who make the world a better place, Girl Scouts has inspired over 50 million girls and women since its inception in 1912. For more information visit www.gsofsi.org.

GCS donates over $1,000 to Walk A Mile In Her Shoes

GCS Credit Union employees joined together to raise $1,075 in the month of April to benefit Call For Help Inc. by donating to the Walk A Mile In Her Shoes in Swansea.

In an ongoing effort to support the local community, GCS employees participate in Jeans Days each month. In exchange for a donation of $15 or more, employees are permitted to wear jeans on Fridays and Saturdays during the month of April.

Call For Help Inc. hosted its first, of what they hope, is an annual Walk A Mile In Her Shoes, and international fundraiser to stop rape, sexual assault and gender violence, at Schranz Park in Swansea Sun. April 16.

With over 20 walkers, approximately $5,500 was raised for Call for Help Inc.

There is an old saying, “you can’t really understand another person’s experience until you’ve walked a mile in their shoes.”

Walk A Mile In Her Shoes asks men to literally walk one mile in women’s high-heeled shoes. It’s not easy walking in these shoes, but it’s fun and it gets the community to talk about something that’s really difficult to talk about — gender relations and sexual violence.

“We would like to thank everyone who supported the Sexual Assault Victims Care Unit (April 16) at our First Annual Walk A Mile In Her Shoes event. Especially those who donned a pair of red heels who took a public stance speaking out against sexual abuse/assault in our communities,” Melissa Tutterow, of Call for Help Inc, said.

Call for Help has 24-hour assistance to victims of rape, molestation, harassment or other sexual assault; with trained advocates available to help victims at the hospital or police station. They continue assistance throught the medical and legal systems, as well as, provide victims and their families with no-cost counceling for as long as they need it.

The Sexual Assault Victims Care Unit is available round-the-clock at 618-397-0975. For more information about Call for Help Inc. visit CallForHelpInc.org. To find out more about GCS, visit myGCScu.com.

O’Fallon members of RASI honored

The Realtor Association of Southwestern Illinois (RASI) recently recognized numerous members at its annual awards luncheon in Columbia, Ill., — two from O’Fallon — Dan Tatum and Beth Ortega.

Realtor with Strano & Associates Real Estate in O’Fallon, Tatum was awarded the prestigious Life Member Award, which is the highest achievement a RASI member can obtain through membership. Having served as president of the association and president of the multiple listing service, Tatum has committed many years on numerous local and state association committees. He is a retired Scott Air Force Base Lieutenant Colonel, and the association is proud of all his accomplishments, according to Deb Treat Frazier, RASI executive.

Realtor with RE/MAX Preferred of O’Fallon, Ortega was honored with the Community Achievement Award for making an exceptional impact on the community through volunteer work. The list of Ortega’s community service contributions is impressive, according to Frazier. Serving as president of a foundation, Ortega also created and participates in its 5k each fall. She is also the co-creater and vice president of the Lifelong Music Program in the O’Fallon schools; Title sponsor in Show Choir Showdown and Metro East Marching Classic; as well as, Individual band student sponsor through scholarships. Ortega also mentors nonprofits looking to host 5k races. She’s a financial literacy advocate and teaching volunteer for local youth organizations, churches and community events, and volunteers and sponsors local Shriner Hospital events.

The list doesn’t end there. Ortega is the president of the John Wilt Foundation that was created in honor of the life of Marine Corps First Lieutenant John Nelson Wilt, who was tragically killed in a plane crash in 2002 while training for missions in preparation for Operation Iraqi Freedom. She created and hosts the Honor 5k Run each fall, raising over $10,000 a year for the United Services Organization (USO), Fisher House, O’Fallon Veterans Memorial and a renewable scholarship for an O’Fallon Township High School graduating senior. She also serves on the planning and operations board for the Marine Week St. Louis evet and works with the St. Louis Area Gold Star Mothers, Semper Fi Society and the Toys for Tots Program. She and her fellow board members provide meals, funds and services as needed for the St. Louis Fisher House at the St. Louis Veteran’s Affairs Hospital. Ortega is also a huge supporter of the O’Fallon School District 90’s music program.

For more information visit www.myRASI.com or Facebook.com/myRASI or call 277-1980 to reach the office located in Shiloh at 1124 Hartman Lane.

“80 Percent By 2018 Day”

The City of O’Fallon issued a Proclamation last month declaring April 18, 2016 as “80% by 2018” Day in the City of O’Fallon. The Proclamation looks to further raise awareness of colon cancer while encouraging everyone to take the necessary steps to eradicate this disease.

“The City of O’Fallon will be joining the national campaign to encourage businesses to promote testing to employees, and persuade our residents to do the same,” O’Fallon Mayor Gary Graham said.

The “80% by 2018” movement includes hundreds of organizations that have committed to eliminating colon cancer as a major public health problem and are working toward the shared goal of reaching 80% screened for colon cancer by 2018.

For more information about the “80 Percent By 2018” movement, please go to http://nccrt.org/tools/80-percent-by-2018/.

Tips for men and women age 50 or older, please talk to a doctor about getting tested for colon cancer, even if you have no symptoms. If you have a family history of colon cancer or polyps, you many need to get tested earlier than age 50. Discuss your family history with a doctor.

Here are a few steps to stay well and help prevent colon cancer:

▪ Get to and stay at a healthy weight by being physically active and eating a healthy diet.

▪ Limit the amount of red and processed meat you eat, including pork and lunch meats.

▪ Limit the amount of alcohol you drink to no more than two drinks per day for men and one drink per day for women.

▪ Do not smoke or use any other forms of tobacco.

To learn more about the steps you can take to stay well and help prevent colon cancer, please visit the http://www.cancer.org/ or call 1-800-227-2345.

Nickfest schedule:

Friday, May 20

▪ 5:30 p.m. Beyond the Blue Men’s Singing group

▪ 6:00PM Smash Band, a local favorite will perform the best of the 70’s, 80’s, 90’s and more

Saturday, May 21

▪ 12 p.m. St. Clare School Choir will kick of the day with a variety of musical selections

▪ 1 p.m. Dancestation State Street Dance Company will perform

▪ 3 p.m. The Newlywed Game will be played where couples of all ages will compete to win prizes

▪ 5 p.m. O’Fallon Township High School Jazz Band will perform standard jazz greats

▪ 6 p.m. Whiskey Dixon will take the stage bringing their modern southern rock style to the festival