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Commuter Appreciation Day slated for Friday, Aug. 1
Start of the Metra pedestrian tunnel project in downtown Lombard is just around the corner and representatives of the Village of Lombard will be meeting with commuters on Friday to help get construction information out and answer questions.
Bridget Doyle, communications coordinator for the village, said that she will join Lombard Village Manager Scott Niehaus; Bill Heniff, community development director; and Jerry Howell, assistant fire chief; as they greet commuters, hand out information and pass out doughnuts and coffee to commuters. Commuters may also sign up for e-mails to help keep them “in the know” during the construction, Doyle said.
According to Lombard Police Lt. Scott Watkins, police officers will be on hand passing out maps, as well as railroad safety information.
Doyle related that the traffic and detour route will be established by the contractor on Monday, Aug. 4. On Tuesday, Aug. 5, Michael McGuire Drive and the north side of the platform will be closed.
On Wednesday, Aug. 6, John Burns Construction will construct temporary stairs and begin tree and shrub removal. Demolition on the north side of the tracks is expected to also begin on Aug. 6.
Although handicap parking stalls will remain open, Doyle said beginning Aug. 6, Lombard’s Metra station will become largely inaccessible to handicapped users. Handicapped commuters are asked to contact David Rubino to coordinate alternate plans during the construction phase. Rubino may be contacted at 312-322-4265 or at drubino@metra.com.

Fire causes $5,000 damage to office building
 The Lombard Fire Department quickly extinguished a small fire in the break room area of a three-story office building located on the village’s south side Monday morning.
Just after 6 a.m. on Monday, July 28, the Lombard Fire Department responded with a full-still response to an activated fire alarm at an office building located at 2200 S. Main St.
According to Lombard Fire Acting Battalion Chief Doug Cail, fire companies investigated a first-floor alarm activation, finding the hallway full of smoke from floor to ceiling upon arrival.
The alarm level was upgraded to a general alarm, bringing in additional units. Companies on the scene investigated the source of the smoke, finding a small fire in a kitchen/break room area.
The fire was quickly extinguished and the building ventilated. There were no cars in the parking lot at the time of the fire and no occupants were found in the building after a thorough search of each floor. There were no injuries during the incident and the cause of the fire is under investigation.
The on-scene fire companies ensured that there was no extension of fire into the building’s structure. The building was turned over to management representatives.  Damage from the fire estimated to be less than $5,000.
Lombard firefighters received assistance from the Elmhurst, Villa Park, Oak Brook and Downers Grove fire departments, along with the York Center and Lisle-Woodridge fire protection districts.

National Night Out event returns to Lombard Common Aug. 5
by Bonnie MacKay                                       
For the fourth year, the Lombard Police Department will join police departments across the country as millions of people celebrate National Night Out.
The event will be held from 5-8 p.m. on Tuesday, Aug. 5, at Lombard Common on the east side of Paradise Bay Water Park, 437 E. St. Charles Road.
The event began in 1984 and was introduced by Matt Peskin, executive director of National Association of Town Watch (NATW).
In its inaugural year, 400 communities from 23 states participated, according to the National Night Out Web site, with 2.5 million people participating.
Now in its 31st year, more than 37 million people in all 50 states participate in the event, which asks residents across the nation to “leave a porch light on” to show their support for National Night Out.
The night is dedicated to promoting police-community partnerships and neighborhood unit.
“National Night Out is a great opportunity for Lombard police to interact with the community in a social environment,”  Lombard Police Sgt. Will Mitchell said last year.
Mitchell, who is in charge of the event again this year, outlined that this year’s event not only includes free swimming at Paradise Bay, but also a DJ, educational materials on crime and prevention issues, a Taser demonstration, and the department’s bike and K-9 units.
Officers demonstrate the use of a Taser by shooting at a target, which is made of foil.
“You can see sparks and actually see the electricity going through it,” Lombard Police Deputy Chief Tom Wirsing explained prior to last year’s event.
Target, which has participated at earlier National Night Outs in Lombard, will once again take part in the event.
According to Lombard Police Lt. Scott Watkins, there will be giveaways from Target and the police department such as coupons, T-shirts and information.
The Lombard Police Department’s command vehicle will be on display at the park during National Night Out. The command vehicle was purchased using drug seizure and DUI funds and will be open for tours during the National Night Out event.
Lombard Fire Chief Paul DiRienzo said that the fire department’s safety trailer will be displayed at the park during National Night Out. If staffing and call volume makes it possible, the chief said the department would have a fire truck or engine at the event.
However, the chief related that members of the department’s Fire Prevention Bureau will be at the event, providing safety information and giveaways.
“It’s a wonderful opportunity for communities nationwide to promote police-community partnerships, crime prevention, and neighborhood camaraderie. While the one night is certainly not an answer to crime, drugs and violence, National Night Out represents the kind of spirit, energy and determination to help make neighborhoods a safer place year round,” Peskin relates on the group’s Web site. “The night celebrates safety and crime prevention successes and works to expand and strengthen programs for the next 364 days.”
National Night Out is hosted by the Lombard Police Department in cooperation with the Lombard Fire Department, Lombard Park District, Tri-Town YMCA, Lombard Citizens Police Academy Alumni Association and others.
For more information on National Night Out, visit the official Web site at www.nationaltownwatch.org.

AAUW used book sale opens Aug. 6 at First Church
The Lombard Area AAUW opens its annual Used Book Sale on Wednesday, Aug. 6, from 5-9 p.m. at First Church of Lombard, 220 S. Main St. (corner Main and Maple).
Wednesday is “Pre-Sale Night” and timed entry tickets will be given out at 3 p.m. Admission is $10. Admission is free on Thursday and Friday, Aug. 7-8 from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. as well as on Saturday, Aug. 9, when the sale is open from 9 a.m. until noon.
This year there is special pricing—fill a bag of books—for only $10 on Friday after 5 p.m. and all Saturday morning. Also new this year, collectibles will be half price after 5 p.m. on Friday.
Over 15,000 sorted books will be for sale including “collectibles,” children’s books and “better books,” in addition to hardback and paperback fiction and non-fiction. There’s something for everyone and many a special book to be found. Most books are priced from 50 cents to $2, with better books and collectibles $5 and up.
Proceeds from this annual event fund local and national scholarships and grants. The mission of the American Association of University Women is to advance equity for women and girls through advocacy, education and research. For more information, check the Web site at lombard-il.aauw.net.