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Can somebody turn off the waterworks
By Amy Mack | Daily Herald Columnist

Talk about timing: Dane Willman of Carpentersville just purchased a machine that fills sandbags.


John Starks | Staff Photographer

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Published: 6/13/2008 12:06 AM

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Anyone living near our lovely, but overflowing, waterways has likely been keeping a wary eye on the water levels in recent days.

And it's guaranteed we're all watching out for those stormy skies.

May those crazy clouds calm and may we all enjoy a wonderful weekend without any more weather worries --especially all you dads and those of you living along the river.

Bag it

Just in case our water woes worsen, Carpentersville resident Dane Willman can help those of you needing sandbags, especially in the Carpentersville, Algonquin and Dundee Township areas.

Frustrated by high fuel prices, the trucker who uses his flatbed to help out in local parades, is shifting gears to a new line of work. He just purchased a machine that automatically fills sandbags as well as bags of mulch, pea gravel, etc. He's selling filled sandbags for $2 each, empty bags for a quarter. He has more than 200,000 sandbags available and he can deliver the filled bags to you. Just call (847) 366-6555.

Need help?

I know those of you living along the river and lakes must be tired, especially after three rounds of serious flooding in 12 months. If you're needing help, let us know and we'll help put the word out. Call me at (847) 931-5725 or send an e-mail to

Flag Day

Billita Jacobsen of Carpentersville asked me to make sure you all know there will be a Flag Day ceremony at 10 a.m. Saturday at the Veterans' Garden in Carpenter Park. We're all invited.

Blast from the past

Also hoping for sunny skies this weekend, the fine folks at the McHenry County Historical Society invite us to their free 24th annual Heritage Fair when, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., you can stroll back through the past. You'll find an antiques/collectibles auction, an indoor white elephant sale, used books, vintage clothing, plants and baked goods. They'll have weaving, quilting and blacksmithing demonstrations, a 1920s vintage car exhibit and more -- not to mention the annual pie baking contest. Call (815) 923-2267 for details. The museum is on Main Street in Union.

Go Fourth!

Lots of folks among us are getting ready for some great Fourth of July festivities. Wayne Eischen of Sleepy Hollow, which is celebrating its 50th anniversary this year, asked me to let you know they'll be ready for us to join them for their outstanding fireworks show on the Fourth. Mark your calendars.

They have a full day of low-key family fun starting with a Fun Run, Walk or Stroll, the Bob Zdendek Memorial Fishing Derby, food, drink, music and games, the Bill Ritchie Parade, pony rides and a pie eating contest. More details to come.

Marching for Abe

There will also be quite a celebration in Elgin for the Fourth. Their annual parade is always one to talk about and promises this year to be bigger than ever, in part thanks to the statewide effort to celebrate the 200th anniversary of Abraham Lincoln's birthday next year. No, the former president was not born on the Fourth of July, sillies. Honest.

But Community Unit School District 300 is joining State Rep. Ruth Munson's effort to help lead up to the Feb. 12, 2009, event with a community-wide invitation to march in this parade as part of the Abe Lincoln contingent. Beards and top hats are optional. If you'd like to join in, call Allison Smith at (847) 551-8470.

I don't get it

United Airlines will soon join American Airlines in charging $15 for your first checked bag. Many airlines are already charging for a second bag. I understand the need for airlines to charge more to make up for these darned high fuel costs, but won't charging for checked bags just encourage more people to carry on their luggage? And we all know how that plays out.

Wouldn't it make more sense to charge for the carry-ons or, better still, just call it the fuel surcharge that it is?