The Village Voice
News from the Village of Vernon Hills
July 1, 2019
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In This Issue of
the Village Voice

  • Mall Town Hall Report
  • 4th of July Events
  • County Water Report
  • Sign Up for Calls
  • Arbortheater Concerts
  • Board Meetings
  • Thank You, Partners
  • Fix the FOID
  • Village Attorney
  • Brookdale
  • Jameson's Charhouse
  • Small Wireless
  • Mosquitos
  • ZBA Spot
  • Road Rehab
  • Condolences
  • July Update Show
  • Fishing Derby
  • Summer Cel
  • No Farmers Market
  • Calendar
  • Queens

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Keep In Touch

People attending the June 18 Mall Town Hall listen to Centennial CEO Steven Levin.

Mall Town Hall Recap

About 100 people turned out for the Hawthorn Mall Town Hall/Village Special meeting on Tuesday, June 18 at the former Carson's building. Hosted by Centennial, the Dallas-based developer who owns Hawthorn Mall, the event included opportunities for people to look at concept renderings and share ideas and concerns. Centennial CEO Steven Levin addressed the group, stressing his organization's long-term view for transforming the Mall into something that will benefit the entire community.

During a follow-up question and answer session, attendees expressed support for the project, including those who responded to a social media survey conducted by an independent community group. Centennial and Village leaders were asked about incentives, TIF districts and other financing options that might be used to support the project. Mr. Levin noted that he believes a TIF district will be needed to support the work as it is currently conceptualized. That said, formal discussions have not yet taken place as the project is still in the early stage. Some attendees expressed concern that a TIF or incentives might hurt local schools or other tax-receiving bodies, mindful that Hawthorn District 73 has been struggling with space and funding issues. Centennial EVP Development & Construction Oliver Robinson countered that as it stands now, revenue (for both the company and for the community) will continue to decline unless something is done. 

Attendees gave a variety of suggestions and feedback on topics including a request to consider using energy efficient "green" processes and technology whenever possible, as well as suggestions for the types of vendors they would like to see at the Mall. 

As with all development projects in the Village, work at Hawthorn Mall requires numerous steps and checks, with many more discussions and meetings required before actual plans are drawn up. Village President Roger Byrne encouraged residents to attend meetings and stay informed through the Village's Hawthorn Mall 2.0 webpages and social media outlets. Residents are also encouraged to share their ideas and questions directly with Centennial through their direct email – The Special Meeting/Town Hall video is posted on the Village YouTube channel. 

Celebrate 4th of July
Thursday, July 4

  • 8:30 a.m. – Deerpath Drive closes
  • 9 a.m. – Parade begins
  • 6:30 p.m. – Big Fun Band at Century Park
  • 9:30 p.m. – Fireworks Show
Check the July 4th webpage for details, including the line-up chart

Remember – No Sparklers: Personal fireworks are dangerous – and illegal – in Vernon Hills. No smoke bombs, rockets or sparklers. (Sparklers burn at 1800 degrees!) Leave the fireworks to the professionals and enjoy the Vernon Hills show! (See more info at VHPD's
Fireworks Safety and the Law webpage.)

Thank you to our Volunteer Parade Committee – Cathy Byrne, Tim Grieb, John Hintz, Steve and Sharon Maslov, Bob Piecuch, Jeff Johnson and Dave Taylor. More volunteers are always welcome – contact Lisa at 847-918-3562 to learn more. And thank you to our Cultural Partners and all who support Vernon Hills' many family-friendly special events.


Congratulations to Parade Grand Marshall Jeff Steingart,
recently retired chief at Countryside Fire Protection District.


Follow Up Report...

Lake County Water Line Repair

In response to the recent water outage in sections of Vernon Hills, Lake County Public Works Director Rod Worden appeared before the Board during their June 20 meeting. He reported that all repairs have been completed, and that testing reports show that all water provided within our community was safe to consume throughout the process. You may watch Mr. Worden's presentation as part of the June 20 Village Board Meeting (Vernon Hills Village Board Meeting 6/20/19).

Repair Background and Timeline
As background, repairs were needed on a primary line bringing water from Lake Michigan through Lake County to Vernon Hills. Lake Michigan water is provided by the Central Lake County Joint Action Water Agency (CLCJAWA), while the local waterman system is managed by Lake County Public Works (LCPW). The CLCJAWA watermain repair began on June 17, and was largely completed by the end of day June 18.

New Repair Required
At approximately 5 p.m. on June 18, when LCPW maintenance technicians switched the water system off of their reserve water supply and back onto the main system, they determined that water was not drawing equally from our water towers, causing the system that regulates and balances water pressure to malfunction. The result was low water pressure or no water in areas at some of the lowest points in the system. Technicians identified the issue and repaired a malfunctioning valve causing the pressure imbalance.

Lake County Communication
Lake County Public Works Director Worden reported that an initial auto-call communication was launched by Lake County acknowledging the problem and promising follow-up information once the situation stabilized. The distribution of that message was based largely on calls from residents reporting issues and from where technicians would expect impact due to topography and distance from the malfunction. (Unlike a water main break where if is obvious who is impacted, a water system pressure issue is much less clear to pinpoint as far as impact.) Water samples were sent for evaluation, which can require up to 48 hours for results. With that in mind, Lake County initiated a second auto call advising residents in the areas expected to be impacted by this issue to boil any water for consumption until the all clear could be given. (In fact, water tests came back clean, so even at the height of the situation, the water in our system was consumable.)

Lake County Auto Call Issues
Mr. Worden reported that the County's auto-call system did not perform as anticipated. The capacity of the system was slower than expected, with calls still waiting to be delivered the following morning. Once that problem was identified, Vernon Hills initiated our own reverse 911 system to share information with residents who have signed up for emergency communications.

Lessons Learned
Lake County Public Works Director Worden noted that a great deal of planning went into preparing for this major repair. Vernon Hills Public Works Director David Brown agreed that Lake County Public Works and Central Lake County Join Action Water Agency communications were well coordinated. Some of the technical issues related to the second repair were more challenging (delivering emergency robot-calls, determining the extent of the impact, etc.), but the repairs were performed swiftly. Trustees raised concerns about follow-up communication to residents. In response, Lake County is examining and improving their emergency communication options. Mr. Worden also acknowledged the importance of providing timely data on their website and social media – noting that once the County provided a map of impacted areas, the situation was much more tolerable. Mr. Worden thanked all other agencies and staff members who supported this situation as calls poured in by the thousands to Lake County, Village staff and the VH Police Department at the height of the problem.
Please Sign Up for Emergency Calls

The Village encourages all residents and businesses to sign up for the Vernon Hills Blackboard Connect emergency notification system. This system allows the Village to contact you with urgent, time-bound information. You must sign up to receive messages – in this day of cell phones, there is no longer a robust database
of landline phone numbers that used to be provided by the phone company.

Visit and sign up or update your information today.
Rosie & the Rivets – July 11

Free Arbortheater Concerts!
Free, family-friendly and informal, Arbortheater Concerts feature a variety of music styles (and lots of opportunity for dancing). Concerts are held at the Arbortheater, 50 S. Fairway Drive just north of the Vernon Hills Athletic Complex. Concerts start at 7 p.m., and this year they are scheduled for both Wednesday and Thursday evenings. If it looks like rain, the music will usually be able to move to the Sullivan Center (635 N. Aspen Drive) – staff will work to announce on social media by 4 or 5 p.m. More information is on the Village Events/Arbortheater Concerts webpage. Remaining concerts:
Thurs., July 11 – Rosie & the Rivets
Wed., July 24 – Hillbilly Rockstarz
Thurs., August 1 – Final Say


Next Village Board Meetings:


  • Tuesday, July 2

  • Tuesday, July 16

  • Tuesday, August 13 (only one August meeting)

  • Note that there is only one board meeting scheduled for August.
  • The full Meeting Schedule is available on the Meeting Schedules webpage. 
  • Meetings begin at 7 p.m. and are held at Village Hall, 290 Evergreen Drive at Route 45 unless otherwise noted. 
  • Residents are encouraged to attend meetings, as well as view them on the Village YouTube Channel and on Cable Access. Agendas and minutes are posted online. 

A Few Items of Interest...

  • Thank You, Volunteers and Partners: During the June 20 Board Meeting, Assistant Village Manager Jon Petrillo updated the board on numerous Village-sponsored special events – including Arbortheater Concerts (remaining concerts on July 11, July 24, August 1), the Jim & Helen Heier Veterans Fishing Derby (June 23), July 4th events (July 4), Summer Celebration (July 18-21), National Night Out (August 6), Public Works Open House (August 28), and the new Fall Fest (September 28-29). Thank you to the Board and to the many volunteers who make these events possible. Special thanks to to Village Cultural Partners and supporters, including CDW, Tuson Corporation, Chase Bank, Wurth Baer Supply, Steinhafels, Advanced Disposal, Gewalt Hamilton, Jacobson & Tsou Orthodontics, Taxman Corporation, Hitz Pizza, Bears Fit, McDonalds Vernon Hills, Rainbow Play Systems and Rustoleum. (Vernon Hills Village Board Meeting 6/20/19)
  • Board Supports "Fix the FOID" Legislation: Trustees unanimously approved a resolution encouraging support for SB1966, a public defender bail program that also strengthens the Firearms Owner Identification (FOID) program in Illinois. (Vernon Hills Village Board Meeting 6/20/19)
  • Village Attorney: During the June 20 Village Board Meeting, President Roger Byrne announced his intention to engage Klein, Thorpe & Jenkins, Ltd. and partner James Ferolo to serve as corporate counsel for the Village. That ordinance is expected to be voted on at the July 2 meeting. The decision comes after interviews with four firms. Mayor Byrne has indicated he will continue to look to Attorney Keith Hunt as Special Counsel to the Village for specific situations, as needed. (Vernon Hills Village Board Meeting 6/20/19)
  • Brookdale Senior Living Addition: Brookdale representatives approached the board for approval of a small two-story addition at the back of the building. Trustees expressed concern with the architect's use of EIFS/Dryvit on the exterior. Trustees requested that Brookdale come back with a brick option for them to consider. (Vernon Hills Village Board Meeting 6/20/19)
  • New Jameson's Charhouse: Representatives from Jameson's Charhouse requested approval of their plans to renovate the former TGI Fridays restaurant on Townline Road. This will be the ninth Jameson's restaurant, with an anticipated opening in November. (Vernon Hills Village Board Meeting 6/20/19)
  • Small Wireless Facilities: The Board updated existing ordinances regulating the placement of small wireless facilities based on state and federal regulations. Verizon Wireless and AT&T both appeared before the board to request a master license allowing them to install these small units, which will be placed on light poles. (Vernon Hills Village Board Meeting 6/20/19)
  • Mosquito Spraying: Clarke performed a Village-wide mosquito spray this past weekend. Spraying is done over the evening hours, is used in conjunction with other methods such as larvicides, which are dropped into storm drains and ponds to disrupt the mosquito lifecycle. More information (including a link to request service alerts) is available on the Clarke website, as well as the Here Come the Mosquitos web article.
  • Zoning Board of Appeals Vacancy: The Zoning Board of Appeals is looking for residents willing to serve.The ZBA holds public hearings and makes recommendations to the Village Board on decisions made by the Building Commissioner by interpreting and enforcing the Village Zoning, Development and Sign Ordinances. ZBA members serve five year terms, meeting at 7 p.m. on the third Thursday of each month, as needed (generally, ZBA meets five to seven times each year). Interested residents are encouraged to send a letter of interest to Village Manager Mark Fleischhauer, Village of Vernon Hills, 290 Evergreen Drive, Vernon Hills, IL 60061. Please direct questions to Building Commissioner Mike Atkinson at 847-918-3548 or
  • Road Rehab – Finishing/Marking: The annual Road Rehab project is entering the final stage, with plans for the contractor to begin roadway marking beginning July 8 (weather permitting). Please expect delays as the contractor moves through the Village. More information is available on the weekly updates section of the Annual Road Rehabilitation Project webpage.
  • Condolences: The Board expressed condolences at the passing of Father John Finnegan, founding priest at St. Mary of Vernon, as well as at the passing of Al Mampre, WWII hero, friend and mentor to Police Chief Patrick Kreis. (Vernon Hills Village Board Meeting 6/20/19)

July Vernon Hills Update
Cable/Web Show

Learn more about your Community by tuning in to the Vernon Hills Update Cable/Web Show. The July Update includes a recap of the recent Hawthorn Mall Town Hall Special Meeting, a preview of National Night out on August 6 at Hartmann Park, some quick tips for keeping your home secure as you travel, a reminder on Summer Celebration, a tour of the new Park District Farmers Market, a preview of Little Bear Ribfest, and a look back at the 2019 Vernon Hills Pageant. Catch up on all of the Update Shows by visiting the Village YouTube channel.

2019 Jim & Helen Heier
Veterans Fishing Derby

On June 23, approximately 50 veterans from the Captain James A. Lovell Federal Health Care Center in North Chicago traveled to Big Bear Lake for the annual Veterans Fishing Derby, named in honor of former Trustee Jim Heier and his wife, who for so many years single-handedly created this important event. Veterans enjoyed a picnic lunch, gift bag and an opportunity to fish and relax in our beautiful park. Thank you to all who made this year's event possible. As Trustee Schultz mentioned during a recent board meeting, this is a hugely popular event, reaching capacity quickly (limited only by transportation available through the VA). To learn more, visit the VHPD webpage.


Summer Celebration!
July 18-21 at Century Park

Mark your calendars and make plans for loads of summer fun at the annual Vernon Hills Summer Celebration, July 18 through 21 at Century Park. Carnival rides, midway games, food vendors, children's activities, charity efforts, a refreshment tent – and lots of free live music.

This year's Saturday night headliner is the BoDeans, who will be joined by Trippin' Billies for a great show starting at 7 p.m. on July 20. Check out the entire schedule at And consider volunteering – you can sign up online. See you there!

No Farmers Market on Thursday, July 4!
Visit again on July 11!


Hawthorn Forum on Middle North Expansion – Tuesday, July 2 at 5 p.m. at the Middle North gym, 201 Hawthorn Parkway (D73 Forum)

Food Truck Tuesday – Tuesday, July 2 from 10:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. at Lakeview Fitness Center parking lot (Park District Event)

4th of July Parade
– Thursday, July 4 starting at 9 a.m. through Deerpath neighborhood. (Roads close at 8:30 a.m.) (VH July 4th)

4th of July Concert/Fireworks – Thursday, July 4 starting at 6:30 p.m. at Century Park. Free concert followed by fireworks at dusk. (VH July 4th)

Park District Farmers Market – Thursday, July 11 from 3 to 7 p.m. in Century Park (Farmers Market)

Village Arbortheater Concert
– Thursday, July 11 at 7 p.m. at the Arbortheater, 50 S. Fairway Drive – Rosie & the Rivets  (Arbortheater Concerts)

Ernie's Second Annual Truck Night – Thursday, July 11 from 6 to 9 p.m. at Ernie's 909 S. Milwaukee Avenue. Process support Jared Allen Homes for Wounded Warriors. 

Cook Library Free Movie Matinee – Friday, July 12 at 1:30 p.m. at Aspen Drive Library; Five Feet Apart (Rated PG-13) (Cook Library)

Pipe City Lacrosse Festival – July 13-14 at the Vernon Hills Athletic Complex (Clinic on July 12) (Pipe City)

Park District GO VH Evening Walk – Tuesday, July 16 at 6:30 p.m. at Grosse Pointe Park (GO VH)

Park District Flick & Float – Wednesday, July 17 starting at 7:30 p.m. at Family Aquatic Center (Flick & Float)

Park District Farmers Market – Thursday, July 18 from 3 to 7 p.m. in Century Park (Farmers Market)

Summer Celebration – July 18-21 at Century Park (Summer Celebration)

Cook Library Free Movie Matinee – Friday, July 19 at 1:30 p.m. at Aspen Drive Library; Little (Rated PG-13) (Cook Library)

Park District Family Campout – July 20-21 starting at Family Aquatic Center (Family Campout)

Free Ice Cream Day – July 21 at the Family Aquatic Center, courtesy of Bobo's (Free Ice Cream)

Motors on Milwaukee Cruise Night – Wednesday, July 24 from 6 to 9 p.m. in Hawthorn Mall Parking Lot; Weather dependent (Motors on Milwaukee)

Village Arbortheater Concert – Wednesday, July 24 at 7 p.m. at the Arbortheater, 50 S. Fairway Drive – Hillbilly Rockstarz  (Arbortheater Concerts)

Park District Farmers Market – Thursday, July 25 from 3 to 7 p.m. in Century Park (Farmers Market)

Cook Library Free Movie Matinee
– Friday, July 26 at 1:30 p.m. at Aspen Drive Library; Breakthrough (Rated PG) (Cook Library)

Park District Movie in the Park – July 26 starting at 8 p.m. in Deerpath Park (Movie)

Park District Finn's Up! Adult Night at the Aquatic Center – July 27 at 7:30 p.m. at Family Aquatic Center (Finn's Up)

Park District Farmers Market – Thursday, August 1 from 3 to 7 p.m. in Century Park (Farmers Market)

Village Arbortheater Concert
– Thursday, August 1 at 7 p.m. at the Arbortheater, 50 S. Fairway Drive – Final Say  (Arbortheater Concerts)

Summer Splash – Friday, August 2 at 5:30 p.m. (Summer Splash)

National Night Out – Tuesday, August 6 from 4 to 8 p.m. at Hartmann Park (National Night Out)

Park District Farmers Market – Thursday, August 8 from 3 to 7 p.m. in Century Park (Farmers Market)

Park District Farmers Market – Thursday, August 15 from 3 to 7 p.m. in Century Park (Farmers Market)

Little Bear Ribfest – August 16 and 17 at Century Park (Park District Event)

Park District Movie in the Park – August 23 starting at 8 p.m. in Deerpath Park (Movie)

Public Works Open House – Wednesday, August 28 from 4 to 7 p.m. (Open House)

Motors on Milwaukee Cruise Night – Wednesday, August 28 from 6 to 9 p.m. in Hawthorn Mall Parking Lot; Weather dependent (Motors on Milwaukee)

LAST Park District Farmers Market – Thursday, August 29 from 3 to 7 p.m. in Century Park (Farmers Market)

Park District GO VH Evening Walk – Thursday, August 29 at 6 p.m. at Deerpath Park (GO VH)

Chicago Cup Labor Day Soccer Showcase – August 30 through September 2 at Vernon Hills Athletic Complex (Chicago Cup)



Vernon Hills Pageant

Congratulations to our newly crowned Vernon Hills Queens – Little Miss Jasmine Wascow, Jr. Miss Victoria Burda and Miss Valerie Burda. They will serve as ambassadors for our community at special events here and around Lake County.

Congratulations also to Dahlia Daoud, Saachi Churiwala, Annabella Fisher and Linnea Gutierrez, who were named runners up, and to all who participated this year. Thank you to outgoing queens Jayla Wasco (Little Miss 2018), Haley Kalinowski (Jr. Miss 2018) and Madeline Gutierrez (Miss 2018), as well as to volunteer coordinators Cassie Horvath, Michelle Newman and Hannah Frei along with all who volunteer and support this community event.


Thank you all for reading
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