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When it comes to the Fourth of July parade, Mokena officials have it down pat.

“We have the parade organization down to a science, which is why it runs so smoothly,” said Cindy Gamboa, a Mokena Chamber of Commerce member who grew up in the village and has coordinated the event for the last 18 years. “We have a dedicated crew of volunteers, generous corporate sponsors and there is excellent coordination among Village officials and departments that helps pull it all together.”

Rebecca Susmarski

The Mokena Planning Commission recommended that Live Fire Gun Shop & Club come to Mokena at an Aug. 14 meeting of the commission and the Zoning Board of Appeals. 

The eight commission members present — commissioner Mark Seliga was absent — unanimously agreed to recommend that the business receive a special use permit from the Mokena Village Board of Trustees. 

The Village Board will revisit the permit request at its Sept. 15 work session. 

Rebecca Susmarski

Mokena resident David Kropp has something in common with his vibrant yellow home on Third Street: both have witnessed tumultuous periods in American history, as well as the growth of Mokena. 

Kropp grew up in the house during the Great Depression and returned in 2007, after spending decades away from Mokena. During that time, Kropp served in the military, owned a successful landscape architectural business and traveled all over the world. 

Rebecca Susmarski

The Food & Wine Fest has been a tradition in the Village of Mokena for the past 10 years, and while some changes will be made for this year’s event, the outlook for good times appear undaunted.

Dennis Buxbaum, president of the Mokena Chamber of Commerce and chairman of the Food & Wine Fest, said one of the changes this year will be the timing of certain events within the festival.

Danny Ciamprone

Frankfort Fusion Gold finished their 2014 season in Overland Park, Kansas, at the USSSA Fastpitch World Series where they took fifth place. 

Their record was 7-2-0.  

Frankfort Fusion Gold started their new season in Mokena at the PGF Regional Qualifier hosted by Blue Wave where they were named the champions. The girls have been playing together for several years and continue to progress at each level.  

Rebecca Susmarski

A proposed special use permit for a medical marijuana dispensary in Mokena was generally well received by trustees during a Village board work session meeting on Monday, Sept. 15.

Greenhouse Group LLC. is requesting the special use permit for a medical marijuana dispensary for the property at 9930 W. 190th St. in Mokena – a 5,100 square foot tenant condo space in the Mokena Crossings Business Park.

Danny Ciamprone

July 14

• Sergio Juarez, 37, of Orland Park, was arrested and charged with DUI alcohol, having no valid driver’s license, operating an uninsured motor vehicle and improper lane usage after police saw the suspect drifting in the lane at 12:22 a.m. in the 19600 block of La Grange Road in Mokena. His court date is Aug. 13 in Joliet.

Rebecca Susmarski

A 27-year-old man was arrested around 2:25 a.m. on Sunday, April 20, on numerous charges, including DUI and possession of marijuana, after police recorded him driving 98 mph on LaGrange Road.

Mamduh Hashem Beituni, of the 7200 block of West 108th Street, Worth, was also arrested on charges of reckless driving, speeding more than 40 mph over the posted limit, illegal transportation of alcohol, failure to stop and improper lane usage.

Will O'Brien

Dean Anna has played baseball for a lot of teams in his life. 

He’s played for his high school at Lincoln-Way East. He’s played for John A. Logan College and Ball State University. He even played for the Tucson Padres, the Triple-A affiliate of the San Diego Padres.

And now, the 27-year-old Mokena native can add another stop to that list — the New York Yankees.

The Mokena Blaze 12U baseball team took first place in the Midwest Region Slamfest held April 26-27 in Portage, Ind.

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