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CONVENTION RECAP: Holt, longtime Chicago Tribune editor, joins AP’s Lincoln League


Margaret Holt, a longtime editor at the Chicago Tribune, talks as she is inducted into the Lincoln League of Journalists by the Illinois Associated Press Media Editors on Aug. 12 in Springfield. (Photo by Erin Henkel for Illinois Press Association)


For Illinois Press Association

SPRINGFIELD – Margaret Holt was inducted into the Lincoln League of Journalists on Friday, Aug. 12, by the Illinois Associated Press Media Editors at its annual awards ceremony at the President Abraham Lincoln Hotel during the Illinois Press Association/Foundation annual convention.

Members of the Lincoln League are journalists who dedicate both their professional and personal lives to the field and to other journalists.

Holt, a former editor at the Chicago Tribune, was introduced by Mitch Pugh, the Tribune’s editor.

“At a time when people question our ethics and our accuracy and our fairness, there’s no one that I’ve ever worked with that has been as staunch and passionate a champion for getting it right and doing it right than Margaret.” Pugh said.

Holt won her first professional award through the Illinois AP for her work writing feature stories and has devoted her time as a journalist to supporting ethical and accurate reporting. Holt finished her career at the Tribune in January as standards editor. She was also the newspaper’s first female sports editor.

“This is a full circle moment for me,” Holt said. “My very first professional award was when I was a baby journalist in downstate Illinois at the Canton Daily Herald and I won first place with features in the Illinios AP contest and it was like in 1974. And so it’s a full circle thing to be recognized now at the end of my career, … it is really special.

“I’ve had the privilege of living and working in downstate and in the suburbs and in the City of Chicago so I have a special affection for Illinois and its journalism in many directions. I care very much about the work that we do.”

Holt spoke about the importance of journalism and supporting colleagues in the field.

“We’re all a part of an ecosystem and it matters and being able to use each other… as resources,” Holt said. “I cannot resist mentioning Mary Chapin Carpenter, one of my music muses, and she has this great song called “On And On It Goes” and it begins with this lyric, “River starts with a drop of rain somewhere in this world” and that’s news, that’s local news. I think sometimes there’s this whole tendency people get so caught up in the national media and things, but the work that people in this work and your colleagues are doing — it begins with you, it starts with this. If we did not have this local news and what it means to the whole news ecosystem where would democracy be? We would be in trouble as a society.

“So I know it’s been difficult for everybody but it is more important than ever that we value local news, that we care about our colleagues, and that we support their work in any way we can.”

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Contact: Sara Davis
Habitat for Humanity of McHenry County
(815) 759-9002 ext. 102



Habitat ReStores in Woodstock & McHenry
kick off Winter 2022 Donation Drive

McHENRY COUNTY — McHenry County residents can support the store that helps build homes by donating to the Habitat McHenry County ReStores Winter Donation Drive, happening now through Dec. 31!
With free and convenient pickup service, McHenry County residents can easily donate new and gently used household items, appliances, building materials, furniture, lighting fixtures, cabinets, and more!
The Habitat ReStores in Woodstock and McHenry carry gently used donations along with an excellent selection of new and like new furniture, tools, home décor, and more! Habitat ReStores are open to the general public for shopping and donation drop-offs from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday. Every purchase at a Habitat ReStore generates funds to help build, rehabilitate or repair Habitat for Humanity homes in McHenry County. Individuals and families applying to the Home Ownership program must complete a brief application, earn between 30% and 80% of the area median income based on their family size, and perform sweat equity to be considered for a home. 
“Every item donated to our ReStores helps to improve the lives of families in need of safe, affordable housing,” said Sara Davis, operations director for Habitat McHenry County, “This year alone, proceeds from our Habitat ReStores have helped us build and repair homes for more than 15 families in McHenry County.”
The Habitat ReStores rely heavily on the generosity of community donors, and all donations made through the 2022 Winter Donation Drive are tax deductible. For information about how to schedule a donation drop-off or pickup, email donations@habitatmchenry.org or call: 815-331-8153 ext. 302.
Habitat for Humanity ReStores – Woodstock, IL and McHenry, IL
Open to the public, Habitat ReStores are thrift home improvement stores and donation centers that sell building materials, appliances, furniture, and home decor at deep discounts to the communities they serve. In fiscal year 2021 alone, Habitat ReStores nationwide raised more than $76 million to help support Habitat's affordable housing mission while also diverting reusable material from landfills. All proceeds generated between both HFHMC ReStores are used to help build or improve homes in McHenry County. To shop, donate or volunteer, visit us online at www.habitatmchenry.org.



Contact: Brandon Bergersen
Valley Orchard
(815) 332-9696



Valley Orchard celebrates 45 years in the community with 'Fall 45 Fest' on October 8


CHERRY VALLEY – Valley Orchard in Cherry Valley, Illinois, is one of the oldest orchards in the community and has been a destination for cherry picking, apple picking, and apple cider donuts for 45 years in northern Illinois. Every spring, summer, and fall it has been a spot for outdoor entertainment, farm market shopping, and cider slushes. On October 8, the orchard is commemorating all the roles it has played for the community throughout its 45 years in business with a daylong anniversary celebration called “The Fall 45 Fest”. 

The event will be celebrating with the community by offering a variety of fun activities from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday, October 8. This will include attractions for guests of all ages including pumpkin carving and scarecrow building contests, children’s activities, an antique tractor show, yard games, multiple food trucks, and one free apple cider donut for every visitor. For the full schedule of events visit the Valley Orchard Facebook event. 

"I love growing apples, I have for 45 years," said Valley Orchard owner and operator Raoul Bergersen.

Bergersen went on to say how grew up with a love for farming.

"I had a friend that one day said, 'Hey, are you interested in doing an apple orchard?' I said, 'Sure, why not' and had absolutely no idea how to do it," Bergersen said when asked how it all started. "In retrospect, that was really foolish knowing what I know now," Bergersen said with a laugh. "But it was really fun."

Bergersen purchased the land in the Village of Cherry Valley in 1977. In the first year, he planted 1,800 apple trees which now have more than 5,000 trees on the 35-acre property.
With an array of apples, including their own handcrafted Johnalicious, berries, pumpkins, corn, and an abundance of rhubarb; visitors can find everything they need.

"You become friends with your customers," Bergersen said, “and we want to celebrate 45 years with them. I'm going to keep this up for as long as I possibly can, and hopefully my sons will continue something that I started 45 years ago."

Join Valley Orchard for 45 years of fun on October 8 from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. 



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