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School Mask Policy Change | Forest Preserve Purchase | Bridal Gown Giveaway

School Mask Policy Change

Naperville School District 203 and Indian Prairie School District 204 announced yesterday they would be shifting to a mask optional policy. District 203 will put the new protocol into effect beginning February 15, with District 204 starting on February 22. Both districts cited higher than average vaccination numbers in the area as part of the reason for the decision. They also attributed it to the delay in a ruling on the appeal to the temporary restraining order on the statewide school mask mandate issued by a Sangamon County judge, as well as a lack of guidance from the state. The “masks recommended but not required” policy will apply to K-12 grade students along with faculty and staff. Anyone riding the bus must still mask up.

Residential Fire

No injuries were reported in a residential fire in the 1900 block of Lancaster Court that broke out Sunday night. The Naperville Fire Department responded to the call around 7 p.m. The fire in the two-story multifamily residence originated from the dryer, and was triggered in part by an excessive buildup of lint. Both residents were able to evacuate safely and the building was deemed habitable. Damage estimates are around $2,500.

Forest Preserve Purchase

The Forest Preserve District of Will County has purchased Hidden Oaks Nature Center and Hidden Lakes Trout Farm in Bolingbrook. The 33-acre-site was formerly owned by the Bolingbrook Park District, which brokered the purchase as a way to reduce its debt. The sale went through for $2.7 million. The forest preserve has plans to reconfigure the interior space of the 7,000 square foot Hidden Oaks Nature Center, updating the reception area, making a larger exhibit gallery and having a larger upstairs rental space. It will also build a new bait shop at Hidden Lakes Trout Farm, which will include a concessions stand. Both sites will reopen this summer.

Bridal Gown Giveaway

Bri’Zan Couture in Naperville is celebrating its 14th anniversary by giving away 14 new bridal gowns for free to the nonprofit Brides Against Breast Cancer. The bridal boutique is also giving away 14 new bridal gowns to breast cancer survivors. Those interested in receiving a free dress can submit an application sharing their story starting today on the store’s website. Submissions must be in by March 14. Last year the store did a similar giveaway for its 13th anniversary, but to frontline and essential workers.

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