Clean Up at College and Uteg

A flooding problem at the intersection of College and Uteg Streets one block north of Route 14 was being addressed by the Crystal Lake City Public Works Department last Thursday. The area is obviously a low spot in the city’s drainage system.

But, on a warm day after a heavy rain, it was a great place for kids to go wading.

I remember once when my son asked me if he and the little girl riding with us could get out and play in the water.

Indulgent father that I am, I said they could.

So, on the way home from Pete’s home, I parked about where you can see the “Road Construction Ahead” warning sign.

They took their shoes off and had a ball.

I’ll have to admit that the bottom parts of their clothes got a little wet, but it was a warm summer day, so no big deal.

Thursday, when I was on my way to visit my friend and former legislative assistant Pete Castillo, I saw the Crystal Lake Public Works Department was out fixing the problem.

One of the yellow-clad workers told me that they were going to divert the water up the street to Union Street. That’s the one that runs from McHenry Avenue to Colby’s Subdivision. My shortcut to the Crystal Lake Plaza; others shortcut to Crystal Lake Central High School. Actually, the way I used to walk home when some activity kept me at high school after the bus to Lakewood left.

And, unlike the stories of walking to and from school that others my age tell, the walk to Lakewood was not uphill.

The uphill walk was in Middletown, New York, during freshman and sophomore years. There it was quicker to walk home—uphill on Highland Avenue—to 56 N. Walkhill Avenue (note the word “hill” in our street’s name, even though it was pretty flat) than to take a public bus requiring a downtown transfer.

I am reminded also of the CLCHS math teacher, Bill Falaci, who taught those of us who wanted to prepare better for college math during the summer after graduation. He lived on the southeast corner of Union and College.

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