“When all else fails, lie” seems to be the approach of Wednesday Journal. The high school’s proposal to light the stadium weekdays Monday through Thursday until 8 or 9 p.m. on Friday nights in the fall and 6 p.m. in the spring has been part of its application since the hearings began before the ZBA, and it is the same proposal in the application they made now before the plan commission. You would have only to review the application the high school has submitted or ask the high school. Games are intended to be played on both Friday nights and weekday nights, and if a game is not being played on a week day, the lights will be on for practices. But why let the facts get in your way?

If you cared at all about journalistic accuracy, I would expect you to do your research, contact the high school, and print a correction. Both your article and editorial are inaccurate and misleading. We’ll see how far your journalistic integrity extends.

Donna D’Oro Anderson

Simply unbelievable. The decision to drop the atom bomb came quicker.

Sam Sakellaris

In response to your article about the closing arguments on the OPRF stadium lights application at the recent plan commission meeting, you quote and highlight, “In his testimony last Thursday, Weninger said the school would have nine games in the fall and six in the spring under lights. Three of the fall games, he added, would be Friday night football games. The confusion, he explained, was in the wording in the school’s application concerning night games and practices played under lights.”

Boy, did you mess that one up. Yes, nine Friday night games in the fall and six Friday night games in the spring. But the high school’s application calls for lights on every weeknight in the spring and fall. Dr. Weninger himself reviewed a sample schedule in detail at the Jan. 29 hearing. That sample schedule includes 61 nights per year, including 38 games. I urge you to contact the Village of Oak Park planning staff to clarify the terms of the high school’s proposal and the projected usage. Your readers deserve better than this misleading article, and you should correct it.

Your insulting editorial that followed only illustrated how accurate information about the stadium lights proposal has been overlooked by this newspaper. You seem to favor your own antagonistic and dismissive comments over thorough and unbiased journalism.

Ever since the Huskie Boosters first made their offer to fund the installation of stadium lights, and throughout this entire process, the organized opposition to stadium lights (APRIL) committed to participate in the high school and now village processes with accurate information relevant to the standards being considered, presented in a truthful and respectful manner. And we have succeeded. Sorry, WJ, you were probably hoping for more fuel for your diatribes.

Terry Lieber

Do the decision makers here think the issue will go away if they continue the foot-dragging long enough? There will always be student athletes coming through OPRF. Get on with it already! The indecision is ridiculous. Put the kids first already! Light the stadium!

Allen Twillie

I wish Wednesday Journal could get its facts straight and stop understating the high school’s own plans for lighting the stadium!

The high school’s own application is for lights on Monday through Friday in all fall and spring – and for 38 games, not the 15 that you report!

On Jan. 29, OPRF presented an exhibit to the plan commission of a sample schedule that included 61 nights that the lights would be on, including more than double the games (which will go later) than what you report. The conditions included in the application, and reviewed at both the Jan. 29 and Feb. 5 hearings are for lights on Monday through Thursday until 8 p.m., and Friday nights until 9 to 10:30 p.m., depending on the game.

WJ’s editorial support of the high school petition for the lights is well documented. But let’s not twist the facts so erroneously!

How could WJ continually claim that there would only be 10 to 15 night games when the high school clearly petitioned for 38? And only three weeks ago, too?

WJ also never notes that lighting the fields will not allow for one more playing opportunity for a single OPRF student, per the high school’s own testimony.

Is it really worth it to destroy a nice residential neighborhood and set a precedent in amending the zoning standards of the village and not make any more opportunities for high school athletes available, just to satisfy parents who want to see their children play “under the lights”?

WJ asks in its editorial whether the Linden Avenue neighbors noted that there was a high school in its midst and realized the implications of that before they moved here? I ask, didn’t the supporters of the lights note how little parkland there was in OP, and how close the football field was to houses, before they moved here?

There are strong arguments on both sides of the issue. WJ would do the community a real service by accurately reporting them.

Joan Winstein

I don’t know why the high school is going through all of this again. How much more time can our village government waste in pointless meetings? Why wasn’t the no from the zoning board sufficient? So now they want the planning board to say it is OK? Give it up. Play games during the day. Leave the folks who live near the high school alone. Those folks did buy a home near a football field (and I am not one of them as I live over a mile away). However, it was a field that didn’t have lights. And I bet that nearly every home in the vicinity of the field was built before the stadium was built. If you want to establish precedence of use, I believe it is in favor of the homes, not football, and especially not night football.

Christopher Goode

Editor’s note: As we clarified in last week’s Viewpoints, neighbors are questioning our accuracy about the number of night games the school is saying will be played under lights. We did not factor in as night games the practices and games for sports other than football that would be played from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. Monday through Thursday. It’s unclear whether lights would be necessary at such events, particularly during daylight-saving time.

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