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March 20 update: miscellaneous local info

As of 9:00pm on Friday, March 20

compiled by Melanie Jongsma

LANSING, Ill. (March 20, 2020) – The list below contains all new information; previously reported cancellations have been removed from the list. To view past lists, type “update” into the search field in the sidebar and click on the resulting headlines.

School District 158—still providing meals

Grab-and-go breakfast and lunch meals for District 158 students may be picked up from the Coolidge Elementary School kitchen (17845 Henry Street) between 9:00 and 11:00am. Recipients should park on Adams Street, go to Door 4, and ring the doorbell. Also available for pick-up at the Coolidge Kitchen: hard copies of home learning activities.

Families who are unable to visit Coolidge in person to access these resources should email the principal of their child’s school to discuss other options.

District 215 Board meeting—webinar only

Due to CDC and Illinois COVID-19 restrictions, this meeting is a webinar only, there will not be a meeting held at the TF Center for Academics and Technology. The public is welcome to access the webinar using the following information:

  • On PC, Mac, iOS, or Android, click
  • By telephone, call 312-626-6799 and give Meeting ID 939 153 457 when prompted

Public comment can be emailed to [email protected] by noon on Tuesday, March 24, 2020 and will be read by the board president.

Troost Coffee & Tea—closed until further notice

Owner Renae Fentress made the difficult decision to suspend business at the Ridge Road coffee shop until further notice. “The show of support has been amazing, and our regulars continue to be faithful patrons,” she shared on Facebook. “Thank you to everyone who cheered us on during the last week—we see you and we love you. We can’t wait to get back to slinging coffee and treats for you all.”

Buttermilk Pancake House—closed until further notice

“I’m closed right now. We are not open,” said Sam Yfantis, owner of the restaurant that moved into the corner building (Ridge and Calumet) where El Salto had been located in Munster. Yfantis remains hopeful that he will reopen as the situation evolves.

Lansing Loan Closet—closed until further notice

The Lansing Loan Closet is housed within Trinity Lutheran Church, which has cancelled programs and activities for the time being. This affects the Loan Closet’s availability as well.

Lansing churches—adapting

View our online list of local churches to see the variety of online services they are offering:

Assessment notice mailings and deadlines—suspended

The Cook County Assessor’s Office announced the temporary suspension of assessment notice mailings and appeal deadlines, until further notice. The office remains closed to the public. Customer service via phone is currently unavailable. Property owners with assessment, exemption, or appeal questions can visit for answers to the most frequently asked questions. Customer service support is also available by sending an email via the Contact section of the website as staff continues to serve the public remotely.

Residential property owners can continue to file homeowner, senior/senior freeze, veterans and persons with disabilities exemptions online at

Property owners who have already received assessment notices for 2020 can file appeals online at

Crucial services and operations of the Assessor’s Office continue on a remote basis. Appeals and exemptions already filed will continue to be processed. Many employees have been equipped with the resources necessary to work remotely.

Illinois Tollway implements all-electronic tolling

In an effort to mitigate the spread of the coronavirus, the Illinois Tollway will be temporarily converting to all-electronic tolling. Customers who currently use coins and currency will now be required to pass through the system and pay online. In-person customer service centers will be closed as well. However, maintenance teams, traffic operations center, and HELP Truck operations will remain operational to assist motorists and keep people safe. The Illinois Tollway requests that patrons do as much as possible to manage their accounts online at

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Melanie Jongsma
Melanie Jongsma
Melanie Jongsma grew up in Lansing, Illinois, and believes The Lansing Journal has an important role to play in building community through trustworthy information.