Byline: Rachel Baruch Yackley
Imagine being able to get virtually any type of local information with just the touch of a button. Are you looking for something fun to do, a group to join, activities for your kids or even information on local commerce?
If you have Internet access, then all of this information really is at your fingertips. Through the multitude of local Web sites, you can find information on all sorts of things, including local politics, events, programs for babies through senior citizens, information on schools, businesses, clubs and more.
One site worth visiting again and again is the City of St. Charles site, www.ci.st-charles.il.us.
With a directory of local government, ways to get involved, even careers, this site has plenty to offer. Especially helpful is the community calendar, where you can easily check out many of the goings-on in and around town.
Take the December calendar page, for example: Pick the date or event you want to check out, click on that date, and a handy listing of all you need to know pops right up. Whether you want to find out what time the Christmas at the Barn show is open, or when city offices are closed over the holidays, it's all here.
A remarkably long list of local clubs and organizations can be viewed from the City of St. Charles Web site. Social, medical, political, self-help and just about every group in between is here, such as Amnesty International USA, Local 584; Fox Valley Bicycle and Ski Club; Geneva-St. Charles League of Women Voters and the St. Charles Jaycees. Many of the listings include contact names and numbers or e-mail addresses.
Another handy site to find local information is the St. Charles Convention and Visitors Bureau Web site at www.visitstcharles.com.
Are you hungry for a new place to dine, want to see what shops are in town or learn about upcoming events? A list of upcoming events for each month is also found here, and a Web link for additional information is provided with most listings.
If you prefer to read about events in hard copy, you can request a free visitors guide at this site. You may want to get one for friends or family coming into town or just for someone you know who doesn't have Internet access.
Residents new to the area might want to check out the St. Charles Chamber of Commerce Web site at www.stcharleschamber.com, where pages of links for businesses and other information all about St. Charles can be found.
Residents of all ages, interests and abilities can learn about programs and more at the St. Charles Park District's Web site, www.st-charlesparks.org. In addition to program information, this site also lists special events, employment and volunteer opportunities through the park district, as well as information on parks and trails.
Did you know that the park district has been able to protect and preserve more than 1,400 acres of land in St. Charles? Check out this site, and find out how you can benefit from this wonderful resource.
Are there teenagers in your house? Then you may want to open the web page for the STC Underground at www.stcunderground.com. This teen center is a coordinated effort between the St. Charles Park District, the City of St. Charles and the St. Charles school district. (At the moment, this Web site is "under construction," but keep checking back for updated information.)
Teens can also check out what's happening around town by going to the Fox Valley TEEN Online Community at www.stevevance.net.
This new site has listings and information on what's up with the local scene, as well as ways to connect to other teens. Covering towns from Oswego all the way up to Elgin, this Web site provides the lowdown on bands, shows and events, as well as the opportunity for teens to share their ideas and thoughts with other teens through essays, poetry and reviews of all types. …