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Gresey: Reporter wins for farmland series

Great news landed on my desk this week.

Our newsroom was notified via U.S. mail that Kane County Chronicle reporter Jonathan Bilyk won an award in the 2012 Inland Press Association Newsroom Contest.

Jonathan won second place in the national contest for his three-day series “A Boom in Blossom,” which was published Feb. 29 through March 2 in the Chronicle.

The series looked at surging local farmland values.

“This year’s newsroom and digital journalism contests demonstrate again that newspapers produce the best, most impactful journalism, regardless of media platform,” said Inland Executive Director Tom Slaughter in a news release. “The judges certainly faced hard choices in determining award-winners, given the high quality of all entries.”

Those who missed Jonathan’s series can catch up with it online via e-book. The series is available on for $2.99. Just conduct a search for “Land Values in Kane County.”

• • • 

A local community figure will begin sharing his stories in the Kane County Chronicle on Thursday.

Ron Onesti of the Arcada Theatre in St. Charles will author a new column that will appear in the newspaper and online at

The column will go into detail about Ron’s interactions with celebrities that he has gotten to know over the years. His first piece will recount how he came to own the Arcada, and it will talk about Kevin Costner’s recent performance there.

“With almost 30 years in the business, you can only imagine the countless stories and behind-the-scenes encounters I have had,” Ron writes in his first column. “The stories are just so cool, I would like to share some of them with you.”

Ron’s column will regularly appear in the Chronicle’s Spark section. Those with celebrity-related questions can contact him at

• Kathy Gresey is editor of the Kane County Chronicle. Contact her at or 630-845-5368.

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