113983Katrina Markoff, the founder of Vosges Haut-Chocolate, has a remarkable story about faith, love, and chocolate. Her journey across the world led her to establish what is widely considered one of the best chocolate businesses in Chicago. Sadly, in 2019, Katrina’s journey took a wrong turn, when her husband, Jason, lost his limbs to sepsis. Then, in 2020, Katrina’s business was hit hard by the COVID-19 pandemic, and she was forced to reevaluate how to interact with customers. However, Katrina has found a way to fight through the adversity.

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APhilipRandolph 8dd6f19fc6ea4ee7b181b7afb0312a26February is National Black History month. It is an annual tradition that celebrates the achievements of Black Americans throughought the history of the United States. Though there are many places in Illinois to visit and learn more about the successes of Black Americans, one that stands out is The National A. Philip Randolph Pullman Porter Museum.

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dog 3438453 960 720Cats and dogs are very loving animals. Sometimes, they need a home to spread that love. Dog Patch helps animals find loving homes. The organization has been in Naperville for over 25 years. Despite their name, Dog Patch also takes care of cats.

Dog Patch originally started with puppies and kittens from breeders they considered reputable. However, they grew to believe the industry was not taking proper care of animals. As a result, they made the switch to taking care of rescue animals. They work with Puppy Rescue 911 in order to get pets out of poor situations and into the arms of loving families.

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COVID ROBOT pixWaukegan aerospace company Astronics Corporation is building coronavirus-killing robots, called the Xenex LightStrike, to help hospitals and health care facilities protect patients and staff from the spread of the virus.

The device is being used by seven Chicago hospitals and 700 facilities worldwide, including in Florida, California and North Carolina.

The robot uses pulsed UV rays to penetrate the virus’ cell walls and destroy the molecular structure, killing the virus. A single robot allows hospitals to disinfect 60 or more rooms, destroying bacteria that can’t be reached through typical cleaning and uses no chemicals or toxic fumes.

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cat797 carouselIllinois is not short on “cool things” made in the state. The Illinois Manufacturers’ Association named Caterpillar Inc.’s 797 foot mining truck the “Coolest Thing made in Illinois” as part of its Makers Madness Competition. The company received a trophy and banner for its honor this week.

The vote for the inaugural bracket-style event took place this spring and more than 300,000 votes were cast by everyday people. Caterpillar’s Decatur-made mining truck, which beat out 260 other products for the honor, stands at 23 feet tall on six 13-foot tires. It has top of the line class productivity and fuel efficiency to make it more environmentally friendly. The truck also has a top speed of 40 mph and can carry a 400-pound payload for a single trip. That’s enough to carry 686,000 ears of corn.

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