CRYSTAL LAKE – Election season is heating up with the announcement of three upcoming candidate forums leading toward Nov. 6.
The League of Women Voters of McHenry County, the Crystal Lake Jaycees, the American Association of University Women and the American Association of Women in Community Colleges are sponsoring the events, which will take place next week at McHenry County College.
All 24 seats on the County Board are up for election because of redistricting under 2010 U.S. Census data.
Eight candidates are vying for four spots in District 6.
That includes incumbents Diane Evertsen, R-Harvard; Mary McCann, R-Woodstock; and Ersel Schuster, R-Woodstock. Other candidates are Jay Kadakia, D-Huntley; Michele Aavang, R-Woodstock; Scott Summers, D-Harvard; Ryan Heuser, D-Marengo; and Larry Smith, independent-Harvard.
Two other districts have six candidates.
District 2 features incumbents Kenneth Koehler, R-Crystal Lake; Donna Kurtz, R-Crystal Lake; and James Heisler, R-Crystal Lake. James Kennedy, D-Lake in the Hills; Carolyn Schofield, R-Crystal Lake; and Jim Roden, D-Crystal Lake, round out that race.
There are three incumbents – Tina Hill, R-McHenry, and John Jung Jr., R-Woodstock and Paula Yensen, D-Lake in the Hills – running in District 5. That race also includes four newcomers – Frank Wedig, Green-Woodstock; Michael Rein, R-Woodstock, and Michael Skala, R-Huntley;
The remaining three districts feature five candidates apiece.
Incumbents Nick Provenzano, R-McHenry and Kathleen Bergan Schmidt, D-Nunda Township, join Mary McClellan, R-Holiday Hills; Joseph Gottemoller, R-Crystal Lake, and Michael Walkup, R-Crystal Lake, in the District 3 race.
In District 1, incumbents Anna May Miller, R-Cary; Robert Bless, R-Fox River Grove; and Robert Nowak, R-Cary, as well as Yvonne Barnes, R-Cary, and Nick Chirikos, D-Algonquin Township, are running.
District 4 candidates include incumbent Sandra Salgado, R-McHenry; incumbent John Hammerand, R-Wonder Lake; incumbent Sue Draffkorn, R-Wonder Lake; Bob Martens Sr., R-Spring Grove; and Mary Margaret Maule, D-Johnsburg.
The forum for Districts 1, 2 and 3 will take place at 6:30 p.m. Sept. 26. The remaining district forums will take place at 6:30 p.m. Sept. 27.
Two new faces to county voters are running for the new congressional district representing most of them.
Republican incumbent Randy Hultgren and Democratic challenger Dennis Anderson are running for the new 14th Congressional District, which under post-census redistricting will cover all of McHenry County except Algonquin Township, and arc through the collar counties.
Hultgren, of Winfield, is looking for a second term in the 14th District, which now covers Kane and seven other counties west to near the Iowa state line.
Anderson, a retired cancer research support director, lives in Gurnee.
In the 26th Senate District, Democratic challenger Amanda Howland is running against incumbent Republican Sen. Dan Duffy, R-Lake Barrington.
Of the eight General Assembly districts that include McHenry County, voters in the 52nd House and 26th Senate districts will have contested races.
Republican candidate David McSweeney, Barrington Hills, will face Independent candidate Dee Beaubien, widow of late Republican state Rep. Mark Beaubien, in the 52nd House District race. The 52nd House District under the new map covers southeastern McHenry County, including Cary and Fox River Grove, eastern parts of Algonquin, Lake in the Hills and Crystal Lake, and parts of Lake, Cook and Kane counties.
At 7 p.m. Sept. 28 will be the candidate forum for U.S. House of Representatives District 14, Illinois Senate District 26, and Illinois House District 52.
There will be a moderator and attendees will have an opportunity to ask the candidates questions during each event.
McHenry County College is at 8900 Route 14, Crystal Lake. For information, call 815-608-9987.