Lake Zurich: Best Decorative Plow Award

Doreen Dzialo
Administrative Analyst and Assistant to the Public Works Director
Village of Lake Zurich, Illinois

Each year the APWA Chicago Metropolitan Chapter, in conjunction with the Municipal Fleet Managers, Illinois Section of the American Water Works Association, Illinois Society of Professional Engineers and the Illinois Department of Transportation, sponsors two fabulous days of state-of-the-art public works activities. It is billed as the "Public Works Week Conference and Trade Exposition," but many refer to it as "The Best Show in Town."

This year the Exposition will be held on May 23-24 at the Renaissance Convention Center in Schaumburg, Illinois. The event features over 60,000 square feet of equipment, technical exhibits, demonstrations and educational sessions and takes place in celebration of National Public Works Week. National Public Works Week honors the remarkable efforts of the thousands of public works professionals who serve their communities daily. This week also serves as a community awareness event where the citizens of our area see first-hand the accomplishments of our public works departments and the quality of life provided through our local public works.

The Expo's new location will accommodate the ever-growing demands for additional indoor display space. Plus, one of the highlights of the Expo—the Snow Plow and Front End Loader competition—will take place using a new and improved course layout. As part of the Exposition, Villages are invited to compete in three events: Snow Plow Roadeo, Front End Roadeo and Best Decorated Plow. The competing team for the Snow Plow Roadeo competition consists of two individuals that are currently employed by the participating government agency, and the Loader Rodeo consists of one operator who is currently employed by the participating governmental agency. Both events involve maneuvering large equipment through an obstacle course while being scored by a panel of judges. The contestants also participate in a "Knowledge Test" for the snow plow and loader categories. The tests are based on current CDL driving rules and regulations, safe equipment operation, the mechanical knowledge of the equipment and snow removal operations. The tests are given in a secured area monitored and graded by a member of the Snow Plow and Loader Committee.

In addition to the above, there is also a "Disabled Vehicle Inspection." The inspection of the disabled onsite vehicle requires each snow plow driver to locate five major defects that would prevent the vehicle from being used in their plowing operation. All areas inspected are covered in the State of Illinois Commercial Driver's License Guide and each snow plow driver has five minutes to find and record all defects. The test scores are then incorporated with the scores of the obstacle course.

  The Village of Lake Zurich's award-winning decorative plow

The third component of the Expo is "Best Decorated Plow." The Village of Lake Zurich, Public Works Department has received the award for the Best Decorated Plow for the last two years due to their innovative design and cutting-edge technology displaying our community. We have proudly displayed our prize-winning decorative plow during National Public Works Week, Village-sponsored events and community parades. In addition to the Best Decorated Plow Award, Lake Zurich has used the images of those plows on banners that also are used at public works functions.

As part of the extensive seminar program offered at the Expo, the technical and educational sessions provide enhanced courses for engineers to earn their needed Professional Development Hours (PDHs) required by the State of Illinois for professional engineering licensure. Additionally, Illinois Water Operators are able to receive Continuing Education Units (CEUs) required for license renewal, and those who attend the classes obtain their certificates onsite.

APWA encourages municipalities to take advantage of high-powered events such as the Chicago Metropolitan Chapter's Public Works Week Conference and Trade Exposition. The Expo is a great way to meet and mingle with the many talented and dedicated public works personnel.

Doreen Dzialo chairs the chapter's Exposition Advisory Committee. She can be reached at (847) 540-1696 or

Frevert visits Chicago Metro Chapter

APWA President-Elect Larry Frevert joined Chicago Metro Chapter members for their 2006 Holiday Luncheon on December 7. "Please accept my sincere appreciation for the privilege of joining you for your 2006 Holiday Luncheon at The Carlisle," Frevert wrote to chapter leaders following the luncheon. "I truly enjoyed the fellowship and learning about the great things your chapter continues to do. I am really excited about the events you are planning for your 75th Anniversary Celebration in 2008 and would very much like to be a part of that in some way. What an accomplishment and one that all members of your chapter can be proud."

During the luncheon, the winner's of the chapter's 2006 Snow Plow and Loader Competition winners were recognized. From left: APWA President-Elect Larry Frevert; Dennis Burmeister, Village of Barrington, Roadeo Committee; David Lawry, 2007 Chicago Metro Chapter President; Brian Schwichtenberg, Village of Hoffman Estates, 2nd Place Snow Plow Winner; Jeff Allen, Village of Hoffman Estates; Tim May, City of Naperville, 1st Place Snow Plow Roadeo; C. R. Jones, Village of Bolingbrook, 3rd Place Snow Plow Roadeo; Sam Mataya, Village of Bolingbrook, 3rd Place Snow Plow Roadeo; Ed Laudenslager, Roadeo Committee; Glen Andler, Roadeo Committee; Doreen Dzialo, Village of Lake Zurich, Best Decorated Plow Winner; Steve Magnusen, Snow Plow and Loader Competition Committee Chair; and Mike Brown, Village of Lake Zurich, Best Decorated Plow Winner.