LOCAL NEWS

Local News

October 20, 2014

 

(OLNEY)  A weak cold front over Northwestern Illinois will continue to push southward today with the slight chance of light rain ending and gradual clearing to follow – cool and dry conditions will follow behind the front later today thru tomorrow and right on thru the rest of the work week ahead – in fact, at this point, it looks like a dry and cool Halloween Weekend coming up as well – stay tuned for weather updates.

 

(NEWTON)  Early voting gets underway today as registered voters who want to skip the lines on Election Day can head to their County Clerk’s office to cast their ballot – Grace Period registration is also underway for anyone who missed the registration deadline – they can also go to their respective County Clerk’s office with two forms of identification and vote at that time as well – all for the November 4th general election.

 

(OLNEY)  Unemployment in Illinois continues to fall, but is still higher than the national average – the State Department of Employment Security says the September jobless rate was 6.6%, down a tenth of a percent from the month before, in August – unemployment has fallen from 9.2% in August 2013, a year ago, however still remains above the national jobless average at 5.9% – county rates will be out next week.

 

(NEWTON)  Illinois health officials are briefing the public daily on the state’s readiness to cope with any Ebola cases that may arise – even though no cases have been reported in Illinois, health workers are stepping up their awareness – the state has activated a new hotline to answer the public’s questions about the Ebola virus – call toll-free at 800-889-3931 – or go online at www.idph.state.il.us/ebola/index.

 

(OLNEY)  A group of about a dozen landowners in neighboring Wayne County is suing the state, claiming the Governor’s Administration and the State DNR has been dragging their feet on awarding permits for horizontal hydraulic fracturing in oil production, therefore claiming the delays are unconstitutional – the suit claims oil companies are abandoning Illinois and going to other states because of the delay in issuing rules on the process – unless changed, state law requires those rules to be in place by November 15th – a local group, O.IL (Opportunity in Land), will have a town hall meeting to discuss the issue coming up tomorrow night, at the First Christian Church in Fairfield, starting at 7:00 – all are invited to attend the public meeting.

 

(NEWTON)  Regional Superintendent of Schools, Monte Newlin, is pleased to recognize the approximately 50 building administrators in Jasper, Richland, Clay, Crawford, and Lawrence County schools as we note this week as Principals’ Week – each of these dedicated professionals put in countless hours before, during, and after the school day, plus on the weekends, providing leadership and management that help our schools operate efficiently and effectively while still putting the emphasis on individual student needs – a tip of the hat to all Principals, Assistant Principals, & Deans of Students, not only this week, but throughout the year.

 

(OLNEY)  Don’t forget to go online at www.celebratemydrive.com and vote for the East Richland High School – now thru this coming Friday, October 24th, folks can vote once per day for each email address they have with hopes of ERHS winning prize money in this year’s nationwide “Celebrate My Drive” teenage driving initiative, sponsored by State Farm Insurance – in checking the leader board this morning, ERHS was sitting at number 25 on the list of top 50 small school vote-getters – so far, over 1.8 million votes have been emailed in nationwide – so spread the word to all family, friends, co-workers, fellow church members, and everyone else – just follow the instructions online at www.celebratemydrive.com.

 

(NEWTON)  The Jasper County School District will have Parent / Teacher Conferences later this week and parents and/or guardians are encouraged to make an appointment – the conferences will be held Thursday night from 5:00 to 9:00 or Friday morning from 8:00 to 11:30 – starting today, parents can call the school office to set up an appointment – it’s a great opportunity to meet with the Jasper County teachers and to talk about the development of students on a one-on-one basis – again, call the school offices today.

 

(OLNEY)  In regional news – two Jefferson County people were killed late last Friday night in a house explosion – authorities report 87 year old Byford Campbell and 87 year old Wastina Campbell were inside the Ina home when it exploded, causing the structure to leave its foundation – while autopsy results have yet to be announced, the State Fire Marshall’s Office is investigating the cause of the explosion and fire.

 

(NEWTON)  An Effingham woman is dead after a two vehicle crash last Friday afternoon on Interstate 57 in Effingham County – the State Police report 23 year old Brianne Martin was traveling behind a semi-truck when it came to a stop trying to enter the median lane crossover of the Interstate – Martin’s car was struck in the left rear passenger side and she was pronounced dead at the scene – the truck driver, 60 year old John Adams of Bluff, Illinois, was not injured, but was ticketed for driving with unsafe equipment.

 

(NEWTON)  The Newton Elementary School is again collecting children’s coats, looking for new or gently used coats for the upcoming cold winter season – folks are asked to make sure all donated coats are in new or good condition and free from any rips, tears, and/or stains – in special need this year are coats for girls, size 7 to 14, and boys size 8 to 18, plus small size coats for women and men as well – for those who don’t have a coat to donate, monetary donations will also be accepted which will then be used to purchase new coats for a child in need – all coats will be accepted at the Elementary School now thru November 14th.

 

(OLNEY)  The City of Olney’s leaf collection program is scheduled to begin today, on the 20th – the leaf pick up machines will drive thru the City collecting loose leaf piles or leaves that are bagged – the citizens of Olney are asked to place their leaves as close to the roadway as possible, but not in ditches or directly in the streets – if bagging leaves, citizens can place them near the street and notify the Olney City Hall if they’re ready for pick up – plus, the City’s Landscape Waste Facility is open for public drop off – that’s each Monday, Thursday, Friday, and Saturday, from 10:00 to 4:00, off of West Mack Avenue.

 

(NEWTON)  All area blood donors and/or first-time donors are encouraged to get out and give blood at their next opportunity, especially now when all blood types and blood platelets are in special need – here’s the list of upcoming blood drives  :  today at Crawford Memorial Hospital in Robinson from 1:00 to 5:00  :  also today at EIU’s Andrews Hall in Charleston from 1:00 to 6:00  :  tomorrow at the Wal-Mart Store in Flora from 12 noon to 4:00  :  also tomorrow at the Oblong Municipal Building from 1:00 to 6:00  :  also tomorrow at the Dieterich High School from 2:00 to 6:00  :  drives later this week in Olney, Salem, Mattoon, and Flora  :  a big “thank you” to those who turned out to give blood yesterday at St. Mary’s Parish Hall in Ste. Marie  :  to schedule a blood-giving appointment, logon at www.redcrossblood.org.

 

REMINDERS :
    The Richland County SWCD is now taking orders for its fall fish sale – grass carp orders must be placed by October 21st with other species’ orders by October 31st – call the Olney office at 618-392-7141, ext 3


    The White Squirrel Saddle Club will host a costume party and dance this Saturday night from 8:00 to 11:00 at the Olney VFW – includes live music and prizes – a $5 admission at the door – all are invited


    The Richland County Home Front will host a fundraising breakfast this Saturday morning from 6:30 to 10:30 at the Olney VFW with tickets at the door – proceeds for Christmas care packages for our area troops


    Representatives from Richland Memorial Hospital will host a pork burger cookout at the Olney IGA from 10:30 to 2:00 tomorrow with proceeds to benefit the Illinois Hospital Association and its efforts on behalf of all downstate rural hospitals, including RMH – for large orders in advance, call today at 395-6012


    Olney Central College is offering free GED classes – night classes begin tomorrow with daytime classes starting today – it’s not too late to sign up – call OCC during office hours now at 618-395-7777


    The East Orchard Christian Academy has a fundraiser at Monical’s Pizza on this Monday – fill out a fundraising form before ordering today thru tonight and a portion of your receipt will benefit EOCA

 

 

 

October 18, 2014

 

(OLNEY)  The low pressure ridge sitting over the Upper Midwest will control our weather over the next few days – while we’ll stay dry this weekend, it will be cool with sunshine mixed up with some clouds – a weak cold front will pass thru our region Sunday night into Monday with a few scattered showers included, but otherwise dry conditions are expected for the rest of the work week next week – stay tuned for updates.

 

(NEWTON)  In state news – Illinois health officials are briefing the public daily on the state’s readiness to cope with any Ebola cases that may arise – while no cases have been reported in Illinois, health workers have stepped up their awareness – the state has activated a new hotline to answer the public’s questions about the Ebola virus – call toll-free at 800-889-3931 – or go online at www.idph.state.il.us/ebola/index.

 

(OLNEY)  A group of about a dozen landowners in neighboring Wayne County is suing the state, claiming the Governor’s Administration and the State DNR has been dragging their feet on awarding permits for horizontal hydraulic fracturing in oil production, therefore claiming the delays are unconstitutional – the suit claims oil companies are abandoning Illinois and going to other states because of the delay in issuing rules on the process – unless changed, state law requires those rules to be in place by November 15th, four weeks from today – a local group, O.IL (Opportunity in Land) will have a town hall meeting to discuss the issue this coming Tuesday night, at the First Christian Church in Fairfield, starting at 7:00 – all are invited.

 

(OLNEY)  Don’t forget to go online at www.celebratemydrive.com and vote for the East Richland High School – now thru next Friday, October 24th, folks can vote once per day for each email address they have with hopes of ERHS winning prize money in this year’s nationwide “Celebrate My Drive” teenage driving initiative, sponsored by State Farm Insurance – in checking the leader board this morning, ERHS was sitting at number 25 on the list of top 50 vote-getters – so spread the word to all family, friends, co-workers, fellow church members, and everyone else – just follow the instructions online at www.celebratemydrive.com.

 

(OLNEY)  The City of Olney’s leaf collection program is scheduled to begin next Monday, the 20th – the leaf pick up machines will drive thru the City collecting loose leaf piles or leaves that are bagged – the citizens of Olney are asked to place their leaves as close to the roadway as possible, but not in ditches or directly in the streets – if bagging leaves, citizens can place them near the street and notify the Olney City Hall if they’re ready for pick up – plus, the City’s Landscape Waste Facility is open for public drop off – that’s each Monday, Thursday, Friday, and Saturday, from 10:00 to 4:00, off of West Mack Avenue.

 

(OLNEY)  The Richland County Farm Bureau Young Leaders “A Harvest of Hope” bushel of grain donation drive is today at the CGB grain facility in Olney – although donations will be accepted at any time – the funds raised thru the grain donation program will help provide food to the needy in Richland County, plus provide scholarships to Richland County high school seniors that pursue a career in the agricultural industry – check the local Farm Bureau website for details at www.richlandcountyfarmbureau.com.

 

REMINDERS :
    The Harvest Festival & Corn Maze at the St. Paul Lutheran Church, north of Dieterich, ends this weekend – that’s from 3:00 to 10:00 today thru tonight and from 3:00 to 6:00 tomorrow – it’s train rides, games, concessions, a bonfire, music, the amazing flashlight corn maze, and more – all ages invited


    The 2014 St. Joseph Smorgasbord & Bazaar is tomorrow with serving from 10:30 to 2:30 – dine-in meals for those with accessibility needs & their guests, plus carry-outs available in the multi-purpose room – the Bazaar includes bingo, a country store, and more – ticket at the gym and multi-purpose room begin at 10:00


    The next area blood drive is tomorrow morning at St. Mary’s Parish Hall in Ste. Marie from 8:00 to 12:00 noon – with all blood types and platelets very much in need, all are urged to get out and give blood


    A “dinner and dance” to benefit the Emma Kocher family is tonight at the Holy Cross Parish Center in Wendelin, starting at 5:00 – it’s a pulled pork dinner for a free will donation with carry-outs available – gun raffle, 50/50 drawings, and auction at 7:30 and a live band at 8:00 – bring your lawn chairs


    A St. Joseph Building fundraiser is coming up tonight at the Olney Knights of Columbus on Whittle Avenue, starting at 6:00 – the music lineup includes local and area talent, performing throughout the night – admission is at $10 at the door – proceeds to the St. Joseph Parish Building fundraising effort


    The Richland County Republican Central Committee will host its annual Fall Event today in the Olney City Park Community Building – the free event includes the serving of chowder, barbeque, desserts, and more from 11:30 to 1:00 – also a chance to meet the Republican candidates and elected officials


    A fundraising Clay Target Shoot is today from 8:00 to 3:00 at the Clay County Sportsman’s Club southwest of Ingraham – it’s trap field targets for shotguns only with all ages invited, plus concessions – all to benefit the Children’s Miracle Network, sponsored by Wal-Mart DC 6059


    The East Orchard Christian Academy will host a 5K Color Run/Walk this morning at Musgrove Park in Olney with registration at 7:30 – signup forms are available online at www.eocaolney.org – fee is $35

 

 

 

October 17, 2014

 

(OLNEY)  Low pressure over the Great Lakes Region will track southeastward today, pulling a cold front thru the Midwest, however dry conditions will prevail for us, although we could see a few clouds mixed up with sunshine – plus, after a brief warm-up ahead of the front, we’ll return to cool conditions this weekend and thru most all of the work week next week – stay tuned for weather updates on WVLN-WSEI-WIKK.

 

(NEWTON)  That new hotline for people who have questions about the Ebola virus is up and running – state officials say someone will be on hand 24 hours-a-day to answer questions like how to avoid getting Ebola and many more – operators will also be able to tell callers how the virus is spread and provide details on who’s at risk of getting infected the most – that new hotline number is toll-free, at 800-889-3931.

 

(OLNEY)  Governor Pat Quinn is getting a bit of presidential help as he rounds out the final weeks of his campaign – President Obama will be in Chicago this Sunday, while former President Clinton will hit the Windy City next Tuesday – Vice President Joe Biden will visit Chicago next Wednesday  :  meanwhile, GOP candidate Bruce Rauner is stumping at various stops around the state this weekend  :  registered voters are reminded the “early voting” process officially begins next Monday at statewide County Clerk’s offices.

 

(NEWTON)  Gas prices continue to fall and it may be that way for a while – not only does the demand for gas drop during the winter months, but there’s also a current price war on crude oil taking place between several countries in the Middle East – the combination is a big part of why gas prices have dropped below the $3 per gallon mark in downstate Illinois – although Richland County’s gas prices remain 10 to 15 cents per gallon higher than in many of the other regional communities in Southeastern and South Central Illinois.

 

(OLNEY)  The Richland County Board met with a special meeting last night – the Board  :  approved the tentative fiscal year 2015 budget worth $3,612,758 – with just over $3.45 million in revenue, the budget includes a $161,388 deficit – it will lay over for public viewing until the next regular meeting in November  :  approved a one year renewal of Health Insurance for all county employees with Blue Cross Blue Shield  :  approved an amendment to the County’s Mutual Aid Agreement with area counties and municipalities, noting that compensation for extra hours of mutual aid will be shared equally with those involved  :  noted a permit agreement between the Richland County Highway Department and the semi-truck haulers of hogs and livestock feed to a farm in rural Decker Township – the agreement designates a specific route of roads that must be taken to assure safe travel, while at the same time preserving the condition of roads involved  :  the Richland County Board then adjourned until its next regular monthly meeting on November 13th.

 

(OLNEY)  The East Richland School Board met last night in Olney – the Board  :  approved the tentative fiscal year 2014 tax levy as presented – the Board will hold a Truth in Taxation Hearing during the next meeting in November  :  approved and accepted the fiscal year 2014 audits for the East Richland and past West Richland Districts  :  agreed to donate a sidewalk easement thru the Elementary School property and a temporary use permit for the Middle School property to the City of Olney for its Safe Routes to Schools Project  :  approved a resolution in support of the City of Olney’s Enterprise Zone  :  agreed to reschedule the monthly November meeting to the 18th of next month  :  after a 33-minute closed session, approved the following personnel action – accepted the resignation of ERES Speech Pathologist Ryan Spicer – approved the hiring of ERES Speech Pathologists Lindsey Tomlin and Kaci Wells, part-time Food Service worker Marchele Dehner, Assistant ERHS Wrestling Coach Brad Ameter, 7th Grade Boys Basketball Coach Terry Puckett, ERHS Junior Varsity Boys Basketball Coach Andrew Kapper, ERHS Freshman Boys Basketball Coach Ian Laughlin, plus several sports volunteers for ERHS wrestling, boys basketball, and volleyball  :  also heard a district financial update from Superintendent Marilyn Holt  :  next meeting is November 18th.

 

(NEWTON)  A reminder that Jasper County residents with American Flags to display for Veteran’s Day 2014 on the Courthouse Lawn in Newton have until October 31 to bring their flags to the Newton American Legion Post #20, between the hours of 3:00 and 7:00 each afternoon and evening, Monday thru Saturday – flags can also be dropped off at the Ste. Marie Bank during regular business hours thru the end of October – those dropping off the flags should make sure their name, address, and phone number is inside each flag case – those in need of a new flag or with a flag that needs to be lettered, call Patty at 618-793-2624 by the end of October – if any questions, feel free to call the Newton American Legion Post #20 at 618-783-2622.

 

(OLNEY)  The state yesterday announced a capital investment of more than $664,000 for construction projects at IDOT facilities in Olney, Robinson, and Effingham, all part of Governor Pat Quinn’s Illinois Jobs Now construction program to create jobs and increase the state’s economy – new roofing systems will be installed on the Olney IDOT Yard Equipment Storage Building and the Robinson IDOT Yard Salt Dome – plus an addition will be built on the Effingham IDOT West Yard Equipment Storage Building – the low bids came in from Grunloh Construction in Effingham for the general construction contract, from Boos Enterprises in Effingham for plumbing, and from Pals Electric in Teutopolis for electrical work.

 

(OLNEY)  The City of Olney’s leaf collection program is scheduled to begin next Monday, the 20th – the leaf pick up machines will drive thru the City collecting loose leaf piles or leaves that are bagged – the citizens of Olney are asked to place their leaves as close to the roadway as possible, but not in ditches or directly in the streets – if bagging leaves, citizens can place them near the street and notify the Olney City Hall if they’re ready for pick up – plus, the City’s Landscape Waste Facility is open for public drop off – that’s each Monday, Thursday, Friday, and Saturday, from 10:00 to 4:00, off of West Mack Avenue.

 

(NEWTON)  The Newton Elementary School is again collecting children’s coats, looking for new or gently used coats for the upcoming cold winter season – folks are asked to make sure all donated coats are in new or good condition and free from any rips, tears, and/or stains – in special need this year are coats for girls, size 7 to 14, and boys size 8 to 18, plus small size coats for women and men as well – for those who don’t have a coat to donate, monetary donations will also be accepted which will then be used to purchase new coats for a child in need – all coats will be accepted at the Elementary School now thru November 14th.

 

(OLNEY)  Don’t forget to go online at www.celebratemydrive.com and vote for the East Richland High School – now thru next Friday, October 24th, folks can vote once per day for each email address they have with hopes of ERHS winning prize money in this year’s nationwide “Celebrate My Drive” teenage driving initiative, sponsored by State Farm Insurance – in checking the leader board this morning, ERHS was sitting at number 27 on the list of top 50 vote-getters – ERHS is currently six behind Mt. Carmel High School on the list of nationwide small schools – so spread the word to all family, friends, co-workers, fellow church members, and everyone else – just follow the instructions online at www.celebratemydrive.com.

 

(OLNEY)  The Richland County Farm Bureau Young Leaders “A Harvest of Hope” bushel of grain donation drive is tomorrow at the CGB grain facility in Olney – although donations will be accepted at any time – the funds raised thru the grain donation program will help provide food to the needy in Richland County, plus provide scholarships to Richland County high school seniors that pursue a career in the agricultural industry – check the Richland County Farm Bureau website or call the office at 618-393-4116.

 

(OLNEY)  The Olney Fire Department is teaming up with the Muscular Dystrophy Association for a “Fill the Boot” fundraiser coming up this afternoon & evening in Olney – with 100% of all the funds raised to stay here in Richland County to benefit the 18 to 20 families in the county affected by the disease, the funds raised will help with health services, flu shots, support sessions for physical, respiratory, & speech therapy, and for the yearly summer camp – the Olney Firemen will be collecting donations at the intersection of East Street and Main Street from 3:00 to 6:00 this afternoon and evening – please plan to help them help others.

 

REMINDERS :
    The 2014 St. Joseph Smorgasbord & Bazaar is this Sunday with serving from 10:30 to 2:30 featuring ham, roast beef, homemade noodles, and more – dine-in meals for those with accessibility needs & their guests, plus carry-outs available in the multi-purpose room – the Bazaar includes bingo, a cake stand, a country store, and more – ticket sales at both the school gym and the multi-purpose room begin at 10:00


    The next area blood drive is this Sunday morning at St. Mary’s Parish Hall in Ste. Marie from 8:00 to 12:00 noon – with all blood types and platelets very much in need, all are urged to get out and give blood


    A “dinner and dance” to benefit the Emma Kocher family is tomorrow night at the Holy Cross Parish Center in Wendelin, starting at 5:00 – it’s a pulled pork dinner for a free will donation with carry-outs available – gun raffle, 50/50 drawings, and auction at 7:30 and a live band at 8:00 – bring your lawn chairs


    A St. Joseph Building fundraiser is coming up tomorrow night at the Olney Knights of Columbus on Whittle Avenue, starting at 6:00 – the music lineup includes local and area talent, performing throughout the night – admission is at $10 at the door – proceeds to the St. Joseph Parish Building fundraising effort


    The Richland County Republican Central Committee will host its annual Fall Event this Saturday in the Olney City Park Community Building – the free event includes the serving of chowder, barbeque, desserts, and more from 11:30 to 1:00 – also a chance to meet the Republican candidates and elected officials


    A fundraising Clay Target Shoot is tomorrow from 8:00 to 3:00 at the Clay County Sportsman’s Club southwest of Ingraham – it’s trap field targets for shotguns only with all ages invited, plus concessions – all to benefit the Children’s Miracle Network, sponsored by Wal-Mart DC 6059 – call Jim at 618-393-5950


    The East Orchard Christian Academy will host a 5K Color Run/Walk tomorrow morning at Musgrove Park in Olney with registration at 7:30 – signup forms are available online at www.eocaolney.org, plus at Curves or any First National Bank in Olney location – fee is $35 – all are invited to take part and help out


    The Richland County Farmers Market is set up today from 11:00 to 4:00 in the Olney City Park, under the pole barns – its fresh produce and more available to the public there today – check it out


    The East Richland Elementary School 3rd grade classes will perform their music program “Summer Vacation Memories” today in the ERES dining hall – the classes of teachers Greenwood, Taylor, and Rusk perform at 10:00 am – classes of teachers Erwin and McVicker perform at 2:15 pm – all are invited

 

 

 

October 16, 2014

 

(OLNEY)  While the storm system that’s affected our weather for the past several days moves northeast, a weak high pressure will bring in some drier air for today and tomorrow – then a dry cold front moves thru tomorrow, bringing in some cooler conditions for the upcoming weekend – the extended forecast thru the mid portion of next week calls for dry and cool conditions thru next Wednesday – stay tuned for updates.

 

(NEWTON)  Governor Pat Quinn and challenger Bruce Rauner are spending big bucks in their efforts to win on November 4th – the latest campaign finance report shows that Governor Quinn put out more than $15 million between July and September, while GOP hopeful Rauner topped that by spending more than $20 million – the two Gubernatorial candidates continue their efforts to get the edge and win the election.

 

(OLNEY)  Voters are getting a chance to make a change to the state’s Constitution on November 4th – a couple of Constitutional Amendments will be on the ballot – the first will give more rights to victims of violent crimes, ensuring they get a fair shake when it comes to making a statement in court and being notified when their offender is released from jail or scheduled to appear in court – the other is a Right to Vote Amendment, ensuring people can’t be denied the right to vote based on race, religion, sex, or income.

 

(NEWTON)  The state is setting up an Ebola virus hotline – the Illinois Department of Public Health says the hotline will provide answers to some of the most asked questions about the virus, such as how is it spread and how to avoid it – at this point, no one in Illinois has been diagnosed with Ebola – the public also check the department’s website online, at www.idph.state.il.us/ebola/index.htm for continued updates.

 

(OLNEY)  The Public Building Commission of Richland County met yesterday in Olney – the Commission  :  approved bills to-date for roofing materials & architectural fees  :  approved the $74,880 bid from United Thermal of the Marion area for the asbestos abatement project for the first floor & basement of the Richland County Courthouse  :  noted that the Courthouse tuck-pointing work is continuing with crack & replacement stone work yet to be done  :  noted the Courthouse and Highway Department Building roofing project is scheduled to start soon  :  discussed the next phase of work which involves the Courthouse interior, such as heating & air conditioning, electrical upgrades, phone & data improvements, some security hardware work, and more  :  and noted a revised renovation cost estimate showing the numbers to date are within the spending parameters  :  the Commission’s next regular meeting will be Wednesday, November 19th.

 

(NOBLE)  The Noble Village Board met in regular session earlier this week – the Board  :  approved the $13,000 bid from Luttrell Backhoe Service of Xenia for sidewalk work for North Noble Avenue to East South Avenue – the 5 foot wide sidewalk will allow wheelchair access  :  reviewed the recent Water Feasibility Study, which showed an 11.6% loss – while certain water meters were recommended for future use, the study showed no need for a proficiency project or other upgrades due to a lack of savings  :  agreed to spend $300 to decorate the Village’s trailer for this year’s Christmas Parade  :  agreed to donate $50 to this year’s Senior Citizens Christmas dinner  :  noted that the Village’s leaf collection is underway – when residents have leaves ready for pickup, they should contact Village Hall  :  noted the Village’s water hydrants were recently flushed with no problems found  :  noted that the Village’s Halloween Parade, cake walk, and more will be Thursday, October 30th and Noble’s Trick or Treat Night will be Friday, October 31st, from 6:00 to 8:00  :  the Noble Village Board has its next regular meeting on Monday, October 27th.

 

(OLNEY)  The City of Olney’s Parks & Recreation Board met last night – the Board  :  approved the new Facility Assessment, Park Assessment, and Online Park Survey to be used to better determine the needs of Olney’s park & recreation system  :  noted a Public Forum set for November 12th at the Olney City Hall to hear from the citizens of Olney with their ideas for the City’s comprehensive Parks & Recreation Plan  :  also discussed walk way lighting for Musgrove Park and the sale of the downstate Senior Citizen’s Park.

 

(NEWTON)  The Embarras River Basin Agency continues to accept applications for the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program for the elderly and handicapped, plus for families with children under the age of six – those eligible should call their local ERBA Office to set up an appointment – for Jasper County, in Newton, call 618-783-3987 – for Richland County, in Olney, call 618-395-2714 – the other seven ERBA Offices are located in Lawrenceville, Robinson, Greenup, Martinsville, Paris, Charleston, and Tuscola.

 

(OLNEY)  The Richland County Farm Bureau Young Leaders “A Harvest of Hope” bushel of grain donation drive is this Saturday, October 18th, at the CGB grain facility in Olney – although donations are being accepted now thru Saturday – the funds raised thru the grain donation program will help provide food to the needy in Richland County, plus provide scholarships to Richland County high school seniors that pursue a career in the agricultural industry – check the Richland County Farm Bureau website online.

 

(OLNEY)  The Olney Fire Department is teaming up with the Muscular Dystrophy Association for a “Fill the Boot” fundraiser coming up tomorrow afternoon & evening in Olney – while firemen all over the U. S. have been collecting funds to help those afflicted by the disease for the past 60 years, this is the first time for such a fundraiser in Olney, with 100% of all the funds raised to stay here in Richland County to benefit the 18 to 20 families in the county affected by the disease – the funds raised will help with health services, flu shots, support sessions for physical, respiratory, & speech therapy, and for the yearly summer camp – the Olney Firemen will be collecting donations at the intersection of East Street and Main Street from 3:00 to 6:00 tomorrow afternoon and evening – at least $65,000 is needed each year to help those alone here in Richland County – we hope you can help out the Olney Firemen in tomorrow’s effort to help others.

 

(NEWTON)  The Illinois Emergency Management Agency is urging all Illinoisans to participate in the 4th Annual Great ShakeOut earthquake drill, set for this morning at 10:16 – the “Drop, Cover, and Hold On” drill is designed to help residents everywhere to think about what to do before, during, and after an earthquake – it’s still not too late to go online and register, logon now at www.shakeout.org/centralus.

 

(OLNEY)  All area blood donors and/or first-time donors are encouraged to get out and give blood at their next opportunity, especially now when all blood types and blood platelets are in dire need – here’s the list of upcoming blood drives  :  today at the Evangelical United Methodist Church in Mt. Carmel from 1:30 to 5:30  :  this Sunday morning at St. Mary’s Parish Hall in Ste. Marie from 8:00 to 12:00 noon  :  for more information or to schedule a blood-giving appointment, logon at www.redcrossblood.org.

 

(OLNEY)  Don’t forget to go online at www.celebratemydrive.com and vote for the East Richland High School – now thru next Friday, October 24th, folks can vote once per day for each email address they have with hopes of ERHS winning prize money in this year’s nationwide “Celebrate My Drive” teenage driving initiative, sponsored by State Farm Insurance - ERHS is currently sitting 22nd on the list so spread the word to everyone to go online and follow the voting instructions at www.celebratemydrive.com.

 

REMINDERS :
    A “dinner and dance” to benefit the Emma Kocher family is this Saturday night at the Holy Cross Parish Center in Wendelin, starting at 5:00 – its a pulled pork dinner for a free will donation with carry-outs available – gun raffle, 50/50 drawings, and auction at 7:30 and a live band at 8:00 – bring your lawn chairs


    A St. Joseph Building fundraiser is coming up this Saturday night at the Olney Knights of Columbus on Whittle Avenue, starting at 6:00 – the music lineup includes local and area talent, performing throughout the night – admission is at $10 at the door – proceeds to the St. Joseph Parish Building fundraising effort


    A fundraising Clay Target Shoot is this Saturday from 8:00 to 3:00 at the Clay County Sportsman’s Club southwest of Ingraham – it’s trap field targets for shotguns only with all ages invited, plus concessions – all to benefit the Children’s Miracle Network, sponsored by Wal-Mart DC 6059 – call Jim at 618-393-5950


    The East Orchard Christian Academy will host a 5K Color Run/Walk this Saturday morning at Musgrove Park in Olney with registration at 7:30 – signup forms are available online at www.eocaolney.org, plus at Curves or any First National Bank in Olney location – fee is $35 – all are invited to take part and help out


    The East Richland Elementary School 3rd grade classes will perform their music program “Summer Vacation Memories” tomorrow in the ERES dining hall – the classes of teachers Greenwood, Taylor, and Rusk perform at 10:00 am – classes of teachers Erwin and McVicker perform at 2:15 pm – all are invited


    The Richland County Tea Party will have it final meeting of  2014 tonight in the Olney City Park Community Building at 7:30 – discussion will include plans for the upcoming midterm election next month, plus representatives from a couple of statewide races will be on hand for more information


    There’s two other meetings tonight : the East Richland School Board in the Administrative Office board room at 7:30 : the Richland County Board with a special meeting in the County Jail meeting room at 5:30 

 

 

 

October 15, 2014

 

(OLNEY)  The slow-moving low pressure system that’s kept us wet for the past 48 hours is still stalled out over the downstate area, and it will continue to keep our sky cloudy with periodic light rain showers today thru tonight before ending – but as it eventually moves off further east, we’ll dry out tomorrow with a little sunshine, then more sunshine for Friday and a dry period thru midweek, next week – stay tuned for updates.

 

(NEWTON)  Another Governor’s debate was held last night in Chicago with Governor Pat Quinn and GOP challenger, Bruce Rauner, making their pitches to win the state’s African American votes in Illinois – while the Governor had to come clean about why only 1% of all state contracts last year went to firms owned by black people, Rauner denied claims that there aren’t any African Americans working at his investment firm – normally loyal to Democratic candidates, several black leaders have come out to endorse Rauner in 2014.

 

(OLNEY)  The oilfield production process of “hydraulic fracturing”, known as fracking, is still hanging in the balance in Illinois – a legislative panel was slated to approve the rules of use yesterday, but instead decided to push back any action until next month – once the rules are approved, oil companies will be able to begin using the process – supporters say this will create thousands of jobs, however opponents argue the process will contaminate drinking water and cause earthquakes – action is required by November 15th.

 

(NEWTON)  Nineteen farmer-leaders will be sworn in as Directors of the United States Soybean Board later this year in December after their recent appointments by U.S. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack –these volunteer farmers invest soy checkoff funds on behalf of all U.S. soybean farmers in projects to increase the value of soybean meal and oil from all over America – among the 19 farmers is the only representative from the State of Illinois, Dwain Ford, of rural Kinmundy, in nearby Marion County.

 

(OLNEY)  Starting today, the East Richland High School is again participating in the “Celebrate My Drive” initiative, a safe driving program that engages teenagers while learning how to drive in a supportive and positive way – while car crashes are the number one killer of teenagers, and while a teen’s first year on the road is the most dangerous, State Farm Insurance is using research and more in sponsoring and promoting this safe driving program for teens – locally, residents can go online and make commitments every day from each email address they have – while East Richland High School received $25,000 last year to benefit the ERHS safe driving program, the goal this year is to win one of two $100,000 prizes – so please go online and vote each day, now thru October 24th – follow the instructions online, at www.celebratemydrive.com.

 

(NEWTON)  Rainfall continued delay the statewide 2014 harvest last week – the average rainfall around the state was at just over a half inch (0.54), which is in line with normal levels for this time of the year, however some areas, such as Southeastern Illinois, had more rain than average – last week’s statewide average temperature was 54.2 degrees, nearly 2 degrees (1.8) below normal – while the statewide crop condition remains mostly good to excellent, the harvest is now further behind the 5-year average, due to the recent rains  :  farmers here in our ten county region report around 40% of the local corn and nearly 30% of the local soybeans have been harvested as of Sunday – with the muddy field conditions expected to hamper the rest of this year’s harvest, farmers are reminded to continue thinking “safety first” while harvesting.

 

(OLNEY)  There are several meetings coming up, two of which will be held tomorrow night in Olney – the East Richland School Board will have its regular monthly meeting in the Administrative Office board room, beginning at 7:30 – also tomorrow night, the Richland County Board will have a special meeting in the County Jail meeting room, starting at 5:30  :  meanwhile, there are two meetings on this Wednesday – the City of Olney’s Parks & Recreation Board will meet tonight at City Hall beginning at 6:00 – also, the Public Building Commission of Richland County will meet this afternoon at 4:00 in the County Jail meeting room  :  as always, all of these meetings are open to the public at their respective locations and times.

 

(NEWTON)  The Illinois Emergency Management Agency is urging all Illinoisans to participate in the 4th Annual Great ShakeOut earthquake drill, set to be held at 10:16 tomorrow morning – dubbed as the largest earthquake drill in the history of Illinois and the United States, the “Drop, Cover, and Hold On” drill is designed to help residents everywhere to think about what to do before, during, and after an earthquake occurs – last year, over 523,000 people in Illinois took part, along with 25 million others in 39 states and 5 different countries – it’s not too late for all individuals, businesses, schools, churches, and others to go online to register at www.shakeout.org/centralus - by doing so, participants will find expert advice about earthquake preparedness, engaging videos, and resource materials to share with family and friends.

 

(OLNEY)  All area blood donors and/or first-time donors are encouraged to get out and give blood at their next opportunity, especially now when all blood types and blood platelets are in dire need – here’s the list of upcoming blood drives  :  tomorrow at the Evangelical United Methodist Church in Mt. Carmel from 1:30 to 5:30  :  this Sunday morning at St. Mary’s Parish Hall in Ste. Marie from 8:00 to 12:00 noon  :  next Monday at Crawford Memorial Hospital in Robinson from 1:00 to 5:00  :  also next Monday at EIU’s Andrews Hall in Charleston from 1:00 to 6:00  :  next Tuesday at the Wal-Mart Store in Flora from 12 noon to 4:00  :  also next Tuesday at the Oblong Municipal Building from 1:00 to 6:00  :  also next Tuesday at the Dieterich High School from 2:00 to 6:00  :  also drives later next week in Olney, Salem, Mattoon, and Flora  :  for more details, or to schedule a blood-giving appointment, logon at www.redcrossblood.org.

 

(NEWTON)  The City of Newton has announced that the boil water order issued earlier this week for the areas along Goble Street, Hickory Drive, and White Oak Drive has been lifted – again, that boil water order for a portion of Newton due to water line repairs this past Monday, has been lifted and is no longer in effect.

 

REMINDERS :
    The 2014 St. Joseph Smorgasbord & Bazaar is this Sunday with serving from 10:30 to 2:30 featuring ham, roast beef, homemade noodles, and more – dine-in meals for those with accessibility needs & their guests, plus carry-outs available in the multi-purpose room – the Bazaar includes bingo, a cake stand, a country store, and more – ticket sales at both the school gym and the multi-purpose room begin at 10:00


    A “dinner and dance” to benefit the Emma Kocher family is this Saturday night at the Holy Cross Parish Center in Wendelin, starting at 5:00 – its a pulled pork dinner for a free will donation with carry-outs available – gun raffle, 50/50 drawings, and auction at 7:30 and a live band at 8:00 – bring your lawn chairs


    A St. Joseph Building fundraiser is coming up this Saturday night at the Olney Knights of Columbus on Whittle Avenue, starting at 6:00 – the music lineup includes local and area talent, performing throughout the night – admission is at $10 at the door – proceeds to the St. Joseph Parish Building fundraising effort


    The Richland County Republican Central Committee will host its annual Fall Event this Saturday in the Olney City Park Community Building – the free event includes the serving of chowder, barbeque, desserts, and more from 11:30 to 1:00 – also a chance to meet the Republican candidates and elected officials


    A fundraising Clay Target Shoot is this Saturday from 8:00 to 3:00 at the Clay County Sportsman’s Club southwest of Ingraham – it’s trap field targets for shotguns only with all ages invited, plus concessions – all to benefit the Children’s Miracle Network, sponsored by Wal-Mart DC 6059 – call Jim at 618-393-5950


    The East Orchard Christian Academy will host a 5K Color Run/Walk this Saturday morning at Musgrove Park in Olney with registration at 7:30 – signup forms are available online at www.eocaolney.org, plus at Curves or any First National Bank in Olney location – fee is $35 – all are invited to take part and help out


    The East Richland Elementary School 3rd grade classes will perform their music program “Summer Vacation Memories” this Friday in the ERES dining hall – the classes of teachers Greenwood, Taylor, and Rusk perform at 10:00 am – classes of teachers Erwin and McVicker perform at 2:15 pm – all are invited


    The Richland County Tea Party will have it final meeting of  2014 tomorrow night in the Olney City Park Community Building at 7:30 – discussion will include plans for the upcoming midterm election next month, plus representatives from a couple of statewide races will be on hand for more information