LOCAL NEWS

Local News

February 25, 2017

 

(OLNEY)  As a cold front moved thru our downstate area yesterday afternoon, we’re back to some winter weather conditions today – while we’ll return to some sunshine on this Saturday, our temperatures will rebound back into the 50’s by Monday and 60’s next Tuesday, although our next chance of rain will move thru with the next weather system Monday night thru Wednesday – stay tuned for continued updates.

 

(NEWTON)  In state news – the Illinois Department of Revenue & Internal Revenue Service are reminding taxpayers that filing returns electronically and requesting direct deposit into a checking or savings account is still the fastest and most secure way to receive a refund – in fact, some returns are coming back in less than two weeks in many cases – for the latest up to date information, tax forms, schedules, and instructions on filing your taxes, check either of two websites online, at  www.tax.illinois.gov  or at  www.irs.gov.

 

(OLNEY)  Here’s some reminders for those outdoors  :  reservations can now be made for campsites and shelters for many of the Illinois State Parks and other IDNR sites for 2017 – to do so, simply go online at  www.reserveamerica.com  :  folks can go online now and register for upcoming Hunter Safety Education and Boating Safety Education courses thru the IDNR – spring classes are now being scheduled – check the IDNR website for class dates, times, and locations  :  and all Illinois fishing, hunting, and sportsman’s combination licenses for 2017 are now available from IDNR Direct license and permit vendors or online  :  for all things outdoors in Illinois, check it all out on the State DNR’s website, at  www.dnr.illinois.gov.

 

(OLNEY/NEWTON)  The Red Cross has an emergency appeal in place, asking all eligible and/or first-time donors to get out and give blood at their next opportunity – upcoming blood drives include   :  today at the Charleston Public Library from 12:00 to 4:00  :  tomorrow morning at St. John’s Lutheran Church in Effingham from 8:00 to 12:00  :  next Monday at the Shelbyville High School from 9:00 to 2:00  :  Monday at the St. John’s Lutheran Church in Mattoon from 2:00 to 6:00  :  all blood types and platelets are needed.

 

REMINDERS  :

    A reminder from the City of Olney – city crews will begin mowing and spring maintenance at Haven Hill Cemetery, Maple Dale Cemetery, and Haven Hill Memorial Garden during the week of March 13th – those who’d like to keep any ground decorations should have them picked up by Sunday, March 12th

    Wabash Valley College in Mt. Carmel is hosting the first of two Quilt Exhibits running for nearly two more weeks, now thru Friday, March 10th – it’s all to showcase the talent and art of the Wabash Valley community – that’s at the Brubeck Arts Center Gallery on the Wabash Valley College campus

    The St. Thomas Annual Soup Supper is tomorrow in the Parish Center in Newton with serving from 10:00 to 6:00 – there will be chili or vegetable soup, sandwiches, desserts, and drinks with carry-outs available until 6:00 – plus plenty of games, crafts, a basket stand, a quilt raffle, baked goodies, and more – the Supper’s “big raffle” drawing with lots of cash and prizes will begin at 5:00 – all are invited to attend

    The Greenup Volunteer Fire Department Ladies Auxiliary will host its 1st Annual Chili Supper & Silent Auction tonight with serving from 4:00 to 8:00 at the Greenup Municipal Building Auditorium – admission is by donation at the door – proceeds to help purchase firefighting gear and other equipment

    Olney City Council candidate Bryce Fehrenbacher has a fundraising pancake breakfast this morning in the Olney City Park Community Building with serving from 8:00 to 10:30 – donations accepted

    The Historical Sailor Springs Foundation is serving breakfast this morning from 8:00 to 10:00 at the Foundation Building – $6 tickets at the door with carry-outs available – all are invited

    It’s the annual “pancake & sausage” breakfast this morning at the Noble Lion’s Club Building with serving from 7:00 until 12:00 noon – tickets on sale at the door with carry-outs available – all invited

 

 

February 24, 2017

 

(OLNEY)  An approaching cold front will roll thru our downstate region later this afternoon – ahead of it, we’ll have some rain chances, a thunderstorm is possible, but after the wind switches from the west and the rain stops, that colder air will give us a 40 degree temperature drop by tomorrow morning – then a quick warm up Sunday and into the first part of next week, plus dry tomorrow thru Monday – listen for updates.

 

(NEWTON)  In state news – House Speaker Michael Madigan is forming a panel to pick up where a recent commission left off in revamping the state’s outdated public school funding formula – Madigan says the group will address questions left unanswered by a funding reform commission convened by the Governor, which concluded earlier this month that Illinois must fund its schools more equally – but Madigan says the commission failed to acknowledge what he called, the current formula’s overreliance on property taxes.

 

(OLNEY)  Illinois officials have discovered a devastating fungus that can kill popular landscape shrubbery – the State Department of Agriculture says the Boxwood blight was first found in Illinois near Chicago last year, but now has been discovered at a landscape company near Breese – it’s believed that the fungus was in plants that came to Illinois from another state – the Agriculture Department will have a public meeting next month in March to begin the regulatory process of having the Boxwood blight declared a nuisance.

 

(NEWTON)  Tens of thousands of Illinois government workers have voted in favor of authorizing a strike if contract talks do not progress – the state council of the American Federation of State, County, and Municipal Employees reported that 81% of union members said “yes” to a possible strike – AFSCME’s 38,000 members have been unable to get a new contract agreement with the Governor since the last one expired in June 2015 – it’s the first such vote in 40 years of state employee collective bargaining in Illinois.

 

(OLNEY)  Another record high temperature has been set at our WVLN-WSEI National Weather Service Weather Station here at the south edge of Olney – yesterday’s high temperature, 72 degrees, topped the previous record high for February 23rd, 70 degrees, originally set 35 years ago in 1982 – the recent warm weather the Midwest has enjoyed over the past several days is here about 3 to 4 weeks ahead of schedule.

 

(OLNEY/NEWTON)  Area residents & businesses are again being alerted to a recent scam still circulating in our region – the scammers are calling & going door to door, threatening immediate disconnection of utility services unless a payment is made at that moment from a pre-paid debit card – this includes both electrical and gas services – customers are reminded to never give any payment or personal information to anyone that comes personally to a home, or to those that call or sends an email demanding a payment in this fashion – contact your local police department if you get such a call or visit and remember, this is a SCAM!

 

(OLNEY)  The Richland County Middle School Library is again this year sponsoring “One Book, One Community” in Olney – while students and local residents can read this year’s featured book, “Some Kind of Courage” by Dan Gemeinhart, the goal of the program is to promote both literacy & reading for pleasure – in less than three weeks, the author will visit the students with special presentations to be made on March 14th, giving students and the community a “meet & greet” opportunity in Olney – to get more information on the “One Book, One Community” program, visit the school website online, at  www.rcms.rccu1.net  or check out the Middle School Library’s website, at  www.rcmslibrarymediacenter.weebly.com.

 

(NEWTON)  The Jasper County Republicans will host their annual Lincoln Day Dinner a week from this Saturday night, on March 4th, at the Knights of Columbus Hall in Newton – the event will begin with the social hour at 6:00, then dinner will be served at 6:30, followed by various guest speakers – the $15 tickets are now available from any Republican Central Committee member or by calling Judy Burnell at  618-783-3185 – a raffle drawing will be held that night – the top prize is a Ruger AR-556 Rifle, 2nd prize is $100, and 3rd prize at $50 – the tickets are on sale at $5.00 each or six tickets for $20 – all are invited to attend for a great meal, a chance to win, and the chance to meet local and statewide candidates & office holders.

 

(OLNEY)  Here’s a few notes from Olney Central College  :  OCC is offering a one-day food sanitation & safety class, set to meet thru the day on Wednesday, March 15th, from 8:00 to 6:00 – successful completion of the course qualifies students to apply for the Illinois Department of Public Health’s Food Service Safety Manager Certification (FSSMC) certificate – tuition for the class is waived for Richland County businesses – call OCC to register, at  618-395-7777  :  OCC is offering the next round of free GED test preparation classes, starting Monday, March 13th – either day, night, or online courses are available with all books and materials provided at no cost – students can register from 9:00 to 2:00 Monday thru Friday in the OCC Learning Skills Center – appointments are recommended, but not required  :  and it’s this coming Monday that tickets go on sale for this spring’s OCC Theater’s production of Disney’s “The Little Mermaid” with seven performances planned over the last weekend in March and the first weekend in April – dinner theaters also available – the ticket box office at OCC will be open each Monday thru Friday from 10:00 to 2:00 or purchase tickets online, at  www.iecc.edu/occtheater.com  :  for all things, call OCC at  618-395-7777.

 

(OLNEY)  The Olney FFA Chapter at Richland County High School continues to recognize this as National FFA Week, wrapping up a busy calendar of events  :  today is Favorite Team / University Day, plus the Chapter’s fundraiser rewards trip to St. Louis  :  and tomorrow, the Chapter will help with the fundraising Bowl For Kids’ Sake to benefit Big Brothers Big Sisters of Richland County  :  a couple of notes – the Olney FFA Chapter had the 5th largest membership in the State of Illinois last year with 181 – the Olney Chapter had three State Champion Teams last year, plus the Chapter already has one State Champion this year, the Ag Marketing Plan CDE winners – the Olney Chapter also has eight members recommended to receive the State FFA Degree at this year’s State Convention in June – join us as we salute all area FFA members, both past and present, plus all the sponsors and supporters, during this National FFA Week.

 

(OLNEY/NEWTON)  The Red Cross has an emergency appeal in place, asking all eligible and/or first-time donors to get out and give blood at their next opportunity – upcoming blood drives include   :  today at the Richland County High School in Olney from 8:00 to 1:00  :  tomorrow at the Charleston Public Library from 12:00 to 4:00  :  Sunday morning at St. John’s Lutheran Church in Effingham from 8:00 to 12:00 noon  :  next Monday at the Shelbyville High School from 9:00 to 2:00  :  also Monday at the St. John’s Lutheran Church in Mattoon from 2:00 to 6:00  :  all blood types and platelets are very much needed.

 

REMINDERS  :
    The 2017 Bowl For Kids’ Sake continues this weekend at the Olney Bowling Center with all money raised to benefit the Big Brothers Big Sisters of Richland County – that’s tomorrow & Sunday – to help out, call the BBBS office in Olney at  392-3863  or Facebook Big Brothers Big Sisters of Richland County


    The St. Thomas Annual Soup Supper is this coming Sunday in the Parish Center in Newton with serving from 10:00 to 6:00 – there will be chili or vegetable soup, sandwiches, desserts, and drinks with carry-outs available until 6:00 – plus plenty of games, crafts, a basket stand, a quilt raffle, baked goodies, and more – the Supper’s “big raffle” drawing with lots of cash and prizes will begin at 5:00 – all are invited to attend


    It’s a Daddy / Daughter Dance coming up tomorrow night from 7:00 to 8:30 at the Christian Church of Olney, just east of The Holiday – co-sponsored by the East Orchard Christian Academy in Olney, the event is for area girls, preschool thru 12th grade, encouraged to bring their Dad, Grandpa, Uncle, etc…. – includes dancing, games, snacks, a photo booth, & more – for ticket info, call the EOCA at  618-392-0300


    The Greenup Volunteer Fire Department Ladies Auxiliary will host its 1st Annual Chili Supper & Silent Auction tomorrow night with serving from 4:00 to 8:00 at the Greenup Municipal Building Auditorium – admission is by donation at the door – proceeds to help purchase firefighting gear and other equipment


    Olney City Council candidate Bryce Fehrenbacher has a fundraising pancake breakfast tomorrow morning in the Olney City Park Community Building with serving from 8:00 to 10:30 – donations accepted


    The Historical Sailor Springs Foundation is serving breakfast tomorrow morning from 8:00 to 10:00 at the Foundation Building – $6 tickets at the door with carry-outs available – all are invited


    It’s the annual “pancake & sausage” breakfast tomorrow morning at the Noble Lion’s Club Building with serving from 7:00 until 12:00 noon – tickets on sale at the door with carry-outs available – all invited

 

 

 

February 23, 2017

 

(OLNEY)  A weak cold front moving to our northwest will stall out today, allowing our mild conditions to hang around for another 24 to 36 hours – but as the front eventually moves thru our area by tomorrow night, we’ll return to some rain chances, possibly some thunderstorms, tomorrow thru Friday night – then some cooler air moves in for Saturday and Sunday – it’s warmer with some rain on Monday – listen for updates.

 

(NEWTON)  In state news – Illinois’ largest public-employee union is set to announce the result of a strike authorization vote with a news conference this morning – the American Federation of State, County, and Municipal Employees accepted votes at work sites across the state from January 30th thru this past Sunday, asking the membership if a strike is necessary – it’s the first such vote in 40 years of state-employee collective bargaining – AFSCME has been unable to agree with the Governor on a contract to replace one that expired in June 2015 – a state labor regulator declared last fall that talks had reached in “impasse”.

 

(OLNEY)  The state of a new year brought renewed interest from homebuyers who drove home sales and the statewide median prices higher in January, according to Illinois Realtors – the statewide home sales last month totaled 8,502 units sold, up slightly at 1.2% from a year ago – the median price in January averaged $172,000 in Illinois, a 5.5% increase from 2016 – forty-three (43) counties reported sales gains for January 2017 over previous-year numbers – for more on the numbers, logon at www.illinoisrealtors.org/marketstats.

 

(NEWTON)  Speed limit proposals are stirring in Springfield, some of which are calling for higher limits – one plan is to raise the speed limit on Illinois highways by five miles-per-hour – that means the state limit would increase to 60 miles-per-hour and the rural interstate speed would jump to 75 miles-per-hour – the next hearing of the bill in the State House and Senate has not yet been set but is expected later this spring.

 

(OLNEY)  The Illinois Eastern Community Colleges Board of Trustees met this past Tuesday night for its regular monthly meeting – the Board  :  agreed to issue General Obligation Community College Bonds worth $6.25 million for paying claims against the District  :  approved the IECC District’s Identity Theft Prevention Program and Status Report for 2016  :  with the uncertainty of future state funding assistance, the Board approved a $2 increase for the Student Support Fee, a $5 increase to the Maintenance Fee, and a new Activity Fee of a flat rate at $60 to students taking six (6) or more credit hours in the Fall and/or Spring semesters  :  approved the collective bargaining agreement between the IECC District & the Illinois Eastern Colleges Education Association, calling for a 1.5% pay increase for bargaining unit faculty members for the 2016-2017 academic year   :  also approved a 1.5% pay hike for current District administration and staff  :  in personnel moves – approved retirement ratifications for OCC Custodian Robert Tice and Wabash Valley Nursing Instructor Teresa Odom – accepted resignations from LTC Dean of Student Services Megan Scott and from OCC Office Assistant Leann Gumbel – approved the employment status for Julie Higginbotham from LTC Office Assistant to LTC Assistant Dean of Student Services – employed Destiny Stambaugh as Coordinator of Financial Aid at LTC – approved the Faculty Seniority Lists for 2016-2017 for bargaining unit & non-bargaining unit faculty – and employed the bargaining unit and non-bargaining unit faculty for the 2017-2018 academic year  :  the IECC Board of Trustees’ next regular meeting will be March 21st.

 

(NEWTON)  The Newton City Council met this past Tuesday night – here’s the unofficial minutes from that meeting – the Council  :  approved the mowing agreement with Weston Lawn Service for 2017 thru 2019  :  agreed to pay $300 per person, plus allowable expenses for two officials to attend the Illinois Tax Increment Association Annual Conference in April  :  agreed to pay fees and allowable expenses for two Newton Police employees to attend the IJOA and IDOA Conference later this year in June  :  approved the Special Event Permit application for the “Step Up for Downs Syndrome” 5K Walk / Run event scheduled for May 6th in Newton  :  noted the Newton Aquatic Center has received a $10,000 donation in memory of the Father (Elmer) of the company that built the pool facility, Ricchio General Contractors, Inc.  :  noted upcoming meetings of the City’s Police Committee and Dues & Donations Committee  :  went into closed session for 27 minutes to discuss litigation and real estate  :  then authorized the destruction of past closed session audio recordings  :  the Newton City Council will have its next regular meeting on March 7th.

 

(OLNEY)  The Olney FFA Chapter at Richland County High School continues to recognize this as National FFA Week with a busy calendar of events  :  the Chapter will host its AGventure Petting Zoo today, plus it’s Future Career Dress Up Day  :  tomorrow is Favorite Team / University Day, plus the Chapter’s fundraiser rewards trip to St. Louis  :  and Saturday, the Chapter will help out with the fundraising Bowl For Kids’ Sake to benefit Big Brothers Big Sisters of Richland County – join us as we salute all area FFA members.

 

(NEWTON/OLNEY)  The Illinois Sheriff’s Association will again this year award over $54,000 in college scholarships throughout the state to students wishing to pursue higher education during the upcoming 2017-2018 academic year – the scholarship funds will be used for tuition and books & fees only – Sheriff’s Rick Britton in Jasper County and Andy Hires in Richland County will each be awarding one $500 scholarship, not to mention other surrounding Sheriffs in their respective counties as well – some restrictions apply – applications are now available at the Sheriff’s offices in Olney, Newton, and elsewhere, plus they’re online at  www.ilsheriff.org  – the submission deadline is March 15th, 2017 – for more details, contact your local Sheriff’s office, the Illinois Sheriff’s Association, a high school advisor, or college financial aid office.

 

(OLNEY)  Olney Central College is offering a new course this spring, the first of its kind in the area – the Unmanned Aerial Systems I Class will meet Monday nights from 6:00 to 9:00, beginning March 13th and continuing thru May 8th – the course will have vital information for commercial drone users, such as rules and regulations of operation, air space use, preflight operations & inspections, and more – for more details or to sign up, call the Student Services Office today at Olney Central College, at  618-395-7777.

 

(OLNEY/NEWTON)  The Red Cross has an emergency appeal in place, asking all eligible and/or first-time donors to get out and give blood at their next opportunity – upcoming blood drives include   :  today at the Stewardson-Strasburg High School from 9:00 to 2:00  :  today at the Flora Wal-Mart Store from 11:00 to 3:00  :  tomorrow at the Richland County High School in Olney from 8:00 to 1:00  :  all blood types needed.

 

(OLNEY)  Another weather note – yesterday’s high temperature, 72 degrees, tied the record high for the date of February 22nd, which was originally set 95 years ago, in 1922 – near record high temperatures are also expected both today and tomorrow as well – while the month of February is on course to be one of the driest Februarys on record, it is also well on its way to become the warmest February in Illinois history.

 

REMINDERS  :
    The 2017 Bowl For Kids’ Sake continues this weekend at the Olney Bowling Center with all money raised to benefit the Big Brothers Big Sisters of Richland County – that’s this Saturday & Sunday – to help out, call the BBBS office in Olney at  392-3863  or Facebook Big Brothers Big Sisters of Richland County


    The St. Thomas Annual Soup Supper is this coming Sunday in the Parish Center in Newton with serving from 10:00 to 6:00 – there will be chili or vegetable soup, sandwiches, desserts, and drinks with carry-outs available until 6:00 – plus plenty of games, crafts, a basket stand, a quilt raffle, baked goodies, and more – the Supper’s “big raffle” drawing with lots of cash and prizes will begin at 5:00 – all are invited to attend


    It’s a Daddy / Daughter Dance coming up this Saturday night from 7:00 to 8:30 at the Christian Church of Olney, just east of The Holiday – co-sponsored by the East Orchard Christian Academy in Olney, the event is for area girls, preschool thru 12th grade, encouraged to bring their Dad, Grandpa, Uncle, etc…. – includes dancing, games, snacks, a photo booth, & more – for ticket info, call the EOCA at  618-392-0300


    The Historical Sailor Springs Foundation is serving breakfast this Saturday morning from 8:00 to 10:00 at the Foundation Building – $6 tickets at the door with carry-outs available – all are invited


    It’s the annual “pancake & sausage” breakfast this Saturday morning at the Noble Lion’s Club Building with serving from 7:00 until 12:00 noon – tickets on sale at the door with carry-outs available – all invited


    It’s a Blues Night Coffeehouse tonight at the Vincennes University Jefferson Student Union, located at 1379 North Chestnut Street, adjacent to the university’s P.E. Complex – starting at 7:00 (Illinois time), the free event will feature various VU student musicians, plus several guest performers as well – all are invited

 

 

 

February 22, 2017

 

(OLNEY)  As widespread fog is a problem again this morning, we have plenty of cloud cover thru much of the day as a frontal boundary moving south across the Upper Midwest will stall out to our north – therefore a couple of dry and warm days before a cold front moves thru with rain, possibly storms, on Friday, before colder air arrives later that night – we’ll be back to cool & dry conditions this weekend – listen for updates.

 

(NEWTON)  In state news – the legendary country group Alabama and classic rock star John Mellencamp will be among the performers at this year’s Illinois State Fair – officials yesterday announced five of the eleven headliners for the 2017 event in Springfield – the others include Neal McCoy, Chase Rice, and Jason Derulo – more acts will be announced later – the Illinois State Fair is scheduled for August 11th thru 20th.

 

(OLNEY)  Lawmakers in several states are considering requirements for doctors to inform women seeking medical abortions about an unproven procedure called “abortion reversal” – many doctors’ groups oppose the bills because of flawed science and ethical concerns, plus there’s no evidence the procedure even works and there’s little information about its safety – since 2015, Arkansas and South Dakota have enacted laws requiring doctors to tell women about the option – an Arizona law was challenged in court & later repealed – bills are under consideration in Colorado, North Carolina, Utah, and Indiana – no debate yet in Illinois.

 

(NEWTON)  Secretary of State Jesse White is continuing his push in Springfield for a law that would allow16 & 17 year olds to register for the state’s First Person Consent Organ / Tissue Donor Registry when they receive their driver’s license or identification card – 47 other states have already amended their laws to allow this proposal – there are currently over 5,000 people in Illinois awaiting a life-saving organ transplant – more information’s available online at  www.LifeGoesOn.com  or also online at  www.GiftofHope.org.

 

(OLNEY)  Chief Justice Lloyd A. Karmeier and the Illinois Supreme Court have announced that Circuit Judge David K. Overstreet of the Second Judicial Circuit has been assigned as an Appellate Court Justice here in the Fifth District Appellate Court – Judge Overstreet was assigned to fill the vacancy created when Justice James R. Moore, who previously held the assignment, was elected to the Fifth District Appellate Court last November – the assignment of Judge Overstreet takes effect next Monday, February 27th, and will remain in effect until further order of the court – Judge Overstreet is a native of Mt. Vernon – the Fifth Judicial District is comprised of the 37 southernmost counties in Illinois, pretty much everywhere south of a line along Interstate 70 – this includes Richland, Jasper, & all surrounding counties in Southeastern Illinois.

 

(OLNEY)  The Richland County Soil & Water Conservation District will be hosting a CRP Pollinator Meeting next Tuesday morning, February 28th, from 9:00 to 12:00 noon, at The Holiday in Olney, with a free lunch to be served – information provided includes pollinator benefits, habitat establishment, pollinator programs & guidelines, projects & seeds, and pollinator conservation programs available to landowners and operators in Edwards, Wabash, Lawrence, and Richland Counties – along with USDA, NRCS, and FSA staff, others on hand will represent the Quail & Upland Game Alliance, Trees Forever, and Roundstone Seed – those who want to attend should call the Richland County SWCD Office by today at  618-392-7141, extension #3.

 

(NEWTON)  Online registration is continuing for the 2017 Law Enforcement Torch Run Polar Plunge, all to benefit Special Olympics Illinois – last year, more than $1.9 million was raised by some 6,480 statewide Plungers – among the 22 total Polar Plunge locations and dates, here’s those in the downstate area – this coming Saturday, February 25th at Carlyle Lake, then a week from Saturday, March 4th at Lake Sara near Effingham, and also March 4th at Rend Lake near Ina – go online to register, at  www.plungeillinois.com.

 

(OLNEY)  The Olney FFA Chapter at Richland County High School has a busy calendar of events for the rest of this National FFA Week  :  the FFA Cookout is at lunch today, plus it’s Official FFA Dress Day / Blue & Gold Dress Up Day  :  the Chapter will host its AGventure Petting Zoo tomorrow, along with Future Career Dress Up Day  :  Friday is Favorite Team / University Day, plus the Chapter’s fundraiser rewards trip to St. Louis  :  and on Saturday, the Chapter will help out with the fundraising Bowl For Kids’ Sake to benefit Big Brothers Big Sisters of Richland County – join us as we salute all current & past FFA members.

 

(OLNEY)  The Illinois Eastern Community Colleges Associate Degree Nursing Program is extending its application deadline for Fall 2017 at Olney Central, Lincoln Trail, and Wabash Valley Colleges – space is limited, so those wishing to apply should schedule an appointment as soon as possible to meet with the nursing program advisor at the college of their choice – applicants must take the Test of Essential Academic Skills (TEAS) exam to be considered for acceptance into the program and registration is recommended as soon as possible – the testing dates at OCC are February 23rd (tomorrow) & March 7th and at LTC March 2nd and March 9th – for further details about the nursing program at any of the IECC colleges, call the respective Student Service Offices in Olney, Robinson, or Mt. Carmel, or logon at  www.iecc.edu/nursing.

 

(OLNEY/NEWTON)  The Red Cross has an emergency appeal in place, asking all eligible and/or first-time donors to get out and give blood at their next opportunity – upcoming blood drives include   :  today at the Altamont High School from 8:00 to 1:00  :  also today at the Blood Donation Center in Effingham from 11:30 to 6:00  :  tomorrow at the Stewardson-Strasburg High School from 9:00 to 2:00  :  tomorrow at the Flora Wal-Mart Store from 11:00 to 3:00  :  Friday at the Richland County High School in Olney from 8:00 to 1:00  :  all blood types and platelets are much needed to help replenish the low area blood supply.

 

REMINDERS  :
    A reminder from the City of Olney – city crews will begin mowing and spring maintenance at Haven Hill Cemetery, Maple Dale Cemetery, and Haven Hill Memorial Garden during the week of March 13th – those who’d like to keep any ground decorations should have them picked up by Sunday, March 12th


    Tickets are still on sale for the Olney Chamber of Commerce’s “Ladies Night 2017” which is set for Tuesday, March 7th, at The Holiday – all area ladies are invited out to an evening with entertainment, door prizes, a style show, a great dinner, & more – the $15 tickets are on sale at area banks or the Chamber office


    The St. Thomas Annual Soup Supper is this coming Sunday in the Parish Center in Newton with serving from 10:00 to 6:00 – there will be chili or vegetable soup, sandwiches, desserts, and drinks with carry-outs available until 6:00 – plus plenty of games, crafts, a basket stand, a quilt raffle, baked goodies, and more – the Supper’s “big raffle” drawing with lots of cash and prizes will begin at 5:00 – all are invited to attend


    The Greenup Volunteer Fire Department Ladies Auxiliary will host its 1st Annual Chili Supper & Silent Auction this Saturday night with serving from 4:00 to 8:00 at the Greenup Municipal Building Auditorium – admission is by donation at the door – proceeds to help purchase firefighting gear and other equipment


    A pancake breakfast fundraiser for Olney City Council candidate Bryce Fehrenbacher will be held this coming Saturday morning in the Olney City Park Community Building – with serving from 8:00 to 10:30, there’s no entry fee, however all donations would greatly be appreciated


    The music of Bob Marley, Eric Clapton, Led Zeppelin, and the Beatles will be featured at a Blues Night Coffeehouse tomorrow night at the Vincennes University Jefferson Student Union, located at 1379 North Chestnut Street, adjacent to the university’s P.E. Complex – starting at 7:00 (Illinois time), the free event will feature various VU student musicians, plus several guest performers as well – all are invited


    The Pink Warrior Sisters of Richland County has a fundraiser today thru tonight at Monical’s Pizza in Olney – customers can present a fundraising flyer when paying or while ordering for a pick up and a portion of the sales will be donated to the Sisters’ Relay For Life team, all to help with the local fight against cancer

 

 

 

February 21, 2017

 

(OLNEY)  As the slow-moving cold front continues to edge eastward thru the Midwest today, our chances of rain will linger thru this Tuesday – then after some more widespread fog thru tomorrow morning, we’ll get some sunshine on Wednesday – while we stay warm for the rest of the work week, another front will bring us rain Friday and cooler for Saturday and Sunday – then more precip Monday – listen for updates.

 

(OLNEY)  In what’s shaping up to be one of the warmest, if not the warmest ever February, a new record high temperature was set for yesterday’s date, February 20 – yesterday’s 73 degree high broke the previous record high of  70 degrees, which was originally set 87 years ago in 1930 – in an unrelated note, it was the 20th of February two years ago in 2015 that the new record low temperature for that date was set when we dropped down to 12 below zero – look for more record high temperatures later for the rest of this week.

 

(NEWTON)  In state news – personnel across Illinois are adapting to a new state law that requires school districts to have an emergency protocol in place to deal with asthma emergencies – under the new law, all children with asthma must have a written “asthma action plan” as the school and school workers must be trained to handle asthma emergencies – the Illinois Asthma Consortium reports that nearly 14% of children have asthma, but more than 76% of those children do not have their asthma conditions under control.

 

(OLNEY)  Downstate residents are invited to hear the latest discoveries about a huge Native American settlement excavated in what is now East St. Louis – a special presentation will be made this coming Sunday at the Cahokia Mounds State Historic Site with one of the state’s leading archaeologists to give the free presentation starting at 2:00 in the site’s Interpretive Center – the excavations in East St. Louis were made for the relocation of Interstate 70 approaching the new Stan Musial Bridge where a massive settlement was found, uncovering more than 6,000 pits, structures, monumental posts, and other features dating from about AD 900 to 1250 – for more information, logon at  www.cahokiamounds.org.

 

(NEWTON)  The Abraham Lincoln Presidential Museum in Springfield plans to unveil an exhibit that chronicles the history of the rivalry between the Chicago Cubs and the St. Louis Cardinals – developed with help from both teams and the National Baseball Hall of Fame, the exhibit will open on March 24th.

 

(OLNEY/NEWTON)  During this National FFA Week, we take time to recognize and note all of our area FFA members and their respective chapters in the various schools throughout our downstate region – this year’s theme is “Transform Purpose To Action” as FFA members take special time this week to celebrate with our local chapters with their list of various activities – everyone can take part in this Friday’s National Wear Blue Day to show support for local FFA chapters and members – plus join us as we salute all of our local and regional FFA chapters, members, sponsors, and supporters during this National FFA Week.

 

(OLNEY)  Ameren Illinois customers are encouraged to enroll in a free program that rewards them for using less energy – the Peak Time Rewards program provides electric customers with a bill credit when they reduce their electricity usage during times of peak electricity demand, typically on hot summer days – the deadline to register for the program is March 1st, with opportunities to save beginning on June 1st – it’s on days when demand for electricity is expected to spike, Ameren Illinois will notify customers that it is calling a Peak Time Rewards “event” – the program participants who then take energy-saving actions during this pre-defined period can earn bill credits – the program is available in Olney as a customer benefit of advance, or smart, meters that Ameren Illinois has installed in the area – to learn more or to enroll, go online to  www.peaktimerewards.com  or call  844-787-7874  – there is no cost to take part in the program.

 

(NEWTON)  The Jasper County Republicans will host their annual Lincoln Day Dinner a week from this Saturday night, on March 4th, at the Knights of Columbus Hall in Newton – the event will begin with the social hour at 6:00, then dinner will be served at 6:30, followed by various guest speakers – the $15 tickets are now available from any Republican Central Committee member or by calling Judy Burnell at  618-783-3185 – a raffle drawing will be held that night – the top prize is a Ruger AR-556 Rifle, 2nd prize is $100, and 3rd prize at $50 – the tickets are on sale at $5.00 each or six tickets for $20 – all are invited to attend for a great meal, a chance to win, and the chance to meet local and statewide candidates & office holders.

 

(OLNEY)  The State DNR's Illinois Recreational Access Program (IRAP) has added Adult Turkey Hunting to its growing list of activities on private land in Illinois – in fact, the Adult Turkey Hunting for the third and fourth seasons is available to any registered hunter in eight counties, including three in our area, Clark, Fayette, and Christian, plus the others, Greene, Macoupin, McDonough, Sangamon, and Schuyler – plus youth turkey hunters, those under the age of 18, can apply to hunt on private property for youth turkey season and seasons three and four in at least 35 counties across Illinois – and more good news.....the youth season is now expanded to two weekends, March 25th and 26th, and April 1st and 2nd, throughout the entire state – the youth season deadline is this coming Thursday, the 23rd, and March 10th for season three and four – plus other deadlines apply – check the State DNR website for details, at  www.dnr.illinois.gov.

 

(OLNEY)  The Olney FFA Chapter at Richland County High School has a busy calendar of events for the rest of this National FFA Week  :  the Chapter is hosting a Teacher Appreciation Breakfast this morning, plus today is Twin Tuesday and official Dress Up Day  :  it’s the FFA Cookout at lunch tomorrow, plus Official FFA Dress Day / Blue & Gold Dress Up Day  :  the Chapter will host its annual AGventure Petting Zoo on Thursday, along with Future Career Dress Up Day  :  Friday is Favorite Team / University Day, plus the Chapter’s fundraiser rewards trip to St. Louis  :  and on Saturday, the Chapter will help out with the fundraising Bowl For Kids’ Sake to benefit Big Brothers Big Sisters of Richland County – join us as we salute all current and past FFA members of the Olney Chapter, plus their sponsors and supporters alike.

 

(OLNEY/NEWTON)  The Red Cross has an emergency appeal in place, asking all eligible and/or first-time donors to get out and give blood at their next opportunity – upcoming blood drives include   :  tomorrow at the Altamont High School from 8:00 to 1:00  :  also tomorrow at the Blood Donation Center in Effingham from 11:30 to 6:00  :  Thursday at the Stewardson-Strasburg High School from 9:00 to 2:00  :  Thursday at the Flora Wal-Mart Store from 11:00 to 3:00  :  Friday at the Richland County High School in Olney from 8:00 to 1:00  :  all blood types and platelets are much needed to help replenish the low area blood supply.

 

(NEWTON/OLNEY)  There’s a couple of meetings scheduled for tonight  :  the Newton City Council will meet tonight at the Newton City Hall, starting at 6:00 – the agenda includes several New Business items, plus a couple committee reports and an executive session to discuss litigation and real estate  :  the IECC Board of Trustees will meet tonight at Lincoln Trail College, northeast of Robinson, beginning at 7:00 – it’s a rather normal agenda with an executive session as well  :  both meetings are open to the public.

 

REMINDERS  :
    The St. Thomas Annual Soup Supper is this coming Sunday in the Parish Center in Newton with serving from 10:00 to 6:00 – there will be chili or vegetable soup, sandwiches, desserts, and drinks with carry-outs available until 6:00 – plus plenty of games, crafts, a basket stand, a quilt raffle, baked goodies, and more – the Supper’s “big raffle” drawing with lots of cash and prizes will begin at 5:00 – all are invited to attend


    It’s a Daddy / Daughter Dance coming up this Saturday night from 7:00 to 8:30 at the Christian Church of Olney, just east of The Holiday – co-sponsored by the East Orchard Christian Academy in Olney, the event is for area girls, preschool thru 12th grade, encouraged to bring their Dad, Grandpa, Uncle, etc…. – includes dancing, games, snacks, a photo booth, & more – for ticket info, call the EOCA at  618-392-0300


    It’s the annual “pancake & sausage” breakfast this Saturday morning at the Noble Lion’s Club Building with serving from 7:00 until 12:00 noon – tickets on sale at the door with carry-outs available – all invited


    The Pink Warrior Sisters of Richland County has a fundraiser tomorrow at Monical’s Pizza in Olney – customers can present a fundraising flyer when paying or while ordering for a pick up and a portion of the sales will be donated to the Sisters’ Relay For Life team, all to help with the local fight against cancer