LOCAL NEWS

Local News

December 8, 2016

 

(OLNEY)  A high pressure ridge now sits well to our west / southwest, which will continue to keep us dry, but it also allows that flow of cold, Arctic air as our wind chill readings will be the coldest this fall for the next few nights – the cold air will be countered by some relatively warmer air for the end of the weekend then we’re back in the deepfreeze next week – maybe some snow and rain Sunday – listen for updates.

 

(NEWTON)  In state news – Governor Bruce Rauner says he wants Democratic leaders to present him a budget proposal to end an 18-month stalemate before the two sides meet again for another round of talks – Rauner canceled today’s meeting in when he learned that no proposal would be offered – the Democrats say the Governor himself, should be the one presenting a budget proposal – the back-and-forth game continues.

 

(NEWTON)  The Illinois State Geological Survey says it has been awarded a pair of federal grants worth a total of more than $12.6 million to try to mitigate carbon dioxide emissions from the use of fossil fuels – the U.S. Department of Energy funds will pay for work to build on a pre-existing project in Decatur while another project will study the details at another  research site in east-central Illinois – the State Geological Survey is part of the Prairie Research Institute on the University of  Illinois campus in Champaign.

 

(OLNEY)  The Illinois Historic Preservation Agency has some weekend activities  :  the oldest surviving capitol building in Illinois will host a free event this Saturday night from 6:00 to 8:00, plus the first 100 families to visit the Vandalia Statehouse State Historic Site will receive free Christmas ornaments – while the historic site will be collecting food items for those in need, cookies and cider will be served to those attending – the Fayette County site will be illuminated by more than 250 candles  :  meanwhile, the Lincoln Log Cabin State Historic Site will host an old-fashioned Christmas this Saturday with music and treats – located 8 miles south of Charleston, site interpreters will share the history of Santa Claus from 1:00 to 4:00, plus the Visitor’s Center will have music, snacks, & family-friendly activities  :  all are invited to both sites.

 

(OLNEY)  The investigation continues into a single vehicle traffic accident that occurred at 12:50 early yesterday (Wednesday) morning along I-70 in Clark County – the State Police report that 34 year old Kasey Iffert of Noble was eastbound on I-70 when she became ill and pulled her SUV onto the shoulder, but lost control and drove off the roadway and into a drainage ditch as the vehicle overturned – one passenger, 48 year old Barbara Staser of Effingham, was transported to Union Hospital in Terre Haute with minor injuries – the driver and two other passengers, 38 year old Sara Keck of Cisne and 47 year old Tamara Boerngen of Effingham, were not injured – Iffert was ticketed for failure to reduce speed to avoid an accident.

 

(NEWTON)  The numbers are out for this year’s seven day Illinois Firearm Deer Season – hunters harvested a preliminary total of 79,429 deer which ended this past Sunday, that’s an 8.5% drop from a year ago – in our ten area counties, Wayne County had the largest deer harvest during the seven days, followed by Clay, Jasper, Crawford, Effingham, Richland, Cumberland, Lawrence, Edwards, & Wabash – while nine of the area counties had a drop in harvest numbers from a year ago, Jasper County had the only increase in numbers – the Illinois Muzzleloader-Only Season is this weekend, tomorrow thru Sunday.

 

(OLNEY)  The Illinois State Police has announced District 12 Troopers will be out conducting Alcohol Countermeasure Enforcement (ACE) Patrols and Nighttime Enforcement (NITE) Patrols in selected counties for the rest of this month, December – both initiatives will focus on preventing, detecting, and taking enforcement action in response to violations associated with impaired driving & occupant restraint.

 

(NEWTON)  Considering the farm economy, nearly 51% of Illinois Farm Bureau (IFB) members surveyed feel about the same level of optimism for the coming year as compared with 2016 – the answer came in response to an email survey of 277 members – fighting thru the third straight year of commodity prices near record low levels, 81% of respondents said they plan to reduce inputs in 2017 – in fact, 93% plan to delay equipment purchases, 44% will buy less expensive seed, 40% will negotiate lower cash rent, nearly 38% will delay or cut back on chemical & fertilizer purchases, 9% will choose a lower level of crop insurance or give up a portion of rented ground – among the priority issues in the coming year, respondents said the top concern is intrusive & costly federal regulations, followed by keeping federal crop insurance viable.

 

(OLNEY)  The Richland County High School Future Business Leaders of America is hosting a Career Day on Friday morning, January 13th, from 8:00 until 11:40, in the RCHS Ron Herrin Gym – the FBLA invites any Richland County business to set up a display & to take the opportunity to talk with high school students about the occupations & careers that are available right here in Richland County – any business interested in participating is asked to e-mail Brenda Stallard at  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.  by tomorrow, December 9th.

 

(NEWTON)  The 2016 Holly Jolly Jasper County Christmas continues this weekend in Newton, the second of three consecutive Fridays celebrating the life of Jasper County native Burl Ives – tomorrow only is the annual “Postmark Day” at the Newton Post Office from 8:30 to 5:00 thru the day – then Friday night from 5:00 to 7:00 there will be professional pictures with Santa, plus craft activities for children and a chance to decorate your own cookie – not to mention great shopping, cookies & hot chocolate, visits with Santa Claus & other Holly Jolly Characters, & more in downtown Newton – also register tomorrow night on the Square for prizes donated by area businesses with the drawing at Arndt’s – plus don’t forget about Breakfast with Santa at 10:30 Saturday morning at the St. Thomas Parish Center – also, receipts available for Chamber Bucks as well – for more details, find it all on Facebook, under Holly Jolly Jasper County Christmas.

 

(NEWTON)  The Red Cross is asking all eligible and/or first-time donors to get out & give blood at their next opportunity – upcoming blood drives  :  today at the KC Hall in Newton from 1:00 to 6:00 – all donors will have their name entered into a drawing for two Holiday World tickets  :  tomorrow at the Effingham Blood Donation Center from 7:00 to 2:00  :  tomorrow at the Sandoval High School from 11:00 to 4:00  :  also tomorrow at the Odin High School from 1:00 to 5:00  :  then next Monday at Richland Memorial Hospital from 12:00 to 4:00  :  all blood types and platelets are needed to help rebuild low area supplies.

 

(OLNEY)  The 2016 Rotary Radio Auction is this coming Saturday morning on Freedom 92.9 WSEI – it’s from 9:00 to 12:00 noon and features hundreds of items available for purchase – all the proceeds will be used for the Good Samaritan and for Rotary Scholarships at both Olney Central College & Richland County High School – to view the list of 105 items up for purchase, go to our website, click on the “Community” tab, at  www.freedom929.com  – for more details or information, like the Olney Rotary Club on Facebook.

 

REMINDERS  :
    The Heritage House Museum has its Christmas Open House this Sunday from 1:00 to 4:00, at the corner of Kitchell Avenue & Elm Street in Olney – also tour the Mcsburg One-Room School House – refreshments and live entertainment included


    The Beulah United Methodist Church has its 25th annual “Travel Back to Bethlehem” nativity scene this Saturday night from 5:30 to 8:30 with free refreshments in the Fellowship Hall – also collecting food items or cash donations to help those in need – drive south of Sumner and follow the luminaries to the church


    The Jasper County Junior High Band and 5th & 6th Grade Band students will host a “Parents Night Out” this Saturday night from 5:00 to 9:00 – children ages 3 years old thru 6th grade can be dropped off at the Junior High School in Newton and spend a Holly Jolly evening with the Band, Band-Aide members, and teachers – includes age-appropriate games, crafts, movies, and snacks – cost at only $10 per child


    It’s a Holly Jolly Craft Show this Saturday from 11:00 to 3:00 in the Knights of Columbus Hall in Newton with over 25 vendors taking part – items available include bracelets, jewelry, candies, wine, soaps, wreaths, metal works, books, tupperware, & more – door prizes and cash & carry – lunch will be served


    The Olney Public Library will host a Santa Make It / Take It Workshop this Saturday afternoon, starting at 2:00 – it will be free craft time for all ages at the Olney Public Library this Saturday – check it out


    It’s another Friday night “taco night” at the Olney VFW tomorrow night, with serving from 5:30 to 7:30 – includes tacos, nachos, taco salads, and much more – eat in or carry-out – all are invited this Friday night


    The Richland County Board has its regular monthly meeting tonight in the County Jail meeting room, starting at 7:00 – the Board’s Finance Committee meets an hour earlier at 6:00 – all open to the public


    The Embarras River Basin Agency office in Newton will be distributing federal surplus commodities today from 4:00 to 6:00 – then again tomorrow from 1:30 to 3:30 while supplies last – requirements apply


    The Olney Christmas Lights Display will be clicked on this evening at 5:00 – the Lights Display in the Olney City Park will be on each night now thru December 31st for the public’s viewing

 

 

 

December 7, 2016

 

(OLNEY)  A high pressure ridge overhead will keep us mostly dry and cold for the next couple of days and nights – although there is a slight chance of a flurrie or two today, the better chance of some light snow will come Saturday night into Sunday morning, but then mostly light rain by Sunday afternoon – then another shot of Arctic air by midweek of next week with mostly dry conditions – stay tuned for continued updates.

 

(NEWTON)  In state news – Governor Bruce Rauner is set to sign legislation that provides billions of dollars in subsidies to Exelon Corporation so the power giant can keep unprofitable nuclear plants running in Clinton and the Quad Cities – while giving $235 million a year for 13 years to Exelon, the bill also calls for more than 4 million customers of Commonworth Edison and Ameren to pay more to finance the plan.

 

(NEWTON)  A lawsuit accuses a national job-placement company of systematically discriminating against blacks in favor of Hispanic workers, often to comply with racially based requests from client firms – the filing yesterday in federal court alleges Personnel Staffing Group LLC used code words to distinguish races – the company has more than 60 offices in nearly 40 states, including Illinois – also goes by MVP Staffing.

 

(OLNEY)  Students and researchers from around the nation are preparing to travel to Illinois to view next year’s total eclipse of the sun – a team from Louisiana State University & others will visit the SIU campus in Carbondale as two large weather balloons will be launched from Saluki  Stadium about 90 minutes before the total solar eclipse, which will be at 1:21pm on August 21st – equipped with video cameras, the balloons will send real-time images to a NASA TV program – the eclipse will be the first total solar eclipse over the mainland United States since 1979 and downstate Illinois will view the longest duration of the eclipse.

 

(NEWTON)  The Newton City Council met last night in regular session – the Board  :  approved the City’s annual Tax Levy for Fiscal Year 2016 as presented  :  agreed to abate the taxes for the Newton Aquatic Center for the Tax Levy Year  :  also approved the Abatement Certificate for the Newton Aquatic Center  :  approved the City of Newton Electric Utility Capital Improvement Plan for years 2017 thru 2021  :  noted the success of the seven CDAP rehabilitated homes in Newton as the homeowners now realize utility savings and safer, code-compliant homes  :  also noted the recent success of Newton Police Officer Riley Britton and Newton’s K-9 Officer “Dano”  :  noted that proposals for “Welcome to Newton” signs have been distributed with options to be discussed with input from the Tourism Council and Jasper County Chamber of Commerce  :  agreed to investigate options of possibly improving the City of Newton traffic after school  :  and took no other action after a 50 minute closed session to discuss litigation, real estate, and personnel  :  the Newton City Council will have its next regular bi-monthly meeting on December 20th.

 

(NOBLE)  The Village of Noble held its caucus this past Monday night at Village Hall  :  the Peoples Party chose three nominees for Trustees, including Carol O’Dell, Paul Summers, and Haley Miller – the Peoples Party also had one nominee for the Mayor of Noble, Jerry Britton  :  the Citizens Party chose one nominee for the four year Trustees’ position, Judith Anderson – also one nominee for the two year Trustees’ seat, Janet Pflaum – chose one nominee for the Mayor of Noble, Richard Clark – and selected one nominee for Village Clerk, Tresa Hundley  :  the Village of Noble spring municipal election will be held April 4th, 2017.

 

(OLNEY)  A reminder to all the children (and parents) in Olney, that the Elves have delivered and set up the Letters to Santa Mailbox in Bower Park, across the street from the Olney City Hall – with Christmas nearly two weeks away, letters to Santa from all area children are now being accepted as each child lets Santa know what they want for Christmas – Santa reminds everyone that it’s very important that children include their full name and address so Santa can respond to all children – plus, there’s no need for a stamp as Santa has pre-paid all the postage – all area children are encouraged to get those in as soon as possible.

 

(OLNEY)  The Richland County Highway Department is trimming brush along the road right-of-ways this week – motorists should be alert and avoid the following areas during normal working hours each day for the rest of this week  :  Elbow Lane in Decker Township, between Ridge Road and Higgin Switch Road  :  the Stringtown Road in both Claremont & German Townships, between Pleasant Ridge Lane and Mt. Gilead Lane  :  and Prairieton Road, north of U.S. Route 50, in both Claremont & German Townships.

 

(NEWTON)  The 2016 Holly Jolly Jasper County Christmas continues this weekend in Newton, the second of three consecutive Fridays celebrating the life of Jasper County native Burl Ives – this Friday is the annual Postmark Day at the Newton Post Office only from 8:30 to 5:00 thru the day – then Friday night from 5:00 to 7:00 there will be professional pictures with Santa, plus craft activities for children and a chance to decorate your own cookie – not to mention great shopping, cookies & hot chocolate, visits with Santa Claus & other Holly Jolly Characters, and more in downtown Newton – also register Friday night on the Square for prizes donated by area businesses with the drawing at Arndt’s – plus don’t forget about Breakfast with Santa at 10:30 Saturday morning at the St. Thomas Parish Center – also, receipts available for Chamber Bucks as well – for more details, find it all on Facebook, under Holly Jolly Jasper County Christmas.

 

(OLNEY)  Here’s some reminders for area hunters  :  the IDNR’s Annual Central Illinois Youth Goose Hunt is scheduled for January 15th and 16th, 2017 – youth hunters interested can register now – the signup is December 30th  :  Illinois Archery Deer and Archery Fall Turkey seasons remain open now thru January 15th, 2017 – permits are available over-the-counter at DNR Direct license and permit vendors  :  hunters can now apply for the second lottery for 2017 Illinois Spring Wild Turkey Season permits – the application deadline is January 11th, 2017  :  and the second statewide Muzzleloader-Only Deer Hunting Season is this coming Friday thru Sunday  :  for all things outdoors, check the IDNR website at  www.dnr.illinois.gov.

 

(OLNEY)  The Mt. Erie Ruritan Club is getting ready for its annual Farm Machinery Consignment Sale on January 16th, 2017, starting at 9:00 that morning, at the Mt. Erie Ruritan Club building & grounds – the consignment sale will include all types of farm machinery and farm equipment, including ATV’s, trucks, trailers, combines, livestock equipment, and other miscellaneous items – consignned items must be received before December 24th, 2016, two weeks from this Saturday – food will also be served that day on the grounds – for details or consignment information, call the Sale Manager Steve Bass, at  618-838-8398.

 

(NEWTON)  The Red Cross is asking all eligible and/or first-time donors to get out & give blood at their next opportunity – upcoming blood drives  :  today at the Blood Donation Center in Effingham from 11:30 to 6:00  :  also today at the Patoka High School from 9:00 to 2:00  :  tomorrow at the KC Hall in Newton from 1:00 to 6:00  :  all blood types and platelets are needed to help replenish the low area supplies.

 

(OLNEY)  The 2016 Rotary Radio Auction is this coming Saturday morning on Freedom 92.9 WSEI – it’s from 9:00 to 12:00 noon and features hundreds of items available for purchase – all the proceeds will be used for the Good Samaritan and for Rotary Scholarships at both Olney Central College & Richland County High School – to view the list of 105 items up for purchase, go to our website, click on the “Community” tab, at  www.freedom929.com  – for more details or information, like the Olney Rotary Club on Facebook.

 

REMINDERS  :
    The Holy Cross Catholic Church in Wendelin will host its annual “Advent Evensong” this Sunday at 4:00 – a candlelight service with scripture, English carols, and Austrian Christmas music, all sung in German, by the Wendelin Kloepfen Singers – refreshments afterwards – all in memory of Father David Braun


    The Heritage Museum has its Christmas Open House this Sunday from 1:00 to 4:00, at the corner of Kitchell Avenue & Elm Street in Olney – also tour the Mcsburg One-Room School House – refreshments


    The Jasper County Junior High Band and 5th & 6th Grade Band students will host a “Parents Night Out” this Saturday night from 5:00 to 9:00 – children ages 3 years old thru 6th grade can be dropped off at the Junior High School in Newton and spend a Holly Jolly evening with the Band, Band-Aide members, and teachers – includes age-appropriate games, crafts, movies, and snacks – cost at only $10 per child


    Hunter Meritt and Amelia Ginder invites everyone to the Miss White Squirrel Queen’s Reception & Good Samaritan Food Drive at the Olney City Park Community Building this Saturday afternoon from 2:00 to 4:00 – items needed include paper towels, toilet paper, laundry/dish/hand soap, canned soup, vegetables, & fruit, sugar, cornbread mix, peanut butter, hamburger helper, and more – all are urged to stop by


    The Embarras River Basin Agency office in Newton will be distributing federal surplus commodities tomorrow from 4:00 to 6:00 – then again Friday from 1:30 to 3:30 while supplies last – requirements apply


    The Olney Christmas Lights Display will be clicked on this evening at 5:00 – the Lights Display in the Olney City Park will be on each night now thru December 31st for the public’s viewing

 

 

 

December 6, 2016

 

(OLNEY)  As the low pressure system that’s giving us rain this morning moves off to the east by tonight, our rain will end today and a high pressure ridge will build in by early tomorrow – with that, the cold Arctic air also moves into our region tomorrow and Thursday – another system could bring us more light rain, maybe mixed with some snow Saturday night thru Monday as temps stay in the 30’s – listen for updates.

 

(NEWTON)  In state news – a decision on a proposed high-voltage power transmission line that would run thru several Illinois counties is now heading to the state Supreme Court after an energy company decided to appeal a ruling against construction – the high court has agreed to review an appellate court’s decision on the Rock Island Clean Line, a 500-mile electric project transmitting wind energy from Iowa turbines – the project has faced four years of legal opposition by the Illinois Landowners Alliance & Illinois Farm Bureau.

 

(OLNEY)  Governor Bruce Rauner has appointed more than three dozen people to lead the planning for Illinois’ 200th birthday celebration – some of those listed include SIU President Randy Dunn, Chicago Bulls & White Sox Chairman Jerry Reinsdorf, and Chicago Cubs Chairman Tom Ricketts – Illinois will mark the 200th anniversary of the adoption of the Illinois Constitution of 1818 on August 26th, 2018 – plus, December 3rd, 2018, will mark the 200th anniversary of Illinois’ official admission to the union as a state.

 

(NEWTON)  Illinois will mark the 75th anniversary of the attack on Pearl Harbor and honor the men and women who died there with a ceremony in Springfield tomorrow – the Department of Veterans’ Affairs event will be held at the Disabled American Veterans Hall and include a wreath laying in the waters of Lake Springfield – more than 2,300 U.S. service members died in the attack in Hawaii on December 7th, 1941.

 

(OLNEY)  The Richland County Board met in special session last night to re-organize after the November 8th election – the Board  :  elected Dennis Graves as the next County Board Chairperson  :  chose Melinda Hunt as the Vice-Chair  :  went into closed session to discuss negotiations, but took no action after returning to open session  :  the Board’s regular monthly meeting will be held this coming Thursday night at 7:00 in the County Jail meeting room in Olney – the Board’s Finance Committee will meet an hour earlier at 6:00  :  Dennis Graves and Melinda Hunt join Bill Clow as the Board’s holdover members – Emily Blackford was re-elected – the newly elected members are Brian VanBlaricum, Shawn Rose, and Morgan Henton.

 

(OLNEY)  The investigation is continuing into an incident that took place this past Sunday night at approximately 9:57 at the Richland County Sheriff’s Office in Olney – it’s reported that an unidentified white female was arrested and transported to the County Jail, where she was being held in a holding cell while another person was being processed into the facility – unbeknown to Sheriff’s Office employees, the female removed an ace bandage from under her shirt sleeve that was wrapped around a wound on her arm and she applied the bandage around her neck – after this was discovered by Sheriff’s Office employees, aid was rendered to the female, who was unconscious and not breathing – she was transported to Richland Memorial Hospital and later transported to Good Samaritan Hospital in Vincennes for treatment.

 

(OLNEY)  The Richland County Highway Department is trimming brush along the road right-of-ways this week – motorists should be alert and avoid the following areas during normal working hours each day for the rest of this week  :  Elbow Lane in Decker Township, between Ridge Road and Higgin Switch Road  :  the Stringtown Road in both Claremont & German Townships, between Pleasant Ridge Lane and Mt. Gilead Lane  :  and Prairieton Road, north of U.S. Route 50, in both Claremont & German Townships.

 

(NEWTON)  The Illinois Student Assistance Commission (ISAC) has announced the names of the 2017-2018 Illinois State Scholars – this year’s recipients join the ranks of other exceptional Illinois high school students honored with this prestigious designation – the honorees are chosen based on a combination of exemplary ACT or SAT test scores and sixth semester class rank – of the more than 19,300 statewide students chosen, there are eight State Scholars from Newton Community High School – they include Tim Weber, Ariel Richards, Mitch Jansen, Grace Hartrich, Kristen Hardiek, Ben Britton, Mitch Bierman, and Faron Bartens – State Scholars rank in approximately the top ten percent of high school seniors from 765 high schools across Illinois – congratulations to one and all from Jasper County and Newton.

 

(OLNEY)  The Illinois Student Assistance Commission (ISAC) has announced the names of the 2017-2018 Illinois State Scholars – this year’s recipients join the ranks of other exceptional Illinois high school students honored with this prestigious designation – the honorees are chosen based on a combination of exemplary ACT or SAT test scores and sixth semester class rank – of the more than 19,300 statewide students chosen, there are ten State Scholars from Richland County High School – they include Maranda Wiese, Molly Walker, Connor Walker, Brooke Shoemaker, Stephanie Shan, Dalton Mitchell, Reid Edwards, Lauren Eagleson, Weston Deshon, and Kamara Barksdale-Smith – State Scholars rank in approximately the top ten percent of high school seniors from 765 high schools across Illinois – congratulations to one and all from Richland County and Olney’s Richland County High School.

 

(NEWTON)  The 2016 Holly Jolly Jasper County Christmas continues this weekend in Newton, the second of three consecutive Fridays celebrating the life of Jasper County native Burl Ives – this Friday is the annual Postmark Day at the Newton Post Office only from 8:30 to 5:00 thru the day – then Friday night from 5:00 to 7:00 there will be professional pictures with Santa, plus craft activities for children and a chance to decorate your own cookie – not to mention great shopping, cookies & hot chocolate, visits with Santa Claus & other Holly Jolly Characters, and more in downtown Newton – also register Friday night on the Square for prizes donated by area businesses with the drawing at Arndt’s – plus don’t forget about Breakfast with Santa at 10:30 Saturday morning at the St. Thomas Parish Center – also, receipts available for Chamber Bucks as well – for more details, find it all on Facebook, under Holly Jolly Jasper County Christmas.

 

(OLNEY)  The Illinois Department on Aging is reminding eligible older adults that the annual Medicare open enrollment period continues until tomorrow, December 7th – the Department on Aging offers free counseling assistance to help educate Medicare-eligible individuals & their caregivers about their Medicare insurance options available – it’s available thru the Senior Health Insurance Program (SHIP) – with over 300 SHIP offices throughout Illinois, eligible adults and their caregivers are encouraged to schedule an appointment – for details, check the IDOA website online, at  www.illinois.gov/aging/ship.

 

(NEWTON)  The Red Cross is asking all eligible and/or first-time donors to get out & give blood at their next opportunity – upcoming blood drives  :  tomorrow at the Blood Donation Center in Effingham from 11:30 to 6:00  :  also tomorrow at the Patoka High School from 9:00 to 2:00  :  Thursday at the KC Hall in Newton from 1:00 to 6:00  :  all blood types and platelets are needed to help replenish the low area supplies.

 

(OLNEY)  The 2016 Rotary Radio Auction is this coming Saturday morning on Freedom 92.9 WSEI – it’s from 9:00 to 12:00 noon and features hundreds of items available for purchase – all the proceeds will be used for the Good Samaritan and for Rotary Scholarships at both Olney Central College & Richland County High School – you can view the list of 105 items up for auction on our Freedom 92.9 website, click on the "Community" tab at www.freedom929.com - for more details, like the Olney Rotary Club on Facebook.

 

REMINDERS  :
    The Dodransbicentennial Commission has for sale the 175th Anniversary banners that were displayed in Olney in 2016 – priced at $20 each, the banners are available at Olney City Hall – first come, first serve


    The Richland Heritage Museum Board invites the public to a Christmas Open House at the Heritage House this Sunday from 1:00 to 4:00 – at the corner of Kitchell Avenue & Elm Street in Olney – also tour the Mcsburg One-Room School House – includes local musical entertainment and refreshments


    The Jasper County Junior High Band and 5th & 6th Grade Band students will host a “Parents Night Out” this Saturday night from 5:00 to 9:00 – children ages 3 years old thru 6th grade can be dropped off at the Junior High School in Newton and spend a Holly Jolly evening with the Band, Band-Aide members, and teachers – includes age-appropriate games, crafts, movies, and snacks – cost at only $10 per child – all the proceeds to benefit the Junior High Band students and programs in grades 5th thru 8th – call  217-683-2369


    The Olney Public Library will host a Santa Make It / Take It Workshop this Saturday afternoon, starting at 2:00 – it will be free craft time for all ages at the Olney Public Library this Saturday – check it out


   The OCC Music Department has its Fall Recital at 8:00 tonight in the Dr. John D. Stull Performing Arts Center, on Ruth Henry Stage – the program will feature vocal and instrumental solos – admission is free


    The Olney Christmas Lights Display will be clicked on this evening at 5:00 – the Lights Display in the Olney City Park will be on each night now thru December 31st for the public’s viewing

 

 

 

December 5, 2016

 

(OLNEY)  With a high pressure ridge overhead, we’ll see a dry sky today, although some clouds will hang around, but all that changes with an approaching cold front – rain develops late tonight, continuing thru tomorrow morning before ending – then the surge of colder Arctic air moves into our area Wednesday thru Thursday – possibly rain or snow Wednesday night – then dry & cold into the weekend – listen for updates.

 

(NEWTON)  In state news – Illinois legislative leaders made little, if any, progress in the latest weekend meeting in Springfield despite new financial calculations after the election of Donald Trump – the State Democratic leaders believe possible changes to subsidized health care could affect Illinois’ budget and they need to be factored into the discussion – Republican leaders say the new issue is more of the same, a tactic to delay a decision – this all comes after no progress Saturday – meetings are planned through December.

 

(OLNEY)  The Illinois State Police announce that the 2016 Thanksgiving holiday travel period experienced the lowest fatality rate since 2011 – during the 5-day period, Wednesday thru Sunday, there were 3 crashes in Illinois that involved 3 fatalities – that’s compares to year ago, when 17 people died in 15 wrecks – also during the 5-day period this year, there were 6,473 total citations issued by Troopers, 3,732 for speeding and 120 DUI’s – a total of 381 crashes were handled this past Thanksgiving holiday period in Illinois.

 

(OLNEY)  Last month was the 5th warmest November on record for Illinois, according to the Illinois State Water Survey, based in Champaign  :  the statewide average temperature in November was 47.4 degrees, 4.9 degrees above normal – the warmest November in Illinois was in 2001 with an average temperature at 49.9 degrees  :  this year also had the 2nd warmest fall (September, October, & November) on record in Illinois – the statewide average fall temperature was 59.4 degrees, which was 5 degrees above normal – only the fall of 1931 was warmer at 59.8 degrees  :  the statewide average precipitation for November was 2.51 inches, nearly a full inch (0.96 inches) below normal – most of the state had below normal rainfall with the driest spots in southern and western Illinois  :  the state’s average precipitation for fall was 8.20 inches, 1.74 inches below normal – although dry, it was far from setting a record – the driest fall on record was in 1953 with only 3.93 inches of rainfall  :  all statistics provided by the Illinois State Water Survey.

 

(NEWTON)  The Jasper County Board met in special session last Thursday afternoon, mostly for its re-organization after the November 8th election – Judge Dan Hartigan was on hand to swear in re-elected Jasper County Coroner Jason Meyer, re-elected Board member Ron Swick, and newly elected Board members A.C. Pickens, Mike Hall, Doug Weddell, and Gary Michl – re-elected State’s Attorney Chad Miller, re-elected Circuit Clerk Jamie Blake, and newly elected Board member Jason Warfel were sworn in earlier – also attending were other holdover Board members Jeff Smithenry, Danny Kerner, Brian Leffler, Angela Fehrenbacher, Ron Heltsley, and Don Hickox  :  on a 7 to 5 ballot vote, the Board elected Ron Heltsley as the next Jasper County Board Chairman for a two year period  :  the Board elected Brian Leffler as it’s Vice Chairman  :  the Board agreed to continue meeting on the second Thursdays of each month  :  the Board approved the Sheriff’s Union Contract, a four year agreement that began last Thursday, December 1st  :  and the Board agreed to have the County’s Christmas Lunch on December 12th  :  the next regular monthly meeting for the Jasper County Board will be Thursday night, December 15th, in Newton.

 

(OLNEY)  The Richland County Board will have its re-organizational meeting this evening at 5:00 in the County Jail meeting room – a new Chairperson and Vice-Chair will be elected, plus a closed session to discuss negotiations  :  the Board’s regular monthly meeting for December is also this week, on Thursday, December 8th, at 7:00, in the meeting room – the Board’s Finance Committee will meet earlier at 6:00.

 

(NEWTON)  The Jasper County Board of Review began its duties for the 2016 assessment year back on November 18th – complaints must be filed or postmarked on or before December 17th (a week from this coming Saturday) in the Jasper County Office Building, at 204 West Washington Street, in Newton – office hours are 9:00 to 12:00 each morning, Monday thru Friday, or each weekday afternoon by appointment.

 

(OLNEY)  During the Illinois Farm Bureau Annual Meeting currently being held in Chicago, the Illinois Farm Bureau Young Leader Committee elected its 2016-2017 committee members this past weekend, although those elected must be confirmed by the IFB voting delegates later today – among the committee members elected is Secretary Ashley Paddock of Richland County – others include Chairman Marc Bremer of Massac County, Vice-Chair Kimberly May of Christian County, and Achievement Subcommittee Chair Reid Thompson of Champaign County – members of the IFB Young Leaders are 18 to 35 year old men and women who want to promote agriculture and competition in local and statewide activities and much more.

 

(OLNEY)  Also at the Illinois Farm Bureau Annual Meeting in Chicago, it was this past Saturday that the 2016 Illinois Agriculture in the Classroom Volunteer of the Year awards were presented – one of the three awards went to Bryan Roosevelt of Edwards County – as a former Edwards County Farm Bureau president, Roosevelt was instrumental in starting the Agriculture in the Classroom program in the Edwards County schools, plus he served as a classroom presenter, helped local FFA members, and much more – others noted were Janet Noe of Woodford County and the Glenn & Todd Wright families of Bureau County.

 

(OLNEY)  Another downstate resident was also recognized at the Illinois Farm Bureau Annual Meeting in Chicago this past Saturday – G. Kelly Robertson, of Benton, in Franklin County, received the 2016 Illinois Certified Crop Advisor Award – the recognition is designed to increase awareness that farmers and their crop advisors strive to make economically and environmentally sound cropping decisions – with 28 years of experience, Robertson’s company works with local customers with over 50,000 acres of farmland included.

 

(NEWTON/OLNEY)  The USDA Farm Service Agency has announced that the deadline to submit ballots for the 2016 County Committee Elections has been extended to ensure farmers have sufficient time to vote – eligible voters now have until December 13th, a week from tomorrow, to return ballots to their local FSA office – the newly elected committee members will still take up their positions on January 1st, 2017.

 

(OLNEY)  The Olney Central College Theater will host auditions for Disney’s “The Little Mermaid” this coming Sunday afternoon at 2:00 and next Monday night at 7:00, in the Dr. John D. Stull Performing Arts Center at OCC – those auditioning will be required to give a reading from the script, plus sing from memory any Broadway musical song – a character list and audition cuts for prepared readings are available online at www.iecc.edu/occtheater  – college & high school students and adults can audition, plus parts also available for one boy between the ages of 6 and 10 – there are three parts available for tap dancers who must perform a dance at their audition – the performances are the last weekend in March and the first weekend in April.

 

(OLNEY)  The Red Cross is asking all eligible and/or first-time donors to get out & give blood at their next opportunity – upcoming blood drives  :  Wednesday at the Blood Donation Center in Effingham from 11:30 to 6:00  :  also Wednesday at the Patoka High School from 9:00 to 2:00  :  Thursday at the KC Hall in Newton from 1:00 to 6:00  :  all blood types and platelets are needed to help replenish the low area supplies.

 

REMINDERS  :
    The Holy Cross Catholic Church in Wendelin will host its annual “Advent Evensong” this Sunday at 4:00 – a candlelight service with scripture, English carols, and Austrian Christmas music, all sung in German, by the Wendelin Kloepfen Singers – refreshments afterwards – all in memory of Father David Braun


    The Richland Heritage Museum Board invites the public to a Christmas Open House at the Heritage House this Sunday from 1:00 to 4:00 – at the corner of Kitchell Avenue & Elm Street in Olney – also tour the Mcsburg One-Room School House – includes local musical entertainment and refreshments


    The Beulah United Methodist Church has its 25th annual “Travel Back to Bethlehem” nativity scene this Saturday night from 5:30 to 8:30 with free refreshments in the Fellowship Hall – also collecting food items or cash donations to help those in need – drive south of Sumner and follow the luminaries to the church


    It’s a Holly Jolly Craft Show this Saturday from 11:00 to 3:00 in the Knights of Columbus Hall in Newton with over 25 vendors taking part – items available include bracelets, jewelry, candies, wine, soaps, wreaths, metal works, books, tupperware, & more – door prizes and cash & carry – lunch will be served


    The OCC Music Department has its Fall Recital at 8:00 tomorrow night in the Dr. John D. Stull Performing Arts Center – the program will feature vocal & instrumental solos – admission is free


    The Olney Quilt Guild will have its regular monthly meeting tonight at the Trinity Lutheran Church in Olney, starting at 7:00 – the program is the Guild’s Christmas Party – all members are urged to attend


    The Olney Christmas Lights Display will be clicked on this evening at 5:00 – the Lights Display in the Olney City Park will be on each night now thru December 31st for the public’s viewing

 

 

 

December 3, 2016

 

(OLNEY)  As an approaching upper level disturbance moves into the Midwest, we’ll see plenty of clouds this weekend with rain chances developing late tonight thru tomorrow morning, maybe mixed with a few flurries before the light rain ends later in the day tomorrow – then dry Monday before more rain that night and Tuesday – then our coldest air so far this late fall moving in later next week – stay tuned for updates.

 

(OLNEY)  In state news – The Illinois Department on Aging is reminding eligible older adults that the annual Medicare open enrollment period continues until next Wednesday, December 7th – the Department on Aging offers free counseling assistance to help educate Medicare-eligible individuals & their caregivers about their Medicare insurance options available – it’s available thru the Senior Health Insurance Program (SHIP) – with over 300 SHIP offices throughout Illinois, eligible adults and their caregivers are encouraged to schedule an appointment – for details, check the IDOA website online, at  www.illinois.gov/aging/ship.

 

(OLNEY/NEWTON)  The USDA Farm Service Agency has announced that the deadline to submit ballots for the 2016 County Committee Elections has been extended to ensure farmers have sufficient time to vote – eligible voters now have until December 13th, a week from next Tuesday, to return ballots to their local FSA office – the newly elected committee members will still take up their positions on January 1st, 2017.

 

(NEWTON)  The 2016 Indiana Rail Road Company’s Santa Train continues with its stops this weekend in Illinois and Indiana – the three stops five Indiana stops today, the final four stops tomorrow includes three in our region of Illinois – in Newton tomorrow morning from 9:00 to 10:00, then in Oblong from 11:15 to 12:15, and in Palestine from 1:30 to 2:30 – children of all ages are invited to climb aboard and visit Santa.

 

(OLNEY)  The Red Cross is asking all eligible and/or first-time donors to get out & give blood at their next opportunity – upcoming blood drives  :  tomorrow morning at the Holy Cross Parish Hall in Wendelin from 8:00 to 12:00 noon  :  then next Wednesday at the Blood Donation Center in Effingham from 11:30 to 6:00  :  all blood types and platelets are very much needed to help replenish the low regional blood supplies.

 

REMINDERS  :
    The OCC Music Department has its Fall Recital at 8:00 next Tuesday night in the Dr. John D. Stull Performing Arts Center – the program will feature vocal & instrumental solos – admission is free


    The Olney Quilt Guild will have its regular monthly meeting next Monday night, December 5th, at the Trinity Lutheran Church in Olney, starting at 7:00 – the program is the Guild’s Christmas Party


    The St. Isidore “Christmas Walk” is tomorrow in Dieterich – at the Immaculate Conception Hall from 12:30 to 5:30 and at the Beehive Beauty Boutique from 1:00 to 4:30 – special gifts, a holiday raffle, a visit from Santa with pictures, refreshments, and more – tickets in advance from area banks or at the door


    The F.A.C.E. and Fine Arts of Effingham County Christmas Concert is tomorrow at the Cornerstone Christian Church in Effingham – starting at 2:00, admission is free – donations of canned goods accepted


    A free seminar entitled “GriefShare : Surviving the Holidays” is this afternoon from 3:00 to 5:00 in Olney – it’s for those facing the holidays after the death of a loved one – to register or to get more information, contact the Elm Street Christian Church in Olney by calling  618-395-8411  – all are invited


    Santa Claus will visit Lincoln Trail College near Robinson during the annual Santa Day event this afternoon from 1:00 to 4:00 in the Student Union – area children can enjoy free seasonal games, activities, & craft projects – plus they can visit with Santa Claus in the LTC Library with pictures available


    The Hospice of Southeastern Illinois “Cookie Walk & Festival of Trees” is this morning from 8:30 to 11:30 at the Trinity Lutheran Church in Olney – holiday cookies & candies, holiday wreaths, & more


    The next Jasper County paper drive is this morning from now until 12:00 noon at the Schackmann Insulation Building on South Van Buren Street in Newton – no glossy paper accepted & no early drop off’s


    The Parkersburg Community Club has its annual pancake & sausage breakfast this morning with serving from now until 11:00 – it’s all-you-can-eat at the Community Building – all to support community projects


    The Olney Public Library continues with its Local Author Showcase this afternoon from 1:00 to 4:00 – authors from Richland & surrounding counties will display their published books for sale


    The Olney Christmas Lights Display will be clicked on this evening at 5:00 – the Lights Display in the Olney City Park will be on each night now thru December 31st for the public’s viewing