LOCAL NEWS

Local News

August 30, 2016

 

(OLNEY)  A surface high pressure ridge over Northern Illinois will slowly slide southward with showers & thunderstorms possible for our region, that’s after another hot & humid afternoon – then more of the same type of conditions tomorrow before the front moves thru & a Canadian high pressure brings us cooler & less humid air for the holiday weekend ahead – no rain chances until midweek next week – listen for updates.

 

(NEWTON)  In state news – Illinois election officials are confident no voter data was compromised this summer when a hacker was able to see information on about 200,000 registered voters – in fact, the state’s online voter-registration system was completely shut down on July 13th when officials noted an unusually high amount of traffic – the security was then improved – while the FBI warned state officials to boost their security further, the state says it will notify each voter affected after a complete accounting is completed.

 

(NEWTON)  Governor Bruce Rauner has vetoed measures that would increase wages for workers who care for those with developmental disabilities & that would expand a child care program for low-income families – the Governor says there’s not enough state money to support the proposals – Rauner also vetoed a bill that would have expanded eligibility requirements for low-income families to receive child care in the future.

 

(OLNEY)  The Du Quoin State Fair continues as today is Democrat Day with various activities, including an all day picnic, the horsemanship drill team performance, and tonight Kellie Pickler & Amelia Eisenhauer in concert – tomorrow is Senior Day when those age 60 & older will be admitted free with more activities and Peter Noone on stage with Herman’s Hermits – Thursday is Illinois Tourism Day with Aaron Lewis & Pat Green in concert that night – the fair continues thru Labor Day – go online at www.duquoinstatefair.net.

 

(OLNEY)  The Richland County Sheriff’s Department has announced there is a telephone outage affecting landline services with the 442 exchange prefix – at this time landlines with the 442 exchange are unable to call the 9-1-1 emergency system – in the event of an emergency, the 9-1-1 service is available by using a cellular phone – officials with Frontier Communications say they are working to restore the services as soon as possible – this information should be shared with all family and friends – your patience is appreciated.

 

(OLNEY/NEWTON)  Illinois State Treasurer Michael Frerichs is making several downstate stops this week, including visits to Richland County and Jasper County on this Tuesday – the Treasurer will be at the Olney Chamber of Commerce office from 11:00 to 12:00 noon late this morning as he’ll be speaking about the variety of programs offered thru the Treasurer’s office, such as Ag Invest, I-Cash, Bright Start, Illinois Growth & Innovation Fund, E-Pay, Illinois Funds, and more – the Treasurer will also be listening to local concerns of those attending – he’ll be visiting the new Jasper County Chamber of Commerce office along South Van Buren Street in Newton this afternoon from 3:00 to 4:00 – the visits are free and all are invited.

 

(OLNEY)  The Richland County Farm Bureau weekly rainfall report is out, showing the amount of rain that fell in a seven day period that ended at 8:00 yesterday morning, although nearly all the rain that fell came over the weekend – the largest amount of rain was an inch and four tenths (1.40) in German Township, followed by an inch and two tenths (1.20) in Claremont Township, an inch and a tenth (1.10) in Bonpas Township, and seven tenths of an inch (0.70) in Madison Township – then three tenths of an inch (0.30) in both Olney and Preston Townships, a tenth of an inch (0.10) in Denver Township, and no rain at all in both Decker and Noble Townships – here at our WVLN-WSEI Weather Station, at the south edge of Olney, we recorded only six hundredths of an inch of rain (0.06) during the seven day period – the average rainfall in Richland County is nearly even with a year ago – so far in 2016, the average as of yesterday is 27.34 inches, that’s nine hundredths of an inch (0.09) less than a year ago when the county’s average was 27.43 inches.

 

(NEWTON)  In yesterday’s USDA Crop Report – statewide farmers are getting their equipment ready for the upcoming fall harvest – the state’s average temperature last week was 74.5 degrees, nearly one full degree (0.9) above normal – the statewide average rainfall last week was 1.31 inches, just over a half inch (0.54) above normal – as of Sunday, the state’s corn and soybean development was pretty much the same at this time a year ago  :  farmers in our ten county area report over 90% of the local corn crop is in the dough stage with nearly three quarters of the corn now denting and around 10% of the corn now mature – nearly 95% of the local bean crop is setting pods while less than 5% of the beans are starting to turn color and mature – as the fall harvest is fast approaching, farmers are reminded to continue thinking “safety first”.

 

(OLNEY)  A local donation effort is continuing this week to help the hundreds of flood victims down in Louisiana and other southern states – items can be dropped off at the Elm Street Christian Church in Olney as the church office is open from 8:00 to 5:00 each day, although closed for lunch from 12 noon until 1:00 – all items will go to the Helping His Hands Disaster Response, with the warehouse, food pantry, and more based in Vincennes – all items will be collected thru this coming Thursday – donors can help out by pledging different types of kits, including disaster, school supplies, clothing, and much more – for more information on how to help out, area folks can check the website online, at  www.helpinghishands.com.

 

(OLNEY)  The Illinois State Police and hundreds of local law enforcement agencies are gearing up for a busy holiday weekend – it’s all part of another “Click It or Ticket” initiative with added saturation patrols, roadside safety checks, and much more – all looking for those driving impaired by alcohol and/or drugs, plus those driving not buckled up or texting – the enforcement runs this weekend thru the first of next week.

 

(NEWTON)  The nation’s greatest agriculture showcase starts today – the 2016 Farm Progress Show is today, tomorrow, and Thursday, up in Boone, Iowa – showcasing the latest technology in agriculture, the annual event features field demonstrations, the popular Ride ‘n Drives program, plenty of displays, live exhibits, concessions, & more – that’s from 8:00 to 5:00 today and tomorrow, and from 8:00 to 4:00 on Thursday – for more information and details, check the website online at  www.farmprogressshow.com.

 

(OLNEY)  Republic Services would like to remind the citizens of Olney to please refrain from placing any yard waste in their trash totes, since yard waste is not permitted in the landfill where Republic delivers to – Olney residents are urged to use the City of Olney’s landscape waste facility, which is free of any charge – Olney’s brush dump is open from 10:00 to 4:00 each day on Mondays, Thursdays, Fridays, and Saturdays.

 

(OLNEY)  With an Emergency Appeal still in place, the Red Cross is asking all eligible and/or first-time donors to get out & give blood – here’s some upcoming area blood drives  :  tomorrow at Olney Central College from 8:00 to 1:00  :  also tomorrow at the Blood Donation Center on Eden Avenue in Effingham from 11:30 to 6:00  :  all blood types and platelets are very much needed to replenish the low area supply.

 

REMINDERS  :
    The Flora Public Library will host a book signing by a local author this coming Saturday afternoon from 12:00 to 3:00 – Angela Conrad, who has two young sons diagnosed with Autism, will be signing and selling her book entitled “Two Brothers, One Journey : the Loving, Lonely Struggles of an Autism Mom”


    The annual Elm River Chowder is this coming Saturday, located on chowder grounds near the banks of the Elm River about six miles south of Clay City, or west & south of Zif – the serving will start at around 12 noon – also barbeque, pork burgers, drinks, & desserts – plus live music, door prizes, and a 50/50 drawing


    The American Legion Post #20 in Newton will have its monthly “pork loin dinner” this Thursday night with serving at 6:00 – the public’s invited – it’s on Thursday due to next Monday being Labor Day 2016


    The regional ERBA offices will begin accepting applications for the LIHEAP program this Thursday for households with members age 60 or older and for those receiving disability – contact the respective ERBA office for an appointment & more details – in Olney, call  395-2714  – in Newton, call  783-3987  – other offices in Robinson, Lawrenceville, Martinsville, Greenup, Paris, Charleston, and Tuscola


    The RMH Auxiliary will have a Longaberger Special One Day Sale tomorrow in the Heim Room at RMH from 9:00 to 3:00, featuring fall & Halloween items – proceeds go to Auxiliary projects at RMH


    The Pink Warrior Sisters Support Group will have its monthly meeting tonight at Monical’s Pizza in Olney, beginning at 6:00 – anyone is welcome to attend the support group meeting


    The City of Olney’s Fire Pension Board will meet this (Tuesday) morning at the Olney Fire Station on North Walnut Street, starting at 9:00 – the meeting is open to the public

 

 

 

August 29, 2016

 

(OLNEY)  Today will be another day with warm & humid air over our downstate area with a weak frontal boundary hanging overhead nearby – that means a chance of another evening thunderstorm or two with the conditions continuing tomorrow thru Wednesday – then a cold front brings us drier and cooler air with a Canadian high pressure to keep us rain-free thru most of the upcoming weekend – listen for updates.

 

(OLNEY)  While no warnings were issued last evening weather-wise, a massive thunderstorm hit our region with some heavy rainfall, dangerous lightning, & some hail – the storm started to develop south / southeast of Olney, then started its very slow movement northward thru Richland, Lawrence, Jasper, and Crawford Counties – although the storm missed the majority of Olney, it did hit Dundas, Sumner, Chauncey, Oblong, Ste. Marie, Newton, Robinson, & elsewhere – rainfall amounts varied from 1 to as much as 5 inches in some spots, plus pea to nickel sized hail was included – there was some damage reported, but no injuries.

 

(NEWTON)  In state news – Illinois’ efforts to relocate existing emergency response communications systems in preparation for the Nationwide Public Safety Broadland Network got a financial boost recently with a grant totaling more than $14 million from the First Responder Network Authority – the award to IEMA was more than half of the $26.8 million FirstNet awarded to eight recipients nationwide – other recipients were entities in Virginia, Arkansas, Massachusetts, Hawaii, Michigan, Connecticut, and Idaho.

 

(NEWTON)  Homes sold faster and prices were stronger in July, but lower inventory continues to act as a drag on the market, according to Illinois Realtors – statewide home sales last month totaled 16,108, that’s down 6.8% from July a year ago – the statewide median price in July was $199,000 which is up 4.7% from a year ago in 2015 – however, the available housing inventory of homes for sale in July was down 14.4% from last year – the data shows 33 Illinois counties reported home sale gains for July 2016 over a year ago.

 

(OLNEY)  The Du Quoin State Fair continues down in Perry County as today is Agriculture Youth Day – a day that Illinois’ number one industry is recognized along with the young agricultural exhibitors from all of the downstate region – tonight’s grandstand concert features Cinderella’s Tom Keifer & Sebastian Bach – tomorrow is Democrat Day with various activities - then Kellie Pickler & Amelia Eisenhauer in concert tomorrow night – Wednesday is Senior Day when those age 60 & older will be admitted free with Herman’s Hermits, starring Peter Noone, is on stage – the fair continues thru Labor Day –  www.duquoinstatefair.net.

 

(NEWTON)  The investigation continues into a single vehicle crash that occurred on U.S. Route 40 in Effingham, just west of the Effingham Country Club, at 3:43 yesterday (Sunday) afternoon – the State Police report 66 year old Phyllis C. Voyles of Shelbyville was westbound on Route 40 when her Harley Davidson motorcycle crossed lanes, ran off the road, and came to rest near the ditch of a county road – Voyles was taken to St. Anthony’s Memorial Hospital – she was ticketed for improper lane usage.

 

(OLNEY)  Illinois State Treasurer Michael Frerichs is making several downstate stops this week, including a visit to Richland County – the Treasurer will be at the Olney Chamber of Commerce office from 11:00 to 12:00 noon late tomorrow morning – space is limited, if folks would like to attend, RSVP’s are requested by the Chamber office or emailing at  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.  – Treasurer Frerichs will be speaking about the variety of programs offered thru the Treasurer’s office, such as Ag Invest, I-Cash, Bright Start, Illinois Growth & Innovation Fund, E-Pay, Illinois Funds, and more – the Treasurer will also be listening to local concerns of those attending as well – he’ll also be visiting the new Jasper County Chamber of Commerce office along South Van Buren Street in Newton tomorrow afternoon from 3:00 to 4:00 – the visits are free – the Treasurer is today holding a public hearing at John A. Logan College in Carterville, trying to educate the public on the questionable practice of some life insurance companies not paying death benefits & more.

 

(OLNEY)  The City of Olney Tree Board met on Wednesday night last week – the Board  :  approved the application for Ryan and April Lenear at 1803 Sterchi Drive for the City’s new Street Tree Replacement Program with the request to plant two trees at the site – the approval is contingent upon the future findings of  J.U.L.I.E.  :  heard an update on the progress of Donnie Watson and his Eagle Scout Project, noting that at least $5,500 had been donated so far towards the tree planting project – the planting is expected to start soon with fall weather approaching  :  accepted a donation from Wal-Mart to the City’s Tree Identification Park being developed in Musgrove Park  :  all Tree Board recommendations go to the Olney City Council for its consideration  :  the City of Olney’s Tree Board will have its next meeting on September 22nd.

 

(OLNEY)  Marion County authorities are continuing their investigation into a house explosion that occurred last Friday afternoon in Odin that killed one person and injured another – the State’s Fire Marshall’s Office, along with several other agencies, were on the scene over the weekend, trying to determine the cause of the explosion, which totally leveled the home – pronounced dead at the scene was 84 year old Doris Wood – her husband, 85 year old Earl Wood was taken to a St. Louis hospital, where he is expected to recover.

 

(OLNEY)  Republic Services would like to remind the citizens of Olney to please refrain from placing any yard waste in their trash totes, since yard waste is not permitted in the landfill where Republic delivers to – Olney residents are urged to use the City of Olney’s landscape waste facility, which is free of any charge – Olney’s brush dump is open from 10:00 to 4:00 each day on Mondays, Thursdays, Fridays, and Saturdays.

 

(NEWTON)  The nation’s greatest agriculture showcase is this week – the 2016 Farm Progress Show will be held tomorrow, Wednesday, and Thursday, on its permanent show site in Boone, Iowa – showcasing the latest technology in agriculture, the staple of the annual event is field demonstrations and this year is no exception as the combines & tractors will fire up each morning at 11:00 – tillage tools & other special machines will operate each day from 2:00 to 3:00, plus visitors can test drive new trucks, ATV’s, & more thur the popular Ride ‘n Drives – there’ll be plenty of displays, concessions, & more – that’s from 8:00 to 5:00 tomorrow & Wednesday, from 8:00 to 4:00 Thursday – logon at  www.farmprogressshow.com.

 

(OLNEY)  The annual Berryville Chowder is coming up this Saturday, the 70th anniversary of the event held in southeastern Richland County – the serving will start at 11:00 in the morning with bulk sales outside under the cooking shelter and by the bowl inside the air-conditioned Community Center – plus hamburgers, fish, drinks, and plenty of desserts – also a free bounce house, music with the local Thinga-Ma-Jug Band, and 70th anniversary commemorative t-shirts for sale – help will also be available to carry the chowder to a vehicle, if needed – everyone’s invited – check the Berryville Community Center Facebook page for more.

 

(NEWTON)  With an Emergency Appeal still in place, the Red Cross is asking all eligible and/or first-time donors to get out & give blood – here’s some upcoming area blood drives  :  today at Kaskaskia College west of Centralia from 10:00 to 3:00  :  today at the Fayette County Hospital in Vandalia from 12:30 to 4:30  :  also today at the Community Building in Stewardson from 2:00 to 6:00  :  on Wednesday at Olney Central College from 8:00 to 1:00  :  also Wednesday at the Blood Donation Center on Eden Avenue in Effingham from 11:30 to 6:00  :  all blood types and platelets are very much needed to replenish the low area supply.

 

REMINDERS  :
    The Silk Purse Thrift Store, in the former Samuel Music Building on West Fayette Avenue in Effingham, has its first annual Customer Appreciation Day this coming Saturday with door prizes every hour, plus free hot dogs & drinks from 11:00 until sold out – next week, September 6th thru 10th, is Donor Appreciation Week, when each donations will get a small treat & chance to win a door prize – call  217-342-3319


    The American Legion Post #20 in Newton will have its monthly “pork loin dinner” this Thursday night with serving at 6:00 – the public’s invited – it’s on Thursday due to next Monday being Labor Day 2016


    The RMH Auxiliary will have a Longaberger Special One Day Sale this Wednesday in the Heim Room at RMH from 9:00 to 3:00, featuring fall & Halloween items – proceeds go to Auxiliary projects at RMH


    The Pink Warrior Sisters Support Group will have its monthly meeting tomorrow night at Monical’s Pizza in Olney, beginning at 6:00 – anyone is welcome to attend the support group meeting

 

 

 

August 27, 2016

 

(OLNEY)  With a warm front to our north and an approaching upper level low, we’ll see more slight chances of rain or thunderstorm activity thru today, tonight, and tomorrow – after the rain threat ends Sunday night, we’ll see a mostly dry work week next week, with less humidity – stay tuned for updates.

 

(NEWTON)  In state news – the Du Quoin State Fair began last night – today is Governor’s Day on the fairgrounds with harness racing, various livestock shows, and in concert tonight, it’s Sara Evans with Thompson Square – tomorrow is Veterans Day with free admission for Veterans & their immediate family members – plus more harness racing & on stage Christian rock band “Skillet” – next Monday is Agriculture Youth Day – the fair continues thru Labor Day – for more information, logon at  www.duquoinstatefair.net.

 

(OLNEY)  Some reminders for area sportsmen and sportswomen  :  the 2016-2017 hunting seasons in Illinois are fast approaching – IDNR Hunter Safety Education courses are available in the weeks ahead and a list of statewide courses are listed on the DNR website  :  also, statewide wing shooting clinics are scheduled over the next few weeks for youth ages 10 to 15 and for women – the list of clinics are on the DNR website  :  for more on these and all other things in Illinois, go online at  www.dnr.illinois.gov.

 

(NEWTON)  It’s the 2016 Willow Hill Annual Homecoming today with all proceeds going for Edison Park improvements – registration for a Car & Bike Show is from 9:00 to 11:00 this morning, plus the Antique Tractor Show registration starts at 10:00 – also a pedal tractor pull, greased pig wrestling, bingo, a flea market, cake walk, & more – the serving of pulled pork & nachos starts at 11:00, then pork burgers and more in the evening – the Thinga-Ma Jug Band at 3:00 and raffle drawing at 5:00 – all are invited to attend.

 

(OLNEY)  The Richland County Farm Bureau Young Leaders will host their 5th Annual Trap Shoot today at the County Line Gun Club, west of Noble – the registration begins at 9:00 this morning with the shooting at 10:00 – the individual fee is $25, with the five member team registration at $125 – concessions available for lunch, plus a raffle drawing to win a Bushmaster .223/5.56 rifle – all are invited to check it out.

 

REMINDERS  :

    Jasper County’s own Bob Story will be live in concert tomorrow night, at the Grace United Methodist Church in Newton, beginning at 6:00 – a time of fellowship will follow, with ice cream sundaes available

    The next area blood drive is tomorrow morning at the St. Joseph Parish Center in Stringtown, from 7:30 to 11:30 – remember, all blood types and platelets are very much needed to replenish low regional supplies

    The First Assembly Church in Olney has a “free comedy date night” to celebrate marriage thru laughter tonight at 6:00 – free child care for those in 6th grade & under – logon at  www.olneyag.com

    The Claremont Chowder is today in the air-conditioned Community Center – with serving at 4:00, it’s chowder by the bowl or bulk until sold out, plus beef barbeque, fish, pies, cakes, and more – all are invited

    The White Squirrel Saddle Club has a fundraising cookout today at the Olney IGA – hot dogs, brats, pork burgers, chips, & drinks served from 10:00 to 1:00 – proceeds for the Club’s various projects

    Over in Clay County, the Xenia Firemen’s fish fry & dance is today behind the old Grade School – features the big mud bog at 11:00, a flea market & more – a noon registration for the road rally/motorcycle run, plus lazer tag, a washer tournament, petting zoo, games, entertainment, & plenty of food thru the night

    The Thunder Run & Raffle to support POW/MIA Awareness has registration from 8:30 to 9:45 this morning at the Olney VFW – the kick stands go up at 10:00 – the 180 mile ride includes lunch at The Keys on Carlyle Lake – then back to the Olney VFW tonight for a dinner, auction, and raffle drawing

    The Historic Sailor Springs Foundation has a country breakfast this morning with serving from 8:00 to 10:00 in the Foundation Building – $6 tickets at the door – carry-outs available – all ages welcome

     The Master’s Hands, in the former Ty’s Family Buffet Building on West Main Street in Olney, has an Indoor Garage Sale continuing – that’s today from now until 2:00 this afternoon 

 

 

August 26, 2016

 

(OLNEY)  With the stationary frontal boundary hanging along the I-70 corridor, most of the morning rain & storm activity will stay to our north, and as the front shifts further northward today thru tonight, most of us will stay dry to the south, although there is a slight chance of some isolated rains here or there – another upper level low could bring us rain tomorrow thru tomorrow – dry & cooler next week – listen for updates.

 

(NEWTON)  In state news – the Illinois Supreme Court has ruled a voter referendum looking to change the system Illinois uses to draw political boundaries is “unconstitutional”, therefore meaning it cannot appear on the November ballot – yesterday’s ruling affirms a Cook County judge’s decision made earlier, not to mention a county judge’s rejection of a similar effort two years ago in 2014 – a bipartisan group was wanting an 11-member commission to do the work instead of the political party currently in power.

 

(NEWTON)  Governor Bruce Rauner has signed legislation to impose longer prison terms for those convicted of trafficking guns into Illinois – the new law brings with it a 4 to 20 year sentence for a first conviction – a subsequent offense would be punishable by up to 30 years – a recent report showed that nearly 60% of the guns in Chicago are traced to neighboring states where it’s easier to purchase guns.

 

(OLNEY)  The Du Quoin State Fair begins this evening with the Twilight Parade at 6:00, although a High School Marching Band Contest is this afternoon – tomorrow is Governor’s Day with harness racing, various livestock shows, and in concert tomorrow night is Sara Evans with Thompson Square – Sunday is Veterans Day with free admission for Veterans & their immediate family members – there’s more harness racing and on stage will be Christian rock band “Skillet” – next Monday is Agriculture Youth Day – the fair continues thru the following Monday, Labor Day, September 5th – for more, logon at  www.duquoinstatefair.net.

 

(NEWTON)  A Richland County woman was arrested and charged on various counts earlier this week – it was Monday that 21 year old Misty D. Henson was arrested in rural Jasper County and charged with DUI – once in custody, Henson kicked and spat on Deputies, therefore she was charged with three separate counts of aggravated battery to a police officer – the Class 2 Felony charges carry a maximum sentencing range of 3 to 7 years in state prison – Henson allegedly was also in possession of Oxycodone, therefore charged with possession of a controlled substance without a prescription – Henson’s bond is $150,000 – State’s Attorney Chad Miller commended the professional way in which the Jasper County law enforcement officers handled the situation – remember, all individuals are presumed innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.

 

(OLNEY)  In a special presentation made yesterday morning, the Illinois Manufacturers’ Association Education Foundation awarded the Illinois Eastern Community Colleges $25,000 in scholarship funds for meeting a series of set standards and performing at a high level of active engagement to foster greater educational opportunities within the field of manufacturing – the IECC is now one of only three institutions across the state to receive such an honor from the IMA Education Foundation – the current manufacturing programs offered at the four IECC campuses in Olney, Mt. Carmel, Fairfield, and near Robinson cover several vocational aspects of the industry, including industrial maintenance technology, welding & cutting, process technology, and advanced manufacturing – the presentation was made at Olney Central College.

 

(NEWTON)  The Jasper County Health Department is still continuing its surveillance efforts concerning dead birds as related to the West Nile Virus – since dead birds are an important indicator for early West Nile Virus activity, the Illinois Department of Public Health requests that local health departments submit at least 2 to 5 “eligible” birds for testing – all perching birds, such as the crow, blue jay, starling, sparrow, finch, robin, cardinal, swallow, mockingbird, and wren will be accepted for testing and the birds found should be believed dead less than 48 hours with no signs of decomposing – if during the week, Monday thru Friday, the dead birds can be picked up for testing, by calling the JCHD offices at  783-5206  – if during a weekend or evening hours, use rubber gloves, place the bird in a heavy bag & seal it, place that in another bag and seal it, then chill it,or freeze it – call the before mentioned number & leave a message – the testing runs from now until October 15th – thanks in advance for this effort in Newton and Jasper County.

 

(OLNEY)  A reminder that the second and final installment of real estate taxes in Richland County is due on Wednesday, September 7th, less than two weeks away – the payments can be made in person at the Treasurer’s office at the Courthouse (open weekdays from 8:00 to 4:00), by mail with a postmark of September 7th accepted, or by placing in the Treasurer’s drop box on the south side of the Courthouse – a late penalty of  1.5% per month will be charged on payments that are past due after September 7th.

 

(NEWTON)  It was last week that the USDA announced additional investments in the Beginning Farmer & Rancher Development Program as some $17.8 million will fund 37 projects around the nation – this brings the USDA’s overall investment to $129 million for 249 nationwide projects – while the average age of the American farmer now exceeds 58 years, the USDA also offers microloan & operating loan programs to help young farmers – more details about assistance for young & beginning farmers is online at  www.usda.gov.

 

(OLNEY)  The Richland County Farm Bureau Young Leaders will host their 5th Annual Trap Shoot tomorrow at the County Line Gun Club, west of Noble – the registration begins at 9:00 in the morning with the shooting at 10:00 – the individual fee is $25, with the five member team registration set at $120 – concessions available for lunch, plus a raffle drawing to win a Bushmaster M4A3 Black .223/5.56 rifle – stop by the Richland County Farm Bureau office in Olney for details or call the office at  618-393-4116.

 

(NEWTON)  It’s the 2016 Willow Hill Annual Homecoming tomorrow with all proceeds for Edison Park improvements – registration for a Car & Bike Show is from 9:00 to 11:00 that morning, plus the Antique Tractor Show registration starts at 10:00 – also a pedal tractor pull, greased pig wrestling, bingo, a flea market, cake walk, & more – the serving of pulled pork & nachos starts at 11:00, then pork burgers and more in the evening – the Thinga-Ma Jug Band at 3:00 and raffle drawing at 5:00 – all are invited to attend.

 

(OLNEY)  With an Emergency Appeal in place, the American Red Cross is looking for local hometown heroes to get out and give blood today in Olney as a special blood drive will be held at the Olney Fire Department, along North Walnut Street, from 2:00 until 6:00 – plus, it’s a special Battle of the Badges Blood Drive, a friendly challenge between the Olney Fire Department and Olney Police Department, whereas donors are asked to “vote” for their department of choice – the winner will receive a Gold Seal Certificate and bragging rights – so get out and give blood this afternoon – if you miss the chance, another Richland County blood drive will be this coming Sunday morning at the St. Joseph Parish Center in Stringtown, from 7:30 to 11:30 – remember, all blood types and platelets are very much needed.

 

REMINDERS  :
    Jasper County’s own Bob Story will be live in concert this Sunday night, at the Grace United Methodist Church in Newton, beginning at 6:00 – a time of fellowship will follow, with ice cream sundaes available


    The First Assembly Church in Olney has a “free comedy date night” to celebrate marriage thru laughter tomorrow night at 6:00 – free child care for those in 6th grade & under – logon at  www.olneyag.com


    The Claremont Chowder is tomorrow in the air-conditioned Community Center – with serving at 4:00, it’s chowder by the bowl or bulk until sold out, plus beef barbeque, fish, pies, cakes, and more


    The White Squirrel Saddle Club has a fundraising cookout tomorrow at the Olney IGA – hot dogs, brats, pork burgers, chips, & drinks served from 10:00 to 1:00 – proceeds for the Club’s various projects


    Over in Clay County, the Xenia Firemen’s fish fry & dance is tomorrow behind the old Grade School – features the big mud bog at 11:00, a flea market & more – a noon registration for the road rally/motorcycle run, plus lazer tag, a washer tournament, petting zoo, games, entertainment, & plenty of food thru the night


    The Thunder Run & Raffle to support POW/MIA Awareness has registration from 8:30 to 9:45 in the morning at the Olney VFW – the kick stands go up at 10:00 – the 180 mile ride includes lunch at The Keys on Carlyle Lake – then back to the Olney VFW for a dinner by donation, an auction, and raffle drawing


    The Historic Sailor Springs Foundation has a country breakfast tomorrow morning with serving from 8:00 to 10:00 in the Foundation Building – $6 tickets at the door – carry-outs available – all ages welcome


     The Master’s Hands, in the former Ty’s Family Buffet Building on West Main Street in Olney, has an Indoor Garage Sale this weekend – this Friday evening from 4:00 to 8:00 and tomorrow from 7:00 to 2:00


    The Richland County Farmers Market is set up today in the Olney City Park, under the pole barns – that’s fresh produce and more available for purchase from 10:00 to 4:00 today – check it out

 

 

 

August 25, 2016

 

(OLNEY)  As the slow-moving cold front to our north eventually sags southward across the downstate area by tonight, most of today’s rain activity will stay in the northern half of Illinois – however, our rain chances increase later today thru tonight – then after a dry day tomorrow, we’ll have more scattered chances of rain Saturday thru Saturday night, but it won’t be a total washout – maybe dry then on Sunday – listen for updates.

 

(NEWTON)  In state news – higher prices and fewer choices on the Illinois “ObamaCare” marketplace will make choosing a health plan for 2017 a potentially frustrating experience for families who buy their own coverage – the Illinois Department of Insurance released information yesterday on rates it submitted to federal officials, showing the average rate increase for a typical benchmark plan is 43% – many parts of the state will have fewer than 20 plans to choose from with many major insurers leaving the Illinois exchange.

 

(OLNEY)  This year’s Du Quoin State Fair has four theme days that will provide free admission to select fairgoers – Illinois’ second State Fair opens up tomorrow with College Night, where all college students with a valid student ID will be admitted free – this coming Sunday is Veterans Day when all Veterans and their immediate family will be allowed in free with proper identification – next Wednesday, it’s Senior Citizens Day when all seniors age 60 and over will be admitted free – and on Sunday, September 4th, all police officers, firefighters, and EMT’s will be allowed in free with their ID badge – plus all children 12 & under are free everyday – for more details, check the Fair’s website online, at  www.duquoinstatefair.net.

 

(NEWTON)  The Teacher’s Retirement System Board is scheduled to vote tomorrow on whether to adjust its expected rate of return on investments, a move that could increase the state’s required payment by hundreds of millions of dollars that could have a devastating impact on both education and social services – the action comes as pension systems nationwide report lackluster returns – therefore, analysts and rating agencies are pressuring boards to lower assumptions to ensure there’s enough money to payout benefits.

 

(OLNEY)  Olney Central College is yet again being recognized nationally for its outstanding educational quality & affordability – this time making WalletHub’s list of “Best Community Colleges” – in its findings published this week, the financial website selected OCC as 73rd overall in its comparison of over 820 U.S. community colleges – the rankings are based on several key factors, including cost & financing, educational outcomes, and career outcomes – OCC’s highest rating was 10th in the nation for educational outcomes, which measures an institution’s first-year retention rate, graduation rate, transfer-out rate, student-faculty ratio, and degrees & certificates awarded – while Olney Central College was one of only three Illinois schools to make the Top 100 list, it was the only state community college to place in the Top 10 list for educational outcomes – the other two were Rend Lake College and Trinity College of Nursing & Health Sciences in Rock Island – it was earlier this year that USA Today and Schools.com ranked OCC the No. 1 community college in Illinois – second best was Lincoln Trail College, near Robinson – the entire IECC District meanwhile, was named one of the Top 50 Best Value Community Colleges District of 2016 – the IECC ranked 16th in the nation which was the highest of any Illinois institution district to make the list.

 

(NEWTON)  Congressman John Shimkus is visiting our downstate area on this Thursday – the Veteran will take part in the annual Veterans Advisory Committee Meeting this afternoon at Lake Land College, south of Mattoon – the Congressman will conduct Open Office Hours today from 3:30 to 5:00 at the Newton City Hall, meeting one-on-one with area constituents – then the former teacher will take part in the regional Farm Bureau Legislative Dinner this evening at the Dan Strine Farm near West Salem, where the Congressman will address the annual Richland, Edwards, & Wabash County Farm Bureau event, plus answers questions – by the way, to see if any reservation spots are available for this evening’s Legislative Meeting & Dinner, call the Richland County Farm Bureau office in Olney as soon as possible today, at  618-393-4116.

 

(OLNEY)  With an Emergency Appeal in place, the American Red Cross is looking for local hometown heroes to get out and give blood tomorrow in Olney, Richland County, & the surrounding area – the drive will be held at the Olney Fire Department, along North Walnut Street, from 2:00 until 6:00 – plus, it’s a special Battle of the Badges Blood Drive, a friendly challenge between the Olney Fire Department and Olney Police Department, whereas donors are asked to “vote” for their department of choice – the winner will receive a Gold Seal Certificate and bragging rights – so get out and give blood tomorrow afternoon – if you miss the chance, another Richland County blood drive will be Sunday morning at the St. Joseph Parish Center in Stringtown, from 7:30 to 11:30 – remember, all blood types and platelets are very much needed.

 

(NEWTON)  It’s the 2016 Willow Hill Annual Homecoming this Saturday with all proceeds for Edison Park improvements – registration for a Car & Bike Show is from 9:00 to 11:00 that morning, plus the Antique Tractor Show registration starts at 10:00 – also a pedal tractor pull, greased pig wrestling, bingo, a flea market, cake walk, & more – the serving of pulled pork & nachos starts at 11:00, then pork burgers and more in the evening – the Thinga-Ma Jug Band at 3:00 and raffle drawing at 5:00 – all are invited to attend.

 

(OLNEY)  In conjunction with the Olney Arts Council’s Fall Festival, there’s a new addition to the list of activities – it’s the first ever Miss White Squirrel Festival Queen Pageant – it’s an opportunity for school age young women to enhance & demonstrate positive morals, good academic standing, talent in the arts, community service, character, and confidence – the Pageant will also focus on building professional relationships, demonstration of talents, and community service & awareness – there are three levels of exhibition and competition  :  Little Miss (K-5)  :  Junior Miss (6-8)  :  and Miss (9-12)  :  sponsored by the Olney Arts Council, the Pageant will occur the evening of the annual Fall Festival, September 24th, but space is limited with only the first 7 entrants accepted, plus time is running out as all applications are due by tomorrow, August 26th – application forms are available from any Richland County School office.

 

(OLNEY)  The Olney Central College Community Choir officially begins rehearsals tonight – that’s at 6:00 in the Choir / Band Room #216 this evening – it’s open to anyone, high school age or older, regardless of experience – it’s the Community Choir’s sixth season and will feature “Vivaldi’s Gloria” in another joint Holiday Concert with the Lincoln Trail College Community Choir to be held December 13th and 17th, including strings, trumpet, organ, harpsichord, and professional soloists – for more details, those interested can attend tonight’s first rehearsal or call OCC Choral Director Andrew Pittman, at  395-7777, ext. 2252.

 

REMINDERS  :
    Everyone’s invited to enjoy the vocal talents of Jasper County’s own Bob Story, live in concert this Sunday evening, at the Grace United Methodist Church in Newton, beginning at 6:00 – all are invited to stick around after the concert for a time of fellowship, plus ice cream sundaes available – check it out


    The First Assembly Church in Olney will host a “free comedy date night” to celebrate marriage thru laughter, this Saturday night at 6:00 – free child care will be provided for those in 6th grade & under – it will feature Christian comedians, previously recorded – for more, logon at  www.olneyag.com


    The local Rolling Thunder Chapter 3 has a Thunder Run & Raffle to support POW/MIA Awareness this Saturday with registration from 8:30 to 9:45 in the morning at the Olney VFW – the kick stands go up at 10:00 – the 180 mile ride includes lunch at The Keys on Carlyle Lake – then back to the Olney for a dinner by donation, an auction, and raffle drawing – for more, go online at  www.rollingthunderil3.com


     The Master’s Hands, in the former Ty’s Family Buffet Building on West Main Street in Olney, will host an Indoor Garage Sale this weekend – that’s Friday evening from 4:00 to 8:00 and Saturday from 7:00 to 2:00 – to donate or to arrange for drop off, call  618-843-6130  – refreshments available for purchase


    The SPIFF (Scotts Pay It Forward Foundation) Pizza Night fundraiser is tonight at the Casey Pizza Hut, from 5:00 to 7:30 – it’ll be hosted by Miss Clark County Fair Queen Whitley Brandenburg – proceeds go to families with children affected by cancer – for more, logon at  www.scottspayitforward.org


    The South Eastern Friends of the NRA have a meeting coming up tonight at The Holiday, starting at 6:00 – anyone can attend – for more information, call John at  618-354-1047