LOCAL NEWS

Local News

December 12, 2016

 

(OLNEY)  As a cold front moved thru our region last night with less than a half inch of rain on average falling, we’ll see some clearing and a little bit of sunshine later today – but, a second cold front will move thru by noon tomorrow with a chance of rain and/or snow tomorrow morning – then more Arctic air moves in for midweek – a slight warm up could bring some wintry weather for the weekend – listen for updates.

 

(NEWTON)  In state news – Illinois lawmakers are facing increasing pressure from law enforcement to crack down on repeat gun offenders who are blamed for the surge in gun violence this year, especially in Chicago – one current proposal being developed would direct judges to impose longer sentences on repeat gun offenders, however would not impose a new mandatory minimum as previously proposed – Chicago has hit the 700 mark for homicides this year, far exceeding last year’s homicide total of 468 in 2015.

 

(OLNEY)  The University of Illinois says it is contracting with the largest wind farm in the state to buy power for its Urbana-Champaign campus – the agreement announced this week took effect November 1st and will last a decade, thru October 2026 – under the deal, the school gets 8.6% of the total wind generated electricity from the Rail Splitter Wind Farm located north of Lincoln, in Logan and Tazewell Counties.

 

(NEWTON)  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.

 

(OLNEY)  A huge “thank you” to everyone that helped us with our “Freedom Rings” promotion this past Friday at the Wal-Mart SuperCenter in Olney as we filled the bed of a brand new 2017 Chevy Silverado pickup truck with non-perishable food items and toys, all of which was donated to the Master’s Hands in Olney to help those in need this Christmas – thanks to those who took time and donated to the cause – also thanks to Eagleson’s Automotive Center for the use of their truck and to all the great event sponsors as well.

 

(OLNEY)  The Olney Rotary Club wants to say a huge “thank you” for supporting their fundraising Radio Auction this past Saturday morning on Freedom 92.9 – it was the best one yet, as over $6,000 was raised by the selling of just over 100 items over the three hour event – the funds will support the Good Samaritan and Rotary Scholarships at both Olney Central College and Richland County High School – thanks again to all the great local businesses who donated items for the auction and to the buyers and listeners who took part.

 

(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, that’s 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.

 

(NEWTON/OLNEY)  Area farmers are reminded that tomorrow, December 13th, is the final day to return ballots for the 2016 County Committee Elections to their local FSA office – the USDA Farm Service Agency extended the deadline from a week ago to ensure that all eligible voters had a chance to get those ballots submitted – the newly elected committee members will take up their positions on January 1st, 2017.

 

(OLNEY)  The City of Olney’s leaf collection program is scheduled to end this coming Friday, December 16th, or as weather conditions allow – as the program is coming to a close for the fall, the citizens of Olney are welcome to call City Hall with addresses where leaves can be picked up – the list will be made for both loose and bagged leaves, therefore citizens are requested to place their leaves as close to the streets as possible, but please do not place loose leaves in streets or ditches – for those who’d like to dispose their own leaves, the City’s Brush Dump facility is open to the public for drop off of all landscape waste – the Brush Dump’s hours are from 10:00 to 4:00 each Monday, Thursday, Friday, and Saturday in Olney.

 

(NEWTON)  The Jasper County Honey Do Ministry will have its Annual Cookie Walk and Bake Sale this weekend at the Grace United Methodist Church in Newton as visitors use the church’s south doors on the east and west sides of the building – it’s this Friday afternoon and evening from 3:00 to 6:30 and Saturday morning from 8:30 to 12:00 noon – buyers simply fill a box or bag with an assortment of cookies and other baked goods for a price of $7.00 per pound – with proceeds to help with the Ministry’s summertime Mission Work Week, the public's help is needed to make this weekend’s event a success – donations of cookies, candies, and other baked goods should be taken to the church’s mini-kitchen before noon on Friday or at 8:30 Saturday morning – plus volunteers are needed both days with three or four workers needed for two hours shifts both Friday and Saturday – to see how to help out or to sign up, call Jane at  618-783-2534.

 

(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 less than 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)  There’s a few meetings scheduled for tonight  :  the Richland County Board will meet in special session at 5:00 in the County Jail meeting room to consider various agenda items  :  the Olney City Council will meet at 5:30 at the City Hall – most of the special meeting will be held in closed session to discuss personnel – the Olney City Council will then have its regular bi-monthly meeting later tonight at 7:00  :  the Noble Village Board will have its regular bi-monthly meeting tonight at Village Hall in Noble starting at 7:00  :  all meetings are open to the public at their respective locations in Olney and Noble tonight.

 

(OLNEY)  The Olney Central College Theater will host its second and final audition for Disney’s “The Little Mermaid” tonight at 7:00, in the Dr. John D. Stull Performing Arts Center at OCC – those auditioning will give a reading from the script, plus sing from memory a portion of 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 a part is 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 as well – the performances are the last weekend in March and the first weekend in April next year, in 2017.

 

(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 Richland Memorial Hospital in Olney from 12:00 to 4:00  :  also today at the Beecher City High School from 1:00 to 6:00  :  tomorrow at Newton Community High School from 8:30 to 2:00  :  also tomorrow at the Cross County Mall in Mattoon from 2:00 to 6:00  :  on Wednesday at the Blood Donation Center in Effingham from 11:30 to 6:00  :  all blood types needed.

 

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 Effingham Performance Center will host a Scott Wattles Christmas concert this Saturday night at 7:00 – also includes the Eagles Wings Quartet and the Mattoon Green Wave Singers – tickets are $15


    The Jasper County Health Department has its next Children’s First Class this Wednesday afternoon & evening from 3:00 to 7:00 – for information or to sign up, call the Department offices at  618-783-4154


    The Olney Christmas Lights Display is open to the public in the Olney City Park – from 5:00 to 9:00 Sunday thru Thursday nights – from 5:00 to 10:00 on Fridays & Saturdays – now thru December 31st


    Richland Memorial Hospital has a South Bend Chocolate Company fundraiser today from now until 4:00 and the final day, tomorrow, from 8:00 to 3:00, in the lower level private dining rooms – check it out

 

 

 

December 10, 2016

 

(OLNEY)  A weak high pressure ridge will keep us dry the first half of this weekend, although with an approaching low pressure system, clouds will increase thru today with a mixed bag of precipitation early tomorrow morning – from rain & freezing rain to sleet and snow, it will mostly all switch over to all rain by mid-morning, then end by midnight – then dry the first of next week with more Arctic air – listen for updates.

 

(NEWTON)  In state news – the Illinois Emergency Management Agency and local EMA’s are asking all statewide residents to take time now to prepare for possible severe winter weather conditions that may strike in the weeks ahead – safety survivor kits should be set and ready for each vehicle and home and all family members should know what to do in the event of bad winter weather – for tips, logon at  www.Ready.Illinois.com.

 

(OLNEY)  A huge “thank you” to everyone that helped us with our “Freedom Rings” promotion yesterday at the Wal-Mart SuperCenter in Olney as we filled the bed of a brand new 2017 Chevy Silverado pickup truck with non-perishable food items and toys, all of which was donated to the Master’s Hands in Olney to help those in need this Christmas – thanks to those who took time and their money to donate to the cause – also thanks to Eagleson’s Automotive Center for the use of their truck and all the great event sponsors.

 

(OLNEY)  There’s a couple of special meetings scheduled for next Monday night  :  the Richland County Board will meet at 5:00 in the County Jail meeting room to consider various agenda items  :  the Olney City Council will meet at 5:30 at the City Hall – most of the meeting will be held in closed session to discuss personnel – the Olney City Council will then have its regular bi-monthly meeting later Monday night at 7:00  :  all meetings are open to the public at their respective locations in Olney next Monday night.

 

(OLNEY)  The Olney Central College Theater will host auditions for Disney’s “The Little Mermaid” tomorrow afternoon at 2:00 and next Monday night at 7:00, in the Dr. John D. Stull Performing Arts Center at OCC – a character list & audition cuts for prepared readings are online at  www.iecc.edu/occtheater  – the performances are the last weekend in March and the first weekend in April next year in 2017.

 

(OLNEY)  The 2016 Rotary Radio Auction is later this morning, right here, on Freedom 92.9 WSEI – it’s from 9:00 to 12:00 noon and features 105 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” tomorrow at 4:00 – includes a candlelight service & scripture, English carols, & Austrian Christmas music, all sung in German, by the Wendelin Kloepfen Singers – refreshments afterwards – all in memory of Father David Braun

    The Heritage House Museum has its Christmas Open House tomorrow 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 Beulah United Methodist Church has its 25th annual “Travel Back to Bethlehem” nativity scene tonight 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 today from 11:00 to 3:00 in the KC Hall in Newton with over 25 vendors taking part – it’s cash & carry with door prizes and more – lunch will be served – all are invited

    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 afternoon from 2:00 to 4:00 – all are invited to stop by and meet the queens and to donate items to help those in need this Christmas

    The Olney Public Library will host a Santa Make It / Take It Workshop this 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 Olney Christmas Lights Display is open to the public in the Olney City Park – from 5:00 to 10:00 tonight and from 5:00 to 9:00 tomorrow night – the Display is open each night now thru December 31st

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

December 9, 2016

 

(OLNEY)  As an upper level disturbance moves over the Midwest, we’ll have some clouds today, maybe some flurries mixed in as well – then more clouds and a dry sky thru tomorrow, still with cold conditions – the next system could give us light snow & sleet until it turns to all rain on Sunday before ending – then dry Monday and more Arctic air filters by midweek, next week – stay tuned for continued weather updates.

 

(NEWTON)  In state news – the State Attorney General’s Office has announced a settlement with Jimmy John’s for imposing highly restrictive non-compete agreements on its low-wage sandwich shop employees and delivery drivers whose primary job tasks are to take food orders and make and deliver sandwiches – the agreement calls for Jimmy John’s to notify all employees and all franchises of the ruling and to provide $100,000 to the AG’s Office for education – Jimmy John’s has nearly 300 sandwich shops in Illinois.

 

(OLNEY)  With last month established as “Veterans Month” in Illinois, hundreds of volunteers participated in the Serving Those Who Served (STWS) Program – their goal was to make an impact in the lives of statewide Veterans thru the community service program designed by the State Department of Veterans’ Affairs – by the end of November, there were 41 total projects, involving 570 volunteers, that provided service, support, and assistance to over 3,730 Illinois Veterans – for more, check the IDVA website online.

 

(NEWTON)  In farm news  :  the USDA has announced it will offer farmers more opportunities to take part in the Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) – not only does it add an additional 1.1 million acres targeted to benefit wildlife, pollinators, and wetlands, but a new conservation initiative known CLEAR will add new tools to CRP that can help to improve overall water quality  :  farmers are reminded that December 13th, next Tuesday, is the deadline to return ballots to their local FSA Office for the County Committee elections.

 

(OLNEY)  The Richland County Board met for its regular monthly meeting last night in Olney – the Board  :  approved the County Claims for the month of November worth $48,398 with the large expenditures for lawyer fees and the purchase of an Animal Control truck  :  approved the Laborer’s Contract as it now goes back to the union for a vote  :  approved the fee schedule ordinance for Animal Control  :  approved the IDOT agreement for the County Engineer’s salary in 2017  :  approved the IDOT County Maintenance resolution for 2017  :  heard an update from the Public Building Commission on the Courthouse renovation work  :  took no action after an executive session to discuss negotiations and personnel  :  set a special meeting for next Monday evening, December 12th, at 5:30, to consider several agenda items that could not be acted upon at last night’s meeting  :  and said “thank you” to the 4-H Club and families who provided and served supper to the Board  :  the Board’s next regular monthly meeting will be January 12th, 2017.

 

(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 – today only is the annual “Postmark Day” at the Newton Post Office from 8:30 to 5:00 thru the day – then tonight 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 tonight on the Square for prizes donated by area businesses with the drawing at Arndt’s – plus don’t forget about Breakfast with Santa tomorrow morning at 10:30 at the St. Thomas Parish Center in Newton – also, receipts available for Chamber Bucks as well – for more details, find it all on Facebook, under Holly Jolly Jasper County Christmas.

 

(OLNEY)  The City of Olney’s leaf collection program is scheduled to end a week from today, on Friday, December 16th, or as weather conditions allow – as the program is coming to a close for the fall, the citizens of Olney are welcome to call City Hall with addresses where leaves can be picked up – the list will be made for both loose and bagged leaves, therefore citizens are requested to place their leaves as close to the streets as possible, but please do not place loose leaves in streets or ditches – for those who’d like to dispose their own leaves, the City’s Brush Dump facility is open to the public for drop off of all landscape waste – the Dump’s hours are from 10:00 to 4:00 each Monday, Thursday, Friday, and Saturday.

 

(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 today, this December 9th.

 

(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 2016 Rotary Radio Auction is tomorrow 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.

 

(OLNEY)  Be listening later today for the annual two-hour Radiothon on Freedom 92.9 as the Music Boosters and the Foundation for Academic Excellence at Richland County High School will be featuring music from District-wide students and taking calls to accept donations for their efforts – that’s from 4:00 to 6:00 later this afternoon and evening on Freedom 92.9 WSEI – we encourage all to listen and help out.

 

(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 Effingham Blood Donation Center from 7:00 to 2:00  :  today at the Sandoval High School from 11:00 to 4:00 and the Odin High School from 1:00 to 5:00  :  next Monday at Richland Memorial Hospital in Olney from 12:00 to 4:00  :  all blood types are needed.

 

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 provided


    The Beulah United Methodist Church has its 25th annual “Travel Back to Bethlehem” nativity scene tomorrow 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” tomorrow 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 tomorrow 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 – it’s cash & carry with door prizes – lunch will be served


    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 Olney Public Library will host a Santa Make It / Take It Workshop tomorrow 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 “taco night” tonight at the Olney VFW with serving from 5:30 to 7:30 – the menu includes tacos, nachos, taco salads, and much more – eat in or carry-out – all are invited tonight to the Olney VFW


    The Christian Club at Richland County High School has a “sock drive” at tonight’s Olney  Tiger game – those attending are asked to bring a new pair of socks to donate – all socks will go to a homeless ministry


    The Olney Christmas Lights Display is open to the public in the Olney City Park – from 5:00 to 10:00 on Fridays & Saturdays, from 5:00 to 9:00 on Sundays thru Thursdays – each night now thru December 31st

 

 

 

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