LOCAL NEWS

Local News

June 6, 2017

 

(OLNEY)  Cooler and much drier air is entering central and southeastern Illinois as northeast winds behind a cold from over Northern Kentucky and the southern part of Illinois.  Ample sunshine expected today with some cloud covering entering the area throughout the day.  Most forecast models projecting mostly dry skies throughout the week and into the weekend as the chances of showers and thunderstorms are transitioning north. – stay tuned for continued weather updates.

 

(OLNEY)  In State News –  Federal officials say they are providing free summer meals for school children in numerous locations across Illinois.  The U.S. Department of Agriculture announced earlier this week that there will be a kickoff for the program on June 23rd at a Chicago city park.  The state’s Board of Education runs the summer meals program while organization including the Illinois Hunger Coalition will be assisting as well.  The idea is to provide nutritious meals and snacks to children in the months between school years.  Officials say that for every 100 children who receive meals during school through the National School Lunch Programs, only 14 get them through the summer.

 

(NEWTON)  Former Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich received bad news when a federal appeals court again rejected his request for a rehearing on his request for another resentencing.  The 7th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals on Monday denied the former governor’s petition for a hearing before the entire court.  Blagojevich made the request after a three-judge panel of the appeals court rejected his case.  Blagojevich has exhausted virtually all of his legal options with this last request.  One of his last options would be to ask President Donald Trump for clemency.

 

(OLNEY)  Illinois poets are being given a chance to show their stuff in a statewide competition – Secretary of State Jesse White says that entry forms are now available for the annual Emerging Writers Competition Gwendolyn Brooks Poetry Award – the competition is open to any Illinois resident at least 18 years of age and the winner will receive $500 in cash, with second and third place also receiving cash – the winning poems will be submitted for publication in various journals – entries must be postmarked by June 30th.

 

(OLNEY)  In this week’s Richland County Rainfall Report, with the recording period ending at 8:00 yesterday morning, it was Decker Township tallying the most rainfall during that weeks span with fifty-five hundredths of an inch of rain (0.55).  Claremont, Madison and Bonpas Townships all followed with one tenth of an inch of rain (0.10).  Noble and Olney Township each recorded five hundredths of an inch (0.05).  Denver, Preston, German Townships, and the Farm Bureau Office in Olney all did not record any rainfall during this past week (0.00).  At our WVLN – WSEI National Weather Service Weather Station, at the south edge of Olney, we measured three hundredths of an inch (0.03) of rainfall during this past week.  A big thank you to all of our townships for helping in recording the rainfall during this spring.

 

(OLNEY)  It is that time of the year again when you see the taming of tigers and hear the roar of laughter.  The Ainad Shriners Circus returns to Southern Illinois for its 50th consecutive year! The circus continues this week with more performances.  Tigers, elephants, ponies, dogs, clowns and other acts are brought to the three ring stage where heart pounding aerial and high wire acrobats perform.  Performances of the Ainad Circus include: today at Waterloo, tomorrow at Fairfield, Wednesday here in Olney, Thursday and Friday at Salem and Saturday and Sunday at DuQuoin. Tickets are $15 for adults and $10 for children and can be purchased at participating Southern Illinois Hucks locations, MotoMart Conveneince Stores and Schnucks Supermarkets.  Additional details on the circus can be found online at www.soilshrinercircus.com
 

(NEWTON)  The Jasper County Fair is just a few weeks away, scheduled to get started on Monday, June 19th and continuing through June 24th.  The fair gets started with the Queen and Little Miss Pageant on that Monday.  Pedal Tractor Pulls, Talent Contest and Flat drags Tuesday, Rodeo on Wednesday, and Tractor Pulls on Thursday.  Harness racing is scheduled for that Friday.  And the fair wraps up with more harness racing and a demo derby on Saturday.  The Jasper County Fair is also one of several sites where fair officials are trying to find a signer who will be the opening act for both State Fairs in Springfield and DuQuoin.  Those taking part, must be 18 years old and for more information and rules check the State Fair website online at www.illinois.gov/statefair.

 

(OLNEY) Carle Richland Memorial Hospital will be resurfacing various areas of their campus this week starting on Wednesday, and continuing Thursday and Friday.  During the time of this work, signs and barricades will be present to help direct patients and visitors to the appropriate areas.  On Thursday, the Emergency Drive will be closed for resurfacing.  In the event of an emergency, individuals are asked to use the circle drive on the west side of the hospital, off the Mill Street entrance, next to the gazebo, and enter the facility through the doors located between the Convenient Care/ENT Clinic and the Cashier’s office.  Signs will be posted to direct Emergency Department traffic.  Carle Richland Memorial Hospital appreciates everyone’s patience as the scheduled work takes place.

 

(OLNEY)  The City of Olney has announced it is now soliciting Requests for Proposal for a mural to be placed on the south wall of the Olney City Hall, at 300 South Whittle Avenue – proposal and project specifications can be picked up at City Hall between the hours of 8:00 and 4:00, Monday thru Friday, or may be emailed by sending a request to  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.  – the deadline for proposal submission is June 30th, 2017, with a project completion date set for September 30th, 2017 – call if any questions.

 

(NEWTON) Rides Mass Transit District is inviting everyone in Crawford and Jasper Counties to join them for upcoming activities.  Friday July 7th ride with RMTD to Sumner to eat at the Dairy Dee (they only accept cash).  Saturday July 15th a trip to Tuscola for shopping at the Outlet Mall Winterberry Store, Beachys and more! Saturday July 22nd a trip to the Red Skelton Museum and sightseeing in Vincennes as well as a visit to the memorial and the Military Museum.  Small admission fees for both museums.  That is upcoming activities with the folks of Crawford and Jasper Counties and Rides Mass Transit District.  To schedule a ride, call RMTD at 1-866-389-7536.

 

(OLNEY)  The City of Olney would like to inform the public that Chestnut Street, from Camp to Whittle will be closed to traffic all day today.  Kitchell Avenue from Chestnut to Elm will also be closed to traffic during those days as well.  The City appreciates your cooperation and patience as they complete the needed work.

 

REMINDERS:

  Olney Central College is presents Agnes of God this Friday, June 9th and Saturday June 10th. Performances start at 7:30 at the Dr. John D. Stull Performing Arts Center College Theatre.  Tickets are at the door priced at $5.

   The Better Breathers Club Support Group will meet Tuesday afternoon at 1:00 at the Carle Richland Memorial Hospital Ambulance Garage Class.  For more information call 618-395-7340 extension 4035

   The Cummins Municipal Band will be performing at the Olney City Park this coming Wednesday, June 7th.  The Concert at the park will start at 7:30 – all are invited

  The Sound of Summer Free Concert Series in Olney will kick back in gear this coming Thurdsay.  Thing-a-ma-Jug will be performing at Bower Park starting at 6:00 this Thursday – all are invited

  The Jasper County American Legion Post #20 Auxiliary will be having smoked pork sandwiches on this Friday June 9th, starting at 10:30 and going until 1:00 or sold out.  Drive thru is available, for large orders call in ahead at 217-276-0941 or 618-553-4813 or 618-783-3185

  The First Assembly of God in Olney will be hosting a tradition Indian Dinner on Saturday June 10th, called A Taste of India.  Dinners served at 6:00 pm in the main lobby featuring an Indian themed menu. Dinner by donation and call 618-392-2222 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. for more information.

  The Big Blue Book Bus will be at Musgrove park on Tuesday June 6th from 3:00 until 7:00 pm.  For Richland County Students from Pre K to 8th grade. No Library card or ID necessary.

   The Olney VFW Taco Night is coming up this Friday, June 9th from 5:30 until 7:30 or until they are sold out. Everyone is invited out to enjoy tacos this coming Friday Night.

 

 

June 5, 2017

 

(OLNEY)  A weak frontal boundary pushing slowly southward across Illinois today, and brings with it slight rain chances.  Skies will clear and fair weather is expected into the overnight as the front pushes into Kentucky.  The rest of the week looks mostly dry for most of Illinois with highs into the upper 70s and lower 80s.  Next rain chances will enter the area Thursday and Friday before drying out for the weekend ahead  – stay tuned for continued weather updates.

 

(OLNEY)  In State News –  Two Illinois U.S. senators are taking steps to ensure that they have a voice in choosing the state’s new U.S. Attorneys.  Senators Dick Durbin and Tammy Duckworth have formed committees to provide input in picking candidates for each of the three U.S. judicial districts in Illinois.  President Donald Trump’s administration told U.S. attorneys nationwide in March to resign, including then-head Chicago U.S. Attorney Zachary Fardon.  Joel Levin in now Chicago’s acting U.S. attorney. The tradition is for a state’s top-ranking member of Congress from the president’s party to lead the process and for the opposition party to have meaningful input.  President Trump would nominate candidates and the Senate must confirm them.

 

(NEWTON)  Springfield businesses and a union have committed $35,000 to fund summer jobs program for youth in an effort to address a spike in violence.  Dozens of elected officials, community leaders, businesses, lobar union representatives and Springfield Mayor Jim Langfelder all joined in on the initiative.  Springfield has watched violence rise this year, including three shooting deaths in just the last two weeks.  The initiative could help provide jobs for teens over 15 years old and money for summer camp registration fees to cover families who can’t afford them. 

 

(NEWTON) Preparations are under way for a solar eclipse festival in Carbondale, that is expected have one of the longest durations of total darkness.  Several U.S. cities are preparing for the August 21st eclipse which will be visible in the country along a narrow stretch for Oregon to South Carolina.  Carbondale will experience roughly two hours and forty seconds of total darkness. Officials estimate upwards of fifty thousand people could attend the festivities in the days leading up to the eclipse in Carbondale.

 

(FLORA) A single vehicle traffic crash occurred yesterday night at 9:08 pm near Flora.  Preliminary investigations report that a 2011 Harley Davidson Motorcycle driven by James G. Musgrave, age 41 from Flora, ran off the south side of North Avenue just east of North Stanford Road on the east side of Flora when he lost control laying the motorcycle on its side.  Musgrave then hit a guard rail.  Musgrave was air lifted from Clay County Hospital to Carle Foundation Hospital with serious injuries.  Musgrave was cited for DUI, improper lane usage, failure to reduce speed to avoid an accident.  All subjects are innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.

 

(EFFINGHAM) A single car traffic crash occurred Friday morning at 5:30 am near on Interstate 70 near Effingham.  A 2018 Peterbuilt truck tractor, driven by 47 year old James D. Donaldson of St. Charles, MO, was traveling eastbound on I-70 when he fell asleep leaving the north side of the roadway, crossing the median and entering the I-70 westbound lanes of traffic.  Donaldson then traveled eastbound in the westbound lane before leaving the south side of the roadway back into the eastbound lane, and continued south off the roadway crossing the ditch, striking a cable fence and coming to a stop in a cornfield.  Donaldson was transported to St. Anthony Hospital in Effingham.  Donaldson was charged with improper lane usage, driving fatigued, DUI, possession of a controlled substance and possession of drug paraphernalia.  All subjects are innocent until proven guilty.

 

(MARSHALL) A traffic crash occurred at 12:03 Saturday morning on Interstate 70 near milepost 155.5 in Clark County. Preliminary investigation reports that a 2007 Gray Cadillac driven by Arthur L. Walls, age 80 of Picayune, MS, was traveling east on I70 when the passenger, Linda F. Gowdy, age 55 of Picayune, MS was having a medical issue causing Walls to slow and try to pull to the shoulder. A 2014 Freigthliner driven by Enrique Mejia-Soria age 22 of Mission, TX, slowed but was unable to avoid striking the Cadillac.  Walls and Gowdy were both transported to Terre Haute Regional Hospital for treatment of minor injuries. No charges were filed yet, the investigation is still ongoing.

 

(OLNEY)  It is that time of the year again when you see the taming of tigers and hear the roar of laughter.  The Ainad Shriners Circus returns to Southern Illinois for its 50th consecutive year! The circus continues this week with more performances.  Tigers, elephants, ponies, dogs, clowns and other acts are brought to the three ring stage where heart pounding aerial and high wire acrobats perform.  Performances of the Ainad Circus include: today at Waterloo, tomorrow at Fairfield, Wednesday here in Olney, Thursday and Friday at Salem and Saturday and Sunday at DuQuoin. Tickets are $15 for adults and $10 for children and can be purchased at participating Southern Illinois Hucks locations, MotoMart Conveneince Stores and Schnucks Supermarkets.  Additional details on the circus can be found online at www.soilshrinercircus.com
 

(NEWTON)  The Jasper County Fair is just a few weeks away, scheduled to get started on Monday, June 19th and continuing through June 24th.  The fair gets started with the Queen and Little Miss Pageant on that Monday.  Pedal Tractor Pulls, Talent Contest and Flat drags Tuesday, Rodeo on Wednesday, and Tractor Pulls on Thursday.  Harness racing is scheduled for that Friday.  And the fair wraps up with more harness racing and a demo derby on Saturday.  The Jasper County Fair is also one of several sites where fair officials are trying to find a signer who will be the opening act for both State Fairs in Springfield and DuQuoin.  Those taking part, must be 18 years old and for more information and rules check the State Fair website online at www.illinois.gov/statefair.

 

(OLNEY) Carle Richland Memorial Hospital will be resurfacing various areas of their campus this week starting on Wednesday, and continuing Thursday and Friday.  During the time of this work, signs and barricades will be present to help direct patients and visitors to the appropriate areas.  On Thursday, the Emergency Drive will be closed for resurfacing.  In the event of an emergency, individuals are asked to use the circle drive on the west side of the hospital, off the Mill Street entrance, next to the gazebo, and enter the facility through the doors located between the Convenient Care/ENT Clinic and the Cashier’s office.  Signs will be posted to direct Emergency Department traffic.  Carle Richland Memorial Hospital appreciates everyone’s patience as the scheduled work takes place.

 

(OLNEY)  The City of Olney would like to inform the public that Chestnut Street, from Camp to Whittle will be closed to traffic all day today and tomorrow.  Kitchell Avenue from Chestnut to Elm will also be closed to traffic during those days as well.  The City appreciates your cooperation and patience as they complete the needed work.

 

REMINDERS:

  Animal tales will be performing at the Olney Public Library on today at 5:00 pm. A variety of exotic animals featured as part of the library’s summer reading program, Reading by Design.  There is still time for pre-schoolers to eights graders to register for the library reading challenge.

  Olney Central College is presents Agnes of God this Friday, June 9th and Saturday June 10th. Performances start at 7:30 at the Dr. John D. Stull Performing Arts Center College Theatre.  Tickets are at the door priced at $5.

   The Better Breathers Club Support Group will meet Tuesday afternoon at 1:00 at the Carle Richland Memorial Hospital Ambulance Garage Class.  For more information call 618-395-7340 extension 4035

   The Cummins Municipal Band will be performing at the Olney City Park this coming Wednesday, June 7th.  The Concert at the park will start at 7:30 – all are invited

  The Sound of Summer Free Concert Series in Olney will kick back in gear this coming Thurdsay.  Thing-a-ma-Jug will be performing at Bower Park starting at 6:00 this Thursday – all are invited

  The Jasper County American Legion Post #20 Auxiliary will be having smoked pork sandwiches on this Friday June 9th, starting at 10:30 and going until 1:00 or sold out.  Drive thru is available, for large orders call in ahead at 217-276-0941 or 618-553-4813 or 618-783-3185

  The First Assembly of God in Olney will be hosting a tradition Indian Dinner on Saturday June 10th, called A Taste of India.  Dinners served at 6:00 pm in the main lobby featuring an Indian themed menu. Dinner by donation and call 618-392-2222 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. for more information.

  The Big Blue Book Bus will be at Musgrove park on Tuesday June 6th from 3:00 until 7:00 pm.  For Richland County Students from Pre K to 8th grade. No Library card or ID necessary.

 

 

June 2, 2017

 

(OLNEY)  A broad area of high pressure will continue to keep the precipitation at bay over the next couple of days.  As forecast models shifted recently keeping our area dry today and tomorrow, with the rain chances limited to Sunday.  Mostly dry conditions will follow that wave and precipitation chances Sunday.  Models show a cold front should move through the area late this week, but due to the high, minimal chances of precipiation. – stay tuned for continued weather updates.

 

(OLNEY)  In State News – A plan to overhaul Illinois’ school funding formula has prevailed as a highlight for advocates in legislative session marked largely by futility and the lack of a budget compromise.  Lawmakers approved a plan to direct more dollars to the state’s neediest schools in the session’s final hours Wednesday.  The measure advanced from the House to the Senate where I passed in the face of opposition.  The measure would direct money to districts based on student demographics and local resources. No district will receive less than it currently does, the measure just affects new money.  Democratic sponsors say the legislation will help close the gap between the nation’s highest low and high-income districts while Republican lawmakers and Governor Bruce Rauner’s administration say the plan is a “bailout” for Chicago Public Schools.

 

(NEWTON)  A traffic crash occurred yesterday evening at 5:15 PM.  Preliminary investigation indicates that a 2013 Ford Fusion driven by Hope M. Warren, age 22 of Salem, was eastbound in the center turn lane on Rout 151 at Bell Club Road and failed to see a 2002 Dodge truck, driven by Glenn L. Gruen, age 40 of Centralia, traveling westbound before making a left hand turn onto Bell Club Road. Warren turned in front of Gruen who then struck Warren.  Warren was transported to St. Mary’s Hospital in Centralia for injuries.  Warren was cited for improper lane usage.  All subjects are presumed innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.

 

(OLNEY)  Illinois poets are being given a chance to show their stuff in a statewide competition – Secretary of State Jesse White says that entry forms are now available for the annual Emerging Writers Competition Gwendolyn Brooks Poetry Award – the competition is open to any Illinois resident at least 18 years of age and the winner will receive $500 in cash, with second and third place also receiving cash – the winning poems will be submitted for publication in various journals – entries must be postmarked by June 30th.

 

(NEWTON)  The U.S. Department of Agriculture announced yesterday that the nomination period for the local Farm Service Agency (FSA) county committees begin on Thursday, June 15th. Farmers and racnhers may nominate themselves or others.  Organizations may also nominate candidates to better serve their communities.  To be eligible to serve on an FSA county committee, a person must participate or cooperate in an agency administered program and reside in the local administrative area where the election is being held. After the nomination period, candidates will encourage the eligible producers in their area to vote. FSA will mail election ballots to eligible voters beginning in November.

 

(OLNEY)  It is that time of the year again when you see the taming of tigers and hear the roar of laughter.  The Ainad Shriners Circus returns to Southern Illinois for its 50th consecutive year! The circus rolls into action starting this Saturday for the first of twelve performances.  Tigers, elephants, ponies, dogs, clowns and other acts are brought to the three ring stage where heart pounding aerial and high wire acrobats perform.  Performances of the Ainad Circus include: June 3rd and 4th at Belleveille, June 5th at Waterloo, June 6th at Fairfield, June 7th here in Olney, June 8th and 9th at Salem and June 10th and 11th a DuQuoin. Tickets are $15 for adults and $10 for children and can be purchased at participating Southern Illinois Hucks locations, MotoMart Conveneince Stores and Schnucks Supermarkets.  Additional details on the circus can be found online at www.soilshrinercircus.com
 

(NEWTON)  Eight dynamic performances plus two free concerts are planned for the 2017 DuQuoin  State Fair.  Ttickets for the Grandstand concert series are now on sale via ticketmaster and the DuQuoin State Fair Box Office. The first of the free concerts is the band of former Chicago Bear defensive lineman call the Chicago 6 on August 25th.  Chris Janson along with High Valley will perform on August 27th.  The Gin Blossoms will take to the Grandstand on August 28th.  Granger Smith joined by Drew Baldridge will perform on August 29th.  Dueling Pianos International will take the stage for an August 30th performance.  Roots & Boots Tour will be stopping at the State Fair on August 31st featuring Sammy Kershaw, Aaron Tippin and Collin Raye.  Switchfoot and Lifehouse will perform on September 1st.  Logan Mize and Chris Cavanaugh will join the Cadillac Three for September 2nd performance at the Grandstand.  The tickets are on sale at the box office or on ticketmaster.

 

(NEWTON)  It’s Strawberry Fest on the square in Newton this Friday and Saturday, June 2nd & 3rd.  Started in 1994, the Jasper County Strawberry Fest is a 2 day festival celebrating strawberries in Jasper County.  The festival is two action packed days.  Events start at 3:00 on Friday with science experiments from 3:00 until 5:00, Lip Sync Battle from 5:00 until 8:00 and Moana starting at dusk (around 8:00).  Saturday’s activities begin at 5:30 in the morning with Biscuits and Gravy at the Masonic Lodge.  Pancakes and strawberries at the First Presbyterian Church from 6:00 until 10:00.  Holy Yoga from 7:30 until 8:30 on the North East side of the square.  A pet parade from 9:00 to 10:00 starting at the Grace Methodist Church.  An Animal Show will be from 10:00 until 12 noon.  Lemonade Stand Competition from 11:00 until 1:00.  The Party on the Square from 12:00 to 3:00.  Playdough Sculpting Contest from 1:00 until 2:00, Pins & Pines Painting Party from 2:00 until 4:00.  Story Time with Gigi from 3:00 to 3:30. Brian Madrid the Hypnotist from 3:30 until 5:00.  A bags tournament from 5:00 until 6:00.  The Homemade Ice Cream booth will be open from 10:00 until 8:00.  It all wraps up with the Ash Band from 6:00 until 8:00.  All these great events taking place for Strawberry Fest, in Newton. 

 

(OLNEY)  The City of Olney would like to inform the public that Chestnut Street, from Camp to Whittle will be closed to traffic all day starting today, June 2nd as well as Monday June 5th and Tuesday June 6th.  Kitchell Avenue from Chestnut to Elm will also be closed to traffic during those days as well.  The City appreciates your cooperation and patience as they complete the needed work.

 

REMINDERS:
 

   Blanks Insurance Day of Recycling is today from 10am to 2pm.  A event to raise funds and awareness for Big Brothers Big Sisters of Richland County.  You can drop off the paper items you would like to have shredded or any electronics you would like to have recycled at Blanks Insurance on whittle avenue in Olney.  For more information contact Allyson at 618-393-2195.

   Fox Creek apartments Cookout at the Olney IGA is today from 10:30 to 1:30.

   Hospice of SE Illinois 5K Run/Walk is this Saturday, June 3 at 8am at the Richland County Middle School.  Pre-register by stopping by the office, or on the day of event from 7-7:45am.  Registration fee is $20. Complimentary T-shirts for the first 50 individuals that register.

   The Olney American Legion will have a Benefit Fish Fry for the Skip and Kelly Ammerman family, who lost their home in a fire will be held today starting at 5:30pm.

   Team Shelley will be selling Pork burgers and Brats at the Olney IGA, Saturday , June 3rd from 10am-2pm.  All proceeds to the local MS Join The Movement.

   The 2017 Richland County Fair Queen contestants will have a car wash at Wood’s Auto Body on Rt. 130
South in Olney, Saturday, June 3rd from 9am- 2pm.  Donations appreciated.

   The TBIL 3rd Annual Ride for the LCUF will be Saturday, June 3rd. Sign ups begin at 9:00 Saturday morning and the ride will leave at 10:30 from the Lanterman Park in Bridgeport.  $20 fee also includes a shirt. A little Miss and Mr. Contest will also take place upon returning.  Dinner and Auction to follow.

 

 

June 1, 2017

 

(OLNEY)  Even with the upper low spinning to our north and the associated fast-moving waves around it passing into the Great Lakes region, our area is expected to miss out on the showers and storms as they track south keeping us dry for the next couple of days.  Limited chances of some precipitation could be expected late Friday night and into the weekend but models are showing the bulk of the day Saturday is beginning to look somewhat drier than previously expected.  Main chances of showers and possibly storms enters the area late Saturday night into Sunday.. – stay tuned for continued weather updates.

 

(OLNEY)  In State News – Lack of trust between Democratic-led Legislature and the Republican Governor of Illinois came to a head yesterday, as the House speaker acknowledged the midnight deadline to end the budget drought would be missed.  The Senate adjourned Wednesday less than an hour before the deadline, failing to pass a budget during the legislative session for the third consecutive year.  This will affect more than one million residents in Illinois from low-income students to retirees and many others.  With the third straight year without a spending plan, the situation is expected to worsen.  IT will now take a three-fifths supermajority vote in both houses to approve a budget if one is to take effect before the new fiscal year begins on July 1st.

 

(NEWTON)  The director of the Department of Children and Family Services has resigned in the face of the ethics probe and controversy over recent child deaths.  George Sheldon resigned yesterday stating he is returning to Florida.  Sheldon, during his two years at the DCFS, was skilled at obtaining federal funds and creating opportunities for wards who grew up in state custody. However, there is an ongoing ethics probe into some contracts that benefited some associates in Florida and several high-profile child fatalities.  Governor Bruce Rauner says the DCFS General Counsel Lise Spacapan will serve as interim director during the search for a full-time replacement. 

 

(OLNEY)  Illinois poets are being given a chance to show their stuff in a statewide competition – Secretary of State Jesse White says that entry forms are now available for the annual Emerging Writers Competition Gwendolyn Brooks Poetry Award – the competition is open to any Illinois resident at least 18 years of age and the winner will receive $500 in cash, with second and third place also receiving cash – the winning poems will be submitted for publication in various journals – entries must be postmarked by June 30th.

 

(OLNEY)  It is that time of the year again when you see the taming of tigers and hear the roar of laughter.  The Ainad Shriners Circus returns to Southern Illinois for its 50th consecutive year! The circus rolls into action starting this Saturday for the first of twelve performances.  Tigers, elephants, ponies, dogs, clowns and other acts are brought to the three ring stage where heart pounding aerial and high wire acrobats perform.  Performances of the Ainad Circus include: June 3rd and 4th at Belleveille, June 5th at Waterloo, June 6th at Fairfield, June 7th here in Olney, June 8th and 9th at Salem and June 10th and 11th a DuQuoin. Tickets are $15 for adults and $10 for children and can be purchased at participating Southern Illinois Hucks locations, MotoMart Conveneince Stores and Schnucks Supermarkets.  Additional details on the circus can be found online at www.soilshrinercircus.com
 

(NEWTON)  Eight dynamic performances plus two free concerts are planned for the 2017 DuQuoin  State Fair.  Kevin Gordon, State Fair Manager, announced that tickets for the Grandstand concert series will go on sale on June 1st via ticketmaster and the DuQuoin State Fair Box Office. The first of the free concerts is the band of former Chicago Bear defensive lineman call the Chicago 6 on August 25th.  Chris Janson along with High Valley will perform on August 27th.  The Gin Blossoms will take to the Grandstand on August 28th.  Granger Smith joined by Drew Baldridge will perform on August 29th.  Dueling Pianos International will take the stage for an August 30th performance.  Roots & Boots Tour will be stopping at the State Fair on August 31st featuring Sammy Kershaw, Aaron Tippin and Collin Raye.  Switchfoot and Lifehouse will perform on September 1st.  Logan Mize and Chris Cavanaugh will join the Cadillac Three for September 2nd performance at the Grandstand.  The tickets go on sale at the box office or on ticketmaster, today.

 

(OLNEY)  In Monday’s USDA Crop Report – Illinois’ precipitation averaged 0.74 inches, 0.34 inches below normal – there was three full days of field work in Illinois last week – the statewide average temperature was 63.0 degrees, 2.2 degrees below normal – as of Sunday, 93% of the corn and 62% of the soybeans had been planted around the state, plus most of the state’s winter wheat crop is in fair to good condition in spite of all the extra rain  :  farmers in our ten county area surrounding Newton and Olney report almost all of the corn and about three fourths of the soybeans have been planted – farmers are reminded to think “safety first” as the spring planting season continues

 

(NEWTON)  It’s Strawberry Fest on the square in Newton this Friday and Saturday, June 2nd & 3rd.  Started in 1994, the Jasper County Strawberry Fest is a 2 day festival celebrating strawberries in Jasper County.  The festival is two action packed days.  Events start at 3:00 on Friday with science experiments from 3:00 until 5:00, Lip Sync Battle from 5:00 until 8:00 and Moana starting at dusk (around 8:00).  Saturday’s activities begin at 5:30 in the morning with Biscuits and Gravy at the Masonic Lodge.  Pancakes and strawberries at the First Presbyterian Church from 6:00 until 10:00.  Holy Yoga from 7:30 until 8:30 on the North East side of the square.  A pet parade from 9:00 to 10:00 starting at the Grace Methodist Church.  An Animal Show will be from 10:00 until 12 noon.  Lemonade Stand Competition from 11:00 until 1:00.  The Party on the Square from 12:00 to 3:00.  Playdough Sculpting Contest from 1:00 until 2:00, Pins & Pines Painting Party from 2:00 until 4:00.  Story Time with Gigi from 3:00 to 3:30. Brian Madrid the Hypnotist from 3:30 until 5:00.  A bags tournament from 5:00 until 6:00.  The Homemade Ice Cream booth will be open from 10:00 until 8:00.  It all wraps up with the Ash Band from 6:00 until 8:00.  All these great events taking place for Strawberry Fest, in Newton. 

 

(OLNEY) The City of Olney Summer Music Series entitled the Sounds of Summer kicks off the free concert series tonight from 6:00 until 8:00.  Ricochet kicks off the performances tonight at Bower Park.  Bring the family and lawn chairs to enjoy the evening of entertainment.  Bottled water will be available to purchase and concessions will be served tonight as well with the concession proceeds to benefit the Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals.  That is Ricochet kicking of the 2017 Sounds of Summer free concert series tonight at Bower Park.

 

(OLNEY)  The City of Olney would like to inform the public that Chestnut Street, from Camp to Whittle will be closed to traffic all day starting tomorrow, June 2nd as well as Monday June 5th and Tuesday June 6th.  Kitchell Avenue from Chestnut to Elm will also be closed to traffic during those days as well.  The City appreciates your cooperation and patience as they complete the needed work.

 

REMINDERS:
 

   The Big Blue Book Bus will be at the Noble City Park this Thursday, June 1st  from 3:30-4:30 and the Richland County Mall from 5-6pm.  For Richland County Students from Pre K – 8th Grade, No library card or ID necessary.

   Blanks Insurance Day of Recycling is this Friday, June 2nd from 10am to 2pm.  A event to raise funds and awareness for Big Brothers Big Sisters of Richland County.  You can drop off the paper items you would like to have shredded or any electronics you would like to have recycled at Blanks Insurance on whittle avenue in Olney.  For more information contact Allyson at 618-393-2195.

   Fox Creek apartments Cookout at the Olney IGA is this Friday,  June 2nd from 10:30 to 1:30.

   Hospice of SE Illinois 5K Run/Walk is this Saturday, June 3 at 8am at the Richland County Middle School.  Pre-register by stopping by the office, or on the day of event from 7-7:45am.  Registration fee is $20. Complimentary T-shirts for the first 50 individuals that register.

   The Olney American Legion will have a Benefit Fish Fry for the Skip and Kelly Ammerman family, who lost their home in a fire this Friday, June 2nd starting at 5:30pm.

   Team Shelley will be selling Pork burgers and Brats at the Olney IGA, Saturday , June 3rd from 10am-2pm.  All proceeds to the local MS Join The Movement.

   The 2017 Richland County Fair Queen contestants will have a car wash at Wood’s Auto Body on Rt. 130
South in Olney, Saturday, June 3rd from 9am- 2pm.  Donations appreciated.

 

 

May 31, 2017

 

(OLNEY)  Isolated showers and storms continue to hang around the area today.  The weak boundary will move off towards the Ohio River by the evening bringing dry conditions through Thursday. Next rain chances start possibly late Thursday into Friday and the weekend as rain chances increase late Saturday as a shortwave moves eastward.. – stay tuned for continued weather updates.

 

(OLNEY)  In State News – The Illinois General Assembly returns on a crucial final day of the spring session and unfortunately not much closer to a budget agreement than it was when it started in January.  The House and Senate have until 12:01 am on Thursday to adopt an annual spending plan or face the prospect of needing supermajority votes to activate one.  A House committee did position late Tuesday a Seante-approved budget for a floor vote today in which the $37 billion proposal relies on a tax increase of more than $5 billion.

 

(NEWTON)  A House panel has endorsed revising the method for financing public schools in Illinois.  An education appropriations committee voted 13-7 yesterday to advance a proposal to the floor today on this last scheduled day of the spring legislative session.  The legislation gives school districts no less money than they received a year ago, however the revised formula then puts more money into districts with the greatest levels of poverty, special needs students and more.  The debate is the cost of implementing the changes.

 

(OLNEY)  The Illinois State Police announced the results of occupant restraint enforcement patrols (OREP) held in Richland and Lawrence Counties during the month of May.  The OREP provided extra patrol coverage for the ISP officers in order to focus on saving lives by making sure all vehicle occupants were buckled up.  During the patrols, there were 36 safety belt citations, 41 total citations and 132 total written warnings with 0 child restrain citations.  These patrols are utilized to reinforce the occupant protection message by focusing on those who ignore the law. Lives can be saved if people simple “Buckle Up!”

 

(OLNEY)  In this week’s Richland County Rainfall Report, with the recording period ending at 8:00 yesterday morning, it was Decker Township leading the way with eighty-five hundredths of an inch of rain (0.85).  Bonpas Township followed with seven tenths of an inch (0.70), then it was Madison Township with six tenths of an inch (0.60).  Claremont Township followed up with forty-eight hundredths of an inch (0.48) then Noble Township with four tenths of an inch (0.40) and German Township with thirty-five hundredths of an inch of rain (0.35).  The Farm Bureau Office in Olney recorded twenty five hundredths of an inch (0.25) the both Denver and Preston Townships recorded two tenths of an inch of rain (0.20).  Here at our WVLN-WSEI National Weather Service Weather Station, at the south edge of Olney, we measured twenty-seven hundredths of an inch (0.27) of rain over the recording period.  Again, a big thank you to all of those helping with the recording of the rainfall reports.
 

(NEWTON)  Eight dynamic performances plus two free concerts are planned for the 2017 DuQuoin  State Fair.  Kevin Gordon, State Fair Manager, announced that tickets for the Grandstand concert series will go on sale on June 1st via ticketmaster and the DuQuoin State Fair Box Office. The first of the free concerts is the band of former Chicago Bear defensive lineman call the Chicago 6 on August 25th.  Chris Janson along with High Valley will perform on August 27th.  The Gin Blossoms will take to the Grandstand on August 28th.  Granger Smith joined by Drew Baldridge will perform on August 29th.  Dueling Pianos International will take the stage for an August 30th performance.  Roots & Boots Tour will be stopping at the State Fair on August 31st featuring Sammy Kershaw, Aaron Tippin and Collin Raye.  Switchfoot and Lifehouse will perform on September 1st.  Logan Mize and Chris Cavanaugh will join the Cadillac Three for September 2nd performance at the Grandstand. 

 

(OLNEY)  Curbside recycling schedules for the City of Olney will not be effected by the Memorial Day Holiday, however Republic Services will observe the holiday today ,  meaning trash collection will be one day later than normal this week, Mondays on Tuesday, Tuesdays on Wednesday and so on and so forth.

 

(NEWTON)  It’s Strawberry Fest on the square in Newton this Friday and Saturday, June 2nd & 3rd.  Started in 1994, the Jasper County Strawberry Fest is a 2 day festival celebrating strawberries in Jasper County.  The festival is two action packed days of music, inflatables, children’s games, a free movie on the square, crafts, painting’s, homemade ice cream and great food.   For more information on times and events, log onto
Jasperchamber.com 

 

(OLNEY) The City of Olney Summer Music Series is set to kick off this week, Thursday June 1st, from 6:00 until 8:00 at Bower Park, all weather permitting.  Performances start with Ricochet performing on the first night with other performances by Thing-a-ma-Jug Band, Jake Hoult & Mikayla Muprhy, Moneka Fullup, Garret Biggs, Guy Ash, Heather & Marty, and Whiskey  Bend.  That is the City of Olney’s Summer Music Series, all getting started next Thursday at 6:00 with Ricochet.

 


REMINDERS:
 

  The Cummins Municipal Band will begin it’s summer concert season this  week on Wednesday, May 31st at 7:30.  It will be located at the Olney City Park and open to the public – all are invited

   The Friends of Olney, a group of individuals and businesses, desiring to work together to see the community thrive, will meet on Wednesdays at Ophelia’s Cup at 8:00 – all are invited to stop by

   The Big Blue Book Bus will be at the Noble City Park this Thursday, June 1st  from 3:30-4:30 and the Richland County Mall from 5-6pm.  For Richland County Students from Pre K – 8th Grade, No library card or ID necessary.

   Blanks Insurance Day of Recycling is this Friday, June 2nd from 10am to 2pm.  A event to raise funds and awareness for Big Brothers Big Sisters of Richland County.  You can drop off the paper items you would like to have shredded or any electronics you would like to have recycled at Blanks Insurance on whittle avenue in Olney.  For more information contact Allyson at 618-393-2195.

   Fox Creek apartments Cookout at the Olney IGA is this Friday,  June 2nd from 10:30 to 1:30.

   Hospice of SE Illinois 5K Run/Walk is this Saturday, June 3 at 8am at the Richland County Middle School.  Pre-register by stopping by the office, or on the day of event from 7-7:45am.  Registration fee is $20. Complimentary T-shirts for the first 50 individuals that register.

   The Olney American Legion will have a Benefit Fish Fry for the Skip and Kelly Ammerman family, who lost their home in a fire this Friday, June 2nd starting at 5:30pm.

   Team Shelley will be selling Pork burgers and Brats at the Olney IGA, Saturday , June 3rd from 10am-2pm.  All proceeds to the local MS Join The Movement.

   The 2017 Richland County Fair Queen contestants will have a car wash at Wood’s Auto Body on Rt. 130
South in Olney, Saturday, June 3rd from 9am- 2pm.  Donations appreciated