A Look Back at Moultrie’s Contribution

Provided by the Moultrie County Historical Society Pictured is the last gathering of Moultrie County Civil War veterans. The place and date, however, are not known.

Provided by the Moultrie County Historical Society
Pictured is the last gathering of Moultrie County Civil War veterans. The place and date, however, are not known.

July 2, 2014

County’s men fought in Civil War’s largest battles

by Tom Emery

Illinois supplied the fourth-highest number of men to the Union during the Civil War, sending some 259,000 men to the Northern cause. An estimated 773 of them came from Moultrie County, whose men fought with valor in some of the war’s most significant battles.

Moultrie County men fought in some of the state’s top regiments and in the war’s largest battles.

Company E of the 21st Illinois Infantry was predominately a Moultrie County company, which had the distinction of serving under Ulysses S. Grant in his first major field commission.  Read More

Saunders Retires as Lovington Library Director

June 25, 2014

Barlow to take over July 1

by Ariana Cherry
Reporting in Lovington

A library can often be the face and heart of a community– a place of knowledge, entertainment and social activities. And the face who represents a library plays a very vital role. Library directors are not just responsible for the books-but they are the ones who spend time with the patrons to develop personal relationships. From the stream of people who attended Lovington Library’s open house Saturday for retiring director Suzy Saunders, it was clear that there were plenty of those relationships built. Read More

Little Theatre Actor Pops Big Question on Stage 

Photo by Keith Stewart Little Theatre actor John McAvaney looks on happily after proposing to his longtime girlfriend Kerry Maloney following a performance of “42nd Street” Saturday, June 14.

Photo by Keith Stewart
Little Theatre actor John McAvaney looks on happily after proposing to his longtime girlfriend Kerry Maloney following a performance of “42nd Street” Saturday, June 14.

June 25, 2014

Audience gets engagement as encore

By Mallory Murphy
Sullivan Reporter

A separate production of its own took place following the finale of “42nd Street” a week ago Saturday at The Little Theatre On The Square — a surprise wedding proposal onstage from returning New York actor, John McAvaney to longtime girlfriend, Kerry Maloney.

McAvaney, who played the role of Bert Berry in “42nd Street,” is currently performing in his eighth production at The Little Theatre and considers Sullivan to be his second home. Read More

St. Isidore Celebrates 150 Years with Special Mass

June 11, 2014

More than 200 attend

Submitted by
David McCabe

Over 150 years ago, 16 Irish Catholic immigrant families settled in what is now Dora Township, Moultrie County and what would eventually be home to St. Isidore Church. A week ago Sunday, hundreds attended a special Mass to recognize the sesquicentennial.

Submitted Pictured is a portion of those who attended the celebratory mass at St. Isidore May 25.

Submitted
Pictured is a portion of those who attended the celebratory mass at St. Isidore May 25.

Read More

Bringing to Life Research, History, and Heroes

Photo by Keith Stewart Sullivan fourth grader Ben Bushue portrays Davy Crockett during the live wax museum project at Sullivan Elementary.

Photo by Keith Stewart
Sullivan fourth grader Ben Bushue portrays Davy Crockett during the live wax museum project at Sullivan Elementary.

Three week project culminates with live wax museum at SES

by Keith Stewart
keith@newsprogress.com

A week before school was set to let out for summer, Sullivan Elementary School was full of motley and miniature versions of both past and present historical and cultural figures as fourth grade students did their best to imitate an individual of whom they based a three week research project.

“This project was a huge undertaking for our students,” said fourth grade teacher Nichole Hendry. “In the five years I’ve been here it was the largest research and writing project that our fourth grade class has been asked to do.”

From Sacagawea, to Davy Crockett, to Michael Jackson, Michael Jordan, and former President Dwight D. Eisenhower, the SES gymnasium that Thursday was alive with brief one to three minute speeches detailing childhoods, marriages, and successes from dozens of the world’s most historically important figures. Read More

No More Pining Away at OVMS

Photo by RR Best Pictured are those who volunteered to replace the treeline at Okaw Valley Middle School two weeks ago. From left to right: Roger Kirkwood, Lillian Beckett, Nannette Ramsey, and Mike Cummins.

Photo by RR Best
Pictured are those who volunteered to replace the treeline at Okaw Valley Middle School two weeks ago. From left to right: Roger Kirkwood, Lillian Beckett, Nannette Ramsey, and Mike Cummins.

Tree donation replaces those removed last year

by Jake Dilley
Reporting in Findlay

Okay Valley Middle School received a donation from the Findlay Planning Committee two weeks ago in the form of 50 white pine trees.

With a $250 donation to the project from the Findlay Planning Committee and trees from Roger Kirkwood, the task was underway. The original windbreak, planted in 1943, had contracted a disease last year. With the trees literally falling over, they had to be cut down. Mike Cummins, the Okay Valley Middle School principal, was then approached by Kirkwood with a proposal on the new windbreak. 

“Mike was really receptive,” said Kirkwood. “Everything has gone smoothly. Phil Ozier brought in his stump grinder to take care of all the debris after the trees were cut down. Then with the help of Suzi Nolan and Carl Spencer, we got 50 white pine trees in the ground. I was happy to help.” Read More

Army Veteran Gets Surprise Thank You Saturday

Submitted Pictured, center, is Tosha Duzan, an Arthur native and soldier of 22 years who after speaking to a crowd at Church House Treasures in Bethany was surprised with gifts as a thank you for her service.

Submitted
Pictured, center, is Tosha Duzan, an Arthur native and soldier of 22 years who after speaking to a crowd at Church House Treasures in Bethany was surprised with gifts as a thank you for her service.

Arthur native attends, thinking it just a speaking engagement

by Jake Dilley
Reporting in Bethany

With the sun shining, the churchyard and sanctuary festooned in star-spangled ribbons and flowers and service and awareness flags dancing around in the breeze, this was the alluring scene set before  those in attendance Saturday at Natalie Elliott’s Thank-A-Veteran program held at Church House Treasures in Bethany.  Read More

Perkins Nationally Recognized For Classroom Reading Progress

Submitted Pictured is Arthur second grade teacher Kirsten Perkins and her class, which was recently recognized for outstanding achievements in reading. Front Row (left to right) Jesus Corona,  Amy Otto, Selene Rohr, Samantha VanMeter, and Jaydon Yoder. Back Row (left to right) Malachi Gutierrez, Chris Miller, Hunter Grant, Isaiah Sawyer, Evanger Wiley, Ayla Condill, Kayden Bontrager, and Kirsten Perkins. Not Pictured: Darren Miller, Martha Herschberger, Lacey Knox, and Jaylon Herschberger.

Submitted
Pictured is Arthur second grade teacher Kirsten Perkins and her class, which was recently recognized for outstanding achievements in reading. Front Row (left to right) Jesus Corona, Amy Otto, Selene Rohr, Samantha VanMeter, and Jaydon Yoder. Back Row (left to right) Malachi Gutierrez, Chris Miller, Hunter Grant, Isaiah Sawyer, Evanger Wiley, Ayla Condill, Kayden Bontrager, and Kirsten Perkins.
Not Pictured: Darren Miller, Martha Herschberger, Lacey Knox, and Jaylon Herschberger.

Second grade teacher’s savvy use of software helps students be more proficient readers

by Ariana Cherry
Arthur Reporter

While reading can open up doors to virtually any type of world, it also can lead down a path to a rewarding future. Arthur Elementary School second grade teacher, Kirsten Perkins, is instilling the passion of reading and helping her students set goals that will help them excel in the future by using a program known as Renaissance Learning, a cloud-based educational software based in Wisconsin Rapids, Wisconsin that is used for benchmark testing and supplementary reading assessment. Another subsection of the software, widely known as The Accelerated Reader Program, is also implemented by the school. By using Renaissance Learning, teachers can personalize reading habits and monitor students’ comprehension to optimize growth. Read More

Sullivan Family Farm Earns 150 Year Status

Photo by Keith Stewart Daniel Terzo Jr. stands next to the official placard designating his family farm a sesquicentenial farm, located off of Patterson Road in Sullivan.

Photo by Keith Stewart
Daniel Terzo Jr. stands next to the official placard designating his family farm a sesquicentenial farm, located off of Patterson Road in Sullivan.

Oldest family farm on record in Moultrie at 178 years

by Keith Stewart
keith@newsprogress.com

James Patterson, along with his son James and his grandson Levi, first came to Sullivan in 1832. Six years later, the family farm was established through a land grant just off of present-day Patterson road (no coincidence). Through eight generations the farm stayed in the family–all 178 years–eventually finding its way to Daniel Terzo Jr. and sister Leslie Coretti, the great grandchildren, five times over, of the first James Patterson. And more recently, in light of this fact, the family farm was honored through the Illinois Department of Agriculture sesquicentennial farm program. Read More

One Big Catch

Submitted Nathan Riley is seen with his 20 inch long 5-pound, 7-ounce large-mouth bass, which he caught in Wyman Lake in March.

Submitted
Nathan Riley is seen with his 20 inch long 5-pound, 7-ounce large-mouth bass, which he caught in Wyman Lake in March.

20 inch, 5lb large-mouth caught out of Wyman

by Keith Stewart
keith@newsprogress.com

Nathan Riley is 12 years old. He’s been fishing for only a couple years. He is mostly self-trained too, having watched dozens of YouTube videos on the sport. And it was he who was by himself at little ol’ Wyman Lake when he supposedly caught a 20-inch, 5-pound., 7-ounce large mouth bass on a cold March morning.

Sounds a little fishy.

Perhaps some doubt could, in fact, be cast if there wasn’t a photo or two of the Sullivan middle schooler showing off his fresh catch. His friends at school can’t deny it–Riley has shown them photos on his cellphone. It’s the reel-deal.

Bad fishing puns aside, Riley’s catch is the biggest of his life so far and a young life at that.

He first got into fishing after seeing the line and reel for the first time. Read More