Wilborn Creek Road Project Rehab Set for Early May

Photo by Mike Brothers This  Wilborn Creek Road crossroads will be realigned for safety to remove a sudden jog which can catch drivers by surprise as part of the summer project.

Photo by Mike Brothers
This Wilborn Creek Road crossroads will be realigned for safety to remove a sudden jog which can catch drivers by surprise as part of the summer project.

•April 20, 2016•

The Moultrie County Highway Department is announcing a road rehabilitation project to improve the roadway smoothness and safety on County 5/16 (Wilborn Creek Road, CR 625E).

Work is tentatively scheduled to begin May 2 and is anticipated to be completed in September.

The project begins south of the Illinois Central Railroad at Illinois Route 121 and extends southward approximately 3.7 miles.

Included is the replacement of across road culverts (which will cause periodic road closures), pavement removal and replacement south of the Wilborn Creek Access Road. Read More

For Those Who Served Before Them

Photo by Mike Brothers Sullivan American Legion Post 68 Color Guard from left: James Darnell, George Selby, Bob Sims, Ed Riley, Charles Bragg, Mike Gross, (the Memorial) then Mike Black, Mac Bond, Mike Keown, Jon Garvin, Marty Reynolds, Richard Murphy and Nathan Selby.

Photo by Mike Brothers
Sullivan American Legion Post 68 Color Guard from left: James Darnell, George Selby, Bob Sims, Ed Riley, Charles Bragg, Mike Gross, (the Memorial) then Mike Black, Mac Bond, Mike Keown, Jon Garvin, Marty Reynolds, Richard Murphy and Nathan Selby.

•April 13, 2016•

By Mike Brothers

They perform their duty, then return to daily routines: the Sullivan American Legion Post 68 Color Guard has always been there.

Since January 1, the Color Guard has put on their uniforms, grabbed their rifles and gathered their flags to perform military rites for 11 of their brothers and sisters in arms who have passed away so far this year.

What is becoming a challenge for the American Legion Color Guard now, with 23 active members, is getting others to join the group,

Nathan Selby is a 27-year-old father of a three-year old daughter, who works for ADM in Decatur and is a volunteer with the Sullivan Fire Dept.

Selby is an Army veteran of Afghanistan who has found the time to be a Color Guard. “I remember how those who came back from Vietnam were mistreated,” Selby said, noting when he returned from his Army tour, he wanted to get involved.

“What military rites show is respect for those who came before us,” he concluded.

Marty Reynolds is 75 and retired from the Air Force along with his wife who is an active American Legion member. He is responsible for flag presentation to the survivors, which signals the 21 gun salute. Read More

Road to Enhanced 9-1-1 Encounters Obstacles

•April 13, 2016•

By Mike Brothers

Although Coles-Moultrie enhanced 9-1-1 service is in the home stretch the path has contained some obstacles.

Moultrie County Board Public Health and Safety Committee found out the $45,000 the county spent preparing for the new emergency services network would not be reimbursed by the Statewide 911 Bureau that is now a division of the Illinois State Police.

David Bowers of Lovington, a state 9-1-1 committee member since 1976, appealed to the state on behalf of Moultrie County. He learned that since Moultrie is not yet an authorized 9-1-1 provider, the $45,000 isn’t eligible for reimbursement.

Bowers presented the question of appealing Moultrie County’s costs of the local line and forwarded 9-1-1 calls over the long distance network to Marci Elliott of the ISP Statewide Bureau. Read More

Covington Kids Jump

Photo furnished Lovington Kids Jump Lovington Grade School raised $3,011 dollars this year for Jump Rope for Heart. That was well over the school goal of $2,000. Kelly Martina’s kindergarten class raised the most money with $816. Left to right front row: Norma Mendoza, Randi Tedrick, Tylan Zander, Maddox Crum, Jansen Burnett, Kade Ballinger, Kit Kauffman, Elizabeth Fitzgerald, Bella Menna, Mya Bowman. Back row: Zebediah Peck, Jonah Burket, Aiden Erixon, Skyler Mitchell, Lyla Sutton, Gabriel Devenbaugh, Cannon Doggett.The top individual fundraiser was fifth grader Chloe Franklin who raised $250.

Photo furnished
Lovington Kids Jump
Lovington Grade School raised $3,011 dollars this year for Jump Rope for Heart. That was well over the school goal of $2,000. Kelly Martina’s kindergarten class raised the most money with $816. Left to right front row: Norma Mendoza, Randi Tedrick, Tylan Zander, Maddox Crum, Jansen Burnett, Kade Ballinger, Kit Kauffman, Elizabeth Fitzgerald, Bella Menna, Mya Bowman. Back row: Zebediah Peck, Jonah Burket, Aiden Erixon, Skyler Mitchell, Lyla Sutton, Gabriel Devenbaugh, Cannon Doggett.The top individual fundraiser was fifth grader Chloe Franklin who raised $250.

Diary of The Trip to Cuba

•April 13, 2016•

By Jose Pound
For the News Progress

Sunday, 13 March – Day 1.

Now I’ll relate some of our daily activities in Cuba beginning with our arrival at Jose Marti Airport in Havana via a chartered Aruba Airline flight (both going to and coming home from Cuba). Jose Marti is a national hero, poet of the Cuban people emphasizing “freedom” and godfather of current Cuban political life. His is the main statue in Revolutionary Square in center of Havana, where both Pope Francis and President Obama spoke to huge crowds of Cubans. It reminded me of a smaller version of Tiananmen Square in Beijing China…surrounded by government ministries.

On our arrival, after the 45 minute flight from Miami, the airport terminal was jammed with people, without much control as where we were to go. Plus it was hot (in the 80s) and humid like a summertime greenhouse without air conditioning. The exit lounge at the airport on our return home was “somewhat” air conditioned. Finding our luggage after arrival from Miami was a two hour event, which was a real strain on your disposition. However, when we all had our luggage, we were directed to a “new” Chinese made luxury bus, which served us well for the next seven days plus it was delightfully air conditioned. There were numerous antique (50s) vintage cars in the airport parking lots. We soon learned that these cars have been carefully maintained/rebuilt as Cuban taxis.

Cuba is being inundated with US visitors…like us. We were there on a People to People program based on regulations of the US Department of Treasury. A Road Scholar contact person told me Cuba is their most sought after travel destination of late. After our experience, I understand why. Read More

Lovington Plans Summer Celebration

•April 13, 2016•

The Lovington Village Board met March 14 agreeing to participate in a village celebration.

Carol Smith of the Lovington Community Club, Alumni Association and Revitalization organizations requested the village celebration for June 17 and 18.

Smith presented planned activities for the event and asked the village to provide two porta potties, police supervision during the parade, blocking streets downtown for vendors and electricity for those vendors.

Board members present expressed no problems with those requests. Read More

Sullivan Receives VFW Gift

Eric Kenney photo Sullivan Receives VFW Gift VFW # 6410 Commander, Russell Craig, presented park commissioner Mike Mossman and city of Sullivan mayor Ann Short with a $1000.00 grant from the VFW Foundation which is for the Wyman Park Summer Youth Recreation Program. The presentation was made during the March 28 Sullivan City Council meeting.

Eric Kenney photo
Sullivan Receives VFW Gift
VFW # 6410 Commander, Russell Craig, presented park commissioner Mike Mossman and city of Sullivan mayor Ann Short with a $1000.00 grant from the VFW Foundation which is for the Wyman Park Summer Youth Recreation Program. The presentation was made during the March 28 Sullivan City Council meeting.

ALAH Schools Turn to the Internet for Curriculum

•April 13, 2016•

By Ariana Cherry
For the News Progress

The way students learn keeps changing through the years-especially as technology advances and other opportunities become available.

While staff and administrators have felt the effects from the financial distress, they have learned how to be more creative when it comes to learning and how to take advantage of resources that are already out there.

The teachers of Arthur-Lovington/Atwood-Hammond School district looked to the internet for new learning materials that meet the new Common Core standards. Atwood-Hammond first grade teacher Vanessa Davis was part of the literacy committee that helped the district find curriculum so all of the schools could align curricula when the consolidation took place.

“When we began our search, there weren’t a lot of reliable and affordable resources out there,” Davis began. “With declining funding from the state, teachers were left to sort of “figure it out” on their own, and that meant finding or creating our own materials.”

A website that ALAH elementary and junior high teachers are taking advantage of is EngageNY.org. EngageNY offers kindergarten through grade 12 curriculum in English language, arts and mathematics. All of the learning materials on the website are free to use; although some of the teachers have purchased other accessories and books to enhance the lessons.  Read More

Broken Down Springfield Bus Leads to Sullivan Pizza Party

•April 13, 2016•

What looked like a long boring wait for a busload of students from Springfield turned into a pizza party at Sullivan Civic Center last week.

It all started when a charter bus carrying 35 students from Grant Middle School broke down about 3 p.m. next to Jim Warren Auto Sales.

“Jim Warren called me when he saw those kids waiting around the broken bus,” Sullivan police chief John Love said. “Officers sent to the scene learned it could be several hours before another bus could be sent for the students.”

Love said he made two calls; the first to Sullivan school district where director of transportation Kevin Landrus immediately sent a Sullivan School bus for the students.

“The replacement bus was coming from Jacksonville, and there was going to be about a 4 hour wait/delay,” Landrus began.

“I sent Michael Puyear, employee within the transportation department of Sullivan Schools out to pick them up and we shuttled them to the Civic Center.”

“I can’t imagine trying to keep 35 middle school aged kids occupied for four hours, let alone on a bus sitting on the side of the road. We were glad to do our part and offer assistance to the kids and adults on board,” he concluded. Read More

Shrine Club Presented with Donation

 Photo furnished Shrine Club Presented with Donation The Tri-County Shrine Club was presented a donation from the Arthur-Lovington/Atwood-Hammond ugly sweater contest held during the holidays. Shrine Club president Jeremy Malin and ALAH freshman Emma Harris presented the donation to Noble Ed Camacho, Potentate of Ansar Shrine Temple in Springfield at Yoder’s Country Kitchen in Arthur. This is the second year ALAH has donated the ugly sweater donations to the Shriner’s Crippled Children’s Hospital in St. Louis. Participants donated $1 for each ugly sweater vote to raise funds. Harris is the daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Stan Harris of Atwood. Stan Harris is the Second Ceremonial Master of Ansar Temple.

Photo furnished
Shrine Club Presented with Donation
The Tri-County Shrine Club was presented a donation from the Arthur-Lovington/Atwood-Hammond ugly sweater contest held during the holidays. Shrine Club president Jeremy Malin and ALAH freshman Emma Harris presented the donation to Noble Ed Camacho, Potentate of Ansar Shrine Temple in Springfield at Yoder’s Country Kitchen in Arthur. This is the second year ALAH has donated the ugly sweater donations to the Shriner’s Crippled Children’s Hospital in St. Louis. Participants donated $1 for each ugly sweater vote to raise funds. Harris is the daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Stan Harris of Atwood. Stan Harris is the Second Ceremonial Master of Ansar Temple.