Shrek the Musical Showing Now At Little Theatre

•June 8, 2016•

By Brynna Sentel
For the News Progress

Kick off your Summer with Shrek the Musical.

Shrek the Musical is showing in Sullivan’s The Little Theatre on the Square through Sunday, June 12.

This delightful spin off of the Oscar-winning DreamWorks Animation film is a must see for the whole family.

Shrek the Musical follows a rare duo of a humorous donkey and an angry ogre. This long and difficult journey to ultimately save their swamp will leave the audience thinking, “What the Shrek Just Happened?”.  Read More

Wilborn Creek Road Reopens

Photo by Mike Brothers Progress is underway on straightening Wilborn Creek Road as part of the county’s road rehabilitation project. Above Moultrie County employees check measurements at the straightening site. The project is expected completion by August.

Photo by Mike Brothers
Progress is underway on straightening Wilborn Creek Road as part of the county’s road rehabilitation project. Above Moultrie County employees check measurements at the straightening site. The project is expected completion by August.

Project Makes Progress

•June 8, 2016•

County Highway engineer Jeff Birch reported Wilborn Creek road is reopened following culvert replacements as part of the overall $1.8 million improvement project.

Birch told members of the Moultrie County Road and Bridge Committee last week that preparations to recycle should take up to four days in early July.

Target date for project completion, which includes a new transition curve on the road south of CR1150N, is August 15.

The Moultrie County Highway Department  road rehabilitation project to improve the roadway smoothness and safety on (Wilborn Creek Road, CR 625E) began on May 2. Read More

A Respectful Thank You to The Fallen

Photo by Mike Brothers Greenhill Cemetery Memorial Day program speaker Rita Florey expressed gratitude to those who have served. Post #68 Commander Bob Sims, Charles Bragg and the Honor Guard are in the background.

Photo by Mike Brothers
Greenhill Cemetery Memorial Day program speaker Rita Florey expressed gratitude to those who have served. Post #68 Commander Bob Sims, Charles Bragg and the Honor Guard are in the background.

•June 1, 2016•

Thanks to those who gave their lives fighting for America.

It was the expression of Taps as Memorial Day Services ended at Greenhill Cemetery in Sullivan on Sunday morning.

American Legion Post #68 Honor Guard, Auxiliary and Lincoln Trails Council Boy Scouts marched from the Moultrie County Courthouse to the cemetery with Sullivan Police Dept. escort.

Sullivan High School band, directed by Brock Feece opened the 8 a.m. ceremony with the Star Spangled Banner.

Rita Florey, founder of the present day Sullivan’s Memorial Celebration emphasized those who stepped forward to serve, didn’t do it for glory, but for a greater cause.

A cause and freedom we can enjoy because of the price they paid.

“Those who selflessly served exemplify patriotism at its core,” Florey said of the fallen. “This is the highest form of citizenship that deserves our respect and gratitude.”

She told the crowd gathered in the morning sun about a prisoner of war in North Vietnam in 1967.

Mike was a 17 year old from Selma, Alabama who had enlisted in the Navy and was captured.  Read More

DMH Honors Founder Sue Hagaman in Bethany

Photo by Mike Brothers DMH CEO and President Tim Stone places a wreath on Sue Hagaman’s grave.

Photo by Mike Brothers
DMH CEO and President Tim Stone places a wreath on Sue Hagaman’s grave.

•June 1, 2016•

Sue Hagaman of Bethany embarked on a 15 year mission in 1901 that developed into Decatur Memorial Hospital of today. On Friday, Mary 27 DMH President and CEO Tim Stone placed a wreath on Mrs. Hagaman’s grave site at Marrowbone Township Cemetery in observation of the hospital’s 100th anniversary.

Julie Moore introduced Stone to the Bethany gathering that included mayor Bill Ashley, Marrowbone township representatives, family, friends former nurses and DMH employees.

Stone told a crowd during the 4:30 p.m. commemoration that Hagaman’s vision of a place where women could safely give birth actually is what gave birth to Decatur’s hospital.

“It started with the dream of a woman who saw a need,” Stone said. “She started having bake sales, which became the seed for capital to build Decatur’s hospital.”  Read More

Okaw Valley Grads Honored

Photo by RR Best Dylan Park adjusts his cap before Okaw Valley High School graduation ceremonies in Bethany Sunday, May 29. Thirty three graduates received diplomas during the outdoor ceremony.      PTO Provides         Help with Funding     The continued underfunding of schools in Illinois is no secret.  Fortunately, the Sullivan PTO has stepped up its efforts to provide opportunities for the students of Sullivan Elementary School.

Photo by RR Best
Dylan Park adjusts his cap before Okaw Valley High School graduation ceremonies in Bethany Sunday, May 29. Thirty three graduates received diplomas during the outdoor ceremony. PTO Provides
Help with Funding
The continued underfunding of schools in Illinois is no secret. Fortunately, the Sullivan PTO has stepped up its efforts to provide opportunities for the students of Sullivan Elementary School.

•June 1, 2016•

Seventy five students were recognized with Okaw Valley High School Awards prior to graduation.

Thirty-three OVHS graduates gathered under sunny skies in Bethany at 2 p.m. Sunday, May 29 for commencement.

Okaw Valley High School recognized more than 75 students for their academic achievement and awarded several scholarships May 11. Eastern Illinois University scholarship was presented to senior Devan Nave, Lake Land College presented scholarships to Nicole Miller, Gretchen Macklin, and Adam Bricker.

Other scholarships presented include the Toby J Jump Memorial to Alex Martin, George A Sentel Lodge #764 to Devon Meredith, Jackson Masonic Lodge to Nicole Miller, American Red Cross to Charli Uhlrich, Okaw Valley Education Association to Nicole Miller, Bethany Sons of the American Legion to Race Underwood, Angela Marie Diss Memorial to Nicole Miller, Community Service to Charli Uhlrich, Overlot Memorial to Nicole Miller, Psi Iota Xi winners Charli Uhlrich and Race Underwood, OV Booster to Alex Martin and Charli Uhlrich. Receiving the Eastern Star Scholarship was Madison Fox, and Findlay Fireman’s Association recipients Charli Uhlrich and Robbie Stiner. Other special recognition awards were presented to Alex Martin and Nicole Miller for LOVC Student Athletes as well as Army Scholar Athletes. Brianna Creviston was recognized as a delegate at Youth Day to Springfield and Gretchen Macklin received the DAR award. Gretchen Macklin, Alex Martin, Nicole Miller, Nick Tipsword, and Charli Uhlrich were honored as Illinois State Scholars. Receiving honors as Heartland Students of the Quarter were Jasmine Guzzie, Cole Thompson, Preston Gibbons, and Brianna Clardy. Those students receiving perfect attendance for the entire year were Quinn Brooks, Tyus Brooks, Taylor Coleman, Race Underwood, Shelby Hagerman, Preston Gibbons, and Isabella Benning. Sophie Zimmerman received the volunteer of the year award from the Heartland Mini Hooves.  Gretchen Macklin, Alex Martin, Nicole Miller, Charli Uhlrich, and Race Underwood received recognition from the CBAI.   Read More

Challenged Runner on Inspirational Trip

Photo by Mike Brothers Jeff Hobbs’ journey to the Chicago Marathon inspires Sullivan students during recent assembly.

Photo by Mike Brothers
Jeff Hobbs’ journey to the Chicago Marathon inspires Sullivan students during recent assembly.

•May 25, 2016•

By Mike Brothers

Sullivan High School principal Erik Young saw Jeff Hobbs running in a high school cross country meet 18 years ago and was inspired.

Hobbs has Spastic Cerebral Palsy (Quadriplegia) and is a runner who has already overcome more obstacles than you can imagine. Now he  is training to run the Chicago Marathon.

Hobbs told Sullivan High School students his story of determination during an assembly May 9.

His attempt to run the 26.2 mile Chicago Marathon in 2014 ended short with severe damage to tendons and stress fractures to his feet.

With the help of special shoes and training on an ultra gravity treadmill his hope to run is rekindled.

Hobbs’ big hope is to be the first person with Quadriplegia to ever finish the Chicago Marathon which celebrates its 39th anniversary this October. Read More

A Day at the Wax Museum

Photo by Mike Brothers Babe Ruth is ready to hit as Jake Stewart.

Photo by Mike Brothers
Babe Ruth is ready to hit as Jake Stewart. Click the photo for the photo page.

•May 25, 2016•

The fourth grade wax museum at Sullivan Elementary School displayed a mix of pop culture and history Wednesday, May 11.

Students in the three fourth grade classes of Kurt Friese, Drew Campbell and Kay Lehman spent the past two months learning about characters from history and pop culture.

Inside the elementary school gymnasium on Wednesday those students became the characters they were studying.

“Students were given a month to select their character,” said Kay Lehman, noting they had to make the case for their character having an influence on history before approval was given.

Social studies help provide many of the characters. “Those choosing pop culture characters had to show how they impacted America,” Lehman explained.

This is the third year for the wax museum, and students added an iPod dimension to their character displays. Read More

Yost Trial Date Set

•May 25, 2016•

The Michael Yost jury trial begins at 9 a.m. August 1 in the Moultrie County Courthouse.

Yost, 42, is charged with the March 5, 2015 death of Sheri Randall, 34, of Sullivan and was not present for the status hearing May 24.

Public defender Brad Rau, State’s Attorney Jeremy Richey and special prosecutor Ed Parkinson appeared before Chief Judge Dan L. Flannell set August 1 as the first day for jury selection and discussed a letter from Yost, complaining of jail conditions.

Directing state’s attorney Richey and Yost’s attorney Rau to discuss the complaint with sheriff Chris Sims, Judge Flannell pointed out this was the second complaint made by the Moultrie County inmate. Read More

New Water and Sewer Rates Ahead for Lovington Residents

•May 25, 2016•

Lovington water and sewer rates are increasing in an effort to cover production and provide improvements to the system.

Village board members unanimously approved the ordinance with new rates during the April meeting.

The water rate increases by 50 cents for the first 1000 gallons with no cost change for additional 1000 gallons. Sewer rates increase to $4.50 first 1000 gallons with a 50 cent charge for each additional 1000 gallons. A $5 reserve fund for both water and sewer was added with no SSM change.

Lovington Park and Recreation week is Monday, June 6 through Friday, June 10 and received $700 from the village. Jennifer Peck appeared before the board explaining the program was starting from scratch so everything from supplies to totes for storage are needed. The room next to the clerk /treasurer’s office at the village hall is being cleared for park recreation storage space. Peck related that approximately 40 Lovington children are planning to participate in the weeklong event. Lunches will be provided by Fun in the Sun every day but Friday which is a Little Caesar’s Pizza party. Read More

Good Weather for Graduation in Sullivan

Photo by Mike Brothers Pomp and Circumstance-Sullivan High School seniors Evan Baker holding the flag and Ben Berner line up during the processional Sunday. It was the 138th high school commencement held at 5 p.m. May 15 on the high school football field.

Photo by Mike Brothers
Pomp and Circumstance-Sullivan High School seniors Evan Baker holding the flag and Ben Berner line up during the processional Sunday. It was the 138th high school commencement held at 5 p.m. May 15 on the high school football field.

•May 18, 2016•

The weather blessed Sullivan High School with outdoor graduation ceremonies at 5 p.m. Sunday with 83 seniors receiving diplomas.

District 300 board president Steve Poland announced the salutatorian Zane Uphoff and valedictorian Emily Stutzman.

In her valedictory address Stutzman recalled arriving at Sullivan High School as a new student.

“When I arrived here three years ago, I was amazed how quickly news travels,” she began, “I wasn’t used to everyone knowing everyone.”

She explained the dread she felt in the beginning was relieved when unfamiliar classmates quickly became friends. “Now I’m not quite ready to leave.”

“How we see others is a reflection of how we see ourselves,” Stutzman said, pointing out the friends and memories of high school are priceless.

“Ours is a bright, untouched future, where the possibilities are endless,” she continued, encouraging her classmates to work for their dreams. Read More