Studio for Young Dancers

Photo by Mike Brothers Studio for Young Dancers Dancers with Miss Melissa’s new studio are meeting at the First United Methodist Church in Sullivan until the permanent location downtown is completed. Above (from left) Emily Tilton, Chloe Jensen and Ava and Layla Corley go through their routine. See Ariana Cherry’s story on page 5.

Photo by Mike Brothers
Studio for Young Dancers
Dancers with Miss Melissa’s new studio are meeting at the First United Methodist Church in Sullivan until the permanent location downtown is completed. Above (from left) Emily Tilton, Chloe Jensen and Ava and Layla Corley go through their routine. See Ariana Cherry’s story on page 5.

Washington Street Plaza For a Place to Relax Downtown

Photo by Mike Brothers Washington Street Plaza is Sullivan Chamber and Economic Development’s newest project, east of the Little Theatre, offers visitors a place to relax before and after shows or while strolling around the square.  Above SCED’s Stepheny McMahon and Laurrie Minor are enjoying the plaza along with The Little Theatre’s Brenda Abbott, John Stephens, Nikki Schlieker and Lori Harbaugh.

Photo by Mike Brothers
Washington Street Plaza is Sullivan Chamber and Economic Development’s newest project, east of the Little Theatre, offers visitors a place to relax before and after shows or while strolling around the square. Above SCED’s Stepheny McMahon and Laurrie Minor are enjoying the plaza along with The Little Theatre’s Brenda Abbott, John Stephens, Nikki Schlieker and Lori Harbaugh.

•June 15, 2016•

Downtown Plaza Offers Washington Square Plaza in Sullivan is giving visitors a place to enjoy the outdoors only a few steps away from downtown shops and activities.

Located at the northeast corner of the square adjacent to The Little Theatre, Sullivan Chamber and Economic Development has been working the past several months on ideas to create a patio area downtown.

“When we began looking into ways to attract traffic downtown 10 years ago, our consultant recommended closing the block to create a walkway and patio for visitors,” SCED Director Stepheny McMahon said, noting the city wasn’t interested in closing the street then.

Washington Square Plaza is an experiment that has utilized already.

John Stephens, Executive Director of The Little Theatre, noted that some 350 kids gathered in the patio area for autograph sessions following the Shrek and Robin Hood shows.

“It is great to have the patio for the autographs,” Stephens said, noting in the past children were overflowing into street traffic in front of the theatre. Read More

Lions Donate Discovery Cave

Photo furnished Lions Donate Discovery Cave Sullivan Lions Club recently donated the Discovery Cave in the preschool area in Wyman Park. Members pictured are John Ruscin, Dave Walker, Dick Martin, Bob White, Dave Reed, Jess Barker, Ed Taylor, Roger Tice, Bob Elder, and Verna Tice.

Photo furnished
Lions Donate Discovery Cave
Sullivan Lions Club recently donated the Discovery Cave in the preschool area in Wyman Park. Members pictured are John Ruscin, Dave Walker, Dick Martin, Bob White, Dave Reed, Jess Barker, Ed Taylor, Roger Tice, Bob Elder, and Verna Tice.

Hope Holds for City Wide Clean up, Outside Collector is Sought

•June 15, 2016•

By Ariana Cherry
For the News Progress

Sullivan City Council took action toward scheduling a citywide clean up day at the June 13 meeting.

Mayor Ann Short explained that it wasn’t because of the cost that the city couldn’t have citywide clean up day after the townwide rummage, it was because both Doty and Advanced Disposal had refused to do the services.

Without the existing collectors on which to rely, the city is seeking outside services and decided to contact PDC/Area Disposal for quotes.

PDC/Area Disposal of Peoria has serviced Arthur’s townwide clean up in the past. After doing some research, it was found that they had charged $1,950 per truckload in Arthur. Read More

New Principal for A-H Grade School

Photo furnished Arthur kindergarten teacher Kristin Nall says goodbye to her class as she moves into the principal’s office at Atwood-Hammond Grade School next year.

Photo furnished
Arthur kindergarten teacher Kristin Nall says goodbye to her class as she moves into the principal’s office at Atwood-Hammond Grade School next year.

•June 8, 2016•

By Ariana Cherry
For the News Progress

The principal of Atwood-Hammond Grade School Lindsay Blickenstaff resigned in April.

This left an open position within the Arthur-Lovington/Atwood-Hammond school district finding a replacement who wouldn’t be too far away. Arthur Grade School kindergarten teacher Kristin Nall was interested in the vacancy.

“I have had my administration degree since 2007. I have been looking to move forward in administration the last couple of years. My heart is and always will be in this school district. When the opportunity came up for me to stay in the district that I am raising my family in, I knew I wanted to move forward,” Nall commented.

Nall had been teaching kindergarten in Arthur for the past four years. Before that, she taught early childhood special education for six years in Sandoval, Illinois as well as preschool in Arthur for six years. She is a graduate of Eastern Illinois University and the Arthur High School class of 1995.

Transitioning from kindergarten teacher to principal is quite a change, but Nall is up for the challenge and has become established with communication and building relationships within the school system. Read More

How to Succeed Opens at Theatre

•June 9, 2016•

The Little Theatre production of How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying starts Wednesday, June 15 and runs through June 26.
Shows at the Sullivan theatre are 2 p.m. and 8 p.m. Wednesdays; 8 p.m. Thursdays and Fridays; 4 p.m. and 8 p.m. Saturdays; 2 p.m. Sundays.
The production is based on the award winning 1960s Broadway musical hit about a man who climbs the corporate ladder to success with little skill and a lot of smooze.

Boy Scout Troop 39 Cook Out

Photo by Mike Brothers Boy Scout Troop 39 Cook Out Sullivan townwide rummage sale shoppers had a chance to stop by the Sullivan IGA parking lot on June 3 and 4. Boy Scout troop 39 was offering delicious steak, pork chop and brat sandwiches giving busy shoppers a convenient lunch break. Troop 39 pictured preparing for lunch are back from left-Lake Atchison, Matthew Ellinger, Alex Menke, Khayman Van Loon, Seth Rice; front Beau Fleming, Seth Weaver and Laytin Pratt with Scoutmaster Jeff White manning the grille.

Photo by Mike Brothers
Boy Scout Troop 39 Cook Out
Sullivan townwide rummage sale shoppers had a chance to stop by the Sullivan IGA parking lot on June 3 and 4. Boy Scout troop 39 was offering delicious steak, pork chop and brat sandwiches giving busy shoppers a convenient lunch break. Troop 39 pictured preparing for lunch are back from left-Lake Atchison, Matthew Ellinger, Alex Menke, Khayman Van Loon, Seth Rice; front Beau Fleming, Seth Weaver and Laytin Pratt with Scoutmaster Jeff White manning the grille.

County Looks into Health Coverage Changes

Office Input Encouraged

•June 8, 2016•

By Stu D. Baker
for the News Progress

Moultrie County employees could be facing increased health coverage costs if a plan presented by the county board insurance committee is approved.

Dave McCabe, committee chair, pointed out a spike in 2015 claims that reached $900,000, teamed with the changing health care industry, prompted the committee to look into ways to save on health coverage for the 55-60 county employees.

“The county can not sustain spending 25 percent  of the total general fund budget for coverage, and we are concerned about keeping employee premiums unchanged,” McCabe began.

“As a general rule five percent of the employees account for 50 percent of claims, and we are pretty close to that average,” he continued. Read More

Woods Lake Reopens

Photo by RR Best Woods Lake Reopens Saturday, June 4 marked the grand reopening of Woods Lake south of Sullivan. Above the Burgess family from Sullivan enjoys the new fishing pier and handicap accessible boat dock which completed the U.S.Corp of Engineers project with help from volunteers of Sullivan AmBucs and Lincoln Trail Council Boy Scouts and others. The 30 acre lake was drained and cleaned and restocked with select fish. Part of the ceremony Saturday included a kid’s fishing tournament, hot dog roast, boat rides, archery and BB gun shoots. A plaque listing partners in the project was put on display as part of the 2 p.m. ribbon cutting ceremony.

Photo by RR Best
Woods Lake Reopens
Saturday, June 4 marked the grand reopening of Woods Lake south of Sullivan. Above the Burgess family from Sullivan enjoys the new fishing pier and handicap accessible boat dock which completed the U.S.Corp of Engineers project with help from volunteers of Sullivan AmBucs and Lincoln Trail Council Boy Scouts and others. The 30 acre lake was drained and cleaned and restocked with select fish. Part of the ceremony Saturday included a kid’s fishing tournament, hot dog roast, boat rides, archery and BB gun shoots. A plaque listing partners in the project was put on display as part of the 2 p.m. ribbon cutting ceremony.

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