St. Elmo Area News

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By The Staff

By Anna Jean Rhodes

Wednesday, Dec. 29
• Display cases at the Fayette County Museum, Vandalia, will feature a holiday display of 24 “Christmas with the Lincolns” prints by Lloyd Ostendorf. Also on display are some century old Christmas postcards and some vintage Christmas toys. They will be on display through Dec. 31. The museum hours are 9:30 a.m.-4 p.m., Monday through Saturday. Starting in January, the museum will not be open on Sunday afternoons until the time change in the spring.

Friday, Dec. 31
• New Year’s Eve
Saturday, Jan. 1, 2011
• Have a Happy New Year!
Monday, Jan. 3
• The St. Elmo City Council, 7 p.m., Phillips Building.
Tuesday, Jan. 4
• The first day for school student attendance since Dec. 22.
• Friendly Neighbors, noon potluck, Phillips Building.
• Council of Catholic Women, 7 p.m., St. Mary’s Catholic Church parish hall.
Wednesday, Jan. 5
• Wright’s Corner Unit of Home and Community Education, 1 p.m., Loudon Town House.
Thursday, Jan. 6
• Epiphany day.
• St. Elmo Business Association, noon, Mary Ann’s Restaurant.
• The Wheatland Unit of Home and Community Education, 1:30 p.m. Erna Koontz is hostess.
• The Fayette County Extension Foundation, 6 p.m., Vandalia Extension Office.
• St. Elmo Women’s Civic Club, 7 p.m., St. Elmo Public Library. The program is to be a magic show by James Schaible.
Fayette County HCE Christmas
The Fayette County Board of Home and Community Education has a Christmas get-together each December. This year they met on Monday, Dec. 20, at 11 a.m. at the Vandalia Ponderosa.
The 14 present included guests Rachel Hollinshead, the county Extension director; Debbie Boley, the Extension office secretary; Jo Stine, the community worker/FNP; and Pat Harris of the Vandalia Lighthouse Pregnancy Center.
Instead of a gift exchange, the board members contributed $50 to the Pregnancy Center.
Mary Smith of the Wright’s Corner Unit gave the meal blessing. After lunch, President Flo Allen, of the Sefton Unit, had names drawn for two door prizes. One was a gold and one was a red NOEL centerpiece, and they were won by Dorothy Harpster of the St. Peter Unit and Debbie Boley.
A drawing was held for the $100 Wal-Mart gift certificate, and the winner was Carol Oldham of Brownstown. This was a county fundraiser for the HCE Board, and the tickets sold made $394 for the HCE treasury.
Karen Denning of the St. Elmo Unit had games. The first one was a Christmas song quiz of 20 questions, and Phyllis Pryor of the Sefton Unit received a prize for getting the most answered correctly. Anna Jean Rhodes of the St. Elmo Unit received a prize for getting the least right.
For the next game, Denning passed around a jar of wrapped candies. Joyce Moore of the Wheatland Unit was the closest guesser of the 69 pieces in the jar, and she received the jar of candy.
Christmas bingo was played, and the winners, who received small prizes, were Smith, Hollinshead, Pryor, Moore and Shirley Klitzing of the Sefton Unit.
For those who didn’t bingo or receive a door prize or from games, Allen had them draw from a bag of prizes, so everyone received something.
Also, Denning gave each one a snowman ornament that had on the card the meaning of the snowman; Anita Smith of the Vandalia Day Unit gave each one a Christmas card; Smith gave each one a Christmas card and a pen; Evelyn Probst of the Bingham/Ramsey Unit gave each one a small handmade Christmas tree to use as an ornament or put a magnet on it to use on the refrigerator; and Allen gave each one an Avon lip balm stick and an ornament.
Panzi Blackwell of the Sefton Unit ended the activities by reading two poems she had written – one on her fall that broke her ankle and one on Christmas. Her husband came to get her, and she had him take a picture of the group.
Home Burned on Christmas
When heading for Chicago for Christmas, the Frank Viramontes family had to come back to St. Elmo – their home burned Christmas Day. Their home was a few miles south of St. Elmo, where they have the apple orchard and raise many vegetables they sell. There are five children in the family.
United Methodist News
The worship service for Dec. 26 at the St. Elmo First United Methodist Church was given by several members of the congregation in the absence of the minister, Rev. John Eisfelder.
Lloyd Stanley was in charge and gave prayers, Kathy Spitler was organist, Joann Maxey was pianist, Dave Maxey gave the reading on the candles – Hope, Joy, Peace, Faith and the large white center candle to represent the birth of Christ – and they were lit by Stanley.
Six Christmas hymns were sung throughout the service, and scripture readers were Dave Maxey, Mona Stanley and Cathy Flowers.
Specials, piano solos, were given by two young girls, daughters of Michael and Brandi Maxey. Sarah played “Did You Hear the Mountains Tremble?,” and Megan played “Lamb of God.”
Richard Lowe gave a talk to the children and they received candy that had been left for them by Barbara Eisfelder.
• The former St. Elmo minister was the Rev. Alice True ,and her husband, Rick, lost his 90-year-old mother, Pat. The graveside services were held the morning of Dec. 27 at Richview Cemetery. Memorials are suggested for the Richview Cemetery Fund.
• The Brownstown First United Methodist and Emmanuel churches’ pastor, the Rev. David Bigley who lives at Hillsboro, lost his wife Dec. 8. She was the Rev. Diane Bigley who was pastor of the Montgomery County Good Shepherd’s Parish. Expressions of sympathy may be sent to the Rev. David Bigley, 8 Westwood Dr., Hillsboro, Ill. 62049-1057.
• Gloria Blacklock, a former Southern Illinois Conference United Methodist Women president, a former General Conference Delegate and a former president of the Women’s Division of the Board of Global Ministries, died on Nov. 20. Memorials may be made to the General Board of Global Ministries, The United Methodist Church at 475 Riverside Drive, New York, N.Y. 10015. Expressions of sympathy may be sent to her husband, Ray Blacklock, 40 Rodan Drive, Vergennes, Ill. 62294.
Friendship Manor
A Christmas party was held in the dining area at the Friendship Manor Nursing Home the afternoon of Dec. 16, and all residents who were able attended.
There were Christmas decorations, Santa Claus was present and passed out gifts to the residents, Chuck Hutson read “The Night Before Christmas,” and Jo Hutson was dressed as an elf. Christmas music was played.
Refreshments included salami, cheese, cheese balls, dips, crackers, chips, cookies, candies and punch.
The day before, a birthday party was held in the afternoon for Doris Dolly (12/2), Filbert Meseke (12/4) and Lucille Dycus (12/6). Employees who have December birthdays are Heather Elder, Maranda Hovic, Clarice Joles, Shirley Kline, Monica Long and Shannon Wright.
At various times, the nursing home has had groups of carolers visit.
The nursing home halls and doors were decorated in a Christmas theme. A Christmas dinner was served Christmas Day.
A November article was not written. Those who had November birthdays were Leroy Hartman (11/17), Betty Sprayberry (11/28), Irma Garrison (11/29) and Anna Hartman (11/29).
Anna Jean Rhodes, who had been a resident at the nursing home from the third Sunday in November 2009 thru May 29, 2010, visited residents at the home the afternoon of Dec.19, the first time she was able to visit since she left. She received her wheelchair and van on Dec. 6 and, weather permitting, has been able to attend church and some of the Christmas events.
Lions Club Christmas
Wives and guests, including scholarship winners and their families, are invited each year to the St. Elmo Lions Club Christmas dinner. This year, it was held at Mary Ann’s Restaurant the evening of Dec. 20, with 30 attending.
The tables had been decorated by Joann Maxey, Mona Stanley and Leatha Newberry. The centerpieces included greenery, pine cones, poinsettias and candles.
President Dave Maxey led in the pledge of allegiance, and Kent Denton gave the meal blessing.
After the meal, Maxey introduced the club’s two scholarship winners – Cassandra Brauer and Bridget Crockett – and presented each one with $500. Both are going to Lake Land College, and Crockett said she plans to go to ISU after Lake Land. With them were Brauer’s dad, Carl Brauer, and Crockett’s parents, Mike and Kathy Crockett.
The Lions Club started giving a scholarship in 2003 and gave one each year through 2007. The past three years, the club has given two a year, so this year, it is numbers 10 and 11. The scholarships are announced at the graduation ceremony, but the money isn’t received until one semester is completed.
Mary Ann and her employees were thanked for the buffet, which included ham, boneless pork chops, pecan pie, cheesecake and turtle pie.
The women each received a gift of a metal angel ornament and a kitchen towel.
Those present, in addition to the Crocketts and Brauers were:  Don Crawford, John and Barb Crawford, Lewis and Betty Crawford, Kent and Helen Denton, Roger Fulk, Bob Lowe, Richard Lowe, LeMar and Billye Jo Marchman, Dave and Joann Maxey, Charles Moore, Dee and Leatha Newberry, Lloyd and Mona Stanley, Bob and Ellie Wells, and Randy Wolf, and widows of club members, Helen Koonce, Rosemary Owen and Anna Jean Rhodes.