Today's News

  • Renaissance Man

    Vandalia Community High School senior Will Cowger is a big guy. At 6 feet 3 inches and 230 pounds, he stands out from the crowd. His size isn’t the only thing that separates him from the rest, though. Cowger is a three-sport star at VCHS. In the fall he’s under the lights on the football field, in the winter he’s on the hardwood of the basketball court and in the spring he’s under the sun, in the shot put ring.

    Even with the demands of his athletic schedule, Cowger maintains a 4.0 in the classroom and is currently at the top of his class.

  • Field of Dreams gets logo, begins fundraising campaign

    Tuesday night the Field of Dreams committee held a brief meeting to discuss which area businesses it would approach for donations and sponsorships.

    VCHS softball coach Brian Buscher handed out forms to give to businesses, detailing outfield wall signs that businesses can purchase at the cost of $300 a year and $200 for each additional year.

    The signs will measure 4 feet by 4 feet and sponsors have the option of where they would like their sign to be placed at.

  • St. Elmo council uphold mayor's decision

    A 3-3 vote by the St. Elmo City Council at a special meeting on Thursday night means that Mayor Larry Tish’s dismissal of Ken Thomason from the chief of police position stands.

    About 240 city residents were on hand for the meeting, which was moved from the Phillips Building to the St. Elmo Elementary School because of the size of the crowd. About a dozen area police officers checked everyone with handheld metal detectors as they entered the building.

  • State late on school payments

    After receiving the first installment of local tax monies, the Vandalia Community School District’s financial picture is considerably brighter. However, uncertainty about state funding continues to cloud the district’s financial outlook — its payments to the district are about four months late.

  • City will pay for damages to downtown florist

    The Vandalia City Council was asked on Monday night to take care of what city officials expect to be the last of unwelcome surprises related to the downtown streetscape project.

    While tearing out the sidewalk on the south side of the 400 block of Gallatin Street, workers learned that part of the foundation of Something Special Florist was setting on that sidewalk.

    “They tore out part of the foundation when tearing out the sidewalk,” Something Special owner Donelle Conaway told the city council.

  • Firing of chief may cost city

    A dismissal that had its beginnings in a case involving tall grass may eventually land the city of St. Elmo in deep weeds.

    For 16 years – under five mayors – Ken Thomason has served as St. Elmo’s chief of police. From what is known, his personnel file contains no reprimands, no indications of performance problems.

    Then, two weeks ago – after a flap over the enforcement of the city’s weed ordinance – Mayor Larry Tish presented Thomason with a letter saying that he was being terminated.

  • Old threshing pictures tell tale of harvest

    Driving in the Ramsey Creek bottoms the other day, I slowed down to watch the graceful ballet of three Case-IH combines as they performed the dance of "gathering the harvest" in the field below me.

    Chaff and dust rose up behind the combines, fully engulfing them as they made a sweeping turn at the end of the row. The men and women in the cab know exactly how far to go before executing their turn so that the beans are fully harvested.

  • Senior digs more than volleyball

    Vandalia Community High School senior, Katie Vieregge looks like any other high school student walking the halls at VCHS. Waving to teachers, stopping and talking to friends, she moves through the halls just like everybody else. You wouldn’t know to look at her that she’s probably one of the most involved students at VCHS. She is a two-sport athlete who participates in numerous other school groups, such as student council, and who is also involved in her church and the community.

  • Field of Dreams committee ready to start fundraising

    The Vandalia Field of Dreams committee is less than a week from finally getting out into the community to seek donations and sponsorships to help pay back the more than $30,000 it  has spent over the last three months.


    On Tuesday, the committee will briefly meet to pick up brochures and informational sheets to take with them when they go to perspective donors and sponsors.


  • Wyatt Earp named for a Vandalia man

    Most of us have heard of Wyatt Earp and the shootout at the O.K. Corral, but did you know that Marshal Wyatt Earp was named for a Vandalia man?

    Yes, Wyatt Berry Stapp Earp was named for his father’s commander during the Mexican War, Capt. Wyatt Berry Stapp, whose family came from Kaskaskia to Vandalia with the capital.

    One of eight children of Nicholas Porter Earp and Virginia Ann Cooksey, Wyatt Earp was born on March 19, 1848, in Monmouth, in Warren County, at the home of his aunt, Elizabeth Earp.