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Today's News

  • Cemetery statues were sculpted in Italy

    A couple of weeks back, my friend, Joyce McClary, was showing me photographs taken on one of her walks.

    Joyce was scrolling through the images, telling me where she had taken the shots when all at once I stopped her. The next photo was of the statue in South Hill Cemetery of a seated woman.

    The previous week, I had searched newspaper microfilm at Evans Public Library, looking for a story about four statues, sculpted in Italy, unveiled during a Memorial Day ceremony in 1952. The seated woman was one of the four.

  • Local DHS office will remain open

    If Illinoisans want an example of what government reform truly is, according to state Sen. Kyle McCarter (R-Lebanon), they need to look to the employees of the Illinois Department of Human Services in Vandalia and other local residents.

    It was those people, McCarter said, who held him and state Rep. Ron Stephens (R-Greenville) accountable at a time when DHS officials announced their plan to close agency offices in Vandalia and 16 other communities.

  • Statehouse now open seven days a week

    The state delivered the good news two weeks ago that the Vandalia Statehouse would remain open past the middle of this year. Then, late last week it announced the Statehouse and other state historic sites would be open seven days a week.

    Prior to being impeached at the end of 2008, Gov. Rod Blagojevich closed all state historic sites as part of his budget cuts.

    The Vandalia Statehouse was reopened in March, after a local resident stepped forward with an anonymous donation that would fund the operations of the old state capitol for six months.

  • Council delays action on Gallatin Street parking

    The Vandalia City Council heard on Monday night a recommendation to lighten parking restrictions on Gallatin Street. But it will be some time before it acts on such a recommendation.

    The council’s streets and sewers committee, at a meeting last Monday night, agreed to recommend that the city no long enforce two-hour parking around the clock on Gallatin Street.

    The committee endorsed a two-hour restriction between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m., seven days a week, to accommodate residents of apartments in downtown buildings.

  • Health department gives recommendations on swine flu

    The Fayette County Health Department has three simple words of advice for protecting yourself from swine flu – clean (your hands), cover (your mouth) and contain (germs).

    The FCHD is working with the Illinois Department of Public Health is investigating the spread of the H1N1 virus, also known as swine flu.

    By late morning on Wednesday, the IDPH reported that there were 225 confirmed cases of swine flu in Illinois, as well as 20 more probable cases. All but a few of those cases are in the Chicago area.

  • Ferguson going strong in aerboics after 20 years

    Lynn Sefton Ferguson became interested in aerobics in 1979. Soon convinced that aerobics were very beneficial to a person’s health, both physically and mentally, she became an aerobics instructor.

    That was 20 years ago, and she is still going strong. Her energy, vitality and youthful appearance speak well for her chosen profession.

    She was introduced to aerobics through a friend whose sister was into aerobics in Oklahoma, where it was comparatively new. Her friend wanted her sister to come here for a clinic, but at least 20 people had to sign up to do this.

  • Vandalia's Cleanup Week is this week

    Vandalia residents who have been waiting for the opportunity to get rid of old appliances and other types of junk need wait no longer.

    The city-wide Cleanup Week is this Monday through Friday.

    Residents of the city who are customers of Doty Sanitation can place the unwanted items out with their regular trash on their regular trash pickup days.

    There are, however, some things that will not be picked up. They include:

    • Paint in a wet stage.

    • Vehicle batteries.

    • Tires.

    • Brush and landscape waste.

  • Gottman will speak at Chamber meeting

    Vandalia Mayor Rick Gottman will be the guest speaker at the Vandalia Chamber of Commerce's monthly meeting this Wednesday.

    The chamber meets at noon in the Lincoln Room at Ponderosa Steakhouse, with a luncheon followed by a business meeting and the program.

  • 11:20 a.m. on Monday Local DHS office WILL stay open

    The Illinois Department of Human Services office in Vandalia will stay open.

    State Rep. Ron Stephens (R-Greenville) told The Leader-Union late Monday morning that he held in his hand a letter from the state's Central Management Services to the lease holder for the building that houses the local DHS office that states that the decision to close the local office had been rescinded.

  • Friend turns out to be journalism prof

    Recently, I contacted my friend, Roger Boye, of Evanston, to tell him my exciting news! My name appeared among the acknowledgments in Edward Callary’s new book, “Place Names Of Illinois.” This was a first for me, and I knew Roger would appreciate what it meant.

    I met Roger early in 1995 through a genealogical query. He was interested in family information on the Rheiner and Boye families of St. Paul. I copied what I had and sent it to him.