Today's Opinions

  • There's still a big festival

    We won't have the period crafts, food and music that we've grown to be accustomed to during our community's largest annual festival. But this weekend still offers a lot for both Vandalia residents and visitors.
    State cuts have resulted in the cancellation of this year's Grande Levée, but a festival that has been held in conjunction with the period celebration continues.

  • Obituaries valuable for research

    I recently completed a book project for the Fayette County Genealogical & Historical Society, compiling obituaries of county residents born before 1900. Prior to this year, Fayette County is short on newspapers that would have carried the news of the passing of an old-time resident.
    This new 100-page book, “Our Fayette County Ancestors,” is the seventh in the series and has an average of three obituaries, death notices or funeral cards per page, which will result in more than 300 notices of death and include, for the most part, good genealogy information.

  • Sheriff needs newer vehicles

    Many, many times, Steve Knebel told other members, and the public, that the county should be using the proceeds from the sale of the county's coal rights for capital improvements, not salaries. It appears that some of those funds should be used for county squad cars.
    The county sheriff, Chris Smith, is driving a pickup truck with more than 150,000 miles on the odometer, one of the vehicles that the department has seized in recent years. He's driving that truck because his regular vehicle, an SUV with more than 180,000 miles, is in the shop ... again.

  • Vandalia Memories
  • Donors, volunteers made summer lunch program a success

    Another successful year for Summer Lunches for Kids.
    Once again the citizens of Fayette County rallied to meet a need in their community. Thanks to the faithful volunteers and the generosity of so many, we were able to provide more than 5,100 lunches to children in Vandalia, Shobonier, Vera, Ramsey and Brownstown this summer.
    Back in March, we asked for donations to purchase food for the lunches and we were overwhelmed by your generosity. When we asked for jars of peanut butter and jelly, we received enough to make all the sandwiches we needed.

  • Friday is 9/11 – we cannot forget to honor those we lost

    9/11 – We Cannot Forget!
    This Friday, Sept. 11, will make 14 years since the sad and tragic day that our nation had to endure, as a country and as citizens!
    We cannot forget those lives that were taken from us on that day. We need to cherish their lives, as we live on with ours.
    Since that day, more then 6,000 young lives have been sacrificed in the call to duty to protect our nation, and to seek out and destroy those enemies who brought terror to our cities and our people.

  • Banks of the Okaw

    This week's photo: The young man in this photo, taken in 1943, lived here most of his life and raised five children. He was the Mr. Softee Man.

  • The Way We Were

    25 Years Ago

    1990 –  A Fayette County Child Sex Abuse Advocacy Board was formed. Doris Benefiel, chief managing officer of the Fayette County Probation Office, was chosen as chairman.
    Charles and Gladys Fisher of Brownstown celebrated their 60th wedding anniversary.
    Vandalia’s 61-room Days Inn motel was ready to open. Eddie Lowry was named manager: The motel was owned and operated by Old Capital Hospitality Inc., a group of local investors.