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Today's Opinions

  • It's all about appreciating what we have

    It's not uncommon for people to not fully appreciate their hometown ... and its people. Ed Taylor Jr. is not one of those people.

    Taylor was one of two people honored recently by the Vandalia Chamber of Commerce for community service. As he accepted the award, Taylor explained why he has given a lifetime of service to the Vandalia area and its people.

  • Lincoln Museum worth the wait

    “The luck of the third adventure is proverbial,” writes Elizabeth Barrett Browning. When translated, that means, "Third time’s a charm."

    Well, third time was a charm for me, recently, because along with my husband and son, I finally made it to the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library & Museum in Springfield.

    What an experience!

    The parking garage across the street makes access to the museum easy, and from the moment we entered the "gateway" or portal, we were greeted with smiles and knowledgeable volunteers and staff.

  • Should VCHS be closed campus?

    If you drive in the area of Vandalia Community High School around noon, its clear that the school has an open-campus lunch hour. In all kinds of weather, dozens of students can be seen walking to nearby fast-food restaurants and convenience stores.

    Should we care if high school students eat their lunch at school or go to one of the fast-food restaurants within walking distance? What are the concerns, the potential liabilities, the disruptions to the educational process that would prompt school officials to consider closing the campus?

  • Stapp served state for most of his life

    James T. B. Stapp was born in Fayette County, Ky., (now Woodford County), on April 13, 1804, the youngest child of James and Sarah "Sally" Burbridge Stapp. His father, from Virginia, was a soldier of the Revolution, and at its end, moved the family to Kentucky.

    When James was 12 years old, his parents moved again, this time to Kaskaskia, Ill., and this is where we pick up their story.

  • Get out and vote!

    Next Tuesdays primary election will feature only three contested races, and only residents in three county board districts will be voting on those contests. But that doesnt mean that everyone else in the county should not bother going to the polls on Tuesday.

    Fayette County residents should take advantage of the rescheduling of Illinois primary, to allow it to be included in Super Tuesday. On that day, voters in 20 states will be selecting their presidential candidates.

  • Helm, Taylor worthy of Abes

    The two individuals who last Thursday received an Abe Award from the Vandalia Chamber of Commerce have a lot in common. Its just that they have taken different paths in reaching a similar goal serving the community and its people.

    Saundra Helm and Ed Taylor Jr. are also similar in that they have quietly and modestly done numerous things to benefit other residents of the area.

  • L-U clipping identifies musicians on postcard

    It had been quite a while since I had logged onto eBay, the Web site where you can buy or sell just about anything.

    I collect Vandalia postcards, and one evening as I went on line, I decided to see what Vandalia items eBay had to offer.

    About half way down the list was a postcard of the "Vandalia Band." Knowing this could be Vandalia, Ohio, or Indiana, I was pleasantly surprised to see it for Vandalia, Ill., and the seller had dated it at 1905.

    The leader of the band, who was seated and holding a baton, looked familiar, although I couldnt put a name to his face.

  • Route 51 hearings need public input

    Though we said it last week, it bears repeating once again that two important hearings regarding the future of U.S. Route 51 will be held this Thursday.

    These hearings will allow area residents to hear information from Illinois Department of Transportation officials and then to share their opinions about the options available for the four-lane expansion of U.S. Route 51 in Fayette County.

    The first will be from 1-4 p.m. in the multi-purpose room at the Kaskaskia College Vandalia Campus. The second will follow from 5:30-8 p.m. at Ramsey High School.