• Take in the Grande Levée

    This is the weekend where we celebrate our town's rich history with a two-day celebration at the Vandalia Statehouse.
    Whether you've been to a Grande Levée in the past or have never experienced one, we know that the Friday night and Saturday event is one that you will enjoy.
    Check out the schedule on Page 10A of this issue and plan out your weekend at the Statehouse.

  • Another loss could be worse

    Sadly, downtown Vandalia lost another business and building to fire late Monday night and early morning. While we mourn yet another such loss to a business district that has taken big hits due to catastrophy.
    And while we lament over the fire that destroyed Capitol View Restaurant at Fourth and Gallatin streets, we have to at the same time remain thankful that the loss could have been much, much bigger.
    The credit for that goes to Vandalia's volunteer firefighters, with assistance from Brownstown firemen.

  • Cancer fund keeps money local to give aid

    It has been about 2 1/2 years since a group of local residents made the decision to pull away from the American Cancer Society and form their own group to assist people battling cancer. And it appears that their decision was a wise one.
    The Fayette County Cancer Fund was formed in October 2015, with the move made to ensure that donations made by individuals, businesses and organizations were used only to help local cancer patients.

  • Cleanup Week is next week

    How long have you been saying to yourself, "I have got to go through all of this stuff and get rid of some of it?" Well, next week is the time to do that.
    The city of Vandalia's annual Cleanup Week is next Monday through Friday.
    On the day of their regular trash pickup, Vandalia residents who are customers of Doty Sanitation can set out with their regular trash those unwanted items in their basement, attic or garage.
    It's the perfect opportunity to get rid of that junk that has been piling up around the house.

  • Good to see Farm Bureau, KC continue pact

    Last summer, the Fayette County Farm Bureau Board of Directors signed an agreement through which Kaskaskia College agriculture students could use the former home of the University of Illinois Agronomy Research Center. The two parties have agreed to continue that relationship, which bodes well for many people.
    The agrement provides the college's ag students with  120 acres on which they can perform research while getting hands-on farming experience.

  • Volunteers, support needed

    It was just last week in this space that we noted the number of volunteers that made for a successful homecoming week in Vandalia. Now, we note the need for volunteers and support for upcoming projects and events in the community.
    For example, we have learned that volunteers are badly needed for Second Chance Animal Rescue. That program has been successfully adopting dogs with families and individuals for more than a decade.

  • TAILS helps both parties

    The program that sends rescue dogs to Vandalia Correctional Center and then sends trained dogs back to the rescue is, as Assistant Warden of Programs John Fatheree says, "a win-win for everyone."
    Through TAILS (Teaching Animals & Inmate Life Skills), dogs from Second Chance Animal Rescue are taken to VCC, where they are hooked up with pairs of offenders.
    The offenders are totally responsible for the dogs as they live with them, and that responsibility includes training the animals.

  • Be safe during eclipse

    We will experience a rare natural eclipse next Monday, when the moon gets between the earth and sun, and casts a shadow over the earth.
    In this part of the country, the eclipse will begin shortly before noon and end at roughly 2:44 p.m., with the maximum eclipse being about 1:20 p.m.
    It will, indeed, be quite a sight to see ... but one that can only be viewed by taking precautions.
    The National Aeronautics and Space Agency provides the following safety guidelines:

  • 50 years later, story is the same

    When the Okaw Area Vocational Center was established half a century ago, The Vandalia Leader ran an editorial in which we touted the value of the center. Their words on the value of vocational education still ring true today; therefore, we are reprinting that July 27, 1967 editorial.
    The Okaw Area Vocational Center will provide the filler for an educational gap in this community, which has long been in need of attention.

  • School days coming up

    In case you haven't noticed, parking lots in area schools are full of vehicles this week. That can only mean one thing – the startup of a new school year.
    Despite what is going on in our state capitol, or not going on, local schools will be in session in just a couple of weeks.
    With the start of a new school year, we will again need to adjust our driving habits.