March 2012

More Summer-like warm for the far eastern Corn Belt

Across the Corn Belt, record-shattering warmth persists across the eastern half of the region, pushing winter grains far ahead of their normal pace of spring development. Thursday’s high temperatures could exceed 85° in parts of the Ohio Valley.

Rantoul site to help in training area firefighters

RANTOUL — Firefighters from Rantoul and area departments will begin training this weekend at a former apartment complex that is earmarked for demolition.

Rantoul Fire Chief Ken Waters said the firefighters will do "room and content burns" beginning Saturday at Autumn Glen apartments on North Hobson Drive, next to North Maplewood Drive.

Illini after another Ohioan in Meadows

Follow IlliniHQ recruiting blogger Cody Westerlund on Twitter here.

Deadline nearing for registration of kindergartners

CHAMPAIGN — Parents with kids who will be 5 on or before Sept. 1 need to register for kindergarten in Champaign schools soon.

The registration deadline is March 30.

To register, parents need to stop by the Family Information Center at 1103 N. Neil St., C, at the corner of Neil Street and Bradley Avenue in the Columbia School building.

First Mid board member up for approval

MATTOON — First Mid-Illinois Bancshares shareholders will be asked to approve a new director at their annual meeting April 25.

Holly A. Bailey, daughter of current board member Charles A. Adams, has been nominated to succeed Sara Jane Preston on the eight-member board.

Dart Container to acquire Solo Cup

URBANA — Solo Cup Co. announced Wednesday it has agreed to be acquired by Dart Container Corp. in a transaction valued at $1 billion.

According to The Wall Street Journal, Dart is paying $315 million for Solo and assuming about $700 million of Solo's debt. The Journal said Dart is expected to retain the Solo name for its party cups.

Holderfield may fight to be clerk candidate

Stephanie Holderfield, who lost Tuesday to a candidate who had withdrawn from the race for Champaign County circuit court clerk, said Wednesday that she believes she still should be the Republican candidate for the office.

And Rick Winkel, a former state legislator who beat Holderfield by 245 votes on Tuesday, repeated Wednesday that he would not accept his party's nomination.

Public forums planned for UI provost finalists

URBANA — The three finalists for provost, including two from Urbana, have been announced, and all three will participate in public forums on the University of Illinois campus beginning next week.

Rantoul Chamber's Kaler leaves for new job

RANTOUL — Chris Kaler is leaving the Rantoul Area Chamber of Commerce to re-enter a field he worked in for 14 years.

Kaler will succeed Mike Boebinger as regional general manager for Frontier Communications, which provides telephone and high-speed Internet service to rural communities.

Farm Bureau, Chamber urge members to look into vote on Champaign schools bond issue

CHAMPAIGN — As Champaign resident Don Kermath works to put the school district's intent to raise property taxes by issuing working-cash bonds on a ballot, two community groups are also getting involved in the effort.