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Radio station changes call letters to WKIO, format to classic hits

CHAMPAIGN — WKIO-FM is once again on the air.

The station, which was a mainstay of the Champaign-Urbana air waves from 1978 to 2005, returned to life Tuesday afternoon, occupying the 107.9 FM frequency that was formerly home to WUIL-FM.

The new WKIO plays classic hits from the 1960s, 1970s and 1980s, said Mike Haile, general manager of WDWS-AM, WHMS-FM and now WKIO.


Two quiet stories that pack a punch

Sometimes plans just don't work out the way we had planned. Even in making our reading selections, we can be surprised in a story's layout, characters or conclusion. A couple of weeks ago, I brought home a stack of books that I thought had an exciting thriller component to the story line. The first book I picked up to read was "Bent Road" by Lori Roy.


Boys find the right formula for adventure

In Kansas, near the end of World War II, Jack's mother dies. His father, off at war, has Jack sent to a military school for boys in Maine. There, Jack meets "the strangest of boys" whose name is Early Auden. So begins "Navigating Early" (Delacorte 2013) by Clare Vanderpool (Newbery Winner 2011 — "Moon Over Manifest").


C-U Haiku March 24, 2013

Holy men gather

White smoke billowing in Rome

Il Papa is new

— Mike Knoke, Champaign


Ted Kooser: American life in poetry March 24, 2013

There's an old country-western song with the refrain, "That's what happens when two worlds collide," and in this poem by Bruce Guernsey, who divides his year between Illinois and Maine, we see a near collision between two worlds.

Back Road

Winter mornings

driving past

I'd see these kids

huddled like grouse

in the plowed ruts

in front of their shack


Richard J. Leskosky: Zombie comedies are alive and well

Zombies seem to have shambled into success almost everywhere these days: Big-budget films with big-name stars (Brad Pitt's "World War Z" comes out in June), groundbreaking TV series ("The Walking Dead"), best-selling novels ("Pride and Prejudice and Zombies") and even the auto industry (Subaru just recalled 5,000 "zombie cars" that start themselves).


Team putting movements under the microscope

URBANA — Art and science will interact this week in the Consilience Project, which will feature several events including a performance, open jams and open studio sessions.

Using motion-capture and other technology, the Consilience Project team will collect information about structures in the body as the dancers — all professionals — move in improvisational dance.


The west side of the state - all to ourselves

By STEVE HALL

Mid-October might not be everyone's choice for a trip to the lakeshore, but for us, it was ideal. Montague, Mich., is only five hours north of Champaign in an area known as West Michigan, not Western Michigan. The timing was slightly past fall peak, but colors were still abundant. The crowds were not. For three midweek days, we had the area largely to ourselves.


Dance company ready for first performances

URBANA — Armed with a master's of fine arts degree in dance, Kate Insolia last summer founded a dance company of a different kind.

Her auditions were open to people of all ages and ability — or lack of dance skills. And she aimed to explore not just physical movement but a variety of emotions as well.


Studio Visit: Dan Gratz

Studio Visit appears in Sunday editions of The News-Gazette. Here, a visit with painter Dan Gratz.

Q: I loved your paintings that were on display at Figure One. How much do you charge for them, because I really want one?

A: I can give you a price list. There's a range. It depends on the size.