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Tom Kacich: N-G was launchpad for rising star named Ebert

Everybody's got to start somewhere, and the late multimedia prodigy Roger Ebert started at The News-Gazette, with a little help from his east Urbana neighbor, Harold Holmes.

The Eberts lived at 410 E. Washington St., and Holmes, who was city editor and later became The News-Gazette's executive editor, lived a block away at 503 E. Washington.


'Spring Awakening' opens Thursday

URBANA — Described as a high-energy rock musical exploring adolescents' struggles with sexuality, "Spring Awakening" will open Thursday evening at Krannert Center for the Performing Arts.

The University of Illinois Department of Theatre production is directed by New York-based Austin Regan, who worked closely with Michael Mayer, director of the original Broadway production.


Civility rules the day at workshop

CHAMPAIGN — No fights erupted. No booing broke out.

All in all, it was a successful civility workshop.

The makeup of the audience helped. The 50 or so attending "Civility in the Workplace" at the Champaign Public Library included civil servants so mannerly that the librarians never had to shush them.


Smith defeats Williams for Rantoul mayor

RANTOUL — The village of Rantoul will have a new mayor.

Voters on Tuesday tapped challenger Chuck Smith for the village's top post over incumbent Neal Williams, who was running for his fourth term. Smith pulled in 120 more votes than Williams, winning 881-761.

A jubilant Smith said he felt like he was "walking on a cloud" after final election figures were released.


Danville, 10 others approve electric aggregation

DANVILLE — For the second time in a year, Danville voters approved electric aggregation, giving the city the ability to start its own program separate from the one already made available to city residents through the county.


2 former district workers to join two incumbents on Danville school board

DANVILLE — The Danville school board will have two new but familiar faces in May.

Newcomers Darlene Halloran and Lon Henderson, both former district employees, won seats on the board in Tuesday's election, along with incumbents Randal Ashton and Frank Young.


Two newcomers, two incumbents win Danville council seats

DANVILLE — Two longtime incumbents, Steve Foster and Mike Puhr, will return to the Danville City Council for another four years, and they will be joined by two newcomers, R.J. Davis and Frank Hoskins.


Newcomer set to join incumbent

DANVILLE — Many of Greg Wolfe's family and friends knew he won a seat on the Danville Area Community College Board of Trustees in Tuesday's election long before he did.

That's because Wolfe, who's finishing his third term on the Oakwood school board, and his fellow board members were in a closed-session meeting until 10 p.m. Tuesday. His wife was waiting to give him the news.


Holt wins top spot in Tolono

TOLONO — A village board member won a four-person race to become village board president of Tolono.


Quarnstrom wins township post in Champaign

URBANA — Township government in both Champaign and Urbana will have new top officials after Tuesday night's election.