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MONTICELLO – City officials hope to complete the restoration of a downtown Monticello minipark by spring.
This fall, city work crews are converting a vacant lot at the southeast corner of State Street and Main Street into a modern handicapped-accessible minipark.
URBANA – A committee appointed to evaluate the University of Illinois' College of Communications has identified a number of academic and administrative concerns, including little interaction among units and a chaotic advertising department, and it has recommended some drastic changes.
But a task force within the college will spend the semester putting together a plan for improving the college and its departments.
CHAMPAIGN – The munchies are nothing to giggle about when you're ill and lack any appetite whatsoever.
Then, says local Rastafarian Chef Ra, marijuana-induced food consumption might be a life-saver for people undergoing chemotherapy or enduring infection by HIV.
CHAMPAIGN – Supporters of the USA Patriot Act say it's an important tool for investigating terrorists who are targeting this country. Critics call it a vague, overbroad law that tramples our civil rights in the name of security.
A prosecutor, a civil rights lawyer and law students debated the act at the University of Illinois College of Law Monday.
URBANA – A bar owner in unincorporated Urbana is proposing that Champaign County extend alcohol sales in unincorporated areas of the county until 3 a.m. and extend bar closing hours to 4 a.m.
Ike Mapson, owner of the Malibu Bay Lounge, 3106 N. Cunningham Ave., U, made the proposal recently to the Champaign County Liquor Advisory Commission. Mapson serves on the seven-member commission that advises the county board.
URBANA – Lindsey Johnson and Shanelle Kimbrough carefully dipped a litmus paper strip into an unknown fluid, watched it turn bright orange, then matched the color to a printed acid/base scale.
"I can't wait to see the which liquid is which," said 12-year-old Lindsey, an Urbana Middle School student of her work with partner Shanelle at the Illinois State Water Survey on Monday. The girls and seven other "citizen scientists" from the school tested soft drinks, cleaning fluids, water and other liquids for acidity, charted the results and tried to match their numbers with numbers on an "unknown substances" chart.
Miss America, Erika Harold, often is asked if she plans to become an entertainer. She doesn't see that happening unless she is asked to become a legal commentator after she graduates from Harvard Law School.
The 23-year-old Urbana native and University of Illinois graduate already has done commentary three times on the "Saturday Final with Lawrence O'Donnell" program on MSNBC Television, which airs over Channel 47 in Champaign-Urbana.
URBANA – The University of Illinois aims to become a leader in bioengineering research and prepare students for jobs in the biotechnology industry by creating its first new department in years.
The Department of Bioengineering has been approved by the UI Board of Trustees and is awaiting approval from the Illinois Board of Higher Education. UI officials plan to admit the first class of freshmen to the department in fall 2004.
TOLONO – A group of Tolono area residents has formed an organization to preserve the community's history.
Former Tolono Mayor Bill Kirby used to get together with seven friends at his insurance office in downtown Tolono to share stories about Tolono's early days.
Jeff Kustusch did everything right. He bought a cheap bicycle at the annual University of Illinois police auction, locked it up everywhere he went and it still got stolen.
It happened in September 2002. Kustusch finished an afternoon chemistry class at Noyes Lab and rode back home, placed a metal chain and combination lock on the bike and wrapped it around a rack on the first floor of his apartment. When he woke up the next morning, the red and black Huffy was missing.