All Parks and Recreation Content

'Wednesday night is soccer night'

These women give new definition to the term "soccer moms."

Oh, they've done their share of carpooling and cheering for kids from the sidelines at soccer matches, hockey games and baseball tournaments.

But this is their turf. Er, pitch.


Scaffolding removed at Virginia; work on schedule

The Champaign Park District says its $7.5 million renovation of the Virginia Theatre is on schedule.

The scaffolding that was used to restore the auditorium's ceiling — including Spanish design canvases — was taken down earlier this month. Painters and plasterers are now restoring the side walls and the decorative plaster underneath the balcony.


Forest preserve acquires untouched area near Homer Lake

HOMER — Champaign County residents are free to roam a small property near Homer Lake that apparently has never been touched by development.

The Champaign County Forest Preserve District recently acquired a wooded, 6.67-acre site along the Salt Fork of the Vermilion River that forest preserve Executive Director Daniel Olson called "as untouched as central Illinois comes."


Grant will help redevelop Museum of the Grand Prairie exhibit

A $57,571 grant from the state's museum capital grants program will help the Champaign County Forest Preserve District redevelop the main gallery exhibit at the Museum of the Grand Prairie in Mahomet, formerly known as the Early American Museum, at Lake of the Woods Park.


Urbana High School chess champion used early losses as motivation

URBANA — Talk to Urbana High School student Yue "Penny" Xu, and you'd find her a good-natured, talkative high school sophomore.

But play chess with her, and you might get a different impression.

Her coach at Urbana, Jeff Davis, has played her in tournaments and said she's focused and serious while playing.


Park district tries strobes to keep geese away

URBANA — Those blinking lanterns in Crystal Lake aren't runway lights to help geese land in the water.

Far from it.

The flashing lights are designed to keep the ever-growing goose population out of the lake.


Grant funding restoration of Cattle Bank building windows

CHAMPAIGN — The oldest documented commercial building in the city is getting a few repairs with the help of a $7,995 grant from the Community Foundation of East Central Illinois.


July 4th fireworks to go back to UI

CHAMPAIGN — This year's Independence Day fireworks will be back at the University of Illinois, and the 5K race and parade will be moved up two hours to avoid the heat, the new president of the Champaign County Freedom Celebration Committee said Monday.


Longtime Champaign Park District board member calling it quits

Newt Dodds, a member of the Champaign Park District board since 1975, will not run for another term in the April 9 park board election.

And there are only two candidates for two open spots on both the Champaign and Urbana park boards.

Alvin Griggs is unopposed for a four-year term on the Champaign board, and Tim McMahon is unopposed for a six-year term.


Danville weighing its own licensing process for video gambling

DANVILLE — With three Danville establishments already approved for the new state-licensed video-gambling machines, and at least one with terminals churning out winnings and government revenue, the city has decided to consider a local licensing process that would require the establishments to get a sticker and pay a fee for the machines.