Ag conservation to be focus of free breakfast at Parkland

CHAMPAIGN – Area farmers can learn about ag conservation practices at a free breakfast next week at Parkland College.

The Illnois Stewardship Alliance is hosting a conservation stewardship breakfast at 7:30 a.m. Wed., Dec. 10 at the Tony Noel Agricultural Technology Center at Parkland College.

Arthur selected as one of 9 hosts for 2009 Illinois Dairy Days

ARTHUR – A state program highlighting Illinois' dairy industry is coming to Arthur.

Mike Hutjens, University of Illinois Extension dairy specialist, announced Wednesday that Arthur has been selected as one of nine communities that will host 2009's Illinois Dairy Days.

Woman served rural poor in rural Douglas, Edgar counties

BROCTON – Helen Taylor, founder of the House of Refuge mission near Brocton, always told people you don't have to look far to find someone in need. It was especially true of Sister Helen, as she was called, because people in need seemed to always find her.

Vermilion County Speedway switching races to Saturdays

DANVILLE – A new promoter based in Greencastle, Ind., will be running the Vermilion County Speedway next year and plans to move race nights to Saturdays.

"We're going to shake things up," said Joe Spiker, 33, of Spiker Promotions, who recently signed a two-year lease with the Vermilion County Fair board, which owns the track and fairgrounds but doesn't run the speedway.

Danville Gardens to stop offering poinsettias after this year

DANVILLE – For 15 years, a sea of colorful poinsettias has filled greenhouses during the fall and early winter at Danville Gardens.

Illinois Terminal proposal dead

CHAMPAIGN – An upset U.S. Rep. Timothy Johnson, saying he's unhappy about not being consulted by city and mass-transit officials, has come out strongly against a proposed expansion of Illinois Terminal to accommodate a "park-and-ride" child care facility.

And that opposition will likely kill the tentative project, which was dependent on $2.3 million in federal funding that Johnson's office had helped to secure.

86-room Comfort Suites on its way up in Urbana

URBANA – Construction is under way on an 86-room Comfort Suites hotel in north Urbana, just off of Lincoln Avenue, that is expected to open this August.

The hotel will be located just east of the existing Holiday Inn and south of the Speedway gas station on the west side of Lincoln Avenue, near Interstate 74.

Ag economist promotes peer advisory groups for farmers

URBANA – Some independent family farmers are turning to peer advisory groups to help their farming operations to thrive in today's uncertain economy, according to an ag economist.

Danny Klinefelter, a professor of ag economics at Texas A&M University, said independent farmers need the advice and support of fellow farmers to stay on the cutting edge of financial success in an era of rapid changes in the farm economy.

Danville Boys & Girls Club presenting free budgeting seminar

DANVILLE – The Boys & Girls Club in Danville is partnering with Western-Southern Financial Group to present a free budgeting seminar at 6:30 p.m. Thursday at the club, 850 N. Griffin St.

The seminar will cover setting up personal financial goals and plans, creating and following a budget, understanding your current financial picture and planning for the future.

Area police respond to dozens of accidents

Slick roads, streets, highways and interstates kept state and city police, sheriff's deputies and tow-truck crews busy all day Monday and into the night, responding to accidents and pulling vehicles out of ditches throughout East Central Illinois, according to area law enforcement officials.

From 6 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday, Illinois State Police in Pesotum handled more than 45 accidents on the three local interstates, but the majority were on Interstates 57 and 74, according to Master Sgt. Mike Garza.