Top of the Morning, Sept. 24, 2018

Top of the Morning, Sept. 24, 2018

Look closely and you can tell that picture above of veteran News-Gazette reporter Tom Kacich is not from the Kickapoo Rail Trail — it's from a recent hike at Glacier National Park in Montana.

But it demonstrates Kacich's love of all things outdoors.

Which is why it wasn't a huge shock to those who know him that Kacich will be recognized by the Illinois Association of Park Districts as one of their "Best of the Best" at a banquet Oct. 12 at Wheeling Park District's Chevy Chase Country Club.

Kacich will be named the state's Top Journalist for his "tireless coverage of the Kickapoo Rail Trail development project, spanning as far back as the mid-1990s."

Kacich, who has taken to riding his bike to work, was flattered.

"Maybe it's the people I hang around with, but I got a lot of questions about the Kickapoo Rail Trail before and after it was built," Kacich said. "I knew there was a lot of interest in the project."

Kacich remains a big fan of the project.

"It's a neat project that was long overdue," he said. "I just hope I'm around to see it extended into Vermilion County."

Also being honored Oct. 12 will be Outstanding Citizen Volunteer of the Year BOB ESPESETH for his 45 years of volunteer work for the Champaign County Forest Preserve District.

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