Exhibit to mark 100th anniversary of Springfield riot

SPRINGFIELD – An exhibition marking the 100th anniversary of the race riot in Springfield will open Saturday at the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library in downtown Springfield.

"Something so Horrible: The Springfield Race Riot of 1908" will remain on display through October in the Presidential Library. Admission is free. The exhibition, guest curated by historian Carole Merritt, features original items, some on display for the first time, from the library's collections as well as materials loaned by institutions and private citizens. In connection to the exhibition, the Presidential Library and Museum is developing a series of public and educational programs.

Master-plan study of Champaign buildings OK'd

CHAMPAIGN – Despite some reservations about whether the city needs to hire another consultant, city council members voted 7-1 Tuesday night to order a study of city buildings.

Architectural Spectrum will be paid up to $40,000 to prepare a master plan over the next three or four months. The Champaign firm will inspect city facilities, identify maintenance and rehabilitation needs, prepare cost estimates and develop a prioritized schedule for completing the work.

Vermilion fair pageant director calling it quits after 10 years

DANVILLE – When Amy Wright watches her 2008 Vermilion County Fair Queen contestants take to the runway this year, it will be with a lot of pride and a tinge of regret.

This is Wright's 10th year as the pageant director – and her last.

Downtown Urbana bar won't reopen

URBANA – "The Office, Est. 1979," reads the sign above the downtown bar and restaurant.

But the longtime Urbana nightspot won't make it to its 30th birthday.

Advice to be offered on starting, expanding a business

CHAMPAIGN – Folks wanting free advice and answers about starting – or expanding – a business have a golden opportunity next Monday.

Representatives from at least seven organizations will be available to provide one-on-one counseling at the Champaign County Urban League office, 314 S. Neil St., C, from 9:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. that day.

Rain puts planting on hold

HOMER – The bright sun warmed Kent Krukewitt's farm fields in rural Homer on Tuesday afternoon, but it was too muddy to get into the fields to plant.

"I still have 60 percent of my soybeans left to plant, and a good portion of the 40 percent that is in the ground may have to be replanted," Krukewitt said.

Danville Goody's won't close until August

DANVILLE – People may be able to shop at Goody's at Danville's Village Mall for another 2 1/2 months.

Goody's Family Clothing Inc. officials said Tuesday they anticipate most of the 69 stores they're closing across the country, as part of a Chapter 11 reorganization, will stay open through the end of August.

Suspect has history of refusing to cooperate

URBANA – A Champaign man sentenced to prison in May but who did not turn himself in as ordered to begin serving that sentence was arrested Monday on a warrant and then would not cooperate Tuesday for arraignment on a new drug charge.

Judge Richard Klaus ordered Champaign County corrections officials to ship Maurice Beauregard, 25, whose last known address was in the 1000 block of Pomona Drive, Champaign, to state prison as soon as possible if Beauregard continued not to cooperate at the jail today. Klaus set bond for Beauregard on the new drug charge at $250,000.

Vote on TIF district set for opponent's absence

RANTOUL – A village board member says he's disappointed he won't be able to vote on the creation of a controversial tax-increment-financing district.

Village board member Cliff White said he opposes a proposal to launch a district that would include the downtown area as well as a 350-lot residential subdivision and an adjacent commercial subdivision planned by developer Joe Warner.

Homer officials working to take down Main Street building

HOMER – Community members, the mayor and the village board are all in agreement that a dilapidated, 19th-century building on Main Street will have to be demolished.

Mayor David Lucas said there have been many efforts to rescue the Homer Beach building at 127 S. Main St., but now the best option is for the village to get possession of the property, demolish the structure and sell the lot for redevelopment.