Urbana neighborhood residents seek historic district

URBANA – Daniel Folk has lived in the 800 block of West Main Street in Urbana for 27 years, first as a renter and, since 1990, as a homeowner.

Like some of his preservation-minded neighbors, Folk and his wife, Karma, have painstakingly restored their two-story, Queen Anne-style home at 807 W. Main St.

Paxton council halts heated raffle discussion

PAXTON – A heated discussion about the raffle house in Paxton came to a sudden halt Monday as the Paxton City Council voted 5-1 to silence a resident requesting answers from Mayor Bill Ingold.

Resident Scott Stocking raised issues with the council about the legality of the newest raffle license issued to a charity for the operation of King Richard's Raffle House.

Oakwood mayor appoints new police chief

OAKWOOD – Mayor Tom Cook announced that Oakwood will go back to having a full-time police chief and appointed patrolman Josh Bennett to the position, effective Oct. 22.

Cook said he appointed Bennett rather than current chief Hugh Sands because of Cook's education, his relationship with emergency response teams and the fact that he lives in Oakwood.

Farmer City approves two-year contract with fair group

FARMER CITY – Council members narrowly approved a proposal that will keep the existing relationship between the Farmer City Fair Association and the city alive for two more years.

The two-year contract will extend the fair board's lease on the property long enough to let the public have a say in the matter in next election of council members in spring 2009.

Event to spotlight immigrant services

DANVILLE – On Monday afternoon at La Hacienda on Vermilion Street, owner Maria Herrada rang up purchases of Mexican candy and pre-made tamale mix, sold a few phone cards and completed a money wire transaction, all in the course of 10 minutes.

Herrada has lived in the area for 20 years, moving from Mexico to be with her husband's family. She said services geared toward Hispanics, once scarce, are becoming more available in the community. But not many Hispanics are aware of what is available, Herrada said.

Bresee funding up for vote

DANVILLE – Last week, the owner of Bresee Tower sent a check for nearly $33,500 to Downtown Danville Inc. to help pay for putting protective scaffolding around the crumbling building and assessing the cost of repairs to its terra cotta exterior.

Now, the Vermilion County Board must decide whether to release $15,000 it pledged for the project.

Motorola exec sees phones getting personal

Thanks to the wonders of materials science, your future mobile phone may change its color depending on the time of day or what you're wearing.

It's almost certain to change its touch-screen face, presenting you with the familiar look of a music or video player, a camera, or even a plain old phone pad as the need arises.

Firefighters train with new rescue tube

MONTICELLO – Lee Ewers, Bryce Dubson and Jeremy Dunlap worked quietly while wading up to their knees in golden corn.

Lights from Monticello Fire Department's trucks shone on an enormous peak of the grain near the former General Cable building on the outskirts of Monticello in the evening training session.

Benefit set to help woman's seven children

TOLONO – A benefit scheduled for the same day as Naomi Arnette's memorial service will ensure that she – and the seven children she left behind – aren't forgotten.

The benefit, scheduled for 5 p.m. Saturday at CJ Dane's in Tolono, will follow Mrs. Arnette's visitation from 1 to 3 p.m. and memorial service at 3 p.m., both of which are to take place at the R.E. Franks Center at 112 W. Madison in Philo.

Businessman puts roof over items up for auction

DANVILLE – A local businessman will expand his auctioneering business this week-end with his first in-house auction, featuring a 2003 Harley-Davidson motorcycle and three partial estates.

Don Crist of Crist & Associates Auction & Realty will open the auction floor at 8 a.m. Saturday for customers to register and get their bid numbers, then begin the auction at 10 a.m. The indoor auction site is at the southeast corner of Harrison and Walnut streets, which formerly housed the Butternut Bread Store. Crist's office, also a part of the building, is at 147 N. Walnut St.