Orpheum sets 2009 Kids' Building Fair for Saturday

CHAMPAIGN – The Orpheum Children's Science Museum will be hopping, jumping and creating Saturday, when the museum hosts the 2009 Kids' Building Fair from 11 a.m to 4 p.m.. Hands-on, children will learn about building trades, jump around in the Interactive Adventures bounce house, learn about alternative energy resources and meet Louis Lightning Bug and members of the Champaign Fire Department to talk about home safety.

Outside admission to the museum, 346 N. Neil St., C, is free. Inside admission ($2 for kids; $3 for adults) grants access to a Rube Goldberg machine inspired by Dr. Seuss and built by a group of local home-schooled students.

Second round of our Tweeties' iPod song choices

The News-Gazette is in its second week of its iPod Shuffle giveaway, which means even more of our Twitter followers submitted the first song they'd put on the iPod if they won. Here's a list of the songs they chose. Check e3 through the month of May to see more music choices.

Illinois Press Association chief to retire after 24 years

SPRINGFIELD – David L. Bennett has announced his retirement as executive director of the Illinois Press Association, and a national search is under way for his replacement.

Bennett has led the state newspaper association for 24 years. He will be succeeded on an interim basis by Donald M. Craven, who has been the agency's attorney for about 20 years.

Savoy trustees get details about AT&T's U-verse

SAVOY – AT&T representative John Quinn answered questions from the village board Wednesday about U-verse – the company's new Internet Protocol network – which will be offered starting this summer to selected parts of Savoy as well as Champaign, Urbana and Danville.

The network will provide services, which AT&T said are a competitive alternative to cable, such as Internet-based TV, high-quality videos and games.

Highway work planned on Interstate 74 near Mahomet

MAHOMET – Motorists can expect delays later this month on Interstate 74 near Mahomet.

Illinois Department of Transportation spokeswoman Marisa Kollias said crews are resurfacing, patching, milling and making other improvements to I-74 between Mansfield and Mahomet beginning May 26.

Delays expected on Illinois 105 in rural Piatt County

BEMENT – Motorists can expect delays on Illinois 105 in rural Piatt County beginning next week.

Marisa Kollias of the Illinois Department of Transportation said work crews will patch, mill and resurface Illinois 105 from Illinois 32 to the Bement village limits starting May 20.

Vermilion County officials keeping eye on river levels

DANVILLE - Local officials were closely watching rising river levels throughout Vermilion County for signs of flash flooding.

Late Wednesday afternoon, the Illinois Department of Natural Resources restricted boating on the Middle Fork River, which was rising rapidly, said Ted Fisher, director of the Vermilion County Emergency Management Agency.

CSX wants to keep Sunset crossing in Danville shut

DANVILLE – CSX Railroad officials want to permanently close the railroad crossing on Sunset Road, to the dismay of residents who live in that area on Danville's north end.

The crossing was temporarily closed within the last few years, partly to accommodate the reconstruction of Winter Avenue in Danville. CSX staged trains at the grade-separation crossing over Winter Avenue, but had to do that farther north during the project.

Savoy board votes to buy right of way for Curtis Road

SAVOY – Village officials say they're close to resolving a jurisdictional dispute with Champaign Township over Curtis Road – and they say that $11 million road project should be able to move forward as planned this summer.

The village board voted 6-0 Wednesday night in favor of an ordinance approving the acquisition of 18 acres of right of way for Curtis Road, between Prospect Avenue to about a quarter-mile east of Mattis Avenue, from Champaign County.

Champaign reviewing lessons from Gateway Studios

CHAMPAIGN – Gateway Studios was officially condemned by the city Wednesday. No-trespassing signs and "condemned" stickers are now posted all over the sprawling former motel building at 1505 N. Neil St.

With the immediate crisis over, city officials are assessing what lessons they can take from the abrupt closure of Gateway.