Weekend Update, Oct. 4, 2014: And the bands marched on

Almost everyone loves a parade. Same goes for marching bands. And if you love them and want to hear many at one swoop, head to Charleston today for the 38th annual Panther Marching Band Festival. The field competition for high school bands gets underway at 9:45 a.m.

Director of UI Prairie Research Institute stepping down

CHAMPAIGN — The founding director of the University of Illinois Prairie Research Institute is stepping down after six years and plans to retire next year.

William Shilts has been head of the research institute since it was created in 2008 to house state scientific surveys when they were transferred to the UI from the state's Department of Natural Resources.

Top of the Morning, Oct. 4, 2014

Urbana's student body didn't have to wait until Friday night's homecoming football game against rival Centennial to cut loose.

The Tigers went bonkers hours earlier in Oscar Adams Gym when Steve Waller kissed a pig. Yep, the dean in charge of discipline planted a wet one right on the snout of a piglet provided by the Illinois Farm Bureau.

Innovative program teaches math concepts at Robeson

CHAMPAIGN — Modern day elementary school math: now featuring Chromebooks, video games and a digital penguin named JiJi.

Tuscola Hall of Fame inductee has a job like no other

TUSCOLA — Rest assured, no other member of Tuscola High School's Class of '81 has a job quite like Rick Mooday's.

An engineer, he makes a living by keeping an eye on the nation's nuclear arsenal at New Mexico's Los Alamos National Laboratory, one of just two facilities in the country where classified nuclear weapon design is conducted.

Since you asked: Why not install Central air?

Today's question: Has the district discussed the possibility of installing air-conditioning at Central High School? We older folks can't understand how we got through school without central air.

Discuss? Yes.

DACC trustee won't run again

DANVILLE — A longtime Danville Area Community College trustee said she won't seek re-election on April 7.

Sandi Randall, a Realtor from Danville, said it's been an honor and privilege to serve on the DACC board and "to give back to this community that has been so good to me and to my family."

Here's more on White Heath

White Heath Elementary School is the latest school in Piatt County to be awarded a Blue Ribbon. Here are four things readers may not know about the second and third grade school in the Monticello Community Unit School District.

1. The school practices differentiated instruction.

White Heath earns U.S. Blue Ribbon designation

WHITE HEATH — When White Heath Elementary School Principal Emily Weidner says her school has always "been great," she is probably qualified to make that assessment. Not only is she in her seventh year as the facility's principal, but in her childhood attended White Heath through eighth grade.