Counselors head to Edison after death of teacher

CHAMPAIGN – Counselors from several Champaign schools are at Edison Middle School on Wednesday, helping staff and students deal with the death of a teacher there.

Curtis W. McKinney, 47, of Champaign was pronounced dead at 8:37 a.m. Wednesday at his home, according to Champaign County Coroner Duane Northrup.

Around the Big Ten

News from the home cities (and sometimes states) of the Big Ten universities:

WISCONSIN: Minors barred from drinking in bars with parents

'You don't find too many people like Erma'

URBANA – Erma Tyler had a lot of unofficial relatives around town, all drawn to her big heart.

'Severe case of sticker shock' on estimate for King School renovation

URBANA – Urbana school board members had a number of questions about the preliminary design for renovations at King Elementary School at a special meeting Tuesday night.

They asked about the relocation of the entrance to the school, plans for a courtyard, the size of the gym, and efforts to make the morning drop-off safer.

YMCA partnership with Larkin's Place shaped decision to donate

CHAMPAIGN – Rick and Jeanene Stephens said the partnership between Larkin's Place and the Champaign County YMCA shaped their decision to give $5 million to the YMCA building project.

Exec, wife make $5 million donation toward new YMCA in Champaign

CHAMPAIGN – Horizon Hobby Chairman Rick Stephens and his wife Jeanene have made a $5 million gift toward construction of a new Champaign County YMCA in southwest Champaign.

With that "lead gift" in hand, the YMCA hopes to raise a total of $15 million to $20 million for the new facility, YMCA Chief Executive Officer Mark Johnson said Tuesday.

Fresh produce joins health official's fight against obesity, disease

CHAMPAIGN – The way Julie Pryde sees it, one of the best ways to reverse the obesity epidemic in America is to teach people how to grow their own fruits and vegetables and give them an opportunity to try it.

A buck a bag? Books!

HOOPESTON – The Hoopeston Public Library has a deal for bargain hunting book lovers.

Through April 30, the library is offering its "April Shower of Books" sale. Readers can buy a bag of books for $1.

Auditorium at Centennial to be renamed to honor family

CHAMPAIGN – Clif Aldridge grew up on Centennial High School's stage.

He came to rehearsals as a small child, with his mother, Sue Aldridge, who's taught English and drama at Centennial for 19 years. He performed on the stage as a high school student.

So it's fitting that the auditorium will be named for him and his family this weekend.

Edison students get excited demonstrations about science

DANVILLE – Can a man tip an open container of ice water over three people's heads without getting them wet?

Students at Edison Elementary School know the answer is yes.

As some suggested, he could turn the liquid into gas, freeze it, even tip the container in outer space where there's no gravity.