Parks and Recreation
MONTICELLO — The council approved two measures aimed at providing funding for recreation facilities.
The first earmarks video gaming revenues toward a new parks and playground equipment fund.
MAHOMET — Work could begin as soon as this year on two of the three multi-use trail projects in Champaign County that are getting more than $2.5 million in federal funds trough the Illinois Department of Transportation.
CHAMPAIGN — The park district asked kids who play at Douglass Park what they wanted in a future version of the park — and some of that wish list may be reality soon.
The Champaign Park District won a $300,000 grant from the state earlier this month to improve the park at Fifth and Grove streets, a project that could cost an estimated $600,000 and begin this summer.
CHICAGO — Champaign County is set to receive more than $2.6 million in grants for trails and bike paths, Governor Pat Quinn's office announced Saturday.
The Champaign County Forest Preserve District is the big winner, receiving $1.84 million for a multi-use trail in eastern Champaign County and $293,780 for a bicycle and pedestrian trail in Mahomet.
MONTICELLO — After the economy bottomed out in 2008, the Allerton Park and Retreat Center's concerts and other public programming went on hiatus.
Last year, though, the park began to kick public programming into high gear, having turned to the community for help rather than look for funding internally.
The head of the Shelby County Office of Tourism said it will be very beneficial to the area to have a golf course at a state park reopen later this week.
OAKWOOD — There will be some new faces along Clear Lake Trail in Kickapoo State Park this year, but hikers may have to search to spot them.
More than 20 hand-carved, wooden "spirit faces" will be nestled among the trees along a section of the trail called "Spooky Hollow."
SPRINGFIELD — The Champaign Park District will receive a $300,000 grant for improvements at Douglass Park.
The grant, announced over the weekend by Gov. Pat Quinn, is among $16.5 million that will be spent on 46 local park projects across the state.
Quinn said they're part of his agenda "to ensure that no child is left inside."
Another sure sign it's spring in Illinois: rainbows.
A rite of the season for more than 40 years, Illinois natural resources officials stocked 47 designated ponds, lakes and creeks across the state last month with more than 60,000 Missouri-raised rainbow trout in preparation for today's 5 a.m. opening of its spring catchable trout program.