Volunteering puts 'energy' in 92-year-old

CHAMPAIGN — Social justice is just another term for common sense.

That’s how Ellen McDowell sees it.

“It’s just the recognition that each person’s life means as much to them as yours does to you. They are deserving as much as you are,” says McDowell, the longtime financial director and volunteer for the Catholic Worker House and its Daily Bread Soup Kitchen.

Those Who Served: Fear not a factor for Vietnam vet

RANTOUL — You know you’re in a typhoon when you have to jam your knees into the sand just to stay upright.

That’s what Vietnam veteran Spec. 4 Steve Douglas remembers about being stationed at logistics base “Wunder Beach” —  nicknamed for Col. Charles Sunder, whose men took the beach in 1968.

During Typhoon Bess, the Wunder was going under.

That's entertainment: Spotlighting events throughout the area

Here's what's happening the in the area's ...


Nashville musicians to visit Virginia Theatre

Three Nashville musicians, among them the steel pedal player for George Jones, will perform at 7:30 p.m. Saturday at the Virginia Theatre in a fundraiser for Villa Grove Elite Softball.

N-G sports section earns national honors

LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. — For the seventh consecutive year, The News-Gazette sports section was named one of the country's best by the Associated Press Sports Editors in its annual writing and sections contest.

The N-G received a Top 10 nod for both its Daily Section and Special Section in the 30,000-75,000 circulation division.

Don Follis: Let God give you the gift of forgiveness

Driving along farm fields east of Peoria last week, my mind took me back to when I worked as a teen-age farm hand for a mumbling, short-tempered man. On my last day before starting high school football practice, the man handed me a paycheck and shook my hand. With a wry smile, he said, "Good luck, boy. You're the first kid ever to work for me that I couldn't teach how to do this job."

Getting Personal: Amy Hassinger

Each week, we offer a Q&A with a local personality. Today, 44-year-old Urbana resident Amy Hassinger, a writer, manuscript consultant and faculty mentor in the University of Nebraska at Omaha MFA in Writing program, chats with The News-Gazette's Melissa Merli.

What interests you the most right now?

Ask 'Mimi,' March 12, 2017

Did you work with Willie Summerville?

The Reluctant Townie: A cool plan for ending Unofficial

Last weekend, Champaign-Urbana played host to its annual orgy of excessive drinking and poor decision-making, Unofficial St. Patrick's Day.

Studio Visit: Frank Niemeyer

Frank Niemeyer of Champaign is a trombonist, composer, educator and UI doctoral of musical arts degree candidate in jazz performance. He also is a member of the award-winning UI Jazz Trombone Ensemble.

How long were you living in New York before you came here?

Susan McKinney: Author offers a balm for the soul

In "The Keeper of Lost Things," author Ruth Hogan has written a beautiful story of love lost and found. Friendships forged and disrupted; life coming full circle.

A celebrated author of short stories, Anthony Peardew is the Keeper of Lost Things. Peardew lost his fiancee early in life, and it so affected him, he collects things that people leave behind or dropped.