For the retirees Jan. 6, 2013

For information about services available to older adults, contact Karen Bodnar, director of the Retired and Senior Volunteer Program (RSVP) and Helen Mary Stevick Senior Citizens Center, 48 E. Main St., Champaign, IL 61820, phone 359-6500.

RSVP and the Stevick Senior Center are administered by Family Services of Champaign County.

Getting Personal: Todd Thorstenson

Getting Personal is an email Q&A with a local personality. Here, a chat with Todd Thorstenson, a Champaign entrepreneur whose business ventures have included a record label, a restaurant and  real estate.

Studio Visit: Molly Netter

Studio Visit appears in Sunday editions of The News-Gazette. Here, Melissa Merli visits with vocalist and musician Molly Netter of Urbana, who now is at Yale University.

Q: You're in grad school now at Yale. What's the name of your program?

Career with a Camera: Robert K. O'Daniell looks back at 43 years at newspaper

News-Gazette photographer Robert K. O'Daniell — known to friends and coworkers as "RK" — has captured more than 40 years' worth of Champaign-Urbana news.

He's taken photos of Presidents Gerald Ford, Ronald Reagan, both George Bushes and Barack Obama.

He shot the first FarmAid concert in 1985 and covered the Flyin' Illini playing in the 1989 Final Four in Seattle.

Blogger chronicles downtown's buildings

CHAMPAIGN — When T.J. Blakeman goes for a walk in downtown Champaign, he sees not just the buildings as they are, he sees what they were.

The man who is a city planner by day and preserver of history in his off hours recently launched a blog about those buildings that he hopes will speak to others about Champaign's past and get them to build on it as well.

Champaign County CASA scheduled training

URBANA — Champaign County CASA will conduct training classes for potential new advocates to speak up for the more than 400 abused and neglected children in the Champaign County court system.

Advocates become the eyes and ears of the court and work with the child and social service agencies to ensure that the best interests of the child are met throughout the legal process.

$100,000 winning ticket sold at Philo store

PHILO — The new year got off to a good start for one Philo gas station customer.

The Illinois Lottery announced Friday that a $100,000 winning Lucky Day Lotto (formerly Little Lotto) ticket was sold Thursday at the Casey's General Store at 408 N. Lincoln St. in Philo.

UI history professor to discuss, sign new book in Springfield

SPRINGFIELD — Author Bruce Levine, a history professor at the University of Illinois, will discuss his book "The Fall of the House of Dixie: The Civil War and the Social Revolution that Transformed the South" on Jan. 9.

Dealt a tough hand, C-U native Nickerson persevered

Clarissa Nickerson grew up mostly in local foster homes, moving her stuff from place to place in garbage bags, and became a mom at age 16.

Now, Nickerson recently graduated with a bachelor's degree from Roosevelt University in Chicago, will soon start a master's program in legal studies and plans to be a lawyer by the time she turns 30.

On the Town: Corvette Club


Corvette Club's donation to BETH'S Place and Christmas Party event in Champaign on Saturday December 1, 2012