Judging this contest no trivial pursuit

Are you a trivia buff? Test your knowledge on a sample of 25 questions from Champaign Central Music Boosters' Trivia Night at the end of this column.


I like trivia. I like to think I know a lot of trivia.

I’m a reporter; we deal in facts (mostly).

But I’m also in that “I know this but I just can’t think of it” stage of my life.

Area history, Feb. 15, 2016

In 1916, Tina Kimball, a well-known Urbana character, was arrested last night by Sheriff Charles Vandervort and Officer Isacc McDade on a charge of stealing enough lumber from the Big Four shops to erect a barn. He was locked up in the county jail. The barn was erected last fall on Frank Rayburn's lot north of the Big Four shops. After the barn was completed, it was sold.

Those Who Served: 'The Germans zeroed in on us pretty good'

URBANA — With a shell-shocked soldier for a companion, Ray Heckler drove a Jeep near the Rhine River as shells landed all around the road.

"The youngster went to pot every time the artillery went off, and it was my job to get him out, on a train," says Heckler, 93, who spent most of his adult life in the service, and faced death in World War II.

Ted Kooser: An American Life in Poetry, Feb. 14, 2016

By Ted Kooser/U.S. Poet Laureate, 2004-06

Reluctant Townie: Looking for election love? Cupid for hire

It had been over a decade since Cupid took up residence in Las Vegas. With marriage rates declining and hookup culture on the rise, it seemed fitting that he take it easy on himself in the 21st century.

Studio Visit: Baub Alred

Studio Visit is a Q&A with a local artist. Here, a chat with Baub Alred. The artist and manager of Ippatsu Salon in Champaign recently chatted with The News-Gazette's Melissa Merli.

Tell me about your first name, Baub.

The Big 10 with Jeff D'Alessio, Feb. 14, 2016

With florists' own Super Bowl today, we asked 10 of them: What's the most unique order you've ever taken?

KENT MILES, Illinois Willows, Seymour

Getting Personal: Phillip W. Edwards

Getting Personal is a Q&A with a local personality. Here, 49-year-old Savoy resident Phillip W. Edwards, Urbana's fire marshal, chats with The News-Gazette's Paul Wood.

How did you become a firefighter? Do you have a military background?

Area history, Feb. 14, 2016

In 1916, Antone Spanglo, an Italian, was arrested Sunday morning after 300 pounds of copper wire was found in the basement of his home at 700 N. Market St., Champaign. It is claimed that the wire was taken from a building at the University of Illinois.

Rob Kanter/Environmental Almanac: Birding abroad, part 2

Although the other members of my family enjoy a range of outdoor activities when we travel together, I like to spend more time birding than they do. I especially enjoy staking out a spot near where we stay where I can spend some quality time with my camera early in the morning.