Top of the Morning, May 5, 2014: From the archives

Sunday was the 44th anniversary of the shootings at Kent State.

And to this day, college students turn their impassioned views outward.

From burning draft cards to candlelight vigils, the campus of the University of Illinois has been home to student demonstrations for decades.

Area history, May 4, 2014

Today is Sunday, May 4, 2014. Here are news reports from this date 100, 50 and 15 years ago:

SlideOScope invention offers 'interactive' way to look at pictures

URBANA — Optical scientist Donald Barnhart has come up with a novel way of viewing your favorite photos, with a device that resembles a kaleidoscope.

His invention is called a SlideOScope. By sliding apart the instrument's two cylindrical tubes, you can see one of your photos morph into a second photo, and then to a third, fourth and fifth.

Change marks history of Stocks

CHAMPAIGN — Maggie McGuire went to work for Stocks Inc. as a Xerox machine operator in 1979.

Thirty-five years later, she owns the company, and it's a drastically different operation from when she first signed on.

Today, Stocks sells office furniture, but when the company was founded by Joe Stocks in 1954, it was a blueprint and photography service.

Farewell, old friend

It wasn't easy leaving the house I grew up in

WESTVILLE — I knew I would have to let go.

I knew one day I would have to say good-bye to my childhood home — the big, old house built by my father's cousins, the only childhood home I've known.

The buyers and my family closed on Thursday.

For the retirees, May 4-11, 2014

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.

Melissa Merli: Stone kept his promise

When director Oliver Stone first started working on "Born on the Fourth of July," Al Pacino was slated to play Ron Kovic, the young Marine paralyzed by a bullet during the Vietnam War.

With Pacino on board, the cast and crew rehearsed for two weeks. Then funding for the movie fell apart.

At the time, Pacino was a major star but 37 or 38 years old.

Studio Visit: Zoe Mann

Studio Visit is a Q&A with a local artist. Here, a chat with Zoe Mann, a 22-year-old Parkland College student, who is studying chemical engineering and is a peer tutor. She also is a "knitting genius," according to her mom, Cindy. Three of her artworks were in the college's Art and Design Student Juried Exhibition 2014, which closed Saturday.

Letter from Birdland: Flowers aren't the only things sprouting quickly

In Birdland, the skies are gray, but the drizzle enriches the color. Tulips have added their pinks, reds and oranges, and even whites to the daffodils' yellow. The little redbud tree holds its pink close to the dark brown of the wood, with no intervening leaves. The ornamental quince sprinkles its shell-like flowers amongst the new greenery.

Reluctant Townie: More buried treasures waiting to be discovered

Last week, a film crew in New Mexico unearthed a fabled mass grave of over 1 million "E.T.: The Extra-Terrestrial" Atari 2600 video game cartridges. The cartridges had been unceremoniously dumped in a landfill by the game's publisher out of "corporate shame" over three decades ago.