Letter from Birdland: A good idea has started to percolate ...

In Birdland, it's unseasonably warm, but I still call it winter when I step out of work into a dark street. The time change gets me up earlier in the morning and pulls me to bed earlier at night.

Melissa Merli: Best-artists lists often leave out women, minorities

When I first saw the blurb on the cover of the most recent issue of Vanity Fair magazine asking, "Who are the six greatest living artists?", my first thought was "sez who?"

Getting Personal: Gale Walden

Each week, we offer an email Q&A with a local personality. Today, Paul Wood chats with poet Gale Walden of Urbana. She describes herself as a "writer, teacher, mother and a bunch of other things."

So ... what's new with you?

Students rally to cause dear to teacher's heart

VILLA GROVE — Normally 11- and 12-year-olds don't require shaving anyway, but Barb Cler's fifth grade class honored their teacher and No Shave November on Thursday by donning mustaches in support of prostate cancer awareness and research.

Cler was selected as Villa Grove School's Teacher of the Day on Thursday, and she chose to promote a topic near and dear to her on that special day.

Cause just grows on you

Half of Urbana police force participating in 'No Shave November'

URBANA — A couple dozen police officers are loosening up on their uniform rules for a month during "No Shave November," and putting the razor away for a good cause.

Music Q&A: Tom Turino

This week, The News-Gazette's Paul Wood chats with Tom Turino, who plays in several bands and has a new CD coming out.

Turino moved to Urbana 27 years ago from Austin, Texas, for a job as an ethnomusicologist at the University of Illinois. He began playing in bands here the next year, in a group that became the Squeezetones.

New photo exhibit documents golden era in C-U music history

In the 1980s, when the Walkman and MTV were innovations and digital downloads were science fiction, there was real, live rock music to be heard and danced to almost any night of the week in Champaign-Urbana.

A now-defunct Campustown bar, Mabel's, had bands on stage five or six days a week, and places like Panama Red's, the Alley Cat, Chico's and others had multiple offerings.

Two selected for DHS Wall of Fame

DANVILLE — A Champaign man who helped develop and expand the country's leading high-performance supercomputing center at the University of Illinois is one of two inductees to this year's Danville High School's Wall of Fame.

Illinois Ancestors: Another 150th anniversary

As the country continues to commemorate the 150th anniversary of the Civil War, an important event should be remembered on Nov. 19. It was on that date in 1863 that President Lincoln gave his Gettysburg Address at the dedication of the national cemetery there.

The principal speaker that day was Edward Everett, and Lincoln was also asked to make a "few appropriate remarks."

My Amish Home: Adventures in pingpong, skating, biking

"But if the Spirit of him that raised up Jesus from the dead dwell in you, he that raised up Christ from the dead shall also quicken your mortal bodies by his Spirit that dwelleth in you. Therefore, brethren, we are debtors, not to the flesh, to live after the flesh.

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