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We’re in the midst of a wild, hectic time at The News-Gazette.

That includes the transition from fall to winter sports in the high school realm.

Entering the second week of November, our only remaining fall sports ties were St. Joseph-Ogden volleyball, four football teams and the area girls’ swimming and diving contingent.

Oh, and our seemingly endless Faces of Fall photos. The last of those are scheduled to be printed Wednesday after more than 300 kids showed up to our downtown Champaign office last August.

And guess what? It’s time to do that all over again with our Faces of Winter.

Boys’ basketball, girls’ basketball, wrestling and boys’ swimming and diving competitors from across our area will make their way back to our facility for photos and more.

In our 2019 Faces of Fall event, we put the kids through a multitude of other activities versus just having them stand in line to wait for a photo.

There was a group social media station.

There was a survey to be filled out, with some of the responses running in print.

There was a radio booth, where some of our athletes got to record promotional material for our three stations.

There was a large cutout picturing the front page of The News-Gazette, allowing all kids to imagine themselves as state champions being celebrated by our newspaper.

And there was a GIF station, where we shot video of athletes hyping up their respective schools and sports for use on Twitter.

If everything goes according to plan, we’ll have all of those elements available once more, in addition to Robin Scholz snapping official photos of each kid.

One issue I’ll readily admit to from our first go-round with this setup was not getting all of the kids into the official photo room, which was slightly detached from the rest of the operation.

I’ll work this time to make sure signage is more clear, so all of the kids’ time here is appropriately spent.

We’re excited to be hosting another Faces event, especially considering how much positive feedback we received from the previous one.One fall item I also wanted to touch on was our All-Area coverage.

I’m woefully behind on compiling all the necessary nominations and other materials pertaining to this. Coaches have reached out to me wondering why they’ve yet to receive an email asking for athlete suggestions.

So I’m putting this out in print to make clear that I’ll be getting our fall All-Area coverage back on track in short order. Coaches should have nomination emails before a new week begins, and I expect All-Area packages to run as soon as possible for our nine fall sports.


Prep Sports Coordinator

Colin Likas is prep sports coordinator at The News-Gazette. His email is, and you can follow him on Twitter (@clikasNG).