Overcast weather, new ice-making equipment in Danville, O'Charley's gift cards, parking spaces at the Old Farm Shops, stop sign at the railroad tracks on Cardinal Road and noises made by trains and planes in Savoy. Plus much, much more.
A new life for the iconic "Carmon's" sign in Champaign, railroad cars all over White Heath, why Carle isn't Morris hospital, a book drive for prisoners, taste of Champaign-Urbana tap water and much, much more.
Updates pick-and-cut Christmas trees, IHSA tournaments in C-U, rumors of a Hy-Vee, restaurant, downtown huts and a very cool story about the little notch in the generally straight borderline between Vermilion and Edgar counties. Plus much, much more.
There's still time to drop questions into Tom's Mailbag, which drops at 2 p.m. today.
More on illegal parking in Campustown, the origin of Five Points, much-valued IDOT bicycle route maps, the darkened dome of Foellinger Auditorium and a suggestion that Illinois basketball should go back to Kenney Gym or Huff Hall.
Lots of history in this week's mailbag including the beautifully restored Solon House in Champaign, the beloved Wheats Steak House in Urbana, a totem pole in Homer and an addition to the venerable Red Lion in Campustown.
Mysterious lights in the sky, notorious heists from the UI Library, how the $24.3 million project at Champaign's International Prep Academy could be financed, what's going on at an old grocery store near downtown Urbana, mask-wearing college athletes, what happened to the snow ... and much, much more.
The charming story of the origin of the lighted Christmas trees in Champaign's Greencroft neighborhood, details about the new security fence around Danville's VA medical center, a lament about partisan politics in Champaign County, sad news about car seat safety checks, no news yet about the former Savoy 16 theaters and more information about the historic course of the Boneyard Creek. Plus, What is the proper term for residents of Champaign and Urbana?
This week's mailbag is fatter than the man who prepared a Thanksgiving feast for 12 and nobody showed.
We'll tell you about the basketball courts at Yankee Ridge School, the smell of skunk, what UI beef cattle are munching on this fall, COVID hospitalization figures around Illinois, abandoned gas stations, Lincoln Square's history and the first Kmart in Champaign.
We dismiss a 40-year local legend, go back to 1855 when Urbana tried to annex Champaign, find out about several local construction and redevelopment projects, explain the reason the intersection of Windsor & First is the way it is, explain KFC's paint job and hear from the newly elected Champaign County recorder.
Streetlights in Urbana, the outlet mall in Tuscola, new housing in Champaign, flashing yellow turn signal in Mahomet, a B-17 over Champaign, recycling cosmetics, donating winter clothing and the loss of in-person Greyhound ticket sales at the Illinois Terminal.
The mailbag staff got around this week, answering questions about Champaign, Urbana, Rantoul, Danville, Tuscola and even a restaurant chain in Texas.
It's like a kid's Halloween bag, an extensive variety of treats: the next hazardous waste collections, upcoming road improvement projects, the end of MCORE, a Champaign death investigation, Illini fan cutouts, community college enrollment, rad signs, MAGA caps, voting by mail, homes razed near Urbana High, trains through Champaign, I-57 traffic at Tuscola and Target near campus.
Events in a near-empty Memorial Stadium, an abandoned school building in Vermilion County, those Illinois American Water Co. envelopes, new solar panels that follow the sun, railroad crossings, manhole covers, electronics recycling, photographs of uncovered faces and the indoor Urbana farmers market.
Revisiting the tale of the Champaign girl at Monterey Pop, freight car graffiti, ballot signatures, presidential candidate succession, a shuttered dry cleaners, all those plastics involved in COVID testing plus a bunch of interstate and road construction queries.
A butterfly painted on a Champaign fence, an odd-looking structure in Mahomet, low flight approaches to Willard Airport, a Champaign girl in a famous movie filmed 53 years ago, a rock garden that once graced the University of Illinois campus, counting obituaries, more details on Hackberry Hill and much, much more.
Outdoor dining, expungements, Halloween trick or treating, Champaign high schools' progress, Urbana sunflowers, Daylight Saving Time, lights-out over an interstate bridge, the county treasurer's office and the best sledding hill in Champaign-Urbana.
Squirrels in Crystal Lake Park, concrete medians on I-74, smoke from the West Coast fires obscuring the sun over central Illinois, drive-through flu shots and the possible return of Illini hockey may in 2021.
Jeff D'Alessio's Big 10 column, administrator salaries, property tax bills, ballot drop boxes and a bunch of outdoor recreation-related questions in this week's 'bag: missing basketball rims, Champaign tracks, work at Busey Woods and pinpointing as close as possible the origin of the Embarras River.
UI forest plantation's name change, mental health care for Illinois prison inmates, a Jackie Robinson parking lot at the UI, crops at Parkland, a Champaign liquor store in trouble, poor landscaping around public art in C-U, , fast food choice in Tuscola and much more.
Landscaping around Carle at the Fields, the market for sunflowers, distances on the Kaufman Lake trail, the origin of the Embarras River, whether tobacco smoke can carry COVID-19, vulgar yard signs and a sometimes too-popular drive-thru in Champaign.
The cost of Champaign police station vandalism, 42 acres of sunflowers in Urbana, big trees in Champaign County, tagged geese in Champaign, a mystery on the Kickapoo Rail Trail and a whale that once graced Urbana. Plus much, much more.
Architectural features retained at the new Dr. Howard School, property tax payments, new auto dealership group in Savoy, black helicopters, commons areas in Champaign subdivisions, closed restaurants, the former home of the N-G and gift cards for the old Goodrich theater in Savoy.
Questions on trash dumped on township roads, Crystal Lake Park's new look, Parkland Way in Champaign, cameras on Interstate 74, Cardinal Road, gas prices in C-U, a distressing display of the Illinois state flag and promoting honors for the late, great Lou Henson.
Enforcement of COVID-19 rules on the University of Illinois campus, repairs to a Champaign traffic light after an alert from a mailbag reader, an update on Costco, an Urbana hotel project is stalled, a street in south Urbana literally is a parking lot, big parking meter collection losses because of the pandemic and the Bradley Avenue bridge over I-57.
Questions this week about Champaign's honorary Doxology Lane, Cubs games on Comcast, Plantation Point in Urbana, COVID-19 testing in Champaign, COVID-19 cases in Douglas County and so much more.
COVID, rough roads, sports, plastic bags, fireworks, school funding, weeds, trash collection, the weather radio station, the old Golden Corral site, geese and mugshots.
Work on bridge replacements in northwest Champaign, no fireworks this year at the Champaign Country Club, possibly illegal fireworks sales in Champaign County, the reasons for white tents dotting the University of Illinois campus, UI summer enrollment, traffic congestion in downtown Champaign, cemetery care, Canada geese and more.
Queries about a broad roadway in northern Champaign County, birdhouses in Meadowbrook Park, graffiti in Champaign, a permanently closed restaurant, lower gas prices, an overabundance of bunnies, possibly offensive street names and the possibility of Cubs game on TV.
Delays in roadwork on a bridge over I-57, of a parking lot at Urbana's Leal Park and in the opening of a fast food restaurant in Champaign. Also, an old school building, Carle AirLife flights and McDonald's Play Places.
This week: geese at Japan House, looting at Market Place, loud noises heard near downtown Champaign, the return of the weather radio station, the Kickapoo Rail Trail, Champaign picnic parks and that bald eagle family near Savoy.
The reopening of the University of Illinois and other Big Ten schools, rebuilding the failed downtown Champaign pedestrian mall, Riggs Beer, an image on a water tower in west Champaign, the condition of south U.S. 45, the peaceful protest march in Urbana on Monday, a strange pit on University of Illinois land and gobs more.
Nesting eagles in Savoy, a shuttered post office in Bondville, motorcylists in Urbana, a beach in DeWitt County, a proposed casino in Danville, a restaurant open for indoor dining in Arthur, portable commodes in downtown Champaign and much more.
Condition of Monticello Road and Springer Drive, a decrepit barn, noise from Champaign’s Kraft plant, an allegedly illegal sign on Interstate 74, county fairgrounds concerts, voting by mail, Moore Trees, Little Hearts & Hands Academy, COVID-19 statistics, Giorgi Bezhanishvili’s academic major and much more.
The Great Paxton Excavation of 1923, the great Green Street excavation of 2020, whether anyone will be on the University of Illinois campus this summer, precautions at the UI’s meat sciences lab, how the United Way is bearing up during the pandemic, another closed restaurant and how fire department mutual aid works.
We're celebrating Mother's Day with answers to 20 questions, from historic houses in Urbana to construction in Champaign to the newspapers around the country.
Welcome to May. Tomorrow is Mrs. Mailbag’s birthday and she plans to celebrate with a much-appreciated trip to the golf course.
Roller-coaster roads in Champaign County, the Yards project is still on, election judge pay is on its way, don’t worry about meteorologist Kevin Lighty and scientific proof that Danville is wetter than Champaign-Urbana. Also, a nice corner lot in Champaign is about to go on the market, taxpayers won’t pay for new shingles on a housing authority project and early-morning trash collections.
Plenty of COVID-19-related questions (MTD, UI, coroner, governor, food trucks) as well as horseback riding on the Kickapoo Rail Trail, trains in C-U, fold-up stop signs and much, much more.
Bad news from Springfield, a horse statue in Urbana, a heist in Champaign, a new old grocery store in Mahomet, a debris-filled property in north Champaign, a peaker plant in Tilton, gasoline prices all around the state and lots of COVID-19 questions.
Plenty of coronavirus info plus answers on I-57/I-74 interchange project, a creative piece of art in downtown Urbana, wildlife in Champaign, 2020 Census concerns, a postwar housing development for University of Illinois faculty, handicapped parking concerns, restaurant taxes, bald eagles and our young pal, Marcus Jackson.
Tom's Mailbag: 'Beginning Friday, March 27, traffic exiting from the Orchard Street parking garage at Carle Foundation Hospital will be using the pay booths on Park Street on the north side of the garage nearest to The Forum.'
Costco update, permeable sidewalk in Champaign, University Avenue construction in Urbana, permits for the downtown Urbana townhouse development, controversial fee hikes in Illinois, budgeting to run for circuit judge, protecting tradespeople at the University of Illinois and hefty library fines.
A little bit of everything in this week’s mailbag: cannabis, COVID-19, Cubs, the county executive and campus buildings. Also, a Starbucks for Danville, 5G coverage and the Champaign skyline.
Road construction in Champaign, loss of Cardinals games for DISH Network subscribers, history of round barns, whether the Illinois women’s basketball team might return to Huff, potential airline for Willard Airport, pedestrian improvements outside of Memorial Stadium, more on Champaign’s now-silent weather radio station, interstate highway rest areas, Tuscola outlet mall and a not quite complete walking trail at Carle at the Fields.
The closure of the Indiana Beach amusement park, early voting, former County Treasurer Laurel Prussing’s pensions, jailed Illinois politicians and the chances C-U could regain an International House of Pancakes. Also, Illinois Field, a nearly 120-year-old home in Urbana, a noisy parking lot in Urbana, an interchange in Tuscola and State’s Attorney Julia Rietz’s workload.
Special parking for expectant mothers, Michael Bloomberg’s TV commercial spending, confusion over convicted Chicago Democrats, Mayor Feinen and President Trump, an unusual apartment complex in west Champaign, changes at the Champaign dog park, remnants of Camp Rantoul, a temporary stairway at the former PNC bank in downtown Champaign, the state Rep. Carol Ammons investigation and whether there’s a market for a hotel in Mahomet.