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Archive for March 1st, 2012

Rock Star Winner Is Announced

Posted by wlpo on March 1, 2012

Brittany Alvey’s pipes have made her a thousand dollars richer.

The woman from Ottawa was named the winner of 99.3 WAJK and 96.5 the Wolf’s Rock Star competition.  Alvey bested Kayla Magnafici and Hannah Marincic of Oglesby and Martha Smid of La Salle.

The 10th annual event was at Starved Rock Lodge and was also sponsored by Euclid Beverage.

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Fire Guts Princeton Landscaping Building

Posted by wlpo on March 1, 2012

A fire has done major damage to an area landscaping company.

Princeton firefighters were called west of town to Elite Landscape on 1525 North Avenue. When they arrived around five o’clock last evening, they saw a large barn type building on fire.  Mutual aid was requested and nearly 30 firefighters put out the blaze in a little over an hour.

Firefighters think it started in the loft area.  Fire, water and heat damage is all over the building. No one was inside at the time of the fire.

Princeton Fire Chief John Petrakis thinks the fire was accidental.

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Couple donates $100,000 to IVCC building project

Posted by wlpo on March 1, 2012

The campus at Illinois Valley Community College looks more like a construction site each day.  Crews are making way for the Peter Miller Community Technology Center.  The building will have classrooms and counseling offices.

LPO Junior College graduates William and Dian Taylor are contributing $100,000 to the building.  For their donation, the college will name counseling and admissions area “The William and Dian Taylor Student Development Commons.”

The $21 million building is expected to be completed in late 2013.

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More Sand Mine Talk In La Salle County

Posted by wlpo on March 1, 2012

There could be more public hearings for proposed sand mines in La Salle County.

The La Salle County Development Committee agreed to have the full county board decide whether there are public hearings about Mississippi Sand and Illinois Sand’s reclamation plans.  Mississippi Sand says they’ll offer the site near Starved Rock to the county and are willing to fill it with water.  Illinois Sand hasn’t detailed what their reclamation plan is along the Osage curves.

Environmental Services Director Mike Harsted says a hearing would likely be run by the Illinois Department of Natural Resources and would only be about reclamation.  He’s trying to get the point across to sand mine opponents that the meeting wouldn’t be an open forum like the lengthy zoning hearings were in January.

County Board Member Rick Scott remains critical of Mississippi Sand’s project.  He voted against giving Mississippi Sand a variance for the floodplain ordinance today and says they’re “getting the easy way out” by filling a pit with water instead of filling it back in with soil.

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Westclox arson trial scheduled to begin Monday

Posted by wlpo on March 1, 2012

Two months ago smoke was pouring from the old Westclox factory in Peru.  Thursday was the last pretrial hearing for one of the teens accused of starting it.

17 year old Steven Gallacher of La Salle has been in the La Salle County Jail since he and a 15 year were arrested only hours after the fire. He’ll go on trial next week for felony aggravated arson.  Unlike the 15 year old, he hasn’t taken a plea deal.

Jury selection is scheduled for Monday.  Meanwhile, the younger boy will learn his punishment Tuesday in juvenile court.  He could be ordered to live in a juvenile prison until he’s 21 years old.

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Area disaster volunteers placed on standby

Posted by wlpo on March 1, 2012

The photos and video you are watching of the southern Illinois town that was nailed by a tornado aren’t unfamiliar to disaster volunteers in the Illinois Valley.

Sara Stasik, Executive Director of the Illinois Valley Chapter of the Red Cross says local volunteers are on standby incase they are needed in Harrisburg.

Six people were killed and at least 100 were injured when the tornado hit early Wednesday morning.  Gov. Pat Quinn has declared it a disaster area.

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Man found dead at Matthiessen State Park

Posted by wlpo on March 1, 2012

A pickup truck parked at Matthiessen State Park got the attention of a conservation police officer, but apparently too late.  The officer found the body of a man inside Wednesday afternoon.

Investigators believe 53 year old Dale Belinski of Newark died after shooting himself.  An autopsy was being performed Thursday.

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Thousand Dollars On The Line Tonight With Rock Star Finals

Posted by wlpo on March 1, 2012

A thousand dollars is on the line tonight at Starved Rock Lodge.

WAJK and 96.5 the Wolf’s Rock Star Competition Finals start tonight at 7:30.  One woman will take home the money with it being the first time there are no men in the finals of the 10th annual singing competition.

Finalists are Brittney Alvey of Ottawa, Martha Smid of La Salle, and Kayla Magnafici and Hannah Marincic both of Oglesby.  They will perform two songs of their choice tonight along with a short A Capella song.

Rock Star is also sponsored by Starved Rock Lodge and Euclid Beverage.

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February Leaves With Gusty Winds

Posted by wlpo on March 1, 2012

Leap Day definitely was a memorable weather day.

While tornadoes damaged homes and took lives in southern Illinois, wind gusts were wreaking far less havoc in northern Illinois. The listening area was under a wind advisory for much of the day.

The highest local wind gust according to the National Weather Service was in Utica at 55 miles per hour. A 49 per hour wind gust was measured in Peru while a gust reached 45 miles per hour in Ottawa and 41 miles per hour in Sublette.

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Wind Shuts Down Stretch Of Route 6

Posted by wlpo on March 1, 2012

A busy stretch of road in Ottawa was closed for a long time because of the wind.

Gusty winds yesterday knocked down a wooden electrical pole on East Norris Drive next to Monte’s Riverside Inn.  Traffic on both sides of the road was rerouted well into the evening.

Despite it being a power pole, Ameren says no one lost power.

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