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Archive for July 10th, 2013

Canyons to reopen at Starved Rock State Park

Posted by wlpo on July 10, 2013

          The Illinois River has been below flood stage for weeks but a couple of attractions at Starved Rock State Park are just now reopening. 

Ottawa-Kaskaskia Canyon and Council Overhand will reopen as of Thursday.  The areas and many other trails were closed after heavy rain and flooding in April.

Those canyons are the last places to reopen.


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Cullerton calls lawmaker pay cut ‘grandstanding’

Posted by wlpo on July 10, 2013

     CHICAGO (AP) – Senate President John Cullerton says Gov. Pat Quinn was “political grandstanding” when he cut legislator pay. Cullerton says Quinn’s move undermines the work of a committee trying to solve the pension crisis.

      Cullerton released a statement Wednesday saying “responsible leaders know that unworkable demands will only delay progress.”

      The Chicago Democrat says the bipartisan legislative panel will keep working to reach a compromise on Illinois’ $97 billion pension problem.

      Quinn cut $13.8 million for legislators’ paychecks from a budget bill. It was the “consequence” Quinn warned was coming after the Legislature missed a Tuesday deadline he set for a pension deal.

      Quinn says he’s tried everything to get lawmakers to address the pension problem and that the only way to get their attention is to hit them in the wallets.

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Beer Tasting will raise money for local fire departments

Posted by wlpo on July 10, 2013

If your favorite beer has started to taste like water, no worries, your new favorite brew could be at a summer beer tasting that’s benefiting the Utica, Oglesby and Lostant fire departments.

Each fire department knows how to put the money to good use. Todd Misner of the Oglesby Fire Department says they would like to use the money to buy new equipment for rescuing people involved in car crashes.

Dave Mertes of the Lostant Fire Department says they would also like to buy new equipment. The Utica Fire Protection District needs to raise $150,000 for a new ambulance.

The tasting is Friday from 6-8:30pm at Senica’s Oak Ridge and is sponsored by Rudy’s Liquor in La Salle. Tickets are $20 in advance and $25 at the door and that includes the cost of the samples and food.  Tickets are on sale at Rudy’s and through the participating fire departments.

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Pam Roth Resigning From State House

Posted by wlpo on July 10, 2013

People in Marseilles and Seneca will soon need a new state representative.

Republican Pam Roth of Morris announced today that she is resigning from the state house by the end of the summer.  Roth says her husband has accepted a job in Texas and with that distance and her demands in Springfield, it would leave her two boys without either parent for too long.

Roth was appointed to the 75th District seat in 2011 after Sue Rezin moved over to the senate to replace Gary Dahl.  Roth then won re-election in 2012 by beating Democrat Jeremy Ly.

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Fair Season Underway In The Valley

Posted by wlpo on July 10, 2013

Fair season officially gets into high gear today with the openings of the La Salle County and Marshall-Putnam Fairs.

At the La Salle County 4-H in south Ottawa, the main attraction this evening is a “Big Hat Championship Rodeo” starting at 7.  Tickets are 10 dollars for people 10 years old and older.

In Henry at the Marshall-Putnam Fair today there is an afternoon cookie stacking contest, a kick-off dinner and the Little Miss, Junior Miss and Miss Marshall-Putnam Fair pageants.

There’s no charge to get into the Marshall-Putnam Fair.

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Red Cross Needs Your Blood

Posted by wlpo on July 10, 2013

Have you donated blood recently?  The American Red Cross says there is an emergency need for donors.

Red Cross officials say they need to boost the blood supply following the July 4th holiday.  They’ve issued an “emergency appeal” for all types of blood as well as platelet donors.

In La Salle County, there’s a blood drive tomorrow in Ottawa starting at 1 inside the First Baptist Church.  In Bureau County there’s a blood drive tomorrow starting at 11:30 at First United Methodist Church in Princeton.

Keep in mind the Red Cross office in Peru also has weekly blood drives.

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Mendota Gearing Up For Relay For Life

Posted by wlpo on July 10, 2013

If you’re wondering why Mendota is a little more purple than usual this week it’s for a good cause.

Organizers with the Upper Illinois Valley Relay for Life are asking businesses to “paint the town purple” this week ahead of this weekend’s relay at Lake Mendota.  The relay starts at 6.

Organizers so far say there are around 60 teams signed up who have raised over 106 thousand dollars.  The fundraising goal for the Upper Illinois Valley Relay is 150 thousand dollars.

Money raised goes to the American Cancer Society.

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Benefit For Lostant Family Displaced By A Fire

Posted by wlpo on July 10, 2013

There’s a benefit tonight in Ottawa to help a family displaced by fire in Lostant.

Festivities Unlimited is hosting a Quarter Auction starting at 6:30.  Proceeds from tonight’s auction will go to the family of Gage and Liz Kammer of Lostant.  The couple and their three children lost their home to a fire in early-May.

Doors open for tonight’s auction at 5:30.

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