Sunday, June 3, Local News

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Published on June 3 2012 6:02 am
Last Updated on July 14 2013 12:07 pm
Written by Greg Sapp

The St. Anthony Bulldogs won their first-ever state baseball championship Saturday with a 6-1 victory over the Tuscola Warriors.  The game was heard on 979XFM and www.979xfm.com.

A Welcome Home for the Bulldogs is set for 1pm today in the Multi-Purpose Room at St. Anthony High School.  We'll be recording the ceremony and will post it online at www.kjcountry.com and www.979xfm.com.  More on the Bulldogs' championship victory coming up shortly in our check of sports.

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The Mid America Motorworks Funfest for VW wraps up a three-day run today on the corporate grounds along North US 45.

You can view the 2011 Bonneville Salt Flats World Record Holder, a new low-speed slalom race from 1 to 3pm, and a special parking area dedicated to Herbies like the one featured in the movie, "The Love Bug".

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Some Illinois prisoners could be coming home early under a new proposal sent to Governor Quinn.  In an effort to cut down on overcrowding, lawmakers have decided that inmates with good behavior could be eligible for early release.  A similar program was ended several years back because some inmates were getting out after serving very short, one day or one week sentences.  The new program will only apply to non-violent inmates locked up for petty crimes.

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Parents that fail to report their child missing within 24 hours could face tougher penalties and fines.  Lawmakers sent "Caylee's Law" to the governor, which makes it a Class 4 felony for parents who neglect to report children missing within the allotted time.  That means the parent could face up to three years behind bars and pay a fine up to $25,000.  Children under two years old would have to be reported missing within an hour of the disappearances.

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On this day after the annual Sheriff's Posse Ride, police are reminding motorists to keep a watchful eye for motorcycles this riding season.  Illinois State Police District 12 Commander Morrie Fraser said the current problem areas for fatal crashes in the district are rural roads and state highways.  He said as the temperatures increase, so will the number of motorcycles on roadways.  Fraser said, "With the increase of motorcycle and scooter traffic, it becomes imperative for all motorists to limit distractions, pay attention, and safely share the road."  He is also encouraging motorcycle riders to possess the proper license classification and get the proper training to operate a motorcycle.  Also make sure all lights and equipment are operating properly on a cycle, and wear bright or reflective clothing.  Fraser also encourages riders of motorycles and scooters to wear helmets.

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First Presbyterian Church in Effingham will begin Sky Vacation Bible School today.  The VBS will continue through Thursday from 5:45pm to 8:15pm.  A light supper will be served Monday through Thursday at 5:15pm.  For more information, phone the church at 342-6272.

A community VBS hosted by Edgewood Christian Church, Full Gospel Church, Mason Christian Church and Harvest United Methodist Church will begin today and will run through Friday from 6 to 8pm.  The VBS will be held at Edgewood Christian Church on Hickory Street in Edgewood.  Each day will feature crafts, lessons, games, music and dinner.  Transportation will be provided.  Phone 238-9080 to schedule a pick-up time.  The theme is "Babylon: Daniel's Courage in Captivity".

St. Paul at Wheeler, St. John at Dieterich and Grace at Dieterich Lutheran Churches invite you to attend an Amazing Desert Journey Vacation Bible School.  You can meet friends, explore Bible stories, take Bible challengs, make crafts, eat snacks, play games and sing.  Registration is open for all ages 3 to 12.  The VBS will run from 6pm to 8:30pm from tonight through Friday, and will be held at St. Paul Lutheran Church, three miles north of Dieterich on North 2300th Street.  A closing program will take place at 7pm on Friday, June 8.

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You can give the Gift of Life today at Holy Cross Catholic Church at Wendelin.  A Red Cross blood drive will be held from 8am to noon in the Parish Hall.  All donors must present a photo ID. 

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The Strasburg Lions Club is sponsoring a chicken fry today with serving starting at 4pm at the Strasburg City Park in the south pavilion.  The menu includes fried chicken, potato salad, cole slaw, baked beans, chips, bread and butter, lemonade and tea.  All proceeds go to the community in some way, including upkeep of the ball field, sponsoring the girl's softball teams, and scholarships for two seniors each year among others.  There will be an antique tractor parade at the park during the meal time.

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An eighth person has died from injuries suffered in the tornado that ripped through Harrisburg on February 29.  74-year-old Blaine Mauney died Thursday.  The Saline County Coroner's Office says the elderly woman suffered major injuries in the twister.  She's been in several hospitals for treatment.

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The planet Venus will provide Illinois skywatchers with a show next week, providing the skies are clear.  It's officially dubbed Venus Transit Day with our neighboring planet marching across the face of the sun.  NASA said the last time this occurred was in 2004.  The next time the six-hour journey will be seen from Earth will be in the year 2117.

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Illinois Secretary of State Jesse White's office is giving pink slips to 90 employees.  The layoffs are being blamed on cuts contained in the newly-passed state budget.  The cuts will take effect July 1, the start of the state's new fiscal year.  Spokesman David Druker said the layoffs will affect people statewide and at all levels in the office.

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Governor Pat Quinn is not thrilled with a major gambling expansion plan passed by the General Assembly.  He's hinting he may not sign the bill.  Quinn said he still objects to the lack of measures such as a ban on campaign contributions from gambling interests.  The plan would add slot machines at horse tracks and casinos in five cities.

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A measure to boost the cost of license plates to help fund state parks failed in the Illinois Senate.  The $2/year incrase was pushed through the House, but lacked three votes in the Senate for passage.  The measure could be brought up again later this year.  Opponents complain there have been too many tax and fee hikes in recent years.