News

oldtimerdog / Flickr via Creative Commons

The 26th Annual  Champagne British Car Festival is highlighting the DeLorean -- the car that was transformed into a time machine in Back to the Future.

Laura Kennedy / WGLT

Forty years ago this week, the lines began to form around the block for Star Wars—a film that went on to explode not just box office records, but make a profound impact on culture.

Google Images

Throw some particles at an atom and what do you get? That's what Dr. Allison Harris wants to know.

Jack Pearce / Flickr via Creative Commons

Sometimes you just want to plant a huckleberry bush in your yard. And sometimes it's just a pain trying to actually find a huckleberry bush. Finding native plants can be a challenge.

Judith Valente / GLT News

Walking along Shady Hollow Trail at Comlara Park, Sherrie Snyder spots a small flowering plant in the underbrush that contains a series of delicate deep purple blossoms. She stoops to snap a photograph of it on her cell phone.

"I'm going take a picture of this little guy, the dwarf larkspur," she says.

It's all part of a citizen-science project called Flora of Comlara Park. She and other volunteers—you might call them plant Sherlocks—observe and photograph the current plant life so that botanists can compare the plants growing today with those that grew a hundred years ago in central Illinois. 

Bloomington Police Department

Bloomington police have made an arrest in the murder case of a Peoria woman in a motel on Brock Drive.

Officers had previously labeled the death of 27-year old Shannon Hastings suspicious.

Judith Valente / WGLT

Normal Mayoral Candidate Marc Tiritilli said he is conceding the contest to Mayor Chris Koos.

NCHS teacher Patrick Lawler

A group of Normal Community High School students has tried their hands at breaking the budget deadlock.

A group led by Social Studies teacher Patrick Lawler drove to Springfield to meet with General Assembly members.

McLean County Government

The Corporation for Supportive Housing is giving McLean County a $200,000 grant. The money will help analyze data from housing, homeless, healthcare and law enforcement agencies to help identify super-users of the system so they can be better treated and diverted from jail or prison.

CSH Program Manager John Fallon recently spoke with GLT about the importance of establishing supportive housing and delivering services in that space.

Ralph Weisheit

Editors note: This is the first of a series of interviews with newly elected council members in Bloomington and Normal. 

There are a "ton of details to work out," but a Bloomington Alderman is standing by campaign statements about a shared sales tax agreement between Bloomington and Normal. 

MVC

The Missouri Valley Conference President's Council has ratified the membership of Valparaiso University. All Valparaiso's sponsored sports will begin conference play in the fall of 2017.

That does not include football in which Valparaiso plays in the Pioneer League.

Bruce Emmerling / Creative Commons

Recent political rhetoric aside, the majority of immigrants living in the US. come here legally, and each has a compelling story to tell. Those are among the messages members of Bloomington-Normal's immigrant communities hope to convey at a conversation Thursday evening at Bloomington Public Library.

East Indian, Mexican, Caribbean and Latin American immigrants will share their personal stories.

Public Domain / Google Images

Instead of letting old plastic shopping bags clog our landfill or flutter around on the whims of the wind, one local group is upcycling them to help folks in need.

Destihl

Destihl Brewery has cut the ribbon on its new  $14 million production facility in north Normal.

The grand opening Saturday at the brewery north of Menards comes at a time craft brewing growth has begun to slow in the U.S. But, Giotto Troia of Destihl said his company's position remains enviable.

Sgt. Pepper Turns 50

May 24, 2017
Jon Norton / WGLT

North Street Records owner Jeff Wilson paused to contemplate the 50 year anniversary of The Beatles "Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band" album.

"I can't believe all Beatles records are starting to be 50 years old," said Wilson sitting next to the turntable behind the counter in his store. "I guess it's like the world's classical music, especially Sgt. Pepper because it's so iconic."

Flowers outline left side of the exterior front of the Bloomington Center for the Perfoming Arts Building
Photo courtesy of Facebook

The man who has spent the past month learning about past management of the Bloomington Center for the Performing Arts says the 1,200 seat theater and basement-level meeting space sits empty far too often.

"I get no pleasure out of an auditorium of 1,200 sitting there empty and knowing that 1,200 could have something in it and that 'something' could be producing revenue for the city," said Carl St. Clair, a former VenuWorks executive who was lured out of retirement with a four-month, $30,000 contract to serve as interim director of the BCPA.

Alan Cleaver / Flickr

A 33-year old Brimfield man shot himself Tuesday afternoon on I-74 near Carlock. McLean County Coroner Kathleen Davis said Paul S. Smith died of a penetrating contact gunshot wound of the head.

The incident remains under investigation by the McLean County Coroner's office and State Police.

Google Images

Once the excitement of adopting a new pet settles down, you have a big decision ahead of you:  what to name your new friend.

Staff / WGLT

Bloomington Police are investigating a suspicious death of a woman at a motel.

According to a news release, Bloomington Police and Bloomington Fire Rescue responded to a motel room in the 400 block of Brock Drive for an unresponsive person Sunday afternoon at about 12:26.

Illinois State University

State Farm Insurance is giving Illinois State University $3 million to grow the cybersecurity program. The money will create an endowed professorship in the School of Information Technology.
     
School of Information Technology Assistant Director Glen Sagers said ISU is poised to take advantage of one of the hottest areas in workforce growth.

Charlie Schlenker / WGLT

Developers of the Grove subdivision and other community stakeholders are pushing back against the idea the City of Bloomington should not oversize a sewer line for an undeveloped area north of the Grove.

Opposition to the $300,000 project stems from a desire to return to compact development.

Bloomington Police

Bloomington Police have arrested four people in connection with alleged prostitution in the 800 Block of I-A-A Drive.

Even veteran coaches can get nervous when jumping into a new endeavor. Adding to the apprehension for Illinois Wesleyan women’s basketball coach Mia Smith is jumping midstream into an at-large representative for selecting athletes and coaches for the national USA Basketball committee. She had no idea she was even being considered. 

WGLT

Longtime WGLT Morning Edition Host Jim Browne, 65, passed away Saturday morning around 6 a.m. in hospice at Advocate BroMenn. He died after a lengthy illness.

Browne had a 45 year career in broadcasting at several radio stations including WGLT and WJBC in Bloomington Normal.

Cogs and Corsets

Downtown Bloomington is set to go steampunk with Cogs and Corsets: A Steampunk Happening, June 2 - 4.

Empty field
Staff / WGLT

A potential multi-sports complex on Bloomington-Normal's west side could top $50 million in public-private investment.

In an interview  for GLT's Sound Ideas, Katie Kim of the Kim Group, a developer working with landowner Dave Stark on a multi-use sports complex in Bloomington-Normal, said she continues to meet with stakeholders.

Bloomington Police Department

Bloomington police said they want to look at a next generation body camera product because the first one under review doesn't have enough battery life.

Cameras are supposed to have eight hours of recording time. But, some batteries are lasting only three hours. Chief Brendan Heffner said the law is ambiguous because it's not clear whether ten hours refers to recording capacity or battery life.

Sergeant Clayton Arnold is overseeing the pilot project of 12 officers using body cams. Sergeant Arnold said there are procedural hurdles to clear as well, such as deciding how much time to allocate for report writing with access to body camera footage.

Bloomington Police Department

Bloomington Police said they have arrested the man they believe is responsible for a shooting on Main Street last weekend.

The department said its Vice, Street Crime, K-9, Patrol, and Criminal Investigation units combined in a lengthy foot chase to catch 28-year old Fredd (correct spelling) Mitchell.

The jumping worm and the gypsy moth are two pests you need to keep an eye out for -- they're bad news for plants and gardeners.

Terrion Williamson

South side Peoria native and Manual High School alum Terrion Williamson returns to her hometown to discusses her first book. Williamson will share her thoughts on "Scandalize My Name: Black Feminist Practice and the Making of Black Social Life" at the Peoria Public Library - Lincoln Branch at 3:00 p.m on May 21. 

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