2020 Year in Review

 “Corona” takes a back seat in September

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[January 13, 2021]   September was another good month for Logan County on the whole. Yes, there were a few less than stellar moments but for the most part our community was doing its best to endure what had been forced upon us by circumstances beyond our control. The coronavirus had taken its toll on our businesses, our local events, but it could not take away our spirit of giving and being involved.

For most of us, the answer to being involved came not in the material world, but in the virtual world.

Two such examples came with the raising of an Illinois flag for a national convention and the running of an east coast marathon on the roads of Logan County.

On Saturday, August 29th, Bob Jeckel of Frontier-Mt. Carroll Insurance in Lincoln, with help from the American Legion Honor Guard, raised the Illinois flag at All Veterans Park in Lincoln. The flag-raising was done for a video to be used at a national convention later this month.

Photo by Nila Smith

Bob Jeckel raises the flag for Illinois

Bob Jeckel raises the flag for Illinois - slideshow

On a wet Saturday morning, Abby (Coers) Miller participated in a virtual Boston Marathon, running a twisting route from Clinton to Lincoln to achieve the requisite 26.2 miles.

When she crossed her personal finish line at Precision Movement in Lincoln, this is what was waiting for her.

Miller was delighted by the support shown to her by family and friends. Read more about Abby and her history-making run.

Photo by Nila Smith

Abby (Coers) Miller runs the Boston in Illinois

Mother Nature continued to entertain us and our reader Doug Brooks along with a few others was happy to share what he was finding on his walks through nature, beauty in the small things of life.

Thanks to Doug Brooks for sending in this great close-up shot of a praying mantis.
Here are some interesting facts about this unique and odd-shaped bug. The word mantis is Greek for "prophet," so they are praying prophets. They have excellent vision and are the only insect that can turn its head 180 degrees from side to side. They only eat food that is still living and moving during consumption. They are excellent for pest control consuming beetles, crickets, grasshoppers and spiders. Unfortunately, they will also go after hummingbirds. And, the females consume their mates at the end of the breeding cycle.

There are 2,400 species of these large bugs. They come in various colors and a variety of shapes, though still recognizable as a mantis.

Like a lot of other insects, the mantis is becoming rarer in our landscapes. It appears that Doug may have been out on a country walk when he caught sight of this one.

Photo by Doug Brooks

Reader Doug Brooks submitted these photos, entitling the group "Feeding frenzy on the Autumn Joy Sedum." Whether you see a marvel of nature or bugs on a plant, it is that time of year the insects are out and about enjoying the nectar of the garden.

Photos by Doug Brooks

Karen Hargis grabbed this shot in her back yard. She counted 13 butterflies on this sedum plant. Lesson learned - if you want to attract butterflies and other pollinators into your lawn next year, plant some Autumn Joy Sedum. The delicate lavenderish pink flowers are very pretty and good food for our colorful insects.

Photo Karen Hargis

A brief shower and peek at the sun north of Lincoln produced a rainbow treat on Monday. It does not show in the photo, but the inner bow produced three full spectrum bands of red, orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo and violet and another band also appeared further out, for four bands of ROYGBIV seen at once in the evening sky.

Photo by Jan Youngquist

At the end of August, LDN ran a photo of an eye catching horse and buggy on the front lawn of a home on College Street in Lincoln. We asked for more information about the very large and lovely yard ornament. The owner, David Presswood was happy to oblige. LDN began the month of September sharing his story.

Last Friday, August 28th, LDN featured this same picture in Top Stories. We marveled at how neat the horse and buggy were, and we asked that the owner reach out to us and tell us the story behind it.

Before the day was out, we heard from David Presswood. He is the horse and buggy owner and it stands in his front yard on College Street. When you go past his house, look not only at the buggy but the decor on his porch as there you will find an old cowboy sitting taking a rest, and a large collection of flower planters hanging from antique pulleys.

Presswood tells us that the horse was a surprise gift from his sister Judy Presswood who lives in California. He had said he wanted a horse to put in his front yard to go along with the porch theme.

With such a fabulous horse, Presswood searched for a fantastic buggy and found this one in Spring Bay, just outside Peoria. The buggy is an 1800's doctor's buggy, and it is authentic, not a reproduction. He said that the owner told him the buggy has been in a couple of movies, but couldn't say what the titles were.

"I found the buggy a very nice piece of history and a great addition to my collection and perfect for my yard," concluded Presswood.

Thanks so much, David, for filling in the gaps for us. BTW, he says that he has a lot of visitors to the yard, and people even stop by to have a photo with the horse and buggy. He enjoys having folks enjoy his yard.

Photos by Nila Smith

Another large yard ornament was also caught in the lens and lent itself naturally to one of the August headlines from the Lincoln City Council.

Chickens are now permitted for egg production in the city of Lincoln. However, roosters are prohibited, unless of course, it is one like this fellow. Located in a yard not far from the Lincoln Developmental Center campus, this guy is not "loud," but he is a proud rooster keeping watch over his territory.

Photo by Karen Hargis

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Christian Village was at it again in September, hosting a second drive-thru parade for its residents. This month there were officials present from the corporate offices with proclamations that they were participating in a “Tour of gratitude” for its frontline workers who were making every effort to keep residents safe from the coronavirus.

On Wednesday afternoon, a motor parade for the residents of Christian Village in Lincoln ended with brief speeches from the executive staff at Christian Homes and a group photo in front of some new signage at the village.

The parade included family and friends of residents, driving through the main thoroughfare between the long term care, rehab to home, and congregate buildings. Residents very much enjoyed seeing their loved ones as did the loved ones enjoy shouting out greetings to the residents.

The parade part of the Christian Homes "Thank you tour" included a huge thanks to the village staff who have done a remarkable job keeping residents safe from the coronavirus.

Lincoln Daily News will have additional coverage in the Friday edition.

Photo by Karen Hargis

Christian Homes ‘Tour of Gratitude’ comes to Lincoln
Event kicks off with a parade, ends with speeches and a group photo

Christian Village residents line up to watch a parade - slideshow

Families get into the spirit of the parade - slideshow

Christian Village staff also get into the spirit of the day - slideshow

Parade is extra special for residents - slideshow

Day ends with 'Thanks' to the heroes - slideshow

The community was also showing love and support for one another through its actions as well as through donations to local organizations.

One sad note came from Dr. David Gerlach at Lincoln College. President Gerlach responded quickly and publicly when he learned that his students were being harassed via social media and issued a press release showing support for all of his students.

A local church responded quickly, showing its love for all the students at the college through expressions of love left on campus sidewalks.

Lincoln College students subjected to insensitivity and insults

Earlier this week, members of the Jefferson Street Church in Lincoln took to the sidewalks at Lincoln College. In an effort to counterbalance the negativity that has been reported on social media, the group was sending messages of love, respect, support and encouragement to LC students via chalk art.

Photo by Karen Hargis

Jefferson Street Church spreads the love at Lincoln College - slideshow

On a rainy day in September, there was some light hearted fun going on in the garage at the Lincoln Police Department. While the subject was quite serious, the end result of the day was comical for those who were there to find out what happens when one puts on a pair of special goggles.

On Saturday morning, the Lincoln D.A.R.E program unveiled their latest tools in the quest to encourage area youth to avoid substance abuse. The new Drunk Buster carts and impairment goggles will give youth and adults an understanding of how the senses are altered when impaired.

The purchase of the new equipment was made possible in part by support from Joe Ryan Country Financial in Lincoln. On Saturday, Ryan took a seat on the cart with Lincoln Fire Chief Bob Dunovsky and Lincoln D.A.R.E. Officer Christy Fruge' stepping in for a photo.

Photo by Nila Smith

Local generosity aids Lincoln D.A.R.E. in new tools for the fight on substance abuse

Lincoln D.A.R.E. shows off new Drunk Buster carts - slideshow

Another faction of law enforcement, the Lincoln Correctional Center was also busy in September delivering pumpkins to local school children.

On Friday, Food Service Director Christian Tanner and Lt. Jeff Walsh of Lincoln Correction Center made a special delivery to kindergarten students in Lincoln. They distributed nearly 400 small pumpkins grown by the inmates to the children as an early Halloween gift.

Accepting the pumpkins on behalf of all Central Kindergarteners were three members of Ms. Merritt's class. Pictured front from the left: Lt. Walsh, Henry, and Tanner. In the next step up is Elijah and Principal Bogdanic. On the top step is the classroom's other Henry along with teacher Ms. Merritt.

Photo by Nila Smith

Lincoln Correctional sends fall greetings to area kindergarteners via a load of pumpkins

A new economic development project for Mount Pulaski and new business in Lincoln were introduced to the community in September.

Mount Pulaski Daycare Steering Committee seeks community input

The community is invited to join Troy and Jantina Lowe for a Grand Opening Open House at the Dugan Center in Lincoln on Monday, September 21st from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. The Dugan Center is located at 1500 North McLean Street, in the former Little Lambs Daycare Center.

The Lowes are excited to share the improvements they have made at the center and show off what they have to offer. They are particularly pleased to introduce a new cowork space, recently remodeled and equipped to make it a comfortable and productive location for those who typically work on the road or from home.

Photo by Nila Smith

Dugan Center to host Grand Opening Open House on September 21st

In other good news

Around the county there were other good things going on that had a positive impact on many.

Among those was news from Hartsburg-Emden School, Atlanta Ag 4-H and Heartland College.

Hartem teacher Nichole Folkman wins Unsung Heroes award

Atlanta Ag 4-H supports HOOAH Deer Hunt for Heroes

Regions Bank donation supports students and programs for Heartland Truck Driver Training

A local institution celebrated its 25th anniversary and the community learned that St. Clara’s Rehab and Senior Care would have a role in the research for a coronavirus vaccine by Eli Lilly.

They don’t look a day over 25, but the Lincoln NWS Office is just that

St. Clara’s Rehab & Senior Care hosts Eli Lilly Mobile Response Unit at start of phase 3 drug trial for COVID-19 prevention

In city news, the Lincoln City Council looked at the employee health plans and heard from two firms hoping to get the business.

Part one: Whiteman and Schaub seek to represent the city employee health insurance

Part two: Lincoln aldermen confused and irritated by actions of its insurance committee

At the end of the month, residents around the community were already looking forward to October with enthusiasm for one of our favorite observances -Halloween.

Gary and Cindy Snyder were among those who were buy getting ready for the season by decorating their lawn with some of our most feared (and beloved) villains from Halloween horror movies.

Gary and Cindy Snyder stand with Jason from "Friday the 13th" in their front yard on North Kickapoo Street in Lincoln. The two love Halloween and enjoy setting up an elaborate display for the folks who drive by their home next door to Ace Hardware.

Photo by Karen Hargis

Halloween lawn décor a passion for Gary and Cindy Snyder - Album

In September, the coronavirus took a back seat locally to many other events and activities. But numbers in the county were on the rise. The end of August there were 254 year-to-date confirmed cases in Logan County. That number increased to 469 by the end of September. The winds of change were brewing up a storm that would come in October and impact us all again.

[Nila Smith]

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