McLean County News Briefs

Chronicle Media

Special events honoring the state’s bicentennial are planned for the annual Lincoln Festival on Route 66, July 20-22, in Bloomington. The McLean County Museum of History is host. (Photos courtesy of Lincoln Festival)

McLean County

15 candidates emerge in circuit court race      

Fifteen candidates are throwing their hats into the ring for an open associate judge position in the Eleventh Judicial Circuit, which encompasses McLean, Ford, Livingston, Logan and Woodford counties. Applicants who have filed the necessary paperwork include Kristin Alferink, Adrian Barr, Scott Black, Sarah Duffy, Joseph Foley, Brian Gabor, Matthew Koetters, Scott Kording, David Koth, Andrew Lankton, Ronald Lewis, Todd Miller, Jennifer Patton, Craig Queen and Kevin Sanborn.

The selected appointee, to be named next month, will replace William Yoder, who has been appointed to replace Chief Judge Kevin Fitzgerald. He retired Friday, July 6.    

State’s bicentennial part of this year’s Lincoln Festival      

Illinois’ bicentennial will be a focal point of this year’s Lincoln’s Festival on Route 66 festivities, organizers with the McLean County Museum of History announced recently.

Several special events paying special homage to the 200-year milestone are planned for the upcoming annual event, which is taking place from Friday, July 20 to Sunday, July 22, in various locales.

One of the bicentennial-themed events, “Encounters with Lincoln’s World,” will be held from 5 to 8 p.m. Friday and feature dramatized stories of hometown heroes. For a full itinerary of this year’s festivities, visit

Local organization celebrates 100th anniversary

The McLean County Association for Home and Community Education, is celebrating its centennial anniversary this year.

Since its founding in 1918, the association has gone through several iterations, but has been steadfast in portraying the important role women play in the community.

The local McLean County group initially was known as the McLean County Home Improvement Association before donning the name the Home Bureau and, later, the Homemakers Extension Association. The organization adopted its current name in 2001. For information on the association, visit  


Police investigating recent ‘shots fired’ calls      

Bloomington Police are investigating a recent report of multiple shots being fired in the 800 block of West Washington Street.

According to a department news release, officers responded to the scene about 5:55 p.m. Sunday, July 1, after fielding multiple reports of gunshot sounds.

One eyewitness reported the sight of a man holding a handgun running into a vehicle, which fled the scene at a high rate of speed.

Police officials said no evidence was collected amid the on-scene investigation. At press deadline, no arrests were made in connection with the incident, and no injuries have been reported.

Local GOP supports abolishing Election Commission      

The McLean County Republican Party is following in the footsteps of another local political group and calling for an end to the Bloomington Election Commission.

Local organizers within the GOP Party announced they would join the McLean County Libertarian Party and work to gather 1,000 signatures — the number needed under state law — and have a question placed on the November ballot.

Bloomington has long operated autonomously from the rest of the county in having its own commission oversee election-related matters.

The McLean County clerk handles the function for all other municipalities, including Normal. Proponents of the abolition cite cost savings as a reason for the effort.

City seeks input on possible train horn quiet zone      

Bloomington’s public works department will host a diagnostic review next month and allow residents, business owners and various community groups to weigh in on the proposed implementation of a quiet zone, which could include multiple railroad crossings, including those at Miller and Washington streets and Six Points Road.

After gathering feedback, DPW staffers plan to take the information to officials in McLean County government, the U.S. Department of Transportation, Illinois Department of Transportation, Federal Railroad Administration and Illinois Commerce Commission.

For information on the effort, visit Further details on when and where the meetings will be held is forthcoming.   


Playground destroyed by fire

A playground at Calvary Christian Academy, 1017 N. School St., was destroyed by a fire about 4 p.m. Tuesday, July 3, according to the Normal Fire Department. Crews responded to the scene shortly after fielding reports of the incident.

The fire reportedly started after two children were playing with matches. No injuries were reported.

Council inks multifamily recycling ordinance

After months of review, an ordinance requiring multifamily residences offer recycling service is officially on Normal’s books. The Town Council adopted the ordinance at a meeting Monday, July 2.

The ordinance requires property managers, landlords and other persons overseeing properties not currently served by the municipal contractor to have in place a plan for recycling service.

The goal, according to Normal officials, is to provide equal recycling opportunities for all residential property classes.


–McLean County News Briefs–