McLean County News Briefs

Chronicle Media

Hike Haven is on Lake Drive in Forrest Park in Bloomington. The city is reviewing final details of a 15-year parks and recreation master plan. (Photo courtesy of city of Bloomington)

McLean County

Mental health focus of next WGLT Community event        

WGLT-FM, 89.1, will convene a panel of experts to discuss urgent mental health needs for Bloomington-Normal youth at an upcoming event.

The radio station will host its next installment of its Community Conversations series from 6 to 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 12, at ISU’s Alumni Center, 1101 N. Main St.

Plans call for the panel to consist of parents, policymakers and other persons intricately involved in the issue. Station management are accepting questions before the event. They can be submitted online at

Scholar to lead Illinois Weslyan library this spring          

Scott Walter has been named head librarian at Illinois Wesleyan University and will assume his appointment in May. Walter is succeeding Karen Schmidt, who is set to retire this spring after 12 years of employment at IWU.

Walter’s resume includes stints as a scholar and educator. “Libraries across the country are, and have been, undergoing tremendous change,” said Mark Brodl, provost and dean of faculty, in a statement. “Scott’s accomplishments prior to coming to Illinois Wesleyan demonstrate that he will bring strong talent to the role.”

ISU to host guest lecture on life on migrant trail

Jason De Leon, scholar and author, will deliver a talk, “The Land of Open Graves: Necroviolence and the Politics of Migrant Death in the Arizona Desert,” at 7 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 20.

The event will be held in the Circus Room of the Bone Student Center at Illinois State University, 100 N. University St., Normal, and is free and open to the public. De Leon is a professor of anthropology at the University of Michigan.

He also directs the undocumented migrant project, which is a long-term study of clandestine border crossing.    


Police investigating pair of armed robberies

Bloomington Police are investigating two armed robberies that are potentially related to one another. Both incidents occurred Monday, Jan. 28.

According to police, the first incident occurred at 11:15 a.m. at Check Into Cash, 2303 E. Washington St. According to BPD officials, the suspect entered the store, armed with a gun, and fled on foot with an undisclosed amount of cash.

The second incident was reported in the 1700 block of Clearwater Avenue about 9:30 p.m. In this incident, the suspect reportedly pointed a gun at two adult victims and demanded cash and property. He fled with an undisclosed amount of cash and other valuables.

In both incidents, the suspect was described as a black man, standing about 5 feet, 8 inches tall. In the evening incident, the suspect also was reported as having a facemask and wearing dark clothes. Police are asking anyone with information to contact Detective Jared Bierbaum at 309-434-2807 or   

City Council moves forward on intersection redesign

The west side intersection of Washington Street and Euclid Avenue is set for a revamp, following a decision from the Bloomington City Council on Monday, Jan. 28.

The intersection has been cited by city officials as one of the most crash-prone spots in the community.

As a first step in the process, the city is contracting with a firm — Peoria-based Hanson Professional Services Inc. — to prepare a design study for the site.

Hanson’s services are expected to cost the city $25,800.   

Green space, trails highlight park/rec master plan           

Bloomington city officials have put the finishing touches on a 15-year master plan that lays the groundwork for future decision-making for current and future parks and recreation centers. The City Council adopted the plan at its meeting Monday, Jan. 28.

Future amenities, as outlined in the plan, touch on hiking opportunities, carving out dog parks and creating nature trails.  

Florida man charged with assaulting minor in 2008

A 43-year-old man currently living in St. Petersburg, Fla., has been charged with assaulting a Bloomington girl over a five-year span of time, beginning in 2008. According to a criminal complaint, Lamont Barclay, the man charged, engaged in criminal sex assault and exploitation of the girl. According to officials, the victim recently revealed her accusations. Barclay last week was jailed. His bail has been set at $100,035.  

Bike-sharing company Zagster is proposing to the Town of Normal a similar sharing plan for electric scooters. (Photo courtesy of Zagster)


Town could set a first in Illinois with scooters     

The town of Normal could hold the distinction of being the first Illinois community to pass an ordinance allowing electric scooters.

Bike-sharing company Zagster recently approached town officials about the scooter plan.

Under the proposal, Zagster would bring a fleet of 150 scooters to the community at no direct cost to the municipality. Users would pay an upfront fee of $1 to rent a scooter, followed by 15 cents per each minute of use.

The Town Council is set to discuss and possibly act on Zagster’s proposal at a meeting Monday, Feb. 18.



–McLean County News Briefs–