Peoria County news briefs

Jo Lakota, a Native-American storyteller will be at the PlayHouse Children’s Museum July 28. (Photo courtesy of Peoria Park District)


Levee District the place for annual Kids’ Day

The 13th Annual Crittenton Centers Kids’ Day will be held from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Saturday, July 27 at The Levee District in East Peoria.

Start the day at 9 a.m. with the 100 Meter Kids’ Dash. For the rest of the day enjoy inflatables, cotton candy, face painting, safety vehicles, popcorn, bike activities, snow cones, bounce houses, live stage performances, mini-golf and more at the Family Fun Day.

Crittenton Centers has been serving Peoria and all of central Illinois since 1892. Originally conceived as a maternity home for unwed mothers, the agency has evolved into a multi-service, multi-million dollar not-for-profit (501c3) child welfare organization.

Currently, the organization’s three core services include the Crisis Nursery (emergency and respite care for infants and children ages birth to 6 years), the Child Development Center (preschool and daycare for infants and children ages 6 weeks to 6 years) and Educational and Support Services. Crittenton Centers’ mission is to protect and nurture children and families.

For more information about the day go to 


Celebrate Peoria: Tell Me a Story

Everyone loves a good story and there are so many ways to tell them across cultures and religions.

Join in at the Peoria PlayHouse Children’s Museum from noon to 3 p.m. on Sunday, July 28 to enjoy stories across cultures including Native American coyote stories with Jo Lakota, Jewish storytelling with Fran Moss, tales in a Bedouin tent, and more.

Children can creatively explore storytelling by using their imagination to make puppets in our art room.

Celebrate Peoria is an event series that celebrates the cultural and religious diversity of Peoria and Central Illinois. Activities are free with museum admission or membership.


 Health Needs Assessment available for comment

The Tri-County Community Health Needs Assessment (CHNA) is a collaborative undertaking to highlight the health needs and well-being of residents in the Tri-County region, Peoria, Tazewell and Woodford counties.

Several themes are prevalent in this assessment, the demographic composition of the Tri-County region, the predictors for and prevalence of diseases, leading causes of mortality, accessibility to health services and healthy behaviors.

Results from the 2019 study will be used for strategic decision making purposes as they directly relate to the health needs of the community.

The 2019 CHNA summary and report is available for public review and comments. Go to

Illinois Central College, Peoria Campus will hold a Highway Construction Careers Training Program information session Monday, July 29 at Hickory Hall. (Photo courtesy of IDOT)

ICC holds program on highway construction careers

Illinois Central College, Peoria Campus will hold a Highway Construction Careers Training informational program at 9 a.m. on Monday, July 29 at  Hickory Hall.

The course is an intensive 12-week program to learn the skills necessary for acceptance in the trades and the opportunity for a career with high wage-earning potential.

Peoria Campus, Hickory Hall, 131

The Highway Construction Careers Training Program (HCCTP) at Illinois Central College is a grant-funded program sponsored by the Illinois Department of Transportation.

The goal of the Highway Construction Careers Training Program is to increase the number of minorities, women and disadvantaged individuals working in the construction trades.

The program is a 12-week free training course that focuses on preparing individuals for a successful building trade application process by increasing math skills, job readiness, and technical skills.

Training also includes OSHA 10-hour certification, Forklift, and Aerial Lift certification, and First Aid/CPR certification. Upon successful completion of the program, students will have the skills necessary to seek careers as laborers, cement masons, operating engineers, electricians, ironworkers, sheet metal workers, carpenters, bricklayers, and other union construction trades.

Registration is appreciated but not required.

 Peplow family to hold 90th family reunion

The descendants of Herman, Albert, William, Fred, John Peplow and Alvjna Burwitz, all originally from Germany, met at the Minier Park in 1930 and the reunion has continued since, known as the Peplow Reunion.

Attendance  was 115 people at the first reunion in 1930.

All Peplow relatives are encouraged to attend the 90th and final reunion on Sunday, July 28, at St. John’s United Church of Christ Fellowship Hall in Miner on North School Street across from Olympia West Elementary School.

A potluck will be held at 12:30 p.m. Table service and drinks will be provided. If you have questions, call or text, Secretary-Kathryn MCNeely at 309-275-8898.


: July is the peak month for grill fires


The Office of the Illinois State Fire Marshal (OSFM) wants to remind all Illinoisans to practice safe grilling techniques this summer. More and more people entertain outdoors during the summer months, leading to the increase of fires caused by grills. July is the peak month for grilling fires.

The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), reports over 70 percent of U.S. households own at least one outdoor BBQ, grill or smoker. Gas grills contribute to a higher number of fires than charcoal grills. NFPA reports 64% of households own a gas grill. On average, 10,200 home fires are started by a grill yearly. Each year 19,000 patients visit the Emergency room with injuries caused from grilling. Thermal burns are the most common injury with over 9,000 reported.

The Office of the State Fire Marshal advises everyone to take these steps to help ensure a safe summer filled with everyone’s favorite grilled foods.

  • Propane and charcoal grills should only be used outdoors
  • The grill should be placed away from the home or deck railings, and out from under eaves of your home and overhanging tree branches
  • Keep children and pets at least three feet away from the grilling area
  • Keep your grill clean by removing grease or fat buildup from the grills and in trays below the grill
  • Never leave your grill unattended
  • Always make sure gas grill lid is open before lighting it
  • Check the gas tank on your propane grills and hoses for leaks each time before using
  • If you smell gas while grilling, immediately get away from the grill and call the fire department
  • Make sure charcoal grill coals are cool before disposing on them in a metal container

Bonfires, pit fires and campfires can also create fire safety dangers during the summer months. Campfires need to be built at least 25 feet way from tents, shrubs and anything that can burn. Make sure fires are allowed in the area that you are camping. Use of chimineas, outdoor fireplaces and fire pits need to be at least 10 feet away from your home or anything that can burn.

For more information about grilling please visit the National Fire Protection Association’s website at: