Tazewell County news briefs

St. Joseph Catholic Church in Pekin will hold a family carnival and dinner on Friday night. (Photo courtesy of St. Joseph Church)


New law gives opens Civil War papers to the public

The Tazewell County Clerk’s Office is proud see passage this afternoon by the Illinois State Senate of SB 1007, sponsored by Sen. Chuck Weaver and co-sponsored by Sen.David Koehler.

SB 1007 was requested by the Tazewell County Clerk’s Recorder of Deeds Division.

One of the deputy clerks, Sharon Sciortino, pointed out to the new Tazewell County Clerk John C. Ackerman the volumes of military discharge papers the Tazewell County Recorder of Deeds has had the honor to hold throughout the years.

After reviewing the 980 Civil War Discharge Papers held by the office, discussion focused on the fact that current Illinois State Law does not allow the public access to these documents and the rich valuable record of service to our nation they contain.

SB 1007 changes Illinois State Law to make Military Discharge Papers public documents following 62 years after filing. If the documents contain any personal information, it will be redacted on copies made available to the public. This change matches current United States government policy for retention of military discharge papers they maintain.

“These documents are a treasure chest for genealogist and will allow the public the opportunity to recognize the historic courage and military commitment of members of their communities throughout the history of the State of Illinois.” said Tazewell County Clerk John C. Ackerman.

Ackerman has previously stated that following passage of this new law he would actively work with regional museums to make the 980 Civil War Military Discharge papers available for public viewing.

Precincts redistricting meeting scheduled

The Tazewell County Clerk’s Office will be hosting a workshop meeting on May 6th at 3 p.m. in the clerk’s office to begin the process of redistricting the precincts in Tazewell County.

The county currently has 135 precincts of various populations. The goal of this redistricting effort is balance the population of precincts in Tazewell County.

Tazewell County Clerk John C. Ackerman has estimated a reduction in precincts to 120. This Redistricting process must be completed and approved by the Tazewell County Board at their June Meeting.

This working meeting will be open to the public and the media and will include the active participation of the Tazewell County Democrat and Republican Leadership.

County yearbook now available online and in print

The Tazewell County Clerk’s Office has finalized the 2019 Tazewell County Yearbook. The yearbook is currently available online now and will be available in print for free at the Tazewell County Clerk’s Office after May 1.


Offered each year by the County Clerk’s Office, the Tazewell County Yearbook offers the citizens a resource for a listing and contact information for county government officials ,municipal leaders township officials, political party officials, and more.

New to the 2019 yearbook is a cover letter from Tazewell County Clerk John C. Ackerman, a new layout, and county elected officials photos have been included again. The biggest addition is the introduction of Tazewell County school board members information in the yearbook.


The Illinois Department of Transportation once again is participating in the annual
“Trees to Schools” initiative.


Road work on U.S. 24 causing lane closures

The IDOT construction on U.S. 24 between East Peoria and Washington involves repairing joints between the lanes from College Drive in East Peoria to Cummings Lane in Washington and requires lane closures. Repairs are expected to be complete within two to three weeks, and permanent pavement markings will be applied about two weeks after completion.

Motorists can expect delays and should allow extra time for trips through this area. To avoid the work area, when feasible, use of alternate routes should be considered.


Church hosting annual carnival and family dinner

St. Joseph Church of Pekin is hosting a carnival and family dinner on Friday, May 3, from 5 to 8:30 p.m., at St. Joseph School.

The carnival will offer games and prizes, inflatables, balloon art entertainment by The Unique Twist & Twisting Crew, photo booth, Kona Ice Truck, and food.

A family dinner will be served from 5 to 8 p.m., as well as a plant and bake sale.   A silent auction with many unique items will also be available.  Raffle tickets for a 1 in 3000 chance to win $10,000 will also be for sale.

This event is free and open to the public.  Tickets for the games and inflatables are 50 cents each; tickets can be purchased in advance at St. Joseph School.

For more information, or to purchase raffle tickets or carnival tickets, please call St. Joseph Church of Pekin at 309-347-6108.


Bloomington hosts Illinois Symphony Orchestra’s season finale

Rachel Barton Pine, recognized as a Great Performer of Illinois, joins the Illinois Symphony Orchestra led by acclaimed Music Director Ken Lam at their season finale to perform Bruch’s tuneful “Scottish Fantasy” and Vaughan-Williams “Lark Ascending”.

Audiences will experience the full force of nature in Lili Boulanger’s impressionistic depiction “Of a Spring Morning”, and Respighi’s triumphant masterpiece “Pines of Rome.”

Listen live to the Illinois Symphony Orchestra on Friday, May 3, 2019 at 7:30 p.m. at the Bloomington Center for the Performing Arts and Saturday, May 4, 2019 at 7:30 p.m. at Sangamon Auditorium, University of Illinois-Sangamon.

Both concerts will be followed by a special post-concert reception hosted by the Illinois Symphony Guild of Bloomington-Normal in Bloomington and the Illinois Symphony Guild of Springfield in Springfield.

Tickets are $21, $42, and $63. Student tickets available for $6 (Age 6-26) with valid Student ID, children 5 and under are free with a paying adult. Senior and group discounts are also available. Tickets may be purchased in Bloomington through the Bloomington Center for the Performing Arts at 309-434-2777 or in Springfield through the UIS Performing Arts Center for Sangamon Auditorium at 217-206-6160.

Tickets may be purchased online, by phone, or through the ticket office. Senior, group, or student priced tickets are not available online.

Pine has appeared as soloist with many of the world’s most prestigious ensembles, including the Chicago and Vienna Symphonies, Philadelphia Orchestra, Royal Philharmonic, Camerata Salzburg.

She performs on the “ex-Bazzini ex-Soldat” Joseph Guarnerius del Gesu (Cremona 1742). rachelbartonpine.com


 Illinois schools receiving 5,000 trees from IDOT

The Illinois Department of Transportation once again distributed 5,000 seedlings to schools throughout the state  in cooperation with Living Lands & Waters in honor of Earth Day on April 22.

The “Trees to Schools” initiative helps offset the loss of trees removed or otherwise affected by construction and maintenance activities. Each of the nine IDOT highway districts received 550 trees to distribute to local schools.

Participating schools use the trees on their grounds or distribute them to students as a learning opportunity about the importance of trees to the environment.

One tree can produce as much oxygen in a single season as 10 humans consume in one year. Trees absorb carbon dioxide, nitrogen dioxide and sulfur dioxide and release oxygen in return. Trees also reduce erosion, filter chemicals, produce shade and provide habitat and food for birds and other animals.

The trees were provided for free to IDOT as part of Living Lands & Waters Million Trees Project. Varieties included red oak, swamp white oak, bur oak and redbud.

Since 2009, IDOT has distributed approximately 50,000 seedlings through Living Lands & Waters program.