Tazewell County news briefs

Irish Fest, featuring traditional Irish music, Highland Games and family fun, returns to downtown Peoria this weekend, Friday, Aug. 23 through Sunday, Aug. 25. (Photo courtesy of Peoria Irish Fest)


Eureka College partners with ICC on degrees

Illinois Central College and Eureka College have teamed up to help students gain their baccalaureate degrees.  Through a special partnership, ICC students with an associate degree will be able to seamlessly transfer to Eureka College in order to complete their baccalaureate degree in one of 30 academic or professional programs.

“It’s imperative for educational institutions to work together and place the common good of our students and community first,” said ICC President Dr. Sheila Quirk-Bailey.  “We are absolutely thrilled to offer this opportunity with Eureka College, along with the possibility of four years, tuition-free schooling through the two Promise programs.”

The agreement contains several unique attributes.  It made Eureka College history as it became the first agreement allowing Eureka College to accept transfer of applied science credits.

Among the applied science degrees from ICC that will be accepted are law enforcement (which will transfer to EC’s criminal justice degree), drug and alcohol counselor training (EC’s psychology), finance (EC’s business administration), personal/fitness training (EC’s exercise science or athletic training) and accounting (EC’s accounting).

The agreement also contains the Uniquely Eureka Promise, which allows eligible ICC transfer students tuition-free scholarships to complete two years at Eureka College.  Similarly, ICC’s established partnership with Peoria Promise offers eligible students tuition-free scholarships to ICC.

Thereby, the Uniquely Eureka Promise and the articulation agreement between the two colleges, has created the possibility for eligible students to complete their baccalaureate degree tuition-free.

The partnership also includes a reverse transfer provision, which enables ICC students who transfer to Eureka College before the completion of their associate degree the ability to transfer back to ICC in order to earn a completed associate degree.

For more information and a complete listing of programs encompassed by the partnership, visit eureka.edu or icc.edu.


Health officials warn of vaping-related illness

The Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) has received reports of six young people experiencing severe breathing problems after vaping, and is investigating five more individuals.  These individuals experienced respiratory symptoms including cough, shortness of breath, and fatigue. Some also experienced vomiting and diarrhea.  Symptoms worsened over a period of days or weeks before admission to the hospital.
“IDPH is working with local health departments and hospitals to investigate reported cases of hospitalized individuals with unexplained respiratory illness and a history of vaping,” said IDPH Director Dr. Ngozi Ezike.  “The short- and long-term effects of vaping are still being researched, but these recent hospitalizations have shown that there is the potential for immediate health consequences.”
IDPH is also working with local health departments, other states, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and the Food and Drug Administration to investigate the names and types of vaping products, as well as where they were obtained.  Without this information, we have been unable to conclusively determine which chemicals the individuals may have been exposed to.
People who experience any type of chest pain or difficulty breathing after vaping in the weeks or months prior to these symptoms should seek immediate medical attention.  Health care providers caring for patients with unexpected serious respiratory illness should ask about a history of vaping.
More information about e-cigarettes, vapes, and JUULs can be found on the IDPH website at http://www.dph.illinois.gov/topics-services/prevention-wellness/tobacco/e-cigarettes-and-vapes.

IDOT unveils new ad for Scott’s Law

The Illinois Department of Transportation is expanding its Life or Death Illinois campaign to include Scott’s Law, calling attention to the need to protect first responders, emergency personnel and frontline highway workers.

A new video that will air statewide comes after Gov. J.B. Pritzker recently signed legislation strengthening the law while bringing together stakeholders to find solutions to prevent future tragedies on Illinois roads.

The video features footage of Kyle Deatherage, an Illinois State Police trooper struck and killed while making a traffic stop near Litchfield in 2012.

Deatherage was survived by his wife and two young children. The video will air on TV, various online platforms and social media.

Scott’s Law requires drivers to slow down and move over, if possible, when approaching any vehicle with flashing lights. It was named after Chicago firefighter Scott Gillen, who was struck and killed while assisting at a crash scene. In the past year, three state troopers have been killed while performing traffic stops.

Life or Death Illinois is the first comprehensive approach by IDOT to reduce injuries and fatalities associated with motorcycles, bicycles, pedestrians, seatbelt use, work zones, and impaired and distracted driving.

The campaign, which this year features stories of Illinois residents who died in traffic crashes, is made possible through federal funds administered by IDOT.

For more information on the campaign and to view the video, visit www.lifeordeathillinois.com.


Bright Spot Awards announced for the summer

The Paul Peterson Bright Spot Award, sponsored by the East Peoria Beautification Commission, is named for Paul Peterson, who maintained the triangle garden at the intersection of Highview Road, Illini Drive and Simon Drive for 31 years until his death in January 2016.

The awards are given out monthly through October.

Eligible for the award are homes and businesses who have eye-appealing gardens and/or landscaping in their front yards, making it a “bright spot” of the area.

The property size does not matter. If a property looks appealing, residents are encouraged to nominate it for the award. To enter, go to www.cityofeastpeoria.com.

Bright spot recipients receive a yard sign that can be on display for one month.

2019 Award Winners


  • Costco, 301 West Washington St.
  • Charles and Estell Ford, 2214 Springfield Road
  • Earl Brown, 316 Campanile Drive
  • Stephanie Baker, 609 Sherwood Park
  • Jeff Beck, 411 Pekin Avenue
  • Don and Carolyn Jones, 400 Shady Knolls Drive


  • Sunnyland Chiropractic, 2362 Washington Road
  • Robert and Darcy Humphrey,1505 Springfield Road
  • Gregory and Letriana Cantrell,311 Arnold Road
  • Larry Prince, 305 Harmony Ave.
  • Joel and Maria Garcia, 312 Pekin Ave.
  • Stephen Bush, 101 Lawndale Court.


  • Immanual Evangelical Lutheran Church, 526 East Washington St.
  • Ronald and Betsy Pfeiffer, 305 Peace Field Lane
  • Barry Cloyd and Connie Randel, 508 Fondulac Drive
  • Jacob Grebner, 104 West Autum Lane
  • Rickie Bohm, 220 Johnson St.
  • Jason Talley, 1735 Meadow Ave.


 Irish Fest returns to downtown Peoria 

Formerly known as Erin Feis, Peoria Irish Fest has been in Peoria since 1981.This year’s festival runs from Friday, Aug. 23 through Sunday, Aug. 25 along NW Water Street.

Irish Fest, featuring traditional Irish music, Highland Games and family fun, returns to downtown Peoria this weekend, Friday, Aug. 23 through Sunday, Aug. 25. (Photo courtesy of Peoria Irish Fest)

The  family-friendly festival celebrates all things Irish — culture, music, food, storytelling, dance, and much more.

The weekend festivities kick off with the Happy Hour 5K race at 6 p.m. on Friday. After the race enjoy the best of the fest’s food, beverages and musicians from around the world.

Each participant in the race receives:

  • One free entry into Peoria Irish Fest
  • One souvenir pint glass
  • Two beverage tickets

Visit the website at https://peoriairishfest.com to  to stay up-to-date on who will be there, snag ticket specials, and improvements coming this year.


Chamber hosts Cash Mob event for Fourth Fridays

Join the Morton Chamber of Commerce for a Cash Mob at Jefferson Street Studio and Gallery , 206 W Jefferson St., Morton, to celebrate the last Fourth Fridays of the year, on Friday, Aug. from 5 to 8 p.m.

Cash mobs encourage communities to come out to one of their local businesses to make purchases to support the friends and families that run these businesses and give a little boost to the local economy.

Those that purchase something from the Gallery this evening have a chance to win a $10 Chamber Check.