Woodford County news briefs

University of Illinois Extension nutrition and wellness educator and registered dietitian Jenna Smith will give a presentation on the benefits of the Mediterranean diet at the Eureka Library. (Photo courtesy of Lee County) 


 August Diabetes Clinic: The Mediterranean Diet    

University of Illinois Extension invites you to join them for the August Diabetes Clinic: Mediterranean diet session. This program will be held from 1:30 to 2:30 p.m. on Thursday, Aug. 15 at the Woodford County Extension Office, 109 E. Eureka Ave., Eureka.

Have you heard about the Mediterranean Diet but are not quite sure what it is all about? Join us as we discuss the health benefits of a Mediterranean diet and how you can adapt it into your eating plan. You will receive a packet of recipes and watch a food demonstration.

Diabetes clinics are informal but informational walk-in programs with a different topic each month designed especially for persons living with diabetes. There is no cost to attend this program and no registration is necessary.

For more information on this program or upcoming events, contact University of Illinois Extension Nutrition and wellness educator and registered dietitian Jenna Smith at 309-663-8306 or email her at jesmith6@illinois.edu.

 Consultant talks Social Security basics at library

As you near retirement, one of the biggest financial decisions you’ll need to make is when to begin receiving your Social Security benefits.

With pensions disappearing, Social Security remains the major source of lifetime retirement income for Americans, so it’s important to take the time to explore your options and make an informed, well-reasoned decision.

At 6:30 p.m. on Thursday, Aug. 22 at the Eureka Public Library, 202 S. Main St., a free education-only program will be presented by financial consultant Chris Franklin.

Franklin will teach participants Social Security basics including estimating benefits and the advantages and disadvantages of different retirement ages, spouse survival benefits, and employment after receiving Social Security benefits.

To register, contact the library at 309-467-2922.


Gallery opens exhibit of abstract works

An abstract painting exhibit featuring the works of six artists will be on display at Heartland Community College beginning Monday, Aug. 12.

The Joe McCauley Gallery presents Abstraction: Paintings by Jan Brandt, Allison Carr, Joann Goetzinger, Megan Hinds, Megan Kathol Bersett and Melanie Dockery through Nov. 8.

An artist’s reception will be held during National Arts and Humanities Month on Oct. 7 from 4 to 5:30 p.m. at the Gallery.

Each of the featured artists approach abstraction from personal and formal considerations, and use acrylic paint as a primary medium. Abstraction offers viewers a wide range of content, style and painting techniques:

  • Brandt builds biomorphic forms with encrusted, textural surfaces.
  • Carr develops organic imagery by layering transparent and opaque mixed media.
  • Dockery employs gestural, expressive brushwork on large scale canvas.
  • Goetzinger constructs with cut-out, wood reliefs and linear patterning.
  • Hinds saturates and manipulates floods of vibrant color on canvas.

Exhibits, events, and parking at Heartland’s Joe McCauley Gallery are free. The gallery is located in room 2507 of the Instructional Commons Building on Heartland’s Normal campus, 1500 W. Raab Road. Hours are weekdays from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. on days the College is open.

For more information about this exhibit, contact Danell Dvorak, gallery coordinator, at danell.dvorak@heartland.edu, or call Heartland’s Liberal Arts and Social Sciences Department at 309-268-8620.



 Zoo invites visitors to check out Budgie Aviary

Have you been to the Budgie Aviary at the Peoria Zoo? You can experience these colorful birds through Labor Day from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.

There is no charge to visit the Budgie Aviary, but guests can purchase a Budgie Seed Sticks for just $2 to feed the birds from your hand. Budgie

Encounters may be subject to change or cancellation. These creatures are wild animals and the zoo cannot guarantee that they will land on your stick or stick to our schedule. Visit peoriazoo.org/budgie-aviary-encounter/ for more information.

ICC gets grant for workforce-training facility

Illinois Central College has secured a federal grant to build a new, expanded workforce-training building that could open by late 2020 or early 2021.

The $3 million Economic Development Administration grant for ICC’s Workforce Sustainability Center was announced by U.S. Rep. Darin LaHood’s office.

It’s slated, with the aid of state and local funds, to replace the Dirksen Hall structure that dates to the opening of the East Peoria campus more than 50 years ago.

Material presented to the school’s board of trustees earlier this year indicated the building would house programs including HVAC work, solar panel installation, a new geothermal energy program, truck driver training, highway construction, machinist training, computer-aided drafting, machinist training and other high-demand career programs.

“I think we’re getting people’s attention on these jobs,” ICC president Sheila Quirk-Bailey said.

LaHood credited her for bolstering the school’s focus on such programs.

The funds will provide work space and classrooms for 13 programs, Quirk-Bailey said.


 Evening with award-winning author and craft beer

The village is hosting a special evening with national award-winning author and Minnesota native J. Ryan Stradal on Tuesday, Aug 20.

The program will feature a book reading, craft beer and rhubarb pie to celebrate his new novel, “The Lager Queen of Minnesota.”

The evening will be 6 to 8 p.m. at the Bettye Jane Brimmer Center for the Performing Arts, 1327 East Kelly Ave.  For more information, call 309-322-1646 or go to www.thebettyjayne.com