6:24 am
Thu January 15, 2015

Springfield Airport Sees Increase In Passengers


In an ever changing industry, Springfield's Abraham Lincoln Capital Airport is keeping pace.  More travelers are taking flights in to and out of the facility.

Mark Hanna, Executive Director of the Springfield Airport Authority, said the most recent numbers show strong support for flights to Dallas and Florida. 

"We've had numerous conversations with Allegiant," Hanna said. He adds some of discussions have centered on potentially adding flights to Phoenix and Las Vegas, but it's too soon to say what will happen.

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11:30 am
Thu January 8, 2015

Cuba: Illinoisans Look Ahead And A Look At Some Cool Cars

Rich Berning

The recent Obama administration announcement of easing trade and travel restrictions certainly caught Rich Berning's attention.  The Springfield man had just visited the island nation in November.  Bill Wheelhouse, who visited Cuba in 1999 with Governor George Ryan, chatted with Berning.  We also have a few photos of those old American cars they keep running on the island.

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6:28 pm
Wed January 7, 2015

Midwest Travel - St. Louis Museums Provide A Winter Break

A sister plane to Charles Lindbergh's famous Spirit of St. Louis hangs in the main hallway of the Missouri History Museum in St. Louis. Filmmakers used the plane in a 1957 movie about the aviator's successful flight across the Atlantic Ocean. The origi
Brent Bohlen

Freelance travel writer Mary Bohlen tells us about three indoor museums in St. Louis' Forest Park. 

The Missouri History Museum provides an up close look at several unique and important items with a 1904 World's Fair exhibit now underway.

The St. Louis Art Museum includes a modern art collection and works by Degas and Monet.

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5:11 am
Wed January 7, 2015

Springfield & Most Other Schools Closed Today

Most area schools are closed today due to the dangerous wind chills.   Springfield District 186 has canceled classes. No school in Chatham Glenwood and Rochester. All other public schools are closed in Sangamon County.  Schools are closed in Jacksonville & Lincoln.

Meteorologist Mike Bardou  says central Illinois will get
progressively colder. Springfield's temperature will fall from about 3 degrees
in the morning to about minus-7 in the afternoon, with wind chills of 22- to

2:01 pm
Fri January 2, 2015

Sangamon County Homicides Up In 2014

Sangamon County has seen a slight increase in homicides in 2014.   The State Journal-Register ( ) reports seven homicides were investigated in the past year, compared to five in 2013. Police made arrests in five of the 2014 homicide cases.  

Chief Deputy Joe Roesch of the Sangamon County Sheriff's Office says investigators spent weeks working on the first homicide. Three people were eventually arrested and charged with first-degree murder in the Jan. 31 shooting death of 24-year-old Justin Sharp.  

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12:15 pm
Wed December 31, 2014

West Central Ill. Men Given Posthumous Pardons For Underground Railroad Work

Dr. Richard Eells House in Quincy
Credit The Friends of Dr. Richard Eells House

Illinois' Governor has posthumously pardoned three men for their work with the Underground Railroad. 

The men all lived in west central Illinois and were convicted more than 170 years ago based on laws that prohibited helping runaway slaves.  Those laws remained in place even after Illinois abolished slavery in 1824.  

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10:28 am
Wed December 17, 2014

Illinois TV Anchor On Cancer And Leading A Normal Life

WCIA's Dave Benton

It’s been three months since TV news anchor Dave Benton told viewers that his brain cancer was back, and doctors told him he had months to live.  In the time he has, he says his goal is to live life to the fullest.

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9:52 am
Tue December 16, 2014

WUIS-SJR Business Report The End of Times For Bel-Aire Motel

Postcard of the Bel-Aire in the heyday.
Credit Route 66 University

Bel-Aire Motel residents caught off guard by demolition announcement on this week's Business Report.

Tim Landis and Bill Wheelhouse also talk about the closing of a century old business in the community and the sales of Road Rangers in the area.

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1:03 am
Tue December 16, 2014

Midwest Travel: Chicago All Aglow For The Holidays

The Chicago Botanic Garden in suburban Glencoe is all lit up during its Wonderland Express celebration.
Credit Chicago Botanic Garden

It's the most wonderful time of the year.  And Chicago is one of the top locations to visit for the holidays. 

Mary Galligan wrote about some of the most festive attractions in the latest edition of Illinois Times. 

From the Morton Arboretum and Chicago Botanic Garden  to the Brookfield and Lincoln Park Zoos, Navy Pier, Millenium Park and more.  Holiday light displays and events are sure to delight families.

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7:46 am
Mon December 15, 2014

Defense Bill Funds Pike County National Park Study

Illinois' senators say federal defense legislation includes a request to a study if a National Park designation is merited for the New Philadelphia archaeological site in western Illinois.  

Congress on Friday sent the defense bill to President Barack Obama. Sens. Dick Durbin and Mark Kirk say the bill includes a provision directing the Secretary of the Interior to conduct a study on the site.  

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4:16 pm
Thu December 11, 2014

Sierra Club Appeals FutureGen Decision

Credit WUIS

The Sierra Club is appealing an Illinois regulators' conclusion that the pollution controls for the FutureGen clean-coal project are adequate.  

The Sierra Club said in a news release Thursday that it has filed a state-court appeal of the Illinois Pollution Control Board's decision to allow the FutureGen project to proceed. The board last month rejected the environmental group's claim.  

The coal companies working on the FutureGen project, known as the FutureGen Alliance, did not immediately respond to a request for comment.  

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Illinois Issues - Code Switch Illinois
12:05 pm
Tue December 2, 2014

Report Looks At LGBT Equality In Cities

Graphic of cities considered for the MEI

Same sex marriage took effect in Illinois earlier this year, and while our state has joined the ranks of others that offer an increased amount of rights and protections to the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender community, cities differ in laws and policies that promote equality. A report that was released a few weeks ago looked at cities from around the country - seven of which are in Illinois.

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9:27 am
Wed November 26, 2014

Locals Organize For Vigil In Response To Ferguson

Reggie Dale & Sr. Mary Jean Traeger
Credit Rachel Otwell/WUIS


Dozens of people gathered last night at the Union Baptist Church on the east side of Springfield for a prayer vigil. It was held in response to recent news out of Ferguson, Missouri.  


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7:27 am
Wed November 26, 2014

Illinois Hunters Kill 52,000 Deer Over The Weekend

Credit Illinois Trophy Bow Hunters

Illinois hunters have killed nearly 52,000 deer during the first weekend of the state's firearm hunting season.  
 The state Department of Natural Resources said Tuesday the preliminary total is 51,830 deer for the Nov. 21-23 weekend.

That's down from nearly 56,000 during the first weekend of the 2013 firearm season. Jackson County had the largest harvest last weekend with about 1,500 deer.  

The second segment of the 2014 season is Dec. 4-7.  

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3:51 am
Mon November 24, 2014

Midwest Travel: Starved Rock In The Winter

LaSalle Canyon in Starved Rock State Park
Credit flickr/Curtis Albert

If you are in the mood to travel, you might think about far away distances.  But there are plenty of things to see right here in Illinois and the midwest.  That's the focus of a new segment on Illinois Edition on WUIS. 

Mary Bohlen and Mary Galligan write travel articles for the Illinois Times.  Their trips are within a day's drive.  They look for affordable, family friendly destinations.  From state parks to small towns to big city amenities.


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10:41 am
Wed November 19, 2014

Phoenix Center Strives To Connect With Transgender Community

Credit Luca Casarteli/Wiki Commons

November 20th is known as "Transgender Day of Remembrance." It's an acknowledgement of those who were the victims of violence caused by their gender identification and presentation. Unlike the rest of the words in the acronym "LGBT" - transgender is not a sexuality. It is an umbrella term used for those who feel the sex they were born as is not an accurate depiction of the gender they feel themselves to be. 

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7:50 pm
Wed November 12, 2014

It's Community Foundation Week

John Stremsterfer
Credit CFLL

It was 100 years ago that community foundations began.  It was in Ohio.

"It was actually a banker from Cleveland who thought,there's all these charitable trusts being formed.  If we consolidated these it could be more efficient for philanthropy," said John Stremsterfer, President and CEO of the Community Foundation for the Land of Lincoln.  

Based in Springfield, it serves Sangamon, Cass, Christian, Logan, Menard, Morgan, and Montgomery counties. The organization helps match donors with specific causes. 

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6:57 am
Mon November 10, 2014

Hearing On Transmission Line That Would Come Through Region

An effort to bring a high voltage power line across Illinois and other states is getting a discussion tonight (Monday) in Missouri. 

That state's public service commission begins hearings on a request by Clean Line Energy partners to build a high voltage power line from wind turbines in Kansas to Illinois, Missouri and Indiana.      The  plan would bring the lines near Hannibal then through Pike, Greene and Macoupin  counties among others in central Illinois.

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On Point
4:54 pm
Thu November 6, 2014

Spouse of On Point Host Dies, Met in Illinois

Tom Ashbrook in the studio.
Credit On Point/

On Point host Tom Ashbrook’s wife, Danielle Guichard-Ashbrook, died of cancer Wednesday evening. Tom and his family have been by Danielle’s side throughout this difficult time.

Tom and Danielle were high school sweethearts from Illinois, lived in India, Tokyo and Hong Kong.  They settled and raised their family in Newton, Mass.

Danielle was an associate dean at MIT, and served as Director of the International Students office. She is survived by Tom, their three children and one granddaughter.

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6:24 am
Thu October 30, 2014

Authorities: Springfield Woman's BAC Three Times The Legal Limit

Sangamon County Courthouse

Authorities say a Springfield woman had a blood-alcohol level more than three times the legal limit when involved in a crash that killed two.  

Andrea E. Little is charged with aggravated driving under the influence in connection with a crash that killed 16-year-old Pleasant Plains High School student Danielle Allen. Authorities say Little was eastbound on Illinois 125 late Saturday when her car veered and crashed into a car driven by Allen.  

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7:38 pm
Tue October 28, 2014

Young Philanthropists Keep Giving Back

Stacy Reed (left) and Sarah Buening
Credit WUIS

Sarah Beuning calls it the "snowball" effect. 

"Young Philanthropists is a giving circle at the Community Foundation for people who want to get involved in philanthropy at kind of an early level," she said.  "The more people who get together, the bigger impact we can have."

Every member gives $125 and the money is pooled and grants are awardedThe next round will be going out soon. A deadline of Nov. 3 is coming fast for those who work with children and want to apply. 

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4:51 am
Tue October 28, 2014

Making Buildings Healthier From The Inside Out

Credit flickr/JoshuaRothhaas

What chemicals wind up in building materials?   And do they impact your health?   

Those are questions Jeffrey Saad has been asking.   He's deciphering the "recipes" that are used in construction.  The Chicago based architect with Perkins+Will says of the more than 82,000 chemicals registered in the U.S., only about 200 have been analyzed for their potential threats.  And only 5 are banned.

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7:15 am
Tue October 21, 2014

Area Cub Scouts Burned In Explosion

Three Cub Scouts and their adult leader have been injured after an experiment caused a chemical explosion in Montgomery County.  

Raymond Mayor Dennis Held tells KSDK-TV the boys were having a meeting outside a church Monday evening when they conducted an annual experiment. The explosion occurred when they mixed boric acid and anti-freeze in a metal fire pit with the intention of making a green flame.  

Illinois Poverty
12:05 pm
Mon October 20, 2014

UIS Poverty Series Continues With "American Winter" Screening


It’s been 50 years since the war on poverty was declared by President Lyndon B. Johnson, but Illinois still has about 15% of residents living in it – the same percentage living in poverty that half century ago. American Winter is a documentary made about families facing poverty, especially after the most recent recession. It’s being presented on the UIS campus Monday night, and a discussion will follow. It’s part of the university’s series on poverty.

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6:18 am
Thu October 16, 2014

Mentor Graham's Marker

New Salem school house where Mentor Graham taught

The man who ran the school during Abraham Lincoln's time in New Salem is getting an honor in Kentucky.

A historical marker commemorating the life of an early 19th century educator who was a longtime friend of Abraham Lincoln will be unveiled next week in Greensburg, KY.  

The Kentucky Historical Society says the marker is in honor of William Mentor Graham, who was born in Green County and taught at Greensburg Academy before moving to Illinois. There he taught Lincoln arithmetic and grammar, and Lincoln lived with Graham for six months in 1833.  

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5:59 pm
Tue October 14, 2014

Jimmy Carter Brings Human Rights Mission To Jacksonville

Jimmy Carter at Illinois College
Credit Rachel Otwell/WUIS

Former president Jimmy Carter made a stop in Jacksonville Tuesday and spoke to over 2,000 people about his quest for peace and human rights. He spoke in a crowded gymnasium at Illinois College. 

His appearance coincided with the school's new initiative called 'Pathways to Peace' in which students and faculty will study the Middle East, and have participants travel to Dubai and the West Bank.

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1:55 pm
Mon October 13, 2014

Union At Quincy Public Library Votes To Strike

Credit Quincy Public Library

Union members at a public library in western Illinois have voted to go on strike amid tough contract talks.
A business representative for the Machinist union, Ross Miller, says the 32 members at the Quincy Public Library voted Sunday night to reject contract terms
and to strike. There's a five-day waiting period before they can begin any strike.  
The Quincy Herald-Whig ( cites Library Board President Jeff VanCamp as saying he's ``disappointed'' by the union move. He says he
thought the contract offer was ``generous.''

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2:15 pm
Thu October 9, 2014

History Series: Sousa In Springfield

John Philip Sousa

Our history series continues with a look at the relationship between Springfield and John Philip Sousa. The stories are sponsored by the Sangamon County Historical Society. Performers include Tom Hutchinson and Eric Thibbodeaux-Thompson. 

And now, for something completely different...

CLICK HERE for The Sousa Archives at the Center for American Music at the U of I in Champaign.


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9:04 am
Thu October 9, 2014

M.E.R.C.Y. Celebrates 15 Years Amid Financial Challenge

M.E.R.C.Y. Communities began helping homeless mothers and their children 15 years ago in Springfield. The work involved providing transitional and permanent housing, along with other services.

Fundraising and grants has helped cover costs.  But this year, word came that a federal HUD grant won't be renewed.   And unless that money is recouped, some services will be scaled back or eliminated.

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5:03 pm
Thu October 2, 2014

13th District Congressional Debate 10/21

L- Rodney Davis, R - Ann Callis
Credit U.S. House,


Please suggest questions for the candidates in the comments section at the bottom of this page.

WUIS/Illinois Issues and AARP Illinois invite you to join us for a Congressional District 13 candidate debate between Congressman Rodney Davis (R) and his opponent Judge Ann Callis (D). 

What: Congressional District 13 Candidate Debate

When: Tuesday, October 21, 2014, 7:00 p.m. (doors open at 6:30 p.m.)

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