Benton Lions Club Vice President Terry Swift pictured with
Benton High School ambassadors Makaela Hampton and
Carson Hill. Photo courtesy of Cindy S. Page

According to an article by the Harrisburg Register, the Benton Lions Club, with help from students in Benton, Akin and Ewing-Northern, as well as businesses and area churches, now has collected more than 10,000 pair of used eyeglasses for recycling.

It is not known exactly when the 80-year-old club first started collecting and recording its efforts. It is known that Charles Towle, Dr. John Wooley and Bill Lockin were some of the early leaders of the recycling project.

The collection of used eyeglasses will be ongoing. Glasses may be dropped off at any of the following locations: Spencer, Spencer and Spencer, Marion Eye Care, SSLM Health Medical Group, the Benton Public Library, US Bank, Peoples National Bank, the American Legion, All Stars and Stitches, Leffler Funeral Home, Pate Funeral Home, or one of the following churches: Immanuel Baptist Church, Whittington Church, First Christian Church, First United Methodist Church and First Baptist Church.

If your business, church or organization would like to have a drop-off box, notify any Lions Club member.
The Illinois Bicentennial Commission today released its first video commercial promoting the state’s 200th birthday. The :30 second spot is the center point of a statewide multimedia campaign named after the theme of the yearlong celebration: BORN, BUILT & GROWN in Illinois.

The campaign, which will run from now until the 200th birthday party on December 3, 2018, will showcase Illinois’ influence on the worlds of music, sports, agriculture, literature, commerce, history, technology and innovation, transportation, art and architecture, among others.

The content for the effort is pre-produced and being distributed statewide for carriage on television, radio, digital and social media. The messages can be run as public service announcements by media outlets or packaged by outlets for sponsorship by local advertisers. The Illinois Broadcasters Association is the distributor.

"We're delighted with this creativity and the opportunity it now provides our association's members in seeking local sponsorships," remarked Dennis Lyle, president and CEO, Illinois Broadcasters Association.

The content was produced by Chicago-based AnswersMedia and paid for with private funds.

The Bicentennial program incorporates material supplied by Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum, Illinois Association of Museums, Illinois Department of Agriculture, and the Illinois State Museum.

To view the commercial, click here.

Congratulations are in order for the sixty-two men and women who graduated on Friday from the Illinois Department of Corrections Academy!

The IDOC Mission Statement:
"To serve justice in Illinois and increase public safety by promoting positive change in offender behavior, operating successful reentry programs and reducing victimization."
Rep. Severin and IDOC Acting
Director John R. Baldwin


Thirty-two men and women will be assigned to the Murphysboro Life Skills Reentry Center and thirty men and women to the Pinckneyville Correctional Center.

Thank you to the Illinois Department of Corrections Honor Guard for the presentation of colors and the Murphysboro High School Drumline for their participation!