In their recent meeting, the Bond County Board approved six county aid projects for the Bond County Highway Department. Costs ranged from $1,800 to $5,000.

The board said they are still waiting for discussion regarding the county billboard zoning ordinance. In other zoning matters, Jon Zeeb has resigned from the Zoning Board and recommended Kevin Vonder Haar as a replacement. Board member Wes Pourchot noted that he knew of one other resident of northern Bond County interested in filling that vacancy. The position will be advertised before any action is taken.

County Clerk Randy Reitz detailed for the board recent computer issues experienced in his office and said his staff was currently recording information by hand. His office is one of only five in the nation using their current system. Reitz has identified a new computer system he would like to use and said he can use some savings his office currently has, but will still need $10,000 a year for the next three years from the county. He said his goal was to begin a discussion with the board to minimize the financial impact on the county.



The American Farm Heritage Museum recently added a unique piece to their collection when Marshall Mollet donated a centuries-old tree stump. Museum President Ollie Schaefer told us more about this piece of Bond County history.

“It’s about seven foot high, and it became hollow. It [grew] up here on the Shoal Creek, down on 140 down here, and it was on the Mollet—what’s Marshall Mollet’s farm right now,” Schaefer told WGEL. “They’ve taken it down years ago, I think. They saved the stump, and it became hollow and they’ve smoked meat in it for years, and the kids have played in it. It’s just something that’s been preserved and now he’s turning it over to the museum to take care of it.”

Schaefer said the tree is estimated to be over 400 years old and will be kept inside for preservation.



Richard Niepert was recognized during the Mulberry Grove American Legion Post 1180’s pancake and sausage breakfast for 60 years of continued service with the post. Post commander Charles Bone said the ceremony was a surprise for Neipert.

“He knew that he was coming up on his 60th year and he was supposed to be receiving one, but he didn’t know that I had already received it a couple weeks earlier,” Bone said. “He kept bringing it up and bringing it up and he said, ’Boy, I don’t know why it is I haven’t gotten my 60 year award,’ and I said, ‘I don’t know, Dick. We’ll just wait and see, buddy. I’ll get on the phone and I’ll call Bloomington and see what’s going on.’ Well, I already had it.”

Bone said Niepert has served as post commander in the past and is currently serving as adjutant.

“Dick's the backbone of the American Legion Mulberry,” Bone told WGEL. “He knows all the ins and outs and what have you, what you have to do and what you can’t do.”

Niepert served in the United States Marines and received his award in front of family and friends.

Photo courtesy of Dan Willis



The Kingsbury Park District now offers a smart phone application that can help parents keep track of game schedules this spring. Park District Director Jerry Sauerwein told us how to download the new app.

"They can go to the Google store or the iPhone store, search for the Kingsbury Park District, they can download the app for free,” Sauerwein told WGEL. “If you have a child participating in soccer, as long as you know the team name, you like that team and then your schedule will be automatically on that app on your phone. Anytime you have your phone with you, if you need to look up the schedule, it will be there. If the scheduled would change with the rain-out, or once the rain-out is made, that schedule automatically updates.”

Sauerwein said baseball schedules will also be available on the app this summer.


St. Joseph’s Hospital in Breese plans to open an Immediate Care 365 clinic in New Baden this summer. Spokesperson for the hospital, Mary Heeren told us the clinic will offer cost effective walk-in medical care.

“We’re at the very, very beginning stages of it. We did sign a sales agreement between the hospital and the New Baden Chamber of Commerce here at the hospital,” Heeren told WGEL. “We have not done anything to the land yet. The winter weather has not been conducive to any kind of site work, but we are looking at being open sometime, I’m thinking, early summer. That’s going to be just north of the intersection of Illinois Route 160 and Illinois Route 161.”

Heeren said the clinic will be open from 7:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. except for major holidays when the clinic will be open from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.


Prairie Farms


Greenville Firefighters have responded to several false alarms caused by carbon monoxide detectors in the last few months. Fire Chief Bill Johnston shared these tips on better understanding your CO detector.

“I would say that when you get a CO detector, look the back of it, read the manufacturer’s suggestions on that.” Johnston told WGEL. “It will possibly tell you one beep every thirty seconds could need a battery, four quick beeps and then stop, four more, you know is an indication that you have high CO, one beep every ten seconds could mean something else. The instructions are on the back of them, look at it and read those. I even seen one the other day…he had it posted on his wall right next to it, so he didn’t even have to take it off his wall. He had it right there.”

Johnston said the number of false alarms is higher this year because the life of a CO detector is about seven years, and detectors became legally required in homes seven years ago. He said that while the majority of CO calls they receive are false alarms caused by dead batteries or malfunctioning detectors, they have also responded to calls where CO levels were actually high. Johnston said helping to save someone’s life in those situations makes it worth all the effort.  



State officials are urging people to get out and volunteer next week. March 23rd through the 29th is National Service Week in Illinois. There are thousands of volunteer opportunities available all across the state. Many can be found on www.Serve.Illinois.gov.


The Pocahontas Center hosted an American Red Cross blood drive last week in the school gym. Thirty-two people registered with twenty-seven units collected. Tina Tompkins received an eight-gallon pin and Jack Stewart, Sr. a seven-gallon pin.

Thursday’s American Red Cross blood drive, sponsored by VFW Post 1377 registered 53 perspective donors with 46 units collected, exceeding the goal of 41 units set by the Red Cross. Valerie Gaffner was awarded a 12-gallon pin, Dean Thole was presented an 11-gallon pin, Tami Potthast was presented a six-gallon pin, and Janice Quick was awarded a three-gallon pin. 


Lady Comets Soccer lost 2-1 in the opening round of the Carlinville Cup to Bloomington Central Catholic last week.  The Comets goal was scored by Maria Reinhard. Emily Gaffner had 16 saves in goal. The girls defeated Springfield SE 4-1 in the second round. Reinhard had a hat trick with 3 goals and Kassidy Alderman scored the game-winner. Earning the win in goal was Emily Gaffner with 10 saves.


Bert E. Sinclair

Bert E. Sinclair, age 96, of Carlyle, passed away Sunday, March 23, at the Carlyle Healthcare Center. Funeral services will be Wednesday, March 26 at 10:00 a.m., at the Zieren Day Funeral Home in Carlyle. Friends may call Tuesday, from 4:00 to 8:00 p.m. and Wednesday, from 8:00 a.m. until service time at the funeral home. Memorials are suggested to Hospice of Southern Illinois or to Case Halstead Library.

Mr. Sinclair was born on February 9, 1918, in Jersey County, Illinois, a son of Frank and Louise (Baum) Sinclair. He married Marian E. Piggott on June 17, 1951, in Medora, Illinois, and she preceded him in death on May 4, 2010.

He is survived by a son - Robert Sinclair and wife Diane; a daughter - Martha Sinclair and a granddaughter - Denise Sinclair, all of Carlyle; a brother-in-law - Harold Piggott and wife Lynn of Glen Carbon and many nieces and nephews.

He was preceded in death by his parents – Frank and Louise Sinclair; 2 brothers – Herschel Sinclair and Norman Sinclair and his wife Kathryn; and a sister – Frances Sinclair.

Mr. Sinclair was a veteran of the United States Army, serving from 1941 – 1945. During World War II, he was stationed on Attu Island in the Aleutian Islands. Bert graduated from the University of Illinois in 1947, and worked as the Assistant Farm Advisor in Jersey and Washington Counties. He then served as Farm Advisor in Clinton County from 1953 until his retirement in 1977. Mr. Sinclair was called upon to organize the first Clinton County Fair held in Carlyle in 1951. He remained active with the Clinton County Fair and had served on the Fair Board. Bert had also served on the St. Louis Dairy Council and the Illinois Poultry Council. He was a member of the Clinton County Farm Bureau, the Clinton County Holstein Club and was active in 4-H. Mr. Sinclair enjoyed gardening, fishing, making fishing lures, and spending time with his granddaughter, Denise.


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