List of upcoming community events (Nov. 6, 2013)

Fall Sports Awards Night is tonight at PBL High School
Paxton-Buckley-Loda High School’s annual Fall Sports Awards Night will be held Wednesday, Nov. 6. Refreshments will be served in the commons at 6 p.m., followed by the presentation of awards to fall athletes at 6:30.

Ag Careers Night offered by University of Illinois Extension
The University of Illinois Extension’s Ford-Iroquois office has scheduled its second Agriculture Careers Night for Thursday, Nov. 7, at the Ford-Iroquois Farm Bureau building in Gilman. Students in junior high school and high school and their parents are invited to attend to learn more about agriculture career options and college degree programs available. From 5-6 p.m., participants will have the chance to visit with agriculture departments from eight colleges, including the University of Illinois, Joliet Junior College, Illinois Central College and Illinois State University. A formal program will begin at 6 p.m. with a panel of local agribusiness professionals speaking on the agriculture careers they hold. Students and parents will learn about the duties of the various agricultural careers, the schooling and training needed, and the courses on which they can focus in school to help prepare them for such careers. There will be time for questions. Light refreshments will be served. Registration is not required but can be made by calling 815-268-4051 or visiting

Free screenings offered by medical center in Urbana
A free event at 5 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 7, at Presence Covenant Medical Center in Urbana will offer blood pressure and BMI screenings, light refreshments and presentations by a number of speakers about how to take care of your heart. Speakers include Christie Clinic Cardiac Electrophysiologist Abraham Kocheril, who will be speaking about irregular heartbeats; Christie Clinic Cardiologist Prakash Thopiah, who will then present on updates in cardiology, including early heart attack care; and a panel of heart experts from Urbana and Danville who will be on hand to answer audience questions.  The event will end with a complimentary wine tasting led by Dr. Kocheril. Registration is required and can be made by calling 877-737-4636.

Tea Party to host movie night
The Iroquois County Tea Party will show the documentary movie “The Harbinger Decoded” at 7 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 7, at the Agape Fellowship Church, 425 W. North St., Watseka. Doors open at 6:30 p.m. Admission is free of charge, and free popcorn will be served.Candy and soda pop will be available for purchase. The hour-long movie is a fast-paced visual narrative of the “story behind the story” of Jonathan Cahn’s best-selling fiction thriller. Told in three successive “acts,” the documentary features background material on the nine prophetic signs and interviews with top Christian leaders — and reveals how “harbingers” rooted in ancient Israel continue today with the completion of the Freedom Tower and the 2012 election.

Loda Legion fish fry Friday
Loda American Legion Post No. 503 will hold its monthly all-you-can-eat fish fry on Friday, Nov. 8, with serving starting at 5 p.m., at the Legion Hall in Loda. Carryout orders will be available for purchase, as well. A drawing for a $50 gift card to the Paxton IGA will be held at the fish fry.

Loda church to host Saturday night service
A brief, informal Saturday night service of praise will be offered at 6:06 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 9, at the Loda United Methodist Church, located at the corner of Locust and Jackson streets in Loda. For more information, call 386-2237 or email

Murder-mystery show to take place at Railside in Gibson
Side by Side Productions will present the audience-interactive murder-mystery “High School Reunion” on Saturday, Nov. 9, at Railside Golf Club, 120 W. 19th St., Gibson City.  Doors open at 6 p.m. with the meal served at 7. The evening includes a two-meat buffet, with beef brisket, turkey, party potatoes, green beans and salad. The cost of tickets includes the buffet, coffee or iced tea and tip, as well as all the clues attendees need to solve the mystery. To order tickets, contact Railside Golf Club at 784-5000.   The murder-mystery is about the alumni from Ford  County High School, who reunite to reminisce about their days together. Unfortunately, not all of those memories are good ones as they remember a death that is 20 years old, an unsolved auto accident and much more.  Could the evening turn tragic for some of the alum? The murder-mystery is designed to keep the audience watching and listening for clues. The guests are encouraged to snoop, eavesdrop and be nosy. There may be arguments, secret liaisons, note passing, and more. Who knows?  There might even be a murder where the audience will have to help solve the crime.

Veteran’s Tribute Shoot slated at Foosland Sportsman’s Club
A Veteran’s Tribute Shoot will be held Sunday, Nov. 10, at the Foosland Sportsman’s Club, located five miles south of Gibson City on Illinois 47. Breakfast will be served at 6 a.m., and the shoot will start at 8. There will be a raffle for an AR gun. There will also be food and prizes. Veterans and their families are welcome to atend.

Thomasboro church to sponsor chicken dinner
Peace Lutheran Church in Thomasboro is sponsoring its annual fried chicken dinner from 11 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 10, at the Thomasboro Community Building, 600 Commercial St., Thomasboro. The menu includes fried chicken, au gratin potatoes, green beans, cole slaw, rolls, homemade desserts and drinks. Carryout orders are available. The meal will be served for a suggested donation of $10 for persons over age 10 and $5 for children 6-10. Children under 6 eat for free.

Legion Auxiliary to meet
The Byron Hickerson Unit 432 of the American Legion Auxiliary will hold its regular monthly meeting at 4 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 14, at the Legion building in Buckley. 

Diabetes support group to meet
A diabetes support group meeting will be held from 7-8 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 14, in the radiology waiting room at Gibson Area Hospital in Gibson City. The topic of discussion is “Smart Splurges to Avoid Holiday Weight Gain.” For more information, contact Eileen Woolums at 784-4093.

Tri-County Players to present ‘The Sunshine Boys’
The Tri-County Players’ production of Neil Simon’s “The Sunshine Boys” opens Friday, Nov. 15, at the Market Street Theatre, 120 N. Market St., Paxton. The show runs Nov. 15-17 and Nov. 22-24, with showtimes at 7 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays and 2 p.m. Sundays. Tickets can be purchased in advance by calling the theater at 379-7028. The play, about two retired comedians in a quasi-marital relationship, features Tom Janowski as Willie Clark and Greg Herriott as Al Lewis. For 43 years, Willie and Al were the Sunshine Boys, a headline double-act, but, after a decade in non-speaking retirement, Willie’s nephew and agent Ben, played by Brandon Roberts, books their act for a CBS comedy special. But reuniting them is not as easy as Ben would hope.  Willie is a testy old cuss who loathes his ex-partner because of his decision to quit the business. Al, meanwhile, is a gentler soul who lives with his daughter in New Jersey and wonders why he should go through an old routine with the cantankerously vindictive Willie.  Directed by Pam Herriott and Tom Janowski, the supporting cast includes Anne Newman, Debbie Kafer, Trent Groves and Evan Seggebruch.

Historical Society to meet Nov. 15 in Paxton
The Ford County Historical Society’s meeting at 7 p.m. Friday, Nov. 15, at the water tower museum in downtown Paxton will feature a program consisting of two book reviews. “The Civil War Diaries and Selected Letters of Robert Newton Gorsuch” was edited by Everett Gorsuch Smith Jr. — a great-grandson of Robert Gorscuh, who moved to Button Township in Ford County after the Civil War, and whose tombstone can be seen in Glen Cemetery in Paxton. Smith lives in Oregon and grew up in East Central Illinois. His cousins, Norma Nafziger and Jack Smith, are local residents. Judy Jepsen-Popel, president of the historical society, will present the highlights of the “Civil War Diaries.” A different book, “Final Doom: The Frederick Hollman Story,” will be introduced by Rosemary Kurtz of the Paxton Carnegie Library. The author, Kevin Scott Collier, came across micro-film files of Hollman, a resident of Grand Haven, Mich. According to Collier, Hollman became one of the nation’s first  serial killers.  In Ford County, people know Hollman as the only person to be hanged in the county.

Shimkus to speak to Ford County GOP on Nov. 16
U.S. Rep. John Shimkus, R-Collinsville, will speak during the Ford County Republican Central Committee’s next meeting, scheduled for 8:30 to 10:15 a.m. Saturday, Nov. 16, at the Arcade Cafe, 132 N. Market St., Paxton. The public is welcome to attend. Shimkus is serving his eighth term in Congress.  He represents Illinois’ 15th Congressional District, which is comprised of all or parts of 33 counties. For more information, contact Ford County GOP Chairman Tom Bennett at 784-8540 or

Holiday shopping bazaar set in Gibson City for Nov. 16
The American Lutheran Church in Gibson City will host a holiday shopping bazaar from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 16.  The sixth annual Little Achievers Holiday Bazaar will feature more than 15 booths, with products for sale ranging from handmade crafts, Tastefully Simple, Color by Amber jewelry,  cosmetics, Perfectly Posh, Polish Pottery, The Ruffled Owl, Scrapbooking, Scentsy, PartyLite, Blossoms’ Barn gifts, 31 Gifts, bows, crochet/knitting items, Pampered Chef, Usborne books, and infinity scarves. The first 25 shoppers receive a free gift.  There will be many events going on throughout the day, such as drawings for door prizes and raffles.    Attendees who bring in three or more canned goods get into the drawing for a chance  to win one of many prizes that day. A barbecue lunch will be available for purchase from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.; the lunch includes chips, drink and dessert  The American Lutheran Church is located at 905 E. First St., Gibson City.  For more information or to inquire about having a booth, visit

Art fair to be held in Urbana
The Craft League of Champaign-Urbana will present its 31st annual Juried Art Fair — featuring the work of 33 artists — on Saturday, Nov. 16, and Sunday, Nov. 17, at the Urbana Civic Center, 108 E. Water St., Urbana. Admission is free. The art fair will be open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Nov. 16 and from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Nov. 17. For more information, visit

AgMasters Conference nearing
Online registration is available for the University of Illinois Extension’s fifth annual AGMasters Conference, scheduled for Dec. 2-3 at the iHotel and Conference Center in Champaign. The conference begins with a general session featuring five speakers who will cover topics related to agricultural production and the environment. Following the opening session, participants will be able to select eight out of 16 specialized workshop topics. The workshops will provide research-based information on timely subjects. People can register by Nov. 16 by visiting   For more information, contact Sandy Osterbur at

Bluegrass band to perform with Jake’s Boys in Gibson City
High Cotton, a bluegrass band from eastern Illinois, and Jake’s Boys, a southern gospel group from the Gibson City area, are are holding a joint concert at 6:30 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 17, in the sanctuary of the Gibson City United Methodist Church, 206 E. 10th St., Gibson City. Each group will perform for about 50 minutes with a finale by the combined groups. A free-will offering will be collected following the concert. Prior to the concert, the church’s junior high and senior high Sunday school classes are hosting a chili supper in the fellowship hall of the church. Serving will be from 5 to 6 p.m. Proceeds from the supper will be split between two projects the teens are supporting this year: a new well in Kenya and a new swimming pool for Gibson City.

Chamber’s quarterly luncheon to be held Nov. 20
The Paxton Area Chamber of Commerce is holding its final quarterly luncheon of the year at noon Wednesday, Nov. 20, at the American Legion building on East Pells Street. The speakers are Craig Loschen from Flip Switch Consulting and Kristina Phelan, executive director of the chamber. They will be speaking about the use of social media by businesses. The Paxton Woman’s Club will provide lunch. Reservations are required and can be made by calling Phelan at 379-4655. The luncheon is open to the public.

Church of Christ to host blood drive on Nov. 21
The Paxton Church of Christ will host an American Red Cross blood drive from noon to 6 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 21, in the church’s fellowship hall. The church is located at 400 W. Ottawa Road, across from Hardee’s. To make an appointment to donate blood at the event, call Mary Werner at 379-2261. Persons who last donated blood on or before Sept. 27 may be eligible to donate again. Donors are asked to bring photo identification or a Red Cross donor card.

Thanksgiving meal offered at Church on Nov. 28
The Paxton Church of Christ will provide a free home-cooked Thanksgiving Day feast to the public at 1 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 28. Persons planning to attend are asked to email Liz at or call her at 379-4443 by Nov. 22.

Benefit for Denise Pacey set
A breast cancer benefit to raise funds for Denise Pacey’s medical expenses is scheduled for Saturday, Nov. 30, at the 103 East Bar & Grill in Buckley. The event starts at 4 p.m. and features an auction, 50/50 raffles and food starting at 5 p.m. Triple Ot Buck will perform from 9 p.m. to 1 a.m. Those attending are asked to wear pink.


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