Showing posts from February, 2011

Local girl scouts celebrate organization's global status

POPLAR CREEK-(WREX) Hundreds of Girl Scouts filled the North Boone Fire Station for Think Day, an event celebrating the international status of the Girl Scouts. Troops from Park North and Boone County set up displays to represent a country of their choosing... Read the story:

A Local Fashion Designer Competes To Have Her Dress Worn At The Oscars

Miriam Cecila Carlson has been creating dresses since she was little, a passion that's propelled this Rockford native to become a professional designer. "Just seeing their joy, like I'm able to make women just see excited when their trying on the dress, and I think it's a special gift to make people feel really good about themselves," said Carlson... Read the story and see video at:

Public To Get First Look At District 205's Independent Budget Review Monday - We'll get a first look at that independent review of the Rockford school districts projected budget Monday. Accounting firm Baker Tilly and city finance director Andres Samuel presented their findings to a special committee... Get the details at:

Cherry Valley Library delivers items to homebound

CHERRY VALLEY - Library systems all over the region are being impacted by the ongoing economic downturn. This is happening at a time when people are turning to the libraries for their entertainment options. These same libraries are being confronted with the continuing pressure of technology which can easily create new costs. The Cherry Valley Public Library District, which serves a geographic area in the southeast corner of Winnebago County and the southwest corner of Boone County, is seeing the same pressures as its peers. By offering new programs and services it has started to embrace the technology advances by offering assistance to its patrons in investigating the new technologies... Read the full story and see a photo at: (Editor's note: thank you to the Belvidere Daily Republican news

Freezing Rain and Snow Sunday Night, Monday Morning

WREX and are both reporting hazardous weather conditions Sunday night into Monday morning. Visit their sites or Rockford Weather News. WREX Rockford Weather News:

Illinois Union Members Bus To Wisconsin Protests

ROCKFORD (WIFR) -- Dozens of Stateline protesters return from Madison tonight after spending more than six hours at Wisconsin's state capitol. Union members from Winnebago and Boone counties traveled north together at around ten this morning. The group joined thousands of protesters. Members say they want to support public sector employees in their battle to keep collective bargaining rights... Read the story at:

Synthetic drug growing in popularity in Winnebago County - – Rockford’s News Leader

ROCKFORD (WREX) -  A relatively new drug, that recently became illegal in Illinois, pops up more often in Winnebago County. K-2 is synthetic marijuana and up until about a month ago, you could buy it at gas stations.  There are several different names for K-2, including... Read the story at:

It's About Time: A Photographic History of Watches

Cherry Valley Library District News... It's About Time: A Photographic History of Watches Sunday, February 27 at 2 PM - Dr. Robert Restuccia, a member of the Northern Illinois Watch and Clock Club, presents a visual history of the devices we use to keep track time. Program attendees are encouraged to bring their own treasured timepiece for show and tell. Registration is required. Use our online calendar or call 815-332-5161, Visit the library site at:

Tuesday, March 1 school board meeting moved to Ellis Arts Academy, large crowd expected

Over-capacity crowds at the Rockford Public Schools Administration Building at several recent school board meetings have prompted officials to move the Tuesday, March 1 open session to Ellis Arts Academy, 222 S. Central Ave. In the past several weeks, people have been packed into the District 205 lobby, Read the story at:

MMA Hits Rockford

Every sport has its minor leagues, and one of those lets amateurs throw their hat in the cage. Mixed Martial Arts is in Rockford tonight. Before getting in front of the crowds, the fighters tape up. Read the story and see video at:

Clock Tower Resort sold at auction

The auction of Rockford's Clock Tower Resort  is over and the facility has been sold, officials at said Saturday, Feb. 26. One of the most visible hotels and convention centers in the city, the Best Western hotel had a starting bid of $2.9 million. The auction began Feb. 17... Read the story at:

Tuskegee Airmen come to Rockford to share their stories

ROCKFORD (WREX) - A couple of the original Tuskegee Airmen celebrate Black History Month in Rockford. From 1941 to 1946, more than 900 African American pilots graduated from the Tuskegee Army Air Field becoming the county's first black military airmen. The chairmen of the Tuskegee Airmen in Rockford event says it's so important Read the story at:

Wis. Assembly Passes Anti-Union Bill

 MADISON, Wis. (AP) -- The Wisconsin Assembly has passed a Republican bill that would strip most public workers of their collective bargaining rights. Minority Democrats stalled the vote by launching a filibuster and offering dozens of amendments, forcing Republicans to defeat each proposal... Read the story at:

Freeport dad counsels son through high school and test pilot career

FREEPORT (WREX) - A Freeport dad talks about how proud he is of his test pilot son.  We told you about Lieutenant Commander Eric Buus Wednesday night and his job as the first naval aviator to fly the new F-35 jet. As exciting an opportunity as that is, Eric's dad, Allen, says his son would tell us he's just doing his job... Read the story at:

Public high school debates set for Feb. 26 at Heartland

The Fourth Annual Truth Talk Debate, which features teams from each of Rockford’s six public high schools, takes place from 10 a.m. to noon, Saturday, Feb. 26, at Heartland Community Church, 1280 S. Alpine Road. The debates, sponsored by the Nu Pi Sigma Chapter of Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity, Inc., began as a... Read the story at:

Board of Education member Saudargas responds to Sheffield’s public scolding

When Dr. LaVonne M. Sheffield finished scolding Sub District-C board member Alice Saudargas at the Tuesday, Feb. 22 Board of Education meeting, Saudargas was quickly prevented from defending herself.  Thursday, Feb. 24, the board member responded to what she said were untrue statements... Read the story at:

Joey Didier killer denied parole for 12th time

Robert H. Lower, the man convicted of killing Joey Didier almost 36 years ago, was denied parole Thursday morning, Feb. 24, and will remain behind bars for at least another three years. Read the story at:

Rockford takes public input on re-writing towing rules

ROCKFORD (WREX) - Rockford Aldermen ask for input changing an ordinance that they say is years out of date. The city's motor vehicle towing rules, which apply to towing cars in public right-of-ways, has not been re-written since the late 1980's.  Since then, not... Read the story at:

First-ever Sustainability Summit set for Feb. 26

John and Jane Q. Public, elected and appointed officials from Boone and Winnebago counties, as well as groups invested in the region’s future, are invited to attend the first-ever Sustainability Summit for the region. It takes place from 8:15 a.m. to 1 p.m., Saturday, Feb. 26, at the Northern Illinois University Rockford auditorium, 8500 E. State St. Attendees are asked to RSVP.  There is no cost, as the summit is made possible through a U.S. Housing and Urban Development grant. Purpose of Summit: Engage a Community in Plan Implementation Read the story at:

YouthBuild Helping Clear Machesney Park Homes

Machesney Park is clearing out homes damaged during the floods of 2008. And they're using YouthBuild to recover as much usable material as possible. This house will be demolished, but not before every useable piece of it gets a second shot in a new home.  "Furnace, electrical appliance, carpeting, doors, windows, everything that's not structural."... Read and see the story at:

Postal Service Study Could Impact Rockford Post Office

(Rockford, Illinois) Postal service to the Stateline region could be delayed if plans go through to consolidate Rockford's Harrison Avenue post office with the Carol stream location. A study will be done by the Postal Service to find out if the consolidation should take place and will last three to six months.   Read the story and watch video at:

School Board Delays Budget Vote By One Week

The Rockford School Board votes unanimously to delay a buget vote by one week.   The delay allows a Chicago accounting firm and the City of Rockford Finance Director to look over parts of the budget to determine how large the deficit will be for the 2011-2012 school year. The Rockford Education Association claims the... Read the story at:

Bishop Thomas Doran submits his retirement | The Rock River Times

In accordance with the laws of the Roman Catholic Church, Bishop Thomas G. Doran will submit his letter of retirement/resignation to the Apostolic Nuncio to the Vatican in Washington, D.C., in view of his birthday on Feb. 20, 2011. Canon 401 section 1 states: "A diocesan bishop who has completed his 75th year of age is requested to present his from office to the Supreme Pontiff, who will make provisions after he has examined all the circumstances."... Read the full story at:

Two men indicted for first degree murder in Winnebago County

ROCKFORD (WREX) -  Two men arrested for a murder in Winnebago County late last year are indicted by the grand jury... See the story at:

Superintendent Dr. LaVonne M. Sheffield spars with watchdog group, plays race card against rally speaker

After the school board delayed its vote surrounding $45 million in budget cuts at the Tuesday, Feb. 22 meeting of the Rockford Board of Education, Superintendent Dr. LaVonne M. Sheffield used time for her Superintendent's Report to spar with a watchdog group official. During public comment, Watchdogs for Ethics in Education (WEE) official Jane Hayes addressed the board, charging district officials with keeping the community in the dark during its decision-making process regarding the budget... Read the full story at:

Teens & Connections: Finding the technological balance

DAKOTA (WREX) - Things like SMART boards and even iPods help teachers advance the learning process. But that same technology can cause problems in the classroom. It's something area high schools working to find a balance with. "Technology is a wonderful thing. We've got to embrace it, we've got to welcome it in our school but there are ... Read the full story and find more information at:

Rockford-based Healthcare Study

STATELINE (WIFR) -- Some of the Stateline's top medical professionals come together to paint a picture of what health problems are seen in the area and how healthcare can be improved. The study focuses on ten major areas... Read the full story at:

JT’s Bourbon Street Grille celebrates Fourth Annual Black History Dinner

JT's Bourbon Street Grille will host a special event to commemorate the Fourth Annual Black History Month Dinner at 7:30 p.m., Saturday, Feb. 26, at 1407 N. Main St., Rockford. This year's theme is "Uniting and Empowering Our Community." This year's guest speakers will be... Read the article at:

‘Save our Public Schools’ speaker says he will not rip District 205 leaders

The keynote speaker at tonight's (Feb. 22) "Rally to Save our Public Schools" says he won't be involved in discrediting District 205 administrators. Although the rally will focus on the closure of eight schools and other budget cuts proposed by... Read the story at:

Rally to save Rockford Public Schools

ROCKFORD (WREX)- Meeting after meeting, people in Rockford School District 205 make their case to save their program or their school. Tonight guest speaker, Noel Hammett says the community must fight for what's best for all children, not just yours. Hammett is the Former President of... Read the story and see the video at:

Former Chicago Gang Member Shares His Story

STATELINE (WIFR) -- After nearly a decade in the Wisconsin prison system, a former Chicago gang member has taken advantage of a fresh start and wants to spread his message. Today Richard Harris has a traditional family with two kids and a wife, but that wasn't always the case. Born and raised in a Chicago housing project, Harris grew up in the gang life. Read the story and see the video at:

Committee recommends Baker Tilly to review school district budget

The panel of three ex-Rockford mayors appointed to head an independent audit of Rockford Public School District 205's finances, recommended Baker Tilly, a Chicago-based consulting firm, to do the job. The recommendation was made at the fourth meeting of the Budget Review Consultant Selection Committee, Monday, Feb 21. While Baker Tilly has no prior association with the school district or... Read the full story at:

WNIJ: Minimum wage debate

WNIJ NEWS (wnij) - There's a push in Springfield to raise Illinois' minimum wage. The plan calls for a gradual increase before the rate would level off at more than ten dollars an hour... Listen to the entire story at:

Rockford to ask IEMA to Pay for Blizzard Costs

ROCKFORD (WIFR) -- The city of Rockford is asking the state to help pay for the costs incurred during the blizzard earlier this month. Rockford spent more than... Read the story at:

Rockford doctor's business fights Asian carp invasion

ROCKFORD (WREX) - A Rockford doctor looks to get into the business of stopping the spread of Asian carp. The invasive species is threatening the Great Lakes eco-system. Dr. John Holden wants to turn the carp into something that can be used in animal feed or for human. He and his business partner tested a new way to process fish in Havana, Illinois last year. Now they're just a few months away from it running full time. Read the story and see photos at:

Rockford area union and tea party members join WI demonstrations

ROCKFORD/MADISON (WREX) - For the 5th straight day thousands of people demonstrate in Wisconsin's capitol against a proposed budget bill. Republican Governor Scott Walker proposed a plan that would cut benefits and limit collective bargaining for public workers. Even though this affects Wisconsin workers people from Rockford, on both sides of the issue, have joined the demonstrations. The proposed plan requires public workers to contribute more to their health care and pension costs and largely eliminate their collective bargaining rights. Read the story at: (Editor's note: WCN supports labor's right to fight tyranny, and denying worker's rights without discussion or representation is tyranny. Thanks to the AFSCME and building trades members who are supporting worker's rights in Madison.)

Lena Boy Scout Troop 91 Pancake & Sausage Supper (from WIFR)

Lena Boy Scout Troop 91 Pancake & Sausage Supper Mar 7, 2011 4:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. Lena American Legion Hall, Lena All You Can Eat! Kids (3-10): $4.00 ($4.50 at Door) Adults: $6.00 ($6.50 at Door) 815-369-4815 Tickets available from Lena Boy Scouts or Lena Maid Meats See this and other community events at WIFR:

Rochelle, Ogle Co. Beloit declare weather advisory/emergency

ILLINOIS (WREX)- The City of Rochelle and Ogle County announce a winter weather advisory in preparation of sleet and freezing rain. The advisory is in effect from 3:00 a.m. Sunday until noon on Sunday. Read the article and get all your \weather news at WREX:

Local Student Mathletes Advance To State Competition

The 28th Annual Regional Math Counts Program was earlier today. Local middle school students from across the Stateline competed for a chance at the state competition in an effort to advance to the national event in D.C. four students will represent Illinois. Read the story at:

Teachers union agrees to terms of school budget review, talks resume Monday, Feb. 21

The Rockford Education Association (REA) agreed to terms of a financial review it requested of Rockford Public School District 205's budget for fiscal 2012 Friday (Feb. 18). At the third meeting of the Budget Review Consultant Selection Committee, the panel told union reps the audit would only focus on three categories: general state aid revenue, corporate replacement tax and benefits expenses. Read the story at:

Runaway Senators Spotted in DeKalb

DEKALB (WIFR) -- After more than 24 hours on the run, some of  Wisconsin's  missing state lawmakers turn up on our turf. Two of the 14 Democratic senators, including the second most  powerful  senator in the state, talk to cameras in DeKalb. They've asked we not disclose their exact location. Read the story at:

Harlem-Roscoe Firefighters Annual Fundraiser

March 19, 2011 5 PM to 8 PM 10544 Main St, Roscoe, IL

State-of-the-Art Nursing Education

FREEPORT (WIFR) -- A local community college is showing off its high-tech labs that are being used to prepare our nurses of tomorrow. The more than 1,300 square foot facility houses five state of the art teaching labs, three classrooms and a computer lab. Nursing students are able to interact with simulation mannequins that can display actual symptoms of various illnesses. Please read the story at:

Rockton School staff meet District's new leader

ROCKTON (WREX) - Rockton's incoming Superintendent makes the rounds to check out schools and meet with staff and students. Mike Greenlee was named District 140's new leader after being principal in the... Read the story and see a photo at:

Guest Column: The dismantling of public education in Rockford

By David Stocker (as posted at ) I went to the recent District 205 open houses with a lot of questions. Representatives of the administration, however, weren't able to give clear answers to questions about consequences or alternatives. I heard many times: "I'm sorry I can't answer that for you. It's not my realm of expertise, but I'll ask someone." But Shannon Bingham of Western Demographics was both frank and knowledgeable. Bingham's firm specializes in "developing and consolidation" (dismantling) of school districts. He worked with Rockford Public School District 205 Superintendent Dr. LaVonne M. Sheffield in Detroit for five years. Bingham is an expert whose perspectives are valuable. For I believe Sheffield tells him what outcome she wants, he studies the situation and writes his report. Read the entire commentary and comment on it at: http:

Engineering fun for youth at Discovery Center Feb. 19

Civil engineers are using foam walls to give the Indy 500 Speedway safer curves. Computer science engineers are working on robots so tiny, they might eventually fit inside the human body. Hard to believe? Not if you're an engineer. Local engineering feats will be showcased at Discovery Center Museum from 11 a.m. to 3:30 p.m., Saturday, Feb. 19, to celebrate National Engineers Week, which runs Feb. 20-26. Read the story and get the details at:

City Market accepts applications for second season

After a triumphant first year, Rockford City Market is now accepting applications for the 2011 season. The second season for the market will run from June 3-Oct. 21. New this year is a short season (five-week) space rental for produce vendors only and a free workshop to help vendors maximize their market experience. During the first season, approximately 1,000 people attended the market every Friday, with nearly 2,000 visitors and 50 vendors during peak season months. A survey of market shoppers last year showed nearly 80 percent stayed at least 30 minutes at the market, while more than 40 percent stayed an hour or more. More than 75 percent spent at least $10 during their visit, while more than 35 percent spent $25 or more. Most visitors, more than 90 percent, said they would recommend the market to a friend. You'll find more information and application information at:

Rockford Foresters offering free tickets to the unemployed

Rockford, IL – FEBRUARY 15, 2011 – The Rockford Foresters announced today that a popular promotion from the 2010 season would be extended to the 2011 season and expanded. On game days, fans that are unemployed can get two free tickets to a game simply by showing their Illinois Department of Employment Security paperwork and a valid ID. Read the article at:

LIHEAP on the chopping block (listen to the story)

DEKALB (wnij) - President Obama's budget proposal includes a 50 percent reduction in funding for the Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program or LIHEAP. WNIJ's Dan Klefstad talks with Lowell Tosch, who helps distribute LIHEAP money to residents of DeKalb and Kane counties. Listen to the story at:

Guest Column: PBS, NPR funding under attack

Please be very concerned about all of the recent attempts and various pieces of legislation (H.R. 68, H.R. 69, H.R. 235, H.R. 408 and S. 178) that seek to eliminate funding for public broadcasting. Urge your U.S. senators and congressmen to oppose these pieces of legislation and any further efforts to cut or eliminate funding for this essential community resource. Local public television and radio stations are critically important to the 170 million Americans who access public broadcasting services each month. The small cost per person—annually $1.35 per citizen—is far outweighed by the benefits derived from having a strong public broadcasting system to address local community needs and provide services unmet elsewhere. Read the full article at:

YMCA president/CEO steps down after 23 years

YMCA of Rock River Valley President and CEO Wray Howard, who expanded the organization's community impact in his 23 years as its president, announced Feb. 10 he plans to retire June 30, 2011. Howard's 43-year career with the YMCA began in his home town of Regina, Saskatchewan, Canada. He spent three years with the YMCA of Metropolitan Chicago at the Logan Square Branch before coming to Rockford as a program director in 1974. In his announcement, Howard expressed how fortunate he was to have worked with such a strong, worldwide organization that is dedicated to improving lives by strengthening the foundations of community through programs that address youth development, healthy living and social responsibility. Read the full story at:

Keep Northern Public Radio Strong

Keep Northern Public Radio Strong 170 Million Americans for Public Broadcasting Congress will take a critical vote in the next few days to eliminate all federal funding for public television and radio stations, including $226,000 for Northern Public Radio. If this happens, it could mean the end of public broadcasting as we know it. Act now! See how you can help keep public broadcasting strong at:

City of Rockford a step closer to outsourcing ambulance services

ROCKFORD (WREX)-The Rockford Finance and Personnel Committee wants to see if a private company can provide quality medical services to the city at a fraction of the price. Tonight the committee unanimously voted to gather information to outsource ambulance services. Supporters say it could save the city millions of dollars. Read the full story at:

Turtle Tap robbery suspect in custody after 90-minute standoff

The suspect Beloit, Wis. police say robbed the Turtle Tap Sunday, Feb. 13, and a Beloit gas station two days earlier, is in custody. Ernest Sanwick, age unknown, was arrested at approximately 8:55 a.m. Monday, inside the Del-Mae Motel in Beloit. Believing Sanwick was armed, Beloit Police officials were assisted by the SWAT team while negotiators attempted to order him out of the hotel. Read the full story and see a photo at:

NIU to honor third anniversary of campus shootings

DEKALB (WREX) - The third anniversary of the tragic shootings on NIU's campus will be remembered with a memorial observance. A presentation of memorial wreaths will be held today at 3:00 p.m. in the Memorial Garden near Cole Hall. The service will be led by NIU President John Peters. Read the story and find a link to view the observance on-line at:

Rockford School Board Votes in Favor of Independent Review of Finances

ROCKFORD (WIFR) -- "You can take the word of our highly qualified financial team and the group of community experts who reviewed our budget, or you can choose to believe the teachers union which has an obvious agenda - that being to save the jobs of its members." Superintendent Dr. LaVonne Sheffield denounces the teachers union's statements made earlier this week. "We have discovered that this administration has made critical mistakes and miscalculations," REA President Molly Phalen previously said Tuesday. The union said the district's budget deficit is really around $15 million instead of $50 million. REA leaders also said administrators misplaced $41 million dollars. Now district leaders said that money was recorded wrong on state documents, but the bottom line of 50 million is still correct. Read the story and see the video at:

Local Egyptians celebrate Mubarak's resignation half a world away

ROCKFORD (WREX) - It's been an emotional roller coaster the past couple weeks for Magdy Kandil and his family. He lives in Rockford but was born in Egypt. "We've been watching the news since the beginning of this great movement," he says. "We had some sleepless nights. We were very anxious to know what the outcome was going to be. Yesterday was a disappointment to us. Today is a different story. This is a new day in history." The Kandil family left Egypt in 1978 but still have relatives there. They visited early last month before protests began. Magdy wishes he could be back there today, reveling in the triumph of revolution in his native country. Read the full story at:

Haldex Hydraulics Holding Job Fair

ROCKFORD (WIFR) -- Haldex Hydraulics is looking for skilled workers to fill over 20 positions, most being for CNC Machinists. The job fair will be held on Monday from 10-4:30, at the Eiger Lab on Fulton avenue in Rockford. Candidates are asked to bring their resumes. See the video at:

Theater: Sex Please, We're Sixty

Main Street Players of Boone County are presenting the comedy "Sex, Please, We're Sixty" on: Friday, February 11, 2011 at 7:00 pm Saturday, February 12, 2011 at 7:00 pm Sunday, February 13, 2011 at 2:00 pm Friday, February 18, 2011 at 7:00 pm Saturday, February 19, 2011 at 7:00 pm Sunday, February 20, 2011 at 2:00 pm All performances are at the Community Complex of Boone County Visit for more information.

Game of the week: Lutheran's defense leads them to regional title

ROCKFORD, IL (WREX) - Lutheran avenged their regional title loss from a season ago by beating Winnebago 49-31 in the Christian Life regional final. Rachel Konieczki led the Crusaders with 15 points while Callie Rezin added 13. Read the story and see photos at:

Home improvement grants available for Machesney Park residents

MACHESNEY PARK (wnij) - In Machesney Park, a number of low-income elderly residents are living in substandard housing built half a century ago. However, the village has a program that could help. Interested parties have until this Friday to apply for money to fix up their houses. WNIJ's Christopher Hosken reports. Read the story and get contact information at:

Tense crowd challenges school, park officials for sports partnership details

A visibly frustrated and vocal crowd of about 55 Rockford residents attended a public forum at the Guilford High School Auditorium Wednesday, Feb. 9. Each sought more information about the proposed sports partnership between the city's public school system and the Rockford Park District. The meeting marked the second listening session about the proposal since Superintendent Dr. LaVonne M. Sheffield announced District 205 can no longer afford the $3 million it spends each year to offer extracurricular athletics. Read the full story at:

Public gets second chance to speak out about outsourcing sports

ROCKFORD (WREX) - A second listening session about District 205's proposal to turn high school sports operations over to the Rockford Park District will be held tonight. The collaboration would transfer operations of all grade levels of the district's competitive school operations to the park district, including all management responsibilities and coaching. Read the story at:

Rockford teachers union calls district's deficit claims 'bogus'

ROCKFORD (WREX) - The Rockford School District's 50 million dollar budget shortfall is a "manufactured crisis." That is one of the claims from the Rockford Education Association which finally spoke out today on Superintendent LaVonne Sheffield's massive budget cuts. REA President Molly Phalen had some fighting words at today's news conference, calling Sheffield's proposed program cuts, school closings, and layoffs "unnecessary, unwarranted, and just plain wrong. The budget numbers do not add up. We have discovered that this administration has made critical mistakes and miscalculations." Read the full story as it is updated at:

31st Annual Rockford, IL Home Show

31st Annual Rockford, IL Home Show Thousands of home owners and families look forward to the 31st Annual Home Show to see what's new for home and garden. The Home Show is the ideal place to shop for new products, services, ideas, concepts and expertise on interior and exterior design. This exciting event provides the perfect atmosphere to find just the right products and/or services while being entertained with seminars of interest and live family entertainment. Date : From Friday, February 18 2011 - 4:00am To Sunday, February 20 2011 - 8:00am Location : Indoor Sports Center (ISC) Contact Info : Brenda Rotolo; 815-877-8043 You'll find this event and more at:

Knodle Signs With N. Iowa

Byron, Illinois-Byron's two-time State hurdling champion Paige Knodle will compete at Northern Iowa next year. She signed with the school on Monday. Read the story at:

Tube Talk: A conversation with Chicago Code’s Matt Lauria

Tube Talk: A conversation with Chicago Code's Matt Lauria By Paula Hendrickson, Contributing Writer I recently had a long, interesting conversation with Matt Lauria, who plays Detective Caleb Evers on Fox's new series, The Chicago Code. He was sharing the stories behind several on-set photos he provided for a photo spread in the February issue of Emmy, but we also discussed his experiences working in Chicago for former Rockfordian Shawn Ryan, creator and executive producer of The Chicago Code. Read the full story at:'s-matt-lauria/

Rockford Weekly Gas Price Update

ROCKFORD (WIFR) -- Average retail gasoline prices in Rockford have risen 3.3 cents per gallon in the past week, averaging $3.16/g yesterday. Read the story at: Tell your friends that you found this at .

Michigan study contradicts Governor Snyder's assertion that private sector workers earn half of public sector workers

A study released in Michigan on Thursday shows that Michigan state workers make nearly 7 percent less in pay and benefits annually than workers in the private sector. The study from Rutgers University contradicts a guide released by Michigan Governor Rick Snyder that suggested state workers earn twice as much as those in the private sector. From Workers Independent News:

Setback for Dakota's basketball coach, son out of hospital

ROCKFORD (WREX) - Dakota Head Basketball Coach Brian Benning suffers a setback in the hospital over the weekend. Read the story at:

Downtown Tales - Pecatonica

Arnie Binning's "Downtown Tales" brings you news and stories from Pecatonica. For more information visit:

Winnebago Bowling Sectional


Rockford Education Committee questions which schools to close

ROCKFORD (WREX) - Rockford District 205's Education Committee learns more about the reasoning behind more than $50 million worth of budget cuts. Please read the story at:

Ethnic Heritage Museum honors the Church of St. Anthony Feb. 6

From 2 to 4 p.m., Sunday, Feb. 6, the Italian Gallery of the Ethnic Heritage Museum will unveil its newest exhibit, "Celebrating the Italian Church of St. Anthony of Padua's 100-year history!" Read the story in The Rock River Times:

Benning Undergoes Surgery


Benefit Dinner for Maria Luna Cancer Survivor

Benefit Dinner for Maria Luna Cancer Survivor Feb 26, 2011 3:00 pm - 10:00 pm 126 15th Ave Polish Falcon Club Maria has been undergoing treatment for months and is in need of help due to loss of work. There will be dinner, Kurts Karaoke, raffles and a bake sale. All are welcome laurie smits 815-980-0229 Visit the WIFR Community Calender for this and other event details:

Salsa and Sauce Recall

UNDATED (AP) -- About 22,650 jars of American Spoon Foods brand Apple Chipotle Salsa, Maple BBQ Grilling Sauce and Pumpkin Chipotle Roasting Sauce because they may contain undeclared wheat flour and may put certain consumers at risk for wheat or gluten sensitivities or allergies. No illnesses have been reported. Read the story and get contact information at:

Storm's clean-up could come with big price tag for Rockford

ROCKFORD (WREX) - The impact of this week's monster storm on Rockford's snow removal budget could be chilling. Read the story at:

Sub Zero Wind Chills Open Warming Centers

STATELINE (WIFR) -- The mega winter storm is long gone but its left us with some bitter cold temperatures today. The high winds have the wind chill making it feel sub-zero outside. Visit this link for a listing of warming centers:

School & Other Closings for Thursday

WNIJ has an updated listing of school and other closing for Thursday, Feb 3rd. See the closing list at:

Bus Service To Resume Tonight

Rockford ( - If you're not comfortable driving around in your car, you're in luck. Rockford Mass Transit will resume bus sservice at 6:15 P.M. See the story at:

Travel Not Advise in Southern Third of State until Winds Subside and Roads are Cleared (WI)

WISCONSIN (WIFR) -- The Wisconsin Department of Transportation along with the Wisconsin State Patrol report that northbound I-94 in Racine and Kenosha counties and I-43 in Walworth County have been reopened after being declared impassable earlier in the day due to heavy snow and stranded vehicles. See the story at:

Interstate 39 reopens Wednesday afternoon

Illinois State Police says it was able to reopen Interstate 39 just before 4:00 p.m. Wednesday. I-39 had to be closed after the heavy snow made the road too dangerous to drive on. It was closed from Rockford to Bloomington. See the story and get more links at:

Updated Weather Forecast From National Weather Service

Rockford Weather News, Breaking Storm News

I noticed many clicks on the weather widget, so I put together a site that collects all the local and national weather news for Rockford and the surrounding areas. You'll find links to forecasts, maps, audio, and blog discussions on Rockford weather. Visit: .