Byron Forest Preserve District’s Jarrett Prairie Center Museum Wins 2017 AASLH Award of Merit

The American Association for State and Local History (AASLH) proudly announces that the Byron Forest Preserve District is the recipient of an Award of Merit for the Jarrett Prairie Center Museum Renovation Project. The AASLH Leadership in History Awards, now in its 72nd year, is the most prestigious recognition for achievement in the preservation and interpretation of state and local history.

In fall 2016, the Jarrett Prairie Center Museum opened their totally renovated 4,000 square foot museum with new permanent exhibits that focused on interpreting the relationship of people with the surrounding prairie. The new exhibits tell the story of northern Illinois’ vanishing local heritage resource...the tallgrass prairie ecosystem...and the complexity of people’s interactions with it in the past, present and future. Corporate sponsors were Byron Bank, Prairie Forge Group and OSF St. Anthony Medical Center. This year, AASLH is proud to confer forty-eight national awards honoring people, projects, exhibits, and publications. The winners represent the best in the field and provide leadership for the future of state and local history. Presentation of the awards will be made at a special banquet during the 2017 AASLH Annual Meeting in Austin, Texas, on Friday, September 8. The banquet is supported by a generous contribution from the History Channel.

The AASLH awards program was initiated in 1945 to establish and encourage standards of excellence in the collection, preservation, and interpretation of state and local history throughout the United States. The AASLH Leadership in History Awards not only honor significant achievement in the field of state and local history, but also bring public recognition of the opportunities for small and large organizations, institutions, and programs to make contributions in this arena. For more information about the Leadership in History Awards, contact AASLH at 615-320-3203, or go to www.aaslh.org.

The American Association for State and Local History is a not-for-profit professional organization of individuals and institutions working to preserve and promote history. From its headquarters in Nashville, Tennessee, AASLH provides leadership, service, and support for its members who preserve and interpret state and local history in order to make the past more meaningful in American society. AASLH publishes books, technical publications, a quarterly magazine, a monthly newsletter, and maintains numerous affinity groups and committees serving a broad range of constituents across the historical community. The association also sponsors regional and national training workshops and an annual meeting.



102.3 The Coyote Wins Big at IBA Silver Dome Awards

The 2017 Illinois Broadcasters Association (IBA) held their yearly awards banquet Thursday night at the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library & Museum. Each year radio and TV stations in the state compete against each other in their respective market size to take home the coveted Silver Dome Award.


102.3 The Coyote (WYOT-FM) Kris Wexell, took first place for Best Radio Personality for the 2nd year, also taking first place for Best Radio Local Broadcast Team, Kris Wexell & Jay Burlison on The Coyote Morning Show. The Coyote took first place for Best Radio Humorous Commercial, with credit to Shawn Lowe, Jay Burlison & Rick Green. (for Small Market)

Good Time Oldies 1060 WRHL (WRHL-AM) was awarded 2nd place for Best Website, The Coyote awarded 3rd place for Best Radio Station Self Promotion for The Coyote Morning Show. (for Small Market)


102.3 The Coyote & Good Time Oldies 1060 would like to thank the IBA, all of our listeners, advertisers and supporters.

 

Harvard State Bank Press Release

In 2009, The Harvard State Bank made a commitment to Oregon and the surrounding area when they purchased the Rock River Bank to continue to serve the needs of the community - both in banking and community service. Phillip Lehmann, CEO and President of The Harvard State Bank stated, “Expanding our footprint to the Oregon Community was a great decision for our bank.” As they settled in, working with the Oregon staff and community - they soon realized that this is a community rich in history and sincere dedication to family and local entities. The current location has a lot of history, a main stay of the corner of 4th and Washington. Yet, there were limitations that needed to be addressed, which is what they did. Mayor Ken Williams of Oregon stated,” It has been a pleasure working with the Lehmanns' from Harvard and the local Oregon Staff to make this move possible.”

The Bank is full service -offering all of the traditional banking products as well as making local decisions for mortgage and commercial loans. They offer a variety of mortgage loans, including traditional, FNMA, FHA, FHLB (with a grant program) and many more.
 
Chris Mueller, Country Financial, stated, ” As a Member of the Board of Directors of The
Harvard State Bank, I am very proud to have been a part of this new building process and our Bank’s commitment to our communities.“ The new building, complete with the landmark cupola, located at 510 Washington Street will be opening on April 24th. This new building will combine the former location at 101 S. 4th Street along with the 5th Street drive-up facility tomodernize their operations and make it much ore convenient for their customers as well as the community. Combining the two into one with a large parking lot, ATM in the drive-thru and a convenient electric car charging station just to name a few! John Coffman, Ogle County Treasurer, added: “Looking out from the court house and watching the new bank building progress has been exciting - and the added benefit to the community will be good for all.”
 
The Bank will officially open on April 24th. During the week of May 1st, they will hold their grand opening which will last the entire week capping off with a cook-out (with the assistance of the Ogle County Pork Producers), on May 6th from 11 to 2. They hope everyone will stop by during the week or Saturday to see the new bank building and the staff. Give-aways will happen daily; and someone will leave with a new grill on Saturday! They extend a cordial invitation to all in the community. 


HIghland and NIU Sign Reverse Transfer Agreement

Representatives from Northern Illinois University and Highland Communty College held a ceremonial signing of a reverse transfer credit articulation agreement between the institutions.  The agreement was formally approved by Highland's Board of Trustees in February and subsequently signed by HCC  President Tim Hood and Northern Illinois University President Doug Baker.  The agreement allows eligible NIU students who transferred from Highland without associate degrees to earn the two-year degree using credit from NIU courses.

Through the agreement, credits completed at NIU may be transferred back to HCC and used to satisfy the degree requirements for an associate degree. 

"This agreement recognizes the significance of completing an associate degree," said Hood.  "For various reasons, some students transfer to four-year institutions before completing all of the requirements needed to earn an associate of arts or science degree.  This agreement will allow them the option to use courses taken at NIU to fulfill those requirements and gain the valuable diploma."

NIU President Doug Baker praised the significance of the agreement, stating "Students want a hassle-free transfer process and to receive credit for the work they do.  This reverse transfer agreement provides just that.  It is a wonderful tool that allows students to demonstrate their determination to excel to future employers and graduate institutions.  It is also another example of how institutions of public higher education in Illinois can collaborate to deliver high-quality, affordable education."

For more information about reverse transfer from Northern Illinois University to Highland Community College, contact NIU Director of Registration and Records Jerry Montag at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or 915-573-1747 or HCC Director of Enrollment and Records Jeremy Bradt at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or 815-599-3500.

 

OPD Receives Playground Grant

The Oregon Park District was chosen by the Illinois Park and Recreation Association and GameTime to receive a playground grant of $48,000 and serve as a National Demonstration site during the IAPD/IPRA Soaring to New Heights Conference on January 20.

IPRA teamed up with GameTime to promote a statewide funding opportunity to promote healthy play and encourage best practice designs for active behavior. The grant was announced during a Professional Development event offered in October that Executive Director Erin Folk and her Recreation Staff attended.

"Having the opportunity to learn about best practice play research and available grant funding served as a launching pad for the District to begin to tackle our playground replacement needs. Fairgrounds Park is at the top of the list as the oldest playground owned by the District" said Folk.

The grant allows communities to put research into action and promote quality of life in our parks. The District was able to demonstrate the communities need for additional play projects through an essay submission and support received through studies conducted by the Ogle County Health Department and KSB Hospital. Both organizations found physical inactivity as a primary source of chronic disease for those who live in our area.
 
After attending the development session, researching the grant and incorporating the Oregon Park District playground replacement schedule, Folk began the submission process. 
 
"Evaluating our current park structure and community needs it became evident that we had an opportunity to create a one of kind play experience at Fairgrounds Park.” 
 
The District incorporated three key design strategies which resulted in Fairgrounds Park being awarded the grant and three National Demonstration Site designations. The sites will contribute data toward the publication of a White Paper to highlight best practices and outcomes achieved. The initial findings will be presented at the IAPD/IPRA Conference in 2018.
 
The National Demonstration Site program was conceived to recognize thoughtfully planned outdoor play environments that ensure that people of all ages and abilities can be physically and socially active through play and recreation. Communities that are recognized can create positive attention and attract partners and funding that support this social capital. Additionally, by collaborating with program partners, the successful process can be replicated for others to share.
 
"Over 53% of District residents reside within a mile of Fairgrounds Park and the park is easily accessible by bike or on foot. Creating a space to include play and fitness features allow families a place to participate in play and physical fitness, resulting in healthier families," said Folk.
 
The Oregon Park District will replace the existing play structure at Fairgrounds Park with an IONIX GT structure utilizing a similar foot print to the current playground. The IONIX structure is designed to be accessible and include the six key play elements: balancing, spinning, brachiating, sliding, climbing and swinging. Fairgrounds is designed in a way that allows those entering the park by car, bike or foot to access the playground immediately. 
 
A 3/4 mile trail loop is split into the north and south section, which both start and end at the playground. The loop will be used to incorporate outdoor fitness within three play pods along the north section of the Fairgrounds Park. Each of the pods will include play equipment for children and at least three pieces of fitness equipment for adults. The pathways and pockets will extend the play value and keep children moving as they move from one pocket to the next. 
 
Combining play structures and fitness equipment is a new concept and to date has been rarely implemented nationwide. "Combining fitness with play equipment along a paved trail will create an opportunity for adults and children to be active together and increase the chances for our community being more physically active and lead to reduced chronic diseases" said Folk. 
 
"We are excited to receive the grant and planning has already begun. The project will be completed by June 1, in time for families to enjoy it this summer" Folk added. "The goal is for patrons of all ages to increase the amount of daily physical activity they partake in. We also hope parents will utilize park amenities and teach their children about the importance of daily physical activity. Adult support is a key component in developing active youth."
 
With the new playground and fitness areas the Oregon Park District plans to launch a community initiative called Operation Move in mid-May to coincide with Fairgrounds Park opening. Watch for more details!

For more information about the Oregon Park District or any of our parks visit www.oregonpark.org or call (815) 732-3101.
 

Forest Preserve Wins Award

Byron Forest Preserve District’s Jarrett Prairie Center Museum Wins 2017 AASLH Award of Merit The American Association for State and Local History (AASLH) proudly announces that the Byron Forest Preserve District...

Read more

Local Radio Wins Award

102.3 The Coyote Wins Big at IBA Silver Dome Awards The 2017 Illinois Broadcasters Association (IBA) held their yearly awards banquet Thursday night at the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library & Museum....

Read more

Highland & NIU Transfer Agreement

HIghland and NIU Sign Reverse Transfer Agreement Representatives from Northern Illinois University and Highland Communty College held a ceremonial signing of a reverse transfer credit articulation agreement between the institutions.  The...

Read more

Harvard State Bank Opens New Building

Harvard State Bank Press Release In 2009, The Harvard State Bank made a commitment to Oregon and the surrounding area when they purchased the Rock River Bank to continue to serve...

Read more

Oregon Park District Receives Grant

OPD Receives Playground Grant The Oregon Park District was chosen by the Illinois Park and Recreation Association and GameTime to receive a playground grant of $48,000 and serve as a National...

Read more