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Grants benefit Lincoln Public Library

[DEC. 21, 2002]  The Lincoln Public Library District has received two new grants from the office of Secretary of State and State Librarian Jesse White.

The Dream Again grant entitled "Great Books, Great Films" will be used to purchase classic movies in the DVD format and great works of literature in the CD format. The library will also receive a new DVD player and public performance movie licensing rights for one year. The license will allow the library to host a series of public programs with the new DVD movie titles.

Lincoln will share this $32,100 grant with the public libraries in Chatham, Rochester, Clinton, Effingham, Mount Zion and Taylorville. The grant is part of $2.46 million awarded to Illinois libraries by Secretary White's office.


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The Opportunity Knocks grant entitled "Terry Turtle's Teaching Totes" will be used to purchase tote bags for the youth services department at the library. The tote bags will cover a variety of topics and contain books, puppets, stuffed animals, activity cards and teaching suggestions. These tote bags will be ideal for young children or developmentally disabled patrons and will be available for checkout.

This second grant is part of almost $200,000 in grants awarded to Illinois libraries by Secretary White's office.

For more information please contact Richard Sumrall at 732-8878 or visit the library, 725 Pekin St.

[Lincoln Public Library press release]

Places To Go

'The Broken Cat'

[JAN. 8, 2003]  "The Broken Cat," written and illustrated by Lynne Rae Perkins, Greenwillow Books, 2002, 30 pages

Being hurt or sick is a scary experience for children. It can be even scarier when a favorite pet becomes sick. After all, a pet cannot tell you where it hurts! In this delightful picture book for children preschool to third grade, Ms. Perkins explores that experience. While helping the child understand the fear and accept that all living things can be hurt or broken, we as adults also revisit those tense life situations.


This story is about a little boy named Andy and his pet cat, Frank. One day when Frank the cat comes back into the house after roaming free all day, he does not seem to behave in his normal way. He does not want to eat, drink or move around, and he keeps his eyes shut tightly.

Andy’s family takes Frank to visit the veterinarian of course. While they are waiting for Frank to be examined, Andy asks his mother to tell the story of how she broke her arm when she was a little girl. This is obviously a story Andy has heard before. As his mom is telling the story, Grandma and Aunt Cookie add their corrections and perspective to the tale. Andy bends down close to Frank’s ear, whispering for him to listen carefully.

We learn how Andy’s mother felt scared and embarrassed about breaking her arm. Aunt Cookie was ashamed she had made fun of her sister. Grandma felt badly because she did not recognize right away that her child’s arm was broken.


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Then it is Frank’s turn to visit the doctor. A great scene follows where the vet listens to the symptoms and treats Frank even though the cat cannot tell the vet what happened and where he hurts.

The illustrations enable a young child to follow the story text very closely. As with most children’s stories, the ending is a happy one, with both Frank and Mom recovering from their injuries.

Two things are unique about this particular book. One is the way the author deals with the feelings surrounding an event such as this. Accidents do occur where adults do not realize the extent of the injuries until later. Accidents happen that are avoidable and unforeseen. Sometimes a person misses something special due to an injury or has to compensate by doing things in different ways.

The second special feature of Ms. Perkins’ story is her attention to the small details that have you as an adult saying, "Yes, that is exactly the way it looks…feels…happens."

One of the criteria for truly good children’s storybooks is the ability to transport us as readers back to those feelings and experiences we once had as children.

To check out this book and other great stories for children, come visit the library at 725 Pekin St. or call 732-8878.

[Louella Moreland, Lincoln Public Library District]

'Epic Proportions'

[JAN. 8, 2003]  DECATUR -- Theatre 7 - Decatur's Community Theatre will present the comedy "Epic Proportions" in February at the Decatur Civic Center Theatre. Tickets for the production go on sale to the general public beginning Monday, Jan. 13, at the Decatur Civic Center Box Office.

"Epic Proportions" is set in the 1930s, when brothers Benny and Phil find themselves in the Arizona desert as extras in a huge historical epic film. Before they know it, Phil is directing the movie and Benny is starring in it. To complicate matters, they both fall in love with Louise, the assistant director of extras.

The Theatre 7 production is directed by Jayson Albright.

Cast members are Jayson Albright, Shawn Becker, Doug Bishop, Peter Churukian, Amy Hoak, Tim Haworth, Alison Logan and Matt Tucker.

Performance dates and times are Feb. 7, 8, 14 and 15 at 7:30 p.m. and Feb. 9 and 16 at 2 p.m. For ticket information, call the box office, (217) 422-6161.

For more information, visit

[Theatre 7 press release]

'Ragtime' auditions

[JAN. 8, 2003]  DECATUR -- Theatre 7 - Decatur's Community Theatre will have auditions soon for the second production of its 39th season, the epic musical "Ragtime."

Cast requirements:

  • Two children: one boy and one girl. Must be small of stature. Both children sing solos and have speaking lines.
  • 40 adults, including 10-15 African-Americans

The auditions will be at the Decatur Civic Center Theater on Sunday, Jan. 19, and Monday, Jan. 20. Children 7-10 years old audition at 5 p.m. and adults at 6:30 p.m.

To try out, prepare a song two minutes in length. An accompanist will be provided. A short piece of dialogue will be provided, as well as a short dance step.

For more information about the auditions, visit

With questions, call Mike Redlinger, director. The daytime phone number is (217) 428-4315.

[Theatre 7 press release]

LCT 2003 season

[DEC. 9, 2002]  Lincoln Community Theatre is pleased to announce three productions selected for the summer of 2003.

Kicking off the 32nd season of live theater for the Lincoln community will be the hilarious musical "Nuncrackers." This fun-filled show is a continuation of the antics of the dauntless, darling nuns of Mount St. Helen's Convent who delighted Lincoln audiences in the "Nunsense" series several summers ago. Audience participation, one-liners, a rum-soaked fruitcake, dueling sugar plum fairies and dear Sister Amnesia will definitely start the summer theatrical season with humor and fun.

The July production, "Steel Magnolias," is one of our best ensemble productions. The familiar, bittersweet story touches all the emotional peaks and valleys of life in a small Southern community. From wise-cracking Truvy to unsure Annelle, the characters in this poignant play promise to touch everyone with both laughter and tears.


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Ending the season on a patriotic note, LCT's final production of the summer will be "1776," a stirring, yet humorous musical featuring a large cast representing our founding fathers. Humor abounds with fast-paced dialogue involving Ben Franklin, Henry Lee and other early congressional characters, along with catchy, patriotic music.

To kick off the holiday season, Lincoln Community Theatre is offering holiday gift certificates for season memberships for the summer 2003 season. Certificates can be mailed directly to the receiver or to the gift giver. Certificates for adult memberships are $20 each, and those for children through eighth grade are $12 each. Requests for gift certificates may be sent to LCT, Box 374, Lincoln, IL 62656. Further information is available at (217) 732-7542 or by visiting the LCT website,

[Judy Rader, LCT publicity chairman]

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Lincoln Community Theatre information

Lincoln Community Theatre's box office, phone 735-2614,  is open from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Monday through Saturday for the summer season. The office is located in the lobby of the Johnston Center for the Performing Arts on the campus of Lincoln College.

Performances of "Dearly Departed" are scheduled for July 12-20, and "The King and I" will be presented Aug. 2-10. Show times are 2 p.m. on Sundays and 8 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday.

The LCT mailing address is Lincoln Community Theatre, P.O. Box 374, Lincoln, IL  62656; e-mail:

Visit the LDC website at Pictures from past productions are included.

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