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‘Following the Information Trail’

Workshops will lead in research
of properties in Lincoln

[SEPT. 18, 2001]  Lincoln’s Historic Homes and Buildings Committee had its regular meeting on Sept. 17 in the office of Mayor Beth Davis.

The committee discussed the development of an inventory form to assist owners of historic properties in researching their home or building.

The committee also began preparations for a series of workshops at the Lincoln Public Library entitled "Following the Information Trail." These workshops will educate participants on the different sources of information available for research of properties in Lincoln. The dates and times of these workshops will be announced at a later date.

The next meeting of the committee is Oct. 15 at 5 p.m. at City Hall.

[News release]

MKS Jewelers celebrates
two decades in downtown Lincoln

[SEPT. 13, 2001]  With balloons, extended hours, door prizes and storewide discounts, MKS Jewelers is celebrating its 20th anniversary this week, Sept. 7-15. Through the 15th there is a "Name That Stone" contest, and everything in the store not already on sale is 20 percent off.

A window display features the 20 different stones to be identified, with prizes for five, 10 and 20 correct. On the opening weekend the store featured a special selection of jewelry brought in for the occasion and sold at half price. Melody Kay Shew, whose initials gave the store its name, said the response so far has been excellent. Visitors have included longtime customers and a tour bus of people from Scotland.


MKS Jewelers sells "anything from sterling to 14 carat," according to Shew, the manager and co-owner. In addition to jewelry, stock includes a broad selection of gift items, such as candles, coasters, clocks, frames and seasonal items. For 10 years MKS has been a member of Retailers Jewelers Organization, a buying group which enables Shew to carry lines which would otherwise not be available to a small store. In addition to buying at the RJO show in Des Moines, she makes selections at the Chicago Gift Show in July and through company sales representatives. She was told she is the only outlet in central and northern Illinois except the Art Institute to offer Ortak silver from Scotland.

Shew’s philosophy is customer-centered. "We try to carry what people are asking for," she said. "I’m selling products that I would be proud to wear myself." She believes in being honest with customers, offering a quality product, backing it up and offering a range of prices to fit community needs.

Services offered by MKS include both bridal and gift registry (called the "Wish List"), jewelry and watch repair, remounts of stones, ear piercing and class rings. Fred Schroeder of Morton, one of two bench jewelers to whom MKS sends repairs, studied with Shew’s mentor Jim Williams.

During its 20 years of existence MKS Jewelers has occupied three locations, largely because of a disastrous fire. Shew and her husband Allen bought the business on Sept. 8, 1981, from family friend Dorothy Williams after the sudden death of her husband, James. Melody Shew had previously worked part-time seven years for Jim Williams, who taught her to engrave and to do some jewelry repairs. Williams had, in turn, bought the business from Opal and the late Jacob Buttell.

MKS Jewelers was originally located in the Miller Building on the corner of Kickapoo and Pekin. On Feb. 24, 1982, a phone call in the middle of the night alerted the Shews to a fire at the Miller Building. Melody Shew remembers standing in the bitter cold, watching the fire and the water freezing as it dripped. In the store the floor was eaten away and only a wall added by the Williamses prevented the safe from falling through to the flooded basement.


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Though the stock outside the safe was all destroyed, it was stored in the State Bank West basement vault until the pieces could be identified for insurance purposes. "The whole bank smelled of smoke," Shew said. "Nothing was melted; it was all water damage," she added. Firemen noticed that Timex watches in a display near the door were all still ticking. Two days later, however, they weren’t. Display cases from the fire site were reconditioned and are still in use.

After the fire the store was relocated to 125 S. Kickapoo for two years and in April 1984 to its current location at 614 Broadway. With help from family and friends, the Shews renovated the former Schoen’s Shoe Store in one month. Allen Shew built the wall partitions at Chestervale Grain Elevator, which he manages.


In 1997, after purchasing the store from Landauer’s, the Shews extended the rear of the showroom about 12 feet and built new offices, work stations and a repair center at the back of the store. At that time they repainted, laid new carpet, and added a new furnace and air conditioning.

Since opening the store, Melody Shew has studied diamonds and jewelry retailing through correspondence courses offered by the Gemological Institute of America. She belongs to the Illinois Jewelers Association, and she and Angela Getchel, her daughter and assistant manager, attend educational seminars each year.

The store, which had three employees besides Shew when it opened in 1981, now has five: Getchel, Shew’s sister Kenda Colby, Nancy Yeazle, Lois Laughlin and Lori Farwell. Getchel is in charge of keeping a computer record of the stock.

Shew belongs to the local chamber of commerce and was on the first Main Street Lincoln board of directors. Following a tradition from Princeton, Ill., her former home, she instigated the Grand March at the Logan County Courthouse for LCHS prom goers and took over the project last year when Main Street ceased sponsorship.

"I have seen a lot of stores come and go," says Shew. "Sometimes it amazes me that we’re still here. I really feel like the Lord has been a part of this from Day 1. He’s seen us through so many trials."

[Lynn Shearer Spellman]


A local woman, Carol Runyon,
uses creativity in her business

[SEPT. 7, 2001]  Recently a local businesswoman, Carol Runyon, was pleasantly surprised to learn that one of her ideas had been published by an international scrapbooking company, Creative Memories. Her layout idea is now part of a Crop Talk® titled "Beautiful Beginnings" for Creative Memories consultants to purchase.

Crop Talk® lessons are used as a tool for consultants to use in workshops for their customers. Most lessons are in the form of a four-page handout, with the consultant having a special instruction guide to aid him or her (yes, men are Creative Memories consultants, too) in preparation. The 5- to 15-minute lessons are used to educate and motivate customers. 

The idea Runyon suggested has an interesting origin and history.


Over a year ago, Carol and Joe were going through old photos and photo albums and were saddened to find that the album Joe and his late wife, Darla, had purchased from their wedding photographer was literally falling apart. This album, over 40 years old, held the professional photographs from their wedding.

Much has been learned about safe photo storage and preservation in the past 40 years. Carol and Joe both realized that the precious photos needed to be "rescued" from this unsafe environment.

So they removed the photos and documented, on the backs with a photo-safe marker, the names of the people featured in these photos. (There was no documentation in the album other than the names of the people who attended, on a sign- in page, and the page that gave the information about the wedding party.) Most photos were of family members, and fortunately Joe knew who these people were. Often, this type of information is lost because photos are not documented, and when the albums are passed down to future generations, they hold little value to the family members who inherit them.

The photos were then placed in portrait sleeves in a Creative Memories album for safekeeping.



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When improved photo paper came out through Creative Memories, the Runyons decided to make a copy of each photo and mount them in albums for each of the five now-adult offspring from that union. The albums were nearly finished when Carol received the invitation that Darla’s mother, Margaret Osborn, had saved these many years.

Copies of the wedding invitation really belonged in the album, and at the front of the album, at least in Carol's opinion. Since the first page had already been completed, this created a challenge. In fact, all five of the albums were completed except for the documentation.

So the idea of an "overlay" became the solution to this dilemma. When friends, customers and family members saw the albums, they encouraged Carol to submit the idea to her company. When Carol called the corporate headquarters to ask if they would be interested in the idea, they said "Yes!" and directed her to the appropriate contact person.


More information about her business as an independent Creative Memories consultant can be obtained by calling Carol Runyon at (217) 732-9480 or (888) 400-9480, or by sending e-mail to her at carol4memories@juno.com .

Also, more information about Creative Memories, now an international company, can be obtained by contacting Creative Memories at (800) 468-9335 or visiting www.creative-memories.com.

Also see http://albums.photopoint.com/j/

[News release]


Newly renovated Student
Services Building at LCCS

[AUG. 30, 2001]  Lincoln Christian College and Seminary hosted an open house Tuesday celebrating the completely renovated Student Services Building.

[Click here for pictures of student center]

The structure was built in the 1950s and over the years has been the home of the maintenance shop, a print shop, the mailroom and bookstore. During this summer, the building underwent a total face-lift with many exciting changes. The building now houses the Student Development and Admissions Departments, "Mr. Books" bookstore, and the newly-created student center.

A plaque was presented to Professor Tom Ewald and was hung in the new building. The plaque honors Professor Ewald for 28 years of service as the dean of students. He held that position for both the seminary and the college for many years. He is still the dean of students for the seminary and professor of pastoral care and counseling.

The student center occupies the former garage-maintenance end of the building. There is a TV viewing area, a snack bar and a large room where students can relax and have fun. Also, game tables, couches, booths and a stage for live entertainment are in this area. The center has a garage motif, with old campus signs on the walls as well as old signs from the community. The concrete floor is stained and stenciled. Contractors involved in this part of the renovations include Roger Webster’s Construction, Fitzpatrick Electric, Quality Glass, Simonson Painting and Hundley Controls.


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Mr. Books, the new name of the LCCS bookstore, has all new bookcases, wall units, carpet and tile. It has been enlarged, redesigned and repainted.

The Student Development and Admissions Departments have a reception area, six new offices, an office for the admission counselors, a workroom and a conference room. Contractors involved in this part of the building include Roger Webster's Construction, Fitzpatrick Electric, Patterson Drywall, Quality Glass, Barr Painting, and Hundley Controls.

[News release]


The Chamber Report

The Chamber of Commerce is a catalyst for community progress, bringing business and professional people together to work for the common good of Lincoln and Logan County.

Bobbi Abbott, Executive Director

Lincoln/Logan County Chamber of Commerce

303 S. Kickapoo St.

Lincoln, IL 62656

(217) 735-2385


Honors & Awards

Main Street Corner News

Main Street Lincoln calendar for September

Wednesday, Sept. 5 — Executive board at office, 4 p.m.

Tuesday, Sept. 11 — Festival of Trees Committee at Farm Bureau, 8:30 a.m.

Wednesday, Sept. 12 — Main Street Lincoln board at office, 5:30 p.m.

Monday, Sept. 17 — Design Committee at office, 6:30 p.m.

Wednesday, Sept. 19 — Looking for Lincoln, Union Planters Conference Room, 7 p.m.

Monday, Sept. 24 — Economic Restructuring Committee, Pegram Room at Lincoln Public Library, 5:30 p.m.

Main Street Lincoln

303 S. Kickapoo

Lincoln, IL 62656

Phone: (217) 732-2929

Fax: (217) 735-9205

E-mail: manager@mainstreetlincoln.com


Job Hunt

Lincolndailynews.com makes it easy to look for a job in the Logan County area.

Employers, you can list available jobs by e-mailing ldn@lincolndailynews.com. Each job listing costs $10 the first week, $20 for eight days to three months. There is a limit of 75 words per announcement.

Route Delivery Driver — Join the fast-growing bottled water industry with this excellent opportunity. Must have a CDL Class B or higher and a desire to serve your customers. Excellent commission-based earnings with a daily guarantee. Benefits include two weeks vacation, 401(K) retirement plan after one year, health insurance. Apply in person to Puritan Springs Water, 1709 N. Kickapoo St., Lincoln, IL 62656.

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