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National Geographic to Launch Landmark Geotourism Website
ALTON, IL (SWI-News.com), October 12, 2016 - Area residents are invited to celebrate the launch of a landmark geotourism website, Mississippi River MapGuide, which highlights communities, attractions and businesses, including the Bissell Mansion, all along the Mississippi River, during a special recognition program at the National Great Rivers Museum.
The event will be held at #2 Lock and Dam Way in East Alton, Ill., at 10 a.m. on Wednesday, October 19, 2016.
Local community leaders, regional and state tourism directors, federal partners and Mississippi River businesses and residents are invited to attend the launch of the Mississippi River Geotourism MapGuide a partnership project with National Geographic Maps. The landmark project has taken two and a half years to plan and execute and is a historically significant digital asset for everyone who visits or lives in the 10 states along the Mississippi River.
Over the last 18 months, people along the Mississippi River have contributed almost 2,000 nominations of communities, sites, attractions, festivals, events, and small businesses for inclusion on the website.
"We are telling the story of what's so special about the people, places and businesses along the River," said Kimberly Rea of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. "The website is now live and is a great resource to help attract visitors. They can use the website to guide them to both the popular places and to the lesser known gems that are waiting to be discovered."
The Mississippi River Connections Collaborative and the Meeting of the Rivers Foundation were among the many local partners involved in the development of the website.
This event will be held at the National Great Rivers Museum, #2 Lock and Dam Way, East Alton, IL 62024. For more information about the website launch, contact Kimberly Rea at 314-581-9056.
Rolling Lawns Farm to Host Old-Fashioned Cake Walk
EDWARDSVILLE, IL (SWI-News.com), October 12, 2016 - To celebrate The Cup's new partnership with Rolling Lawns Farm, a local family dairy farm out of Greenville, Illinois, the popular bakery will host a fun morning full of games and giveaways, Saturday, October 22.
Guests can get their photo taken with two dairy cows, sample Rolling Lawns Farm milk and participate in a traditional cake walk. One lucky winner will receive cupcakes for a year; other prizes include cupcakes, pints of milk and a tour of Rolling Lawns Farm.
"As a small business owner, it means a lot to me to be able to support other small businesses in our community - which is something I know is important to our Edwardsville customers, too," said Ericka Frank, owner of The Cup.
Festivities begin at 10 a.m. at The Cup, located at 1057 Century Dr., Edwardsville, IL 62025.
Free Veteran's Day Screening of "Thank You for Your Service"
BELLEVILLE, IL (SWI-News.com), October 2, 2016 - Operation Honor will host a free screening of the award-winning documentary, Thank You For Your Service, on Veteran's Day, Nov. 11, from 6 to 8 p.m., at Faith Family Church, in Shiloh, Illinois.
The movie screening and panel discussion kick off the No Family Left Behind Behavioral Health Conference and Connection Fair, Nov. 11-12, sponsored by Allsup.
"Nearly 25 percent of suicides in Illinois and Missouri involve a veteran," said Brian Russell, conference director and Iraq and Afghanistan veteran. According to the National Alliance on Mental Illness, three primary mental health concerns for veterans are post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), depression and traumatic brain injury.
"The need for an event like No Family Left Behind can't be overstated," said Russell. "As a community, we've got to show up, listen, and show our veterans they have not been forgotten."
According to the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), PTSD is the third most common service-connected disability among current VA disability recipients.
"PTSD can cause problems with trust, closeness and communication," said Allsup Veterans Disability Appeal Service® and VA-accredited Claims Agent Brett Buchanan. "Survivors may feel angry, detached, or worried in their relationships, and this can put enormous stress on families."
Buchanan added that veterans often have medically complex issues. In addition to PTSD and other psychiatric conditions, they may have orthopedic conditions, cancers, cardiovascular and respiratory diseases.
"There has been a 200 percent increase over the last 10 years in original VA disability claims that contain eight or more medical issues," said Buchanan. "These are not easy issues being decided. There are special laws and regulations for Gulf War illness, combat veterans, PTSD claims and total disability due to individual unemployability."
No Family Left Behind is designed to help veterans and military families connect with resources to address these and other issues and improve their quality of life. The Connection Fair features local and national organizations that provide products and services to veterans and their families, including employment, mental health services, VA disability appeals, financial planning and more.
The keynote speaker is Dr. Mark Russell, founding director of the Institute for War Injuries and Social Justice of Antioch University, featured in Thank You for Your Service.
Conference registration is $10. To register, visit the website at OperationHonor.net or call (618) 277-0232. Scholarships are available. Continuing education units are available for professional counselors and social workers.
Governor Signs Executive Order Creating New Illinois Bicentennial Commission
SPRINGFIELD, IL (SWI-News.com), September 4, 2016 - Governor Bruce Rauner has signed Executive Order 2016-11 to create the new Illinois Bicentennial Commission and the Governor's Office of the Illinois Bicentennial to lead the planning for the celebration of the state's 200th anniversary.
"The Illinois Bicentennial is an incredible opportunity to celebrate Illinois' contributions to the country and the world and plan for our next 200 years of innovation and achievements," said Governor Rauner. "I look forward to the commission's recommendations on how best to move forward to ensure that this will be a celebration to remember."
Executive Order 2016-11 creates the Governor's Office of the Illinois Bicentennial. The Bicentennial Office, with administrative support from the Governor's Office and other state agencies, will develop the strategic vision for the bicentennial celebration and work with the public and private sectors to implement that vision.
The EO also rescinds Executive Order 2014-07, dissolving the 77-member State Bicentennial Commission. In its place the EO establishes a reconstituted commission of no more than 51 members to be called the Illinois Bicentennial Commission, which will be housed within the new Bicentennial Office.
No more than 40 members may be appointed by the Governor and one member each may be appointed by the President of the Senate, the Speaker of the House, the Senate Minority Leader, the House Minority Leader, the Attorney General, the Lieutenant Governor, the Treasurer, the Comptroller, the Secretary of State, and the Mayors of Chicago and Springfield.
The Governor also announced the hiring of Stuart Layne to serve as the Illinois Bicentennial Executive Director. Stuart brings decades of experience in strategic marketing and communications, with expertise in research, branding, publicity, events and sponsor partnerships.
"We are fortunate to have Stuart Layne on board to lead the state's bicentennial efforts," said Governor Rauner. "His knowledge, experience, and creativity will allow him to develop the strategic vision for the bicentennial celebration and work with the public and private sectors to implement that vision."
IDOT Hiring Temporary Workers in Preparation of Winter Weather
SPRINGFIELD, IL (SWI-News.com), September 25, 2016 - The Illinois Department of Transportation is in the process of hiring temporary help to assist with snow-and-ice removal throughout Illinois this winter. These seasonal employees will be hired on a full-time and an on-call basis.
The department's annual "snowbird" program requires employees to promptly respond to weather situations, assisting in snow-and-ice control and working in emergency conditions at any time, including weekends, holidays and nights. Applicants must have a commercial driver's license and submit to a criminal background check. A pre-employment physical, vision testing, drug and alcohol screening also are required.
Applicants will be selected based on availability, job-related experience and qualifications. Veterans are strongly encouraged to apply. For additional information, including details on pay and the potential for benefits, please visit: www.idot.illinois.gov/about-idot/employment-opportunities/employment/index
Fourth Annual Sequins, Suits & Sneakers Gala
EAST ST. LOUIS, IL (SWI-News.com), August 28, 2016 - The Jackie Joyner-Kersee Foundation will host its Fourth Annual Sequins, Suits & Sneakers Gala at 6:00 p.m. on Thursday, October 27, 2016.
The Gala is a fun-filled event which allows you to wear your finest cocktail attire with your bling sneakers.
The year's Gala will focus on showcasing the programs and activities of the Jackie Joyner-Kersee Foundation. The Gala allows the Foundation to continue helping children and families access the tools they need to achieve their dreams.
In 2016, the Foundation served nearly 3,000 children in quality programs such as summer camp, after-school, leadership and character education programs using the Winning in Life curriculum developed by Jackie, as well as sports leagues for: wrestling, football, soccer, cheerleading, baseball, softball and basketball.
For more information, call 314-749-5606 or the Foundation Office at 618-274-5437.
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