Friday, July 13, 2007

Since you ask . . .

A longtime reader writes:
Have all the bloggers in Carbondale gone on vacation or WHAT?! Everyday I check to see if you or Peter have posted anything new -- nada! I hope things are well, I know you are writing a Blook and that Peter was considering a move to Oregon or something granola like that. How's the king? I see he's going after that liquor commission again....
Well here's the skinny, Minnie: Peter the Great is moving in two weeks to his favorite college town in Oregon, where there are more people like him, and more opportunity to do great things.
In his latest post he tells us he's been summoned to serve jury duty for his last two weeks in town. He says he has two or three more posts in him before leaves, so look for them.

I'm planning a little going-away party for PG at Pinch Penny Pub next week. The Beer Philosopher will be there (He and Peter have never met! And maybe some other Bloggers and Bloggees will want to come slap Peter on the back (or in the face, if you're Sheila Simon, ha ha).

I spoke to Sheila, two-three weeks ago, outside of Tres, and she was planning a bicycle trip in Canada with her husband Perry, to mark the 20th anniversary of their marriage. She also received an "All Year 'Round" Trophy from Mayor Cole at Bike 2 Work Day in May, and will work with the "Spokes Folks" group to improve the bike lane situtation in The Dale. . . .

Roxanne Conley has stepped down from Main Street, a new Exec Direct is Meghan Cole (no relation to you-know-who) .
Roxanne has moved on from the position because she believes "change is good" and that this change simultaneously encourages growth within the organization. Mrs. Conley added, “Of course there will be a transition period and I encourage everyone downtown to be helpful during that time.” Mrs. Conley has not yet accepted another position, but will be actively searching for a suitable position soon.
Makes you wonder what the reason for her resignation. Certainly not dissatisfaction of the Board of Directors.

As for Ms. Cole, she

impressed the Main Street board with her enthusiastic attitude, strong skill set and valuable experience during their initial meetings. She comes into the job with a strong knowledge of downtown revitalization and improvement gained during a brief tenure with the downtown association in Decatur, Illinois.
Since Roxanne will be searching for a suitable position soon, the Main Street press release offers glowing testimonial to what a great job she did. (She'll probably have another position before my blook is published. ;-))

"King" Cole is doing his thing. On the political side, he took a lump from the School Board, which failed to act in time to sell a piece of land.... And his liquor commish request, and salary increase for the next term mayor are on the table at the next City Council meeting. On the personal side, besides his surprise date with the winner of the Marry the Mayor contest, I hear he's dated other women from that deal. Women who have contacted him directly.... He was seen last week having dinner with a beautiful grad student at a local restaurant. Probably one of his MySpace friends. And someone at The Hound told me of another, so . . . he may yet be married by the end of the year, as he resolved to do in January.

My own professional life is very busy, or bussy, lately. Having fun with the new blog, posting photos of customers and brief blurbs about them. Planning to revisit "The Great Bus Stop Debate." The City Council dropped the ball on June 19 by turning its back on the plight of so many people. Someone in the City should be doing more to address this problem than voting "No" to an imaginative and viable solution. At least Wissmann and Jack tried to do the right thing. But it turns out that Pohlmann, Haynes and McDaniel are anti-bus(iness) racists. Safety in that "bad neighborhood" was Pohlmann's main concern? Isn't that racist? The other two may not be racist, but just wrong, as will be shown in Graydog's Blog.

In the world of Creative Media, the sand painting by Vic DeGraff of the old Stage Company building is complete. And Larry Weatherford has found a way to make sand paper prints -- which Victor has touched up with actual brick from the building.... To be sold as a fund raiser for the Stage Company.

And work has begun for a new Between the Rivers compilation cd, this time Voices.

Let's see, what else? No Troy Hudson Basketball Tournament this year. I guess there was a fight or something at the last one, and he wanted to avoid liability. Something like that. His mom has opened a shoe store in the Campus Shopping Center.

Oh, and the other night I bumped into TJ Silas, former CCHS b'ball standout, turned rap producer/impresario. We talked about the benefit for the old Tuscan Lodge building currently on its last legs. He's currently producing a show at Eurma Hayes.

And, I hear that Bethany Krajelis has started work at the Southern Illinoisan. A fresh grad from the Public Affairs Reporting Master's Program in Springfield. Looks like another step in The Illusion's turn around.

The Newell House renewal continues. And owner Dan Terry is opening a new bar up the street where Herald Printing used to be, called Maxum's selling expensive, exotic drinks, in a sumptuous atmosphere. (Unlike the "sump pump" atmosphere at Greyhound. ha ha.)

Another real estate wiz, Tom Egert, sold the WDBX Community Thrift Store building to a plumbing or electrical outfit, I hear. He's buying the building next door to WDBX in order to expand the station.

The stores on Jackson St. are thriving: Longbranch, Global Gourmet, Arthur Agency, Town Square Market. Behind The Branch, Rosetta Books has merged with the Tropicana. The back of the store opens onto Washington St. across the street from where I spend mornings at The Hound, me and Charley chatting on the sidewalk in front of our storefronts, looking at the ugliness across the street. Tom Egert says he's gonna clean out the storage in back of the Tropic-etta to open it up for business. The Big Muddy Independent Media Center has possibilities, as well. Auntie's Wings? Another one just bit the dust there. I can't count how many failed restaurants have been at that location. I've spoken to some neighbors about closing the 200 Block of N. Washington Street for a STREET FAIR, so let's see what develops. .... Perhaps a WASHINGTON STREET BASKETBALL TOURNAMENT AND RAP FESTIVAL TO BENEFIT THE TUSCAN LODGE!

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