Listen to this article

The Elliott Amvets are holding an all-you-can-eat mountain oyster fry from noon to 4 p.m. on the fourth Saturday of each month.

The Saybrook American Legion Post #427 will host a chicken and fish fry on Jan. 10, Jan.  24, Feb. 14, Feb. 28, March 13 and March 27. The menu includes chicken, whole catfish, all-you-can-eat walleye, baked potato, baked beans, cole slaw and a drink. Serving starts at 4:30 p.m. and continues until 6:30.

The Saybrook Sons of the American Legion will host a spaghetti supper from 5 to 7 p.m. on the first Friday of each month through April at the Saybrook American Legion Hall. The cost for the meal is $7. Served will be spaghetti, garlic bread and salad.

A Senior Fit exercise program is available at the Paxton Church of Christ, 400 W. Ottawa Road, every Monday morning at 9. The program is especially designed to help seniors with strength and balance for daily living. The low-impact exercises can all be done while sitting in a chair. All area seniors are invited to attend.

The Foosland Sportsman’s Club will host splatterboard shooting events on Feb. 9 and March 8. Breakfast, cooked to order, starts at 6 a.m., with the splatterboard shoot starting at 8. An Annie tournament begins around 10 a.m. The events are open to the public. For more information, people can visit www.fooslandsportsmensclub.com.

The Corn Belt Shrine Club, based in Gibson City, will be serving ribeye steak sandwiches with chips and a drink for $9 each from 5 to 7:30 p.m. on Thursdays at Jay’s Place at 115 N. Sangamon Ave. in downtown Gibson City. Also, each evening the Gibson City-Melvin-Sibley High School Booster Club will be selling 50/50 raffle tickets.

The Elliott Amvets will hold Family Night meals on the first Friday of each month: Jan. 3, Feb. 7, March 6, April 3 and May 1. The meal includes fish and chicken plus two sides for $10. Also available for purchase are $1 sodas, $2 beers and $4.50 mixed drinks.

Cheney’s Grove Township Library in Saybrook is open from 10 a.m. to noon and from 1 to 5 p.m. each Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday, from 2 to 5 p.m. each Thursday and from 9 a.m. to noon each Saturday.

The Ford County Historical Society’s Water Tower Museum is closed until Saturday,  April 18, but visits or tours of the museum may still be scheduled by calling 217-379-4111 or 217-722-2227.  

The PBL Area Community Food Pantry is open from 9 to 11:30 a.m. Thursdays and Saturdays at 785 S. Railroad Ave. in Paxton. The food pantry serves residents of the Paxton, Buckley and Loda communities.

TOPS (Take Off Pounds Sensibly) meets from 5:30 to 7 p.m. each Monday at the United Methodist Church, 219 S. Margaret St., Piper City.  Visitors are always welcome to attend — including preteens, teens and adults, both male and female. Their first meeting is free. TOPS is a nonprofit, weight-loss support and wellness education organization with thousands of associate chapters in the U.S. and Canada. Members learn about nutrition, portion control, food planning, exercise, motivation and more at the weekly meetings.   For details, people can call Brenda Hemp at 815-954-8835, visit www.tops.org or call TOPS headquarters at 800-932-8677.

MOPS (Mothers of Preschoolers) meets from 9 to 11 a.m. on the third Friday of each month at the Paxton Church of the Nazarene, 302 W. State St., Paxton. Each meeting includes breakfast, crafts and discussion on relevant topics, with childcare provided. The group is open to mothers of all experience levels. Annual dues cost $31.95. To register, people can visit www.mops.org and type in code “KSIZ.” For more information, people can contact Julie Foster at 618-304-4092.

TOPS (Take Off Pounds Sensibly) meets from 5 to 6 p.m. each Monday at the United Methodist Church, located at 219 S. Margaret St. in Piper City. The public is welcome to come and visit; the first meeting is free. TOPS is a nonprofit weight-loss support, education and wellness organization. For more information, people can call Brenda Hemp at 815-954-8835, visit www.tops.org or call TOPS headquarters at 800-932-8677.

TOPS (Take Off Pounds Sensibly) meets from 5 to 6:30 p.m. each Monday at the First Lutheran Church, located at 301 S. College St. in Paxton. The public is welcome to come and visit; the first meeting is free. TOPS is a nonprofit weight-loss support, education and wellness organization. For details, people can call Virginia Lafray at 815-668-1728 or visit www.tops.org.

Fisher Odd Fellows Lodge No. 704 meets at 7:30 p.m. on the fourth Tuesday of each month at the Odd Fellow Hall, located at the corner of Sangamon and Third streets in downtown Fisher. Oddfellowship is a service organization dedicated to the betterment of mankind. Anyone interested in membership information may call 217-897-6544 or stop in at the Free Book Exchange, where pamphlets are available.

Celebrate Recovery sessions are being held at 6:15 p.m. on Thursdays at New Beginnings Christian Fellowship, 107 S. Sangamon Ave., Gibson City. Food and fellowship will be offered from 6:15 to 6:45 p.m., followed by worship from 6:45 to 7 p.m., a lesson from 7 to 7:30 p.m. and “open share” groups from 7:30 to 8 p.m. Childcare is available. For more information, call 217-784-8673.

A GriefShare support group meeting and seminar is held at 6:30 p.m. each Tuesday at the Gibson City Bible Church, 309 N. Illinois 47, Gibson City. GriefShare features nationally recognized experts on grief and recovery topics.  Seminar sessions include “Is This Normal?,” “The Challenges of Grief,” “Grief and Your Relationships,” “Why?” and “Guilt and Anger.” For more information or to register, people can call Bonnie at 217-784-5702 or email gcbiblec@gibsoncitybible.org.

Yarns and Threads, a group of people who enjoy knitting, crocheting, quilting, embroidery and all other sewing crafts, meets  on Tuesdays from 6:30 to 8:15 p.m. at the Paxton Carnegie Library, 254 S. Market St., Paxton.

The Gibson Area Chamber of Commerce’s next general meeting will be at noon Thursday, Jan. 2, at The Sand Trap in Gibson City. A representative from Rhino Ag in Gibson City will be speaking about the company that it recently bought. Reservations for the meeting were requested by 5 p.m. Dec. 31 by contacting Jackie Rusk at jackie.rusk@gapho.org or 217-784-2249.

The Ford County Fair Association will hold its annual meeting at 8 a.m. Saturday, Jan. 4, at the Arcade Restaurant, 132 N. Market St., Paxton. The election of board members and officers will take place. In addition, plans for the Ford County Fair in 2020 will be discussed. The public is invited to attend.

The Piper City Public Library will host a “Finance 101” workshop at 10 a.m. Saturday, Jan. 4. The free, hour-long workshop is provided by the Office of the Illinois Comptroller. Attendees will relearn the basics of budgeting and credit by managing their personal finances, loans, how to pay off debt, and the difference between a credit report and a credit score. For more information, people can call the library at 815-686-9234.

The Tri-County Players will hold auditions for their next play, “The Last Séance” by Herb Hassler, from 10 a.m. to noon Saturday, Jan. 4, at the Market Street Theatre, 120 N. Market St., Paxton. Three men and six women are needed to fill roles. To audition, people need to read excerpts from the play. Persons selected for the cast will begin practicing on Monday, Jan. 6. Practices will be held Mondays, Tuesdays and Thursdays from 6:30 to 8 p.m. The show will be performed Feb. 14-16 and Feb. 21-23. For more information or to set up a different time to audition, people can contact Tammy Belanger at 217-766-1174.  

A benefit for Lyle Adkins, who is currently on the liver transplant list through Northwestern Memorial Hospital in Chicago, will be held from 4 to 10 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 11, at the Roberts Gym on Weldon Street in Roberts. Dinner will be served from 4 to 7 p.m. for a donation of $10 per plate for adults and $5 per plate for children. Donations for the meal also cover the night’s entertainment. Attendees have the option to reserve a table seating up to eight people for $200. A silent auction will be held from 4 to 8 p.m., and 50/50 drawings will be held from 4 to 9 p.m. A live auction begins at 7 p.m. At 9 p.m., winners of raffle drawings and the silent auction will be announced. For more information about the event, to reserve a table at the event or to donate toward the event, people can email parrishpack5@yahoo.com or call or send a text to 217-680-1382. Adkins was diagnosed in June 2017 with NASH (nonalcoholic fatty liver disease), which is the second-leading cause of liver transplants in the U.S.  He has been in and out of the hospital consistently since the beginning of 2019 and as of August has been out of work. The benefit will help to ease some of the financial burdens associated with the liver transplant process and beyond.

The Piper City Public Library will host a presentation on pollinator planning from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m. Wednesday, Jan. 15. Nancy Stamm will be providing the program through the Ford-Iroquois unit of the University of Illinois Extension Master Gardeners. Attendees will learn about the inclusion of pollinators in their gardening plans. For more information, people can call the library at 815-686-9234.

St. John’s Lutheran School in Buckley will host its annual chicken dinner, auction and carnival on Sunday, Feb. 16. The carnival and auction begin at 3:30 p.m., followed by the chicken dinner from 4 to 7 p.m. Dinner tickets cost $10. Dine-in and carryout orders will be available. The school is located at 206 Main St. For more information, people can call the school’s office at 217-394-2422.