The Saybrook American Legion Post #427 will host a chicken and fish fry on Nov. 15. Dec. 13, 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, cole slaw and a drink. Serving starts at 4:30 p.m. and continues until 6:30.
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 Nov. 10, Dec. 8, Jan. 1, 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: Nov. 1, Dec. 6, 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 open each Saturday from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. The museum, which specializes in Ford County history, is located at 135 S. Market St. behind Paxton City Hall. There is no charge for admission to the museum. For more information or to schedule visits at other times, people can call 217-379-4111 or 217-722-2227.
Loda Township Library board meetings will be held at 5 p.m. in the library’s main reading room on Nov. 18 in 2019 and on Jan. 21 and March 16 in 2020. For more information, people can call the library at 386-2783.
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.
A potluck dinner for persons over age 55 is held on the fourth Thursday of each month through October in Gibson City. It is held in the Senior Center at the South Park. Chicken and a cold drink are provided. Attendees are asked to bring a dish to share and their own dinnerware.
The Paxton Carnegie Library’s board of trustees will meet at the library at 7 p.m. Nov. 6 and Dec. 4.
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.
The fall sessions of DivorceCare will be held at 6:30 p.m. each Monday through Dec. 16 at the Gibson City Bible Church, 309 N. Illinois 47, Gibson City. DivorceCare is a weekly seminar and support group that helps people heal from the hurt of a separation or divorce. Participants learn practical information and gain hope for the future. For more information, people can call 217-784-5702 or visit www.divorcecare.com or www.gibsoncitybible.org.
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 firstname.lastname@example.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 Loda American Legion post is hosting a fish/chicken fry from 4:30 to 7:30 p.m. Friday, Oct. 25, at the Legion Hall at 107 E. Adams St., Loda. The menu includes pollack fish/chicken, livers, gizzards, french fries, cole slaw, baked beans, green beans, potato salad and tarter sauce. The all-you-can-eat meal costs $10, with children under age 8 eating for free.
The ACT Theatre Company will present “Terror in Transylvania,” an interactive night of mystery filled with classic Halloween characters, at 6:30 p.m. Friday, Oct. 25, at Railside Golf Club, 120 W. 19th St., Gibson City. Tickets, which cost $30 each, include a full buffet dinner and an evening of interactive entertainment. Guests are encouraged to choose a character category and dress the part. Details on characters, dressing up and making reservations can be found on the ACT Theatre Company’s Facebook page or by calling 217-377-0214 or emailing email@example.com. Seating is limited, and advance reservations are required. The show is rated PG-13, as some material may be inappropriate for children under age 13.
The Tri-County Players will present the comedy “Kitchen Witches,” by Caroline Smith, on Oct. 25-27 and Nov. 1-3 at the Market Street Theatre in downtown Paxton. Shows times are 7 p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays and 2 p.m. on Sundays. Tickets cost $12 and can be reserved by calling 217-379-7028; walk-ins are always welcome. Isobel Lomax (portrayed by Sherry Janowski) and Dolly Biddle (Sherilyn McIntyre) are two “mature” cable-access cooking show hostesses who have hated each other for 30 years, ever since Larry Biddle dated one and married the other. When circumstances put them together on a TV show called “The Kitchen Witches,” the insults are flung harder than the food. Dolly’s long-suffering TV-producer/director son, Stephen Biddle (Brandon Irish), Don the stage manager (Tom Janowski) and Rob the stage hand (Michael Soltis) try to keep them on track, but as long as Dolly’s dressing room is one inch closer to the set than Isobel’s, it’s a losing battle, and the show becomes a ratings smash as Dolly and Isobel top both Martha Stewart and Jerry Springer. The show is directed by Tammy Belanger.
The Paxton IGA is hosting a cookout from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 26, in its parking lot to help raise funds for the Paxton Masonic Lodge. The IGA is located at 144 W. Pells St. in Paxton. Ribeye steak sandwiches, chips and soda pop will be for sale.
The 13th annual Thrill the World Piper City event will take place at 5 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 26, in downtown Piper City. Zombies will take to the street in Piper City to perform Michael Jackson’s “Thriller” dance in unison. There is no cost to participate, but donations will be accepted toward the Small Cell Lung Cancer Program at the Cancer Research Center in Chicago. There will be a crash course to learn the “Thriller” dance at 12:30 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 26, at Ne’s Place in Piper City. There will be time to practice before the event. For more information, people are asked to contact Lynn Berryhill at 815-644-5811 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
The First Presbyterian Church, located at 401 N. Church St. in Gibson City, will hold its 148th birthday celebration and fall soup supper from 5 to 7 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 27. The event is free and open to the public. The meal includes four kinds of soup, bread, crackers, relish trays, birthday cake and beverages. There will be door prizes.
St. Mary Catholic Church’s Council of Catholic Women is inviting the public to watch the movie “Unplanned” at 2 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 27, at the St. Mary & St. Joseph Parish Center in Paxton. Refreshments will be served. October is Respect Life Month.
The Paxton Park District’s annual Halloween Parade is scheduled for 4 to 4:30 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 31, on Market Street in downtown Paxton. Participating children and their parents are asked to line up at the corner of Market and Orleans streets before the parade begins, making its way north of Market Street to the firehouse. At the firehouse, goodie bags will be given to the kids. Children can then trick-or-treat at participating businesses along Market Street.
The Little Achievers Academy Preschool, located in the American Lutheran Church in Gibson City, will host a holiday shopping bazaar from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 2. The bazaar will feature more than 20 booths selling everything from handmade items, personalized crafts and home decor to boutique clothing, Pink Zebra, Usborne Books, Scentsy, Rodan & Fields, County Suds, Party Lite and more. The first 25 shoppers receive a free gift. Door prizes and raffles will be offered, as well. People who bring three or more canned-goods items will be entered into a drawing for a free chance to win one of the many raffle prizes that day. A barbecue lunch including chips, drink and dessert will be sold for $6 from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Carryout meals are also available. For more information or to see full list of vendors and prizes, people can visit the Little Achievers Academy Preschool’s Facebook page.
The Paxton IGA is hosting a cookout from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 2, in its parking lot to help raise funds for the GAB Women’s Group. The IGA is located at 144 W. Pells St. in Paxton. Pork chop sandwiches, chips and soda pop will be for sale.
The Neverly Brothers will perform in concert at 7 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 2, at the Melvin Community Hall. Tickets cost $10, with children ages 12 and under entering for free. Doors open at 5:30 p.m. with food available for purchase from the Melvin Park Committee. For more information, people can call Norm Schall at 217-388-2853.
Iroquois Memorial Hospice’s annual brunch and silent auction is set for 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 3, in the cafeteria at Watseka Community High School, 138 Belmont Ave., Watseka. Monies raised go to the Iroquois Memorial Hospice Memorial Fund, which helps finance patients’ needs not covered by other resources. The menu includes biscuits and sausage gravy, egg casserole, fruit, juice, coffee and milk. Free-will donations will be accepted, and carryout containers will be available. There will be an opening ceremony with an invocation, the American Legion Post 23 presenting the colors and the singing of the national anthem.
A holiday craft sale is set for 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 2, and Sunday, Nov. 3, at the Kruse Banquet Center, 207 N. Lawrence St., Gibson City. All items are hand-crafted by local crafters. Items available for purchase include scarves, hats, wreaths, jewelry, baked goods, afghans, baby gifts, outdoor wood decorations, tree skirts, hand-crafted wood items and hair ornaments. Lunch will be served by Mandy’s Kitchen. There is free admission and free parking.
The American Legion Auxiliary of Sibley (Martin H. Suntkin Unit #244) will meet at 7 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 5, at the Sullivant Township Hall. Prospective members are welcome to attend.
The Gibson City Lions Club is having a membership drive at 5:30 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 7, at the Moyer District Library, 618 S. Sangamon Ave., Gibson City. The nonprofit organization’s membership is aging and it needs new members.
The Osman Immanuel Lutheran Church will be holding a benefit soup supper as a fundraiser for Megan Thompson of Monticello from 4:30 to 7 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 9, in the church’s fellowship hall. Thompson has been diagnosed with metastatic breast cancer at age 32. The cancer has spread to her liver and bones, and her last treatment regimen failed, so she is presently looking for experimental treatments. The menu for the supper will include chili, oyster soup, potato soup, sandwiches, desserts, pie and drinks. A free-will offering will be taken. People interested in donating toward the benefit are asked to make a check payable to Immanuel Lutheran Church of Osman and mail it to Immanuel Lutheran Church, 942 Grape Ave., Fisher IL 61843. The church is located between Mansfield and Bellflower.
The Paxton IGA is hosting a cookout from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 9, in its parking lot to help raise funds for the Toys for Tots program. The IGA is located at 144 W. Pells St. in Paxton. Ribeye steak sandwiches, chips and soda pop will be for sale.
The Paxton IGA is hosting a cookout from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 16, in its parking lot to help raise funds for the Gibson City Masonic Lodge. The IGA is located at 144 W. Pells St. in Paxton. Pork chop sandwiches, chips and soda pop will be for sale.
The Ford-Iroquois 4-H Foundation’s 10th annual Ford-Iroquois 4-H Auction will be held Sunday, Nov. 17, at St Paul’s Lutheran School, 108 W. Woodworth Road, Milford. A complementary pork-burger meal will begin at 1:30 p.m., and the live auction begins at 2 p.m. In 2008, the State 4-H Office mandated a $20 participation fee to join 4-H. The foundation felt this would be a hardship on families; therefore, the auction was created. The proceeds from the auction are used to cover participation fees totaling more than $13,000 for all 4-H’ers in Ford and Iroquois counties. Any additional funds raised support Ford and Iroquois counties’ 4-H programs in general, covering the cost of project manuals, awards, camp and high school senior scholarships and other items as needed. As in past years, the auction will offer a wide variety of items for sale — from seed corn to tea rings, craft items to tools, golf for four with a cart and even weekend getaways. Items for sale are donated by local businesses, individuals and 4-H clubs. Sale items will be posted on the “Ford & Iroquois Counties 4-H” Facebook page. To make a donation to the auction or for more information, people can ccontact Nita Dubble at 815-867-6037 or Sharleen Finegan at 815-383-9891. Monetary donations can be sent to: Ford-Iroquois 4-H Foundation, P.O. Box 163, Onarga, IL 60955. Please note “4-H auction” on the check.
The Ford County Historical Society’s next meeting will be at 7 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 21, at the Water Tower Museum, located at 135 S. Market St. just behind Paxton City Hall. At the meeting, the group will look at “Historic Homes of Paxton: A Self-Guided Walking Tour.” The group will also discuss whether to create other mini-tours for some different parts of Paxton. Attendees are asked to bring suggestions for interesting corners, intersections, or neighborhoods that might be featured on mini-maps of that area. The meeting is free to attend and open to the public.
The Paxton IGA is hosting a cookout from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 23, in its parking lot to help raise funds for Missions R Us. The IGA is located at 144 W. Pells St. in Paxton. Ribeye steak sandwiches, chips and soda pop will be for sale.
Gibson City’s 25th annual Lighted Christmas Parade, sponsored by the Gibson Area Chamber of Commerce, is set for 6:30 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 23, with the theme “silver bells.” Entries in the parade will line up at two locations on the city’s south side starting at 5 p.m. — pre-lit floats in the parking lot of GAH Elite and custom floats in the parking lot of County Market. The parade will step off at 6:30 p.m. and head west on Illinois 9 before turning north onto Sangamon Avenue and heading downtown until 10th Street, when entries may pull off at any time after that. Events downtown begin at 4 p.m. There will be food and craft vendors, carolers singing Christmas carols and fires in fire pits. A live broadcast of the parade can be heard downtown over the city’s newly installed speaker system, as well as over local radio station 106.3-WGCY Radio. This year’s parade is anticipated to have more than 50 entries. Following the parade, Santa Claus will visit with children inside Hood’s Ace Hardware, 119 N. Sangamon Ave. Downtown stores will also be decorated for the Christmas season.
PRIDE in Paxton’s annual tree-lighting ceremony is scheduled for 7 p.m. Friday, Nov. 29, at the intersection of Market and State streets in downtown Paxton. During the event, Paxton’s Christmas tree will be lit for the holidays. Also, the Paxton Park District’s holiday prince and princess will be announced. The Hope Vineyard Church will be hosting the event and will be providing hot chocolate and cookies. There will be a story time held at the downtown church after the tree is lit.
PRIDE in Paxton’s Christmas Parade is scheduled for 1:30 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 30, in downtown Paxton. Line-up for the parade begins at 1 p.m. at the intersection of Taft and Orleans streets. The parade will move east on Orleans Street before turning onto Market Street. It ends at the intersection of Market and Pine streets. Paxton-based WPXN-Radio will broadcast the parade live and announce entries. For more information, call Teri Hancock at 217-379-4245.
Paxton’s annual bag sale/Christmas open house weekend is set for Friday, Dec. 6, through Monday, Dec. 9, at participating businesses. More than 1,500 bags, featuring coupons and marketing materials for local businesses, will be printed and distributed locally during the course of the city’s Christmas parade and at local businesses.