Sunday, September 24, 2023


Drove through downtown after the Off the Rails Concert ended (Did not attend the concert but I was working late) and noticed that, while there was a decent amount of foot traffic in the Hangar 9 and Trax area, Stix was closed. I have not heard if they got hit with any citations or maybe they were opening even later than 10 in the evening. still, since I have seen a line out the door earlier in the semester, it seems stranges to see the place shuttered on a Saturday night.

Friday, September 22, 2023

Quigley Hall

 According to faculty who work in the building, the electrical system in Quigly Hall is woefully out of date. At the time the bulding was contructed, engineering design was done on paper and fashion merchandising primarily relied on sewing machines. Now both colleges use computers and CAD, which draw a lot more power, straining the outdated electrical system. In addition, the HVAC system is so old that faculty need fans and air conditiong units during the spring and summer and heaters during the winter, adding more stress to the system. . It is amazing they do not have more electrical outages in the building than they do.

Thursday, September 21, 2023

Quatro's Owner Found Dead

 According to this, Quatro's owner Blake Morrison, who purchased the restaurant last yearfrom longtime owner Steve Payne, was found dead while on a cruise with friends through the Bahamas.  Morrison was found Wednesday morning lying near the pool deck on the ship. Quatro's will continue to operate while family decides what to do.

clorox Shortage

 The current shortage of Clorox wipes and other products is not due to an outbreak of viruses or FOMO or even supply shortages but a cyberattack upon the company. Who the heck cyberattacks a cleaning products company?

Wednesday, September 20, 2023

SIUC Infrastructure

 SIUC really needs funding dedicated to repairing its current infrastructure. From what I have heard, and correct me if I am wrong, there are fewer than a dozen maintenance people on staff to make repairs to HVAC systems, electrical systems, etc. For a campus the size of SIUC that is woefully understaffed. Some if the equiptment is so old, maintenance cannot find parts for them from regular sources and are forced to look for them on sites like eBay.

I did read that the state is directing funding to the university but I also read it was for new buildings. Unless the administration plants to replace obsolete buildings like Graul, the money needs to go into upgrading current facilites.

Tuesday, September 19, 2023

Enrollment Up

 I guess any improvement is good but SIUC is making waaaay too much out of an increase in enrollement of 230 students. The univeristy for years has positioned small decreases as evicende that its new programs are "turning the tide" and the univeristy is about to "turn the corner". If those miniscule decreases didn't matter, than a 2.3% increase shouldn't either. Of course, since it is the most positive news about enrollment in a decade, I cannot blame the administration for trumpeting it but before they break their arm by patting themselves on the back, let's see what numbers are like in Fall of 2024.

Monday, September 18, 2023

Too Much Open Space

 I was talking with another retailer and we both agreed that downtown Carbondale, among other problems, has too much open space. Not green space, which would be fine, but parking space, which is rather suprising given the compaints I have seen about the lack of parking in downtown. I think more the complaint is the lack of "free" parking in downtown. 

The north end of the Strip is separated from the south end but a large stretch of parking. Walk past Old Town Liquors and you have Big Chill nee Dairy Queen sitting alone in the middle of a comparatively large parking area before getting to the Varsity Center. On the other side of the street, one you pass Pag's Pizza, there is parking, then the Amtrak Station, then more parking before reaching Walnut.

Once Booby's reopens, that will help matters some as it will help pull customers from the south end towards the north, but that is still a whole lot of empty space for potential customers to walk past.

Saturday, September 16, 2023

Spirit Halloween

 You can tell Halloween is slowly getting closer when the seasonal Spirit Halloween opens up, this year in the empty Bed Bath and Beyond. Incidentally, Unofficial Halloween will take place Oct 28, the same day as most of the city's Official Halloween events.

Friday, September 15, 2023

Big Chill

Should be getting a new neon sign for downtown's Big Chill, to replace the removed Dairy Queen sign. The new one uses font very similar, though not identical, to the removed sign. Plans are to have it in place by October.

Thursday, September 14, 2023

Blocko's Closing

 According to this Facebook post from the owner, Blocko's Restaurant will close permanently this Sunday. No details as to why although the owner did say the past week since the shooting was terrible.

Harold's Reopening

 Harold's Chicken has been closed for a few months but the reopening will take place at noon on Sept . 20  . Given the amount of excitment the chain generated when it opened in Carbondale, I was rather suprised to see it close so quickly. Heard there were staffing problems but that is second hand. Anyway, glad to see them opening again.

Wednesday, September 13, 2023

Blocko's Update

 Carbondale police have arrested a male juvenile for the shooting at Blocko's restaurant on Sept 2 and are seeking another juvenile in conjuction with the shooting but he has not been located yet. The victim is still in hospital but stable and Blocko's has reopened.


 If it bleeds, it leads. Stabbing yesterday afternoon in the 100 block of East Jackson on the north side of the square. The victim's injuries were serious but not life threatening and they were transported to hospital. The attacker fled the scene and was later arrested on East Grand Avenue and charged with domestic batter. 

Tuesday, September 12, 2023


Last Saturday night, after a basketball game in the old high school complex some 300 kids started a fight in the parking area. Police arrived and the fight quickly ended with little to no co-operation with the police. There was rumor of at least one knife used during the fight but authorities found no weapons or injuries. One person did contact police with an injury afterward with a minor injury but no medical attention needed.

Monday, September 11, 2023

Missing Person

 Update:  Jan Borowitz was found safely in a wooded area near her home shortly after 11 am. this moning. Somewhat dehydrated but otherwise OK

From the Williamson County Sheriff's Office:

Missing Senior Citizen

Williamson County, Illinois - The Williamson County Sherriff’s Office is asking for help from the public in locating a missing senior citizen. 

Janet Borowitz, 81, has not been seen since Saturday, September 9, 2023, at approximately 10:30am. 

Borowitz is believed to have walked away from her residence in the 5000 block of Bald Eagle Lane, Carbondale, Illinois, which is located in rural Williamson County. 

Borowitz is described as 5’ 0”tall and weighing 100 pounds; she has blue eyes and blonde hair.

Anyone who knows Borowitz’s whereabouts is asked to call the Williamson County Sheriff’s Office at 618-997-6541. 

From her daughter in law Becky Borowitz Facebook page

"For anyone waiting to help… the authorities have a procedure in place so we are not sending folks into the woods.

But, I can assign roads to check.

My mother in-law’s wearing a long sleeve, off white shirt, black tennis shoes, and black pants. She is very small in weight and height. In this picture she is smiling. I would assume she is not smiling and may appear distressed.

Please keep your eyes open in these areas…

If you live in these areas, please check your property, barns, porches, sheds, out buildings. She has been gone since Saturday and probably hasn’t had anything to drink or eat.

Little Grassy Campground




Smaller roads along Grassy Road

Giant City Park

Smaller drives on Boskeydell Road (west of Giant City School)

Giant City Road

Spillway Road

Rocky Comfort Road

Devil’s Kitchen Campground

Giant City Campground

She likes Barnes & Noble"

Sunday, September 10, 2023


 According to the owner of Sal's Bistro, adjoining restaurant Chango's should reopen about the middle of September. I see they already have a fresh coat of paint on the building.  I know several people who will be very happen when this occurs.

Tuesday, September 5, 2023

SIUC Enrollment Up

 SIUC enrollment up about 2.3% or 252 more students, over fall 2022, at least so far. I have heard second hand that a number of students dropped out of the university this past weekend, maybe enough to wipe out that increase. I certainly hope not and, while I am certainly glad to see any increase, this 2.3% increase is comparable to the small decreases the unviversity saw in numbers over the past 30 years. Every year since 1990, student numbers dropped a tiny percentage, statitically tiny but it certainly added up over three decades. 

If the administration sees 2.5% increases in student numbers over the next three years or so, it has reason to pat itself on the back but a 2.3% increase is just staunching the bleedling, It will take 2-4 more years of similar numbers before SIUC can say its strategy to increase enrollment has worked.

Monday, September 4, 2023

Paul Simon Public Policy Institute 25 Anniversary

 The Paul Simon Public Policy Institute celebrates its 25th anniversary this year and has two events scheduled one at the end of this month in Chicago and one at the end of October here in Carbondale. Mildly bemusing that the Chicago event is scheduled on  a Friday night, when generally people are planning for things to do for the weekend. with drinks provided before the event and refreshments afterward. Meanwhile, Carbondale's event gets scheduled for Monday night, a weeknight on which a lot of people do not want to go out as they have to go to work or class on the following day.

Sunday, September 3, 2023

Stop Lights

 Really wish the city would change the left turn lights on the stop lights in town to only yellow and green, no red. I can see being cautious (yellow) when making a left hand turn across oncoming traffic but having to sit there while the light is red when there is no oncoming traffic seems a waste of both time and gasoline. State law does say that turning left on red onto a one way street is legal, although city government may pass ordinances making doing so illegal

Saturday, September 2, 2023

Bloko's Temporarily Closed

 According to this post from the Carbondale Police there was a shooting at Bloko's on S. Illinois this afternoon about 4:20 with one person shot and critically injured enough to require hospitalization. A post on Facebook says the injured person was the restaurant's owner and the release from the police says the victim and alleged shooter knew each other. 

Edited to correct Bloko's spelling

Friday, September 1, 2023

Golden Corral

 Appears the Carbondale Golden Corral is not temporarily closed as I posted earlier this week. According to the company website, the location has "permanently closed". That happened pretty quickly. I guess the company used the excuse of the sewer leakage and HVAC problems as a reason to shutter the doors and then, after that was doen, post that the restaurant would not reopen.

That leaves only one buffet style restaurant in Carbondale Qin Guan. 

Thursday, August 31, 2023

Tom's Place Becomes Big Nate's

 Glad to see that Big Nate's now has a permament location but somewhat torn about the name change as both of them have strong brands. Tom's Place has almost a century of brand name recognition in the region and Big Nate's has about 5 years, although 40 years of experience cooking and Tom's Place chef Blake Squibb will remain on the staff.  Since the menu is shifting away from what Tom's Place was known for the past 20 years, the name change is probably a good idea.

Wednesday, August 30, 2023

Global Gormet

 Global Gourmet has temporarily closed until Sept 6th. The owner is traveling and tasting in Europe.

Tuesday, August 29, 2023

Golden Corral Temporarily Closed

According to the sign on the building the east side Golden Corral has termporarily closed for remodeling and will reopen sometime in September. The business had a lot of problems with is HVAC system last week during the heat and sewer problems in the Reeds Station Road area did not help matters. I heard several reports of the odor of sewage in the restaurant as well as throughout the area.


 Appears the legalisation of cannibis , at least at the local and state levels, has really taken off in Carbondale. I had people tell me that, as they walked around last weekend's parties, there was enough marijuana smoke hanging in the air that they got a serious contact high and case of the munchies. 

Dunno if it is any safer to have people smoke and drive than it is to have them drink and drive, though.

Monday, August 28, 2023


 Cool mural but not sure how it relates to Carbondale or Southern Illinois? The others that have gone up have either referenced SIUC directly, Buckminister Fuller or illustrated Carbondale's relationship with the rail industry or the historical importance of Woodlawn Cemetary. The owl, located on the back of Slabz Skatepark, is striking but how, if at all, does it tie into Carbonale.  sure the building owner can paint whatever they want on it, within reason,  but most mural projects tangentally relate to the community. Maybe I am missing the point of the mural. If so, could someone clarify it for me?

Sunday, August 27, 2023

Solar Bear 2

 Good crowd for a Solar Bear party on West College yesterday afternoon and there was another one in the 500 block of S. University last night. No major problems for the police from what I have heard. They did have to break up the S. Univeristy house party and use pepper spray on the crowd over at Levels.

When I drove through the area about 9:30 p.m., things were comparatively quiet. No crowds on College or Univeristy or over on Grand, though lots of cars in the Levels parking lot. People walking around on S. Illinois and lots of cars parked but no lines waiting to get into bars. Of course, that may have changed later in the evening.

Saturday, August 26, 2023

Solar Bear

 Solar Bear takes place today. Most of the activity should concentrate around the Levels' nightclub over on East Grand behind the old Pinch Penny Pub location. I have not seen much activity today as I have in past years but I have heard Carbondale police are anticipating a busy night.

Off the Rails Concert

 I read some people complaining that the Joslyn and the Sweet Compression took place the week before move in started at SIUC, hence students would not be in the city in great numbers to attend. Those folks failed to look at the Off the Rails concert schedule as Laura Jane Grace and the Copyrights will  perform tonight starting at 7 p.m.

According to the schedule, barring rain, we can expect a concert in the Washington Street venue every other Saturday through October. 

Friday, August 25, 2023

Walker's Bluff

 Walker's Bluff Casino opened today. I drove out there a few weeks ago to take a look  and the complex sits in the middle of the countryside. One has to make a special trip to go there as there is no other draw in the area. A few years ago, the lack of casinos in Illinois might have made Walker's Bluff a reasonable proposition but today, most casinos are struggling from the competition. I assume the owners have made an analysis and determined that the operation will prove profitable but, unless southern Illinois works more to make itself more of a tourist destination, I do not think Walker's Bluff will prove strong enough to pull in visitors on its own.  Given than, I really hope I am wrong. 

Thursday, August 24, 2023


 Someone lost control of their car in the Old Train Depot parking lot this afternoon. The ran over a parking meter and bench and ended up elevated with the nose of his car pressed against the Depot wall. The driver kept rocking the car back and forth trying to free it but only wound up blowing a tire and ripping out the gas line. Police and fire departments were on the scene as of 5 p.m. today.

Mail Fraud

 I read in the news that theft of mailbox master keys are on the rise throughout the nation. According to this press release, a group of four men stole a master key and were using it to open collection boxes throughout the city. Primarily they stole checks, likely governmental, altered them and deposited them into their own accounts.

Wednesday, August 23, 2023

Sesquicentennial Anniversary

 Stuck my head in briefly at the Sesquicentennial Anniversary celebration this afternoon and was happy to see close to 300 people sitting and listening to the speakers. Also grabbed a copy of the new Historic Bike Tour brochure laying out historic spots around the community with a bike route to visit each of them. Hopefully copies will be racked someplace in the civic center.

Tuesday, August 22, 2023

Missing Adult Located

Raeann Ashley was last seen in Carbondale on August 11 in the 400 block of E. College and was reported missing on August 18th . She has been found somewhere by another law enforcement agency, which likely indicates she was found outside of Carbondale. 

Carbondale CommUNITY Sesquicentennial Anniversary

 tomorrow at 3 p.m. at the Civic Center. Not sure why the organizers decided to have it at 3 pm when a good chunk of potential attendees are still at work and most kids are still in school, or getting out at that time. This would have been a great event to get kids to attnend.

Maybe the organizers have  worked out something with the schools to bring kidsthere as an after school event. If so, I have not heard of it.

Monday, August 21, 2023

Solar Bear

 From what I have heard, Solar Bear will return to Carbondale this Saturday, August 26, now sponsored by Levels, the bar back behind what used to be Copper Dragon. 

For those not familiar with Solar Bear, it is a day long booze fest with drink specials at local bars, primarily Pinch Penney in the past, with house parties throughout the town. A few times it got so bad that SIUC set up hydration stations and medical check up points near the intersection of Grand and Wall.

Given the 96 F/ 35 C temperatures expected this weekend, I worry we will see some students suffering from heatstroke unless they are very careful.

Saturday, August 19, 2023

Wrong Way

 With the number of new comers to Carbondale and the number of one way streets in the city, I expect a number of them to drive the wrong way on Main, Walnut, Illinois and University. Local residents ought to expect this and drive more defensively on those steets, at least until the end of the month.

Friday, August 18, 2023

Preservation Commission

 The Carbondale Preservation Commission meets this Monday at 5:30 p.m. in room 103 of the civic Center.  However, according to the agenda, there is no business before it save an election.

Wednesday, August 16, 2023

Don Luna

 The South 51 section of Carbondale now has another food option beyond McDonald's and what you can find at the two convenience stores there. Don Luna has opened a Carbondale location in the old Arnold's Market building. Drive through only and the hours appear to be 10:30 a.m. to 8 p.m.

Tuesday, August 15, 2023


 From what I have heard, the downtown Chango's location will reopen late August or early September. It will be nice for Sal's bistroy to not have to share the building with an empty space.

Sunday, August 13, 2023

Off the Rails 2

 Got to the Off the Rails Concert about 9:30 last night and figure there were still about 200 people there listening. There were also about 6 food trucks there and about 10 or so craft vendors. The ones that I spoke with said they had seen steady but not stellar business and felt that the heat and mugginess had kept larger crowds away.

Given there was also a concert at the Varsity Center and at least one other musical event in town, it looked like a pretty good turnout

Saturday, August 12, 2023

Off The Rails Concert

 The first fall Off the Rails Concert starts tonight at 7 p.m. and runs until 10 p.m. Takes place in the Washington Street Event venue, aka the grassy area along Walnut Street next to the railroad tracks.  Eventually the plan is to put a permanent stage at the south end of the space, meaning no longer having assemble and dismantle a stage for each performance.  Last time I checked, the plan was to get the stage built sometime in 2024 or 2025.  Doubt the city can get it in place in time for next year's eclipse. 

Friday, August 11, 2023

Buckminister Fuller

 I know I say this every so often but I really wish SIUC and the city would do more to promote their conncection to Bucky Fuller. He is arguably one of the greatest futurists of the 20th century and spent more time assoicated with SIUC than any other institution with which he was affiliated. There are the dome shelters on campus, the Fuller Dome NFP restoring Fuller's home in Carbondale, the geodesic structure next to Gaia house, a mural in the alley behind La Unica Bakery and another privately owned dome behind the west side SIUC Credit Union. We really could use more honoring the man and drawing attention to his residency here.

Thursday, August 10, 2023

Mural Ordinance Change

 According to city ordinance, any murals painted on walls in the city could be graphics only, no text. The murals painted under the auspices of Artspace 304 on the walls of SI Pawn and The Wellness Center both were in violation of this ordinance, so Tuesday night the city coucil passed an amendment to the ordinance allowing text in murals, thus once again proving the adage that "it is better to beg forgiveness than ask permission."


 Given the number of house demolishions along West Oak and South Almond, I would expect SIH to build upon those properties sometime in the next year or so. 

All of the houses, save one, along West Oak between Poplar and University have been demolished, including the reportedly haunted "Rain House" and the one time but extensively renovated home of Gen John H. Logan. In addition, all of the houses along West Oak between Poplar and Almond and the houses on N. Almond between Main and Oak are gone. I had not realized how much demonlition had taken place in the area until I happened to bike through there this week. Just a lot of empty lots, which I expect SIH will expand its campus onto within the next couple of years which, since SIH is a not for profit, means more property taken off the tax rolls.

Wednesday, August 9, 2023

24 Hour Restaurants

 I was reading in the Southern Illinois Eats group on Facebook a complaint about the lack of 24 hour restaurants in Carbondale. I think the latest any place stays open is Taco Bell until 3 p.m. and then only the drive through.

If I remember correctly, the last two 24 hour restaurants we had here were Denny's , which shut down back in 2020, with the building now razed, and The Corner Diner, which closed at least 15 years ago. Towards the end of its run, the primary late night customers at the Corner Diner were SIUC students that came there after Morris Library closed for the night. They would order a cup of coffee, which came with free refills and settle in to do homework for a few hours. Similarly, late night customers at Denny's would order a  light meal and sit there for hours. Hence why no businesses, save gas stations, stay open all night. It is just not profitable. Wal-mart, Kroger and Schnucks all tried the 24 hour model for a few years and gave it up. 

The business has to pay people to work there, in the case of a restaurant at least 3, a waiter, cook and someone to clean. That is a significant amount of payroll for not much business. Couple that with the fact that they would get the customers looking for something to eat after an evening of bar hopping and it is just not worth the money and hassle.

A convenience store, with only 1-2 people there over night, that doesn't have to wait on and cook for people, can be profitable. So can a 24 hour restaurant near a highway interchange with lots of traffice. There are just not enough late night customers in Carbondale, currently, to justify a 24 diner.

Tuesday, August 8, 2023

Glenn Poshard Signings

 Glenn Poshard and author Carl Walworth will sign copies of Poshard's recently published biography "Son of Southern Illinois at three different locations on Wednesday August 9th. You can meet the pair and pick up a copy of the book at the Harrisburg District Library from 9:30 a.m. to 11 a.m.; noon to 1:30 p.m. at the Herrin City Library; 3 p.m. to 4 p.m. at the Stinson Memorial Library in Anna and 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. at the Varsity Theater in Carbondale.

Monday, August 7, 2023

150th Anniversary

 The city will celebrate the 150th anniversary of its incorporation on August 30th at 3 p.m. In anticpation of the event, the city has commissioned Kendal Bell to paint a celebration mural on the windows of the Civic Center/City Hall.

Would have been nice to see a series of events taking place leading up to the anniversary date. Would reallylike to see the city and SIUC do something like that leading up to next year's Eclipse.

Sunday, August 6, 2023

Movie Series

 the Varsity Center for the Arts wrapped up its summer movie series this past Saturday. Nice to see films playing in the venue again. Here is hoping they can make this a biannual or even quarterly event.

Saturday, August 5, 2023

IG Owner Passes Away

 From the Arbor District mailing list

"We learned yesterday that Rosli (Li) Habibullah and his wife Guillerma (Gemma) Habibullah died in a traffic accident that occurred on Wednesday, between here and Champaign where their daughter, Mona, lives. You probably know Li, even if you did not know his name: he was the owner of International Grocery in the Murdale Shopping Center. Gemma was retired from teaching math at St. Piux X High School in Festus, MO, and serving as an adjunct faculty member at Saint Louis University (SLU)."

From what I have heard, the store is continuing to operate.

Friday, August 4, 2023

Heat Island Study

The  Greater Egypt Regional Planning and Development Commission with assistance from the City of Carbondale is conducting a heat island study of Carbondale and are asking for people to complete the survey. You can take the desktop version here.

I would just hope that something happens as a result of the survey and it does not just get tossed on a back shelf

Thursday, August 3, 2023


 Evolve Apartments opened its doors officially on August 5th back in 2015 after razing the 710 Bookstore complex and wiping out most of the parking on the south end of the Strip. 

Despite space for about 4 retail storefronts on the ground floor, only one, Insomnia Cookies, has managed to open and stay in business. No other business has ever ever opened a location in the space. In addition, the four storefronts in the strip above Trax have see, by my estimation, at least a dozen businesses open to feed on customers generated by the apartment complex next door. None has lasted longer than a year.

From what I have heard, occupancy has never reached more than about 65%. The walls do not do much to block sound from other residents and, unless it has been fixed, there were some questions about if the wiring was up to code at the time the building opened.

Wednesday, August 2, 2023

Another One Gone

 SIUC has a problem keeping athletic staff as the football defensive coach resigned today. No indication this was due to any questionable activity on the coach's part, as has been the case with some other resignations. In the past, the University had a problem with staff sexually harassing athletes, complaints getting filed and no action or investigation undertaken

Tuesday, August 1, 2023

150 Year Celebration

 Carbondale celebrates 150 years since its incorporation on August 23. From the description, it looks as if there will be candles and speeches. Maybe cake if we are lucky.

Monday, July 31, 2023

Police Cameras

Apparently the police department has an entire bank of cameras in the station monitoring various street intersections  and other locations in town. However, they are not regularly monitored by humans and only reviewed if a crime is committed and within view of one of the cameras.

Sunday, July 30, 2023

Paw Prints

 If you have noticed the paw prints on the main streets and a number of piece of private property, those are a fund raising and civic project of the Saluki Pride Committee of the Carbondale Chamber of Commerce. Each summer, recruits volunteer to spend 2 Sunday mornings painting prints on east and west 13 and north and south 51 as well as side streets such as Giant City Road and East Grand Avenue. All of the street pawprints point towards the SIUC campus, while the ones on private property point wherever the property owner wants. Getting a print painted in your driveway costs $100 with the money going to pay for the ones on the streets and to help fund the Chamber's Saluki Stay Scholarship.

Saturday, July 29, 2023

Lloyd Rich

If you would like to attend the funeral of one of Carbondale's more colorful characters, a funeral mass for Lloyd Rich will take place at the Newman Center on August 5th at 10 a.m. Rich was indigent so donations to help cover the cost of the funeral are accepted at the Newman Center and St. Francis Xavier offices. 

Friday, July 28, 2023

Stop lights

 Maybe it is just me but the stop lights on University and Illinois at Walnut and Main Streets  certainly seem to have annoyingly callibrated timers. it appears that during the day, the lights count down and then change as soon as the timer reaches 0. At night, they count down, then the red "hand of warning" appears and cars have to sit there for another 1-2 minutes. Just set the times to have the same duration both day and night as there is traffic on both 13 and 51.

Thursday, July 27, 2023

Church Fire

Appears last February's fire at the Walnut Street Baptist Church was arson. This afternoon, Carbondale Police arrested Ramil Mize as a suspect. No motive given and the investigation is ongoing.

Wednesday, July 26, 2023

Saluki Way Tax

 The Saluki Way tax is due to expire in 2027 but waiting until then to push the council not to renew it is a bad idea. Unless residents want to keep a sales tax higher than 93% of the rest of the state's municipalities, they need to start letting the current members of the council know they do not want any resolutions passed keeping the tax.

Tuesday, July 25, 2023

Broken Glass

 If you are driving the alley that runs behind Castle Perilous, La Unica, Electric Larrys and Indigo Lounge, be careful as there are a couple of broken beer bottles in the road behind Indigo. Unfortunately, the city sweeper never makes it down those, or any of the alleys in Carbondale, so I play to get out there tomorrow afternoon when I get back to town and sweep it up.

I can see the city not wanting the sweeper to try to negotiate the alleys in downtown or in residential areas as they can be tough to navigate. Still makes it hard when some one decides to break glass or otherwise spread garbage. The city has been pretty good about clearning up gravel piling up around the speed bumps back there and fixing potholes when called to its attention.

Monday, July 24, 2023

Eclipse Preparation

 Maybe there is work done behind the scenes but it doe not seem as if either Carbondale or SIUC are doing much to prepare for next years eclipse. This was spraked by hearing a list of eclipse themed activities taking place soon in Cape Girardeau on WSIU this morning. Nothing similar that I have heard for Carbondale. When I drove through Perryvill Mo a couple of weekends ago, the city had a large sign posted in their park "Eclipse Viewing Site".Carbondale and SIUC are at the epicenter of the eclipse so how hard would it be to put up a similar sign near Saluki Stadium to build awareness of the event.

Saturday, July 22, 2023

Lloyd Rich

Lloyd Rich, also known to locals as "TimeLloyd", passed away this last Sunday. Not sure as to what the cause was but he had been in ill health for a number of years. Rich was a Carbondale fixture since at least the 1990s when I moved to town. Recognizable by his floppy hat, Tom Baker Dr. Who style scarf and omnipresent bicycle, Rich could ususally be counted upon to put in an appearance at most outdoor Carbondale events for years. If you ever attended the Lights Fantastic parade and saw a man pedaling a bicycle festooned with Christmas lights, that was Lloyd.

Rich loved Douglas Adams' The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy and the Dr. Who tv series, hence the nickname he used, "TimeLloyd" and annually for years he posted notices inviting people to Intergalatic Picnics with a reminder to "bring your towel". He was also an early user of SIUC's computer system, back when the university allowed non-students to access and store material on its drives. Someo

In the last decade, he had a couple of serious bike accidents, which curtailed his bike use, meaning he relied on public transport or the kindness of friends to get around. Until the COVID 19 pandemic started, he remained a fixture at mass at St. Francis Xavier and the Newman Center, as well as the Thankgiving and Christmas dinners hosted by them. The last time I saw him a year or two ago, he was wheelchair bound.

With his passing, Carbondale has lost as unique a personality as Tanner was.  In fact, some years ago, someone made a pack of cards featuring Carbondale personalities including Tanner, former Mayor Brad Cole and Rich. 
Farewell TimeLloyd, say Hi to The Doctor, and So Long and Thanks for All the Fish.

Friday, July 21, 2023

Saluki Way Tax

 From what I am hearing, the city council already plans to keep the Saluki Way tax in place when it expires later this decade. Passing a resolution doing so will likely be all that will be necessary to do as that is what the council did when the sales tax increase to pay off bonds issued to pay for new roofing on the high school expired. Unlike the initial vote to increase the sales tax, which attracted large crowds for a council meeting, the resolution to keep the roof tax part of the sales tax passed very quietly with only a few people in attendance.

Carbondale's sales tax is currently 9.75%, higher than 93% of cities and counties in the state. At least we are not as high as Chicago, which is 10.25%

Wednesday, July 19, 2023

Boys and Girls Club

 According to this, after 20 years the Boys and Girls Club of Southern Illinois will close up shop this Friday. Until 2021, it was the Boys and Girls Club of Carbondale then changed its name and opened up a facility in Marion. No details in the release but I would guess that there was not enough funding coming in to support both facilities and trying to keep them open drained enough resources that it proved infeasible to keep both open. Otherwise I could see shuttering the Marion location and consolidating operations back to Carbondale.

Tuesday, July 18, 2023

Geologic Odditites

 Geologic Oddities had its grand opening last Saturday at 606 South Illinois Ave. Gift shop primarily focusing on rocks and crystals. Closed Monday and Tuesday, open noon to 8 the rest of the week.

Monday, July 17, 2023


 Shooting on South Lewis Lane yesterday morning shortly before 6 p.m. Victim was treated and released and police are still  looking for the shooter. From the sound of it, the victim could or would not identify the person that shot them.

Also a knifing on S. Poplar last Friday afternoon about 12:30.  Again the victim was injured but not seriously enough to require hospitalition and the suspected assailant has been arrested. The two were meeting to complete a transaction set up on social media, when one pulled  a knife on the other. Once again, indicating it is a good reason to complete transactions such as this in a"safe space" such as the lobby of the Carbondale Public Safety Department, aka the Police Department. 

Sunday, July 16, 2023

Saluki Gymnastics

 In case you were wondering, Saluki Gymnastics moved out of its old location in Eastgate Shopping Center, awhile back. Now located in the vacated CVS pharmacy next to Legacy Fitness.

Saturday, July 15, 2023


 Appears that the reopening Booby's plans to make live music a focus of the restaurant with the new stage the owners are installing. By my calculations, once Booby's reopens, every storefront save two along the strety of S. Illinois between Walnut and W. College will have a business in it.  Chango's still sits empty since they decamped for Marion and there is still an empty spot between Bombay Olive and Artistic Minds Tattoo. 

Friday, July 14, 2023

Marberry Arboretum

 In case you have been worndering what has been going on at Marberry Arboretum, here is the answer:  bathrooms. The CPD got a grant for the Arboretum and has been cleaning up the damage done by the derecho of over a decade ago and redoing the parking lot, as well as installing bathrooms.

Thursday, July 13, 2023

Town Square Sales Taxes

 Looked at the business located on the Carbondale square and realized that over half of them do not collect any sales taxes. South side of the square is empty save for the train depot, which houses the offices of Carbondale Main Street and the Carbondale Chamber of Commerce, both of which are not for profits that don't sell anything. 

The west side of the square consists of offices, Fringe, Practice Pad and the Rainbow Cafe. Practice Pad may sell some musical equiptment but its primary business is music lessons.. Services in Illinois do not collect sales taxes.

North and east sides have two restaurants, 2 groceries, ABC Liquors, Hair Brains and Arthur Agency. The first five do collect sales taxes but the last two do not. That is a lot of places in downtown not generating any sales tax revenue.

Wednesday, July 12, 2023


 Another mural completed, this one just west of Woodlawn Cemetary on the side of the Wellness Center. Features Calvin Scott playing the trumpet, as he does at every Memorial Day celebration at Woodlawn. The cameos are John A Logan on the right and Daniel Brush on the left.

Tuesday, July 11, 2023

Church Vandalism

 Man wallking through the parking lot at St. Francis Xavier Church one afternoon last week decided, for whatever reason, to pick up a rock and wing it through a church window. Happily a staff member saw the man break the window and got Carbondale police there before he left the area.

Sunday, July 9, 2023

Big Chill

 The renamed and revamped Dairy Queen, now named "Wazo's Big Chill" reopened this past Friday and crowds have been good so far. Both times I drove by there were people sitting on the wall along S. Illinois and a line of people at the window. 

I expect Big Chill to do much better than the relaunch of El Greco some years ago. Despite the long lines of people waiting to get into El Greco when it announced it was closing, and then again when it re-opened, there was never enough demand for the restaurant's menu to keep customers coming back multiple times. Ditto for Mississippi Flyway. Despite the lamentations upon its closure, people did not eat there often enough to keep it open.

Dairy Queen/Big Chill does not have that problem. The restaurant did not close because of lack of demand but because the franchisor yanked the license. The DQ's biggest problem was always finding enough staff to operate. Barring a major change in the menu, (Blizzards will have to have a different name as that is a DQ trademark), Big Chill should remain successful.

Saturday, July 8, 2023

Peeping Tom

 Carbondale Police are looking for a male with tan skin and a chubby face in his early 20s, who has been seen peering through the window of a house on West College and another on North Springer on the nights of June 29th and July 5. The decription of the man in both cases is similar enough that it is likely the same person. In the case of the North Springer incident, residents of the house saw the man looking through a window on the second floor, while the West college sighting was through a ground floor window.

Friday, July 7, 2023

Vandal Arrested

 41 year old Dustin Randolph of Marion was arrested today in Carterville on charges of vandalizing several law firms in Carbondale the last week of June.

Randolph was charged with throwing rocks and chunks of concrete through the windows of 4 different law firms and a retail business between June 27 and June 30.

City Flag

 Might be time to update the city flag. Just looking at it does not indicate what the symbols on it mean. According to the city code, "The City flag shall consist of the Corporate Seal in gold, black and white on a white background."

The items on the city seal are a railroad track and spike, a lamp symbolizing education, a cross commemorating the first Memorial Day observance, along with cotton boles with the black coloring honoring the importance of coal to the region.

As I have read elsewhere, seals go on offical docutments. Flags should be simpler and not need to have the name of the community on it.

Thursday, July 6, 2023

PR Position Open

 In case you are looking for a job, the City of Carbondale has a Public Relations officer position open. Former PR officer Roni LeForge-Croxwell resigned her office to take a position as the Egyptian Electric Communications Co-ordinator, starting, well, yesterday. Initial application deadline is 4 p.m. July7th 

Restaurants on Vacation

 The following resaurants/food places are currently closed for vacation.

Thai Taste-reopens July 7th

La Unica Bakery -reopens July 10

Mary Lou's - reopens July 11

Electric Larry's was closed today as well but no indication that they will close for the entire week.

DQ Reopening

 The Downtown Dairy Queen will reopen tomorrow as the "Big Chill".  Hours are 1 p.m. to 10 p.m. Hoping they get a new neon sign on the roof to replace the old one.

Wednesday, July 5, 2023


 Man, the (illegal) fireworks were loud and abundant this year. I starting hearing loud explosions in the downtown area around 6  p.m. and saw a number of aerial displays on north side of town on the way home. Several groups apparently did not have suitable places to shoot them off around their house as they had set up their boomies in the street. I heard some fireworks shot off were powerful enough to shatter a window over on Rawlings. Apparently there was no concern by the celebrants regarding the fact that the city has only had an inch of rain in the past two month. I did hear the sirens of several emergency vehicles but no reports of any fires, thank goodness.

Last year, I remember driving home through a haze of smoke but fewer aerial displays. This year, more displays but less neighborhood smoke. 

Tuesday, July 4, 2023

Declaration of Independence

Read the Declaration of Independence on Facebook Live this afternoon. Interview Interview and a snippet of the reading appeared on Wsil 3 this evening at 5 and 6. Hope to recruit others to particpate in the reading next year. Hopefully the mayor, ED of the Chamber of Commerce and a few council members and civic leaders and community members.

Monday, July 3, 2023

Brown Bag Concerts

 Here is the schedule for July's Brown Bag Concerts which take place at noon in the Town Square Pavillion. Still wonder why they do not host these in the evening when it is generally cooler and arrange for a food truck or two to set up.

Saturday, July 1, 2023

Law Firm Damages

 Someone has been wandering the street the past few nights chucking rocks and concrete chunks through law office windows including the front door of the Barrett, Twomey et. al. offices at the corner of Main and Illinois. Since 4 of the five buildings vandalized housed law offices, I would assume the culprit has a grudge against lawyers or the legal system.

Friday, June 30, 2023

Electric Scooters

 In case a refresher course is needed, here is the Carbondale code regarding the use of bicycles and electric scooters on sidewalks. Basically ride in the street and/or bike lanes except when unsafe. If on the sidewalk, riders on wheeled vehicles give the right of way to pedestrians

City does need to talk with Veo about doing  a better job of collecting the scooters from around town and returning them to parking hubs. Maybe the new multi-modal transit station will incorporat a scooter hub!

Thursday, June 29, 2023

Carbondale Tourism

The Carbondale Tourism office is shuttering June 30th, according to a post on its Facebook page. Since Carbondale's budget runs July 1 to June 30, I imagine tomorrow is when this year's funding runs out. Earlier this year, the city council voted to transfer tourism funding to Southernmost Illinois Tourism, which promotes tourism for most of southern Illinois, including the Shawnee National Forest. 

with a budget of $170,000, it was always rather difficult for Carbondale Tourism to make much of an impact drawing business and convention activity to the city. I estimate about a quarter to a third of the funding went for salaries and rent, not leaving much for promotional activities.

Tuesday, June 27, 2023

Turley Park Playground

 Crews finishing up work on the new fixtures at Turley Park playground. Ribbon cutting is this Thursday at 9 a.m.

\Nice to see work like this getting done around town. Maybe Attucks Park for the next project?

Monday, June 26, 2023

Railroad Crossings

 Illinois Central Railroad shut down and repaired the East College rail crossing last week. The shut down caused a lot less disruption than did the Walnut and Main Street closures but it needed it as badly as the other two did. Not sure if there are any plans to repair the other crossings but the other three do not need repair nearly as badly as those three did.

Sunday, June 25, 2023

House Fire

House Fire at the corner of North Oakland and West Willow, about 10 a.m. this morning. Police, fire and ambulances all present with traffic on both streets at the intersection blocked off.

Thursday, June 22, 2023


 Looks as if Carbondale's Fourth of July fireworks display will take place south of the Bantera Center on the SIUC campus. Spectators are advised to park in Banterra Center parking lots 18 and 56. Overflow parking will be directed to lot 89, north of the Banterra Center. Roads will start to close in the area about 6 p.m.

Big Chill

 According to this FB post, the shuttered Dairy Queen will be reopening under the name Big Chill. Likely looking at re-opening before the fall semester at SIUC begins

Wednesday, June 21, 2023

Tom's Place Closing

 After over a century in DeSoto, Tom's Place will be closing on July 1. The restaurant announced on its Facebook page today that, after over 100 years open and operating the past 25 years under the ownership of MaryJane and Lasse Sorensen, the couple has decided to close the business. They feel that the past three years have proved stressful and they have neither the energy nor the health to continue operating, but hope that someone may take over operations in the future.

Poplar Camp Beach

 The Illinois Department of Public Health has tested water samples from Poplar Camp Beach and bacteria levels are back to safe readings so the beach has reopened. Given the temperatures expected this week, that is a good thing.

Tuesday, June 20, 2023

Jackson County Health Department Survey

 JCHD has an online survey asking what the public feels are the biggest public health needs in the county. You can access it here. Results will be posted on the department's website in late August

Monday, June 19, 2023

Ash Street Fire

 Fire on East Ash street this morning about 1:45. Apparently no one injured but the apartment building collapsed.

Sunday, June 18, 2023

Ulta Beauty

 Ulta Beauty has completed its move out of Universty Mall and is now located between Bath and Body Works and Home Goods in the strip mall on the north side of Highway 13. Just one more step in the decline of the mall, a trend that is happening nationwide and overtook the Marion Mall some years ago.

Saturday, June 17, 2023

Poplar Camp Beach

 Closed because water testing revealed increased levels of E. Coli, which is not good for people. Appears the lack of rain for the past month has concentrated bacteria in the water. That, combined with an increased number of geese at the lake caused e. coli to reach dangerous levels. Ergo the beach is closed until further notice. Ah well, there is always the Splashpark.

Friday, June 16, 2023

Ground Breaking

Was wondering why I saw carts and a crowd of people at the Amtrak station today.  Broke ground for the new multi-modal transit station with about 20 people in hard hats awkwardly holding shovels and turning the first dirt (excluding that already moved by the earth moving equiptment) for the project. Scheduled for completion in December of 2024, probably before completion of the Washinton Street Entertainment Venue.

Thursday, June 15, 2023

Illinois College Students

 Just under 50% of Illinois high school students going to college leave Illinois to go a 4 year instituion in another state. Of those about 60% go to one of the following states: Wisconsin, Indiana, Iowa, Missouri, Michigan, and Ohio. it's not just an SIUC problem, it affects colleges throughout the state. SIUC just got hit a lot harder than most other colleges.

Slavery and Salt In Illinois

 On WSIUs In Focus today, the history of slavery in Illinois was discussed . The 1818 Illinois Constituion allowed the use of indentured slaves to refine salt at the Gallatin County salt licks. In 1823,  a referendum was put before voters to allow slavery throughout the entire state. The referendum passed in southern Illinois, where slaves were held, but defeated in the rest of the state and the Consistution ammended to eliminate slavery over time in the state.  The 1848 Constituion outlawed slavery throughout the state including the indentured slavery in Gallatin County. Without the cheap labor provided by slaves, it proved expensive to refine the salt to remove its high sulfur content, meaning Illinois salt could not compete against the purer slave refined salt produced in Virginia and the Carolinas, leading to the decline of the Illinois salt industry.

Wednesday, June 14, 2023


The Dairy Queen sign has been removed from atop the downtown Dairy Queen building. Purchased by a sign company in Anna so hopefully will go on display. Meanwhile, the sign for the relaunching Booby's , right across from the train station, has arrived and should go up on the building by the end of the month.

Tuesday, June 13, 2023


 Gun shots exchanged late Sunday night by stupid young men in the 700 block of South Illinois. Bullets shattered windows in at least two cars parked in the lot and another bullet broke a window in the Evolve Apartments across the street.  No one was injured, thank goodness.

city Council Position filled

 According to this post on Facebook, the council seat vacated by Carolin Harvey was assumed by Lacaje Hill:

The Carbondale City Council has announced the appointment of LaCaje Hill to fill the vacant seat on the City Council. This appointment is to fill the vacancy created by the swearing-in of Mayor Carolin Harvey. Hill's appointment will remain in effect until the end of the term on April 30, 2025.
Hill, who grew up in Carbondale, has volunteered with numerous organizations and helped coordinate food distribution events to support those in need.
Mayor Carolin Harvey expressed her confidence in Hill's abilities, stating, "I am delighted to welcome LaCaje Hill to the City Council. His passion will be invaluable in helping us work towards the betterment of Carbondale."
The City Council believes that Hill's appointment will further strengthen the representation of Carbondale's diverse population and ensure that all voices are heard and valued in shaping the City's future.

Monday, June 12, 2023

Marijuana Store

 Do not like calling them dispensiaries since the cannabis they sell is for recreational rather medicinal purposes but another cannabis store is opening in town on East Main in the space previously occupied by T. J. Martin's Jewelry. Given the steady customer stream at Consume Cannabis at the corner of Main and Washington, I imagine this one will do well, though it will not see much foot traffic. Opens June 15.

Saturday, June 10, 2023

Town Square

 Rather bemusing to see So Il. Pridefest held in the Washington Street Entertainment Event area this afternoon and then the Miracle Healing Crusade at the Town Square Pavillion this evening. Maybe there will be some crossover but I rather doubt it.

City Council Meeting

 Here's the next City Council Agenda. Major items on it, at least from my point of view:

1. appointing someone to fill out the remainder of Carolin Harvey's council term.

2. approve or deny the FullerDome Not for Profit's request for a special use permit for a Fuller Museum just south of the Dome. If any council people read this, I say approve it.

3. approving crematoriums in the auto and warehouse area north of the square

4. discussion of the 2024 Eclipse, which happens in less than a year.

5. approving a grant application for the Washington Street Entertainment Plaza

Hazardous Waste Disposal

 Illinois EPA will be collecting hazardous waste on June 24 from 8 a.m. until 2:45 pm in the South lot at the Bantera Center. Pre-registration is required so here is the link 

Thursday, June 8, 2023

East Walnut Crossing Repair

 Repairs on the railroad crossing on East Walnut street are expected to get completed by 6 p.m. June 9th

Then the East Main crossing will close for repairs on Monday at 8 a.m. and remain closed until 6 p.m. on the 16th.

Detour takes drivers to the north side of the Square to cross the tracks on East Jackson. However, I have found a much shorter wait by crossing the tracks at East College as most of the traffic takes the Jackson Street detour.

Wednesday, June 7, 2023

The Southern

 The Southern is moving to publishing only 3 print issues per week. At this rate, by 2025, they will only be putting out one issue a week, like the DE and The Carbondale Times.

Monday, June 5, 2023

Dairy Queen

 Looks as if the plans to reopen the Dairy Queen under another name are moving ahead. The parking lot for the building is closed today for sealcoating

Friday, June 2, 2023

Special City Council Meeting

 The city council will hold a special meeting this Tuesday at 6 p.m., likely to select the person to serve out the rest of Carolin Harvey's council term. Since there are citizen comments first, you could make statements in support of anyone you would like to see appointed to the post. 

Tuesday, May 30, 2023

Dairy Queen

 If you want to get a photo of the illumniated Dairy Queen sign one last time, the owner said he would turn it on between 9 p.m. and 10 p.m. on May 31. Lst chance before, barring a change of heart at corporate headquarters, it goes dark forever.

Saturday, May 27, 2023

Dairy Queen Closed

 Downtown Dairy Queen has closed effective immediately. No problem with the business as it was finacially sound. After disagreements with the franchisee,Joe Waicukauski,  on the way the store should be the national company decided not to renew the franchise agreement. From what I understand, for a number of years, the national company had been pushing Waichkauski to expand the selection to burgers, fries and other hot foods and to add a drive through, following the Chill & Grill model at most other DQs. This would increase sales, and hence the size of the franchise fees paid to the company.

As long as Waichkauski held the DQ franchise for the Carbondale area, no store using the Chill & Grill model could open up in the community. Now Dairy Queen is free to accept franchisees that it feels will generate more revenue for the company. 

The company forced a similarly operated DQ in Morton Ill. to close earlier this year, after 72 years in operation. Other walk up operations in Illinois and Florida have closed this year as well.

Carbondale did have a Chill & Grill format DQ at one time. Located on the west side of town, it closed down well over a decade ago, with a used car dealership most recently occupying the building. If someone was to put in a DQ franchise like the national company wants, it would most likely locate on the more heavily trafficed east side of town.

Here is a link to more background on the closure.

Friday, May 26, 2023

Art Services

 Looks as if something else will be moving into the Art Services location on South Illinois. There is a dumpster in front of the location getting filled with what looks like refuse from inside the building.

Tuesday, May 23, 2023


 From what I hear, Slabz new  retail location will be just south of SauSea's Seafood, in the old QQ Bubble Tea location. Unfortunately, not gaining a new retail location, therefore, just shifing spots, albiet to one with more visibility but less convenient parking.

Monday, May 22, 2023

Memorial Day

 Carbondale Will celebrate Memorial Day on May 29, starting with a flag raising at 10 a.m. Typically , the event lasts about a hour and the city will set up a walking tour of notables buried in the cemetary for a couple of hours afterward.

Saturday, May 20, 2023


 Antoher retailer is leaving University Mall. The Buckle has followed Old Navy and Bath and Body Works to Unversity Place Shopping Center, relocating to the vacant Kirkwood's location next to PetCo. I think now the number of empty locations in the mall exceeds the number of operating retail locations.

Friday, May 19, 2023

Fuller Dome Yard Sale

 The Buckminister Fuller Dome Home Not for Profit will host a yard sale to raise money for continued rehab work on the home. The society has collected items for the sale all year so should have a number of items available. Sale will take place on 5/20 at the Dome property.

Thursday, May 18, 2023

Cookbook Swap

 Picked up a lot of extra cookbooks during the epidemic?  You can donate them to benefit Good Samaritan House at the Carbondale Farmers' Market this Saturday. You can also take books, should you wish, for a donation to Good Sam.

Partnership Programs

 Apparently Chancellor Lane is establishing partnership programs with other colleges, wherein SIUC faculty will go teach assorted courses at the partner college. Unfortunately communication is somewhat lacking as in at least two cases, no one told the appropriate college or department until the program had been established and at lest one of the programs has already folded due to no students signing up for the program at the partner college.

Wednesday, May 17, 2023


Saw this group protesting women's health/abortion clinics outside City Hall about a quarter after 10 Tuesday morning. About two dozen of them there though the camera footage makes it look like more. you can read the lawsuit the Thomas More Society filed here. Certainly drawing national attention to the town, though probably not the type of attention city government would like.

Tuesday, May 16, 2023

Rise and Decline of SIUC

 The author, as do I, ascribes almost all of SIUC's growth during the 1950s and 1960s to Delyte Morris' focus on growing the univeristy through outreach beyond southern Illinois. He developed relationships with and expanded SIUC's reach into half a dozen different countries during his tenure as well as bringing numbers of GIs to study here under the GI Bill. After he was forced out, his relationships and single minded focus left with him. The univeristy, through inertia, continued to grow but more slowly until the 1990s when growth peaked and then started to slowly decline. 

No chancellor or president has held the office sufficiently long or with as much dedication as Morris did and the lack of resurgent growth shows. Chancellors continuallyproclaim that this year the univeristy is "turning a corner" towards growth but it never turns far enough.  Could SIUC grow again? Sure, but it will need a chancellor with a longer range focus than those over the past 30 years have offered.

Tower Road

 City has finished work on Tower Road. The patching is similar to that done on Giant City Road a couple of years ago, with the area containg the potholes removed, filled in and leveled, making the street much more tire friendly. The city is now working on Pleasent Hill Road east of Highway 51, the stretch from 51 over to Lewis Lane.

Monday, May 15, 2023

Robbie Stokes

 In case you missed it, local (and national) musican  Robbie Stokes passed away at age 73 this past weekend. His Music Historicity columns in the Southern grew out of his storytelling on the patio at Hangar 9 before and after shows.

Harbor Freight

 According to the sign on the building , big box tool retailer Harbor Freight will move into the location vacated by Party City. With Old Navy and Bath and Body Works moving into the space previously occupied by Best Buy, stores will occupy almost all of the storefronts in that retail strip. 

Saturday, May 13, 2023

Quiet in Downtown

 Took a quick drive through the student housing area between Poplar and University this evening and found it very quiet. I rather expected a few house parties but I guess students got all of their partying out of their system last weekend before finals week. Today was the day to graduate and/or leave town permanently or for the summer. 

Thursday, May 11, 2023

City Council Seat Open

As Carolin Harvey assumes the postition of mayor of Carbondale, her seat on the city council is now open. If you would like a seat on the council, through April 30 2025, you can drop off a  letter of interest and resume at City Hall or email them to no later than 5 p.m. May 22.  Below are the qualifications:

To qualify for the appointment, candidates must have been a resident of Carbondale for at least one year prior to the appointment, be free of tax and other debts owed to the City, and have no record of infamous crimes, bribery, perjury, or any other felony.

Memorial Day

 Wonder if Carbondale is backtracking on its claim as the location of the first Memorial Day celebration? Banners up throughout downtown promote Memorial Day but the subheading says it is the first celebration in Illinois rather than just the first proclaimed celebration anywhere.

Tuesday, May 9, 2023

City Council

 Mayor and city council members sworn in today.  I think Mayor Harvey is the first black and second female mayor for the city and the new members make the council majority female for the first time I can remember. Will be intersting to see if or how the city's direction changes.


Second Saluki Mural started over the weekend on the side of the Mountain Valley Water building, clearly visible to anyone heading west on Highway 13/ Main Street.  Started this past weekend, should be completed by this upcoming one. Project of the Carbondale Chamber of Commerce Saluki Pride Committee.


Monday, May 8, 2023

Downtown Saturday Night

 Looksed as if a lot of people were in downtown Carbondale Saturday night celebrating the end of classes for the year as well as parents in town to pick up their kids. The Hilton parking lot was packed as was nearly every parking space along South Illinois and in the First MidWest parking lot. It was shortly after 9 when I drove through so the crowd typlically perched on the wall enjoying Dairy Queen had dispersed and I did not see  much foot traffic in the area and no lines waiting to get into any of the bars.

Friday, May 5, 2023

Internet Outage

 The internet has had problems over the last couple of days in Carbondale, especially Clearwave. Apparently a cable got cut somewhere in the Kansas City region and it was enough to affect us here in sourthern Illinois, even if you do not have Clearwave as a provider.  Seems to be fined now as I have not heard any complaints today. Also shows how interconnected we are, that a damaged cable in the KC region can have an effect here.


 New mural going up on the east side of the Mountain Valley Water building. Will be another Saluki SIUC themed mural like the one downtown.  Plant is to paint it this weekend, weather permitting.

Wednesday, May 3, 2023

Train speeds

 According to the news, Amtrak train speeds will finally increase from a top speed of 90 mph to 110 mph later this month, meaning people travelling to Chicago from Carbodnale should get there about 15% faster.

Tuesday, May 2, 2023

Multi Modal Transit Center

 Heard an interview with city manager Gary Williams on WSIU today regarding the downtown transit center. Clearing the remnants of the old Carbondale Cycle building should be completed in a week or so and construction of the multi-modal transit center should begin by the end of May or first week of June. Wonder what will happen to the current Amtrak station? It will probably get removed as well but I would imaging that will happen after the new building is complete and its location used for more parking.

Monday, May 1, 2023


 State of Illinois still accpting applicatons for the B2B grants for hotels, restaurants and creative arts. Restaurant grants range from $5000 to $50,000, hotel grants are up to $1500 per room and creative arts can apply for $5000 to $250,000. If the business has already received some form of epidemic based grant, it is inelgible for these grants.

The B2B Grant for creative arts, hotels & resturants is still accepting applications. 

The grant applications will be open until May 10th! You can click here to get started. If you would like some assitance in getting your application done, please don't hesitate to reach out to Carbondale Main Street. We can reached by email at or you can give us a call at 618-529-8040. 

Saturday, April 29, 2023


 The planned relaunch of long closed sandwich shop Booby's appears closer to reality as the windows of the store front are now covered over with newspaper, indicating something going on inside the building. For years, due to its location directly across from the train depot, it was a tradition for students returning from Chicago or other parts north to arrive in town and head across the street for a sandwich at Booby's . Hopefully, the new owner plans to reopen the beer garden as well as Booby's beer garden was always a popular summer time hangout.


 Geez. Another killing in town, this time last night over on S. Lewis Lane. As with most criminals, the alleged killers were not very smart as the police arrested them within a few hours. 

Friday, April 28, 2023

Tower Road

 Work started on the repairs to Tower Road this week. the north end was limited to local access only for a couple of days but it appears traffic is moving more freely along the street now. Next week may block off access at the south end of the street.

Thursday, April 27, 2023

Cute Town

 Carbondale has been named one of the "8 cutest small towns in Illinois" according to the World Atlas, because of the number of parks, nature trails and lakes here. Really wish the city and Carbondale Tourism would make better use of them in its promotions. I have argued for positioning Carbondale as the entrance to Southern Illlinois Wine Country for years now but we get "All Ways Open" instead.

Tuesday, April 25, 2023

Job Opening

 The Carbondale Chamber of Commerce has a job opening for a marketing and office manager. Looking for someone with 2+ years of experience. Pay is $14-$15 per hour for what looks like a 40 hour week. Might be a good fit for someone retired who is looking for work and does not plan to leave the area. If they dropped the 2 years work experience requirement, the Chamber could likely hire a recent SIUC graduate, although not sure how long they would stay around.

Monday, April 24, 2023

Firearm Possession

 Do all firearms incidents have to take place between 2 and 4 in the morning? Maybe I am old but I would think people ought to be asleep at that hour rather than hiding backbacks with guns in them under cars before running into a house where the police are going to come question you about why you shoved a backpack under a car. Does the perpetration not think people would find it slightly suspicious that they shoved a backpack under a car before running off? However, I guess if they were smart, they would not have tried hiding something so obviously.

Thursday, April 20, 2023

Puppet Parade

 The All Species Puppet Parade takes place this Saturday. Line up at the Town Square Pavillion starts at 10 a.m. with the Parade starting at 10:30. half hour march to Attucks Park, then an Earth Day celebration from 11:30 to 2:30

Tuesday, April 18, 2023

Tower Road

 Looks as if Tower Road repair work will start tomorrow and wrap up early to middle of May. Hopefully, the city can patch some of the potholes on the hill on Chatauqua as they are deep enough to cause cars to swerve around.

Monday, April 17, 2023

Methodist Church Parking Lot

 I have noticed the Methodist Church at the corner of Main and Univeristy has taken to chaining off the entrances to its parking lot most Friday and Saturday nights. I figure they do not want a repeat of the shooting incident that took place last June when 200+ people gathered in the lot late Saturday night  and two people wound up shot. Carbondale Police still have a camera installed at the intersection focused on the lot and the church also has security cameras installed.

Sunday, April 16, 2023


 I thought part of the deal with the electric scooters was that Veo would assign a staff member to gather them up regularly and reloacte them to central pods. I did see a van with a Veo logo on it apparentlycollecting some on Washington Street by the glove factory last week but that is the only sign I have seen of Veo activity in the city.

I generally like the scooters. It is the people using them that are problems, not taking a few extra seconds to position them in locations out of the path of pediestrians or drivers for that matter.

Saturday, April 15, 2023

Power Outage

 According to this, Thursday night's power outage was caused by "damage to several Amerin substations". From what I have heard, the entire campus was out as well as areas of West Wall and Chatauqua, although power remaned on out in the Tower Road area.

Thursday, April 13, 2023

Building Teardown

 The city is in the process of tearing down the building on the southeast corner of Illinois and Walnut, the old Carbondale Cycle building. Right lanes of both Illinois and Walnut are closed at that location. First step in the process of creating the multi modal transport center.

Monday, April 10, 2023


 In case you are not going to Salukicon, Keep Carbondale Beautiful will have its spring cleanup from 9 a.m. to noon on April 22. Or you could help out at the cleanup in the morning and visit Salukicon in the afternoon. If you register, you get lunch and a free t-shirt. You may get them anyhow as the announcement says registration is not needed but registering is one way to make sure.

Saturday, April 8, 2023


 The city took over operations of the Superblock 5 months ago and announced this week it has secured a $500,000 grant to make the facility ADA compliant, improve fields and fences and add new restrooms and concession stands.

Rather suprised the facility was not ADA compliant to begin with as most facilites undergoing construction have to meed ADA standards, hence all the work on the downtown sidewalks.

Thursday, April 6, 2023

City Budget

 If you want to have a say on next year's city budget, either email you rcity council people or attend next tuesday's council meeting as the budget will get a public hearing then. Also on the consent agenda will be funding for various road projects for 2023 including Tower Road and Pleasent Hill Road.

Me, I want to make sure there are no plants to pass an ordinance maintianing the sales tax at its current level when the funding for the SIUC construction projects ends later this decade.

Tuesday, April 4, 2023

election Results

 With 100% of the precincts counted and 1988 votes from throughout the city, Carolin Harvey takes her seat as the city's new mayor with 81% of the vote. Unless something major happens with the votes from the last precinct, Adam Loos retains his seat on city council, while Lee Fronabarger and Thomas Grant lost their seats to Clare Killman and Nancy Maxwell.

turnout really stunk for a election determining city policy for the next 4 years. By my calcuations, less than 10% of the city's population bothered to come out to vote. 


 Polls close for Carbondale in about half an hour. I voted about 9:30 and had no one waiting ahead of me. I spoke with a couple of people that voted later in the day who said there were only a few people at their polling place at 1:30 p.m.  I am gonna bet that Harvey wins  the mayoral race and Loos, Fronabarger and Grant get re-elected to city council. Incumbency is very powerful, especially in a local race like this which will likely have less than 10% of elgible voters turn out. I would mention the other races on the ballot but given that all of the races were the same number of people running as there were open seats, it is a moot point.

Walter Wendler

Well, there is a name I hadn't heard from in at least five years.  Former SIUC President and director of the School of Architecture until 2015 Walter Wendler popped back up in the news this week. He has moved back to his original school as the President and got national attention when he  decided to cancel a student sponsored drag show, saything such shows degrade women. Lawsuit filed.

Sunday, April 2, 2023

Election Day

 Election Day for Carbondale is coming this Tuesday. Here is a link to the candidates for mayor and city council.  Candidates in bold below are running for another term. The current mayor Mike Henry opted not to seek another term but the mayor pro tem Caroline Harvey is running for the seat. Both she and Visser are first time candidates for the office.. Of the four "new" candidates for council, only Liechty has run for a seat before and I have not seen much in the way of public campaigning from any of them save for Loos, Zurlinden and Fronabarger.

Mayoral Candidates: 

Harold J. Visser, 800 Charles Road, Carbondale IL 62901

Carolin Harvey, 109 South Tower Road, Carbondale IL 62901 

City Council Candidates: 

Adam Loos, 512 West Pecan Street, Carbondale IL 62901

Clare Killman, 900 South Skyline Drive, Carbondale IL 62901

Justin Zurlinden, 600 West Oak Street, Carbondale, IL 62901

Lee M. Fronabarger, 1140 South Morningside Drive, Carbondale IL 62901

Nancy Maxwell, 1408 Bobette Lane, Carbondale, IL 62901

Thomas Grant, 5370 Springer Ridge Road, Carbondale IL 62902 

Joshua Dalton Liechty, 933 West Walnut Street, Carbondale IL 62901

Thursday, March 30, 2023

Bost Reply on Guns

 Emailed Rep. Bost about the recent shootings and legislation in Congress. Here is his response:

"Thank you for contacting me regarding your views on gun control in response to recent shootings. I appreciate hearing from you and learning your views. 

   The heartbreaking attack on Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas has made clear that more can and should be done to prevent senseless acts of violence in communities across America. I was proud to introduce legislation in 2018 making grants available for emergency communication systems, security equipment, emergency training for teachers, and campus resource officers to make classrooms safer.  Since becoming law, the legislation has helped school districts in Southern Illinois secure nearly $3 million dollars in grant funding.

   More recently, I cosponsored a bill to increase funding for school resource officers and mental health guidance counselors. I also support legislation that would allow K-12 schools to better adapt their plans for federal funds for addressing immediate school safety needs. 

   As a father and a grandfather, I want to ensure that our communities have the resources to secure our schools and address the mental health issues that often are the starting point for atrocities like these. I believe we can address these serious challenges without infringing upon the rights of law-abiding American citizens. 

   I do not believe that creating more government regulation and new gun control laws will stop the criminal misuse of firearms. Criminals don’t intend to follow these laws regardless. Please know that I appreciate the deeply held beliefs on both sides of this issue. Regardless of where we stand, we all want what’s best for the safety of our communities and I am committed to doing my part to achieve common sense solutions. 

    Once again, thank you for contacting me. If I can be of further assistance to you on this or any other matter, please do not hesitate to contact me. I also invite you to visit my website at  or follow me on Facebook ( and Twitter (@RepBost). "

Wednesday, March 29, 2023

Advance Auto Parts

 Looks as if there is some work being done on the long empty Advance Auto Parts building on East Main. Lights were on inside and saw some construction vehicles parked outside.

Tuesday, March 28, 2023

Scam Alert

Carbondale City Police posted a scam alert on their FB page. I imagine it is on the police website as well. Someone is calling employees, claiming there is a deposit shortage and that the employee will be arrested unless they take money from the business and purchase pre-paid credit cards. I hope no-one will still fall for such a scam but I figure someone will. No reputable orgainzation is going to call and ask for pre-paid anything to deal with a legal situation. Body of the post is below:

Business Scam Investigation

Carbondale – On 03-15-23 City of Carbondale police officers responded to a business in Carbondale in reference to a theft by deception report.   Officers learned an unknown suspect called the business claiming to be a member of law enforcement investigating a deposit shortage.  The caller instructed the employee to pay for the shortage or face legal action.  The employee was instructed to take money owned by the business and use it to purchase pre-paid credit cards.  

The Police Department received similar reports from two other businesses since this initial investigation.   The police department encourages employers to educate their employees about scams of this nature.  Employees should never provide account information over the telephone.  Any businesses who may have become a victim of this scam or anyone with questions about scam prevention is encourage to call the police department at (618) 549-2121.  The investigation into the incident is active and ongoing.

Anyone with information about this incident is encouraged to contact the City of Carbondale Police Department at (618) 549-2121. You may also call the Carbondale/SIU Crime Stoppers anonymous tip line at (618) 549-COPS (2677) or the Murphysboro/Jackson County anonymous tip line at (618) 687-COPS (2677). Anonymous tips may also be made by selecting the “Crime Stoppers” tab located on the main page of this website. Please help yourself, along with your county, its communities and the university campus by using these numbers if you witness, or have any information pertaining to, a crime. Cash rewards for information which leads to an arrest are also made anonymously. Remember, crime doesn’t pay, but Crime Stoppers does!

The mission of the Carbondale Police Department is to work in partnership with our community to preserve life, protect human rights, protect property and improve quality of life by providing police service to all in a fair, sensitive, and professional manner.