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Learn to cook vegetarian Ethiopian food

In my highly unscientific polling of friends, Ethiopian food is often first or second on the list of "restaurants/cuisines/foods I wish were in C-U." Common Ground Food Co-op is offering a Vegetarian Ethiopian Cuisine class ($10 owners/$15 non-owners) on Saturday, September 23rd from 2 to 4:30 p.m.

Here's the description:

In this class, Tesfaye will guide you through the preparation of a vegetarian dish containing lentils and vegetables, paired with traditional Ethiopian bread, injera. Born in Ethiopia and a scholar of anthropology, he will also discuss the cultural, topographical, and historical elements that have shaped and influenced contemporary Ethiopian cuisine.

This one's bound to fill up quickly, so register online here, or in the store. 

Photo by Jim Singer. 


U of I announces a shift to a single logo

Today the University of Illinois announced that they will be returning to the use of a single logo, the orange block "I" that has been used for much of it's history. In 1997, nonathletic units began using the column "I". That will now be phased out in favor of a singular block "I" logo. 

Chancellor Robert J. Jones is doing this in an effort to strengthen the Illinois brand. Is it a waste of money? A smart marketing decision? Can't say I have huge feelings on it, but I don't have any column "I" letterhead, nor do I have to go around and change all the signs on campus. You can read more about the reasoning at the Illinois New Bureau.


U of I Housing shares move-in day traffic re-routes, road closures

The University of Illinois is back in session soon for the fall 2017 semester, and students are moving back gradually of course — but move in day is officially August 24th. Be prepared, if you're going to be around campus. 

The U of I Housing team has shared some info, plus this map that provides re-routes and road closures that you might find helpful.


Champaign County Circuit Clerk to launch new website, e-filing

The Clerk of the Circuit Court for the Sixth Judicial Circuit, Champaign County, Katie M. Blakeman has proudly announced her office’s plan to go live with a new website this Thursday, August 10, 2017.

“After more than a year’s worth of work, user surveys, focus groups, and usability testing, we are finally ready to launch!” says Blakeman.

The new website will include a new and improved public access system, real-time court docket entry updates, all case type lookup by an individual’s name, docket sheet printing, and the ability to search cases by court calendars, courtrooms, judges, attorneys, names, or case numbers.

Accessibility improvements include ADA compliance with all pages and non-English language access provided by Google Translate. 

Additionally, Champaign Co. joins courts statewide with permissive civil e-filing (see the full statewide court e-filing list here). This process is likely to go to mandatory e-filing for civil cases on January 1, 2018 for all court users (including self-represented litigants, unless the Court delays this new rule).

E-Filing for criminal cases is likely to follow, although no formal dates have been announced.

More information on Court E-Filing in Illinois here.

30 Things to Know About E-Filing Changes in Illinois by Mark C. Palmer


Rep. Carol Ammons shares which bills she’s supporting

Representative Carol Ammons recently shared an email detailing the work she's doing in the Illinois General Assembly, including the bills she is supporting or co-sponsoring. Whether you agree with her stances or not, transparency is good, and so is staying informed about how your rep is voting. See her statement below and follow the link to see the rest of the newsletter.

Recently the budget and school funding have held most of our attention, as they should, but there is a lot more happening at the State Capital.

I believe that compromise is a necessary part of the lawmaking process. That is why I voted to pass SB6, a balanced, bipartisan budget plan that cuts nearly $3 billion in state bureaucracy, and invests our finite resources in critical services like Meals on Wheels, domestic violence shelters, breast cancer screenings and other services that middle-class families, the elderly and our most vulnerable rely on. I'm proud to say the General Assembly worked cooperatively to put people over politics and to end the state’s budget impasse.

It is my hope that this email will help you stay in touch with your government. As your representative, I believe in the importance of public service. If there's anything my office can do to assist you, please don't hesitate to contact me.

Here for service,


Illini Basketball releases non-conference schedule

Earlier this week, we reported that Illini Men's Basketball had released their Big Ten schedule, which looked scary if you've ever been an Illini fan before. Of course every action produces an equal and opposite reaction, and today we get the full list of the U of I's non-conference opponents, which leaves much to be desired.

Included on this year's pre-Big Ten schedule are Wake Forest (as part of the ACC/Big Ten Challenge), Depaul, MIssouri New Mexico State and a couple of schools that I'm pretty sure aren't even in Division 1. Either way, it looks like we should at least be able to win a handful of games this year (something an Illini fan should never utter).

To check out the full schedule, see below:


Krannert Art Museum launches new website, makes exhibitions viewable online

For the artistically-inclined of Champaign-Urbana, the University of Illinois' Krannert Art Museum has unleashed a new website today, which is packed with new, never-before-utilized features for the museum, including the ability to view the museum's entire collection online.

To get the full run-down, check out the press release below:

Krannert Art Museum Launches Expanded Website
Provides Online Access to Artwork Collection

Champaign, Ill., August 2, 2017—Krannert Art Museum at the University of Illinois (KAM) has recently launched an expanded, redesigned website,, that opens online access to the museum’s panoramic collection of art to students, researchers, and online visitors.

The redesigned website will enable visitors to learn more about the museum’s collection galleries and institutional history, give teachers resources to bring art into their classrooms and learn more about the public engagement program Krannert Art Museum—Week at the Museum, and give students and art researchers access to original curatorial research related to exhibitions at KAM.

Online visitors will also be able to do something new: search the art collection through the museum website.

“As the second-largest general fine arts museum in the state of Illinois and a major cultural institution on campus, we strongly believe it is important to make the art collection as accessible as possible. Building the means to access the collection online is an important part of that,” said Kathleen Harleman, Museum Director and Interim Dean of the College of Fine and Applied Arts. “Online visitors will have access to the breadth of work we do in teaching, conservation, and research as a top academic art museum at
the University of Illinois.”

Kimberly Sissons, Collection Manager at the museum, was instrumental in the behind the scenes work required to put the collection online. “Each record needs to be checked over to make certain its data displays correctly and is searchable to users. At launch we have around 2,700 works of art accessible via the web, which is more than 25 percent of the collection. It’s a good start, and we will continue to build on it.”

An added feature for museum donors is an expanded Support section, which highlights the experiences of museum volunteers and students who get involved at KAM, as well as the support the museum receives from external funders and university partners, including the College of Fine and Applied Arts at Illinois. “We will continue to develop tools, in order to make it easier to give online,” said Director of Development Brenda Nardi. “We also plan to begin telling the stories of a variety of our devoted patrons and of those who
give their time and talent to KAM in hope of inspiring giving at every level. We want our students, alumni, and friends to get a real sense of the impact they can and do make.

The new website, which has been in preparation for two years, builds on information available in the previous format, which at the time of its creation (1993), was the first art museum website in the United States. Accessibility and responsiveness are important aspects of the new design.

Julia Nucci Kelly, Communications and Marketing Coordinator for the museum, managed the project from start to finish. “We started with research into the current site, to see what worked and what needed improvement. The new site will enable museum visitors, whether they are students or alumni or community members, to see the range of our work as an academic art museum. We hope it will inspire learning, exploration, research, and visits to see the artwork in person.”

New features of include:

  • Overviews of all collection galleries, including the Bow and Trees Galleries, the Decorative Arts collection, Art of the Ancient Mediterranean and Art of Ancient Peru, and the award-winning Encounters: The Arts of Africa;
  • Access to exhibition portfolios and more than 2,700 works of art in the permanent collection, the number of which will continue to grow;
  • A growing collection of artist profiles, conservation articles, provenance
  • information, and original curatorial research, available online for the first time, including images of artwork and a growing library of KAM-produced videos;
  • A search interface powerful enough to enable online visitors to search website content and the artwork database in a single place (as an added feature, Advanced Search of the collection, to facilitate more targeted research);
  • A clean, responsive design that works well in all browsers and devices, making it easy to explore the site and share content via social media.

Kelly commented that the project benefitted from the expertise and collaboration of the museum staff and willing participation by KAM’s members and friends, including those who provided comments during the research and testing phases. “It has been a long process, but well worth it,” she added. The museum will continue to publish content to all portions of the new site over the coming months. “We invite everyone to visit and
explore. Each time you visit, you can learn something new.” Design and Development James Goggin and Shan James of Practise ( designed the new site.

The firm also designs the print materials and exhibition catalogues for KAM. Recent design collaborations include catalogues for MetaModern (2015), Zina Saro-Wiwa: Did You Know We Taught Them How to Dance? (2016), and for the upcoming exhibition World on the Horizon: Swahili Arts Across the Indian Ocean, opening August 31, 2017.

Site development was completed locally by the team at Surface 51
(, and the museum’s ongoing partner on the collection database project is Gallery Systems (


U of I drops to No. 14 party school in the United States

And now for a subject that will inevitably make longtime Champaign-Urbana residents roll their eyes: the Princeton Review's annual party school rankings.

If you may remember, In 2015, the U of I took home first place in the rankings, which appear to have no basis in respectable logic of any kind. This year, however, our beloved Illini drop to the 14th position in the annual rankings. Bummer. Guess we're gonna have to throw some super crazy ragers to get our stats back up.

Also, we lost to Maine...


To read the full rankings, check out the list below and the article here.

Princeton Review’s Top 20 Party Schools Of 2018:

1. Tulane University

2. West Virginia University

3. Bucknell University

4. Syracuse University

5. University of Wisconsin-Madison

6. University of Delaware

7. University of Colorado-Boulder

8.  Colgate University

9. Lehigh University

10. University of Maine

11. University of Iowa

12. University of California, Santa Barbara

13. University of Mississippi

14. University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

15. University of Vermont

16. University of Rhode Island

17. University of Florida

18. Wake Forest University

19. University of Kansas

20. University of Alabama


Champaign votes to establish police review subcommittee

According to The News-Gazette, the Champaign City Council unanimously voted last night to establish a subcommittee whose role it is to look into complaints about the police.

This comes after years of negotiation, with the final number of committee members landing on five, and open to everyone, including convicted felons. Those interested in applying should keep their eyes peeled on the City of Champaign's website here.

The Champaign Police Department could use the help of civilian oversight if recent events are any indication. Abusive officers (Matt Rush, etc.) have been allowed to stay on the force, even when their use of excessive force is well-documented. This summer, an officer without a body cam "slipped," and shot an unarmed suspect in the shoulder in North Champaign.

For more info, read the full News-Gazette piece here.