Illinois artist of the month: Yvonne HamYvonne Ham is a contemporary realist portrait and landscape artist. Ham was born in Peoria in 1962 and currently lives and works in rural Elmwood.

Ham’s artwork reflects her fondness for family and interest in her local community. She is drawn to the people and events in everyday life. Impressions of events can be forgotten, and she hopes that through touching brush to canvas she stirs an emotional memory for the viewer.

Ham, an award winning artist, is a member of the Portrait Society of America. She is an associate member of Oil Painters of America, The Peoria Art Guild, Illinois Art League, Contemporary Art Center and the Galesburg Civic Art Center. She worked as the president of the Illinois Art League serving from 2005 through 2007.

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Illinois reformer made history on this day in 1924Florence Fifer Bohrer, a resident of Bloomington, made history on this day in 1924 by announcing her candidacy to the state senate, an election she would win, making her the first woman elected to the Illinois State Senate. Bohrer was born in 1877 and was the daughter of Illinois Governor Joseph Fifer, who served from 1889 until 1893.

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Fun in the snowThe snow may be coming down, and the cold may be keeping you in doors. Perhaps you are starting to feel a bit stir crazy all cooped up inside, and the fresh glow of the fire place doesn’t seem to shine as bright. Well, winter doesn’t have to feel so blue. Illinois is filled with fun and exciting things to do despite that snowy, cold weather.

Here are just a handful of ideas.

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Honoring Martin Luther King, Jr. through service

“Life’s most persistent and urgent question is, ‘What are you doing for others?’”
– Martin Luther King, Jr.

Martin Luther King, Jr. dedicated his life to advancing civil rights and justice for African-Americans and other marginalized groups throughout the United States. On Monday, the country will pause to honor his legacy with events scheduled from coast to coast.

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This week is National Pizza Week and we want to celebrate Illinois pizza. It is no secret Illinois has mastered the art of pizza making. The Chicago deep dish is a prime example, but there are great places to grab a slice throughout the state. Here are 10 of the best pizza joints in Illinois.

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