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Home sales show improvement in Q2

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'Tis the season for home sales, so the Peoria Area Association of Realtors wants you to sell your home.

Sales were up slightly in the second quarter, the association reported Tuesday, but inventory is down and agents are looking for more houses to go on the market and take advantage of buyers entering the market. Inventory of available homes is off 18.3 percent from last year, PAAR said.

"We need more inventory. We can't sell what...

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The Pere Marquette is back in grand fashion

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The Grand Lady is back, but for all the cosmetic surgery she received over the last year or so she isn't easily recognizable.

But EM Properties and the Marriott Corp. are ready for people to come see the refurbished Hotel Pere Marquette, which officially reopened at 3 p.m. on Friday.

But as remarkable as the hotel is now, this beauty goes well beyond skin deep. It has entirely new organs, as well, because hotel owner Gary Matthews,...

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Riverfront Museum restructures operations

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A restructuring of operations at the Peoria Riverfront Museum that took effect last week was done so the facility and its staff can best serve their clients, the public, museum CEO Jim Richerson said Tuesday.

The restructuring, which included the elimination of some positions — four gone, two created for a net change of two fewer positions — and the merging of two departments, will improve effectiveness and efficiency while bringing...

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All-America City award 'truly, truly' a treasure

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It was a truly, truly warm sun beating down Wednesday during a news conference to celebrate Peoria's selection as an All-America City for 2013.

That helped boost the warmth of the reception given those who made it happen as a sizable crowd turned out on the riverfront to cheer the award that was bestowed Sunday at a National Civic League event in Denver.

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Peoria an All-America City finalist

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If the energy and enthusiasm of the Young Professionals of Greater Peoria group is an indication, there is little wonder Peoria fared well in the early rounds of the All-America City competition.

And now that Peoria is a finalist for the 2013 award, an honor in and of itself, city leaders feel good about the chances it will bring home its fourth All-America City Award in June.

"How can you not listen to this and see the energy...

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All-America City win 'impressive and incredible'

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It was a tense evening in Denver on Sunday as members of Peoria's All-America City delegation waited to learn if their months of hard work would pay off.

One by one the National Civic League jury that determined the 10 cities that would earn the All-America City designation named the winners and not in any certain order. One by one, as Peoria was not named, the anxiety for the local delegation grew.

After the ninth city was named,...

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Use Social Media for Urgent Announcements about Flooding

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If you run a business in the Peoria riverfront area, or any flooded...

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Watson: Honor Flight's Memorable Trip (Part 3)

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Editor's note: Doc Watson was aboard the inaugural Greater Peoria Honor Flight that took 81 veterans to Washington, D.C. on Tuesday, June 4. He wrote a series of articles about the trip, including photos, for his employer's website, www.955glo.com, and is sharing them with readers of The Peoria. This is the third and final installment.

As one of two media members on the initial trip that sent area military veterans...

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Baseball, BBQs and Baby Ducks: Our Favorite Things about Spring

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It’s officially (technically?) spring here in Peoria and as we sit at The Peorian offices gazing out our windows at life renewing itself once again, two things leap to the forefront of our thoughts. First is that undeniable, aching desire to get outside and DO SOMETHING. Second is how badly these windows need to be cleaned.* So in the spirit of this annual return to bloom, we asked our murder of writers what spring means to...

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Watson: Honor Flight's Memorable Trip (Part 2)

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Over the years when I've promoted a military event on radio or TV, I've debated whether to call the former soldiers veterans or heroes. I've decided that, even if they didn't serve during a time of war, the term heroes is justified. When they volunteer today, they don't know what the future holds. No one knows when or where our military will be called upon. Many of the veterans we easily describe as "heroes" – guys who fought courageously on...

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Wildlife Prairie State Park opens Saturday with free admission

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wildlifeWildlife Prairie State Park will open for the season at 9 a.m. Saturday, with free admission all day.

The kick-off event for the season is called The Spring Wake-Up: Butterflies, Birds, and Bears! Oh, My! and it will include a sneak peek of what's new at the park this spring and summer.

"Join a guided hike and be "in...

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Watson: Honor Flight's Memorable Trip (Part 1)

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Editor's note: Doc Watson was aboard the inaugural Greater Peoria Honor Flight that took 81 veterans to Washington, D.C. on Tuesday, June 4, as a guardian. He is writing a series of articles, and including photos he took, for his employer's website, www.955glo.com, and is sharing them with readers of The Peorian. The articles will appear first on the WGLO site.

The...

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Community Solar System moving, growing

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sunThe center of the universe has moved about four miles south. The rest of the planets in our solar system will have to move accordingly.

But at least one won't have to stop for gas to find Earth.

It may take until next fall before it's finished, but Sheldon Schafer is confident it will be...

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Honor Flight was priceless for veterans

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Getting the inaugural Greater Peoria Honor Flight off the ground on Tuesday took a whole lot of dollars and dimes, its chief organizer said.

But to the 81 veterans who made the trip, it was priceless.

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Does Spring still mean Great Junk for Kids?

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wax-lipsSunday's twin harbingers of Spring – the return of Daylight Savings Time and the expected snow melt –provoke a question from a childish mind of a Baby Boomer: do 21st century kids still have wonderful crap marketed to them when weather warms?

Kites!

Recent snows have seemed like Christmas in March, but surely there...

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Putting the Dozer in Dozer Park

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On Wednesday morning at Dozer Park, everyone was on the move, from the children participating in baseball camp on the field to the staff and crew scurrying about getting the stadium ready for the day’s game. However, that all came to a stop around 10:45 a.m. when the roar of an antique Cat dozer echoed through the stadium.

That’s when, just off the third base side of the field, Kent Bates of the Antique Caterpillar Machinery Owners...

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Save the Madison!

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B.B. King and Ray Charles played there. So did Fiona Apple and the Smashing Pumpkins. And don’t forget Run DMC and John Mayall. Then again, so did Creed, Slayer and Insane Clown Posse. Over the years, the Madison Theater has played host to some of the most talented musicals acts in the world – along with Creed, Slayer and Insane Clown Posse. But having said that,: the theater played no favorites, bringing in acts that Peorians wanted to see...

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Bookmobile returning to the road

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The Peoria Public Library Bookmobile will soon be back in service after more than five months off the road because of library budget problems, the library announced Friday.

The library said the Bookmobile will resume running Monday, June 10 and will run a summer schedule through Aug. 30. The fall and winter schedules are not yet set, said Trisha Noack, manager of public relations for Peoria Public Library.

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Home sales rebounded in 2012

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Real estate sales in the Peoria area ended a six-year slide in 2012 as they gained 16.8 percent over 2011, according to numbers released by the Peoria Area Association of Realtors.

Peoria was part of a national recovery in home sales, the association said, as average and median prices also were higher in 2012 over the previous year.

There were 4,912 homes sold in 2012 in the area covered by PAAR, an increase from 4,206 sold in...

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In Brief: All-American City video viewing; Dozer Park ceremony

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All-American City video viewing

allcity-logoThe public is invited to view the video shot last week that will be part of Peoria's All-American City competition package.

The video will be shown at 9 a.m. Monday, June 3, in the Giant Screen...

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A survivor's story: What Jim Maloof means to her

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A two-time survivor of one of the most devestating forms of childhood leukemia knew Jim Maloof in a different way than most of us.

His...

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