Peoria Public Radio News

Local news stories and features from Peoria Public Radio.

Cass Herrington / Peoria Public Radio

Twenty-two high school students received bright yellow reflective vests for their new summer job.  

Vega Family Serves Up Mexican Ice Cream, Culture

Jun 5, 2017
Cass Herrington / Peoria Public Radio

A new Mexican popsicle shop opened in Peoria in time for peak ice cream season. But its signature offering isn’t on the menu yet.

Tamie Yost

Congresswoman Cheri Bustos says she is disappointed with the President’s decision to withdraw the U.S. from the Paris Climate Agreement. She says The President’s suggesting of a re-negotiation for the accord is a phony argument:

Tanya Koonce

Goodwill Industries hosted a job fair this morning morning. The event offered those attending 37 different employers, some of them interviewing and hiring on the spot.

Peoria City Council to Hold Strategy Session

Jun 2, 2017

The City of Peoria faces significant challenges with operational expenses growing at four-to-eight percent. That’s coupled with no corresponding growth in revenues, which remain stagnant. Council members are meeting over a two-day period to determine the strategic direction for the city under those financial constraints. Mayor Jim Ardis says he believes that will not include any tax increases.

A Bradley University game design team is getting a chance to put their creation on one of the world's largest gaming stages.

The Peoria Area World Affairs Council and the Peoria Riverfront Museum are hosting a special screening and discussion of the film called “America’s Diplomats.”

Magali Banda Vega / Flickr/Creative Commons

Sunnier weather means the return of outdoor markets in Peoria. And a new al fresco shopping experience starting this weekend in the Warehouse District is catered toward the local Hispanic community. But event co-organizer Cesar Vargas says the markets, called Tianguis, aim to bring together both Hispanics and non-Hispanics.

PIA Prepares New U.S. Customs Office

Jun 1, 2017
Tanya Koonce / Peoria Public Radio

The Peoria International Airport is preparing to make the U.S. Customs and Border Protection office operational in the new international terminal.

Jen Marshall Duncan / Flickr/Creative Commons

The Community Conversation on Race in Peoria continues this week with more small working group meetings.

Peoria Public Radio

If the President’s budget passes in its current form, the US stands to lose its prestige as a world leader in agriculture research.

Services Mark Memorial Day in the Region

May 29, 2017
Tanya Koonce / Peoria Public Radio

Communities across the country celebrated Memorial Day over the extended weekend. Those in the greater Peoria region have also paused for services between Saturday and Monday.


The annual service on the Peoria Riverfront at the Gateway Building included a number of community leaders and the municipal band that's celebrating 80 years of music this year.


Some elements of the service included the Armed Forces Salute as well as a rifle salute, and the lone trumpeter playing Taps.


22-Year-Old Man Killed During Memorial Day Weekend

May 29, 2017
Wikimedia Commons

A 22-year-old Peoria man was shot and killed over the weekend.

Cass Herrington / Peoria Public Radio

Democratic gubernatorial candidate and billionaire businessman JB Pritzker campaigned in Peoria Fri. to distinguish himself from another wealthy Illinoisan -- Gov. Bruce Rauner.

Fred Zwicky / Peoria Journal Star

Attorneys representing Cleve Heidelberg are pushing back against a request by the Illinois Attorney General’s office to end a review of his case.

This Weekend: Ceremonies Honor Soldiers for Memorial Day

May 25, 2017
United States Navy / Wikimedia Commons

Several communities in the Peoria area are commemorating veterans this weekend, in honor of Memorial Day.

Google Maps

Peoria City Council okayed two amendments to extend funding for land acquisition and engineering work on the Pioneer Parkway extension.

Cleve Heidelberg Released After 47 Years

May 22, 2017
Cass Herrington / Peoria Public Radio

When Cleve Heidelberg woke up in his jail cell Monday morning, he didn’t know he’d be stepping outside hours later in civilian clothing. In fact, Heidelberg was notified just minutes before that he’d be released, for the first time in 47 years.

Two judges in Illinois say a new pilot program aimed at ensuring minorities are well represented in local jury pools will be "revolutionary."  

Cass Herrington / Peoria Public Radio

The daughter of a World War II veteran who died 47 years ago has finally received her father’s Purple Heart.

Dave Dunford / Wikimedia Commons

EAST PEORIA, Ill. (AP) - The city of East Peoria is donating items to Habitat for Humanity that were salvaged from seven households that were condemned following landslides four years ago.

University of Minnesota

A Peoria writer is coming home this weekend to discuss her first book that centers on black female representation in the US.

Terrion Williamson, a South Side native and graduate of Manual Academy, wrote the cultural critique “Scandalize My Name: Black Feminist Practice and the Making of Black Social Life.” The book analyzes pop culture, literature -- and it even includes narratives about growing up in Peoria. 

Jeremy Johnson / Wikimedia Commons

PEORIA, Ill. (AP) - The World Taxidermy and Fish Carving Championships trade show has drawn far-flung enthusiasts to Peoria.

Tazewell County Teens Learn to Drive for Life

May 19, 2017
Tanya Koonce / Peoria Public Radio

  More than 100 Tazewell County teens went through the Ford Driving Skills for Life training Thursday at the Army National Guard Base in Peoria.

Peoria Public Radio's Tanya Koonce reports, it was the 10th anniversary of the initiative in Tazewell County after 15 teens were killed in car accidents in 15 months.


Jim Graham is the Global Manager of Ford Driving Skills for Life. He was in Tazewell County when the program was introduced and returned Thursday.

Attorneys for former U.S. Rep. Aaron Schock have asked a federal judge to reschedule his trial, citing evidence delays in a case centered on the Republican's alleged lavish spending.  Defense attorney George J. Terwilliger asked that the trial set for July be delayed until January. Terwilliger says the government hasn't handed over all evidence and Schock will likely file more motions.

Cass Herrington / Peoria Public Radio

A row of pristine, white bicycles is stationed outside Peoria City Hall, ahead of Friday’s official launch of a bike share service.

Peoria Historical Society Unveils New Logo

May 18, 2017
Peoria Historical Society / Facebook

There’s a new look for the Peoria Historical Society. For the first time in 83 years, the Society has unveiled a new logo. It replicates the lower left portion of the old Peoria County Courthouse clock. The logo was designed by the Simantel Group and suggests movement through time.


Pekin Boy Still Missing Without a Trace

May 17, 2017
H. Wayne Wilson / Peoria Public Radio

It was six months ago when Robert Bee of Pekin went missing. Family and friends marked the occasion with an evening vigil at Pekin’s Riverfront Park.

District 87 Superintendent Barry Reilly calls the news absolutely deplorable that there is a web site that offers trading of nude photos purportedly of Bloomington High School students.

Tanya Koonce / Peoria Public Radio

The City of East Peoria is working with a strategic planning consultant that has a track record in the state.