Opening Arguments Scheduled Today in Starke County Murder Trial

 The state will begin presenting its case today against the Knox man who is accused of killing his estranged wife, kidnapping an employee from Mark Bailey’s Discount Center and stealing a car from a couple in English Lake. Gary Chavez is on trial for murder, kidnapping and carjacking in connection with the June 6, 2014 incidents. His trial started yesterday with jury selection, which took the entire day. Continue reading

Hamlet Officials Dedicate New Fire Station

11794323_10152362071954979_1747605804613823603_oThe crowd of area residents that gathered for the Grand Opening of the “James R. Hardesty Hamlet Davis Township Volunteer Fire Station and Community Center” Sunday afternoon at the new building was both pleased and proud.

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Starke Election Board to Review Polling Place Change in Hamlet

Hamlet Fire StationThe Town of Hamlet wants to move their polling site to a newly constructed facility.

During Monday morning’s Starke County Election Board meeting, the request was reviewed. The Election Board says that although Hamlet has already voted on the move, the change must also be approved at the County level.
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Senator Decries Legislature’s “Education Session”

Senator Jim Arnold

Senator Jim Arnold

A local lawmaker says the recently completed session of the Indiana General Assembly was the most trying and most contentious of his nine-year legislative career. Gov. Mike Pence touted it as the education session. Sen. Jim Arnold, D-LaPorte, agrees this year’s 2.2 percent increase in school funding and next year’s 2.5 percent hike are the largest increases in education funding in history.

“It sounds very good. The downside of that is that the vast majority of our increased money now is going to vouchers and going to charter schools, not going to public school systems,” Arnold recently told the Starke County Council and Commissioners. “The big winners of this are going to be the urban schools. The rural schools such as Knox are going to be the big losers.” Continue reading

Calling All Farmers Interested in Getting Involved with the Community

FSAIf you know someone interested in serving on a local Indiana Farm Service Agency County Committee, now is the time to submit that person’s name as a nominee for the 2015 County Committee Elections. Act fast because you only have until the beginning of August to submit your nomination. Continue reading

DNR Makes Some Changes to Campground Fees

campingDue to the increase in campground operating costs, the Department of Natural Resources Division of Fish and Wildlife must raise their campground fees. The increase in fees will allow operations and maintenance to continue at Glendale, J.E. Roush Lake, and Willow Slough Fish & Wildlife Areas. Continue reading

Kersting’s-sponsored MDA Ride Touted as Tremendous Success

Harley group (1)

Sheriff Jeff Richwine and Road Captain Jerry Hedger

This year’s charitable motorcycle ride sponsored by the North Judson Kersting’s Cycle Center was a success. The Pulaski County Sheriff’s Office extended a congratulatory thanks to the Kankakee Valley chapter 1326 of the Harley Owners Group for raising nearly $700 for the Muscular Dystrophy Association. Continue reading

Starke County Officials Seeking Redevelopment Commission Candidates

starke-county-courthouseStarke County officials are looking for members to serve on the long-dormant county redevelopment commission by appointing new members. It was established in 2006 to oversee a tax increment financing district set up by the county as part of the effort to bring Sysco to Hamlet. Continue reading

Kids Closet Ministry’s Pack-A-Backpack Event is Back!

pack a backpackStarke County students who receive either free or reduced lunch during the school year have a chance to receive a backpack full of free supplies tonight or tomorrow at the North Judson United Methodist Church fellowship hall. Continue reading

Explore South Dakota With Kankakee Valley Broadcasting

News Contributor, Ed Hasnerl

Ed Hasnerl

Enjoy the beauty of the Black Hills, Badlands and more on a six-day, five-night trip with Kankakee Valley Broadcasting. Travel coordinator Ed Hasnerl has a few last-minute seats available for next month’s motorcoach trip to South Dakota. The bus will leave early Aug. 17 from Knox and return on the 22nd. Continue reading

Yellowstone Trail Pageant Deadline Approaching

pageant

Time is running out to sign-up for the 6th annual Yellowstone Pageant. The deadline to submit your entry form and fee is tomorrow. To qualify for the pageant you must live or attend school in Starke County. The event will be held outdoors, rain or shine, at 1 pm on August 15th in the Starke County Fairgrounds.

The fee for entry is $35. There is a discount for siblings who enter the competition, it is $20 for each additional sister. Contestants will need to have clothes for both, the dress-wear and back-to-school portions of pageant. Competitors will be divided into four different age categories. The youngest group will be kids 5 to 8, the next group will be children 9 to 12, teens 13 to 16 will compete together and the oldest group will be ladies 17 to 21.

In order to be considered for the crown you must be unmarried, without children and not pregnant. During your reign you are asked to remain tobacco and alcohol free. They encourage you to keep your grades in good standing. Winners are expected to ride in the parade on the following day and will be required to meet with Director, Tara Parks, following the pageant for details about what other festival event they will be required to attend.

For further information, the director of the pageant Tara Parks can be reached at (574)-806-3939 or gotpageantry@hotmail.com. In order to get your entry form visit yellowstonetrailfest.com and make sure to turn it in by the deadline tomorrow!

State Still Short of FEMA Damage Qualification Threshold

Indiana Department of Homeland SecurityBusinesses, individual and nonprofit organizations whose property has sustained damages as a result of recent flooding and storms have a few more days to report uninsured damage to the state. Doing so is a first step to see if Indiana may qualify for federal disaster assistance funds. Continue reading

Indiana State Police Post Adds K-9

Indiana State Police Master Trooper Steve Caylor and his K-9 partner, Nikan

Indiana State Police Master Trooper Steve Caylor and his K-9 partner, Nikan

The newest addition to the Indiana State Police Lowell post has four legs and a tail. Master Trooper Steve Caylor and his K-9 partner, Nikan, are graduates of the 2015 ISP K-9 Class. Caylor has been with the department for almost 20 years. Nikan is an 18 month old Malinherd, which is a cross between a Belgian Malinois and a German Shepherd. Continue reading

Free Dental Exams Available for Uninsured Children

toothChildren without dental insurance can get a free back-to-school checkup at the Indiana University Health LaPorte Dental Center. Appointments are required. During the screening, a dentist will do a visual exam and create a dental map of the child’s teeth and diagnose any problems or decay. Referrals will be given for follow-up care as needed. Continue reading

Kids Closet Receives a Plethora of Supplies for Upcoming Back-to-School Event

pack a backpackKids Closet Ministry annually provides school supplies to underprivileged children in Starke County with their Pack-a-Backpack event. Community members get the chance to contribute during their school supply drives. This year while Kids Closet was posted outside the Dollar General stores in North Judson and Knox they received an ample amount of supplies from weekend shoppers. However it was the donations from two other local foundations that helped provide the new backpacks for all the donated supplies. Continue reading

IU Health Offers Helpful Services at LifePlex in Plymouth

IU-HealthMost people in the area are aware of the fact that LifePlex has fitness equipment, aquatic activities and personal training, but did you know that IU Health also bases some helpful health services out of the establishment? IU Health offers urgent care, imaging and a diagnostic center right in LifePlex. Continue reading