• Hillsboro food store closing

    Heartland Foods in Hillsboro is closing at the end of the year, and Valery Schmidt is making alternative plans. Schmidt loaded a frozen turkey into her truck on Sunday, shrugged and said that the closing of Heartland Foods at the end of the year means she’ll do more shopping at Dale’s Supermarket, which is where she does most of her shopping anyway.

  • Fire damages Hillsboro home

    A wood-burning stove is suspected of starting a fire that gutted the living room of a Jefferson St. house on Thursday. Hillsboro Fire Chief Ben Steketee and a state fire marshal sifted through the burned room at 214 Jefferson St. Friday looking for clues. Steketee’s initial impressions led him to suspect the stove, but the fire marshal found an alternative explanation, he said.

  • Not everyone gets Christmas off

    For those working over the holidays, there’s plenty at stake. “I prefer not to work Christmas Eve. That’s for family,” said Linda Church, who operates the register at Ampride in Marion. “Working New Year’s Eve is not a big deal.”

  • Gingerbread for the head

    First grade teachers Michelle Adkins and Staci Hansen are in the second year of using gingerbread houses to educate students with an engineering-focused STEM project. “Kids really enjoy the STEM projects,” Adkins said. “They get to discover things on their own through hands-on learning and creative problem solving.”

  • 'Santa' shows up on naughty list

    Was Santa on an undercover mission checking his naughty and nice list last week in Hillsboro? Maybe so. Police don’t know, but they think it is possible.

  • 'Sniper' movie tells grandson's story

    The Hollywood movie, “American Sniper,” to be released on Christmas Day in some movie theaters, tells the story of Navy SEAL Chris Kyle, who served from 1999 to 2009. Joyce Kyle of Burns is the grandmother of the 38-year-old veteran, who died on a Texas shooting range in 2013 while trying to help a fellow veteran.

  • Presby bell to ring in Christmas

    As midnight nears Christmas Eve, someone attending the 11 p.m. service at Marion Presbyterian Church will move into position to pull the rope that will sound the steeple bell to ring in Christmas Day. Pastor Jeremiah Lange doesn’t know who that person will be.


  • Mummy hens laid to rest

    The Marion Elementary sixth graders wrapped their mummified chickens in shrouds and laid them to rest in sarcophagus-styled shoeboxes before entombing them in the band room closet. Thursday culminated the mummification of Cornish hens, which began at Halloween in Laura Baldwin’s class. Students had dried and rubbed cinnamon and nutmeg on their store-bought chickens before burying them in spice-rich graves inside zip-locked plastic bags.

  • Conyers provides holiday touch

    Mary Ann Conyers can finally put her talent on display. She has an eye, simply, for the way things go together. She spent her childhood making her room look nice, and her working career making her home look nice. She’s now able to share her talents with a public audience, and the windows of the St. Luke Auxiliary Thrift Shoppe are her medium.

  • Christmas is more than a day in Orthodox church

    A group of Hillsboro residents practicing centuries-old traditions of Orthodox Christianity does not need reminders that “Jesus is the reason for the season.” Observances of Christ’s birth started for them in mid-November, and will continue for many days after Dec. 25 Father Isaac Farha leads Holy Transfiguration Orthodox Christian Church, a congregation formed in 2001 that is part of the world’s second-largest Christian denomination, one which traces its roots back to the original apostles.

  • Christmas tree lasts year 'round

    Former Hillsboro Elementary School teacher Eileen Butler’s Christmas tree isn’t just a Christmas tree — it’s a celebration that changes with the holidays and seasons. “I don’t know why I do it, I just like sharing the spirit,” Butler said. “People at church tell me they like watching it change.”

  • Snelling makes angels from light globes

    When Dale and Tootsie Snelling were in Tampa, Florida, in October, she spotted an item at a craft show that she decided she could replicate. It was a glass angel made from an old ceiling fan globe. Snelling had some of those and created her own version. She ties colorful ribbons and bows around the neck of each globe, adds some greenery, and tops it with a clear, round ornament for the head. A tea light placed underneath adds sparkle to the skirt.

  • Solar energy topic at Marion Chamber

    Marion Chamber of Commerce members heard about the benefits of solar energy Friday at a holiday luncheon meeting. Brad Estes and Andrew Trapanese of BTI Energy described how solar energy can benefit companies and homes. They said solar power is advantageous because sunlight is everywhere and does not need a special location or resource. BTI Energy, headquartered in Greensburg, formed in response to the task of rebuilding the town after the 2007 tornado.

  • Runaway located, charges pending

    A teenage girl from Hillsboro was located in Peabody on Dec. 15 after running away with a 20-year-old man who was allegedly already on probation. Police Chief Dan Kinning said it wasn’t the first time the girl fled from home. This time she had help.


  • John Fox

    John Fox, 79, of Lehigh, died Thursday at Hillsboro. He was born June 26, 1935, to Francis and Mable (Reinke) Fox in Glen Elder.

  • Michael E. Wimberly

    Former Union Tank and Valmont worker Michael E. Wimberly, 60, of Burns died in his home Dec. 17. He was born Nov. 4, 1954, the son of Ralph “Mike” and Joyce “Ann” Wimberly of El Dorado where he grew and graduated from El Dorado High School.


    Sue Ann Brown, Clifford Entz



  • Centre school district

    Karen Nickel’s kindergarten class Dear Santa, I like your deer. I want toy horses and a toy unicorn. A janam is unicaorn. Have a safe trip. Love, Ryleigh Jones Dear Santa,

  • Goessel school district

    Ann Hiebert’s second grade class Dear Santa, I would like a big monster truck, maybe 5 of them. How many elves and reindeer do you have?

  • Hillsboro school district

    Tracy Boldt’s kindergarten class Dear Santa, I would like a John Deer tractor. Love, Adam Jost Dear Santa,

  • Marion Sunrise Country Preschool

    We have tried hard to be good this year and have done pretty well. Here are some gifts we would like you to bring to us: Aubrey Whiteman — Elsa dress and shoes.

  • Marion City Library

    For Christmas I would like one baby doll, a real stroller, a car seat for the doll with rain protector, stuffed gingerbread girl and boy, stuffed Santa Claus. Merry Christmas Santa. Love, Kate Wessel Dear Santa, You may not know my Christmas list, so here it is.

  • Marion school district

    Kindergarten Dear Santa, My name is Rusty and I will give you some cookies with chocolate milk, Santa frosting on the cookies. I hope I can go on a sled and I wish you can get me an X-Box, ipad, boots, cowboy shirts, and cowboy pants.

  • Peabody school district

    Michele Gossen’s preschool class Dear Santa, I want a toy turkey, toy horse, and a new, big bed like my brother has. Please bring Miles a new big bed, Jacob needs a bunch of new toys, I want Hunter to have a tiny bed, and Gracie needs another new bed. Love, Gabe, age 4 Dear Santa,



  • Wrestlers compete in county dual

    Marion Warriors took fourth place and Hillsboro Trojans came in 12th of 16 high school teams that wrestled in the Marion County Winter Duals tournament Friday in Marion and Hillsboro. Teams split up into pools and each wrestled three bouts to determine placement in the championship bracket.

  • Trojan boys throttle Broncos 74-48

    The margin of victory in Hillsboro’s 74-48 road triumph over Remington on Friday wasn’t as impressive as how the Trojans kept the pressure on when their floor leader headed to the bench. Micah Allen has led Hillsboro scorers in each game this season, and he was sizzling in the third quarter. He followed a layup with consecutive 3-pointers, hit a pull-up jumper on a fast break, nailed another long trey, then made a rare 4-point play when he converted a free throw after a 3-pointer to put the Trojans up 54-29.

  • Slow start derails Hillsboro girls

    Hillsboro fans had to wonder Friday if the basket the Hillsboro girls were shooting at was covered in plastic wrap at Remington. The Trojans missed 21 of 24 first-half field goal attempts as Remington streaked to a 23-8 halftime lead, and cruised to a 51-30 win.

  • Goessel girls remain undefeated

    The Goessel girls basketball team moved to 5-0 with a lopsided road victory for the Bluebirds, as the team sprinted to 45-23 win at Rural Vista. Goessel’s defense allowed Rural Vista only one point in the first quarter, but the Bluebirds only collected eight points of their own. Aleena Cook, Olivia Duerksen and Page Hiebert all added points to go up 12-1. Rural Vista picked up a few hard-earned points, and Goessel was ahead 22-12 at halftime.

  • Poor shooting plaques Goessel boys

    Poor shooting plagued the Goessel boys Friday in a seven-point loss to Rural Vista at Hope. The Bluebirds shot 26 percent from the field against the Heat, but somehow kept the game close. Goessel trailed 10-14 at the end of the first period with Zach Wiens getting eight points. Goessel was behind 14-23 at halftime.

  • Warrior boys lose at Haven

    The Marion boys basketball team couldn’t hang onto the ball Friday at Haven, and the Wildcats took full advantage to cruise to a 58-31 win. The Warriors coughed up the ball 23 times, with first quarter miscues contributing to a 14-7 deficit that grew to 26-13 by the half.

  • Haven hands Marion girls another loss

    The Marion girls basketball team gave away too many points early in Friday’s game at Haven and could never climb back for a lead, losing 39-27. It wasn’t so much a slow start by the Warriors as it was a torrid first quarter for the Wildcat’s Stacy Stallbaumer. She hit four 3-pointers, staking Haven to an 18-10 lead.

  • Centre girls get two victories

    The Centre Lady Cougars went into the holiday break with an easy victory Friday, taking down Wakefield 58-30. Shelby Makovec, Lotti Benning, Brenna Shields, Shelby Pankratz, Summer Espinoza, and Ally Basore combined for 18 points and a 7-point lead in the first quarter.

  • Centre Cougars get scrooged

    There were no victories in the Cougars’ stockings this past week. Facing formidable opponents, they went down hard, losing to Canton-Galva 72-22 and Wakefield 70-31. Playing under pressure, their shots didn’t fall readily, and they turned the ball over numerous times. Against Wakefield Friday at home, Dylan Deines scored Centre’s only points in the first quarter. They trailed, 25-2. They added 12 points in the second quarter but trailed 45-14 at halftime. Jared Barney and Deines combined for three treys, and C.J. Thompson made a bucket.


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