Belleville council plans bicentennial events: Gala, parade, 5K run

News-DemocratJuly 1, 2013 

— Test your knowledge of Belleville at a trivia night in September, one of many events the City Council approved Monday for the city's bicentennial in 2014.

Aldermen approved a schedule of events for the "Belleville 200" celebration and the use of city space for a memorabilia store.

The Belleville Bicentennial Committee planned the trivia night on Sept. 28 at Southwestern Illinois College.

Volunteers will staff a Belleville 200th Memorabilia Store at 227 E. Main St. starting Oktoberfest weekend in September to Dec. 31, 2014.

Major events include the following:

* Gala at Fischer's Restaurant on March 8, 2014.

*Bicentennial Parade and 5K Fun Run on April 25, 2014.

* Bicentennial Weekend Celebration from Sept. 19-21, 2014.

The committee is seeking volunteers. Anyone interested can attend the next meeting at 6 p.m. July 16 in the atrium of the Parks and Recreation Department, 512 W. Main St.

For more information, visit www.belleville200.com or call the Greater Belleville Area Chamber of Commerce at 1-800-677-9255.

In other business, the council:

*Approved nearly $2 million in construction bills to Korte & Luitjohan and Haier Plumbing for the $88 million long-term sewer plant overhaul project.

*Approved the hiring of probationary police officer David Ray to replace Nickolas Eddy, who resigned June 28. Ray will start July 15.

* Approved the low bid of $23,415 from International Mulch Co. for playground mulch for East End and Laderman parks as part of the Big Day of Serving event on July 11.

* Approved allowing the September 11th Memorial Walkway of Southern Illinois Committee to move the World Trade Center artifact to special events around St. Clair County as a way to raise money for the memorial.

Before the vote, Ward 3 Alderman Kent Randle asked if there was any potential liability to the city. Fire Chief Scott Lanxon said firefighters and police will accompany the artifact to events such as the Millstadt picnic at no cost to the city.

* Denied a use variance to Ricky Ruhman for a mobile office on the property of a car dealership at 8421 Old St. Louis Road. The council then approved more time for Ruhman to build a permanent office at the site. Ruhman has until March.

Also on Monday, the council discussed a public parking project, drainage issues at Bicentennial Park and mosquito fogging.

And, attendees applauded after Ward 5 Alderman Joe Hayden thanked city staff for their work on three recent issues in his ward: putting out a house fire, fixing potholes and investigating a 16-year-old runaway living alone.

The council went into executive session for less than 10 minutes to discuss contract negotiations, litigation and property acquisition.

Ward 2 Alderwoman Janet Schmidt and Ward 7 Alderman Trent Galetti were absent.

Contact reporter Jacqueline Lee at jlee@bnd.com or 239-2655. Follow her on Twitter at twitter.com/BNDBelleville.

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