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March 2012 • • 1

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March 2012 • • 3


TABLE of contents on the cover


Styling with Stella


From the Publisher

6 Parenting 12 Gospel According to Scrooge

22 Pilot Flying J PUBLISHER/OWNER Jim Muir

26 All Aboard

CREATIVE DIRECTOR Stephanie Milligan


Impaired 30 Hearing Christmas

PHOTOGRAPHER Ceasar Maragni New Lions Den CONTRIBUTING WRITERS Harry Boyd Lila H. Colloton Don Gasaway Ceasar Maragni Jim Muir Jon Musgrave Bernie Paul Dixie Terry George Trammell Cindy Gunnin For more information regarding Marion Living call Jim at 618-525-4744.

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reetings and welcome to the March issue of Marion Living Magazine.

Christmas in March? Well, you might think so as you read through this month’s magazine but in truth we’re just trying to get all our Christmas stories caught up. Marion must be the Christmas capitol of the world … it’s taken us three months to get all our stories in ML. You see, we had umpteen requests to cover specific Yuletide events and being unable to say ‘no’ we ended up with a boatload of stories – far too many for one issue. So, we have spent the past three months catching up on the many wonderful events held in and around Marion during the 2011 Christmas season. While some might look at it as ‘old’ news we would rather think of it as a chance to relive the warmth of Christmas during the unseasonably warm spring we are having. Hmmm … maybe that’s an idea … Christmas year-around? So, as you enjoy this month’s Marion Living and view the great stories and pictures about the ‘Santa Train’ and ‘The Gospel According to Scrooge’ it will give us yet one more opportunity to be totally politically incorrect and wish you and your family (yet again) a very Merry Christmas.! As we roll into 2012 we are excited on a lot of fronts here at Marion Living, but two very important ones. First, we have increased our circulation by 2,500 magazines per month which will hopefully get our monthly work in the hands of more people and more advertisers. That hefty increase also gives us the opportunity to open up many new distribution points which of course goes handin-hand with the previous sentence about getting the magazine to more people on a monthly basis. So, if you know of any business, doctor or dentist office or any other venue that might be interested in adding Marion Living on a monthly distribution please let us know. Also, be sure and check out our Marion Living Facebook page and my own personal Facebook page where we will have regularly updated links to stories and to our website ( As always, thanks for reading and God Bless You! Jim Muir, Publisher

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Gary Direnfeld Advice on Parenting Don’t Focus On Your Child’s Happiness! Many parents strive to have happy kids. In their efforts, they are loath to see their children upset and seem to do anything to allay the child’s consternation. So, what child wants, child gets. Child doesn’t want, child doesn’t have to do. There is a belief by these parents that their children will be naturally appreciative and hence will behave inordinately well. However, when their children do not behave as hoped or expected, the parents will admonish the child, advising of how well the child has it and hence should act more reasonably. Typically the child shrugs off the lecture and the parent feels more beholding to the child for upset caused by reasonable expectation and the parent winds up seeking to undo the child’s distress by giving in to the greater demands of the child. A vicious cycle ensues and eventually the child acts with a tremendous sense of entitlement, is out of control and increasingly is doing less and less in terms of reasonable expectations such as helping around the house or taking care of school work. The child does what he or she wants and literally nothing else. The parent feels impotent – helpless to do anything about the situation. In truth, in the pursuit of their child’s happiness, parents forget to hold their child accountable to reasonable expectations. Rather than being concerned by the child’s objections to reasonable expectations, the parents need to concentrate on helping the child learn to tolerate frustration and learn to delay gratification and most importantly, learn to be responsible.

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Parents must understand that they cannot purchase their child’s happiness and nor can or should they spare them from feelings of frustration. A child’s frustration is the life lesson that they cannot get everything they want as they want it. Some things they may never have and other things they may have to plan for. Learning these lessons, the child learns that life does not revolve around just themselves, but around others as well. Thus they learn to cooperate and get along with others in the pursuit of needs and wants. Further, the child learns that he or she cannot escape responsibilities and that the managing of responsibilities is tied to life’s rewards. If you really want your child to grow up happy, the best thing a parent can do is concentrate on supporting their child to act responsibly. As your child is responsible in behavior and responsible in taking care of chores, school work and activities, then the child develops skills and learns how to cope in the world. Further, this child stays out of trouble, cooperates with others and completes tasks in a timely fashion. This child gets to reap the rewards of their responsible behavior. They learn to cope with frustration and plan for things or events of interest. They also learn to cope with not obtaining everything they may want or desire. If your child learns this kind of responsibility, then your child can be truly happy. This is the kind of happiness that comes from cooperation with others, intact relationships and earning life rewards by one’s reasonable actions. So, don’t focus on your child’s happiness. Focus on helping your child become responsible and happiness will be the outcome.

March 2012 • • 7

Around Williamson County Carterville’s New Lions Den Lions (finally) get to play in new state-of-the-art gymnasium During my career as a photojournalist in Southern Illinois I’ve taken photos in most every high school gym from Centrailia on the north, to Cairo on the south, to Mt. Carmel on the east and Chester on the west. River to river, I’ve pretty much seen them all. Some have been well lit, spacious palaces and others dingy, dark dungeons. In their own special way they were and are all unique and no two have been alike. Some no longer exist, replaced by newer, often larger facilities. The other evening I paid a visit to our region’s newest gymnasium and it’s a dandy. For decades high school basketball games at Carterville were played in a dimly-lighted, quaint, cozy gym, but

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when the new high school opened on the town’s west side this year, a new state of the art gym was included in the package. The bright, colorful facility seats 2,500 and offers Lions fans a great venue to cheer for their kids. The new gym utilizes the school colors, orange and navy blue, in well coordinated combinations, offering first time visitors what I call the “Wow” factor. Many Lions fans tend to agree. Steve Samuel and his wife Karen are long time season tickets holders who love the new gym. He’s a 1980 graduate of the high school himself and says, “This place is beautiful! When I walked in the other night for the first game it took my breath away. I’d have given anything to have played in a gym like this.” Larry and Jean Shacklee sit a few rows in front of the Samuels and they too think it’s a pretty special place to watch games. “My first impressions were that it is very pretty, very bright and then I listened to the way the basketball bounced on the floor, and it really, really sounded good.” Jean added, “It’s beautiful and the seats are so comfortable compared to the old gym.” As you might expect, Carterville boys head coach Scott Burzynski is pleased with the new gym too, saying “It’s a tremendous facility for our community. It’s an honor and very humbling to play and coach here.” The new gymnasium is included in the new 225,000 square foot high school building which also includes a smaller multi-purpose gym which seats 500 and a new auditorium which seats 750. It’s all part of a $25 million package which also includes their fabulous football stadium, two stories of classrooms and laboratories, a performing arts wing, which includes the auditorium, brand new band and chorus rooms and a sparkling new cafeteria.

Story & Photos by Ceasar Maragni March 2012 • • 9

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Is available at these locations:

If you would like to be a distributor for Marion Living call 618-525-4744.

Golds Gym Bank of Marion Ideal Lawn & Tractor Marion Civic Center Hampton Inn Marion City Hall Quiznos Carnegie Library Subway Wm. Co. Senior Citizens CVS Marion Chamber of Commerce Marion Post Office Hospice of Southern Illinois Triple E BBQ 17th Street Bar & Grill EZ Auto Black Diamond H-D Days Inn Williamson County Tourism Econo Lodge Etcetera Valvoline Dougâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Lock and Key Walgreens Bennies Super 8 Adams Shoe Store Marion Office Center McDonalds (2 locations) Borowiakâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Medicine Shop Banterra Penn zoil Pit Road Racing NAPA Papa Murphyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Bank of Herrin Motel 6 Comfort Suites Alltel Quality Inn Marion Health Care Holiday Inn Heartland Regional Medical Americaâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Best Inn Fifth Third Bank Drury Inn Applebees Country Inn Regions Fairfield Inn Gray Plaza Mid Country Bank Best One Tire US Bank Garden Gate Florists March 2012 â&#x20AC;˘ â&#x20AC;˘ 11

The Gospel According to

Scrooge For the eighth consecutive year the music and drama ministries of Marion’s First Baptist Church presented area residents with a Christmas musical at Marion Cultural and Civic Center. This year’s production was “The Gospel According to Scrooge” – a retelling of the Charles Dickens’ “A Christmas Carol” – with a Christian twist. According to Director Tom Herman, who also played Scrooge, this year’s production was planned for and rehearsed for months prior to the December performances. “We started with the choir back in August and then began casting, followed by lots of rehearsals after that. It takes a lot of people and a lot of hard work to stage these each 12 • marion living magazine • March 2012

Story & Photos by Ceasar Maragni

year,” Herman said. This year’s production featured more than 60 on stage actors, singers dancers and in addition there were dozens of others working backstage, in the pit orchestra and filling various other roles required to put on a lavish production of this scale. In addition to Herman’s stage direction, Brian Summers was the music director. “One reason we do this every year is to help people March 2012 • • 13

understand the true meaning of Christmas,” Summers said. The duo have been active in the regional theater scene for decades and all that experience pays off in productions that rival those in larger cities such as New York or Chicago. “One thing we’re proud of is that each year our Christmas production is really a church wide ministry,” Summers said. “Children, youth and senior adults are all involved. Most of them invite their family and friends to see the show, so it’s a real outreach to the community at large.” The free two and a half hour production was presented six times to large crowds.

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Page 12 top: The entire cast takes a curtain call. Bottom: Amy Wilson makes final adjustments on her costume before taking the stage as Caroline Cratchit. Page 13 bottom: Toni Jo Holan, left, and Hope Bonds, right, joined the other school children for this song and dance number. Page 14 top: Dennis Mohr as the Man Solicitor appeared to Scrooge in a dream sequence. Bottom: Nicole Mings appeared as the Spirit of Christmas Past. Page 15: Scrooge, actor Tom Herman, hard at work in his office.

March 2012 â&#x20AC;˘ â&#x20AC;˘ 15

16 â&#x20AC;˘ marion living magazine â&#x20AC;˘ March 2012

Styling with Stella

Marion business still going strong 30 years later

Stella Karl is living proof that worrying is usually a waste of time.

Karl opened her unique women’s clothing shop in Marion nearly three decades ago and admits that she nearly made herself sick worrying about whether the store would survive. “I lost every hair on my head!” she said. But her worry was for naught as the store became successful quickly and Story & Photos by Ceasar Maragni

March 2012 • • 17

“Well, mainly we have to keep in mind that we take things that are less than two years old. We also now only take major label brands, no more Wal-Mart or Target brand. We have found that most of our clientele are girls who are working and need to supplement their wardrobe. They find they can buy a Liz Claiborne blouse here for $8 that originally sold for maybe $70 at a major retailer” – Stella Karl, store owner – has been a fixture in Marion since July 4th 1982, the day she opened her doors for business. “I went into debt to buy the building,” she recalls. “I was the first consignment shop in Marion. There was “The Nearly New

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Page17: Stella Karl in her Marion shop. Page 18 top: Jewelry galore can always be found at Stella’s. bottom: Stella’s on West Main Street in Marion is a must stop spot for thousands of area women shoppers. Page 19 top: Watches await new owners at the shop. Bottom: During prom season owner Stella Karl, left, and store employee Carolyn Ellis admired a pretty pink bejeweled dress. Page 20: Winona Pope is one of seven part time employees at Stella’s. She’s worked there five years.

Shop” in Carbondale, now called Jane’s. But in their earlier days they closed during the summer when all the college students would go home. I’ve seen other shops come and go. At one time we had six consignment shops here in town. They usually last six months to a year.” One key to her success may be her keen aware of style. “Well, mainly we have to keep in mind that we take things that are less than two years old,” Karl said. “We also now only take major label

March 2012 • • 19

brands, no more Wal-Mart or Target brand. We have found that most of our clientele are girls who are working and need to supplement their wardrobe. They find they can buy a Liz Claiborne blouse here for $8 that originally sold for maybe $70 at a major retailer” “We get a good amount of items from my old customers, and I have to break in my new customers,” she said. “The items have to be pressed. They have to be clean, have to be on hangers, with no visible spots, stains or spills.” “We also look for in-season and in-style,” Karl said. “If I take it in for sale we always look an item over carefully before putting it on the floor and again when it’s sold. Consigners get 50 percent of what the item sells for.” Ever optimistic about the business, Stella laughs and says there is no end in sight for her and the popular business that she worried so much about 30 years ago. “I’m 74 years old now and I’m going to go as hard as I can until I die,” she laughed.

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Emergency medicine is about three things: compassion, skilled care and speed. You’ll find these at Heartland Regional Medical Center. The experienced E.R. physicians and the entire team are committed to working diligently to have you initially seen by a clinical professional* within 30 minutes of your arrival. If you need an E.R. fast, try our fast E.R. Once you do, you won’t want to go anywhere else. For more information, visit

*Clinical professional is defined as a physician, physician assistant or nurse practitioner. If you are experiencing a medical emergency, call 911.

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March 2012 • • 21

Pilot Flying J

For years truckers, travelers and lots of New travel center in Marion features full locals helped make amenities for professional drivers and other Marionâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s BP The Refuge a must stop travelers not only for fuel, but for the tasty food served at the Refuge Restaurant. That all changed recently when Pilot Flying J Travel Centers Inc. gutted the former Refuge building and surrounding property to build a new, state-of-the-art travel center. The new Pilot Travel Center opened for business in late December and has seen a steady stream of customers flow in and out 24 hours a day, seven days a week. According to Pilot Flying J spokesman Lauren Christ, the 8,542 square-foot travel center features full amenities

22 â&#x20AC;˘ marion living magazine â&#x20AC;˘ March 2012

“We believe our familiar Pilot sign will be a welcome sight for interstate travelers and professional drivers.” -- Ellen Dorchincez, general manager of the new Marion Pilot Flying J –

for professional drivers and the motoring public. Nestled alongside Interstate 57, the new Pilot facility is part of a network of more than 550 travel centers and travel plazas in the Pilot Flying J family, which serves 1.3 million customers every day across the U.S. and Canada. The new Marion location includes a Subway restaurant, clean restrooms, pay phones, an AirVac, fax and copy services, Western Union and money orders, an ATM, lottery and Lotto tickets, an arcade, laundry services and general merchandise for professional drivers and highway travelers.

March 2012 • • 23

Ellen Dorchincez, who serves as general manager of the Marion location, said the new facility has something for virtually every mode of travel.

Page 22: Marion’s new Pilot Travel Center opened for business in late December. Page 23 Top: When’s the last time you saw windshield washer at a gas station this clean? Bottom: Pilot centers are known for their wide selection of hot and cold drinks for the thirsty travler. Page 24: The new travel center features a new Subway sandwich shop.

“We believe our familiar Pilot sign will be a welcome sight for interstate travelers and professional drivers,” Dorchincez said. “They’ll want to pull off to fill up, refresh and sample some of our featured food items like pizza, Oscar Mayer hot dogs and as well as our speciality coffees, which was named ‘Best Coffee on the Interstate’ by readers of Trucker News.”

Headquartered in Knoxville, Tennessee, Pilot Flying J employees over 18,000 people and is the largest operator of travel centers and travel plazas in North America. 24 • marion living magazine • March 2012

Story & Photos by Ceasar Maragni

March 2012 • • 25

All Aboard


Santa Train For several weekends in December Marion residents were treated to the sound of train whistles and the sight of happy children waving from passenger train car windows when the Santa Train made its way from the downtown Crab Orchard & Egyptian Railroad Depot westward with Santa and his elves on board. Christopher native Justin Sobeck is one of those in charge of operating Marion’s Santa Train and this was the second year of operation. While 5,000 people rode the train this year, Sobeck said that was still short of the 6,000 who were on board last year. Last year they utilized four passenger cars and this year they brought in two more for a total of six. While the economy and weather may have been factors in the lower turnout this year, Sobeck says he still hopes they can offer the experience again next December. Some like Larry DeMatti of West Frankfort hope so. He said, “This is such a wonderful experience for children and adults alike.” 26 • marion living magazine • March 2012

Story & Photos by Ceasar Maragni

On each of the hour and a half round trips for the Santa Train, all passengers were greeted by Santa himself as well as a couple of his elves who helped the jolly old fellow pass out candy canes. If the smiles of young passengers Michael and Patrick West were any indication, it was an hour and a half well spent.

March 2012 â&#x20AC;˘ â&#x20AC;˘ 27

Page 26: Santa poses for a photo with, from left to right, Phobe Bunton, Brianna Bowlin, A.J. West, Michael West and Mark Patrick West. Page 27 top: These two charming elfs helped pass out candy canes on the Santa Train. They are Brianna Shafer on the left, and McKayla McGee. Bottom: Each car on the Santa Train featured with colorful Christmas decorations. Page 28 top left: Children, parents, grandparents and others all seemed excited as they boarded the Santa Train in Marion. Top right: Conductor Justin Sobeck punches tickets in one of the passenger cars. Bottom Left: Passenger Larry DeMatti snaps a photo of grandchildren. Bottom Right: This little guy was fascinated with the southern Illinois scenery as the Santa Train made it’s way along the tracks.

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March 2012 • • 29

Every December since Marion’s School For Hearing Impaired opened first opened over thirty years ago the students have presented their annual Christmas Musical. This year was no exception and for the standing room audience in attendance the hard work of the students and their teacher helpers was worth all the hard work. According to teacher Deanna Behm over sixty students participated in this year’s Christmas program. Their enthusiasm was obvious as Behm explained, “They’re pumped up! They’ve talked about it for weeks.” Marion’s School for Hearing Impaired serves grades PK-8 and operates under the auspices of the Williamson County Special Education District. Story & Photos by Ceasar Maragni

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Page 30 top: These two little guys seemed to be singing with all their hearts. Bottom: Students and teachers worked hard at both rehearsals and setting the stage as well. Page 31 top: Cookies at Christmas was what these three sang about. Bottom: The musical’s finale featured all the participants.

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March 2012  

Volume Nine Issue 3

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