Train arriving back home sooner

Local residents who take the train to Chicago will now arrive home sooner.

New schedules took effect this month for Amtrak’s Hoosier State line between Chicago and Indianapolis.

Southbound trains 50 and 850 are now departing 11 minutes earlier at all stations from Dyer to Crawfordsville.

The trains leave Dyer at 6:44 p.m. local time, Rensselaer at 7:35 p.m., Lafayette at 9:46 p.m. and Crawfordsville at 10:20 p.m. Passengers pull in to Indianapolis at 11:39 p.m.

Likewise, northbound trains 51 and 851 now arrive in Chicago five minutes earlier, at 10 a.m.

Previously-booked customers have been notified of the changes.

The Hoosier State — which runs four days a week — is operated by Amtrak under contract with the Indiana Department of Transportation.

Amtrak resumed control of the passenger service in March.

The faster trips come as officials say more passengers are using the service.

Both ridership and revenue increased in March and April, according to an INDOT news release. Ridership was up double-digits in both months.

On-time performance is nearly 85 percent since October, and went above 90 percent in March.

ISP adds patrols for campaign

The Indiana State Police announced its participation in the national and statewide 2017 Click It or Ticket enforcement mobilization occurring now through June 4. Officers will join more than 250 state and local law enforcement agencies, and thousands more across the country, to conduct high-visibility patrols encouraging drivers and passengers to buckle up.

“Whether you are the driver or a passenger, wearing your seatbelt is the best way to ensure your safety in the event of a crash,” said Indiana State Police Superintendent Doug Carter. “ISP’s goal is to increase public participation through education and enforcement. Wear your seatbelt, restrain your child, or you will be pulled over.”

Click It or Ticket is an annual enforcement effort supported by federal funding allocated to ISP from the Traffic Safety division of the Indiana Criminal Justice Institute. Troopers will work overtime to conduct seat belt patrols around the clock. According to ICJI, in 2016, there were 827 people killed on Indiana roadways. Of those fatalities, 36 percent were found to be unrestrained.

“I am grateful for all the agencies involved in this campaign, which is vital to encouraging people to buckle up,” said Indiana Criminal Justice Institute Director Dave Murtaugh. “We will continue to spread the message of how crucial seat belt use is in saving lives and reducing injuries.”

Indiana law enforcement agencies have been actively involved in the Click It or Ticket campaign for over 20 years. In addition, for 2017, Indiana agencies will join those from across the Eastern half of the United States in a combined “Border to Border” mobilization. On Monday from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. this joint mobilization will be a driving force for seat belt safety, and unbelted, whether driving or riding, will result in a ticket.

For more information regarding the Click It or Ticket enforcement mobilization campaign, visit www.nhtsa.gov/nhtsa/ciot/index.html.

To learn more about the Indianan State Police, visit www.in.gov/isp.

CSX Repairs

Motorists traveling on East Market Street can expect to see road closed signs at the CSX railroad crossing until next week. The track maintenance work is expected to last one week.

CSX workers are doing maintenance to the railroad tracks at the E. Market Street crossing.

Event to help former commander

Crawfordsville American Legion Post #72 Past Commander Rodney Strong has a chance to make history and members of the local post want to help him.

Strong is a candidate for State Commander of the Indiana American Legion, and he would be the first Crawfordsville legionaire to ever attain such a high honor. If elected to the high post, he also will be the first person in Indiana to serve as state commander of both the Sons of the American Legion and the Indiana American Legion.

Running for the position of state commander is expensive, and that is where the local post is willing to help. On Saturday, the local legion will have a fundraiser to help finance Strong’s campaign. Starting at 4:30 p.m. the legion will serve a meal and have unique and fun paddle auction. Strong said as far as he knows, this type of auction is a first of its kind in the area. Some of the legion’s auxiliary unit members participated in a similar auction and they thought it would be a hit in Crawfordsville.

The auction, which includes many items, is about “selling” small paddles with a number on them. The more paddles one buys, the better chance a person has of winning the item. The first paddle needed to participate costs $5. Each additional paddle costs $1.

As each item is placed for auction, the cost will be anywhere from $.25 to $1 for each paddle that a potential bid winner displays. For instance, if they want an item, they could hold up all the paddles the own to improve their chances of winning the item. When all the paddles are held up for a particular item, a number will be drawn and the corresponding paddle will be the winner of the item.

“Some of our ladies got to play this game at a state meeting and they liked it so they wanted to bring it back here,” Strong said. “The gals said it is a lot of fun and to hear the reactions when someone’s paddle is not drawn is even funnier.”

Some of the auction items include a Chicago Cubs Championship throw, Hargrove prints, antique wall mirror, gift baskets for both men and women, travel bags, hair cut certificates, Harley Davidson and Indiana motorcycle shirts and hats. 

Local retailers have donated gift cards, quilt, original paintings, free night at a Holiday Inn Express plus much more.

“We have a ton of items to be auctioned off,” Strong said. “There will be something for everyone.”

A $5 meal will be served starting at 5 p.m. The menu includes roast beef and turkey sandwiches, macaroni and cheese, salads and desserts. Reservations can be made by calling 765-362-9921.

Reading program aims to build better world

LINDEN — Readers of all ages will explore all things “community” this summer as Linden Carnegie Public Library presents “Build a Better World” during their summer library reading program.

Activities will include recycling, art projects, community service, science, growing a greener community and more. The Summer Reading Program is open to young people ages 0-14 with programs, prize drawings, storytimes and a pizza party for the final day.

Participants must visit the library and sign up for the program to receive a registration packet and prize. Registration is limited this year. Be sure and like the library’s Facebook page: Linden Carnegie Public Library.

Activities for the summer are as follows:

• May 25 at 2:30 p.m. Recycling

• June 1 at 2:30 p.m. Grow a Greener Community

• June 8 at 2:30 p.m. Community Care

• June 15 t 2:30 p.m. Build Our Community

• June 22 at 2:30 p.m. My Home

• June 29 at 2:30 p.m. Community Block Party