WGLT's Sound Ideas | WGLT

WGLT's Sound Ideas

Weekdays 5-5:30 p.m.

WGLT's Sound Ideas is our flagship news program. Every weekday, WGLT reporters go beyond soundbites for deeper conversations with newsmakers, musicians, artists, and anyone with a story to share.

This 30-minute newsmagazine is produced Monday through Friday.

George Petrilli

A Democrat making a longshot bid against U.S. Rep. Darin LaHood says their district is gerrymandered in such a way that voters never get to truly hash out the issues with their candidates.

Charlie Schlenker

New data show the Bloomington-Normal economy continues to bounce back from the pandemic in spots.

Looters exit Target
Charlie Schlenker / WGLT

Defendants in more than 40 summer looting cases in Bloomington and Normal will not be allowed to present fully negotiated pleas to resolve their cases, a judge said Thursday, in a decision that leaves all sentencing options from probation to prison on the table.

hewett and anthony debate
McLean County Museum of History

You can see, and hear, dead people on the Evergreen Cemetery Walk. 

Abbi Sorrells
McLean County Democrats

The candidate challenging incumbent McLean County Coroner Kathy Yoder is urging voters to listen to ideas over partisan ties.

Normal Police HQ
Staff / WGLT

Four people have been issued $750 fines for allegedly violating the Town of Normal’s COVID-19 executive order prohibiting large gatherings near Illinois State University’s campus, officials said.

Senator Jason Barickman on the Senate floor.
Seth Perlman / AP

Illinois Senate Republicans have introduced a package of ethics reform legislation to make lawmaker corruption easier to investigate, but it's unclear how far the measurers will go in the Democratic-controlled chamber.

One idea would let the state's legislative inspector general begin investigations without approval from senators and House representatives.

Students standing in front of Ames Library
Illinois Wesleyan University

Illinois Wesleyan University athletics coaches and administrators want to remove the stigma that mental health issues often have in sports.

The three candidates
YouTube / WGLT

The election is fast approaching, and the McLean County Board District 5 race to represent part of the town of Normal has three candidates running amid the pandemic: Incumbent Republican John McIntyre, Democrat Rachael Lund, and Libertarian Jo Ann Litwiller.

Hillary Clinton
Gage Skidmore / Flickr

A McLean County Museum of History event series focused on “who has the power” will next turn its focus to women in politics, on the eve of another presidential election that will be won by a man.

Chipped paint on porch
Eric Stock / WGLT

The Cty of Bloomington is getting $2 million from the federal government to remove lead from 92 housing units.

WGLT Program Director Mike McCurdy will retire at the end of the month after nearly 40 years in broadcasting, 30 of them at WGLT.

George Ryan
M. Spencer Green / AP

As an Illinois legislator, George Ryan believed the state’s death penalty was an effective means of deterring crime and punishing those convicted of the most heinous wrongdoing.

Normal theater exterior
Ryan Denham / WGLT

After being closed for six months due to the pandemic, the Normal Theater will reopen for in-person film screenings starting Oct. 1.

seaside jumpers painting
Laura Kennedy / WGLT

Artist Cathy Engberg celebrates life’s simple, everyday moments.  

Barry Reilly seated at desk wearing a mask
Eric Stock / WGLT

District 87 parents have said the remote learning experience has generally been good, except for those with young children.

Exterior of Kingsley JHS
Emily Bollinger / WGLT

Unit 5 students will return to hybrid learning starting Oct. 19.

California state trooper
Don Thompson / AP

New research funded by State Farm shows there are still misconceptions about cannabis and driving safety -- and that 1 in 8 adults admits to having driven under the influence of marijuana.

Charlie Starr and Blackberry Smoke play the Corn Crib in Normal Saturday night
Blackberry Smoke

Musicians and concert promoters are working their way back into larger live music events. Blackberry Smoke headlines one of two shows this weekend at the Corn Crib in Normal.

A WGLT review of nearly 300 complaints against McLean County businesses, nonprofits and other organizations during the first five months of the pandemic show only a few repeat offenders, but public health officials dealt with a mix of frustration, anger and confusion over safety protocols that for many people either went too far or not far enough.

Eric Stock has the story.

The Creative Technologies Program / WGLT

The gaming industry is becoming so big that Illinois State University’s Creative Technologies major is leveling up when it comes to game design.

A candidate running in a mostly rural McLean County Board district says he hopes people will consider voting for him, even if they’ve not historically supported Democrats.

Normal’s gas tax rate will double to 8 cents per gallon beginning Dec. 1, after narrowly passing during Monday night’s town council meeting in a 4-3 vote.

Emily Bollinger / WGLT

Time after time, WGLT News gets tips when an organization has had an outbreak of COVID-19 and didn't tell its employees. Workers think that's wrong, but employers say it's not that simple.

There are different opinions about who's responsible to alert workers to risk and what information a company, school or other organization can share.

Grossinger Motors Arena box office
Eric Stock / WGLT

Running an entertainment venue is hard when you can't hold live events in-person. The City of Bloomington owns two: Grossinger Motors Arena and the Bloomington Center for the Performing Arts.

kids creating art
avilasal / Flickr via Creative Commons

Each autumn, Illinois State University offers kids in the community a chance to participate in a series of art classes, learning visual arts and drama. Naturally, those classes have a twist this year. 

Karen with her students
Facebook / Irving Elementary School

Remote learning presents unique challenges for students from low-income families, though the principal at one such school in west Bloomington says so far they’ve managed quite well.

The McLean County Board seat in District 4 representing central and northwest Normal is an opportunity for new representation. Longtime County Board member and retired Chief Circuit Judge William Caisley chose not to run again.

The new album from V8 Vast Change is titled "Civil Disobedience"
Dominique Stevenson

Dominique Stevenson has been a very public figure in Bloomington-Normal this year. He founded the youth-based Next Gen Initiative. The social-justice group initiated several marches and education forums in the Twin Cities this summer.

A McLean County Board incumbent says he's helped make county government more accessible, but his challengers say the county hasn't done enough.