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.

Bloomington police car
Amy Niebur / WGLT

Months after a Bloomington police officer was involved in a racially-charged dispute, the City of Bloomington has released officer body camera footage of the incident.

Joe Deacon / WCBU

Gov. JB Pritkzer has signed a criminal justice reform bill spearheaded by the Illinois Legislative Black Caucus. But questions linger among activists, lawmakers and law enforcement officials over the effects of the bill.

John Milhiser
U.S. Attorney for the Central District of Illinois

When John Milhiser took over as U.S. attorney for the Central District of Illinois in 2018, he had several priorities for the office, including plans to build working relationships with 365 law enforcement agencies dotted across the sprawling 46-county federal district.

Milhiser leaves office on Feb. 28, a departure he knew was possible when he moved into his Springfield office. Milhiser and other prosecutors who were appointed during the Trump administration, or confirmed by the Senate, were asked to resign recently as part of the Biden transition.

U.S. Rep. Darin LaHood said the Biden administration should negotiate with COVID-19 vaccine makers to boost production.

Kristen Weikle
Staff / WGLT

Flat funding for Illinois schools is effectively a cut. That's Unit 5 Superintendent Kristen Weikle's thought on Gov. JB Pritzker's budget proposal.

Adam Kinzinger speaking at House committee hearing
Kevin Deitsch / Pool via AP

Illinois Republican Rep. Adam Kinzinger’s support for impeachment of former President Donald Trump helped make Kinzinger a national political figure. He's also taking heat from many within his own party and even his own family.

Performing arts students continue to overcome pandemic hurdles in a big, complicated way.

Facebook / Immigration Project

The Immigration Project is taking a new holistic approach to services.

Traditionally, the project has offered legal services, but now has expanded offerings with a new Welcoming Center on Landmark Drive in Normal. Hannah Mesouani manages the center with two caseworkers.

Photos Courtesy Facebook / Kelby for Ward 7, Mollie Ward For Bloomington City Council Ward 7, June Peterson-Middlebrooks, Coretta Jackson for Ward 7, Daniel Freburg

Five candidates are vying for the Ward 7 seat on the Bloomington City Council. But only two will appear on the ballot in the April 6 municipal election. This week, voters will determine who those finalists will be.

Pamala Eaton

It’s brutally cold outside. There’s a foot of snow adding to the misery. Oh, and the pandemic. Charming. 

But one local artist steadfastly has embraced an inner warmth with his new collection of works, letting his romantic side out to shine a light in the persistent darkness. 

Donovan Muldrow prepares meals
Emily Bollinger / WGLT

A startup meal prep service and delivery company is creating new partnerships with food producers and now a major grocery chain in Bloomington-Normal.

The new EP from V8 Vast Change is "Life"
Levi Briggs photography

Dominique Stevenson is a very visible Twin City activist who uses his music to spread a message of unity and encouragement. He was on the front lines of social justice marches last summer and even founded the youth-based advocacy group Next Gen Initiative.

Robin and Jeanice clean
OSF HealthCare / Courtesy

For Robin Dennewitz, the best part of her cleaning job at OSF Healthcare St. Joseph Medical Center is talking to the patients. And they’ve never needed her more.

Governor Pritzker
Staff / WGLT

City and county leaders in McLean County said Wednesday one of Gov. JB Pritzker's budget proposals is a bad idea.

The governor has proposed taking 10% of the income tax money it currently shares with cities, towns, and counties through the Local Government Distributive Fund.

Apartment after fire
Jessica Wenberg

Many college students who called the Sugar Creek Apartments home are adjusting to their new reality after Saturday’s fire, even as others are reaching out to help their displaced neighbors.

Normal Fire Department / Facebook

It was a long weekend for the Normal Fire Department.

Twitter / The First Dogs of the United States

The White House has two new four-legged occupants: Champ and Major Biden. The German shepherds are good for more than just a feel good story or photo op. They’ll offer special benefits to workers on the Hill.

Project Oz sign
Project Oz

More young adults in Bloomington-Normal need shelter now than during the early part of the pandemic.

Project Oz Youth Service Director Cheris Larson said at the start of the pandemic, many vulnerable youth had jobs, but friends stopped letting them couch surf because they feared the virus. Larson said there are now longer term homeless young people.

Fire crews battling apartment fire
Charlie Schlenker / WGLT

The Normal Fire Department said Tuesday the blaze that heavily damaged or destroyed 12 units at the Sugar Creek Apartments on Saturday was caused by repair work being done inside a lower-level apartment.

Linda Foster speaking at outdood gathering
Emily Bollinger / WGLT

COVID vaccines are still in limited supply, but health officials fear many people still won't get a shot when it's available.

Judy Markowitz
WGLT file photo

Former Bloomington Mayor Judy Markowitz, a groundbreaking leader whose passion for downtown helped bring a controversial arena and performing arts center to the city's core, has died.

In his first weeks in office, President Joe Biden has rolled back multiple federal policies that negatively affected LGBTQ+ people under former president Donald Trump. But in Illinois, policy advocates say there’s still more battles to be fought.


Xenophobia and racial hatred against Asian Americans has grown stronger due to the pandemic and the Trump administration's language surrounding it, according to an Illinois State University researcher.

ISU anthropology professor Nobuko Adachi says her research proves it. She’ll discuss her work during a virtual Research Series talk later this month. 


While the past year has been a tough one for nearly everybody, a 14-year-old local high school student's story of perseverance has earned her a place on the TEDxNormal 2021 virtual stage.

Brett Conlin's new EP it titled "The Great Divide"
Nic Gundy Photography

Bloomington singer/songwriter Brett Conlin said a three-month isolation at home with his family last spring became the fodder for his just released acoustic EP "The Great Divide."

Datebook: A New Role For A B-N Theater Veteran

Feb 11, 2021
Rhys Lovell
Laura Kennedy / WGLT

A venerable member of the Bloomington-Normal theater community is branching out with a new role that, on its surface, seems like something brand new. But at its heart, it’s a job with core values he knows very well. 

Elon Musk
Mark Lennihan / AP

The electric automaker Rivian already has raised billions of dollars from the likes of Amazon and Ford. Why would it want to go public?

Dan Brady
Dan Brady / Courtesy

Republican lawmakers have been speaking out against new standards for teacher education being proposed by the Illinois State Board of Education.

Women looking into nursing home through window
Edith Brady-Lunny / WGLT

Nursing home operators are grateful long-awaited COVID-19 vaccines have started to make it to their facilities.


The Crossroads Project at Illinois State University, which is devoted to promoting diversity and inclusion, will do a staged reading of “The DePriest Incident” next month.