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Thursday, Aug. 12, 2004 08:25 pm

quick takes 8-12-04

EXIT STRATEGIES

• Today is the last day to get a bite at the Bachmann & Keefner soda fountain -- if there's anything left to eat. The drugstore said it will stop serving food on Aug. 12 and transfer pharmacy operations to the CVS at 211 E. Carpenter St. on Tuesday. The Bachmann & Keefner location at 530 E. Capitol Ave. has been a drugstore for 92 years.

• Gibby's Orbits, which promised a "a taste of the fair" in downtown Springfield, closed its doors after a year of business on July 29. Pam Gibson, who co-owned the restaurant at 319 E. Monroe St., says she and husband Jack "Gibby" Gibson are again operating out of their mobile concession stand. The business simply didn't have enough of a lunchtime crowd, something she blames on state government cutbacks. But the Gibsons have no regrets. "It was a wonderful year -- we had a blast," she says.

• Sister Marilyn Jean Runkel, president of Sacred Heart-Griffin High School since 2000, has resigned to complete her doctoral studies, the Dominican Sisters of Springfield announced this week. Runkel, the high school's first president, is credited with launching a capital campaign that raised $4.4 million. She will complete her dissertation on organizational development at Benedictine University in Lisle. SHG expects to name a successor by August 2005.

GET ON THE BUS

A community meeting is scheduled for Saturday, Aug. 14, to discuss whether the Springfield Mass Transit District should begin offering evening bus service.

Last month, several dozen activists descended on the district's board meeting to testify that the current system of ending bus routes at 6 p.m. restricts the mobility of people with disabilities, and makes night-time employment impossible for many low-income workers.

Attendance will include Springfield area state legislators Raymond Poe and Rich Brauer, staffers representing U.S. Reps. Lane Evans and John Shimkus and U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin, as well as SMTD managing director Richard Fix.

Hosted by Central Illinois Organizing Project, the meeting will take place at 10 a.m. at First Presbyterian Church, 321 S. Seventh St.

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