Maureen Houston, News Democrat

Maureen Houston

News Democrat

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Past articles by Maureen:

Enter Hotel E’ville if you dare

Edwardsville, Illinois, couple fill most rooms of their house with Halloween decor, then invite friends, neighbors, co-workers and the curious to stop by. They will have an open house from 5-8:30 p.m. Oct. 30. → Read More

McFamily: Three generations are McDonald’s owners

Three generations of this metro-east family have been McDonald’s franchise owners. Steve Short owns nine; his daughter Jessica Lucas just acquired the New Baden franchise. Steve’s dad got into the fast-food business 37 years ago. → Read More

Triad teen’s back X-ray inspired her winning drawing

Triad teen who had surgery for scoliosis used her X-ray as basis for artwork that won Best of Show in Belleville’s Art on the Square’ high school category. → Read More

Freeburg grad’s short film shown at Cannes Festival

Brynn Elliot Watkins, a 2009 Freeburg High grad, and her husband Aaron Craig, had a short filmed they made at her parent’s Freeburg farm accepted into Cannes Film Festival’s Short Film Corner. → Read More

Father paralyzed in fall from tree hopes to attend benefit in his honor

After a fall from a tree left a Fairview Heights man paralyzed, the community is rallying to support the family. The Reyes Family Wings & Beer Benefit Dance on May 14 will help them with expenses. → Read More

Shiloh students finish ceramic creatures in time for May art show

Shiloh students prepare for May 6 art show where more than 1,000 pieces will be on display. If you attend, you, too, can make art ranging from origami, animal masks and airplane building. → Read More

East St. Louis family is on budget, thanks to St. Vincent de Paul

The St. Vincent de Paul Society in East St. Louis offers services to help those in need better themselves by teaching them how to handle their money, getting them health care and an opportunity to work. → Read More

Sugarfire opens next door to St. Louis’ National Blues Museum

Sugarfire Smoke House is open next door to St. Louis’ National Blues Museum in downtown St. Louis. → Read More

Columbia Girl Scout raising money, supplies for girls in Ecuador

Columbia High School senior earning Girl Scout Gold Award by collecting money and school supplies so girls in Ecuador can stay in school. Hannah’s goal: Collect 500 items, from markers to flash drives, and $2,000, the amount needed to send eight girls to high school for a year. She surpassed it by collecting more than a thousand items and more than $2,000. → Read More

Belleville reading coach watches kids’ light bulb come on

Barb Kinsella, a reading specialist at Notre Dame Academy in Belleville, shares tips on reading with kids. → Read More

Althoff graduate creates fountain sculpture at Bank of Belleville

David Newgent, 26, a 2008 Althoff Catholic High School graduate, used nine aluminum panels in the fountain piece that hangs at Bank of Belleville. Black airbrush detail enhances the fountain shape on the monochromatic ground aluminum panel. He based his design on the diamond-shaped fountain logo the bank uses on its letterhead. → Read More

Spicy chicken will challenge you at Southern in midtown St. Louis

Southern, a midtown St. Louis restaurant that serves comfort food, is known for its spicy chicken → Read More

Lebanon shop reflects owner’s passion for primitive home decor

Calico Moon, a Lebanon shop run by a mother and daughter, specializes in primitive-style home decor items along with quilting, embroidery and rug hooking supplies. → Read More

Metro-east high school artists show work at SWIC

New exhibition at Southwestern Illinois College features 170 pieces of art by metro-east high school students. → Read More

Belleville renovator gives older homes new life

Belleville renovator, remodeler, decorator and stager gives older homes new life. Her eclectic style combines old and new. → Read More

Metro-east trivia team prepares for its 1,000th trivia night

Jack Sauer has reached a milestone. → Read More

Student of the Week: Triad senior sings her way to top Illinois Music Education Association award

Laura Douglas started singing at church when she was 5 and hasn’t stopped. → Read More

Customers and students root for each other at O’Fallon beauty school

Georgia Bender gets a pedicure every couple months at New Image School of Cosmetology, Esthetics and Hair Technology. → Read More

Metro-east florists are part of St. Louis Art Museum’s Art in Bloom festival

Trisha Haislar’s interest in flowers has taken her from Collinsville to the White House, and many places in between. → Read More

Felix’s Pizza Pub is a hit in Dogtown

Steve Kolb (now VanderKolb) and Tom Galbraith met in kindergarten at Wolf Branch School in Swansea. → Read More