Today’s MBIP post is kind of a double-whammy! I got invited not only to take a tour of The East Bluff Community Center, which used to be St. Bernard’s School but I’m also going to be interviewed for an upcoming radio show that’ll be aired on WAZU FM 90, which is broadcast and taped out of that building. So I guess we should get over there and let this double-whammy of a post get rolling!
Here we are on East Kansas Street in the East Bluff of Peoria. This building used to be St. Bernard’s School.
The building still has the name etched in cement over the doorway.
But it’s no longer St. Bernard’s it’s now the East Bluff Community Center and standing on the steps is Molly Crusen Bishop who’s going to give us a tour of the building and then she’s going to interview me for her upcoming radio show and podcast called, "Tales From The Whiskey City." We’ll have more about that later on in the post, so keep on scrolling for that information!
There’s a free little library outside and I love those! Check out the front door to see all of the organizations involved with the EBBC. There’s the Peoria Boys & Girls Club, the East Bluff Food Pantry, Illinois Central College, the YMCA, Turning Point and WAZU FM 90 radio station. Let’s go inside and take a look around in here.
This sign caught my eye as we got to the top of the stairs, it’s about Keith Cotton’s photography project called, Faces Of The East Bluff, which was shot here at the East Bluff Community Center. It’s portraits of people who live and work in the East Bluff and the photos are hanging here on the walls and in the hallways and we’ll be seeing more of them as this tour continues, so let’s continue this tour!
As you can see, there’s some of Keith’s photos here in the hallway, this is such great photography! It’s worth the trip here just to check it out.
Here we go down a hallway to the kitchen which used to be used for school lunches in here. It’ll be used for an upcoming Chili Supper fundraiser this Saturday on October 22nd to help not only the EBCC, but also WAZU radio as well. Click here for details on the Chili Supper fundraiser and make plans to attend if you can! The School’s gym is just beyond the kitchen and as you can see, it’s still in tip-top shape! The gym can be rented out and there’s also a stage area in here.
Molly’s showing us around more of the school down hallways and classrooms. There’s some art on the walls from kids who are utilizing the building and appreciate it, so they made this artwork as a symbol of thanks.
Here’s a hallway with more of the Faces Of The East Bluff portraits by Keith Cotton.
This is the area of the building that houses the office and studio for WAZU 90.7FM Peoria Community Radio. You can listen online by clicking right here. The popular local morning show, Roger and Friends is broadcast every weekday morning from 6AM to AM. In addition to that, there’s the most varied radio programming on this station that you’ll find on your radio dial or online. Molly has a show that she’s producing and hosting and it will be on-air soon and also available as a podcast. It’s an interview/talk show called, “Tales From The Whiskey City” and some of the people she’s interviewed for the show so far include, Judy Rosella Edwards, Ken Zurski, Judge Tim Cusack and Lonnie Edwards. And today I’m being interviewed!
This is Louis, who’s the Operations Manager for WAZU and as you can see he’s firing up the board for the interview today! It’s just about showtime!
Here we are in the studio for Molly’s Tales From The Whiskey City program. In addition to producing and hosting this show, Molly also writes for iBi magazine, The Peorian and is the rental manager for the Greenhut Memorial GAR Hall. She’s also a volunteer for the Central Illinois Landmarks Foundation and a member of the Peoria Historical Society. In addition to all of that, she’s also married and has five kids and one grandchild. Oh and she’s also written a children’s book! Yeah, I don’t know how she does all of that either! As she sat at her desk/console something appeared to be missing, wait, I know what it is...
Snacks! I brought some Kitchen Cooked potato chips and Molly brought some Goldfish and some drinks and we’re all set to go now! It’s...
Showtime! This was a fun interview and the time flew by! We touched on how I got into writing, some places in my own Peoria history, living in New York and what brought me back here to Peoria. And of course we also discussed MBIP! The interview and Molly’s show will be debuting soon on WAZU, stay tuned here and check out her facecrack page for updates and the announcement on when Tales From The Whiskey City starts broadcasting! I can’t wait!
Thanks to Molly for the tour of EBCC and for the fun interview, it was a blast! And thanks to Louis for taking this photo and the interview shots! We’ll see you all tomorrow!
East Bluff Community Center
512 E Kansas Street
We’re having an informal chili dog party tomorrow night at the Red Barn. Bartender Randy is making his legendary chili dogs and there’s plenty of beer and anything else you’d want to drink behind the bar! There’s no real reason for this party other than the fact that we’re having it! It starts at 6:00PM tomorrow (Thursday) night, so stop by, have a chili dog and hang out! Everyone’s invited and I hope to see you there if you can make it!