Friday, November 21, 2008

Walking in a Window Wonderland

In my former life I was a dancing snowflake. And a mechanical doll. And an Arabian dancer. And a waltzing flower.

Who knew that all those years of dancing roles in The Nutcracker would help me in my role as director of the Downtown Neighborhood Association?

This year’s theme for the DNA’s annual holiday event, Window Wonderland, is The Nutcracker Suite.

Visions of sugarplum fairies and other Nutcracker characters will be painted and displayed on downtown storefront windows beginning this week, just as the construction workers start to settle down for a long winter’s nap.

It’s the most wonderful time of the year to come to downtown Elgin. No flying dust, no deafening jackhammering, no traffic backups . . . just lots of holiday cheer and fun for the whole family.

Yeah, it’s cold, but I’ll take that over a mouthful of dust any day.

Window Wonderland was one of the first events that the DNA hosted when the organization was established back in 1998. The goal of the event was to bring people downtown to look at the decorated windows and get them into the businesses with enticing treats and specials. This year’s theme, The Nutcracker Suite, is a throw-back to the very first Window Wonderland in 1998.

Ten years later, the goal remains the same, though the event has grown tremendously in scope. More than 40 storefronts will be decorated by community groups, individuals and businesses competing for great prize packages. The public is invited to view the windows and vote for their favorites on December 6, while enjoying a flurry of other fun holiday activities, such as lunch and pictures with Santa, live reindeer, a live nativity, free ice skating, roaming carolers, chestnuts roasting on an open fire, the City’s tree lighting ceremony and much, much more.

So, mark your calendars to go walking through a “Window Wonderland” in Downtown Elgin on December 6. Visit for details.

NEW Downtown Elgin Gift Certificates

The Perfect Holiday Gift for friends, family and employees!

NEW! Downtown Elgin Gift Certiifcates are redeemable at more than 45 participating downtown merchants through the Downtown Neighborhood Association.

You can order these gift certificates in denominations of $5, $10 and $20 by calling the DNA at (847) 488-1456 or emailing Certificates will be available for pick-up the week of December 8.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

GPA Merchant's Night

Tuesday, November 18 6:00pm - 9:00pm

Join your GPA neighbors for a free evening of fun and friendship as we visit the businesses in Downtown Elgin. Local merchants have agreed to stay open late on Tuesday night so we can visit the shops, meet the owners, chat, learn what they have to offer, see what's new, socialize, and let them get to know us. It's a first step in building a relationship between the Gifford Park Association and the entrepreneurs who are choosing Elgin as the spot for their new endeavors.

Tuesday, November 18
Begin gathering at Ravenheart Coffee between 6:00 - 6:15pm
A bit of socializing at the coffee shop 6:15 - 6:40pm; depart Ravenheart at 6:40
Visit Lily Falls between 6:40 - 7:00pm
Visit Elgin Books from 7:00 - 7:20pm
End the evening at Elgin Public House 7:20 - ???

Use the Downtown Directory to find your way.