Friday, December 09, 2011

Residents to gain more access to healthy, active lifestyle options through local grant programming

Three Elgin organizations – Downtown Neighborhood Association, the City of Elgin and Highland Fellowship Church – were among 11 selected to receive grant funding from the Making Kane County Fit for Kids Consortium.

The grants, ranging in amount from $1,200 to $10,000, will be used to reverse the rising tide of childhood obesity in Kane County through a variety of programs designed to promote active lifestyles and increase access to fresh fruits and vegetables.

The city of Elgin was selected to receive two grants – one for $10,000 for the Elgin Community Garden Network to expand the number of community garden sites through the city and one for $1,500 for the Bicycle and Pedestrian Advisory Committee to support the Second Annual Bike for Life event.

Highland Fellowship Church will receive a $4,000 grant to expand a community garden on their church site where local at-risk families can learn how to grow food for themselves and for local food pantries.

DNA will receive a $3,500 grant to purchase equipment to accept debit, credit and LINK cards at the Downtown Elgin Harvest Market. The initiative will allow lower income residents greater opportunity to purchase healthy, locally grown and produced foods, and also provides an economic boost to the local growers and vendors of the area by increasing their customer base.

“We will now be able to open up the market to an underserved population, giving them more access to locally produced foods and to their community,” said Tonya Hudson, DNA executive director. “When they shop at the market, they will also see cooking demonstrations by local chefs, exhibits by local artists, performances by local musicians and more. We hope the experience will encourage more engagement in the downtown and in the community.”

Grant recipients were chosen by the Consortium based on their proposals to implement strategies that are contained in the Fit Kids 2020 Plan. This is the second time this year that the Consortium has distributed the grants.

The Fit Kids 2020 Plan was developed by parents, physicians, engineers, educators, planners, public health professionals, transportation experts, faith leaders, local policy makers and more. The Funders Consortium’s members are: the Community Foundation of the Fox River Valley, the United Way of Elgin, the Forest Preserve District of Kane County, the Kane County Regional Office of Education and the Kane County Departments of Health, Development and Transportation.

Wednesday, December 07, 2011

Window Wonderland Decorating Contest Results

The Downtown Neighborhood Association of Elgin thanks everyone who braved the elements and rocked in the holiday season in downtown Elgin at Saturday's Rockin' in a Window Wonderland – Presented by Provena Saint Joseph Hospital.

After tabulating the judges' ballots and collecting all of the People's Choice Award votes from both paper ballots and online, we are pleased to announce the winners of this year's Window Wonderland Window Decorating Contest:

Gifford Park Association, decorated FutureLink IT, 164 E. Chicago Street, was selected as the Best Overall Window as determined by our judging panel. For their efforts they will receive a $500 Cash Prize and will be recognized at an upcoming Elgin City Council meeting.

Other winners include:

Business – Kirkpatrick, Jones & Herzog, 19 S. Spring Street;

Children's – Highland Christian Academy, decorated 62 S. Grove Avenue;

Open – YWCA Elgin, 220 E. Chicago Street;

People's Choice – Highland Christian Academy, decorated 62 S. Grove Avenue

Each of these organizations will receive $50 in Downtown Elgin Gift Certificates and will also be recognized at an upcoming City Council meeting.

To see a slideshow of all participating decorated windows, click here!

For more information about downtown Elgin events or to find out how you or your organization can become a DNA Member in 2012, call (847) 488-1456, e-mail downtownelgin@gmail.com or visit DowntownElgin.com

Tuesday, December 06, 2011

DNA & Elgin Symphony Team Up for Discounted Holiday Concert Tickets


The Downtown Neighborhood Association of Elgin and the Elgin Symphony Orchestra are teaming up once again to offer DNA members and fans a chance to enjoy one of downtown Elgin's most treasured cultural institutions during the holiday season at a discounted price.

This coming weekend the ESO gets to the heart of the holidays with "'Tis the Season," a traditional concert filled with talented guest artists & beloved carols.

When ordering your tickets by phone, mention the DNA's "Top 10" eblast to receive a 10% discount on your ticket order for any performance of "'Tis the Season". You can also use the coupon code "11-DNA" when ordering tickets online at ElginSymphony.org

Specific performance dates and times for "'Tis the Season" are:

Saturday, December 10 - 3:30PM and 8PM
Sunday, December 11 - 3:30PM

All performances are held at the Hemmens Cultural Center, 45 Symphony Way in downtown Elgin.

Featured soloists are Rich Ridenour, much-loved pianist and previous guest artist with the ESO, and Elizabeth Norman, the Chicago-based soprano who has wowed ESO audiences. Special appearances by Choral-Aires Chorus & Elgin Children's Chorus.

To purchase tickets, please call the box office at 847-888-4000 or order online at ElginSymphony.org.

After the show, the DNA invites you to enjoy one of downtown Elgin's many fine eateries for dinner or drinks. For more information about downtown restaurants and bars, visit DowntownElgin.com.

Monday, December 05, 2011

Workshop to Discuss “Windows of Opportunity” in Downtown Elgin

The public is invited to participate in the Downtown Neighborhood Association of Elgin’s Downtown Brainstorm workshop on December 14, 6 to 8 p.m. at the Gail Borden Public Library in downtown Elgin.

The workshop’s focus is on downtown Elgin’s “Windows of Opportunity” – specifically what businesses residents, visitors and existing business owners would like to see in downtown in the next few years.

Workshop attendees will work in groups to identify target customer groups, existing downtown business clusters, complementary business opportunities and available spaces in which to locate them.

Space is limited. RSVP to DNA at (847) 488-1456 or downtownelgin@gmail.com or @downtownelgin on Facebook and Twitter.

This is the third in the series of Downtown Brainstorm workshops. Held in November, 2010 and March, 2011, the workshops are designed to be interactive so attendees can meet new people, provide input and learn more about downtown Elgin. Each workshop has produced valuable information that DNA has used in planning its programming, projects and special events.

DNA’s Downtown Brainstorm was recently recognized by the Illinois Main Street Program with a 2011 Lieutenant Governor’s Award for Excellence in Downtown Revitalization.

Friday, December 02, 2011

Window Wonderland Decorating Contest Participants

The following is a list of participating windows in the 2011 Window Wonderland window decorating contest. Pick up your printed ballots at the DNA Office on Saturday, December 3 beginning at Noon. Paper ballots must be submitted by 5PM on December 3.

You can also VOTE ONLINE for the People's Choice Award at www.DowntownElgin.com. Online voting concludes on Monday, December 5 at 5PM.

To vote, you will need to enter the code number (example: B-100) either on your printed ballot or in your online ballot for the entry you feel is the "best of the best" and most effectively represents the theme of this year's event, "Rockin' in a Window Wonderland".

View photos of most of the participating windows in the Window Wonderland Photo Album.

2011 WINDOW WONDERLAND DECORATING CONTEST PARTICIPANTS

B-100
The Annex Antiques
201 E. Chicago Street
Business

B-101
Demi and Cooper Advertising
18 Villa Court
Business

O-200
Downtown Elgin Harvest Market decorating
59 Douglas Avenue
Open

B-102
Elgin Antiques and Uniques
203 E. Chicago Street
Business

O-201
Elgin Citizens Police Academy decorating
Elgin Police Department
151 Douglas Avenue
Open

O-202
Elgin Junior Service Board decorating
Al's Café
43 DuPage Court
Open

O-203
Elgin Lodge No. 117 decorating
56 S. Grove Avenue
Open

C-300
Elgin River Rats HS Rugby
Steffen, Kelly and Steffen
17 Douglas Avenue
Business

B-103
Elgin Symphony Orchestra
20 DuPage Court
Business

B-104
Extreme Wireless
119 S. Grove Avenue
Business

O-204
Gifford Park Association decorating
Future Link IT
164 E. Chicago Street
Open

C-301
Highland Christian Academy decorating
62 S. Grove Avenue
Children's

O-205
Holy Trinity Lutheran Church decorating
165 E. Chicago Street
Open

O-206
Judson University decorating
Ken Stepps State Farm
111 Douglas Avenue
Open

B-105
Kirkpatrick, Jones and Herzog
19 S. Spring Street
Business

O-207
Our Lady of the Holy Rosary
205 Fulton Street
Open

O-208
Puerto Rican Heritage Organization decorating
Montana Realty
8 Douglas Avenue
Open

B-106
Ravenheart Coffee
176 E. Chicago Street
Business

B-107
The Razor’s Edge
55 Douglas Avenue
Business

B-108
Rediscover Records
207 E. Chicago Street
Business

B-109
Salon Couture
176 E. Chicago Street
Business

B-110
Shockey Jewelers
18 Douglas Avenue
Business

B-111
Simple Balance Holistic Center
221 E. Chicago Street
Business

C-302
Spring Hill Gymnastics decorating
61 S. Grove Avenue
Children's

O-209
SWAN decorating
SpaceTaste Gallery
10 Douglas Avenue
Open

B-112
Two Doors Down Antiques
207 E. Chicago Street
Business

B-113
WRMN's Radio Shopping Show
22 Douglas Avenue
Business

B-114
Wrona Brothers
205 E. Chicago Street
Business

O-210
YWCA Elgin
220 E. Chicago Street
Open



Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Window Wonderland Ready to Rock Downtown Elgin

It's almost here! Downtown Elgin Window Wonderland - Presented by Provena Saint Joseph Hospital, returns to the streets of downtown Elgin this Saturday, December 3 from 12-5PM.

In addition to all of the beautifully decorated storefront windows, decorated in this year's event theme of "Rockin' in a Window Wonderland", lining Elgin's downtown, Window Wonderland offers the following list of activities and locations (subject to change), including:

Real Live Reindeer - Santa's Crew Reindeer fly into Elgin's Civic Parking Lot (Highland and Douglas Avenues) from 12-4PM.

Holiday Horse Drawn Carriage - Presented by Hampton, Lenzini and Renwick. Enjoy a festive, horse-drawn carriage ride up and down Douglas Avenue. The carriage will also drop off and pick up visitors at the Elgin Winter Market, 166 Symphony Way. Round trip rides are $5 per person (kids 5 and under FREE) and can be purchased at the Civic Parking Lot (Highland and Douglas) or at the Winter Market. The Horse Drawn Carriage will operate from 12-4PM.

Live Nativity Scene with Nativity Animal Petting Zoo - First United Methodist Church, 215 E. Highland Avenue, will again be performing the live nativity in front of the church from 12-4PM. Kids can also enjoy petting and feeding all of the nativity animals. Nativity performances take place every half hour. In between performances, FUMC invites you inside to partake in their Holiday Open House with refreshments and tours of the church.

Kris Kringle Mart - Browse dozens of holiday crafts and unique gift ideas at our special Window Wonderland Kris Kringle Mart at 215 E. Chicago Street from 12-5PM. The Kris Kringle Mart will open Friday, December 2 and remain open until Sunday, December 4.

Ice Sculpting Demo - Artist Joe Gagnepain will demonstrate his ice sculpting skills from 12-2:30PM by showing guests how to transform a block of ice into an intricate holiday work of art in DuPage Court near the Elgin Symphony Orchestra offices.

Rockin' Santa - He's part Santa, part Elvis but he's all about rockin' your Window Wonderland! Join Rockin' Santa as he performs all your holiday favorites (and maybe a few you haven't heard before) at Villa Verone, 13 Douglas Avenue, from 12:30-2PM, and then at Ravenheart Coffee, 176 E. Chicago Street from 2:30-3:30PM! (Times subject to change)

Holiday Passport - Beginning at Noon, kids and families can pick up a free goody bag at the DNA Office, 2 Douglas Avenue, containing menus and coupons from downtown businesses as well as an exclusive Window Wonderland Adventure Kit containing: a map detailing the day's activities and passport stops, a People's Choice Award window decorating ballot and a secret message decoder. To decode the message and redeem your free Photo with Santa and gift at Elgin Public House, visit all of the passport stops and write down the codes on the posters at each stop to reveal your super secret message from Santa before turning it into our Elves at Elgin Public House.

Photos with Santa - Presented by Elgin Public House. After visiting all of the passport stops, turn in  your decoded message to Santa's helpers at EPH, 219 E. Chicago Street, and get your photos taken with the big guy himself from 2-4PM. You will receive a printed photo in a keepsake holiday card (while supplies last) and a secret Santa gift!

Window Decorating Contest/People's Choice Balloting - Be sure to check out all of the beautiful decorated windows and vote for your favorite in the People's Choice Window Decorating Award Voting. Ballots will be available to pick up at the DNA Office, 2 Douglas Avenue, beginning at Friday, December 2. You can also VOTE FOR YOUR FAVORITE WINDOW ONLINE throughout the weekend. Online voting concludes on Monday, December 5 at 5PM.

The day culminates with the City of Elgin's Tree Lighting Ceremony at 5PM in front of City Hall at 150 Dexter Court. The Elgin Children's Chorus will perform followed by Council Members and City Staff helping to throw the switch to officially usher in the holiday season in Elgin.

Beginning Friday, December 2 you can pick up your Window Wonderland Adventure Kit at the DNA Office at 2 Douglas Avenue or at other downtown locations, or download at DowntownElgin.com.

Winners of the Window Decorating Contest will be announced the week after Window Wonderland. Three winners will be selected by our judging panel in the categories of Open, Business and Childrens. Each category winner receives a $50 Downtown Elgin Gift Certificate. The People's Choice Award winner will also receive a $50 Downtown Elgin Gift Certificate. One overall winner selected by our judging panel will win a $500 Cash Prize.

CLICK TO SEE A COMPLETE LIST OF PARTICIPATING DECORATED WINDOWS

Thank you to our valued sponsors Provena Saint Joseph Hospital, Hampton, Lenzini and Renwick, Elgin Public House, Judson University and Elgin Junior Service Board.

For more information about Downtown Elgin Window Wonderland, contact DNA Promotions Coordinator Jason Pawlowski at (847) 488-1456 or e-mail jpawlowski@elginil.org.

Friday, November 25, 2011

List of Participating Windows in Window Wonderland Decorating Contest (to date)

This Saturday, December 3, downtown Elgin will be rockin' in the holiday season as the DNA's Window Wonderland - Presented by Provena Saint Joseph Hospital returns to the streets of downtown Elgin from Noon-5PM.

In addition to all of the wonderful activities and attractions available around downtown, the highlight of the day will be the opportunity to visit all of our beautifully decorated storefront windows and even judge for yourselves which ones are your favorites in our People's Choice Award voting.

The following is a list of the addresses of confirmed windows to date that will be decorated in the theme of this year's event, "Rockin' in a Window Wonderland", as well as the participating decorating group and the category in which they will be competing:

Demi and Cooper Advertising
18 Villa Court
Business

Downtown Elgin Harvest Market decorating
59 Douglas Avenue
Open

Elgin Antiques and Uniques
203 E. Chicago Street
Business

Elgin Citizens Police Academy decorating
Elgin Police Department
151 Douglas Avenue
Open

Elgin Junior Service Board decorating
Al's Café
43 DuPage Court
Open

Elgin Lodge No. 117 decorating
56 S. Grove Avenue
Open

Elgin River Rats High School Rugby decorating
Steffen Kelly and Steffen
17 Douglas Avenue
Open

Elgin Symphony Orchestra
20 DuPage Court
Business

Extreme Wireless
119 S. Grove Avenue
Business

Gifford Park Association decorating
Future Link IT
164 E. Chicago Street
Open

Highland Fellowship Church decorating
62 S. Grove Avenue
Childrens

Holy Trinity Lutheran Church decorating
165 E. Chicago Street
Open

Judson University decorating
Ken Stepps State Farm
111 Douglas Avenue
Open

Kirkpatrick, Jones and Herzog
19 S. Spring Street
Business

Our Lady of the Holy Rosary
205 Fulton Street
Open

Puerto Rican Heritage Organization decorating
Montana Realty
8 Douglas Avenue
Open

Ravenheart Coffee
176 E. Chicago Street
Business

Rediscover Records
207 E. Chicago Street
Business

Salon Couture
176 E. Chicago Street
Business

Shockey Jewelers
18 Douglas Avenue
Business

Simple Balance Holistic Center
221 E. Chicago Street
Business

Spring Hill Gymnastics decorating
61 S. Grove Avenue
Childrens

SWAN decorating
SpaceTaste Gallery
10 Douglas Avenue
Open

The Annex Antiques
201 E. Chicago Street
Business

The Centre of Elgin
100 Symphony Way
Open

Two Doors Down Antiques
207 E. Chicago Street
Business

WRMN's The Radio Shopping Show
22 Douglas Avenue
Business

Wrona Brothers
205 E. Chicago Street
Business

YWCA Elgin
220 E. Chicago Street
Open

All windows will be marked with appropriate signage to indicate they are a participating window as well as a unique corresponding category code. Ballots for the People's Choice Award will be included inside the Window Wonderland adventure packet. You must submit your People's Choice Award ballot to the DNA office at 2 Douglas Avenue by 5PM on Monday, December 5. You can also vote online at DowntownElgin.com starting December 2.

Our judging panel will score each window based on a variety of criteria. Winners in each category will win $50 in Downtown Elgin Gift Certificates. The group or business whose window is selected as the Best Overall Window will win $500 CASH!

Thank you to our Presenting Sponsor: Provena Saint Joseph Hospital.

Thanks also to our Event Sponsors: Hampton, Lenzini and Renwick; Kirkpatrick, Jones and Herzog Insurance; Tom's Auto Clinic; Judson University; Elgin Public House and Elgin Junior Service Board.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Give the Gift of Downtown Gift Certificate Promotion

The Downtown Neighborhood Association of Elgin encourages everyone to shop local this holiday season by patronizing our downtown businesses for your holiday shopping needs. Downtown Elgin Gift Certificates are a great way to not only support our small businesses but to Give the Gift of Downtown to friends and loved ones!

Now thru December 30 during the DNA's Give the Gift of Downtown Promotion:

- Buy at least $50 in Downtown Gift Certificates and receive one $5 Downtown Gift Certificate FREE!
- Buy at least $100 in Downtown Gift Certificates and receive one $10 Downtown Gift Certificate FREE!
* Limit one special promotional rate offer per person, per household during the length of the promotion.

Downtown Elgin Gift Certificates are available in denominations of $5 and $10 and are accepted at over 60 of the following downtown businesses:

RESTAURANTS AND BARS

Al's Cafe and Creamery
43 DuPage Court

Bangkok House and Shanghai Restaurant
11 Douglas Avenue

Camaroncito Loco
21 N. State Street

Casa Lara Restaurant
7 Clock Tower Plaza

Domani Cafe
109 E. Highland Avenue

Douglas Street Sports Pub
231 Douglas Avenue

Eaton's Redwood Inn
118 W. Chicago Street

El Faro #1
9 N. State Street

Elgin Public House
219 E. Chicago Street

The Gasthaus
15 N. Grove Avenue

La Rosita Bakery
9 N. State Street

La Quebrada Restaurant
50 N. Spring Street

Martini Room
161 E. Chicago Street

Medusa's
209 E. Chicago Street

Pastigel Bakery
154 E. Chicago Street

Ravenheart Coffee
176 E. Chicago Street

Spanky's Gyros III
51 Clock Tower Plaza

Toom Toom Thai Restaurant
23 S. Grove Avenue

Villa Verone
13 Douglas Avenue

RETAIL AND SERVICES

Andersen's
27 N. Grove Avenue

The Annex Antiques
201 E. Chicago Street

Artistic Framing and Supplies
25 N. Grove Avenue

Budget Signs
20 S. Spring Street

Butera Market (this location only)
3 Clock Tower Plaza

Central Barber Shop
172 E. Chicago Street

Collingbourne's Interesting Things
219 W. Highland Avenue

Crawford's Automotive
151 N. Spring Street

Crucial Cuts
15 Ziegler Court

Divine Touch Salon
15 N. State Street

Elgin Antiques and Uniques
203 E. Chicago Street

Elgin Books and Coffee
209 E. Chicago Street

Elgin Jewelers
11 N. State Street

Extreme Wireless
117 S. Grove Avenue

Fadez and Bladez
9 N. Grove Avenue

Fusion Mind-Body Studio
221 E. Chicago Street

Integrity Beauty Salon
217 E. Chicago Street

JJ Peppers Food Store
10 S. State Street

JR Photographics
164 Division Street

Kellenberger Auto
217 Symphony Way

Kerygma Piano
164 Division Street

Kim's Black Belt Academy
5 S. Spring Street

Nick's Liquors
71-77 Clock Tower Plaza

Pittsburgh Paints
266 Kimball Street

The Razor's Edge
55 Douglas Avenue

Rediscover Records
207 E. Chicago Street

Salon Couture
176 E. Chicago Street

Shockey Jewelers
18 Douglas Avenue

Simple Balance Holistic Center
221 E. Chicago Street

SpaceTaste Gallery
10 Douglas Avenue

Studio One Hair Design
151 E. Highland Avenue

Super Print
160 E. Chicago Street

Tom's Auto Clinic
264 Prairie Street

Sophie's Jewelry
125 S. Grove Avenue

Tongue N Chic Dental Boutique
14 Douglas Avenue

Top Notch Tatoo
216 E. Chicago Street

Two Doors Down Antiques
207 E. Chicago Street

Wrona Brothers
205 E. Chicago Street

Ziegler's Ace Hardware
215 N. Spring Street

ENTERTAINMENT

Elgin OPERA
350 Park Street

Elgin Symphony Orchestra
20 DuPage Court

Elgin Theatre Company
350 Park Street

Janus Theatre Company
164 Division Street, 8th Floor

Monday, November 21, 2011

DNA Honors Businesses, Volunteers in Roaring '20s Style

The Downtown Neighborhood Association of Elgin celebrated downtown Elgin in the Roaring ‘20s last Thursday by transforming the Grand Victoria Casino’s Fox River Room into a 1920’s-style speakeasy called “The Blind Tiger” for the organization’s annual Awards Gala.

The DNA handed out seven awards to individuals, organizations and businesses that had a positive impact on downtown Elgin over the past 12 months.

Extraordinary Volunteers: Armida and Joe Dominguez;

Outstanding Member Business: Elgin Public House;

Outstanding Partner Business: In the Neighborhood Deli;

Remarkable Renovation: Senior Services Associates;

Excellence in Business: Villa Verone;

Above and Beyond Award: Krisilee Murphy;

President’s Award: ACME Design

Click here to view a slideshow of the evening > > >

DNA Board President Karin Jones and Board Member Armida Dominguez also celebrated the lives of former DNA Board Members, Patricia Keeney and Steve Munson, both of whom passed away during the last year.

To lend to the evening’s golden ambience, cast members from Janus Theatre portrayed fictional ‘20s characters that interacted with guests and performed Vaudevillian musical numbers during dinner hour.

A judging panel also selected both the best dressed “guy” and “doll” whose attire was most reflective of the ‘20s theme. The winners were Alex Pecharich and Nikki Adams Hutcherson, who each received $25 in downtown Elgin gift certificates.

The DNA Awards Gala was presented by TranSystems, Landmark Contractors, Grand Victoria Casino and the City of Elgin. Sponsors included Sherman Health, Shales McNutt Construction, Janus Theatre, Future Link IT, Forthwrite Message Boards, Hitchcock Design Group, Nick’s Liquors and VTS Investigations.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Rockin' in a Window Wonderland

It's beginning to look a lot like Downtown Elgin Window Wonderland - Presented by Provena Saint Joseph Hospital, taking place Saturday, December 3 from 12-5PM in the streets of Downtown Elgin.

Scheduled activities and locations (subject to change) include:

Real Live Reindeer - Santa's Crew Reindeer fly into Elgin's Civic Parking Lot (Highland and Douglas Avenues) from 12-4PM

Holiday Horse Drawn Carriage - Presented by Hampton, Lenzini and Renwick. Enjoy a festive, horse-drawn carriage ride up and down Douglas Avenue. The carriage will also drop off and pick up visitors at the Elgin Winter Market, 166 Symphony Way. Round trip rides are $5 per person (kids 5 and under FREE) and can be purchased at the Civic Parking Lot (Highland and Douglas) or at the Winter Market. The Horse Drawn Carriage will operate from 12-3PM

Live Nativity Scene with Nativity Animal Petting Zoo - First United Methodist Church, 215 E. Highland Avenue, will again be performing the live nativity in front of the church from 12-4PM. Kids can also enjoy petting and feeding all of the nativity animals. Nativity performances take place every half hour. In between performances, FUMC invites you inside to partake in their Holiday Open House with refreshments and tours of the church.

Kris Kringle Mart - Browse dozens of holiday crafts and unique gift ideas at our special Window Wonderland Kris Kringle Mart at 215 E. Chicago Street from 12-5PM. The Kris Kringle Mart will open Friday, December 2 and remain open until Sunday, December 4.

Ice Sculpting Demo - Artist Joe Gagnepain will demonstrate his ice sculpting skills by showing guests how to transform a block of ice into an intricate holiday work of art in DuPage Court.

Rockin' Santa - He's part Santa and part Elvis but he's all about rockin' your Window Wonderland! Join Rockin' Santa as he performs all your holiday favorites (and maybe a few you haven't heard before) at Villa Verone, 13 Douglas Avenue, from 12:30-2PM, and Ravenheart Coffee, 176 E. Chicago Street from 2:30-3:30PM! (Times subject to change)

Holiday Passport - Beginning at Noon, kids and families can pick up a free goody bag at the DNA Office, 2 Douglas Avenue, containing menus and coupons from downtown businesses as well as an exclusive Window Wonderland Adventure Kit containing: a map detailing the day's activities and passport stops, a People's Choice Award window decorating ballot and a secret message decoder. To decode the message and redeem your free Photo with Santa and gift at Elgin Public House, visit all of the passport stops and write down the codes on the posters at each stop to reveal your super secret message from Santa before turning it into our Elves at Elgin Public House.

Photos with Santa - Presented by Elgin Public House. After visiting all of the passport stops, turn in  your decoded message to Santa's helpers at EPH, 219 E. Chicago Street, and get your photos taken with the big guy himself from 2-4PM. You will receive a printed photo in a keepsake holiday card (while supplies last) and a secret Santa gift!

Window Decorating Contest/People's Choice Balloting - Be sure to check out all of the beautiful decorated windows and vote for your favorite in the People's Choice Window Decorating Award Voting. Ballots will be available to pick up at the DNA Office, 2 Douglas Avenue, beginning at Friday, December 2. You can also VOTE FOR YOUR FAVORITE WINDOW ONLINE throughout the weekend (the link will be active beginning Friday, December 2 at Noon).

The day culminates with the City of Elgin's Tree Lighting Ceremony at 5PM in front of City Hall at 150 Dexter Court. The Elgin Children's Chorus will perform followed by Council Members and City Staff helping to throw the switch to officially usher in the holiday season in Elgin.

Beginning Friday, December 2 you can pick up your Window Wonderland Adventure Kit at the DNA Office at 2 Douglas Avenue or at other downtown locations, or download at DowntownElgin.com.

Winners of the Window Decorating Contest will be announced the week after Window Wonderland. Three winners will be selected by our judging panel in the categories of Open, Business and Childrens. Each category winner receives a $50 Downtown Elgin Gift Certificate. The People's Choice Award winner will also receive a $50 Downtown Elgin Gift Certificate. One overall winner selected by our judging panel will win a $500 Cash Prize.

CLICK TO SEE A COMPLETE LIST OF PARTICIPATING DECORATED WINDOWS AND VOTE FOR YOUR FAVORITE ONLINE!

Thank you to our valued sponsors Provena Saint Joseph Hospital, Hampton, Lenzini and Renwick, and Elgin Public House.

For more information about Downtown Elgin Window Wonderland, contact DNA Promotions Coordinator Jason Pawlowski at (847) 488-1456 or e-mail jpawlowski@elginil.org.

Wednesday, November 02, 2011

Decorate a Window and You Could Stuff Your Stocking with $500 Cash!

Attention local artists, schools, neighborhood associations, non-profits, businesses and community groups! DNA is offering a $500 Cash Prize for our 2011 downtown window decorating contest as part of this year's "Rockin' in a Window Wonderland" holiday event on Saturday, December 3, 12-5PM in downtown Elgin.

Windows should be decorated to the "Rockin' in a Window Wonderland" theme, incorporating holiday music and performance themes in the window's visuals, props and messages. Bonus points are given for entries that bring the theme to life during the event on December 3. Judging categories include Business, Children's, Open and a People's Choice Award. Winners in each category receive a $50 Downtown Elgin Gift Certificate, and one overall winner will be chosen by a panel of judges to receive the overall $500 cash prize.

Window decorating takes place throughout the month of November. Judging takes place on Saturday, December 3 and windows stay up until January 2. Groups can request a specific downtown storefront window or our committee can assign you one.

If your group is interested in participating in the 2011 Window Wonderland Window Decorating Contest, please download the participation form, complete and submit to:

DNA
Attn: Window Wonderland Committee
2 Douglas Avenue
Elgin, IL 60120

Completed participation forms and any applicable fees are due by no later than Friday, November 11.

Download Window Wonderland Participation Form > > >

If you have any questions, please contact the Downtown Neighborhood Association of Elgin at (847) 488-1456.

Elgin Commerce Building Debuts New Business Center

On Thursday, November 3 from 4-6PM, the Elgin Commerce Building, 40 DuPage Ct, invites you to attend an Open House for their beautiful, brand new Business Center. Light refreshments will be served.

The Business Center offers over 2,200 sq. ft., 9 unique offices for lease, conference room, kitchenette and common work area. These are great opportunities for start-up businesses looking for office space.

For more info about the Elgin Commerce Building's new Business Center and Open House, contact Chris Kravetz at ck@ckrealtor.com.

Monday, October 31, 2011

Toom Toom Thai Celebrates 2-Year Anniversary with Thailand Flood Fundraiser


On Wednesday, November 2, Toom Toom Thai Restaurant, 23 S. Grove Avenue, will be celebrating their two-year anniversary in downtown Elgin.

To mark the occasion, Chef Uthaiwan (Toom) Wiitanen is hosting a day-long fundraiser with the proceeds benefiting The Princess Foundation, which provides relief and support to the victims of the recent floods in Thailand.

From 11:30AM until 9PM, in lieu of the restaurant’s traditional lunch and dinner menu, guests will be treated to a special menu of Vegetable Egg Rolls, Chicken Pot Stickers, and Beef, Chicken or Vegetable Noodle Soup. All food is free with a donation.

At 12PM, representatives from the Downtown Neighborhood Association of Elgin along with the Elgin Area Chamber of Commerce and the Elgin Area Convention and Visitors Bureau will conduct a brief ceremony congratulating Wiitanen on her two years of business in downtown Elgin. The ceremony will conclude with Mayor David Kaptain reading a proclamation recognizing November 2, 2011 as Toom Toom Thai Restaurant Day in Elgin.

In addition to collecting donations, there will also be silent auctions for unique prizes as well.

For more information about the, please contact Chef Toom Wiitanen at (847) 531-8755.

Friday, October 28, 2011

DNA Honored at Illinois Main Street Awards Dinner


GALESBURG, IL - On Wednesday, October 26, the Downtown Neighborhood Association of Elgin was honored with two Illinois Main Street awards for downtown revitalization from at the organization’s 2011 Awards Dinner at Soangetaha Country Club in Galesburg, Illinois.

Executive Director Tonya Hudson and members of the DNA Board of Directors and Staff accepted the Lt. Governor’s Award for Downtown Revitalization in the Outstanding Organization Project category for the DNA’s Downtown Brainstorm: an interactive planning workshop about downtown Elgin addressing a different topic of relevance to the community.

Promotions Coordinator Jason Pawlowski accepted the Lt. Governor’s Award for Downtown Revitalization in the Outstanding Promotion category for Downtown Madness – a social media promotion that pitted the signature drinks and dishes of downtown bars and eateries in a March Madness style bracket tournament where the public’s votes determined the winners of each match-up.

The Awards Dinner capped off three days of workshops, seminars and networking opportunities at the 2011 Illinois Main Street Conference in Galesburg, in which over 40 different Illinois Main Street communities from across the state participated.

As part of the conference, Hudson and Pawlowski also presented an educational workshop about social media strategy for Main Street organizations entitled “Social Media on Main Street”.

Monday, October 24, 2011

Halloween Day-Night Double Header in Downtown Elgin


Downtown Elgin is THE place to be this Halloween Weekend!

On Saturday, October 29 from 10AM-4PM, the DNA once again presents Elgin's Halloween Howl - Presented by Alexian Brothers Health System & Ken Stepps State Farm - a family-friendly afternoon of frightfully fun festivities in downtown Elgin.

Schedule of Events:

10AM-1PM - Sherman Health's Halloween Family Fun Fair at The Centre of Elgin, 100 Symphony Way, featuring family-friendly activities and a kids costume contest

Noon-4PM - Trick or Treating at downtown Elgin businesses

1-3PM - Elgin Public Museum's Bone Hunt - a fun Halloween archeological dig on the grass in front of The Hemmens, 45 Symphony Way

1-3PM - Midwest Dance Collective Teaching the Thriller Dance - under the direction of Ellen Werksman MDC will be teaching kids the Michael Jackson Thriller Dance on the Nightmare on Chicago Street stage at Chicago & Douglas

1-4PM - Kids Costume Photo Booth at Ken Stepps' State Farm, 111 Douglas Avenue - get your kids photos taken in their Halloween finest

1-4PM - Psychosis Haunted House, 200 N. Spring Street, matinee, "kid-friendly" haunted house

2-3PM - Halloween Crafts & Music Activities in the basement of The Hemmens, presented by U-46

3:30PM - Elgin Symphony Orchestra's Spooktacular Concert at The Hemmens. Come in costume to hear some "boo"-tiful music. Tickets are $15 for adults, $10 for kids and available in person at the box office on the day of the concert or purchase tickets in advance at http://www.ElginSymphony.org

For a complete list of participating businesses in the Howl's Trick-or-Treating and a comprehensive schedule of Halloween weekend events in downtown Elgin, click here!

THEN...

NEWSFLASH! The Zombies have taken over and Elgin is the last line of defense! Join the Zombie Defense Initiative on from 6-11PM as the City of Elgin presents Nightmare on Chicago Street.

Chicago Street (between Douglas and Villa) will be closed for a Halloween music festival, with local bands, theater performances, a zombie walk, live burlesque show, a visit from Svengoolie and Victoria Price, granddaughter of legendary horror actor Vincent Price, a costume contest and specials from downtown businesses.

Admission is $7 at the gate with $5 discounted advanced tickets available at the DNA Office, 2 Douglas Avenue. Children under the age of 17 must be accompanied by an adult (age 21+).

6-7:30PM - Kashmir (Led Zeppelin tribute band)

8-9PM, 9:30-10:30PM - ARRA (classic rock tribute band)

9-9:30PM - Costume Contest with Svengoolie

9:30-11PM - Meet and Greet with Svengoolie

10:40-11PM - Burlesque Show by Dancewerks Dance Productions

For more information on the City of Elgin's Nightmare on Chicago Street event, visit http://www.NightmareonChicagoStreet.com

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Dr. Torres to Speak at October Out to Lunch


The Downtown Neighborhood Association's final Out to Lunch of the 2011 season is Monday, October 24 at Elgin Public House, 219 E. Chicago Street in downtown Elgin. October's special guest speaker is Dr. Jose Torres, Superintendent, School District U-46.

Guests will enjoy networking between 11:45AM-12PM. The lunch portion of the program begins at Noon followed by Dr. Torres' presentation about his Destination 2015 plan around 12:30PM.

For $12 per person (all inclusive with tax & tip included - cash only) guests will be treated to a delicious lunch buffet of some EPH favorites as well as a choice of soft drinks or water.

RSVP with your name and e-mail address to the DNA by phone at 847-488-1456, by e-mail jpawlowski@elginil.org, or via our Online RSVP Form by no later than Friday, October 21.

The Out to Lunch Meetings, typically conducted on the fourth Monday of each month, are an effort to showcase a different downtown Elgin restaurant while engaging the public with guest speakers and topics relevant to the downtown community.

This year's Out to Lunch guest speakers have included City of Elgin Mayor David Kaptain, City Manager Sean Stegall, Police Chief Jeff Swoboda, Provena St. Joseph Hospital CEO Dr. Eugene McMahon, YWCA Elgin Special Events Coordinator Deirdre White, and Downtown Elgin Harvest Market Manager Jennifer Benson.

Thursday, October 06, 2011

DNA Awards Gala Roaring '20s Trivia on WRMN-AM 1410


Think you know your 1920's Elgin trivia?

Beginning Monday, October 10 listen to WRMN-AM 1410 every Monday, Wednesday and Friday at 7:20AM throughout October and early November for your DNA Awards Gala Roaring '20s Trivia Question of the Day.

After the question is read, be the first person to e-mail the correct answer to us at DowntownElgin@gmail.com for your chance to win Downtown Elgin Gift Certificates and other prizes from trivia question sponsors. Winners will be announced at 5:20PM each day on WRMN and on DNA's Facebook and Twitter pages.

Click to listen to the WRMN radio commercial >>>

On Thursday, November 17, the Downtown Neighborhood Association invites you to join us at the Grand Victoria Casino, 250 S. Grove Avenue, as we celebrate 1920's Elgin along with those who are working to make downtown a swell place to live, work and enjoy today!

Cocktails at 6PM (cash bar) followed by Dinner & Awards at 7PM. Roarin' entertainment provided by Janus Theatre.

Tickets are $65 per person ($55 for DNA members), Sponsored Tables of 8 are $560 ($485 for DNA Members). 1920's-inspired evening apparel encouraged. Prizes awarded for the snazziest dressed Sheiks and Shebas.

Don't be a wet blanket! Get your glad rags on, jump on the trolley and RSVP by November 4 to (847) 488-1456 or RSVP and pay securely online at DowntownElgin.com

Other sponsorship packages and marketing opportunities are also available. Contact DNA Promotions Coordinator Jason Pawlowski at jpawlowski@elginil.org for more information.

Special thanks to our 2011 Presenting Sponsors TranSystems and Grand Victoria Casino.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Harvest Market Concludes 2011 Season Thursday, September 29


The Downtown Neighborhood Association invites you to join us this Thursday, September 29 from 10AM-4PM at the Old Library Lot, 200 N. Grove Avenue, for our final Downtown Elgin Harvest Market of the 2011 season.

Here are some of the activities planned for this week at the market:

* Jamlady Book Signing - All Day - our very own Jamlady, Beverly Alfeld, will be selling and signing copies of her books: The Jamlady Cookbook, a resource cookbook for the canner, gardener, gourmet chef, and health-conscious person; and Pickles to Relish, an encyclopedic cookbook with an ethnobotanical approach to cooking, canning, and living.
* City of Elgin Booth – The Centre of Elgin - information about their fall and winter services and programs.
* Chiro One Wellness Center Booth – information and free screenings for your overall health and wellness.
* Habitat for Humanity’s ReStore – information and more.
* ECCO/ECN’s Sustainable Booth – free CFL’s and learn about various ways to lessen your carbon footprint at home and work.
* Community Booth: Gail Borden Public Library - materials and promotion of upcoming library events, including the library's Hispanic Heritage month activities.

For more information about the Downtown Elgin Harvest Market, contact Harvest Market Manager Jennifer Benson at 847-488-1456 or e-mail ElginHarvestMarket@gmail.com.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Celebrate Andersen's 50th Anniversary Today at Gasthaus Outdoor Cookout


The DNA invites everyone to attend a special ceremony celebrating Andersen's Engraving's 50th Anniversary in downtown Elgin today.

Beginning at Noon today, join us for a special pre-ceremony lunchtime cookout at The Gasthaus, 15 N. Grove Avenue. They'll be cooking up burgers for $5.50 (plus tax & tip) and brats for $5.00 (plus tax & tip) as well as serving non-alcoholic beverages all on their beautiful, brand-new outdoor patio. The Gast's full lunch menu will also be available.

Then at 1PM we invite you to walk up the street to Andersen's, 27 N. Grove Avenue, where Elgin dignitaries will gather for a special ceremony, including the re-unveiling of the original Andersen's Gifts sign which marked the store's original location at 170 DuPage some 50 years ago.

The outdoor cookout at The Gasthaus goes until 2PM.

For custom engraving, trophies, wedding invitations, graduation announcements, greeting cards, gifts and foil imprinting services, call Andersen's today at 847-742-5434.

Please join the DNA in congratulating Andersen's Engraving on 50 years of service to the Elgin community!

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

This Week at the Downtown Elgin Harvest Market - September 22


Here's what's happening this week at the Downtown Elgin Harvest Market on Thursday, September 22 from 10am-4pm at the Old Library Lot, 200 N. Grove Avenue in downtown Elgin, across from the Gail Borden Public Library and adjacent to The Centre of Elgin and Hemmens Cultural Center.

- Back to School Market Day - 10am–2pm - students from local schools participating in various sustainable, agricultural, wellness sessions and food demonstrations.
- Davey Tree Booth – educational information about trees and our environment.
- City of Elgin Booth – Hemmens – information about their upcoming 2011-2012 season
- Simple Balance Holistic Center – information on wellness programs, packages, and upcoming workshops and events.
- Landin Chiropractic – performing free spinal screenings, with state-of-the-art equipment, using infrared cameras to measure the temperature of the nerve roots on the spine.
- ECCO/ECN’s Sustainable Booth: Hawthorne Hill Nature Center - information about nature programs for the fall and winter.
- Community Booth: Community Crisis Center - information regarding CCC's services and will be selling recycled fabric products, the proceeds of which benefit the Crisis Center.

The Downtown Elgin Harvest Market's 2011 season comes to a close next Thursday, September 29.

For more information about the Downtown Elgin Harvest Market, please contact Market Manager Jennifer Benson at 847-488-1456 or e-mail ElginHarvestMarket@gmail.com

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Mayor Kaptain to Speak at September Out to Lunch


The Downtown Neighborhood Association (DNA) of Elgin's next monthly "Out to Lunch" meeting will be Monday, September 26 at Bangkok House and Shanghai Restaurant, 11 Douglas Avenue. Networking begins at 11:45AM and the lunch program runs Noon-1PM.

The featured guest speaker for September will be City of Elgin Mayor David Kaptain.

For $12 per person (all inclusive with tax & tip included - cash only) guests will enjoy a lunch buffet consisting of Crab Rangoon, Thai Style Egg Rolls (vegetarian), Thai Yellow Curry with Chicken, Szechwan Beef, Chow Foon (vegetarian), seasonal fruits and choice of soft drinks or tea.

RSVP with your name and e-mail address to DNA Promotions Coordinator Jason Pawlowski by phone at 847-488-1456, by e-mail at jpawlowski@elginil.org or via our Online RSVP Form by no later than Friday, September 23.

The Out to Lunch Meetings, presented by the DNA and typically conducted on the last Monday of each month, are an effort to showcase a different downtown Elgin restaurant each month and engage the public by featuring guest speakers and topics relevant to the community. Recent Out to Lunch guest speakers have included City Manager Sean Stegall, Police Chief Jeff Swoboda, Downtown Elgin Harvest Market Manager Jennifer Benson and Provena St. Joseph Hospital CEO Dr. Eugene McMahon.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

'Mayor at the Market' Highlights This Week's Downtown Elgin Harvest Market


This week’s Downtown Elgin Harvest Market, taking place on Thursday, September 15 from 10AM-4PM at the Old Library Lot at 200 N. Grove Avenue, is highlighted by a special visit from Mayor David Kaptain entitled “Mayor at the Market”.

Mayor Kaptain will be on hand to discuss sustainability issues with market patrons from 11AM-12PM. The setting will be informal and “market munchies” will be available to those who wish to participate.

Other events and activities planned for this week’s Harvest Market include:

Davey Tree Booth ”Ask an Arborist” - Davey Tree will conduct a tree pruning demonstration.
Alexian Brothers Health System Booth – health information and screenings.
City of Elgin Booth – Fire Department will be on hand with their fire vehicles.
Salon Couture – check out their latest natural beauty products and services.
ECCO/ECN’s Sustainable Booth: Elgin Public Museum - promoting all of their exciting fall programming.
Community Booth: The Literacy Connection – information about their programs and upcoming events.

For more information about the Downtown Elgin Harvest Market, contact Market Manager Jennifer Benson at 847-488-1456 or e-mail ElginHarvestMarket@gmail.com

The 2011 Downtown Elgin Harvest Market season closes on Thursday, September 29.

Congratulations to Andersen's Engraving on 50 Years in Downtown Elgin


This September, Andersen's Engraving, 27 N. Grove Avenue in Elgin, is celebrating 50 years of service to the downtown Elgin community.

On Wednesday, September 14 at Elgin's City Council meeting at 7PM, Mayor David Kaptain will read a formal proclamation honoring owner Dave Andersen, by proclaiming September 21 Andersen's Engraving Day in Elgin.

Then on Wednesday, September 21 beginning at 1PM, owner Dave Andersen and other Elgin dignitaries will take part in a ceremony in front of the shop, which includes a very special unveiling of the original restored "Andersen's Gifts" sign that marked the shop's original storefront location at 170 DuPage.

As an added bonus, Andersen's neighbor The Gasthaus, 15 N. Grove Avenue, will offer a special pre-ceremony cook-out, featuring burgers, brats and non-alcoholic beverages, on their beautiful new outdoor patio for all attendees beginning at Noon.

S.J. Andersen opened Andersen's Gifts in September 1961 at 170 DuPage in downtown Elgin. Over its 50 years in business, the store has called several downtown locations home, including stints at 163 E. Chicago Street next to the old Wilson's Shoes where the Martini Room currently resides; 21 Douglas Avenue next to Keeney's Sporting Goods; and its current location at 27 N. Grove Avenue next to Artistic Framing and Supplies.

The core business of the shop has always focused on trophies, custom engraving services, wedding invitations, graduation announcements, greeting cards, gifts and foil imprinting services. For more information on available products, specific services and pricing, contact Dave Andersen at 847-742-5434.

The Downtown Neighborhood Association congratulates the Andersen family on a well-deserved 50th Anniversary celebration in downtown Elgin!

Photos of Andersen’s different storefronts from over the decades are available at http://photobucket.com/Andersens50th

Monday, September 12, 2011

Downtown Elgin Car Show Results


Over 70 different cars, trucks and alternative fuel vehicles rolled into Elgin’s Civic Parking Lot on Saturday, September 10 for the Downtown Neighborhood Association of Elgin’s 5th Annual Downtown Elgin Car Show – Presented by Ken Stepps State Farm.

In addition to raffles, silent auctions, music and other fun activities, participants and spectators alike were asked to cast their ballot for the vehicles they deemed Best in Show.

The overall winner of Best in Show was Ron Barclay of Gilberts and his 1958 Pontiac Bonneville. Barclay received a trophy from Ken Stepps of Ken Stepps State Farm Insurance Agency, 111 Douglas Avenue, courtesy of Andersen’s Engraving, 27 N. Grove Avenue.

Other winners included Kurt Berghahn of Sleepy Hollow with his Ford Model A; Joe Sant of Elgin with his 1957 Ford; and Jon Schwartz of Dundee with his 1936 Aston Martin. The People’s Choice Award winner was Bruce Flescher of Hampshire with his 1969 Chevy Chevelle.

The Downtown Neighborhood Association hosted two Cruise Nights in August, which included an impromptu cruise around the streets of downtown Elgin, to engage local car enthusiasts as well as promote the September car show.

The DNA would like to thank our car show sponsors, Ken Stepps State Farm, Chicago Area Clean Cities Coalition, Redmon's Towing, Kirkpatrick, Jones & Herzog and Tom's Auto Clinic; our booth sponsors, Huntington Learning Center, Chiro One Wellness and Titan Self Storage; our 2011 Car Show Committee Chair Rich Hirschberg; and everyone who participated in or attended this year's Downtown Elgin Car Show.

Click for a photo slideshow from the Downtown Elgin Car Show >>>

Friday, September 09, 2011

Downtown Elgin Car Show Details



The DNA's fifth annual Downtown Elgin Car Show - Presented by Ken Stepps State Farm takes place Saturday, September 10 from 9AM-3PM at the Civic Parking Lot at Highland and Douglas Avenue.

Registration and Check-In Procedures for Participants:

Registration begins at 9AM sharp! We will have minimal staff on hand at the Civic Lot setting things up so if you do arrive early, we would appreciate your patience in waiting until we are completely set up at 9AM to take your registration info.

If you have pre-registered AND pre-paid for your vehicle in advance, you just need to provide our check-in volunteers with your name so they can check you off the list. You will then receive your complimentary Car Show dash plaque and instructions on where to park your vehicle.

If you have pre-registered but did not pre-pay, our volunteer will also collect your information and the $5 registration fee from you. You will then receive your complimentary Car Show dash plaque and instructions on where to park your vehicle.

If you did not pre-register your vehicle, you will need to fill out a Car Show registration form and pay the $5 registration fee. Supplies permitting, you will then receive your complimentary Car Show dash plaque (they are first come, first served to non-preregistered particpants) and instructions on where to park your vehicle.

Judging/Awards

Participants will be handed a ballot at check-in to vote for your Top 3 vehicles in show. Please return your completed ballot to the DNA volunteer at the check-in tent before 1PM.

Car Show patrons can pick up their People's Choice Ballots at the DNA check-in tent. Ballots must be returned to the DNA volunteer at the check-in tent before 1PM.

Awards will be presented at 2:30PM.

•Plaques will be awarded to the 2nd-5th Place winners (based on our participants' votes) and a trophy to our Best in Show. There will also be a People's Choice Award trophy - as selected by guests in attendance at the Car Show.

Weather

The forecast is calling for a chance of rain on Saturday, thus we are enacting the following procedures should weather become an issue:

Prior to 9AM

•If there is heavy or sustained rain or threat of lightning in the area prior to 9AM, we will postpone the Car Show until Saturday, September 17, Civic Lot, 9AM-3PM.

•Light rain or drizzle will not cause the Car Show to be postponed.

After 9AM

•The Car Show will go on rain or shine. If the weather becomes a bigger issue after the Car Show has started, we will wait it out as long as possible then, if necessary, cancel the remainder of the show. We would not reschedule.

We will be keeping an eye on the weather beginning at 7AM that morning and will post updates about the status of the Car Show at DowntownElgin.com and on DNA's Facebook and Twitter accounts.


We look forward to a great weekend of activities in downtown Elgin - including the Car Show, Next Wave Art Salon, Elgin Historic House Tour, 9/11 Memorial Ceremony and Concert of Rememberance at Hemmens. Join us!

Tuesday, September 06, 2011

This Week at the Downtown Elgin Harvest Market - September 8


Here's what's happening this week at the Downtown Elgin Harvest Market - Presented by Alexian Brothers on Thursday, September 8 from 10AM-4PM at the Old Library Lot at 200 N. Grove Avenue, across from the Gail Borden Public Library and adjacent to The Centre of Elgin:

Vintage Cars at the Market - promoting the Downtown Elgin Car Show - Presented by Ken Stepps on Saturday, September 10 at the Civic Lot.

Live Entertainment – Grandpa Q singing and playing guitar - 10AM-Noon.

Davey Tree Booth–”Ask an Arborist” - educational information about trees and our environment.

City of Elgin Booth – staff from the Bluff City Cemetery will be on hand to provide information on the cemetery.

Simple Balance Holistic Center Booth– information about wellness programs and packages offered, as well as, upcoming workshops and events.

Landin Chiropractic Booth – performing free spinal screenings with state-of-the-art equipment, using infrared cameras to measure the temperature of the nerve roots on the spine.

ECCO/ECN’s Sustainable Booth: Elgin Area Historical Society – Apple press activity and promoting Bluff City Cemetary Walk on Saturday, September 24.

Community Booth: Gifford Park Association - will be present selling tickets to their upcoming Historic Elgin House Tour on September 10 & 11.

For more information on the Downtown Elgin Harvest Market, contact Market Manager Jennifer Benson at 847-488-1456 or e-mail ElginHarvestMarket@gmail.com

Downtown Elgin Car Show Rolls Into Fifth Year This Saturday


The 2011 Downtown Elgin Car Show - Presented by Ken Stepps State Farm returns to the Civic Parking Lot, at the intersection of Highland and Douglas Avenues, on Saturday, September 10 from 9AM-3PM.

Celebrating its fifth year, the Car Show will again showcase the area's hottest hot rods, classic cars, vintage vehicles and green/AFVs all in one location in the heart of downtown Elgin. There will also be entertainment, green seminars, car care clinics, food drive, vendor booths, and more! Trophies will be awarded to the best five cars in show as determined by the car show participants. A People's Choice Award, selected by the voting public, will also be given out.

The Downtown Elgin Car Show is FREE to the public! There is a $5 Registration Fee per vehicle. All pre-registered participants will receive a limited edition Downtown Elgin Car Show Dash Plaque at check-in.

To pre-register your vehicle(s) for the Downtown Elgin Car Show, click here!

Note to Downtown Residents, Employees and Business Owners: the Civic Parking Lot will be closed off to public parking from 7AM-3PM on Saturday, September 10. Street parking is available on the streets adjacent to the Civic Lot including Highland Avenue, Douglas Avenue and Division Street and FREE parking is available in the nearby parking decks on Spring Street and on Symphony Way across from The Centre. The Civic Lot will reopen to public parking at 3:30PM.

The rain date for the Downtown Elgin Car Show is Saturday, September 17.

The Downtown Neighborhood Association would like to thank our event sponsors Redmon's Towing, Tom's Auto Care and Kirkpatrick, Jones & Herzog Insurance, our booth sponsors Chiro One Wellness, Huntington Learning Center and Titan Self Storage, and a special thanks to our presenting sponsor Ken Stepps State Farm Insurance Agency.

Downtown Money Saving Discounts with Your Gail Borden Library Card


During September's National Library Card Sign-up Month, show your Gail Borden Library card at area merchants and receive a money-saving discount. Below is a list of participating downtown merchants and DNA members:

2 Doors Down Antiques
207 E. Chicago St.
10% off merchandise (except records)

Al’s Café
43 DuPage Court
10% off the check

Andersen’s Engraving
27 N. Grove Ave.
10% off all orders

Artistic Framing & Supplies
25 N. Grove Ave.
10% off framing & 15% off in-stock supplies

Bangkok House & Shanghai Restaurant
11 Douglas Ave.
10% off entire bill, excluding alcohol

Douglas Street Sports Bar
231 Douglas Ave.
5% off food

Elgin Antiques
203 E. Chicago St.
10% off merchandise

Elgin Books
209 E. Chicago St.
20% off purchase of books

Elgin Historical Museum
360 Park St.
10% off one regularly priced item in museum store

Elgin Public House
219 E. Chicago St.
$4 off two or more entrees (restrictions apply)

Elgin Public Museum
225 Grand Blvd.
10% off any item in the museum store

In the Neighborhood Deli & Café
185 N. Edison Ave.
10% off any order

La Quebrada Restaurant
50 N. Spring St.
Free dessert with purchase of $10 or more

Salon Couture
176 E. Chicago St.
15% off any one service or product; one discount per visit

Villa Verone
13 Douglas Ave.
5% off the total bill

To view the complete list of participating Elgin area merchants, visit GailBorden.info.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

This Week at Downtown Elgin Harvest Market’s September “First Thursday” Market



Here is a rundown of the happenings this week at the Downtown Elgin Harvest Market’s final “First Thursday” Market of the 2011 season on Thursday, September 1, with special extended hours from 10AM-6PM, at the Old Library Lot, 200 N. Grove Avenue, across from the Gail Borden Public Library and next to The Centre of Elgin.

Art at the Market – Keath Sodapop, a local artist and member of Art for All, will be interacting with customers creating urban/public art pieces, plus decorating ReStore outdoor furniture and objects that will be for sale at ReStore the next day.
Artz Zone - from 4-6PM where artists in the community have the opportunity to set up for free at the Harvest Market and sell/demo their art.
"Market Munchies" - available to market customers who shop between 4-6PM with a purchase over $15.
Kids’ Corner - complete with face painting, table games, coloring pages, puzzles, plus prizes and more will be provided by community sponsor, Highland Fellowship Church/Highland Christian Academy.
Live Entertainment - Strolling violinist Jennifer Silk between Noon – 1:30PM and singer/musicians Jams Clipper 4-6PM.
Alexian Brothers Health System Booth – health information and screenings.
Davey Tree Booth – educational information about trees and our environment.
City of Elgin Booth – Fire Department‘s water rescue and recovery team will be present with fire trucks, rescue boats, and more.
Chiro One Wellness Center Booth – information and free screenings for your overall health and wellness.
ECCO/ECN’s Sustainable Booth – get free CFL’s and learn about various ways you can get involved or lessen your carbon footprint at home and work.
Community Booth: International Teams – promoting their “Ride for Refuge” Fox Valley bike ride which will raise awareness and funds for refugees and anti-trafficking projects.

The Downtown Elgin Harvest Market - Presented by Alexian Brothers runs every Thursday from 10AM-4PM now through September 29.

For more information about the Downtown Elgin Harvest Market, please contact Harvest Market Manager Jennifer Benson at (847) 488-1456 or e-mail ElginHarvestMarket@gmail.com.

City of Elgin 9/11 Memorial Ceremony, Concert of Remembrance at Hemmens


On Sunday, September 11 at 3:30PM at the Hemmens Cultural Center, 45 Symphony Way, the Elgin Choral Union, along with the City of Elgin and the Elgin Symphony Orchestra, present A Concert of Remembrance - a collaborative performance to commemorate the Tenth Anniversary of the September 11 attacks.

This moving concert features John Adams’ Transmigration of Souls, written shortly after the attacks to exemplify the emotions & complexities of the tragedy; and Johannes Brahms’ Requiem, often referred to as the Human Requiem, written for the living as they remember those who have passed on.

The concert will also feature performances by Elgin Choral Union, Elgin Symphony Orchestra, Heartland Voices, Elgin Children’s Chorus, and Elgin OPERA.

Tickets are on available by calling the Hemmens' Box Office at 847-931-5900 or at Hemmens.org.

Preceding the concert at 1:30PM, join the City of Elgin for a September 11 Memorial Ceremony at Civic Plaza, 150 Dexter Court (behind City Hall), featuring a presentation of the colors, performance of The Star Spangled Banner, God Bless America and Amazing Grace, welcoming remarks by City of Elgin Mayor David Kaptain, sounding of the bells, rifle salute, Taps and more.

For additional information about the ceremony, please call 847-931-5677 or for a link to the complete rundown of the ceremony's itinerary, click here!

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

This Week at the Downtown Elgin Harvest Market - August 25


Here's what's happening at the Downtown Elgin Harvest Market this Thursday, August 25 from 10AM-4PM at the Old Library Lot at 200 N. Grove across from the Gail Borden Public Library and next to The Centre of Elgin:

* Davey Tree Booth – "Ask an Arborist" - will have educational information about trees and our environment

* City of Elgin Booth – Hemmens Cultural Center will be promoting their line-up of performances for the 2011-2012 season

* Chiro One Wellness Center Booth – will be on hand with information and free screenings for your overall health and wellness.

* ECCO/ECN’s Sustainable Booth: Hawthorne Hill Nature Center - will have information on their upcoming programs

* Community Booth: Gifford Park Association - will be selling tickets to their upcoming 30th Annual Elgin Historic House Tour on Saturday, September 10 and Sunday, September 11

For more information about the Downtown Elgin Harvest Market, contact Jennifer Benson at (847) 488-1456 or e-mail ElginHarvestMarket@gmail.com.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

This Week at the Downtown Elgin Harvest Market - August 18


Here's what's happening this Thursday, August 18 at the Downtown Elgin Harvest Market from 10AM-4PM at 200 N. Grove Avenue, located across from the Gail Borden Public Library and next to The Centre of Elgin:

Alexian Brothers Health System Booth – the Neurosciences folks and Joyce Ancona will be present to help market goers learn their stroke score cards and blood pressures.
Davey Tree Booth–"Ask an Arborist!" - educational information about trees and our environment.
Simple Balance Holistic Center – will have information on hand of wellness programs and packages offered, as well as upcoming workshops and events.
Salon Couture–an Aveda salon - will have information about their products and services, plus maybe a raffle or hand massage.
ECCO/ECN’s Sustainable Booth: Elgin Public Museum - Fun with pH! Test water samples to see if Elgin’s water is in balance; then test other liquids to see how they compare with water.
Community Booth: Community Crisis Center - will be providing information regarding their services and have Terri Naaf selling reusable fabric gift bags and other sewing crafts that will go 100% to the Community Crisis Center.
Find the Downtown Wandering Gnome! You will find clues posted at the market with a picture of the gnome hiding in a nearby DNA Downtown Member Organization/Business. First ten people to find the gnome within the next week will get a prize.
• Merchandise for Sale at the Downtown Neighborhood Association Booth:
  • - New Harvest Market T-shirts $10- $15
  • - Elgin Tower Building Puzzles $5
  • - Vintage Elgin Seeds Magnet $3.50
  • - Weekly Recipe Cards $1
• Become a DNA Harvest Market Member! Join DNA as a Harvest Market member for only $45 and get a free tote bag, free Vintage Seeds Magnet, membership card which helps you get a free raffle ticket at the DNA booth, 10% discounts on merchandise, and other specials, plus all of the benefits included with the DNA individual membership.

Click here to see photos of our new Harvest Market t-shirts > > >

For more information about the Downtown Elgin Harvest Market, contact Harvest Market Manager Jennifer Benson at (847) 488-1456 or e-mail ElginHarvestMarket@gmail.com

Tuesday, August 09, 2011

Downtown Elgin Pub Crawl Details


The following is a list of drink specials available to Downtown Elgin Pub Crawlers (for the night of August 12 only) who show their passports when ordering. All participating Downtown Elgin Pub Crawl establishments will be offering $3.00 Miller Lite bottles - courtesy of our presenting sponsor, Euclid Beverage.

The Gasthaus
15 N. Grove Avenue
847-695-8828

• The Moody Blues - $3

• Purple Haze - $3


Martini Room
161 E. Chicago Street
847-741-0349
www.MartiniRoomElgin.com

• Red Apple Martini - $6

• Cherry Sprite Mixed Drink - $5

• SoCo Lime Shot - $3


Douglas Street Sports Pub
231 Douglas Avenue
847-695-5659
www.DouglasStreetSportsBar.com

• LA Lemonade - $5

• All Three Olives Vodka Drinks - $5

• Summer Shante Drafts - $4


Villa Verone
13 Douglas Avenue
847-742-0263
www.VillaVerone.net

• Glass of House Wine (red or white) - $5

• Cucumber Shots - $2


Elgin Public House
219 E. Chicago Street
847-468-8810
www.ElginPublicHouse.com

• EPH Strawberry Lemonade - $5

• Peach Cobbler Shots - $3.50


The AfterSet
158 Symphony Way
847-608-7570

• Patron Pyrat Rum and Coke - $5

• Patron Citrogne Tequila and Sprite - $5


Medusa's
209 E. Chicago Street

• Drink specials TBA


Additionally, the streets of downtown Elgin will be alive with activity as several local musicians will be performing on street corners throughout the evening including:

• John Rodriguez & Dave Hudson – Highland & Douglas (southeast corner)
• The Reverends – Chicago & Douglas/S. Grove (southwest corner near park)
• Joe Haggenjos – Chicago & Spring (southwest corner near park)
• Annalee – Chicago & Spring (west of Spring deck entrance/exit)

For a $10 donation, crawlers will receive one raffle ticket for a cash prize of $500, as well as an official Downtown Elgin Pub Crawl lanyard (complete with bottle opener) courtesy of our presenting sponsor, Euclid Beverage.

Crawlers who visit at least FOUR of the 7 participating bars will receive a second raffle ticket for the $500 cash prize drawing. Each bar will also host a unique prize package - raffle tickets for these prizes are $1 each.

Donation proceeds and raffle ticket sales benefit the Downtown Neighborhood Association of Elgin to support the continued revitalization of downtown Elgin.

To avoid the lines at check-in, pre-register and pay online by clicking here!

Downtown Elgin Walk and Talk Slated for August 23

On Tuesday, August 23, the Elgin Police Department will conduct a "Walk and Talk" through the downtown Elgin business district from 2-4PM. The purpose of the Walk and Talk is for officers and members of the command staff to meet members of the downtown Elgin community and seek input regarding any issues facing downtown business owners and residents. Members of city staff, including code enforcement, will also be available to address questions or concerns. The walk will commence in front of the DNA office at 2 Douglas Avenue, where several groups will be formed to walk through the various areas in the downtown.

Any downtown business owner or resident who would like to participate in the walk should contact Lt. Bill Wolf at 847-289-2602 or email wolf_b@cityofelgin.org. The walk will conclude at the DNA office at 3:30PM for a quick wrap-up meeting and Q&A. This event is a great opportunity for members of the downtown area to work with the City of Elgin toward the common goal of hosting a thriving business district.

For more information, contact the DNA at (847) 488-1456 or e-mail downtownelgin@gmail.com.