Friday, October 31, 2014

Chamber Recognizes Twenty-Nine

The Pekin Area Chamber of Commerce hosted their 17th annual Business and Community Recognition Luncheon on Thursday, October 30 at the Pekin Country Club.  The chamber’s Member Promotions Committee coordinated the luncheon, which was sponsored by Enviro-Safe Refrigerants, Pekin Insurance, ActOnEnergy, Pekin Trophy House & Engraved Gifts, The Greenhouse Flower Shoppe, and Pekin Hospital.  Additional sponsors included CEFCU, Herget Bank, NRG Powerton, UnityPoint Health, ICPR Family Practice and South Side Bank.

Recognition was given to twenty-eight area businesses and organizations in the following categories:  “green” projects or programs; new ownership or management; new business or building; additional employees; major retraining effort; new technology or major equipment investment; other business improvements; and, community involvement.

Additionally, one business was recognized for 100 years of operations.

The speaker at the luncheon was Diana Hall, owner and president of Bard Optical.  Bard Optical was founded over 70 years ago in Peoria by Dr. A. Arthur Bard. In 1981 Diana J. Hall purchased Bard and the company grew from a single office to a noted, woman-owned, national leader in professional eyecare and quality eyewear. Bard Optical has now expanded to 20 locations in central and southern Illinois.

Hall shared some of her personal and business philosophies.  “The more you know, the more you know” was Hall’s way of saying that you always need to be learning and always growing.
Hall continually challenges the status quo at Bard’s.  “You either grow, or you fade away,” she said.  They have a goal to grow to 25 outlets.

Hall is actively involved in many community organizations and efforts.  She credited a chamber leadership academy as the force that pushed her into community service.

Chamber Board President Aindrea Balagna closed the program by thanking the audience for their support and their recognition of the accomplishments of others.  Fifty-Six businesses and organizations were represented by 195 attendees.

The twenty-eight businesses and organizations recognized for their achievements in the past year were:

American Cancer Society - Relay for Life of Pekin
BodyWealth Massage
Cullinan Properties LTD - East Court Village
Farmers Insurance - Tatlock Agency
Ferguson Plumbing
Gailey Eye Clinic
GroUp
Hallmark House Nursing Center
Herget Bank
ICPR Family Practice
Illinois American Water
Institute of Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation
iTV-3
Liberty Village of Pekin
Living Alternatives Pregnancy Resource Center
Pekin Animal Hospital
Pekin Hospital - Progressive Health Systems
Pekin Insurance, Pekin Hospital and the Unland Companies
Pekin Main Street
Preston-Hanley Funeral Homes & Crematory LLC
Servpro of Peoria & North Central Tazewell County
Sound Choice Hearing Clinic
South Side Trust & Savings Bank
Speakeasy Art Center
Sumer Wellness & Spa
Tazewell County Resource Centers, Inc.
United Way of Pekin
Velde Lincoln Volvo of Peoria

Midland Davis Corporation was recognized for a century of operations.

You can see pictures from this event at:  http://picasaweb.google.com/PekinChamber

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

NEW GAS PIPELINE WILL INCREASE CAPACITY

As part of a 10-year plan to strengthen and modernize its natural gas delivery system, Ameren Illinois is investing more than $10 million to construct a 4.5-mile transmission pipeline from Pekin to Tremont.

The project involves replacing pipeline originally installed in the 1930s with new, higher-strength 16-inch steel transmission pipeline. Emergency valves will also be replaced with modern new isolation valves. Work is currently underway and is expected to wrap up in early November.

In the second phase of the project, Ameren Illinois will replace 8.4 miles of steel transmission pipeline – from East Peoria to Tremont – in phases over the next two years. Transmission pipelines are larger pipelines that operate at higher pressures to transport large volumes of natural gas to and from compressor stations and storage facilities, as well as to distribution centers.

This project is essential for Ameren Illinois to continue providing safe and reliable service to Peoria and surrounding areas. Once completed, the new 16-inch steel transmission pipeline will have a greater load capacity and flexibility, which will allow Ameren Illinois to fully utilize the existing delivery infrastructure, including gas storage fields in Glasford and Lincoln.

Monday, October 27, 2014

Chamber Challenge Trivia Nite

Fourteen teams representing twelve chamber member organizations competed in the 10th Chamber Challenge Trivia Nite on Friday, October 24th.  Congratulations to the team from Illinois American Water Company on their victory.  Teams from Pekin Insurance, Liberty Village of Pekin, and CEFCU also won prizes for best costumes, best decorations and best team spirit.  You can see more pictures from this event at http://picasaweb.google.com/PekinChamber

October Biz Barometer

Pekin's economic indicators were all fairly favorable in September, with sales tax receipts, employment, and home prices all trending positively.

Pekin's October sales tax disbursement from the state was up 3.6% compared to the same month a year ago. The 3-month running average was up 0.8% while the 12-month running average was down 9.8% compared to the same periods one year ago.

The remaining three large Tazewell County communities showed growth in their October disbursements from the state, compared to a year ago.  East Peoria was up 17.9%, Morton was up 6.5%, and Washington was up 0.2%.

September sales tax disbursements for the four large Tazewell County communities as a whole, were up 8.7% compared to October of 2013. That continues a positive trend: the 3 month running average is up 6.9% and the 12-month running average is up 2.7% compared to the same periods one year ago.

J The unemployment rate in Pekin dropped to 6.9% in September, down from 8.8% in August. That is the lowest unemployment rate in Pekin since October of 2008. The September unemployment rate in Tazewell County was 6.1%, down from 7.3% in August.

Only 1,138 people were unemployed (collecting benefits & seeking employment) in Pekin in September. That is the lowest number since May of 2008.

15,366 people were working in Pekin in September, up 54 from August.

Through September a total of 321 residential units have been sold in Pekin.  That is down 9.1% compared to the same period a year ago.  Washington (-21.6%), and Morton (-16.2%) were also reported lower sales  and East Peoria (+2.0%) reported higher sales through September, compared to the same period a year ago.

The average sales price of residential units in Pekin was $115, 918 for the first 9 months of the year. That is a 6.0% increase over the same period in 2013. Morton ($206,212, +7.8%) and Washington ($195,153, +8.6%) also reported increase sales prices, while East Peoria ($137,003, -0.3%) was virtually unchanged.

J In the United States, total nonfarm payroll employment increased by 248,000 in September, and the unemployment rate declined to 5.9 pecent. Employment increased in professional and business services, retail trade, and health care.

The Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U) increased 0.1 percent in September on a seasonally adjusted basis.  Over the last 12 months, the all items  index increased 1.7 percent before seasonal adjustment.

Sources: Peoria Area Association of Realtors, Illinois Department of Employment Security, Illinois Department of Revenue, US Bureau of Labor Statistics

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Peoria Rivermen: Bruce Saurs Hockey Weekend in Peoria

The Peoria Rivermen will pay tribute to legendary owner Bruce Saurs on opening weekend this year with “Bruce Saurs Hockey Weekend in Peoria,” presented by Heritage Bank, on Friday, Oct. 24 and Saturday, Oct. 25 at Carver Arena. Both nights will feature a 7:05 p.m. puck drop against Huntsville, as well as a big-time giveaway, specialty jerseys and a fantastic group ticket special.

With the support of Heritage Bank, the Rivermen will offer free magnetic schedules to the first 1,500 fans through the doors both Friday and Saturday. Plus, ticket prices will be knocked back to just $8 to commemorate “88” years of life for the Peoria sports icon, who passed away July 10.

Furthermore, the Rivermen will honor Saurs by wearing special edition jerseys each night. The custom sweaters, which bare the Peoria Journal Star’s image of Saurs drinking from the IHL’s Turner Cup during the 1990-91 season, will be auctioned off live at Carver Arena following the Saturday night contest. $2 hot dogs and $2 Bud Light drafts will also be available each night courtesy of the Peoria Civic Center, Centerplate Catering and Bud Light.

To order tickets call the Rivermen Office at 309-676-1040.

SOUTH SIDE TRUST & SAVINGS BANK OPENS NEW NORTHPOINT FINANCIAL CENTER

South Side Trust & Savings Bank, a subsidiary of Mid Illinois Bancorp, Inc., is pleased to announce the Grand Opening of their new Northpoint Financial Center, located at 8919 N. Knoxville Ave., in Peoria, Illinois on Monday, October 27, 2014.  A ribbon cutting will be held on Monday, October 27, 2014 at 10:00 a.m.  A Grand Opening Celebration will be held Monday, October 27th through Friday, October 31st, with refreshments and drawing for a 16GB-Wifi iPad Air.

The new Northpoint Financial Center is a first class financial center with Wealth Management (Trust and Brokerage) as well as full Personal and Business Deposit and Loan Services.  Dwayne Banks serves as Manager of the Northpoint Financial Center along with Rich Firebaugh – Senior Vice President & Trust Officer, Tamie Pearson – Financial Advisor, Bill Koenig – Assistant Vice President Commercial Lender, and Angie Menefee – Mortgage Loan Consultant.

Banks has worked in the banking industry for 34 years, serving as the manager of the Northpoint Facility at South Side Bank for the past 17.  He attended Peoria High School, and is a member of 1977 State Championship Basketball Team.  Banks went on to receive a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration from Western Illinois University.    He was inducted into the Western Illinois University Hall of Fame in 2002.  Banks is Secretary of South Side Office of Concern Board of Directors and Treasurer of The Pier NFP Board of Directors. 

Firebaugh has been in banking since 1976, and with South Side Bank since 1991. He serves the Bank as Senior Vice President, Trust Officer, and Manager of the Trust Department.  Firebaugh has a Bachelor of Arts Degree from MacMurray College and received his Law Degree from the University of Illinois. In 1996, he was appointed by the Governor to serve on the Illinois Corporate Fiduciary Advisory Committee. Firebaugh has been a teacher and speaker for the American Institute of Banking and Illinois Bankers Association, and is a past chairperson of the Illinois Bankers Association Trust and Investment Conference. 

Pearson has 24 years of experience in the financial industry.  She obtained her State of Illinois Insurance License in 1994 and completed the necessary requirement for her Series 7 and 63 licenses to become a Financial Advisor in 1998.  Pearson is licensed to assist the public with a wide range of financial planning and investment opportunities.  She specializes in financial and retirement planning. 
Koenig has 25 years of banking experience.  He has focused the last 13 years of his career in Commercial Lending.  Koenig is a graduate of Southern Illinois University-Carbondale with a major in Finance/Business Management.  He is also a graduate of the School of Banking at the University of Wisconsin.  Koenig is on the finance committee at the Willow Hills United Methodist Church, is treasurer of the Rotary Club of Peoria, serves on the collections committee of the Peoria Riverfront Museum, and is a basketball and hockey coach. 

Menefee has worked in the banking industry for 29 years.  Menefee is involved in fundraising for the Tuscarora Fire Department, Children’s Hospital of Illinois, Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation, and Peoria Area Renegades Rugby Club.  Menefee works with Conventional, FHA, VA, and Rural Development and Construction loans.  She has worked with different grant programs, including IHDA, City of Peoria, and Down Payment Plus. 

South Side Trust & Savings Bank, a locally owned financial institution since 1922, has $657 million in assets and serves the tri-county area with 12 full service locations in Peoria, East Peoria, West Peoria, Bartonville, Chillicothe, Washington, and Pekin.  South Side Bank owns Mid Illinois Insurance Services, Inc. located at 1524 W. Glen Avenue in Peoria. 

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Check out your weekly Chamber Connection!!

See what is going on this week! Check out the Chamber Connection!

GOODWILL RECEIVES MONETARY DONATION FROM THE DOWNING FOUNDATION

Goodwill of Central Illinois has received a donation of $150,000 from the General Wayne A. Downing Foundation. The presentation was made at Goodwill’s Reception of Honor, held October 10, 2014. The event recognized veterans and supporters of veterans. The General Wayne A. Downing Foundation keeps his legacy alive through inspiration, shaping the leaders of tomorrow, as well as education and support of our military heroes. The foundation maintains the Memorial Garden and Education Wall at the General Wayne A. Downing International Airport. In addition, they collaborate on and fund the General Wayne A. Downing Scholarship at Illinois Central College. The foundation also supports the General Wayne A. Downing Home for Veterans, which is operated by Goodwill of Central Illinois. The home provides a secure, intensive and holistic environment for honorably discharged homeless male veterans who have a diagnosed disability. Since opening, in 2005 the residence has provided a home for 106 veterans. The donation to Goodwill will be used as part of a capital campaign to add a wing, including six bedrooms to the veterans’ home. “The Downing Foundation has made it their mission to keep this great man’s legacy alive,” said Patty Fuchs, Goodwill President & CEO. “We are honored to be entrusted with this mission and see our duty as clear. Through our veterans’ home, Goodwill will continue to house, support and reintegrate these men into the community - a community whose freedom is made possible through the service of our veterans. For more information regarding The General Wayne A. Downing Foundation, visit their website at www.generaldowning.org. For more information regarding Goodwill of Central Illinois, log onto www.goodwillpeo.org.

Pekin Area Chamber of Commerce Lends Support To Small Business Saturday® And Drives Commerce To Pekin Area Small Businesses

The Pekin Area Chamber of Commerce  today announced its participation in this year’s Small Business Saturday, taking place on November 29, 2014. Small Business Saturday is a day dedicated to strengthening the community by supporting local small businesses.

Now in its fifth year, Small Business Saturday serves as the ceremonial kickoff to the holiday shopping season for small businesses across the United States. In 2013, nearly 1,500 Neighborhood Champions rallied local businesses and created events and activities to drive shopping at small businesses around the country. The day was also championed by elected officials in all 50 states and Washington D.C., including President Obama who took his daughters shopping at a local bookstore.

The Pekin Area Chamber of Commerce recognizes the importance of supporting small business in central Illinois, the jobs they help create and the culture they instill in local communities. According to the U.S. Small Businesses Administration, as of 2012, small businesses nationwide accounted for 64% of net new private-sector jobs created and represented 99.7% of all employer firms.

Merchants and consumers can learn more about Small Business Saturday and how to get involved by visiting ShopSmall.com and the official Small Business Saturday Facebook page.

Monday, October 20, 2014

Welcome Our New Member

Service Master of Central Illinois501 Meadows Ave.
East Peoria, IL 61611
309-694-9821
Steven Fleming, Owner
Scott Phegley, Marketing
Joe Isbell, Accounting/Finance 
www.servicemasterci.com
24/7 Disaster restoration services. "Restoring Peace of Mind"

Welcome Our New Member

Sazani's901 Chateau Dr
North Pekin, IL 61554
309-583-0094
Ben, Manager
Lani, Assitant Manager 
www.sazanis.com
Specializing in Italian food, steaks and seafood.

Faith Baptist Christian School Run/Walk 3R5K


Friday, October 17, 2014

ServiceMaster of Central Illinois Celebrates

Representatives from the Pekin, Peoria and East Peoria chambers of commerce recently gathered together for a ribbon cutting at ServiceMaster of Central Illinois. The new owner, Steven Fleming, along with his family and some employees
participated in the event. Located at 501 Meadows Avenue in East Peoria, Service Master of Central Illinois provides 24/7 emergency service for those dealing with fire or water damage. They can be reached at (309) 694-9821 or www.servicemasterci.com.  You can see more pictures from this event at:  http://picasaweb.google.com/PekinChamber.

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Growth continues at Peoria International Airport

In 7 of the first 9 months of 2014 the General Wayne A. Downing Peoria International Airport (PIA) has seen an all-time record number of passengers travel through its facilities. September 2014 represents the 7th consecutive month of the best passenger growth in the history of the airport with 51,820 people choosing PIA. Similar records were set at PIA in March, April, May, June, July and August of 2014 with each month showing an average of a 7% increase from the year before.

“PIA’s leadership and the people who work hard at the airport every day are grateful for the customer loyalty we have seen in 2014. It is our privilege to try to make everyone’s travel experience as good as it can be,” said Gene Olson, Director of Airports. “The opportunities that lay ahead for the Peoria International Airport are many and we are excited to see what the future can bring as we continue to serve our business and leisure travelers and grow our connection to the global landscape,” added Olson.

Through September 2014, PIA had seen 481,167 travelers flying to one of the airport’s 11 non-stop destinations. The most recently established route will take PIA passengers directly to Orlando  Sanford starting November 14.

The General Wayne A. Downing Peoria International Airport currently provides service to ten destinations on four airlines: Allegiant to Orlando/Sanford, Las Vegas, Tampa/St. Pete FL, Phoenix/Mesa, and Ft.Myers/Punta Gorda, FL; American to Chicago and Dallas/Ft. Worth; Delta to Atlanta, Detroit, and Minneapolis; and United to Chicago and Denver. Air freight service is provided by UPS and FedEx serving Central Illinois with daily flights to major freight hubs. General Aviation is served by Byerly Aviation at PIA and Peoria Aviation at the Mt. Hawley Airport.

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Timbercreek Halloween Trick or Treat


United Way of Pekin Community Food Drive


GOODWILL HONORS VETERANS WITH PATRIOT WEEKEND

Goodwill of Central Illinois, in conjunction with The General Wayne A Downing Foundation, has completed its Patriot Weekend. Festivities included Reception of Honor, Forward March & Run and Stand Down for Homeless Veterans. Each event honored our veterans and raised funds for their continued support. Goodwill’s Reception of Honor was held on Friday, October 10, 2014 and recognized local veterans and supporters of local veterans.

The Veteran Patriot Award, sponsored by The Wyman Group, was presented to J. Ryan Hubbard.
The Citizen Patriot Award, sponsored by Vonachen Services, went to Lesley Matuszak.
The Military Patriot Award, sponsored by P.J. Hoerr, was given to Captain Daniel Curtin.
The Business/Association Patriot Award, sponsored by Lincoln Office, was presented to
The Greater Peoria Honor Flight.
The General Wayne A. Downing Award was given to one of the four Patriot Award winners. J. Ryan Hubbard was presented with this honor.

Saturday, October 11, 2014 saw 250 runners and marchers participate in Goodwill’s Forward March & Run. The event, held at Dozer Park, consisted of a one mile march, a four mile run or an eight mile run. Proceeds from the race will go to fund Goodwill’s Veterans’ Services Program.
Following the race, 171 homeless veterans were served at Goodwill’s Stand Down for Homeless Veterans, also held at Dozer Park. Goodwill, along with other social service agencies, local businesses, and veterans’ services organizations, provided homeless veterans with food, winter clothing, personal hygiene products, information on services available to them, and an opportunity for a meal, a hot shower and a haircut.
“It was an entire weekend devoted to our veterans and showing our appreciation for their service. We wish never to take our freedom for granted and it’s events like these that make sure we don’t”, said Patty Fuchs, Goodwill President & CEO.

Friday, October 10, 2014

Puttin' On Pekin

Nearly 70 chamber members and their guests attended the October 10th Puttin' On Pekin breakfast.  Joy Knollenberg won the early prize, while Mitch O'Shaughnessy won the late prize. Illinois American Water was presented with the Spotlight on Business; Destiny Shafer accepted the Blue Ribbon Award for Dunkin' Donuts; Leon Edwards accepted the Sunshine Award for the Center for Prevention of Abuse. Leigh Ann Brown, the Director of Economic Development for the City of Pekin, was the program.  You can see more pictures from this and other chamber events at:  http://picasaweb.google.com/PekinChamber

Champion Fitness Patient Rewards Program 3rd Quarter Winners Selected

The three $100 Gift Card Winners of the Champion Fitness Patient Rewards Program have been selected for the 3rd quarter. 

Carol L. Miller
Linda Coley
and Brandon Kozloff

were chosen from the pool of candidates that were collected during the months of July, August and September.

Any and all past patients, along with those who refer others to Champion for physical therapy, are eligible for the contest. Names are collected on a quarterly basis, with winners being named in April, July, October, and January. The 4th quarter list of candidates is already underway and those winners will be drawn in January, 2015.

"The idea for this promotion came as a result of Champion wishing to thank individuals for having confidence in our abilities to provide outstanding physical therapy to our patients," said owner Jeff Schade. 

"Whether that person chose to return to us for their most recent therapy needs, or they recommended someone else to try Champion, we really appreciate the opportunity to help that person or that special someone 'Get Busy Living.'" 
Congratulations to our winners! Hopefully, YOUR name will be chosen in January, 2015 when our next drawing takes place!!!!
  
Mike Cohlman
CEO, Champion Fitness Physical Therapy

Illinois American Water Reminds Customers to Protect Pipes Now in Preparation for Winter Weather


           — Winter weather can pose many challenges to a homeowner.  One of the biggest and most costly is frozen pipes.   Illinois American Water reminds homeowners to make preparations now to prevent water damage from frozen pipes.


Illinois American Water’s Vice President of Operations Barry Suits said, “This last winter was one of the coldest on record in Illinois.  It serves as a reminder for completing important cold weather preparation.  A few simple steps taken this fall can help prevent costly repairs this winter.”  Illinois American Water offers these tips to help customers prepare before cold weather:
·        Search your house for un-insulated pipes, especially in unheated areas. Consider wrapping pipes with electric heating tape, but follow manufacturers' instructions carefully to avoid a fire hazard.
·        Know what areas are vulnerable to freezing, including basements, crawl spaces, unheated rooms and outside walls.
·        Eliminate sources of cold air near water lines by repairing broken windows, insulating walls, closing off crawl spaces and eliminating drafts near doors.  Seal cracks and holes in outside walls and foundations, especially where cable TV or phone lines enter the house, with caulking to keep cold winds away from pipes.
·        Check sprinkler or irrigation systems. Turn everything off and fully drain the system.  Also make certain the water to your hose bibs is shut off inside your house (via a turnoff valve), and that the lines are disconnected and drained.
·        For outside meters, keep the lid to the meter pit closed tightly and let any snow that falls cover it. Snow acts as insulation so don’t disturb it.
·        Drain and shut off entirely the water to any unoccupied residence. A loss of power during a winter storm could cause pipes to freeze. If you intend to leave a property entirely without heat, be sure to drain all water.
·        Set the thermostat at 55 degrees if you’re going out of town.  This setting is considered to be safe for pipes.

“Frozen pipes can leave customers without water in the worst of weather.  Running a trickle of water during freezing temps can help prevent damage,” said Suits.  He offered these tips for when temperatures fall below zero:
·        Allow a small trickle of water from both your cold and hot water faucets to run overnight to keep pipes from freezing. The cost of the extra water is low compared to the cost to repair a broken pipe.  Customers should also consider a wise water use practice and collect the running water for later use.
·        Open cabinet doors to expose pipes to warmer room temperatures.
If pipes freeze customers should:
·        Make sure everyone in their home know where the main water shut-off valve is and how to turn it off and on.  If a pipe freezes or bursts, the water should be shut off immediately.  Don’t attempt to thaw frozen pipes unless the water is shut off.  Freezing can often cause unseen cracks in pipes or joints that will leak when thawed.
·        Apply heat to frozen pipe by warming the air around it or applying heat directly to the pipe. You can use a hair dryer, space heater or hot water. Be sure to not leave space heaters unattended and avoid the use of kerosene heaters or open flames.
·        Once the pipes have thawed, turn the water back on slowly and check for cracks and leaks.

About Illinois American Water
Illinois American Water, a subsidiary of American Water (NYSE: AWK), is the largest investor-owned water utility in the state, providing high-quality and reliable water and/or wastewater services to more than 1.2 million people. American Water also operates a customer service center in Alton and a quality control and research laboratory in Belleville.  Founded in 1886, American Water is the largest publicly traded U.S. water and wastewater utility company.  With headquarters in Voorhees, N.J., the company employs more than 6,600 dedicated professionals who provide drinking water, wastewater and other related services to approximately 14 million people in more than 40 states, as well as parts of Canada. More information can be found by visiting
www.amwater.com

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Check out your Weekly Chamber Connection!!!

Don't forget to check out the Weekly Chamber Connection! And don't forget to RSVP for the Puttin' On Pekin breakfast this Friday!!

Welcome to our Newest Member!

Dan's Signs
1012 Derby St.
Pekin, IL 61554
309-620-7550
Velma Mylott
Danell Brooks 

Offering a variety of signs to fit your personal or business needs. Dan's Signs offers vinyl, plastic, and electric signs. They also offer banners, yard signs, and more.

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Spaghetti Dinner to Benefit Carol House of Hope at The Center for Prevention of Abuse

October 18th, 2014 from 5pm - 7pm at the American Legion Hall (718 Court St, Pekin, IL 61554), there will be a Spaghetti Dinner to benefit the Carol House of Hope at the Center for Prevention of Abuse. This event will be hosted by the Ladies Auxiliary Amvets. There will be vendors, raffle items and a 50/50 raffle. For more information contact Mary Kirby at 309-246-8435.

2014 Women's Leadership Network

The YWCA Fall 2014 Pekin Women's Leadership Network is now accepting applications for participants. The Pekin Women’s Leadership Network empowers women to become effective leaders by providing essential skills and strategies for professional and personal growth. A variety of carefully tailored programs are designed to support women in all phases of their careers. To get more information or an application click here.

Relay For Life Upcoming Events

The Relay for Life team will be available to share information with you on October 23rd at the Avanti's Dome during the Pekin's Night Out Against Crime Event. They will be available from 6pm - 8pm.  Find them on facebook for more information on upcoming events: https://www.facebook.com/PFCNazareneAmbassadorsTeamRelayForLife20142015?fref=ts

Illinois American Water’s Pekin Water Tank in the Running for Tank of the Year

Pekin residents encouraged to vote for the Marigold-adorned tank

Illinois American Water’s new 1.25-million-gallon elevated water storage tank located at 1700 Riverway Drive in Pekin is in the running to be named Tank of the Year.  Tnemec Company is hosting the Tank of the Year contest. 

Pekin residents are encouraged to vote for the tank, which features the City of Pekin’s unique marigold logo.  Voting begins today, Monday, Oct. 6, at www.tnemec.com/tankof the year. 

Contest rules allow one vote per person during the two week voting period.  As a result of the voting, Tnemec will select the Tank of the Year winner from the top 12 tanks.  A fan favorite determined by the number of votes will also be announced.

According to Roger Goodson, operations superintendent for Illinois American Water’s Pekin District, the new elevated water tank is an investment of over $3 million for reliable water service. “The new tank helps ensure adequate supply for residents, businesses and fire protection.  We are especially proud of the tank’s design and that it features the City of Pekin’s beautiful Marigold logo.” said Goodson.

The spheroid tank design required minimal land use, reducing environmental impact. The construction of the tank is part of an overall improvement plan which also includes a new booster station and distribution pipe improvements. 

About Illinois American Water
Illinois American Water, a wholly owned subsidiary of American Water (NYSE: AWK), is the largest investor-owned water utility in the state, providing high-quality and reliable water and/or wastewater services to approximately 1.2 million people. American Water also operates a customer service center in Alton and a quality control and research laboratory in Belleville. 

Founded in 1886, American Water is the largest publicly traded U.S. water and wastewater utility company.  With headquarters in Voorhees, N.J., the company employs more than 6,600 dedicated professionals who provide drinking water, wastewater and other related services to approximately 14 million people in more than 40 states, as well as parts of Canada. More information can be found by visiting www.amwater.com

Monday, October 6, 2014

Business After Hours at the Speakeasy

The Speakeasy Art Center hosted the October 2nd Business After Hours.  Guests enjoyed good food and drinks, door prizes, and networking with other business and community leaders.  You can see more pictures from this great event at:  http://picasaweb.google.com/PekinChamber.  For more information on the Speakeasy's upcoming events, visit http://speakeasyartcenter.com.


Liberty Village Ribbon Cutting

Representatives from the Pekin Area Chamber of Commerce and the City of Pekin held a ribbon cutting at Liberty Village of Pekin on October 1st.  The event was in recognition of Liberty Village's newly opened Bounce Back Program consisting of specialized rehabilitation services.  Don Fike, president of RFMS, Inc., was joined by the local staff of Liberty Village of Pekin for the ribbon cutting.  For more information about the Bounce Back Program visit http://www.libertyvillageofpekin.com or call 353-1600.  You can see more pictures from this and other chamber events at http://picasaweb.google.com/PekinChamber.

Friday, October 3, 2014

Avanit's Dome Banquet Rental


GOODWILL TO HONOR LOCAL PATRIOTS

Goodwill of Central Illinois, in conjunction with The General Wayne A Downing Foundation, will host, Reception of Honor, on October 10, 2014 at Goodwill Commons.
The event will begin at 5:00 pm and recognize the people, military members and organizations who provide exemplary support for our veterans. “It is so important to not only honor our veterans and members of the military, but also the people and organizations who support them,” said Patty Fuchs, Goodwill President and CEO. “We are looking forward to a night of patriotism, followed the next day by our Forward March & Run race and Stand Down for Homeless Veterans.”
The following awards will be presented:
THE VETERAN PATRIOT AWARD
Honors a U.S. veteran from any branch of service who has used his or her military experience to provide support to veterans and our community.
THE MILITARY PATRIOT AWARD
Acknowledges an active U.S. military member who shows courage and determination while working to ensure services and support systems are in place for all veterans.
THE CITIZEN PATRIOT AWARD
Honors a civilian who brings awareness to the needs and issues faced by veterans to improve their care and public support.
THE BUSINESS / ASSOCIATION PATRIOT AWARD
Recognizes an organization that has gone above and beyond to support veterans, active members of the Guard and Reserve, and active –duty military personnel.
To find out more about how Goodwill of Central Illinois supports our veterans, please visit www.goodwillpeo.org.

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Weekly Chamber Connection

Don't forget to check out the weekly Chamber Connection!!! Business After Hours is TOMORROW! Check the Chamber Connection for the location!

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Speakeasy Art Center Upcoming Events



SEP 30
Young Artist Class
Every Tuesday for 6 weeks the kids will meet and create and then have an exhibit show to show off their work. Email speakeasyerica@yahoo.com for more info https://www.facebook.com/events/766932503370784/
4:00pm

SEP 30
Kindermusik Move & Groove-
There is a variety of Kindermusik classes available at the Speakeasy Art Center. Visit http://www.kindermusik.com/singoutstudios/ for more info
5:00pm

SEP 30
Kindermusik Laugh & Learn
There is a variety of Kindermusik classes available at the Speakeasy Art Center. Visit  http://www.kindermusik.com/singoutstudios/ for more info
6:00pm

OCT 01
Kindermusik Sing & Play
There is a variety of Kindermusik classes available at the Speakeasy Art Center. Visit http://www.kindermusik.com/singoutstudios/ for more info
10:00am

OCT 01
Kindermusik Cuddle & Bounce
There is a variety of Kindermusik classes available at the Speakeasy Art Center. Visit http://www.kindermusik.com/singoutstudios/ for more info
11:00am

OCT 01
Crafty Kids Club
Join us every 1st & 3rd Wednesday for Crafty Kids Club! Membership $20 a month with a sibling discount. Email classes@speakeasyartcenter.com to register and get all of the exciting details!
4:30pm

OCT 01
Kindermusik Wiggle and Grow
There is a variety of Kindermusik classes available at the Speakeasy Art Center. Visit http://www.kindermusik.com/singoutstudios/ for more info
6:00pm

OCT 01
Open Mic Night-
Open Stage is for musicians to network with other local talent for evening. Held on the first and third Wed. of each month. $5 cover BYOB and snacks
7:00pm

OCT 02
Kindermusik Laugh & Learn
There is a variety of Kindermusik classes available at the Speakeasy Art Center. Visit http://www.kindermusik.com/singoutstudios/ for more info
11:00am

OCT 02
Canvas & Cocktails with Terri Gambetti  is a social painting class mixed with wine and fun. Email tsgambetti@aol.com to register
6:30pm

OCT 06
Kindermusik Cuddle & Bounce
There is a variety of Kindermusik classes available at the Speakeasy Art Center. Visit http://www.kindermusik.com/singoutstudios/ for more info
5:00pm

OCT 07
Young Artist Class
Every Tuesday for 6 weeks the kids will meet and create and then have a exhibit show to show off their work. Email speakeasyerica@yahoo.com for more info https://www.facebook.com/events/766932503370784/
4:00pm

OCT 07
Kindermusik Move & Groove
There is a variety of Kindermusik classes available at the Speakeasy Art Center. Visit http://www.kindermusik.com/singoutstudios/ for more info
5:00pm

OCT 07
Kindermusik Laugh & Learn
There is a variety of Kindermusik classes available at the Speakeasy Art Center. Visit http://www.kindermusik.com/singoutstudios/ for more info
6:00pm

OCT 08
Kindermusik Sing & Play
There is a variety of Kindermusik classes available at the Speakeasy Art Center. Visit http://www.kindermusik.com/singoutstudios/ for more info
10:00am

OCT 08
Kindermusik Cuddle & Bounce
There is a variety of Kindermusik classes available at the Speakeasy Art Center. Visit http://www.kindermusik.com/singoutstudios/ for more info
11:00am

OCT 08
Zen Doodle with Leslie is class revolved around doodling and relaxation. Bring your own wine and get your zen on.
6:00pm

OCT 08
Kindermusik Wiggle and Grow
There is a variety of Kindermusik classes available at the Speakeasy Art Center. Visit http://www.kindermusik.com/singoutstudios/ for more info
6:00pm

OCT 09
Kindermusik Laugh & Learn
There is a variety of Kindermusik classes available at the Speakeasy Art Center. Visit http://www.kindermusik.com/singoutstudios/ for more info
11:00am

OCT 10
Salsa Lessons & Open Dance  
Come out for a fun night with lessons in Salsa, Merengue, and Bachata and music by DJ Caballero. Lessons will be from 8-9PM with open dance from 9-midnight. Bring your own snacks and drinks to enjoy! $7 at the door.
8:00pm

OCT 13
Kindermusik Cuddle & Bounce
There is a variety of Kindermusik classes available at the Speakeasy Art Center. Visit http://www.kindermusik.com/singoutstudios/ for more info
5:00pm

OCT 13
Open Watercolor With Erica-
Open watercolor with Erica is a fun night to experiment with watercolor technique and network with other local artists
5:30pm

OCT 14
Young Artist Class
Every Tuesday for 6 weeks the kids will meet and create and then have a exhibit show to show off their work. Email speakeasyerica@yahoo.com for more info https://www.facebook.com/events/766932503370784/
4:30pm

OCT 14
Kindermusik Move & Groove
There is a variety of Kindermusik classes available at the Speakeasy Art Center. Visit http://www.kindermusik.com/singoutstudios/ for more info
5:00pm

OCT 14
Kindermusik Laugh & Learn
There is a variety of Kindermusik classes available at the Speakeasy Art Center. Visit http://www.kindermusik.com/singoutstudios/ for more info
6:00pm

OCT 15
 Kindermusik Sing & Play
There is a variety of Kindermusik classes available at the Speakeasy Art Center. Visit http://www.kindermusik.com/singoutstudios/ for more info
10:00am

OCT 15
Kindermusik Cuddle & Bounce
There is a variety of Kindermusik classes available at the Speakeasy Art Center. Visit http://www.kindermusik.com/singoutstudios/ for more info
11:00am

OCT 15
Crafty Kids Club
Join us every 1st & 3rd Wednesday for Crafty Kids Club! Membership $20 a month with a sibling discount. Email classes@speakeasyartcenter.com to register and get all of the exciting details!
4:30pm

 OCT 15
Kindermusik Wiggle and Grow
There is a variety of Kindermusik classes available at the Speakeasy Art Center. Visit http://www.kindermusik.com/singoutstudios/ for more info
6:00pm

OCT 15
Open Mic Night
Open Stage is for musicians to network with other local talent for evening. Held on the first and third Wed. of each month. $5 cover BYOB and snacks
7:00pm

OCT 16
Kindermusik Laugh & Learn
There is a variety of Kindermusik classes available at the Speakeasy Art Center. Visit http://www.kindermusik.com/singoutstudios/ for more info
11:00am

OCT 16
Stitch & Bitch is night to bring your yarn, fiber or looms and hang out with others of alike interests. Share your talents or learn a new one.
Free event!
6:00pm

OCT 16
Canvas & Cocktails with Terri Gambetti is a social painting class mixed with wine and fun. Email tsgambetti@aol.com to register
6:30pm

OCT 17
Young Artist Reception – a reception to celebrate the hard work of our young artists last 6 weeks of classes. Free- snacks provided
5:00pm

OCT 20
Kindermusik Cuddle & Bounce
There is a variety of Kindermusik classes available at the Speakeasy Art Center. Visit http://www.kindermusik.com/singoutstudios/ for more info
5:00pm

OCT 21
Kindermusik Move & Groove
There is a variety of Kindermusik classes available at the Speakeasy Art Center. Visit http://www.kindermusik.com/singoutstudios/ for more info
5:00pm

OCT 21
Kindermusik Laugh & Learn
There is a variety of Kindermusik classes available at the Speakeasy Art Center. Visit http://www.kindermusik.com/singoutstudios/ for more info
6:00pm

 OCT 22
Kindermusik Sing & Play
There is a variety of Kindermusik classes available at the Speakeasy Art Center. Visit http://www.kindermusik.com/singoutstudios/ for more info
10:00am

OCT 22
Kindermusik Cuddle & Bounce
There is a variety of Kindermusik classes available at the Speakeasy Art Center. Visit http://www.kindermusik.com/singoutstudios/ for more info
11:00am

OCT 22
Kindermusik Wiggle and Grow
There is a variety of Kindermusik classes available at the Speakeasy Art Center. Visit http://www.kindermusik.com/singoutstudios/ for more info
6:00pm

OCT 23
Kindermusik Laugh & Learn
There is a variety of Kindermusik classes available at the Speakeasy Art Center. Visit http://www.kindermusik.com/singoutstudios/ for more info
11:00am

OCT 23
Speakeasy Performance Poetry
Come experience the work of amazing local poets, network with community members, and as always BYOB or snacks.
Oh yeah, door prizes!
7:30pm

 OCT 24
A Weekend of Weaving at The Speakeasy
Fri Oct 24th-Weave-It Hand Looms 6:30PM-8:30PM/ $20
Sat Oct 25th-Free to Weave-Floor Looms 10A-12P/ $25
Sat Oct 25th-Weaving Patterns-Floor Looms 1P-4P/ $25
Sun Oct 26th- Ritzy Rags-Floor Looms 12:30P-4:30P / $50
Registration Details at
hopewellweaving.com
309-224-9258

 OCT 25
The Great Burr Oak Science Club-
The Great Burr Oak Science Club is an organization dedicated to increasing public interest in the sciences. Our monthly meetings feature a variety of scientific topics and our relaxed, open-forum setting makes science fun and accessible. The meetings are always free and open to all. Topic to be announced.
6:00pm

OCT 27
Kindermusik Cuddle & Bounce
There is a variety of Kindermusik classes available at the Speakeasy Art Center. Visit http://www.kindermusik.com/singoutstudios/ for more info
5:00pm

OCT 28
Young Artist Class
Every Tuesday for 6 weeks the kids will meet and create and then have a exhibit show to show off their work. Email speakeasyerica@yahoo.com for more info https://www.facebook.com/events/766932503370784/
4:30pm

Oct 28
Kindermusik Move & Groove
There is a variety of Kindermusik classes available at the Speakeasy Art Center. Visit http://www.kindermusik.com/singoutstudios/ for more info
5:00pm

OCT 28
Kindermusik Laugh & Learn
There is a variety of Kindermusik classes available at the Speakeasy Art Center. Visit http://www.kindermusik.com/singoutstudios/ for more info
6:00pm

OCT 29
Kindermusik Sing & Play
There is a variety of Kindermusik classes available at the Speakeasy Art Center. Visit http://www.kindermusik.com/singoutstudios/ for more info
10:00am

 OCT 29
Kindermusik Cuddle & Bounce
There is a variety of Kindermusik classes available at the Speakeasy Art Center. Visit http://www.kindermusik.com/singoutstudios/ for more info
11:00am

OCT 29
Kindermusik Wiggle and Grow
There is a variety of Kindermusik classes available at the Speakeasy Art Center. Visit http://www.kindermusik.com/singoutstudios/ for more info
6:00pm

OCT 30
Kindermusik Laugh & Learn
There is a variety of Kindermusik classes available at the Speakeasy Art Center. Visit http://www.kindermusik.com/singoutstudios/ for more info
11:00am

Thursday, September 25, 2014

Join Us For The World's Largest Earthquake Drill

The Illinois Emergency Management Agency (IEMA) is encouraging all Illinoisans to participate in the Great Central U.S. ShakeOut on October 16, 2014, at 10:16 a.m. The goal of this “Drop, Cover and Hold On” drill is to draw attention to the earthquake hazard that exists in Illinois, across the country and around the world.

The Great Central U.S. ShakeOut is held on the third Thursday of October each year as part of a large-scale ShakeOut involving millions of participants from more than 40 states and territories and several other countries. To date almost 21 million people have registered worldwide. Nearly 290,000 of those registrants are Illinoisans.

Some of the worst earthquakes in the U.S. occurred during the winter of 1811-1812 when earthquakes shook the Mississippi River Valley along the New Madrid Seismic Zone. The series of at least three magnitude 7 or greater earthquakes changed the landscape of the Central U.S. If earthquakes of similar magnitude happened today, their effects could have catastrophic impacts on national transportation, communication, utility and financial systems.

To participate in the ShakeOut log on to the ShakeOut website, http://www.shakeout.org/centralus/, where you can register for the drill and obtain details and reference materials. Please encourage others in your community to participate in ShakeOut, including schools, businesses, families, government agencies, medical facilities, colleges, universities and other organizations.
If an organization cannot participate on October 16, another day may be selected to conduct a “Drop, Cover and Hold On” drill. If another day is selected, the organization should still register on the ShakeOut website.

Additional earthquake preparedness and mitigation information is available on the following websites: http://www.ready.illinois.gov and http://www.cusec.org.
For more information, contact Kate Mackz at IEMA at 217/785-9925 or kate.mackz@illinois.gov.

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Illinois American Water Encourages Customers to Participate in National Prescription Drug Take Back Day

Drug Enforcement Agency’s National Prescription Drug Take Back Day is Sept. 27, 2014

Illinois American Water encourages customers to participate in the Drug Enforcement Agency’s (DEA) National Prescription Drug Take Back Day.  Residents are encouraged to drop off their unwanted medications at approved collection sites so they can be incinerated, which is the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) recommended approach for pharmaceutical disposal.  Both flushing medications down the toilet and throwing them in the trash are discouraged.

The event is Saturday, Sept. 27, from 10 AM to 2 PM.  Collection sites participating in this event can be located by visiting http://www.deadiversion.usdoj.gov/drug_disposal/takeback/index.html

“This event is a great opportunity for residents to securely drop off any unused or expired medications,” said Karla Olson Teasley, Illinois American Water president.  “It’s important for us to keep these items out of our landfills and water supplies as well as the hands of those who may misuse or abuse them.”  

Teasley added, “We encourage those who cannot participate during this DEA event to continue to use their community pharmaceutical disposal programs to properly dispose of their unwanted medications.  Through all of these efforts we can protect not only our water but our community as a whole.”  

Through partnership and collaboration with local pharmacies, environmental stewards, police departments and government officials, Illinois American Water has helped to implement 33 permanent pharmaceutical disposal programs across the state.  These programs are located in Alton, Bartonville, Belleville, Caseyville, Champaign (three sites), Chicago (two sites), Chillicothe, Collinsville, Columbia, Dixon, Fairmont, Freeburg, Maryville, Morrison, Mt. Carroll, Mt. Vernon, O’Fallon, Orland Hills, Pekin, Peoria (three sites), Peoria Heights, Pontiac, South Beloit, Sterling, Streator, Urbana (two sites) and Waterloo.  To find a permanent collection program in Illinois, please visit http://www.epa.state.il.us/medication-disposal/locations/index.html  

The pharmaceutical disposal programs were created through a model developed by Pontiac High School Township students and their teacher Paul Ritter.  The program, P2D2, has been recognized by the Illinois EPA and the Department of Natural Resources as a model for all pharmaceutical disposal programs. Through P2D2’s efforts, hundreds of thousands of pounds of unwanted medications have been collected and disposed of properly.  To learn more about P2D2 please visit www.p2d2program.org.

About Illinois American Water
Illinois American Water, a subsidiary of American Water (NYSE: AWK), is the largest investor-owned water utility in the state, providing high-quality and reliable water and/or wastewater services to approximately 1.2 million people. American Water also operates a customer service center in Alton and a quality control and research laboratory in Belleville.  Founded in 1886, American Water is the largest publicly traded U.S. water and wastewater utility company.  With headquarters in Voorhees, N.J., the company employs approximately 6,600 dedicated professionals who provide drinking water, wastewater and other related services to an estimated 14 million people in more than 40 states and parts of Canada. More information can be found by visiting www.amwater.com.