Monday, August 30, 2010

Tazewell County Genealogical and Historical Society Meeting

Dale Kuntz, local historian and long time member of our society, will speak to us about How Lt. Campbell Lost His Flagship - a maritime battle in Illinois during the War of 1812. Dale has given many presentations in recent years on various historical events and facts about our illustrious county.

The meeting, which is open to the general public, will be held on Tuesday September 14, 210 at the Society’s Erlicher Library, located at 719 N Eleventh St, Pekin, IL. The program will begin promptly at 7:00 PM, with a business meeting immediately following. The building is handicapped accessible with ample parking available.

Professional Therapy Services, Inc Announces Advanced Senior Clinician

Professional Therapy Services, Inc. is pleased to announce that Maureen Sylvester, PT, MS, CLT, is the first in the organization to attain the status of Advanced Senior Clinician. To gain this recognition several criteria must be met including advanced education and training, a minimum of seven years of clinical experience, demonstrated skill level, service as a mentor and preceptor for student clinicians, provider of community education and awareness, membership in professional organizations, and peer recognition of her individual accomplishments. Congratulations, Maureen!
Join us for a fun and exciting evening as the Chamber Ambassadors present the 6th annual Chamber Challenge Trivia Night.

Click here for the full details and flyer. 

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Save the Date - Business After Hours!

Biz Barometer

Pekin’s sales tax receipts in August were 2.8% higher than the August 2009 receipts according to information from the Illinois Department of Revenue. However, the running total of sales tax receipts for the 12-month period ending in August were 3.3% lower than the previous year.

The Peoria Area Association of Realtors reports that home sales in the Pekin area for the first seven months of 2010 are 8.5% greater than the same period in 2009. The 2010 average sales price in Pekin is 6.5% greater than the average price for the first seven months of 2009.

Membership Renewals through August 23

Thanks to the following businesses, organizations, and individuals who recently renewed their membership in the Pekin Area Chamber of Commerce:

Blue Ridge Construction ~ Busey Bank ~ George Carver ~ Cranwill's Drive In ~ Illinois Centers for Pain and Rehab ~ JPG Commercial Real Estate ~ Liberation Software ~ Little Ade's Bicycle ~ Methodist at Pekin ~ Midwest Eye Care ~ Viola Musgrave ~ Newman & Ullman ~ Pepsi Cola ~ SBSi Semonis Insurance Group ~ SJB Promotions ~ State Representative Mike Smith ~ The Grand Victorian of Pekin ~ United Workforce Development Board ~ Jimmy Williams ~ WMBD TV

LAUNCH - A Business Creation Competition

The 2010 Launch Business Creation Competition will include a preliminary round and culminate in a final round where the best business concept will be selected. All contestants who present their plans in the preliminary rounds will receive feedback and suggestions from the panel of judges. Those advancing to the final round will be eligible for the grand prize of a $5,000 cash award plus free consultancy services from a variety of professional areas of importance to start up businesses. Applications are due by September 7th. You can get more information and enter online at:

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

The Community Foundation of Central Illinois Awards $5.1 Million in Charitable Support during the 2009-2010 Fiscal Year.

Peoria, IL- The Community Foundation of Central Illinois (CFCI) is pleased to announce that it awarded over $5.1 million in grants and scholarships to support charitable causes during the 2009-2010 fiscal year.

Mark Roberts, CFCI’s CEO, stated “at a time when every charitable dollar is critically important, the Community Foundation of Central Illinois is pleased to be able to positively impact the quality of life in our community. Above all else, we are grateful to our generous fund holders and other donors who work with CFCI to accomplish their philanthropic goals.”

The $5.1 million figure includes over $1.5 million granted from CFCI’s unrestricted, field of interest, and donor-advised funds, as well as more than $3.5 million distributed from The Depository. The Depository, commonly described as a “charitable checking account”, enables donors to easily make charitable gifts by donating appreciated securities.

The mission of the Community Foundation of Central Illinois is to serve as a philanthropic resource committed to Connecting People Who Care with Causes That Matter. Individuals, families, businesses, and organizations create permanent charitable funds that help our community meet the challenges of changing times. The role of the foundation is to invest and administers these funds through community granting programs and individual or private giving.

The Community Foundation of Central Illinois is overseen by a volunteer board of leading citizens and operated by professionals with expertise in identifying community needs and grantmaking.

Monday, August 23, 2010

Bard Optical Gives Gift of Vision To People In Need

Bard Optical is taking the World Sight Day Challenge to help give sight to people in developing countries. On World Sight Day, Thursday, October 14, 2010 Bard Optical will make a donation to help provide eye exams and glasses to children in developing countries who can’t see well enough to learn at school, as well as adults who don’t see well enough to provide for their families.

Optometry Giving Sight, the organizer of the World Sight Day Challenge, funds programs that: 1) provide eye exams and glasses, 2) trains local eye care professionals, and 3) develops vision centers that provide long-term vision care to people in desperate need. There are 670 million people who are blind or vision impaired simply because they don’t have access to an eye examination and glasses.

“I am proud to support such a worthwhile cause,” said Diana Hall, President of Bard Optical . “It’s easy to take good vision for granted so taking the World Sight Day Challenge is a great way to raise funds to help people who don’t have access to even basic vision care.”

Ms. Hall was inspired to hear how 9-year-old Nlando’s life was changed by receiving her first pair of glasses, which help her to learn at school. Living in a township in South Africa, where the average family income is just $7 per day, education is the only real opportunity she has to escape the cycle of poverty into which she was born.

By the end of 2010, Optometry Giving Sight aims to have committed $4 million dollars to help provide eye exams and glasses to millions of people in need through sustainable programs. Raised funds are directed to projects in 18 countries in Latin America, Africa and Asia.

Just $5 can provide an eye examination and a pair of glasses for someone in a developing country. Bard Optical invites patients to make a donation at your local practice between September 1st and October 14th.

Optometry Giving Sight guarantees that 85% of all funds raised by optometrists and their patients go directly to programs that give sight to those most in need.

Bard Optical has 18 locations in Illinois. Log onto to find the location nearest you and schedule an appointment.

For more information about Optometry Giving Sight and the World Sight Day Challenge, visit or call 1-888-OGS-GIVE.

About Optometry Giving Sight

Optometry Giving Sight is a joint initiative of the World Optometry Foundation, the International Centre for Eyecare Education and the International Agency for the Prevention of Blindness. National industry sponsors include CIBA VISION, the Brien Holden Vision Institute, Marchon, Vision Source! And Optometry Giving Sight is a tax-exempt organization under section 501(c)3 of the Internal Revenue Code.

About World Sight Day

World Sight Day is an initiative of VISION 2020: The Right to Sight and is supported by the World Health Organization (WHO); the International Agency for the Prevention of Blindness and non- government organizations with the shared goal of eliminating avoidable blindness by the year 2020, in order to give all people in the world the right to sight. This year, World Sight Day will be held on Thursday October 14, and focuses on VISION 2020’s theme of the countdown to the year 2020.

About the World Sight Day Challenge

The World Sight Day Challenge is a major fundraising campaign coordinated by Optometry Giving Sight which is designed to raise funds for projects that provide vision care, local training and infrastructure support for people who are blind or vision impaired due to uncorrected refractive error – simply the need for an eye exam and a pair of glasses.

Optometrists are invited to participate by:
· Becoming a donor – donate monthly, make a single donation or donate one day of your eye exam fees
· Inviting patients to donate by using our new Giving Poster
· Celebrating World Sight Day in your practice on or around October 14th.

Tazewell County Jaycees Supports Dirksen Primary School

The Tazewell County Jaycees delivered 15 backpacks and a check for $225 to Dirksen Primary School Friday. These funds will be used to purchase school supplies for 15 students.

The Tazewell County Jaycees provides individuals between the ages of 18 – 40 the opportunity to develop personal and leadership skills while serving their community.

Tazewell County Jaycees President Kimberly Weeks and Vice President Dustin Weeks present $225 check to Dirksen Primary School principal Linda Seth.

Pekin Hospital Receives ACR Accreditation in Digital Mammography

Pekin Hospital’s Women’s Diagnostic Center has been awarded a three-year term of accreditation in Digital Mammography as the result of a recent survey by the American College of Radiology (ACR).

The ACR, headquartered in Reston, Virginia, awards accreditation to facilities for the achievement of high practice standards after a peer-review evaluation of the practice. Evaluations are conducted by board-certified physicians and medical physicists who are experts in the field. They assess the qualifications of the personnel and the adequacy of facility equipment. The surveyors report their findings to the ACR’s Committee on Accreditation, which subsequently provides the practice with a comprehensive report. 

The ACR is a national organization serving more than 32,000 diagnostic and interventional radiologists, radiation oncologists, and nuclear medicine and medical physicists with programs focusing on the practice of medical imaging and radiation oncology and the delivery of comprehensive health care services.

Pekin Hospital to Offer Cardiovascular Screenings

Pekin Hospital will offer free screenings to help you learn your risk of cardiovascular disease on September 2 from 7 – 10 a.m. at the Delavan United Methodist Church located at 417 S. Locust in Delavan, Illinois. Screenings offered at the event are: cholesterol, triglycerides, glucose, blood pressure, and body mass index. Information will also be shared on exercise, smoking cessation, and stress.

To register for the free screenings, please call Pekin Hospital’s Wellness Center at (309) 353-0334.

Cardiovascular disease (CVD) is responsible for nearly twice as many deaths in women as compared to all forms of cancer. You could be the one in three women who have some form of CVD. The good news is that HeartCaring can help you understand and reduce your risk of having a heart attack, stroke, or blood clot. HeartCaring hospitals all over the U.S. and in your community are conducting screenings for these and other cardiovascular risks.

Pekin Hospital’s participation is part of its ongoing involvement in the national HeartCaring® program, developed in partnership with the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI) The Heart Truth, is powered by Spirit Health Group® and activated by U.S. hospitals that ascribe to the highest standards of excellence in women’s health, education, and community outreach. HeartCaring is sponsored in part by The Bristol-Myers Squibb/Sanofi Pharmaceuticals Partnership and Philips Healthcare, with educational support from the Vascular Disease Foundation, the Peripheral Arterial Disease (P.A.D.) Coalition, and the Venous Disease Coalition.

For more information about cardiovascular disease, go to

Good Shepherd Lutheran School Ribbon Cutting

Representatives from the Pekin Area Chamber of Commerce congratulated Principal Ralph Mickley and the board of Good Shepherd Lutheran School with a ribbon cutting on the first day of school. Good Shepherd Lutheran School purchased the former Leath Furniture building and completed their remodeling this summer, just in time for the first day of classes. Ryan Fairchild, who was in the first preschool class of Good Shepherd Lutheran School in 1981 held at the former Roosevelt School, and his son Davin, who is in the first preschool class to enter the new facility, along with brother Gabe, a 1st grader, cut the ribbon as Good Shepherd opened their new doors to Christian education in the Pekin community.  You can see more pictures from this and other chamber events at:

Friday, August 20, 2010

Heart Walk needs your support!

The American Heart Association’s Start! Heart Walk needs your support!

On Saturday, October 9, 2010, the American Heart Association will hold its annual Start! Heart Walk for the area. This year's walk will be held at the Laura Bradley Park in Peoria. The Start! Heart Walk is a healthy, fun, family and community event. It promotes exercise as part of a heart-healthy lifestyle and raises funds for research and programs to fight cardiovascular disease. It is estimated that 80 million Americans (1 in 3 people) are affected by cardiovascular disease. It is our nation’s #1 killer and cardiovascular disease is the cause of 31% of the deaths in McLean County. It is the mission of the American Heart Association to build healthier lives free of cardiovascular disease and stroke and the Start! Heart Walk is our first step in doing that.

You probably know someone suffering from heart disease, stroke or other cardiovascular disease. Most of us do. To help these people — and to help protect our loved ones — we all need to get involved.

We would like to put together as many teams as possible from different business to come together as a larger Team Pekin! This is a very worthy cause with a goal of raising $20,000 from Pekin. We count on the support of the entire community to help us reach this goal.

I hope you will strongly consider supporting this event. Cardiovascular diseases and stroke threaten all Americans, but we can help our families, friends, neighbors and others in our community by giving generously to reduce disability and save lives.

If you would like to put together a team or need more information please feel free to contact Lea Taylor, our local representative from the American Heart Association at 309-648-8697 or

Click here to view a copy of the American Heart Association letter.

Most Employers Required To Migrate To EFTPS By 12/31/10

WASHINGTON — Consistent with a Financial Management Service initiative announced in April of this year, the IRS today issued proposed regulations to significantly increase the number of electronic transactions between taxpayers and the federal government.

The proposed regulations (REG 153340-09) would eliminate the rules for making federal tax deposits by paper coupon because the paper coupon system will no longer be maintained by the Treasury Department after Dec. 31, 2010. The proposed regulations generally maintain existing rules for depositing federal taxes through the Electronic Federal Tax Payment System (EFTPS).

Using EFTPS to make federal tax deposits provides substantial benefits to both taxpayers and the government. EFTPS users can make tax payments 24 hours a day, seven days a week from home or the office.

Deposits can be made online with a computer or by telephone. EFTPS also significantly reduces payment-related errors that could result in a penalty. The system helps taxpayers schedule dates to make payments even when they are out of town or on vacation when a payment is due. EFTPS business users can schedule payments up to 120 days in advance of the desired payment date.

Information on EFTPS, including how to enroll, can be found at or by calling EFTPS Customer Service at 1-800-555-4477.

Some businesses paying a minimal amount of tax may make their payments with the related tax return, instead of using EFTPS. More details regarding taxes required to be deposited using EFTPS, dollar thresholds and other specific requirements are in the proposed regulations.

Family Health Center of Pekin Ribbon Cutting

Representatives of the Pekin Area Chamber of Commerce recently held a ribbon cutting to celebrate the newly remodeled Family Health Center of Pekin at 19 Olt Avenue. Renovations to the Family Health Center began in early 2009 to offer expanded space for physician practice exam rooms, a surgical suite for in-office procedures, improved patient privacy areas, and community health education programs. Physicians practicing at the center include Sarosh Ahmed, M.D., John Lindell, M.D., Kiran Multani, D.O., and Sunny Multani, M.D., as well as Nurse Practitioner Ginger Denney. For more information about the Family Health Center of Pekin or to schedule an appointment, call 353-6301.  You can see more pictures of this and other chamber events at:

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Chamber Hosted Healthcare Reform Luncheon

Just over 50 business and community leaders attended an August 19th luncheon sponsored by the Pekin Area Chamber of Commerce. Held at the Avanti's Dome, and coordinated by the chamber's Business Advocacy and Member Services Committees, the program focused on the changes employers will deal with in the coming years due to the recent healthcare reform legislation passed by Congress. Three "local experts" presented the program: Kevin Andrews, CEO, Pekin Hospital; Peggy Collins, VP, Group & Claims Service, Pekin Insurance; and, Aindrea Balagna, CPA, Partner, Wolf Tesar & Company.  You can see more pictures from this and other chamber events at:

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

TCRC Announces Retirement and New President

Ron Hale, TCRC President and CEO for the past fourteen years, announced his retirement to the agency’s Board of Directors at their July 19th meeting. His last day directing the agency will be April 30, 2011. Under Mr. Hale’s leadership, Tazewell County Resource Centers, Inc. has evolved into one of the finest providers of social services to people with developmental disabilities and visual impairments in the state. Dan Walters, Chairman of the TCRC Board of Directors, is pleased that Mr. Hale has provided the Board with nine months to make a transition to a new leader. “We appreciate that Ron has provided us so much time to select a successor and put in place a transition plan. It’s typical of the planning and leadership he’s provided for fourteen years.”

Also announced …The Board of Directors voted at its August 16th meeting to promote Mr. Jamie Durdel from TCRC’s Senior Vice-President of Program Services to the position of President and CEO, succeeding Mr. Hale. Mr. Durdel holds a Master’s Degree in Human Service Administration from the University of Illinois and has been employed by TCRC since 2005. “Jamie has been well prepared to assume the responsibilities of President and CEO and his hiring will allow us to maintain consistency in what the Board believes to be an outstanding agency,” states Chairman Walters.

Tazewell County Resource Centers, Inc. is a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit social service agency serving children and adults with developmental disabilities and visual impairments in central Illinois.

For more information, please contact Dan Walters, Chairman of the TCRC Board of Directors, at (309) 360-2765.

Monday, August 16, 2010

Ameren Illinois hosts webinars

Ameren Illinois is hosting a series of webinars to present content from the You Can Act On Energy Symposiums break-out sessions. This is the same information that was presented at the You Can Act On Energy Symposiums, however not everyone could attend that event.

These sessions highlight industry best practices along with what equipment businesses should target to get the greatest return on their investment. In addition, we’ll also cover:
· Cost of waiting
· How to get started with energy-efficiency
· Incentives available from Act On Energy
· How the Act On Energy Program can help

Webinars will begin at 8:00 AM and will last for one hour. We’ll discuss important topics such as T12s and motors which are facing drastic changes due to Federal changes in standards. There will be a total of 4 webinars offered covering different business sectors.
· Grocery/Convenience Store August 31st
· Healthcare September 2nd
· Small Business/Non-profit September 7th
· Industrial September 9th

Each customer MUST register ahead of time to attend and they can attend as many sessions as they would like. To register, customers just need to click on the hyperlink in the name of the session they would like to attend and provide their name, company and email address.

Volunteers Needed - Federal Correctional Institution Mock Job Fair

Volunteers are needed to help perform practice employment interviews to federal inmates. While experience in interviewing is helpful, it is not required. Upon arrival at the institution, we will help prepare you for the day. In the past, most employers have found this to be a very rewarding experience. They appreciate any support you can give in helping to prepare the inmates for future release into the community. To confirm your attendance, please download the form and fax it to the number provided on the form.

Friday, August 13, 2010

August Puttin' On Pekin

Over 80 chamber members and their guests attended the August 13th Puttin' on Pekin breakfast held at the Knights of Columbus Hall. Carol Shields won the early prize, while Ruby Cunefare won the late prize. The Spotlight on Business was presented to Suzi Davis Travel and accepted by Rita Rittenhouse and Teresa Sayles. The Blue Ribbon award was given to Jim Kouri from Kouri's Pub, and the Sunshine Award was presented to Debbie Davison for the Dreams for Seniors organization. Dianne Gresham presented a program on the improvements made at The Club at Sunset Hills.

YWCA Raising Funds for Paint the Town Red

Join YWCA supporters at Culver’s in Pekin on August 18th from 5:00 to 8:00 p.m. to raise funds for this year’s Paint the Town Red campaign. Culver’s will donate 10 percent of all sales to the YWCA, so grab your friends and family, enjoy a dinner out, and help the YWCA of Pekin! Information on the YWCA’s Run the Town Red 5K Race/Walk and Bobber raffle on August 28th will be available at the event. The YWCA of Pekin is holding its Eighth Annual Paint the Town Red campaign to raise funds for its programs and services offered throughout Tazewell County. For more information, visit or call 347-9922.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Illinois Small Business Job Creation Tax Credit

Small businesses that create new jobs between now and June 30, 2011, may be able to take advantage of a $2,500 tax credit for new hires through the Illinois Small Business Job Creation Tax Credit. The new tax credit, proposed and signed into law by Governor Pat Quinn earlier this year, targets the foundation of Illinois' economy – the 500,000 small businesses across the state.

The $2,500 credit is available to businesses with 50 or fewer employees (including all locations) as of June 30, 2010. Ninety-five percent of Illinois businesses have fewer than 50 employees. New small businesses hiring their first Illinois employee(s) may also qualify for the credit.

The Illinois Department of Commerce & Economic Opportunity created a simple, easy-to-use online registration system for busy, small business owners at Eligible companies should register new positions online as soon as a new, full-time Illinois employee is hired and begins providing services. After one year, the companies will then return to the web site to enter substantiating data and apply for their tax credit certificate. Tax credit certificates will be awarded beginning July 1, 2011. The total amount of credits issued is capped at $50 million, which will support 20,000 jobs.

IRS News For Business: September 2010

IR 10-84 IRS has a dedicated phone line for Gulf Oil Spill Victims; Publication 4873 is on The Gulf Oil Spill and Your Taxes flyer and the Publication 4873-A is a Gulf Oil Spill Questions and Answers handout.

● The Affordable Care Act contains some tax provisions that may affect a business. Find timely tips, fact sheets, news releases and legal guidance on

IR 10-83 The National Taxpayer Advocate mid-year report to Congress expresses concern about the new information reporting burdens facing small businesses and certain IRS collection practices.

● Small Business Virtual Workshop

● Your Guide to an IRS Audit

● The Small Business Resources section offers links to a broad range of information from federal and state agencies.

Summertime Tax Tip 10-05 offers six tips for new business owners.

● Checklists provide the basic steps to follow when:

· Starting a business

· Closing a Business

● Small Business Devel,,id=172970,00.htmlopment Centers offer one-stop assistance to individuals and small businesses by providing a wide variety of information and guidance in branch locations.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

CFCI accepting grant proposals from non-profit organizations

The Community Foundation of Central Illinois (CFCI) is currently accepting grant proposals from non-profit organizations within a 50-mile radius of Peoria.

Newly revised grant guidelines may be downloaded from the CFCI website at and are available at the office, 331 Fulton Street, Suite 310, Peoria, Illinois 61602.

Proposals must be received at the Community Foundation of Central Illinois office by: 4:30 PM, Wednesday, September 15, 2010. Proposals received after this date will not be accepted.

The Community Foundation’s purpose is to assist projects in the fields of education, arts, health, human services, community service or community development and advance

ONE OR MORE of the following objectives:
1. Address and help resolve important existing or emerging community issues.
2. Support new and creative projects and organizations offering the greatest opportunity for positive and significant change.
3. Promote cooperation and collaboration among organizations.
4. Identify, enhance, and develop leadership in the community through creative and innovative activities which empower individuals.
5. Improve the quality or scope of charitable work in the community.

The Community Foundation of Central Illinois does not provide grant funding for annual campaigns, individuals, endowments, or for sectarian religious purposes.

For questions regarding the Community Foundation of Central Illinois’ Fall 2010 Grant Cycle please call (309) 674-8730.

16th Annual City of Pekin Community Update, Golf Outing, Dinner

City of Pekin

August 10, 2010



Since 1994, the City of Pekin has conducted an annual Community Update meeting. A golf outing and dinner completed the day’s events. All previous events have been very well attended and the feedback has been valuable.

We are planning our 16th annual event for Thursday, September 16, 2010. A Community Update will be held starting at 8:00 A.M. at Pekin Insurance Lodge, 2505 Court Street, Pekin. Current and proposed citywide improvements will be discussed. The City coordinates its activities with the other intergovernmental bodies and agencies. The first half of the meeting will consist of what is going on and what will be going on in the City of Pekin. The second half of the meeting is intended to discuss new slogans promoting Pekin.

In an effort to continue the interaction among those participating, we are scheduling a golf outing with a rolling shotgun starting at 12:00 P.M. at Pekin’s Lick Creek Golf Course. This year’s event is being planned as a four (4) person scramble. If you are interested in providing a door prize for the golf outing, please contact Vicki at Dennis Kief’s office at (309) 478-5362. Concluding the day’s activities, we will be offering a dinner from 5:30 P.M. to 7:00 P.M. back at Pekin Insurance Lodge.

We realize that everyone’s time is valuable and schedules are tight. We hope that you can attend at least a part of the day’s activities. This is a rare opportunity to connect face-to-face and be able to discuss and collaborate on the issues that affect our Community. Please send the attached reply sheet with payment by September 9, 2010. Pre-payment is required for the golf and dinner. We look forward to your participation at this year’s event.
Rusty Dunn, Mayor                             Dennis Kief, City Manager

Click here a copy of the letter and the registration form.

Growing Jobs Across America

Mon, 08/16/2010 - 3:00pm
Growing Jobs Across America: Opportunities in Illinois Featuring Ambassador Han Duk-soo, Korean Ambassador to the United States and Congressman Aaron Schock (IL-18).

The Peoria Area Chamber of Commerce, along with the US Chamber is hosting an event for the The Honorable Korean Ambassador Han Duk-soo and Congressman Schock on August 16th from 3:00 to 5:30 p.m. at the Hotel Pere Marquette in Peoria. The Ambassador is doing a Midwestern tour promoting the Korean Free Trade Agreement. The event will feature presentations by both the Ambassador Han Duk-soo and Congressman Schock as well as other community representatives.

Cost to attend: $25 for members and $35 for non-members.

Contact:  Heather Inselmann at:  with questions.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Verizon Wireless Smartphone Workshop

Attend a free Wireless Workshop for a personal, hands-on demonstration and instructions on a variety of topics.  You'll get tips and tricks on using your Droid, Blackberry, Palm or Windows phone. People with multimedia and basic phones are also welcome.  This free one-hour workshop will be held on Saturday, August 21 at 7:30 a.m. at Verizon Wireless, 3578 Court Street in East Court Village.  To register for the workshop go to

Val Springborn, 2010 Marigold Festival Chairperson

Val Springborn has always lived in Pekin and has great memories of the Marigold Festival. Every year, her parents brought her to the festival, where they spent most of the weekend enjoying all of the family oriented events. She now brings her husband, Greg, and daughter, Norah, to take pleasure in the same festival she is so fond of.

Read more of the article published by Pekin Daily Times at the following link:
Love of the Marigold Festival spurs woman to volunteer - Pekin, IL - Pekin Daily Times

Marigold Festival Updates

2010 Pekin's Next Top Dog, Preliminaries were held Tuesday August 3rd, at the Pekin Park Arena.

2010 Little Miss & Mr Marigold Pageant was held Sunday, August 1st, at the Avanti’s Dome in Pekin.

Lip Sync Applications are now available.
Friday Night Family Fest
Lip Sync Contest, A Pekin Main Street Event
Friday, September 10th, 2010
7:00 pm - Downtown Pekin (Intersection of Capitol & Elizabeth)
The application is available on the Pekin Area Chamber Website.
For more information, call Pekin Main Street at 353-3100.

For more details, visit the Pekin Marigold Festival Blog

Chamber Welcomes New Member, Apollo Cleaning Center

Apollo Cleaning Center, 312 Derby St, Pekin IL 61554; phone: 309-472-5309; Gil Johnson, Owner; Cindy Meyer, Manager.  Business Hours: 4am - Midnight. They offer a full service Laundromat and dry cleaning services.

Chamber Welcomes New Member, Giant Scoop & Coffee Company

Giant Scoop & Coffee Company, 312 Derby St, Pekin IL 61554; phone: 309-472-5309; Gil Johnson, Owner; Cindy Meyer, Manager. Business hours: 6am - 9pm.  Treat your sweet tooth to ice cream while you visit the adjoining laundromat. They also serve sandwiches, salads and coffee.

Monday, August 9, 2010

Chamber Welcomes New Member, Country Financial - Kim Springer

Country Financial-Kim Springer, 1505 Valle Vista, Pekin IL 61554; phone: 309-346-4168; fax: 309-346-1772; Kim Springer, Financial Representative; e-mail:; Office Hours: 8am - 5pm M-F. Kim Springer is a financial representative for Country Financial in Pekin. Kim works with clients to help provide proper insurance for their auto and home. She also provides proper guidance for individuals to create their financial security plan. This includes: Life Insurance, Roth IRA's, Long Term Care, Group and Individual Health to name a few. 

Friday, August 6, 2010

Hallmark House Nursing Center Business After Hours

The Hallmark House Nursing Center was the host of the August 5th Business After Hours. Chamber members and their guests enjoyed great food and refreshments from their catering department, went on tours of the facility, and took advantage of the networking opportunities. Lynn Brady and her staff also updated the group on some recent developments at their facility before drawing for door prizes.

State Rep. Smith Schedules Small Business Roundtable

Pekin Chamber Members:

As your State Representative, I would like to thank you for the services you provide to the community as a small business owner. It is important to me that your business thrive and flourish even in the difficult economic downturn.

In the past few months, I have worked to help spur job growth by supporting the creation of a tax credit for businesses that hire new workers and by backing the first statewide jobs bill in a decade. I firmly believe that small businesses form the backbone of our economy, and there is no doubt that the vitality of such businesses is key to our economic recovery.

Your insight as a small business owner is vital in helping me understand the needs of the district’s entrepreneurs. I would like to take this opportunity to invite you to a meeting with me and other business owners in the area to discuss the important issues facing our communities and the State of Illinois.

To make sure I can effectively fight for you, I am hosting a small business roundtable on Tuesday, August 17 at 2:00 p.m. in the Pekin Public Library’s Community Room, located at 301 S. 4th St in Pekin.

I look forward to seeing on August 17. To RSVP for the roundtable, or if I can be of any assistance to you, please contact my office at 620-8587.


Michael K. Smith
State Representative

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Business After Hours

Business After Hours
August 5th
4:30 - 6:00pm
Hallmark House Nursing Center
Allentown Rd - Pekin

Plan to join us!  Network with your fellow chamber members and community leaders. 
Call the chamber @ 346-2106

Savant Recognized as One of the Top Five RIA Firms in the Midwest; Receives Additional Designations from Prestigious Publications

Financial publications release rankings of RIA Firms Peoria, IL

Savant Capital Management, a nationally recognized fee-only wealth management firm headquartered in Rockford with an office in Peoria, has been recognized by InvestmentNews as the fifth largest Registered Investment Advisor (RIA) firm in the Midwest, ranked by discretionary assets under management. Savant was also named a top RIA firm by Financial Advisor magazine and Accounting Today magazine.

InvestmentNews recently released the results of its rankings of RIA Giants, naming Savant as #5 in the Midwest and #32 out of 50 nationally. All firms named on the Giants list manage more than $1 billion in assets. To be named to the list, a firm must not receive commissions or conduct business as a broker-dealer, and provides wealth management services to clients. This is the third year Savant has been named to the RIA Giants list.

Financial Advisor magazine also recently released their rankings of RIA firms, and Savant was designated as number 38 out of 456 firms nationally. The magazine ranked the firms by assets under management. According to Financial Advisor magazine, total assets increased by 23% in 2009 for RIA firms in general. As published in the rankings results, at the end of 2009 Savant managed nearly $1.6 billion in assets, saw a 32.66 percent growth in assets and only 1.68 percent change in number of clients.

CPA Wealth Provider, a special supplement to Accounting Today magazine, ranked Savant as #8 out of 15 RIA firms that manage over $1 billion in assets in their Wealth Magnets list. The magazine ranks firms by several categories: The Billion Dollar Club, the $100 + Million Club, the $50 Million + Club and the Rising Stars, rating a total of 181 firms.

“Savant continues to put its clients first in all situations,” said Managing Partner Brent Brodeski. “We have been fortunate to work with a number of clients in the region and to grow as a firm. We attribute our success to our philosophy of providing world class wealth management planning on a fee-only basis, meaning we do not receive commissions or sell products.”

About Savant Capital Management, Inc.
Savant Capital Management, Inc. offers investment management, financial planning, and family office services to financially established individuals, trust funds, retirement plans and non-profit organizations.

Savant is regularly recognized among the top wealth managers in the United States. Savant was named the top independent advisor in Illinois by Chicago Magazine. Savant was named by Barron’s magazine as one of the 100 best independent financial advisors in the United States for the last three consecutive years, and Inc. magazine named the firm as the fastest growing Registered Investment Advisor in Illinois. For the past seven years, Savant earned a place on Bloomberg Wealth Manager’s Top Wealth Managers list. Savant also was recognized as one of the nation’s top 100 financial advisors by Worth magazine from 1997 through 2008; the survey was discontinued in 2009. In 2006, Savant was included in The Wealth Factor— A Team Approach, a book profiling ten of the most innovative and respected wealth management firms in the nation. For more information on Savant Capital Management, log-on to

Savant Capital Management, Inc. is a Registered Investment Advisor. This announcement is only intended for interested investors residing in states in which the Advisor is qualified to provide investment advisory services. Please contact the Advisor to find out if they are qualified to provide investment advisory services in the state where you reside. Savant’s marketing material should not be construed by any existing or prospective client as a guarantee that they will experience a certain level of results if they engage the adviser’s services and includes lists or rankings published by magazines and other sources which are generally based exclusively on information prepared and submitted by the recognized adviser. The Adviser does not attempt to furnish personalized investment advice or services through this publication. Past performance is no guarantee of future results.

Pekin Marigold Festival: Boys & Girls Club Wiffle Ball Tournament

Pekin Marigold Festival: Boys & Girls Club Wiffle Ball Tournament: "Last year's inaugural tournament was a real success and the Boys and Girls Club of Pekin Wiffle Ball Classic is back! This year's tourney back!

This year's tourney will again guarantee $500 to the first place team with additional payouts to the top teams. The tourney will be held on Sunday, September 12th at Mineral Springs Park, Diamond #1. The first round begins at 9:00am so arrive early.

Team applications are available now. Download your copy today from the Pekin Area Chamber of Commerce website or pick one up at the Pekin Area Chamber of Commerce office, the Boys and Girls Club or the Pekin Park District. Sign up now because the field is limited to the first 16 teams. Entry Deadline is September 3, 2010.

Wiffle Ball Homerun Derby will be held as well. This is open to the public as well as the tournament players. For $2.00 you get 10 outs. Try as many times as you want and compete for cash and a trophy.

For additional information call the Boys & Girls Club 309-346-5437
or the Pekin Area Chamber of Commerce 309-346-2106

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Ladies Night Out! Grumpy Pete's Steak House

Thursday -  August  26th,  5:30-7:30pm
Grumpy Pete’s Steakhouse1440 N. 8th St.     ( hwy  29)
Ladies Night ! Everyone needs a night out?
Come join us for fun, fashion, and a fabulous time
  • Tupperware- storage & serving
  • Stylist Nicole from The Happening.
  • Tips and Toes To Go- manicures, pedicures, more 
  • Lia Sophia - Affordable jewelry
  • Scentsy Wickless Candles
  • Stress Busters- Massage & Reflexology
  • Pampered Chef
  • Tastefully Simple Taste some new & wonderful wines
We always have drawings & giveaways                        
Grumpy Pete’s  477-8325  OR  202-2302

Covenant Heating & Air Ribbon Cutting

Representatives from the Pekin Area Chamber of Commerce recently congratulated Covenant Heating & Air on their relocation to a new building. This growing local business recently completed their renovations and move to 412 Broadway. Owners Frank and Pam Shearer were joined by their employees for the ribbon cutting.

Monday, August 2, 2010

Get Motivated Seminar Coming to Peoria Civic Center Arena August 31

The Get Motivated Seminar featuring legendary motivator Zig Ziglar, America’s Mayor Rudy Giuliani, world famous soldier-statesman General Colin Powell and former First Lady Laura Bush is coming to the Peoria Civic Center Arena. The day-long presentation will take place on Tuesday, August 31, 2010 from 8 a.m. to 4:45 p.m.

Additional speakers will include the greatest quarterback in NFL history Terry Bradshaw, legendary president of Microsoft Rick Belluzzo, America’s top Authority on Selling Brian Tracy, America’s most inspirational speaker Dr. Robert Schuller and other renowned teachers and motivators.

Among the speakers' topics will be "How to Stay Motivated" (Ziglar); “Take Charge Leadership” (Powell); “The Tenacity to Persevere: How to Make it Through Any Crisis” (Giuliani); “How to Survive and Thrive in Times of Transition” (Bush); “How to Lead Your Team to Victory” (Bradshaw); “How to Manage, Lead and Succeed” (Belluzzo); “How to Strengthen Your Sales and Negotiation Skills” (Tracy) and “Tough Times Never Last but Tough People Do” (Schuller);

An entire office of people can attend this seminar of a day of training, inspiration and motivation for a total investment of only $4.95 per person and $19 for an entire office. To take advantage of this very limited-time offer, call 1-800-217-1339. Admission at the door if attending singly will be $225.

Tazewell County Genealogical and Historical Society will present their eighth annual Harvest Time for Genealogists

The Tazewell County Genealogical and Historical Society will present their eighth annual Harvest Time for Genealogists on Saturday October 9, 2010, from 9 am to 3 pm. at the society’s Erlicher Library, 719 N Eleventh St, Pekin IL. Registration begins at 8:00 am.

Speaker at this year’s event will be Jeffrey Bockman. Mr. Bockman is a Genealogy Lecturer & Writer. He was a contributing editor for the former Everton's Genealogical Helper and a feature writer for the former Heritage Quest Magazine. His articles have also appeared in various other publications. He is the author of Give Your Family A Gift That Money Can't Buy, a book that encourages people to record and preserve their family's history. His topics for the day will include a look at passenger lists, immigration records, emigration records, printed indexes and other sources to find the ships that carried your ancestors; he will explore a wide variety of primary and secondary sources to determine when a person was born and who were their parents if a birth certificate is not available or can't be found; what’s hiding in the 1900 -1930 census records; and he will give us an overview of both physical and online maps including Historical Atlases.

Registration is $30 per person, which includes all lectures, lecture handouts, refreshments, and lunch. Walk in registrations will be accepted, but cannot be guaranteed an immediate copy of the course handouts if demand exceeds supply. Register online at, stop in at our library at 719 N Eleventh Street and register in person. Contact the library at (309) 477-3044 for more information.

Ray Dennison Chevrolet Congratulates Drew Shepherdson on Top Sales Performance

Ray Dennison Chevrolet announced that Drew Shepherdson, Internet Sales Manager, recently qualified for the Chevy Bow Tie Club as a result of his sales leadership. A very elite inaugural group, the Bow Tie Club includes some of the nation’s top New Vehicle Salespeople. Shepherdson was recognized for his top sales performance during a ceremony on Friday, July 23, 2010 at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

“We congratulate Drew on this great award,” Brian Dennison, Owner and Manager, said. “He is extremely knowledgeable about Chevrolet products and is very conscientious about ensuring each customer has the best possible experience. As a result, the majority of Drew’s business comes from repeat and referral customers.”

Ranked among the top 10% of the nation’s Chevrolet dealers, Ray Dennison Chevrolet has been serving Central Illinois for over 36 years. The dealer is proud to offer today’s Chevrolet vehicles, which are recognized for their safety, performance and technology.

Illinois Chamber Ranks Legislators

Let’s Applaud Champions of Free Enterprise in Illinois
President’s Message - July 30, 2010
By Doug Whitley
President & CEO of the Illinois Chamber of Commerce

The Illinois Chamber is recognizing 37 Illinois legislators – 12 senators and 25 representatives – who have courageously and consistently supported legislative issues that are critical to business and job creation in Illinois – despite a hostile environment in Springfield. The Chamber has named these legislators winners of the Illinois Chamber Champion of Free Enterprise Award for their exceptional records in defending free enterprise and furthering economic opportunity.

We thank those legislators who have consistently voted in line with a pro-business, pro-growth, pro-jobs agenda. Our Free Enterprise Awards go to legislators with the best voting records, according to the Illinois Chamber’s annual Legislative Ratings report, released earlier this month.

Ideally, every member of the Illinois General Assembly would realize that beyond question the number one public policy issue in Illinois is job growth. Before every vote, our legislators should be asking themselves whether the proposal they’re voting on will hurt or promote employment in Illinois. Sadly, as the scorecard demonstrates, promoting job growth and economic prosperity is not always foremost on all legislators’ minds when they cast their votes.

What Employers Are Up Against
Those legislators who understand that private enterprise is the engine to lead Illinois back to prosperity deserve our praise, contributions to their campaign coffers and voter support. Thankfully, there are legislators who serve as voices of reason and a critical counterbalance to political leaders who have ignored the costs of doing business while steering Illinois into an economic ditch during the past decade. State leaders – particularly Democrats in powerful positions – have been in charge during what I call the “lost decade” for Illinois’ economy.

I am sure you will share my disappointment that so many legislators – particularly Democrats – have chosen to vote against the interests of the employers who create jobs and bring prosperity to our state. The distinguishing factors tend to be votes on measures that increase employer costs, impose mandates, or favor the narrow interests of organized labor. It is shocking when legislators seem oblivious to any relationship such actions may have toward the outward migration of jobs, double digit unemployment throughout the state and constituents who have moved to other states taking their talents, investments and entrepreneurial skills with them..

What the Ratings Mean
The Chamber has developed its Legislative Ratings report for more than 25 years and, given the current state of our economy, the rankings have never been more important to employers and their employees. The ratings provide one tool to inform voters on whether their state legislators are working to attract and retain jobs in our state.

I invite you to look at the Chamber’s full Legislative Ratings report at:  The ratings are based on legislators’ votes on key business legislation, as determined by Chamber staff and the Chamber’s Government Affairs Committee. Legislators who earned a rating of 85 percent or better during the previous three two-year General Assembly sessions were honored with the Chamber’s 2009-2010 Champion of Free Enterprise Awards. The Chamber believes this six-year look at legislators’ records is much better than a one- or two-year snapshot. It shows which lawmakers consistently support measures that are important for employers and our economic well-being.

Some of the votes included in the Chamber’s current review include telecommunications reform, state pension reform, capital plan financing, prevailing wage and “card check” legislation, procurement reform and tax votes.

The Chamber also recognizes two first-term legislators – Sen. Kyle McCarter of Lebanon and Rep. Darlene Senger of Naperville – who have demonstrated special leadership in the promotion of free enterprise. Since it is impossible for a “rookie” legislator to earn a Champion of Free Enterprise Award, the Chamber chooses to identify an outstanding new member of the Senate and of the House of Representatives to praise them for their voting records and support for pro-job legislative initiatives.

How You Can Use the Ratings
The November 2 election will be here before you know it, and the campaigns for General Assembly are in full swing. The Illinois Chamber Legislative Ratings are an indispensable tool for anyone who cares deeply about Illinois’ business climate and the economic future of this state. I urge you to use the rankings to help evaluate whether to support a legislator’s campaign or, at the very least, determine which candidate gets your vote. I also urge you to share this information with others by forwarding this email or the link to the legislative scorecard.   

The trial of our former governor reminds me of the outlandish rhetoric and anti-business policies pursued by that administration, which resulted in a steady exodus of jobs to other states and countries. Unfortunately, those actions and a powerful recession have resulted in unacceptable levels of unemployment in Illinois and are putting Illinois at a serious competitive disadvantage.

We need to reverse this trend – as soon as possible. Part of the solution is to elect – this November – legislators who believe in pro-jobs initiatives for Illinois: less taxation, less litigation, less regulation, speedier permitting, workers’ compensation reform, a balanced budget, and paying vendors in a timely manner. In addition, our state leaders must be attentive to multi-state competitiveness measures, nurture hometown industries and provide a stable political climate.

Our objective is to get more legislators to walk in the shoes of the entrepreneurs and job creators in Illinois. They need to know what it takes to create a favorable environment for business owners that aids in the creation of job growth and prosperity. You can help by letting your state legislators and candidates know what is important to you. Call them, write to them and talk with them. Send me an e-mail if you have ideas or would like to share your company’s “cost of doing business” story with legislators.

This election cannot be about sitting on the sidelines if you are concerned about our state’s economic future. Find the candidates that reflect your concerns about changing the direction of Illinois and get involved. If you need ideas and suggestions, do not hesitate to contact me or one of the Chamber staff. We can help you get plugged into activities that can make a difference this November. You can support the Chamber PAC by sending a check to: Chamber PAC, 215 East Adams, Springfield, Illinois, 62701.

It’s Not About Partisan Politics
It is disappointing that not one Democrat supported employers’ interests enough to earn the Champion of Free Enterprise Award this term. I do not believe Democratic state legislators really want to be known as the anti-jobs and anti-prosperity lawmakers. But more of them are going to have to change their voting patterns if Illinois is going to reverse its sad and low standing in numerous national surveys.

Time and again, measures that would help our struggling economy and bring jobs to Illinois become entangled in party politics. Rather than play what too often turns into a partisan and populist game of business-bashing, legislators should look for ways to create an environment that fosters job creation and job growth. Creating jobs is a non-partisan activity that requires a bi-partisan effort. Regardless of party or office, no elected official in this state can ignore that fundamental objective.

What is the best solution for unemployment? Job creation.
The best way to reverse the state’s declining tax receipts? Job creation.
The best answer for reducing reliance upon government services? Job creation.
The best solution for community needs? Job creation.

The Bottom Line: We’re All Watching
State legislators need to recognize that every governmental entity and nonprofit organization in Illinois depends on the success, health and prosperity of the private sector. The laws the Legislature passes, the regulations they pursue, the costly litigation they allow, the rhetoric they espouse has got to change.

Legislators need to know that someone is watching. We, as their constituents, must hold them accountable. The Illinois Chamber voting record is an important tool to help you measure the performance of elected officials. Use it.

Pekin Chamber's Legislative Scorecard
The Pekin Area Chamber of Commerce has summarized the Illinois Chamber's scorecard for legislators in our area.  You can find that summary at: