Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Hopedale Wellness Center Open House

Upcoming Speakeasy Events

This guy is home from college for the hoildays and is going to be playing this Saturday January 3rd at The Speakeasy. Come downtown and join u sgor a evening if Jazz!
 Bring your own snacks and beverages and join at 7:00 PM

$5 cover at the door

2014 is winding down and we want to thank you all for your continued support to art in our community. We will not have our regular gallery hours from Dec 20th until January 6th. You can however reach me at info@speakeasyartcenter.com
 to address questions or schedule a time to visit the gallery.  
During this time we are working on our exciting 2015 calendar.
 We have several new things to announce and lots more classes to offer.We are looking forward to a fun new year cultivating the arts in Pekin!
 All scheduled classes and events are still occurring during this time.
 Wishing you a great holiday season with your family and friends! ~Shannon

We have studio spaces available. 
Contact us at info@speakeasyartcenter.com for info

Contact us to join our photography studio rental club!
We have a set studio all ready for you to use with lights and props! 
email info@speakeasyartcenter.com for info 

Plan your events at The Speakeasy!

We are starting to fill our 2015 calendar so contact us soon to reserve your date!

We have big plans for 2015 so stay tuned for updates!

Speakeasy Art Center
353 Court St
Pekin, Illinois 61554
(309) 267-2058

Monday, December 29, 2014


South Side Trust & Savings Bank, a subsidiary of Mid Illinois Bancorp, Inc., at its December 2014 Board Meeting, announced the promotions of Laura Dunton to Personal Trust Officer, Lori King to Assistant Cashier, Assistant Consumer Lending Manager, and Jim McCready to Assistant Cashier, Visa/Merchant Administrator.
Dunton has been with South Side Bank since 2007.  She has a Bachelor of Science degree in Business from Illinois State University.  She is a graduate from the Cannon School of Trust and is a Certified Trust and Financial Advisor.  Dunton is a volunteer for the Peoria Public School’s Reading Buddies Program.
King has worked in the banking industry for 22 years, serving at South Side Bank for the past 5 years.  She attended Illinois Central College and has completed many courses through the American Bankers Association.  She is a 2010 graduate of the East Peoria Chamber of Commerce Leadership School.  King is a volunteer for the Morton Pumpkin Festival, Easter Seals, and United Way.
McCready has worked in the banking industry for 27 years, working for South Side Bank for the past 5 years.  He holds a bachelor’s degree in finance from Illinois State University.  McCready is an active member of the Athletic Boosters for Illinois Valley Central High School in Chillicothe.
South Side Trust & Savings Bank, a locally owned financial institution since 1922, has $649 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.

Monday, December 22, 2014

Regional Business After Hours Coming Up!

Hopedale Medical Clinic Welcomes Julie Emrick

Mackinaw Valley Vineyard Upcoming Events

Mackinaw Valley Vineyard and Winery
Merry Christmas and Happy New Year from Mackinaw Valley
Vineyard and Winery

Upcoming Events


December 19th to 24th 
ALL Christmas Gift Items 50% OFF
All Non-Christmas Gift Items 25% off  
WINE 10% Case Discount, mix and match 


Murder Mystery Dinner by UpStage Productions
Sherlock Holmes and the Temple of Doom
February 13th, 6-9pm and February 14th, 5:30-9:30pm
Tickets on Sale Now

Sherlock, Nancy and Jessica are on the hunt for Treasure and Murder!! Sherlock Holmes, Nancy Drew, and Jessica Fletcher are on a wild and dangerous treasure hunt. But so is the amazing archeologist Louisiana Jones! The only thing that can keep one of them from winning - is murder. Arrival is between 6-6:45pm for seating, wine tasting and "mingling" with the cast, this is your chance to let them know, if you want to participate in the show. There are three complimentary wine samples per guest at the tasting bar and wine can be purchased by the bottle or glass, beer and sodas also available. The performance begins between 6:45-7pm, and will be held in the tasting room in the main building. Dinner is served buffet style after the first act. Dessert is served to the table. Tickets on sale call 309-359-9463 to reserve or email, mackinawwinery03@gmail.com for questions.  
Admission is $45+tax per person for dinner, dessert and the show,
Reservations required.   
Vegetarian entree available by prior request.
First Trivia Game Night
February 21st, 6:30-9:30pm 

Winter Hours:
December , Open Daily Noon to 5pm through Christmas Eve
Closed December 25th through February 6, 2015
Open for 2015 on February 7, 2015, Noon to 5pm

Dear Friends,
Thank you for a wonderful year in 2014 and we wish you and yours many blessings for this Holiday Season and a Happy New Year in 2015.
All the Best,
Paul and Diane Hahn and family
Mackinaw Valley Vineyard and Winery

Save 25% on all Chocolatier Confectionary Chocolates now through December 24th!
 cookies, bark, creams!!! YUM!

Offer Expires: December 24th, at 5pm

Speakeasy Art Center Holiday Hours

2014 is winding down and we want to thank you all for your continued support to art in our community. We will not have our regular gallery hours from Dec 20th until January 6th. You can however reach me at info@speakeasyartcenter.com
 to address questions or schedule a time to visit the gallery.  
During this time we are working on our exciting 2015 calendar.
 We have several new things to announce and lots more classes to offer.We are looking forward to a fun new year cultivating the arts in Pekin!
 All scheduled classes and events are still occurring during this time.
 Wishing you a great holiday season with your family and friends! ~Shannon

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Check Out This Weeks Chamber Connection

You can check out this weeks Chamber Connection!!

Welcome to our Newest Member

LegalShield Independent Associate Mickey Shemansky
Pekin, IL 61554
Mickey Shemansky, Manager
Unlimited access to the legal system throughout the United States and four provinces of Canada through a closed network of provider attorneys. Unparalleled identity theft protection with COMPLETE RESTORATION by Kroll licensed investigators if your identity is ever compromised. Protection provided for individuals, families, and businesses. 

Monday, December 15, 2014


A record $40 million Extraordinary Dividend was recently announced by CEFCU’s Board of Directors and will be distributed to the Credit Union’s member/owners.  The amount each member will receive was determined by dividends earned and interest paid during the first 11 months of the year, as of November 30, 2014.  On December 16, dividends will be deposited to members’ Savings accounts.
            Over the last 15 years, CEFCU has returned $115 million in Extraordinary Dividends to members.  CEFCU Board Chairman, Brad Arnold, stated, “This Extraordinary Dividend is the largest in the history of the Credit Union.  CEFCU continues to see strong financial results, and this success is due in no small part to the continued loyalty of member/owners.” 

          Mark Spenny, CEFCU President/CEO, added, “CEFCU is a strong financial institution.  Members handle their finances in an extremely responsible manner, which means the Credit Union has low loan losses.  In addition, members are very loyal, and are committed to doing more of their business with CEFCU.  As a member-owned financial institution, the Credit Union’s staff and the volunteer Board of Directors work diligently to keep the best interest of member/owners at the forefront of every decision we make.  When a credit union’s business is even better than projected, members share in those benefits — which this year resulted in a $40 million Extraordinary Dividend!  It’s members’ money, and that is what makes CEFCU not a bank. Better!”

          Members can learn more about this year’s Extraordinary Dividend from CEFCU’s President/CEO, Mark Spenny, at cefcu.com/dividend.

          With assets totaling over $5 billion, CEFCU serves over 300,000 members through 20 central Illinois Member Centers and 3 Member Centers in Santa Clara County, California; the CEFCU Financial Center; the Money Center 24 ATM Network; CEFCU’s website, cefcu.com; CEFCU’s Mobile website, m.cefcu.com; the surcharge-free CO-OP ATM Network; and the CU Service Center Shared Branch Network.

Membership Renewals

Thanks to the following who recently renewed their investment in the Pekin Area Chamber of Commerce:

CJ's Café
Getz Manufacturing
J & J Consulting Firm
Lloyd Orrick

Friday, December 12, 2014

Help Coming for Lock and Dams

Congressman Aaron Schock (IL-18), along with leading industry representatives, trade associations, labor groups and other stakeholders, today commented on recent congressional action to improve inland waterway infrastructure in the 18th Congressional District.

On Dec. 3, The U.S. House of Representatives passed H.R. 647, which provides for an increase in the fees barge operators pay to fund new lock and dam constructions and major rehabilitation projects along inland waterways. The bill passed on a broad bipartisan 404-17 vote. A growing coalition of industry and labor groups have petitioned Congress in recent years to raise the barge user fee to address the $8 billion backlog of repairs on the aging system. The new fee will increase from 20 cents per gallon of diesel fuel purchased to 29 cents. The Senate is expected to pass the bill within days, and the President has agreed to sign it.

December Puttin' On Pekin

The December Puttin' On Pekin breakfast featured holiday entertainment by Dan Taylor, Val Springborn and Miss Nora Springborn.  Dave Osborn from Trouble Free Plumbing won the early prize and Mitch O'Shaughnessy won the late prize.  Congratulations to all the winners of our big year end door prize drawings:  Jay Hall, Jeff Dill, Larry Nelson, Al Tharp, Mickey Shemansky, Joe Privett, Teresa Mack, Steve Brown, Drew Lockwood, and Rhonda Hodges.  You can see more pictures from this event at:  http://picasaweb.google.com/PekinChamber

Timbercreek After Hours

Thanks to Timbercreek Rehab and Health Care for hosting a great Business After Hours on December 11th.  As always, the food and refreshments were abundant and delicious. You can see more pictures from this and other chamber events at http://picasaweb.google.com/PekinChamber

Thursday, December 4, 2014

Mobile Medicine: Pekin Hospital’s Mission to Guatemala

Pekin Hospital’s mission is to improve patient health in our community. But recently, the definition of “community” expanded to include a village halfway around the world. From November 14 to 21, a team of about 40 people—most affiliated with the Hospital—traveled to the rural, mountainous area of Jalapa, Guatemala, to provide medical care for thousands of people with no access to traditional medicine. “The need was great,” stresses Cindy Justus, Mission Coordinator and Pekin Hospital Unit Director of ER1 and Urgent Care.

Originally, the mission group was scheduled to travel to Liberia, but the Ebola outbreak forced a change of plans.  After weeks of research for an alternate location and collaboration with Drs. Van Dyke, Lovell, and Honan, Guatemala was chosen.  

Preparation took place through frequent emails and monthly meetings where they tackled jobs like packaging medication into individual dosages.  The team worked very hard for 10 months leading up to the trip. That preparation only took them so far, however. A facilitator from Caribbean Lifetime Missions traveled to Guatemala and established a relationship with a Guatemalan church base to identify villages with the most need of medical care.  Approximately half of our mission team has participated in previous mission work and helped coordinate setting up the clinics in village school buildings.  For the most part, third world countries share very similar medical concerns, but unusual area specific diagnoses always seem to crop up. “We always have to improvise,” Justus says.

The team set up a command center in their hotel’s conference room, where they divided the 35 suitcases full of supplies into fourths for the four clinic days. Each day, they took the allotted supplies to the makeshift clinic—a school, in this case, though Justus says she’s conducted clinics everywhere from churches to grass huts.

Because there’s no way to predict the ailments they’ll treat, the physicians have to make an educated guess about which medications to bring. They weren’t equipped to perform invasive or even minimally invasive procedures; severe cases were referred to the nearest hospital. Instead, they focused on conditions like parasite infestation, respiratory problems, high blood pressure, wound infections, STDs, visual problems, skin disorders, birth anomalies, arthritis, headaches, poor nutrition, dental issues and other ravages of abject poverty. In addition, every patient received prayers.

The Mission team was able to treat over 1,700 patients in four daysa recipe for physical and mental exhaustion. So what’s the draw? It’s a calling, believes Justus, who has completed ten medical missions. “I feel like I get more out of it than the patients I serve,” she says. Part of the allure is providing desperately needed front-line care, a primary reason many Pekin Hospital physicians and employees got into the field.

Supporting medical missions is a hospital-wide endeavor, from Pekin Hospital CEO Bob Haley to the hundreds of hospital employees who help with fundraising. Justus also appreciates the support of community partners and hopes it leads to a better understanding of Pekin Hospital’s purpose. “These are caregivers with compassionate hearts,” she says, “not just for our community, but for those in need around the world.”

Hopedale Commons Open House

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Membership Renewals

Thank you to the following companies who have renewed their investment in the Pekin Area Chamber of Commerce:

1-Star MVP
Avanti's Ristorante

Classic Members
Baumgarten Distributors
Jim Maloof Realtor
Jost/Becker/Jost Architects
ReMax Home Realtors
Dr. Robert J. Johnson, DMD
Security Finance
Sun Valley Subdivision

Individual Member
Glen Rittenhouse

Upcoming Events at the Speakeasy Art Center

Thursday Night is Craft Beer Night! 
All the cool kids will be there!
 Bring your friends and come down!

Friday Night is Pekin Main Street's Christmas on Court!
Come join our downtown business's celebrating the holidays!
Special guests and events will be offered at each location. Don't forget Santa and the Mrs will be there too! 
 You can also take a carriage ride! Within the Speakeasy we will feature The Pekin Human Rights Committee All the Littel Snow Angels program. We will also have our Young Artist reception from the last 6 weeks during this time. Stop by and sign your young artist up for new classes starting in January.
Be sure and stop and see us!

Sign up now for Saturdays Christmas Card Workshop!
email speakeasyrenae@gmail.com to enroll

This week is the last chance to get tickets for The Christmas Variety Show! This is going to be a lot of fun! The kids will love it! Lunch will be served prior and there is special time with Santa and his friends after the show! email info@speakeasyartcenter.com to get your tickets!

Make sure and stop by for this photographic exhibit from the 1930's to the 1950's. 
Come downtown and enjoy the arts!

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Hopedale Wellness Center

Chamber Connection

Check out your weekly Chamber Connection by clicking here!

Welcome to Our Newest Member!

River Valley Mechanical Service Inc.821 Brenkman Dr.
Pekin, IL 61554
Rich Jordan, Owner
Mike Hamilton, Owner
River Valley Mechanical Service Inc. specializes in residential and commercial heating, cooling and ventilation. They work with boilers, chillers, furnaces, a/c, exhaust fans and hoods.

Pekin Library Groundbreaking

he Pekin Public Library Board of Trustees held a groundbreaking ceremony for their rennovation and expansion project. The $6 million dollar project should allow the library to reopen in the late spring of 2015. The library is currently housed in temporary facilities at East Court Village. Library Board President Sue Crowell, Director Jeff Brooks, and Mayor Laurie Barra all spoke to the crowd that braved the cold temperatures. City Council members, city staff, library board trustees, library staff and State Senator Dave Koehler were all in attendance.  You can see more pictures from this event at http://picasaweb.google.com/PekinChamber

Monday, November 24, 2014

November Biz Barometer

Christmas Variety Show

Come support The Speakeasy Art Center and enjoy a Family Fun Christmas Variety show/play  by The Artistic Community Theater. We will have special time with Santa and all his friends. There will be a luncheon of soup and sandwiches served. Cost is $20 for Adult /$35 for a couple and $10 for Children. email info@speakeasyartcenter.com for tickets

Illinois American Water Reminds Customers to Protect Pipes for Winter Weather

Cold weather is upon us in Illinois and Illinois American Water is advising homeowners to make sure their homes are prepared for winter weather.  

“Following last year’s harsh winter, we want to remind customers that sub-freezing temperatures for an extended period can cause pipes in vulnerable areas to freeze
and burst and result in costly damage,” said Illinois American Water President Karla Olson Teasley. “By taking the proper preventive steps, customers can avoid
worrying about frozen pipes and making expensive repairs to damaged plumbing inside and outside of the home.”

Property owners are responsible for maintenance of the water service line from the curb to the house, as well as any in-home piping. Illinois American Water encourages
residents to take the following precautions to reduce the risk of freezing and bursting pipes.

Before frigid weather sets in:
•        Know the location of your main water shut-off valve. If a pipe freezes or bursts, shut the water off immediately.
•        Protect your pipes and water meter. Wrap exposed pipes with insulation or use electrical heat tracing wire – follow manufacturer instructions closely to avoid a fire hazard.
           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.

•        Know which areas in your home, such as basements, crawl spaces, unheated rooms and outside walls, are most vulnerable to freezing.
•        Eliminate cold air sources near water lines by repairing broken windows, insulating walls, closing off crawl spaces and eliminating drafts near doors.

When temperatures are consistently at or below freezing:
•        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 to help keep them from freezing, although be careful to not create a tripping hazard.

If your pipes do freeze:
•        Shut your water off immediately. Don’t attempt to thaw frozen pipes unless the water is shut off, as freezing can often cause unseen cracks in pipes or joints.
•        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.

If you are going to be away from your home for more than a few days:
        Have a friend, relative or neighbor regularly check your property to ensure that the heat is working and the pipes have not frozen.
        Also, a freeze alarm can be purchased for less than $100 and will call a user-selected phone number if the inside temperature drops below 45 degrees.

In addition to pipes indoors, customers can help protect their own and their neighbors’ homes by keeping fire hydrants clear of snow. Substantial snow accumulations combined with
the after-effects of plowing roads and parking lots can leave fire hydrants partially or completely buried in snow. Clearing hydrants can help firefighters easily locate them and access
water quickly, saving valuable time to possibly save lives and structures.

Also be sure that your water service provider and other utility companies have the correct phone number to reach you in an emergency.  Illinois American Water customers can manage
their account information online at
My H2O Online.  Customers should also consider following their utility service providers on social media as well, to get the latest updates on their computer
or smart phone. For more tips and information, visit
http://www.amwater.com/ilaw/learning-center/wise-water-use.html or follow us at www.facebook.com/ilamwater and www.twitter.com/ilamwater

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

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Sazani's Ribbon Cutting

The Pekin Area Chamber of Commerce recently welcomed a new member, Sazani's Steak and Pasta House.  Gene Wamsley from the North Pekin Village Board also participated in the ribbon cutting, along with Sonny and Ben.  Located at the former Chateau on the Lake restaurant at 901 Chateau Drive in North Pekin, they are open for lunch and dinner from 11:00 am to 9:00 pm Sunday through Thursday and 11:00 am to 10:00 pm Friday and Saturday.  They also have large banquet rooms.  More information is at www.sazanis.com or 309.583.0094.

Jo's Seafood and Steak Grill Grand Opening

Representatives from the Pekin Area Chamber of Commerce and the City of Pekin gathered to welcome Jo's Seafood and Steak Grill to Pekin.  Chef Oliver Valenzuela and his brother cut the ribbon as part of their grand opening celebration.  Offering the freshest selection of seafood, meat and vegetables, Jo's Seafood & Steak Grill provides  a perfect atmosphere for their guests. The food is excellent, the menu is diverse, and the service is warm.  Open daily at 11:00 a.m. at 2307 Court Street.  Reservations are suggested.  (309) 620-9888; www.josseafood.com

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Get Busy Living - Champion Fitness Physical Therapy

November 2014
Fall - Winter  Edition

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Jeff's Holiday Message
It's been a bit cold lately, so here we go with the 2014 Fall/Winter edition of the GBL Newsletter...just in time for the holidays. In this issue...
  • Champion's Model for Success
  • A Busy Fall for Champion clinics
  • A CEO can have back problems?????
  • Holiday stressed????
  • A couple of Champion Holiday recipes
Something for everybody!

"Southern Flavor" Comes to Champion
The Model of Success Used for Almost 20 Years
For years, Champion Fitness Physical Therapy has been synonymous with Pontiac and central Illinois. Not so any longer. The model used by Champion is reaching out to several southern communities as well.


Southern Clinics Have Active Fall
      Upgrades, Anniversaries, & Searches

Autumn 2014---
Two clinics received upgrades
One clinic held its first anniversary
And...the search for new potential clinic sites goes on....


Anyone Can Have Back Problems! Even a CEO
Champion Fitness CEO Mike Cohlman, who has been with company since 2003, is no different than most people. He's a husband, a dad, a coach once in awhile, and he comes to work every day. And, like many of in today's society, he has a bad back. See what he did to handle his situation...