Wednesday, August 26, 2020



PEORIA, IL  The Alzheimer’s Association is inviting Peoria residents to join the fight to end Alzheimer’s by participating in the Alzheimer’s Association Walk to End Alzheimer’s® on Saturday, October 3, 2020.


The Peoria Metro Walk to End Alzheimer’s continues, but instead of hosting a large gathering, the Alzheimer’s Association is encouraging participants to walk as individuals or in small groups on sidewalks, tracks and trails across Peoria.   


“This year’s Walk to End Alzheimer’s will be everywhere,” said Wendy Vizek, Vice President, Constituent Events at the Alzheimer’s Association. “The pandemic is changing how we walk, but it doesn’t change the need to walk. This year, more than ever, we need to come together to support all those affected by Alzheimer’s and other dementia. With the dollars raised, the Alzheimer’s Association can continue to provide care and support to families during these difficult times while also advancing critical research toward methods of treatment and prevention.”


Time-honored components of the Walk to End Alzheimer’s are being replicated. On Walk day, an Opening Ceremony will feature local speakers and a presentation of Promise Flowers to honor the personal reasons participants join together to fight Alzheimer’s and all other dementia, all delivered to participants' smartphones, tablets and computers. A small group of Alzheimer’s Association staff and volunteers will create the iconic Promise Garden in a “view only” format on Walk day at Marshall Plaza to honor all those impacted by Alzheimer’s.


To enhance the participant experience leading up to the event and on Walk day, new features are being added to the Walk to End Alzheimer’s mobile app to create an opportunity for the community to connect. Participants can use the app and new “Walk Mainstage'' to track their steps and distance, follow a virtual Walk path, manage their Facebook fundraisers, and access information and resources from the Association and Walk sponsors to help individuals and families affected by the disease. A new audio track is available to encourage participants along the way and to congratulate them upon completion of their Walk.


“Alzheimer’s is not taking a hiatus during COVID-19 and neither are we,” said Mary Sorensen, Senior Statewide Director for the Walk to End Alzheimer’s at the Alzheimer’s Association Illinois Chapter. “We must continue Walk to End Alzheimer’s, and we are working with all participants to ensure they have a powerful and moving experience that is felt when we are together. Many of our constituents are at higher risk when it comes to COVID-19 and we know that our volunteers and participants appreciate our commitment to keeping all involved healthy and safe.”


More than 5 million Americans are living with Alzheimer's disease – the sixth-leading cause of death in the United States. Additionally, more than 16 million family members and friends provide care to people living with Alzheimer’s and other dementias. In Illinois alone, there are more than 230,000 people living with the disease and 587,000 caregivers. 


To register and receive the latest updates on this year’s Walk to End Alzheimer’s, visit: 


Alzheimer's Association Walk to End Alzheimer’s®

The Alzheimer’s Association Walk to End Alzheimer’s is the world’s largest event to raise awareness and funds for Alzheimer’s care, support and research.  Since 1989, the Alzheimer’s Association mobilized millions of Americans in the Alzheimer’s Association Memory Walk®; now the Alzheimer’s Association is continuing to lead the way with Walk to End Alzheimer’s. Together, we can end Alzheimer’s.  


About the Alzheimer's Association Illinois Chapter:

The Alzheimer’s Association® is the world’s leading voluntary health organization in Alzheimer’s research, care and support. Our mission is to eliminate Alzheimer’s disease through the advancement of research; to provide and enhance care and support for all affected; and to reduce the risk of dementia through the promotion of brain health. The Alzheimer’s Association Illinois Chapter covers an 87-county area with offices in Chicago, Joliet, Rockford, Springfield, Bloomington, Peoria, Quincy and Southern Illinois. Since 1980, the Chapter has provided reliable information and care consultation; created supportive services for families; increased funding for dementia research; and influenced public policy changes. The Illinois Chapter serves more than half a million Illinois residents affected by Alzheimer's disease, including more than 230,000 Illinois residents living with the disease. Our vision is a world without Alzheimer's®. For more information visit or call our free 24/7 Helpline at 800.272.3900.


August 25, 2020 – Did you know that 1 in 5 children in the Peoria area struggles with hunger, wondering where their next meal will come from? 

The Junior League of Peoria will launch a weeklong effort August 29 - September 4 to start a community-wide conversation about poverty and food insecurity and to raise funds to make a difference. 

The Little Black Dress Initiative boosts awareness about the impact of generational poverty in our community through social media sharing, personal conversations and events. 

“Peoria is home to the second most economically distressed zip code in Illinois, and the 48th most economically distressed zip code in the nation,” says Andrea Tortora, Junior League of Peoria president. “The Little Black Dress campaign is one way we can begin to tackle poverty in our own backyard.” 

Funds raised will help relieve family stress around food insecurity by expanding the hands-on Kids in the Kitchen program and other Junior League projects. In addition, Junior League members receive leadership training that empowers them to advocate for the cause. 

How the Little Black Dress Initiative works: 

Anyone can participate. 

o Complete the LBDI Participation Form to express your interest

o Wear the same black outfit all week, to illustrate the lack of options 

faced by someone living in poverty 

Encourage your contacts to make a donation to the Little Black Dress campaign 

Share your experiences on social media with daily posts, using the hashtags #JLP #LBDIpeoria 

Support one or more Little Black Dress events 

Donate online TODAY

With strong support from Peoria businesses, we are able to harness the power of our community in this effort. The week’s events include: 

Saturday, August 29 | All Day: Fox Pub & Cafe Saturday Spotlight. Order ahead or dine in any time on Saturday at Fox Pub & Cafe and a portion of all food sales will go back to the LBDI Campaign. RSVP on Facebook 


Contact: Andrea Tortora, President

Direct: (513) 470-3631


Tuesday, August 18, 2020

City of Pekin to Provide 3rd Funding Round of Small Business Grants

Pekin, IL: The City of Pekin is now accepting additional applications for grant awards using the allocation made available through its Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) program funded by the US Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). These grants are intended to support qualifying local businesses in the Pekin community that have been impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. During the first and second rounds of funding, the City of Pekin awarded grants to 138 local businesses and self-employed individuals. Funds under this program are available but are limited and it is the City’s intent to focus the remaining resources to supplement existing federal or state programs already available to effectively support local Pekin businesses that retain the employment of citizens. Since the use of CDBG grant funding is governed by federal regulations, grant dollars will be directed to primarily benefit individuals with low and moderate income (LMI). The City also has an “Urgent Need” category to address businesses not directly assisting individuals with LMI. Grant funding under the “Urgent Need” category shall only occur as long as those funds are available. To qualify and be eligible for available grant funding, businesses must meet certain requirements that include, but are not limited to:

•Having a location in Pekin city limits.

•Having less than $1 million in annual gross revenues.

•Having fewer than 50 W-2 employees.

•Being a for profit business.

•Being in operation on or before July 1, 2019.

•Participation in one or more federal aid programs to enhance cash flow availability.

•Continued payment of employee payroll or health insurance, or certification that previouslyfurloughed/terminated employees will be rehired.

Businesses meeting the requirements above shall be first considered eligible for a:

•$5,000 maximum grant award for businesses with W-2 employees;

•$5,000 maximum grant award for businesses with a commercial location (excluding home-based, booth rental or workstation rental) that provides services consisting of direct or closecontact with customers such as fitness centers and salons (with or without W-2 employees);or

•$2,000 maximum grant award for self-employed individuals and businesses that do not haveW-2 employees.

The City will try to fund as many qualified applicants as possible. Should the number of applications received exceed available funding, the following criteria will be utilized to prioritize applications:

•The level of participation by businesses in other federally-funded programs such as thePayroll Protection Plan and/or Small Business Administration’s Economic Disaster InjuryGrant and Loan Programs.

•The number of jobs retained as of the date of the application, as well as, the number of jobsthat are planned to be rehired due to the assistance from the City and other federally-fundedprograms.

•The degree to which businesses have been directly impacted by new public healthrequirements (social distancing) related to the COVID-19 pandemic.

•The degree to which businesses have been impacted due to being considered “non-essential”and have lost their sources of revenue.

•The degree to which businesses are public-facing.

•Whether businesses operate within any of the following critically impacted industries:


    oBuilding Material and Garden Supply Stores;

    oClothing and Clothing Accessories Stores;

    oElectronic and Appliance Stores;

    oFood Services and Drinking Places; and

    oFurniture and Home Furnishings Stores;

    oGeneral Merchandise Stores;

    oHealth and Personal Care Stores;

    oMiscellaneous Store Retailers;

    oMotor Vehicle and Parts Dealers;

    oPersonal and Laundry Services;

    oSporting Goods, Hobby, Book, and Music Stores;

    oSupport Activities for Transportation; or

    oTransit and Ground Passenger Transportation.

Grant funds may only be used by awardees for working capital expenses that include employee salaries, general operating expenses (rent or utilities), inventory, and advertising/marketing expenses. Business owners may start the application process by reading the full grant requirements at and then clicking on the website link for the online application portal. Applications will be accepted until 11:59 AM on Monday August 31, 2020. Grant recipients should be notified soon thereafter with funding disbursements anticipated in September, 2020. 

Wednesday, August 12, 2020

The 2020 Discraft Ledgestone Insurance Open returns to Greater Peoria for its 10th annual event this week.

The competition begins Thursday, August 13, for the top male and female professional players. The women’s division will play four rounds at Sunset Hills in Pekin, while the men’s division will play two rounds at Northwood Park in Morton and two rounds at Lake Eureka Park in Eureka. Defending champions Paul McBeth and Paige Pierce return to defend their 2019 wins, with Paul going for his third  Ledgestone title and Paige going for her second Ledgestone title. The 2020 event will once again be featured on the Disc Golf Pro Tour, with live streaming coverage on the Disc Golf Network. With a professional purse exceeding $100,000, the tournament will once again benefit St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. Due to the pandemic, spectators will be limited.

Monday, August 10, 2020


Savant Unveils New Name, Brand to Better Reflect its Deep Bench of Expertise and Holistic Approach


PEORIA and BLOOMINGTON, Ill. (Aug. 3, 2020)Savant Wealth Management (formerly Savant Capital Management), a nationally recognized, fee-only advisory firm headquartered in Rockford, with locations also in Peoria and Bloomington, today unveiled its “Wise Counsel” rebrand that includes a new company logo, color palette, website, name change, and tagline.

Savant’s fresh approach to delivering wealth management sets itself apart from competitors and was the driving force behind the rebrand efforts. Functioning much like a forward-thinking medical center, Savant leverages its deep bench of financial advisors and in-house estate planning, taxation, trust, insurance and accounting specialists to collaborate, provide valuable insights, and develop a plan of action to address the unique situation of each client.

“In an industry where everyone calls themselves a financial advisor it’s hard for clients to know who is really in their corner, and who is truly unbiased. Today’s clients are looking for wise counsel,” said Brent Brodeski, CEO of Savant. “It’s difficult to select a financial advisor when it seems like all firms look, talk, and act alike. We believe Savant’s Wise Counsel brand will point investors toward a firm that is truly on their side every step of the way.”

The name evolved from “Savant Capital Management” to “Savant Wealth Management” to better describe the comprehensive wealth management services it provides and the continually expanding value proposition it offers clients since its founding.

When designing the new brand, the firm started with the meaning of its name. A savant is a “learned, wise scholar” which speaks to Team Savant and its quest for continued, lifelong learning. From there, the concept evolved into the “Wise Counsel” tagline, which is represented by the logo that is an owl shaped like a shield. With this symbolic shield as its guide, Team Savant stands ready to provide the wise counsel necessary to build ideal futures for its clients, family, and the communities it serves.

Savant serves as a trusted advisor and fiduciary, working in defense of its clients’ best interests by walking alongside them on the path to reach their financial goals. As part of this journey, Savant offers its proprietary Ideal Futures Financial Health AssessmentSM that provides an objective and wide-ranging audit of an individual’s financial situation. It focuses on 10 key areas to prioritize aspects of an individual’s financial situation that need attention to help create a plan of action, unique to each client. This helps to deliver customized plans for clients to move further along the path toward their ideal futures. Savant’s new website offers a lite version of the full assessment tool to help individuals identify potential gaps or items needing the help of a financial advisor.

The new brand communicates Savant’s wise counsel as one that is approachable and offers an evidence based and common sense approach to wealth management. It is wide and deep, constantly learning and evolving, and it never assumes that the same approach will solve similar problems. Wise counsel comes from its collective education, experience, wisdom, and spirit of Team Savant.

For more information about Savant Wealth Management, visit

About Savant Wealth Management

Savant Wealth Management, formerly known as Savant Capital Management, is a leading independent, nationally recognized, fee-only firm serving clients for 30 years with more than $8 billion in assets under management. As a trusted advisor, Savant Wealth Management offers investment management, financial planning, retirement plan, and family office services to financially established individuals and institutions. Savant also offers corporate accounting, tax preparation, payroll and consulting through its affiliate, Savant Tax & Consulting. 

Savant Wealth Management (“Savant”) is an SEC registered investment adviser headquartered in Rockford, Illinois. SEC registration does not imply a certain level of skill or training. This material is for general educational purposes only and is not intended as personalized investment, legal, or tax advice. Past performance may not be indicative of future results. Please Note: "Ideal" is not intended to give assurance as to achieving successful results. Different types of investments involve varying degrees of risk. Please see Important Disclosures at

Savant is headquartered in Rockford, with locations in Bloomington, Chicago, Downers Grove, Freeport, Hoffman Estates, Lincolnshire, Naperville, Peoria, St. Charles, Sterling, and Wilmette, IL; Phoenix, AZ; Santa Fe, NM; Madison and Park Falls, WI; and McLean, VA.


Illinois Central College Culinary Arts Receives Exemplary Status on Re-Accreditation

 The Illinois Central College Culinary Arts Institute received re-accreditation from the prestigious American Culinary Federation Education Foundation’s Accrediting Commission (ACFEFAC) for its Associate in Applied Science Degree in Culinary Arts Management program. Remarkably, the ICC program is one of only two Illinois culinary schools with the rare Exemplary status and the only one outside of Chicago. 

“We are incredibly proud of the Culinary Arts Institute at ICC. This accreditation lends additional credence to our already stellar program and ensures we continue meeting high standards and levels of quality in culinary education,” said ICC President Dr. Sheila Quirk-Bailey.  

To receive the ACFEF Exemplary distinction, the ICC program was confirmed to be in full compliance with ACFEF standards on two consecutive team reports. An onsite visiting team determined through a checklist and comparison of the program to the nationally recognized ACFEF Standards that the program had substantially met all eight Standards areas: Eligibility, Program Mission and Goals, Organization and Administration, Faculty and Staff, Curriculum, Facilities, Student Services and Assessment. The ICC Culinary Arts Management program will hold the Exemplary status for seven years. 

The acclaimed program provides students the opportunity to learn in a state-of-the-art environment designed to replicate a professional kitchen. Students gain experience and exposure through catering events, fundraisers and other extracurricular activities, and they benefit greatly from ICC’s high placement rate with local and national businesses.  

When the college was forced to transition to online learning in mid-March due to COVID-19, the Culinary Arts Institute demonstrated adaptation and innovation to keep students learning and engaged. Faculty created “food kit packages” containing ingredients and recipes needed to prepare dishes. These “take-home kits” allowed students to continue critical hands-on instruction from the safety of their home while faculty taught classes virtually.  

This fall, ICC culinary classes will be presented in a hybrid format, including both online lectures and face-to-face, on-campus instruction. The on-campus instruction allows students to return to the state-of-the-art kitchen facility for necessary hands-on learning. Social distancing, specific entry and exit points, and personal protective equipment for students and faculty will be implemented. Culinary courses where hands-on learning is not required, such as Sanitation and Product Identification or Beverage Management, will remain online only.

Looking ahead, ICC is already considering the trickle-down effects the pandemic may have on culinary curriculum. Chef Charles Robertson, ICC professor and program chair, said, “There are many factors in flux in preparing students to enter an altered food industry. Issues like staffing, what menus will look like, and how businesses will balance delivery versus dine in are unclear yet. We will see what industry needs are during the pandemic recovery period and adjust the curriculum accordingly. I am confident our program will continue its exceptional status and adapt to the industry’s new reality.”  

“These unprecedented times have had a large impact on our industry. Fortunately, the culinary scene has always been, and will remain, flexible and resilient,” said Chef Robertson. “The demand for restaurants has existed for hundreds of years. While COVID-19 has been a big challenge to chefs and restaurateurs, I know the resiliency of the leaders in the food industry will prevail.” The Culinary Arts Institute is located in Dogwood Hall on the Peoria Campus. For more information regarding the ICC Culinary Arts programs, visit  

Virtual interviews with Chef Charles Robertson are available and encouraged.