Some Shops with V-Day On Their Minds

2018 Vintage Love Tour at 9 Locations
Self-guided tour of girlfriends and glorious finds on Saturday, Feb. 10 from 10 am – 4 pm

Studio on Sixth at 215 S Sixth
The first 35 customers get an adorable metal heart magnet for free on Saturday, February 10.

Yoga7even at 605 E Washington
February We❤U Sale – Enjoy 1 week unlimited Yoga $15 for the month of February!

Incredibly Delicious at 925 S 7th
February 13 Mardi Gras menu, King Cake, and Lemon Shake Up Cake
February 13 Attending Secret Recipes’ tasting event at the Governors Ballroom at the State House Inn with cake samples
February 14 “Love in Paris” Lunch giveaway for 2 plus brunch items with a featured menu with special valentine desserts
February 17-18th Paired desserts with Danenberger Family Vineyards for National Wine Day

Springfield Clock Shop at 629 E Washington
These beautiful clocks are on sale

The Land of Lincoln Barbershop Chorus headquartered in the Hoogland
The Chorus is once again offering their singing valentines! Order a singing valentine or get more information

Recycled Records at 625 E Adams
The entire month of February is their 38th annual Record Riot. Everything in the store is on sale up to 50% off. $2.00 LP’s are $1.00, used CD’s and DVD’s are buy two get one free, video games and systems, stereo equipment, beer signs, antiques, jewelry ALL on sale

Willow & Birch Salon at 521 E Washington
Check out their Who Do You Love? Facebook Contest, where you can tag those you love to be entered to win in weekly giveaways happening every Friday and then be entered to win a $100 gift certificate to our boutique on Valentine’s Day.

You can also stop by and kiss a card to be entered to win a gift set of their fave lip products! Simply stop in, try on a lip, and then give your best smooch (to paper) to be entered to win.

Itty Bitty Fashion Trunk at 403 E Adams
Grab your best gals and head down to the shop on Feb. 10 from 10a-5p, as they celebrate Galentines Day! Enjoy 10% off the entire store, refreshments and enter to win a $50 IBFT gift card.

VELE at 524 E Monroe
February 14 – A Night Under the Nordic Lights delectable 7-course Nordic-inspired tasting menu complete with complimentary sparkling wine and a little gift to take home. Seating at 5:45pm or 8:00pm. $85 per person (gratuity not included). Reservations

DSI Seeks Marketing Support

Downtown Springfield, Inc. (DSI) has initiated a Request for Proposal (RFP) process to identify a vendor, agency, consortium or contract employee (Agent) who is/are qualified to provide day-to-day marketing services showcasing Downtown Springfield as a growing, vibrant neighborhood & business district.
The duties require an Agent who has demonstrated experience in multimedia content creation and distribution. Agent will work closely with the DSI Executive Director and Promotions Committee to plan and execute marketing activities for the association.

Download the Request for Proposals for Marketing Services 2018

Request for Proposal Released – January 11, 2018
Questions Due – January 29, 2018
Proposals Due – Friday, February 2, 2018 by 5 pm
Interview Period – February 7-9, 2018
Planned Contract Award Date – February 12, 2018

Nominees for Downtown’s Best of 2017

Ace Sign and SAA shared an award for the Art Benches project for 2016. Who will win for 2017?

On January 25, Downtown Springfield Inc. will hold its 25th Annual Dinner–including awards recognizing the most buzzworthy people and places in downtown over the past year.

After a public nomination period which ended in November, the Awards Committee is thrilled to announce the 2017 nominees in each of the following categories. Award Committee Chair Jane Mosey-Nicoletta is a Past President and past Volunteer of the Year winner at DSI. “Thanks to everyone who weighed in on the nominees this year — we have a great mix of new and old favorites who people really root for,” said Mosey-Nicoletta.

The 2017 winners, along with Green Leadership Award winner, Downtown Advocate, DSI Volunteer of the Year and Wally Henderson Lifetime Achievement Award, will be announced during the Dinner.

This is DSI’s biggest fundraiser and party of the year to support our work to increase Volume (ie foot traffic), fill Vacancies, increase Vitality and create a shared Vision for downtown’s future. Get your tickets before the early bird deadline of January 16 to support our work in 2018 and to celebrate a year of growth and change in Springfield’s downtown district in 2017>

Look back at DSI Award History 2008-2016

Best Signage
The Roost
Springfield Vintage
Tacology 101

Impactful Public/Private Partnership
Sangamon CEO Program
SAA’s Paint the Street
Urban Sassafras Parklet with IL Realtors/CAR & City of Springfield

Best Downtown Event
DSI’s Friends of the Market Street Dinner
Fat Ass 5K
The Parent Place’s Halloween Parade

Best Retail
The Roost
Springfield Vintage
Urban Sassafras

Best Restaurant
Long Nine Junction
Tacology 101

Best Nightlife
Floyd’s Thirst Parlor
The Legacy Theater
Obed & Isaac’s Microbrewery

Innovative Business Concept
Hair of the Dog Bar/bershop
Urban Sassafras Take & Make Kits

People’s Choice Holiday Walks Window
Augie’s Front Burner
Murphy’s Loft
Wild Rose

Best Advocate
Brent Boesdorfer
Linda Renehan
Erin Svendsen

Best Renovation
Loukinen’s on Fourth
St. George Building

Best NFP Initiative
100+ Who Care
186 Foundation Pop-Up Bookstore
Central Baptist Feast of Plenty Thanksgiving Meal

Best Creative Promotion
Incredibly Delicious‘ Social Media Cake Campaigns
Urban Sassafras Girls’ Night Out
Willow & Birch‘s Countdown to Downtown

Buy Your Tickets to Celebrate 25 Years of DSI

The 25th anniversary of the founding of Downtown Springfield Inc. by business and city leaders is nearly here! Join us (fittingly) on January 25, 2018 for DSI’s Annual Dinner, an evening that will entertain and dazzle, honoring our growing neighborhood and the people who make it special.

Support DSI’s work by purchasing a table or individual tickets now>

This is the biggest fundraiser that DSI holds every year to fund our work. DSI is a 501(c)6 business association that is funded primarily by business memberships, fundraiser and event sponsorships. As a Main Street organization, we undertake a plethora of activities to increase the economic and cultural vitality of downtown Springfield. Our 2017 work led by paid staff, a volunteer board of directors and hundreds of community volunteers, included working on business attraction and small business issues, advocating for more residential units, and promoting this neighborhood as a destination for dining, shopping and socializing. We are also well-known for our 2017 events including the Art Alley Pop-Up, Old Capitol Farmers Market, Amaranth Apple Festival, Friends of the Market Street Dinner, First Fridays and other business promotions and Old Capitol Holiday Walks that bring thousands to the downtown district every year.

Our generous sponsors of the 25th anniversary Annual Dinner are pulling out all of the stops to celebrate the quarter-century mark in style and set the stage for the coming days of vision, vitality, volume and decreasing vacancies.

Read who this year’s nominees are>

Add the date to your calendar>

Trust us when we say, people will be talking about this event in the weeks following — and you won’t want to miss it!

Premier Sponsor
President Abraham Lincoln Springfield, a DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel
Hanson Professional Services

VIP Pre-Party Sponsor

Watts Copy Systems

Anniversary Video Sponsor
Illinois Realtors

Alaina Beaird Graphic Design
Anvil & Forge Brewing and Distilling
Buzz Bomb Brewing Co.
Frye Williamson Press
Network Knowledge
Spinner Plastics
131 Photography
Wm Van’s Coffee House


Help Save the Historic Tax Credit

The federal historic tax credit to revitalize historic buildings was eliminated in the House Tax Reform bill released yesterday by the House Ways and Means Committee.

We know that the Historic Tax Credit has a proven track record of creating jobs, spurring private investment, and generating fiscal revenue. While the Tax Reform bill is intended to stimulate economic growth, elimination of the federal historic tax credits undermines the revitalization of older and historic town centers like Springfield’s.

Congress will begin debate on this bill next week with a vote expected by mid-November.

Join us as a citizen who supports downtown revitalization by ACTING NOW to communicate the value of the Historic Tax Credit to your Representatives and Senators in Congress:

Find out who represents you in Congress>
Call during office hours. Ask to speak to tax staff or ask for a tax staffers’ email address.

A suggested outline of your email message or phone call:

Introduce yourself as a constituent.

Say “I heard the historic tax credit is eliminated in the House version of the tax reform bill. I am extremely concerned that this important community redevelopment incentive will no longer be available to revitalize Springfield’s central historic district. Our National Register District in downtown Springfield was just expanded a few years ago specifically so that additional buildings could use the federal credit and be rehabilitated.”

You can add how the federal historic tax credit has been influential in revitalizing downtown Springfield:

  • The St. George Building Apartments, which were filled in a few months, at the corner of 3rd and Monroe, used federal historic tax credits to finance it.
  • Neither the Booth Building or the Ferguson Building would be moving forward as projects without the historic tax credit. (Vele Restaurant is opening next week in the Ferguson.)
  • The Chamber’s project to rehabilitate the former First United Methodist Church at Capitol and 5th wouldn’t be moving toward construction without the historic tax credit.

There have been multiple rehab projects in the downtown that have utilized the credit in the last 10 years:

  • the KingTech headquarters in the Buck Building on the north side of the square;
  • the Fisher Latham Block across from the Presidential Library on 6th housing Abe’s Old Hat and Wild Rose on the first floors (done by Carolyn Oxtoby and Dick Morse);
  • the Jennings Ford Dealership rehabbed by INB at 4th and Jackson, and
  • the Windsor Hotel rehabbed by Development Services Corporation into beautiful office space at 4th and Adams (with a portion opening as Itty Bitty Fashion Trunk in late November).

These are just a few examples of the power of the federal historic tax credit. Thanks for your advocacy!

Tell Us Who Should Receive This Year’s DSI Awards

Every year, Downtown Springfield Inc. recognizes the business owners in the downtown area who are leading the way to a busy, friendly, bold, entertaining and coveted neighborhood.

This year’s Annual Dinner is actually the 25th celebration of the creation of DSI, the downtown business association that also is a nationally-accredited Main Street organization. Fittingly enough, we’re hosting it at the President Abraham Lincoln Hotel a Doubletree by Hilton and the BOS Center on January 25, 2018. (25=25)

The first step in the nomination process comes from you. Log your suggestions using our online survey tool>

We’ll announce the winners at the Annual Dinner. Tickets will be available soon. This is one celebration you won’t want to miss! And it supports DSI’s work, so that’s a two-fer.

Our Spooky Downtown

On October 28, downtown is bursting with Halloween goodness, practically from dawn to dusk!

All Day Long: Spooky Rock Hunt!

Springfield Vintage and #SpringfieldILrocks have teamed up for a massive downtown rock hunt! You can paint some rocks like artist Felicia Olin did (see left) and drop them off at Springfield Vintage before October 28 and they will be hidden around downtown — or you can simply be on the hunt that day for super cool, collectible rocks! Email Springfield Vintage for more information>

9:30 – Noon: Halloween at the Market

This festive event wraps up the 2017 market season. Local organizations and businesses combine efforts to create FREE, fun-filled activities for the whole family, including children and dog costume contests, hands-on activities (build your own spiderweb with the Kidzeum!), and special guests. Prizes will be awarded to 1st, 2nd and 3rd place in all four categories.

Noon to 4 pm: Halloween Family Carnival at the Hoogland

This family-friendly carnival has grown BIGGER this year and will feature carnival booths with prizes and candy, performances of your favorite Halloween songs by the Hoogland Kids, Teens and Juniors and everyone is dressed up in their most elaborate costumes! If you are feeling in a spooky mood, dare to venture through their haunted house! They also have a new haunted house for younger children where little ones can walk through Charlie Brown’s Pumpkin Patch. Parents can find a great place to relax and have a fall beverage while the children experience Minny Mouse’s Tea Party, Willy Gaston’s Dart Throw, and the Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry.

4:30 – 6:30 pm: Shop Spooky Specials

Downtown businesses are getting in on the Halloween fun, too! They’ll be staying open later on this particular Saturday with treats, fun and specials — and not many tricks:

Augie’s Front Burner – Stop by for candy!
Cold Stone Creamery – Stop by for candy!
Daisy Jane’s – Make and Take Halloween crafts!
Milk & Honey Fresh Market – Stop by for candy!
Murphy’s Loft – Stop by for candy, free Halloween koozies & 10% off!
Recycled Records – Stop by for candy & Used CD’s/DVD’s are buy 2 get 1 free!
The Roost – Dare for a spooky walk-through!
SAA Collective in the Hoogland – Free gift to costumed visitors (while supplies last)!
Springfield Vintage – They’ll pay your sales tax!
Studio on 6th – Stop by for candy; enjoy a free gift with purchase; and make your mark on the pumpkin!
Udder Hut – Special is Wormy Froyo! Plus… Fish for Apples
Urban Sassafras – crafts & cookies for kiddos!
Wild Rose – Free Face Painting and a tasty treat!
Wyndham Lobby – Stop by for candy and warm apple cider!
Z Bistro – Special dinner is Spaghetti Brains with Eyeballs! Plus… Fish for Apples
411 Bar & Grill – Stop by for candy!

4:30 – 6:30 pm: Annual Halloween Safety Event

Please join the Springfield Police and Fire Departments at Springfield Fire Station #1 at 825 E. Capitol Street
Learn great Safety tips for Halloween
Have a ghoulishly good time Trunk or Treating
Climb and explore rescue vehicles
Meet McGruff the Dog
Enjoy face painting and other children’s activities
Get .99 cent kids meal coupons from Sonic
Questions? Call 217-.788-8360 ext. 4238

5:30 – 7:30 pm: Trick or Treat at the Old State Capitol

The Illinois Executive Mansion Association can’t host the Governor’s popular event at the Mansion this year because of renovations, so they’re inviting Children Pre-K through 5th grade to this FREE event for Halloween treats at the Old State Capitol.

7 – 8 pm: Goosebumps Concert at First Presbyterian

The downtown church with the big red door is hosting their annual Goosebumps concert! Alongside the organ classics typically enjoyed during the Halloween season, the concert will also feature a variety of vocal pieces, dramatic reading, and interpretive performance art. You’re invited to dress for the concert — all in black, all in white, in costume — in order to participate more fully in the experience. The concert itself is free: the church will gladly accept donations to benefit hurricane relief.

7:30 pm – 8:30 pm: First Annual Halloween Parade to benefit The Parent Place

Families will line 5th and 6th Streets around the Old State Capitol as floats, children and other special Halloween guests parade the streets in this lighted evening parade! Contact 753-8730 to enter.

8 pm: Rocky Horror Picture Show

It’s the return of The Rocky Horror Show brought to you by ADHD Productions in association with the Hoogland Center for the Arts, and Club Station House. This weekend marks the eighth year of the the live production at the Hoogland!

8 pm: Halloween Dreams, a Spooktacular Musical Review

This enchanting musical revue at the Legacy Theater brings the magic of Halloween to the stage, celebrating the holiday of imagination.
On the occasion of its 13th Anniversary, the show rematerializes with a cauldron full of new songs, as well as all the favorites audiences have come to love: “Old Black Magic,” “Stormy Weather” “Moondance” and “Monster Mash.” These songs, brewed together with puppetry, silliness and 50 pounds of candy, create a delightful treat for the whole family!

9 pm – ?: Zombie Walk

Redbird Electric is hosting a Zombie Walk. More details coming…..

And….don’t ever forget Lincoln’s Ghost Walk!

Check our calendar for other downtown Halloween events that don’t fall on October 28.

Solar Eclipse Activities

On Saturday, August 19, Springfield Makerspace will be creating safety viewers and other eclipse-themed craft projects from 1-5 p.m. at the Lincoln Public Library.
On Monday, August 21, you can find the Wyndham Springfield City Centre sales team out and about in the downtown neighborhood handing out “eclipse bags!” They will be stocked with a pair of eclipse glasses, moon pies, and sun chips — much better than glasses recalled from Amazon! Plus they’ll have an eclipse themed specialty drink at The Grille that day.
Radio station WYMG-FM 100.5 is hosting a viewing party at the Bank of Springfield Plaza, located outside of the BOS Center in downtown Springfield. The station will give away 400 pairs of eclipse viewing glasses. Music will be played and food and drink will be sold. The event runs from 11:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.
Yoga7even’s Monday/5:30 pm class will transform into a New Moon/Solar Eclipse class! A solar eclipse on the same day as a new moon is a powerful cosmic event making it a supercharged new moon. They will be doing a fun Chandra Namaskar (moon salutes) as well as Surya Namaskar (sun salutes) to invite balancing energy. Let’s release old patterns & focus on a strong intention to invite new possibilities with the new moon!!
If you are traveling south, realtor Phil Chiles of Capital Real Estate Group and his wife are parking cars for the Egyptian Board of Realtors at the Bald Knob Cross.

Our Farmers Market is Epicenter of Eat Local Challenge

September is one of the most abundant months of the year for Illinois farmers, featuring warm season crops like tomatoes and melons alongside cool weather crops like lettuce, apples, and winter squash.

However, the return of school session, cooling temperatures, and an increasing disconnect between shoppers and seasonality have all led to a drop off in farmers market attendance during this month. The resulting decline in sales increases food waste and weakens the economic viability of small farms before entering their slower winter months.

“There is such a wide variety of products this time of year,” says Molly Gleason of the Illinois Stewardship Alliance (ISA has managed the Market on behalf of DSI for the past two years), “and because the harvest is so plentiful in September, it’s also one of the most affordable times to shop locally. Plus there’s all kinds of varieties and flavors that you won’t find in the grocery store, like baby fairytale eggplants and green striped zebra tomatoes. It’s really one of the best months to shop at your farmers market.”

The Eat Local Challenge, organized by ISA in partnership with farmers markets across central Illinois, aims to combat the annual slump in sales that farmers experience during the month of September by encouraging shoppers to pledge to buy locally.

All you have to do to participate in the Eat Local Challenge campaign is to pledge to spend $20 each week on locally grown food. Last year, the first year of the campaign, over 250 people took the Challenge across Central Illinois. This year ISA hopes to have 500 participants, which would mean at least $40,000 in sales of locally-grown food for the Central Illinois region.

Did you realize: if even half of the shoppers just at our Market participated, we would have over 2000 participants this year??

Registration for the Eat Local Challenge will open THIS SATURDAY during National Farmers Market Week. You can register in person by visiting the Market Booth at 4th and Adams or any Central Illinois residents can sign up online at

The first 250 participants will receive a free, USA made, farmers market tote bag filled with more information on shopping locally—available at the Market in September. Additionally, all Challenge participants will be subscribed to a weekly e-newsletter featuring seasonal recipes, farmers market meal plans, storage and food preservation tips, and updates on local food events going on throughout the region.

“September isn’t the winding down of the farm, it’s the full throttle peak season for us. We have tended our land and crops for six months getting to our grand finale and it’s disappointing when we have no one show up for our end of the year extravaganza,” says Jacque Suttill-Simpson of Suttill’s Gardens, a long-time Market vendor. “We farmers experience the ‘slump’ right when our best is yet to come.”

In addition to our Old Capitol Farmers Market, other participating markets include ones in Downtown Bloomington, Downs Village, Urbana, Champaign, the Peoria Riverfront, and Streator.

Emily and Chef Corey from Long Nine Junction are one of four chef teams providing a course at the Street Dinner.

In addition to taking the Eat Local Challenge, how else can you support the Old Capitol Farmers Market and the farmers who sell their goods every week? 

Thursday, September 7: Downtown Springfield Inc. Friends of the Market Street Dinner

Thursday, September 14: Slow Food Springfield Tour of Petersburg Poultry Processing

Thursday, September 21: Local Flavors Dinner at Engrained Brewing Company

Sunday, September 24: Illinois Stewardship Alliance Annual Harvest Celebration

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