Dear Members:

New for the Yuletide, the City of Elmhurst’s Explore Elmhurst Express Trolley program will feature a Holly Trolley on December 9 and 16 as an added enticement for our residents to continue to shop and dine local during this holiday season.

Running from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. both Saturdays, the FREE ride program connects Elmhurst City Centre and the Spring Road and York and Vallette Business districts—where merchants will offer special discounts to riders.

A GPS “Trolley Tracker,” linked to the Explore Elmhurst website, will allow riders to find the trolley’s exact location along the route.

Handicapped accessible and compliant with the American Disabilities Act (ADA), the seasonally-colored red trolley will make stops at York and Schiller streets, Second Street and Addison Avenue, Cottage Hill and Virginia Street (Wilder Park), Spring Road and the Illinois Prairie Path, and then York and Vallette in five-minute intervals.

Riders also can attend Santa’s Visit to the City Centre Plaza from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. on December 9 events, Spring Road’s Sleigh Rides, Ice Sculptures and Santa from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. and City Centre’s Hometown Holiday Block Party from 4 to 8 p.m., both on December 16, and related special events.

For those three districts, the City will give businesses a Holly Trolley poster to display if they offer a special promotion to riders.  Participating businesses will be promoted via social media and in a handed-out flyer.  E-mail the City’s Business Development Coordinator Erin Jason or Communication Manager Kassondra Schref by December 4 at 2 p.m. to participate.

Last summer, Express Trolley ridership grew by 61 percent in 2017 at 18,745 riders (up from 11,645 in 2016) and averaging close to 1,000 per week over the 16-week program—including some 2,300 in Week 15 over Elmhurst City Centre’s Rock The Block weekend.

Centennial Celebration Capital Campaign
Since going “public” as part of September’s Chamber of Commerce Month activities, our one-of-a-kind $250,000 Centennial Celebration Capital Campaign is at 64 percent of goal and growing thanks to more than $2,600 in gifts and pledges.

Part of ECCI’s 100th Anniversary in 2018, the Capital Campaign features the Ralph P. Pechanio Student Internship Endowment Fund at Elmhurst College and Second Century Fund special projects, including development of a public Civic Hall of Fame memorial.

With some $115,026 in gifts and pledges, the Pechanio Endowment Fund is at 77 percent of its $150,000 goal.

October donors to the Pechanio Endowment Fund were Patrick Sheehan, Director Julie Miller, Director Eva Sanchez and former Chamber Executive Assistant Bard Savage.

With some $44,317 in gifts and pledges, the Second Century Fund is at 44 percent of its $100,000 goal, including 73 percent (or $36,445) of the $50,000 unrestricted goal and 13 percent (or $6,700) of the $50,000 Civic Hall of Fame goal.

The Second Century Fund received an unrestricted gift from Sanchez, while 2013 Civic Hall of Fame inductee Doug Beach and Sanchez contributed to the memorial project fund.

Your tax-deductible financial support, as a business and/or individually, in cash or as a gift-in-kind donation at any level is both wanted and needed—and much appreciated.

Thanksgiving Turkey For All
Some 60,000 DuPage County residents will be less hungry this holiday season thanks to the more than 7,500 who participated in the 34th Annual Dan Gibbons Turkey Trot through downtown Elmhurst on Thanksgiving Day morning, pushing career fundraising past the $4 million mark.

Elmhurst Our Kind of Town will air cable TV coverage on Comcast Channel 6 and AT&T U-Verse Channel 99 in December on Fridays and Saturdays at 6 p.m., with Ken Bartels of Community Bank of Elmhurst and yours truly serving as your hosts.  The program also can be viewed online at

Also, Villa Park Office Equipment thanks all the Chamber members who so generously donated 4,200 items and $2,065 in gift cards to their 6th Annual Thanksgiving Food Drive benefitting clients of DuPage PADS based on their “Shop Members First” Member Message on October 31, reported Kevin Conro, VPOE’s Marketing Department.

Happy Anniversaries
Seven members are celebrating Chamber anniversaries in December, as follows:  35 yearsPhillip’s Flowers & Gifts; 30 yearsFiebrandt HVAC; 25 yearsElmhurst Art Museum and Episcopal Church of Our Saviour; 15 yearsJB Painting; 10 yearsClarion Hotel Conference Center; and 5 yearsHinsdale Management Corporation.

New Members
The Chamber welcomed 13 new members in November—our best recruiting month in more than four years (19 in September of 3013—as follows:  AB Production Associates, Capital One Commercial Card, Christopher Glass and Aluminum, Compu-Mail, Doc’s Victory Pub, Flying House Media, G.L. Hair Design, Millenia Investments, Rizazz Advertising Inc., Sherwin-Williams, SimpleWisdom Wellbeing Solutions, Tidal Commerce and Victory Meat and Seafood.

Reactivated Members
The Uptown Shop reactivated its membership in November.

No Longer Members
The Chamber said goodbye to the following five members in November:  F.O.C.U.S. Online Counseling, J.C. Licht Company, Quintessential Retirement Services, Principal Financial Group and Illinois State Representative Patti Bellock.