Greetings To All, “Believe in what you do and think hard about the kind of changes that you want suits your work to affect.” This is the creed their that best expresses the promise and progress made by the Berwyn Development Corporation (BDC) in 2016. In a specific year where fellow Americans voiced an overwhelming need for change, the City of Berwyn revealed its best year business needs. yet. At one hundred percent capacity, the completion of Superblock, Cermak Plaza and Berwyn Gateway The end result is Plaza Phase II mark the strongest areas of development and economic growth. Not to be overshadthat the membership at owed, the BDC also deployed nineteen distinctive grand openings represented in each of the City’s large is creating and four corridors. It is now commonplace to take a stroll in the Depot District to Oliver’s Prime building greater levels of Cut or Lavergne’s Tavern followed by a musical experience at The Outta Space. In an individual and collective ongoing effort to showcase Berwyn as a destination area, new businesses such as sustainability. Top Cut Comics, Krew Rock Lounge and The Alley Fitness Boxing Gym provide It must be unique venues with distinctive products and services. said that the The Why Berwyn? Campaign continues to be the driving force by which BDC continues to surrounding areas are taking note of Berwyn’s cultural diversity and recognize that to those historic housing, which in turn is having a significant positive who are blessed with much, impact on housing sales along with an increase in new much is expected. The Philanbusinesses moving to Berwyn. Take a moment to visit thropic Commission continues to whyberwyn.com to learn about the many initiatives be a proud cornerstone of the BDC in being implemented by the City, BDC and our its ongoing efforts to award grants to local inventive business base. The BDC is also organizations that sustain the economic proud of the progress made in rolling vitality of our fair City. This year, Youth Crossroads, out our newly developed and the Berwyn Park District, Awake’s STEM program, the highly successful MemberNorth Berwyn Park District’s Best of Berwyn and Lincoln ship Tiers. These Tiers Middle School Choir demonstrated exemplary qualifications. We allow members to seclose 2016 with a sense of humility and a confidence that the momenlect a marketing tum of this year’s successes will continue to forge a path leading to greater package that prosperity for the City of Berwyn, its residents and businesses during 2017. I best thank you for your time and ask that you remember to “Buy Berwyn” and continue to support the many activities and events that will take place throughout the year.
Richard “Jousef” Mondragon BDC Board President
Through a shared vision with the community, the Berwyn Development Corporation is committed to those activities that support and contribute to the economic growth and vitality of our proud City. The Berwyn Development Corporation (BDC) markets Berwyn regionally and nationally as a prime business and leisure destination. We are here to promote Berwynâ€™s energy and culture to visitors and residents and to create unique development opportunities for business. The BDC is a public-private partnership with the City of Berwyn that provides chamber services and economic development to all segments of the Berwyn community. The BDC is a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit membership organization that serves business and individual members.
Letter from the President Mission, Values & Table of Contents Board, Staff & Commissions Map of Berwyn, Grand Openings
Commercial Loan Program Redevelopment Projects Coming Soon Business Events & Awards Recognition CEO Spotlights Small Business Education
Affinity Program Philanthropic Grants Business After Hours New Special Interest Groups Special Events Marketing Programs & Berwyn in the News Annual Review 3
EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE OF THE BOARD
BOARD OF DIRECTORS Christine Tully Aranza
Richard “Jousef” Mondragon
President | Berwyn Resident
Vice President | Horrorbles & Autre Monde Café & Spirits
World’s Largest Laundromat BMO Harris Bank, NA
Vice President | Berwyn Resident Secretary | Holistic Divorce Resolution, Inc.
Treasurer | Culver’s
Executive Director | Berwyn Development Corp. Pictured Front Row: Andy Sotiropoulos, Angela Tomassetti, Anthony Griffin, Jousef Mondragon, Guy Hollis, Gilbert Peña and Tom Benson Pictured Back Row: Christine Tully Aranza, Tony Laureto, Anthony Belcaster, Scott Lennon, John Aranza, Jennifer Mitchell and Alba Lovero. Not Pictured: Mary E. Cleary, Loren Middleton, Brendan O’Connor
Autre Monde Café & Spirits
Big Guys Sausage Stand Berwyn Resident Connie’s Family Restaurant & Cocktails
Mary E. Cleary MacNeal Hospital
Angela Tomassetti Fit Club
2016 BDC COMMISSIONS Erika Corona-Owens
Economic Development Commission
Commercial Loan Commission
Director of Chamber Services
Bob Hodgetts Accountant
Special Events Coordinator
Judy Saraceno-Swenson Program Coordinator, Chamber Services
Project Manager, Chamber Services
Met on the 3rd Thursday of the month at 1:00 pm
Project Manager, Communication & Design
Met on the 2nd Thursday of the month at 4:00 pm
Met on the 3rd Wednesday of the month at 1:00 pm
Chamber Services Commission
Project Manager, Economic Development
Special Events Commission
Met as needed
Met on the 1st Wednesday of the month at 5:30 pm
Depot Special Events Ad Hoc Commission Met on the 1st Wednesday of the month at 6:15 pm
Route 66 Special Event Ad Hoc Commission Met as needed
Roosevelt Road Special Events Ad Hoc Commission Met on the 2nd Wednesday of the month at 6:30 pm
Cermak Road Special Event Ad Hoc Commission
Met as needed
Pictured Front Row: Judy Saraceno-Swenson, Erika Corona-Owens and Elaina Chastain Pictured Back Row: Paul Ruane, Amy Crowther, Bob Hodgetts, Sande Brennan and Anthony Griffin Not Pictured: Megan Strama
STAFF & COMMISSIONS
W. ROOSEVELT RD 9
S. LOMBARD AVE
12. Avenue | 7003 W. Cermak Rd
4. Oliver’s Prime Cuts & Fresh Seafood | 6908 W. Windsor Ave
13. Careplus Discount Pharmacy | 6840 W. Windsor Ave
5. Fifth Third Bank | 7100 W. Cermak Rd
14. Mindful Wellness, LLC. | 3245 S. Grove Ave
6. House of Slots, Inc. | 6823 W. Stanley Ave
15. Krew Rock Lounge | 6319 W. Roosevelt Rd
7. The Outta Space, Inc. | 6840 W. 32nd St
16. The Alley Fitness Boxing Gym | 6711 W. 26th St
8. Lavergne’s Tavern | 6546 W. Windsor Ave
17. Top Cut Comics | 7122 Ogden Ave
9. Shelby’s 6601 W. Roosevelt Rd.
18. Sprint Connect, LLC. | 7102 W. Cermak Rd
*Not Pictured: Seven Point. (1132 Lake St. in Oak Park)
W. CERMAK RD
W. 26TH ST
S. EAST AVE
3. McDonalds #2549 | 7181 W. Cermak Rd
S. OAK PARK AVE
11. Home Run Inn Pizzeria | 6825 W. Cermak Rd
S. GROVE AVE
2. Ross Dress for Less | 7065 W. Cermak Rd
10. Blaze Pizza W. Cermak Rd
W. 32ND ST 7
VE NLEY A
DSOR W. WIN
E EN AV
D W. OG
S. HARLEM AVE
1. The Garage Smokehouse & Bar | 3202 S. Grove Ave
W. PERSHING AVE
The Garage Smokehouse & Bar 3202 S. Grove Ave
The Garage Smokehouse & Bar is a Depot District eatery and watering hole. Enjoy great Texas style BBQ slow smoked to perfection, a wide variety of beer, craft liquors and live entertainment. Patio dining is perfect for warm weather!
Ross Dress for Less 7065 W. Cermak Rd
Ross Dress for Less is the nationâ€™s largest off-price apparel and home fashion chain. The 2,700 square foot retailer was a part of the Cermak Plaza redevelopment project. This location is the 49th location in the Chicagoland area!
McDonald’s #2549 7181 W. Cermak Rd
From a humble start as a small restaurant, McDonald’s is proud to have more than 36,000 restaurants in more than 100 countries. Newly redesigned, this location includes a two-lane drive-thru, contemporary color schemes, digital menu boards & more. The rebuild of this unit was part of the final phase of redevelopment in Cermak Plaza.
Oliver’s Prime Cuts & Fresh Seafood
6908 W. Windsor Ave
Oliver’s Prime Cuts & Fresh Seafood serves prime cuts, fresh seafood and farm-to-table specialties made from scratch in a casual environment in the Depot District. Chef Oliver has 30+ years with American Contemporary, French and Latin cuisine!
Fifth Third Bank 7100 W. Cermak Rd
Fifth Third Bank is a diversified financial services company. Fifth Third operates four main businesses: commercial banking, branch banking, consumer lending and investment advisors. This was the second grand opening in the second phase of the redevelopment project at Berwyn Gateway Plaza.
House of Slots, Inc. 6823 W. Stanley Ave
House of Slots, Inc. is a gaming cafe offering snacks, soda, coffee, beer and wine. They are located in the Depot District right off of the Metra BNSF line.
The Outta Space, Inc. 6840 W. 32nd St
The Outta Space is a new multi-faceted venue in the Depot District. The business offers workshops, classes and communal art space along with live music, art exhibitions, film screenings and more in the lounge.
Lavergne’s Tavern 6546 W. Windsor Ave
Lavergne’s Tavern features a chef-driven menu and local beer selection with 20 rotating beers on tap. From craft cocktails to a kid-friendly menu, Lavergne’s has something for everyone. They are located right off of the Metra BNSF line in the Depot District.
6601 W. Roosevelt Rd
Shelby’s is an inviting main street cafe for adults to enjoy a light meal, socialize and game in a warm and welcoming environment. The extensive menu includes items such as a spinach artichoke dip, mini beef sliders and freshly baked cookies.
7122 W. Cermak Rd Blaze Pizza is all about exceptional quality at lightning fast speed. Blaze was the third opening in Berwyn Gateway Plaza Phase II. Blazing hot oven + dedicated pizzasmith + 180 seconds = fast-fire’d, perfectly crisp perfection.
1132 Lake St., Oak Park IL
Complete with a glass-enclosed showroom, a selection of over 100 different products and a library of “how-to” videos, downtown Oak Park’s Seven Point Medical Cannabis Dispensary is the most accessible dispensary in the state.
Home Run Inn Pizzeria 6825 W. Cermak Rd
Home Run Inn has been serving fresh, all-natural thin crust pizzas since 1947. One of Chicago’s oldest pizzerias, HRI pizzas are baked using all-natural ingredients with no preservatives. As one of the first companies to expand into the frozen pizza business, Home Run Inn frozen pizzas are one of the most demanded pizza brands on a national scale. This opening completed the “Superblock” development that included Big Hurt Brewhouse.
7003 W. Cermak Rd Avenue, the 3rd largest national plus size retailer, brings plus size fashion to Berwyn. This store marked the final grand opening in the redevelopment of Cermak Plaza, taking the vacancy rate down from 11% to zero percent.
Careplus Discount Pharmacy 6840 W. Windsor Ave
Careplus Discount Pharmacy is a full service pharmacy providing discount pricing, free home delivery, and friendly, personal service. The new location in the Depot District caters to patrons of all ages and pharmaceutical needs.
Mindful Wellness, LLC 3245 S. Grove Ave
Mindful Wellness, LLC provides a holistic continuum of high quality mental and behavioral health services to Berwyn. They service the whole family, ages 3 through 90, offering several modalities of therapy to treat a wide range of needs including but not limited to depression, anxiety, trauma and substance abuse.
Krew Rock Lounge 6319 W. Roosevelt Rd
Krew Rock Lounge is a 6,000 sq ft bar, restaurant, lounge and music venue. They feature two bars, two stages, and a lot of delicious beer. Full kitchen coming soon!
Top Cut Comics 7122 W. Ogden Ave
Top Cut Comics brings players and gamers of all kinds together in an exciting, encouraging and competitive environment. Their 5,000 sf space is brimming with a variety of products, from comic books and collectible cards to figurines and t-shirts.
Sprint Connect, LLC. 7102 W. Cermak Rd
Sprint Connect, LLC offers a comprehensive range of wireless and wireline connections to consumers, businesses and government users. Sprint is the fourth grand opening in Berwyn Gateway Plaza Phase II.
The Alley Fitness Boxing Gym
6711 W. 26th St
The Alley Fitness Boxing Gym is a local fitness boxing gym offering a wide variety of fitness boxing and kickboxing classes, personal training, Tabata bootcamp programs and self defense seminars for patrons of all ages.
The BDC serviced 15 small business loans in 2016 valued at $2.3M in 2016. The BDC, in partnership with the City of Berwyn, administers a Commercial Loan Program as part of a concentrated effort to benefit the community of Berwyn by stimulating business growth and improving the city’s commercial areas. This includes the addition of a new microloan in 2016. Jaci’s Resale Shop located at 6615 West Cermak Road was funded for a microloan in order to expand inventory and operations for the Cermak Road business. Jaci’s Resale is a locally owned and operated small business that sells gently used clothing, furniture, kitchen accessories, electronics and collectibles. Commercial loans are available to start-up and established businesses located in the City of Berwyn. The Loans are structured like a standard bank loan and can be used for acquisition, build-out, equipment and working capital. The BDC also offers a Microloan Program as an additional financing tool for funding between $1,000 and $10,000 for a variety of uses including start-up costs, purchase of equipment, working capital expenses, facility rehabilitation and more. This source of alternative financing offers an expedited application and underwriting process with loan processing typically occurring within 4-6 weeks.
The second phase of Berwyn Gateway Plaza is a complete renovation of the commercial block on the north side of Cermak Road. Starbucks was the first store to open in late 2015. In 2016, Blaze Fast-Fireâ€™d Pizza, Fifth Third Bank and Sprint opened in the shopping center. Scheduled for completion in 2017, the project will welcome an additional three retailers. The completion of this phase of redevelopment will create an additional 18,017 square feet of new retail property within the City of Berwyn, adding new tax revenue and creating jobs at Interior of Sprint Connect, LLC. this increasingly popular
With the opening of Home Run Inn Pizzeria, the redevelopment of the commercial block between Grove Avenue and Oak Park Avenue on Cermak Road is now complete. In the late 1990s, redevelopment work began with the purchase the commercial block. The goal of the redevelopment work was to preserve the historic bank building and to add commercial users to the block. Home Run Inn Pizza opened their 9th location adjacent to Big Hurt Brewhouse. The fourth-generation family business is known for their Chicagoland pizzerias as well as their frozen pizzas. The approximately 4,500 square foot restaurant seats up to 120 patrons, offers a full bar, carry-out and family dining. 18
The $6M third and final phase of the Cermak Plaza redevelopment project negotiated between the BDC, City of Berwyn and Cermak Plaza Associates LLC was completed in 2016 and culminated with the opening of Ross Dress for Less and Avenue. This phase of work also included the late-2014 opening of LongHorn Steakhouse and completion of the modernized McDonaldâ€™s unit. The Center is now completely occupied after over $21M in private investment since the redevelopment work began in 2009. The Center has moved from being 60% vacant to 100% leased and fully renovated to ensure the long-term health of a critical commercial property for Berwyn. Cermak Plaza is the single largest producer of property and sales tax for the City of Berwyn and its schools and park districts.
The Berwyn Development Corporation and the City of Berwyn are working with additional commercial tenants that are anticipated to open in 2017. Look for the new openings from City Barbeque, Flapjack Brewery, Mattress Firm and Panera Bread.
BDC members and community leaders gathered to review the city’s economic development successes over the past year. Awards and recognitions were presented to selected recipients from the business community. Additionally, newly elected board members were installed. Named after one of Berwyn’s early architects, the Ashby Award is presented at the Annual Meeting to a Berwyn business that presents a professional and favorable image to Berwyn. The 2015 Ashby Award was awarded to Big Guys Sausage Stand.
The President’s award is presented at the Annual Meeting to an individual whose hard work and accomplishments exemplify the mission and spirit of the BDC. The 2015 President’s Award was awarded to Jeffrey S. Janda.
THANK YOU TO OUR TIER 6 MEMBERS! At the BDC, we are truly grateful for the opportunity to serve Berwyn’s business community. We proudly recognize the continued support of our Top Tier Sustaining Members. These members have made a notable investment in our economic development initiatives and support the charitable work that we complete through our new philanthropic grant program. These CEO Spotlights tell the stories of the leaders that generously support our work. Diocelino Rangel (Chico) is a passionate team-builder with over 20 years of experience in solving workforce challenges for both companies and communities. Chico has happily dedicated his life to motivating talented people to continuously improve in the workplace. Chico is often found collaborating and coaching his team on building real impact with customers and communities. Chico is the organizational guru of BTEC who has proudly recruited a high-functioning, cross-collaborative team to execute on the vision for BTEC. In his spare time, Chico loves to play golf and spend time with his family.
“WE ARE TRULY HONORED TO SUPPORT THE BDC’S PHILANTHROPIC GRANT PROGRAM. MAKING ACTIVE CONTRIBUTIONS TO BOOST THE ECONOMIC VITALITY OF BERWYN IS AN EXCEPTIONAL WAY TO PROMOTE CONNECTIVITY WITHIN OUR BUSINESS COMMUNITY.”
Berwyn Tech Entrepreneurship Center
Alberto Paracchini serves as President and Chief Executive Officer for Byline Bank, a role he’s held since 2013. Prior to joining Byline, Alberto held numerous executive positions in financial services for nearly 20 years. He served as Principal for BXM Holdings, Inc., a community bank-focused investment fund and spent 16 years at Popular, Inc. where he held leadership positions in both banking and mortgage subsidiaries. From 2006 through 2008, Alberto served as President and CFO of Popular Financial Holdings and CFO of E-Loan, an internet banking and mortgage company. Prior to 2006, Alberto headed all operational and technology functions at Banco Popular North America. He also served as CFO of BPNA where he was responsible for all financial and treasury activities.
“JUST LIKE YOU, WE ARE PROUD TO CALL BERWYN HOME. AND WE ARE JUST AS COMMITTED TO MAKING THE BEST OF THIS AREA’S AMAZING OPPORTUNITIES. WE ARE NEIGHBORS HELPING NEIGHBORS.”
Alberto graduated from Marquette University and received his M.B.A., with honors, from the University of Chicago Booth School of Business, with a focus on Finance and Business Economics. He currently serves on the board for Junior Achievement of Chicago and is a member of the Cook County Council of Economic Advisors and Economic Club of Chicago. He was born and raised in Puerto Rico and resides in Winnetka with his wife Aimee, where they are raising their three daughters. Alberto has completed seven Ironman triathlons and continues to enjoy swimming, cycling and running.
William H. Sperling received a Master’s Degree from the Graduate School of Banking at University of Wisconsin and a Bachelor of Business Administration & Marketing/ Marketing Management from University of Wisconsin at Whitewater. With more than 45 years in banking, Mr. Sperling believes financial institutions should support the neighborhoods they belong to by supporting the local businesses and community members. Republic Bank is a family-owned institution dedicated to serving our local communities. Our iconic rotunda building at 6501 S. Pulaski opened in 1964 and today remains an active branch. We expect to work hard for the next 50 years and beyond to help our customers meet their goals.
“WE ARE LOOKING FORWARD TO STRENGTHENING OUR RELATIONSHIP WITH THE BERWYN DEVELOPMENT CORPORATION AS WELL AS THE BERWYN COMMUNITY.”
“I THINK THAT WHAT THE BDC IS DOING IS AN AWESOME THING. IT MAKES ME PROUD TO BE A PART OF A COMMUNITY THAT SUPPORTS OTHERS. THEY TAKE CARE OF US, SO WE LIKE TO TAKE CARE OF THEM.”
Pizzeria & Bar
It’s been over 30 years since the first Paisans Pizza was opened in an 800 sq. ft space in Cicero, Illinois. Pete Fejzuloski began working for his father in Cicero at just 14 years old. Over the years Pete and his father took Paisans Pizza to the next level and opened their second location in Brookfield. However, Pete wanted to offer more for the guests, so he took the fast casual concept and opened his first full service restaurant in Berwyn. Pete didn’t stop there, he continues to expand Paisans year after year and doesn’t expect to stop anytime soon. Paisans Pizza is a REAL Family owned place and Pete plans to continue the tradition with his own family. 25
Tom Benson bought The World’s Largest Laundromat in 1999. While he had never operated a laundromat before, he was uniquely positioned for success having been a business broker specializing in the industry for a decade. Previously, Tom worked fifteen years for the state of Illinois, including a job with the Department of Children and Family Services as Deputy Regional Administrator for Management. He received his MBA from Loyola University (Chicago) in 1970. He has been active within the BDC since 2000, as a member of the Board of Directors and eventually President from 2002-2006. Tom’s two sons, Eric and Mark, are in the business as managers. He lives with his wife Rhoda in Oak Park.
“WE DON’T MERELY OPERATE IN THIS COMMUNITY, WE’RE PART OF ITS FABRIC. WE PRIDE OURSELVES ON OUR COMMUNITY-BASED PHILANTHROPHY AND ACTIVISM.”
“IN WORKING WITH THE BDC TO INCREASE THE OPPORTUNITIES FOR INDIVIDUALS AND LOCAL BUSINESS, TOGETHER WE ARE ABLE TO ENCOURAGE A VIBRANT, THRIVING COMMUNITY.”
Mary Elizabeth (M.E.) Cleary serves as Chief Executive Officer at MacNeal Hospital in Berwyn, which is part of Tenet Healthcare’s Chicago Market (formerly Vanguard Health Chicago). A highly qualified healthcare executive, M.E. has more than 30 years of experience in hospital finance and management. M.E. joined MacNeal in 2008 as Chief Financial Officer. In 2012, she was promoted to Chief Financial Officer for the Chicago Market, which consists of four hospitals – MacNeal Hospital, Weiss Memorial Hospital in Chicago, West Suburban Medical Center in Oak Park, and Westlake Hospital in Melrose Park. In 2015, M.E. returned to MacNeal to serve as Chief Financial Officer, while continuing to serve in her Market role. On November 1, 2016, M.E. was appointed Chief Executive Officer at MacNeal. Prior to coming to MacNeal, M.E. served as Regional Vice President of Finance Operations for Essent Healthcare in Nashville responsible for hospital acquisitions and financial turnarounds. Before that she served as a Chief Financial Officer for various investor-owned hospital organizations.
M.E. is a CPA with a Bachelor’s Degree in Accounting from Delta State University in Mississippi. She is a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants, the Hospital Finance Management Association, and the American College of Healthcare Executives. 27
SEMINAR: SUPERCHARGE YOUR SOCIAL MEDIA, PART 1 & 2
Led by speaker Stephanie L. Walters of Blue Top Marketing, Inc, these seminars taught business owners techniques to help create content that will get them noticed and increase their social engagement. Stephanie taught participants to look at the posts and emails that theyâ€™re creating, review the reports from social media and their email platform and analyze good and bad examples of posts and emails.
SEMINAR: OUTREACH (YOUR CUSTOMER IS ON GOOGLE...)
Optimizing SEMINAR: OPTIMIZING LINKEDIN
In a scheduled one-on-one session, the BDC aided business owners in the process of getting their complete business listing onto Google, from claiming their business to drafting a business description to taking/adding photos of their business.
Speaker Justin Knowles of Putnam Investments discussed why using LinkedIn matters, how to set up a LinkedIn account, marketing and organizing connections, researching competition and other LinkedIn business pages, advanced features of LinkedIn, and much more!
SEMINAR: WEBSITES THAT WORK FOR YOUR BUSINESS
BDC TALKS Power Breakfast
BERWYN BUSINESS CONNECT
This BDC Talks seminar featured a panel of experts including Brian Bernardoni (Chicago Assoc. of REALTORS ÂŽ), Myer Blank (Fisk Kart Katz & Regan, Ltd.), Sandy Bornstein (BMI Property Tax Reduction) and Anthony Griffin (BDC). Attendees learned how to lessen the burden of property taxes, understand the ins and outs of commercial leases and connect with our panelists that specialize in helping small businesses.
Presented by Beth Bannor of Bannor & Bannor Inc., this seminar helped business owners understand what is involved in having a website and how to make it work for their business. This presentation covered the anatomy of a great website, how social media fits in, Google analytics and more.
Money Smart Week took place between April 23rd and 30th in Illinois. The BDC, in conjunction with Paul Porter of the MB Financial Bank N.A. and the Berwyn Public Library, hosted a seminar on Business Lending, presented by Steve Grabavoy. Money Smart Week helps promote personal financial literacy by providing six days of focused presentations designed to help consumers learn to better manage their personal finances.
The Berwyn Development Corporation has partnered with the Google Maps â€œStreet Viewâ€? photography team to bring the popular Street View technology inside local business establishments to showcase area businesses in Google Maps and Google Search! Street View Indoor is a very significant part of how people find and engage with your Google Search and Google Maps 30
listing. Participating in this program makes your business listing standout and get the attention of in-market, spend-ready people looking for your products and/or services.
The BDC Board of Directors established a Philanthropic Committee to coordinate charitable contributions to causes within the community. The BDC committee makes awards to local not-for-profit public charities, giving priority to those efforts that positively impact economic vitality, provide services directly to beneficiaries, address root problems and serve disenfranchised groups. Berwyn headquartered not-for-profits can make application for funding throughout the year as needs arise with awards based upon available BDC funding.
NORTH BERWYN PARK DISTRICT’S BEST OF BERWYN A BDC philanthropic grant was awarded to the three finalists of the North Berwyn Park District’s 2016 Best of Berwyn Junior Citizen Recognition Program. The program recognizes the top 8th grade students in the City of Berwyn. Nominated by educators, community leaders and elected officials, the students are individually interviewed and go through a judging process that narrows the candidates down to three winners. The Best of Berwyn program recognizes the top students in the area based not only on academics but also on participation in the community. The BDC’s philanthropic grant helps to fund educational expenses.
LINCOLN MIDDLE SCHOOL CHOIR The Lincoln Middle School Choir was awarded a philanthropic grant from the BDC to help fund their choir trip to the America Sings! Festival in Washington, DC. The grant covered travel expenses.
The BDC awarded a philanthropic grant to Youth Crossroads, Inc. to support a social media project with their Youth Leadership Program (YLP). The YLP team chose to make a film focusing on teen depression and anxiety to provide greater awareness of important social issues and the value of youth to the local community.
BERWYN PARK DISTRICT SHADOW CREEK DISC GOLF COURSE In early 2016, the Berwyn Park District launched a project to add a disc golf course to Proksa Park. The project’s intention was to add a 9-hole disc golf course to the park for all to use; the BPD wanted to provide the community with a low impact but high engagement recreational opportunity. The BDC awarded a philanthropic donation to the project to help with funding the acquistion and installation of required of materials.
AWAKE AFTER SCHOOL SCIENCE CLUB The BDC proudly presented a philanthropic grant to Awake’s After School Science Club. The Science Club is designed for students in 1st through 6th grade to increase local youth interest in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) subjects. 33
Spring Office Party at
Cigars & Stripes BBQ Lounge
Multi-Chamber Speed Networking Four local chambers participated in the Speed Networking Event in February of 2016 (Austin, Berwyn, Forest Park and Oak Park-River Forest). The event allowed members and non-members alike to meet people from the larger community. 34
The BDC After Hours Spring Office Party took place at Cigars & Stripes BBQ Lounge in partnership with the Wednesday Journal and celebrated the release of the BDCâ€™s new resource guide. Members from the BDC, Forest Park, Oak Park-River Forest and Riverside joined the party.
Business After Hours Multi-Chamber Event at MacNeal Hospital in Forest Park MacNeal Hospital hosted a Multi-Chamber Business After Hours in late August of 2016. This BAH encouraged business owners to maximize their local network while enjoying hors d’oeuvres, beer, wine and refreshments in the outdoor courtyard. Participating Chambers included 35th Street, Berwyn, Forest Park, Oak Park-River Forest and West Suburban.
Attendees were invited to maximize your local network while enjoying food and beverages from over 15 local favorites, including Berwyn’s very own Lavergne’s Tavern and drawings from Paisans Pizzeria & Bar and Culver’s. Participating chambers included Austin, Berwyn, Forest Park, The Grand Corridor and Oak Park-River Forest.
Holiday Party at Lavergne’s Tavern The Berwyn Development Corporation invited the business community to join us for an evening of holiday merriment and networking
with other local business owners! The event was hosted at Lavergne’s Tavern and featured small bites, dessert and drinks. 35
Food & Beverage Roundtable 36
The Food and Beverage Roundtable group provides timely and proactive information for the hospitality industry. Topics covered in the 2016 F&B Roundtable included Cook County taxes, minimum wage, happy hour laws, social media practices, labor alternatives, overtime regulations and more. The group was moderated by the Illinois Restaurant Association and hosted by Autre Monde CafĂŠ and Spirits. Participating chambers included Berwyn, Forest Park and Oak Park-River Forest.
The Women in Business Group is Berwynâ€™s first and only forum for women in all levels of business. The group hosted informal meet-ups where attendees discussed topics agreed upon by the group, such as time management, best apps for business and word of mouth marketing. This is a great way to connect with other local professionals, learn new best practices and build comradery with other women conquering the same challenges you face in your business and career.
The City of Berwyn celebrated Independence Day with a fireworks display at the Morton West High School Football Stadium. The event was sponsored by World’s Largest Laundromat.
Depot District Mini-Golf Pub Crawl
4th of July Fireworks
The 12th Annual Pub Crawl brought together participants looking to meet new friends and tour the Depot District’s repertoire of taverns and restaurants. Each venue displayed a handmade mini-golf green to challenge the event’s spirited crowds. 37
One persons junk is another’s treasure at the annual Depot District Clean Sweep Garage Sale. Residents browsed 5 stories of good finds and left knowing that they lived the spirit of the word “recycle.”
Depot District Clean Sweep Garage Sale Foodies of all ages enjoyed this annual tradition with an eclectic mix of small plates and sweets from Cermak Road restaurants!
Taste of Main Street 38
The 26th Annual WeatherTech® Berwyn Rt66 Car Show, sponsored by Paisans Pizzeria & Bar, was held on Ogden Avenue in Berwyn. Berwyn has always been a great Route 66 town with a thriving, dynamic and fast-growing community at its heart. The Route 66 Car Show is the area’s best and biggest car show, attracting more than 30,000 visitors.
Roosevelt Road Zombie Walk & Pub Crawl
Berwyn Rt. 66 Car Show September means Oktoberfest in Berwyn! The event’s mid-September kick-off coincided with the original Munich Oktoberfest. The event boasted live music, an international food court, carnival and amusement rides, family entertainment pavilion, crafters and vendors. And let’s not forget the Beer Garden, which featured special Oktoberfest seasonal selections!
Oktoberfest The dead rose once more to feed their instincts for a cult-classic zombie fest at the 7th Annual Roosevelt Road Zombie Walk & Pub Crawl. The event featured zombie make-up, a pub crawl and feeding frenzy designed to rival even your fondest memories of Thriller.
BERWYN’S BEST COFFEE Winner: Avito Caffe Specialty: Café Nutella Finalists: Friendly Coffee Lounge and Mission House Cafe
BERWYN’S BEST BURGER
Winner: Cigars & Stripes BBQ Lounge Specialty: Backyard Burger Finalists: Big Guys Sausage Stand, Bubba & Bobby’s Beef, Culver’s and Paisans Pizzeria & Bar
BERWYN’S BEST COCKTAIL The BDC coordinated three Berwyn’s Best competitions in 2016
Winner: Lavergne’s Tavern Specialty: Cucumber Mojito Finalists: Godson’s Bar & Lounge, The James Joyce Irish Pub, Olive or Twist Martini Bar and P Lounge
BERWYN MAGAZINE & HOT DEALS
COMMUNITY RESOURCE GUIDE
Berwyn Magazine is a quarterly publication that is mailed to all Berwyn households and businesses in English with an additional mailing of the Spanish edition to the city’s Spanish preferred households. The magazine includes “Hot Deals” discount coupons and ads reserved for members only.
Our new annual community resource guide is designed to orient new residents and provide a reference to established locals looking for something new to do in the city. This guide is an extended edition of Berwyn Magazine Issue 2. This publication is completed in partnership with the Wednesday Journal.
BERWYN.NET The BDCâ€™s organizational website is better than ever! Now including a member portal, Berwyn.net allows BDC members to perform a slew of helpful tasks, such as post job openings, RSVP to BDC events and more. Log on to the member portal to access your tools now! 42
BUY BERWYN The Buy Berwyn/Compre en Berwyn shop local program was branded on numerous media including bilingual window signs, the BDC membership window decal and City of Berwynâ€™s vehicle stickers. Keep watch for signs at your favorite Berwyn store!
SOCIAL MEDIA & E-BLASTS
SOCIAL MEDIA SPOTLIGHTS
The BDC can be found via social media on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and LinkedIn. We also created a branded geo-filter on Snapchat. On these platforms, we spread a myriad of news from grand opening coverage to business features to social media spotlights. News also circulates through our topic-specific e-blasts.
A unique benefit for members at Tiers 3 and up, Social Media Spotlights use original storytelling to tell the Berwyn community about you and your business through our WhyBerwyn.com blog and social media platforms.
S U H O
T A T U P D A T O M E W N E
S E – R
Nothing like a suburb.
Nothing like a suburb.
For the past 10 years, the BDC has partnered with the City of Berwyn to position our community as a top choice destination for first time and move-up homebuyers as well as business entrepreneurs and visitors. The objective is to create a driving desire in our audience to visit and live in Berwyn. The “Nothing Like a Suburb ” campaign is tied directly to WhyBerwyn.com and our social media. The campaign also includes an annual installation of outdoor advertising, digital marketing campaigns and direct outreach at Northalsted Market Days.
We believe that Berwyn cannot be blended into suburbia because it is a thriving, self-made city defined by our local pride, accessible nightlife and warm, welcoming attitude.
CBS2Chicago visited Berwyn on June 20, 2016 to learn more about our marketing campaign, which is best known for billboards around the City of Chicago and on CTA platforms. Marissa Bailey interviewed Mayor Robert Lovero and resident Scott Lennon to find out why we are “Nothing Like A Suburb.” She found that we have all of the qualities of a top choice destination — convenient location, remarkable housing
CBS 2 Highlights Berwyn’s Billboards on Evening News stock, thriving independent business base and welcoming attitude — the hallmarks of a “go-to” neighborhood! 45
+33% to 3,662
Investment in a social media plan has grown our audience and cultivated a local promotional tool that we are able to effectively share with our members.
A new membership benefit! This social media feature is structured to let our audience hear the stories of our local entrepreneurs, creatives and next generation. We share their stories with our Facebook, Twitter and Instagram audiences. Twelve were completed in 2016!
FACEBOOK is the strongest audience base. Key statistics from this year:
+111% to 8,093 likes
Members Only Facebook Group
+33% to 1,179 followers
+143% to 1,146 followers
AVERAGE POST REACH
TOP POST REACH THIS YEAR
AVERAGE REACTIONS, COMMENTS & SHARES
AVERAGE POST CLICKS
TOP POST CLICKS
data as of Nov. 30, 2016
Total Members After the BDC rolled out the new membership tiers, 142 upgrades were processed
data as of Nov. 30, 2016
data as of Nov. 30, 2016
OUT OF NEARLY 128,496 PAGEVIEWS
41 % 33 %
OUR SOCIAL MEDIA SITES SOARED TO NEW HEIGHTS IN 2016
(+3971 since 2015)
(+307 since 2015)
(+683 since 2015)
55 85 %
OF WHYBERWYN.COM VISITORS ARE NEW 48
NEW VISITORS ON % OFWHYBERWYN.COM COME FROM OUR SOCIAL MEDIA SITES
A MAJORITY OF VISITS TO OUR SOCIAL MEDIA SITES ARE MADE VIA THE
Our strategic plan is a five-year initiative to increase our capacity to serve Berwyn businesses, promote our strengths and significantly improve the economic future for all who call Berwyn home. Our plan will focus on the following priorities:
Increase the capacity of the Chamber Services Division to serve Berwyn businesses more effectively.
PROMOTE OUR MEMBERS: INVESTOR
Give our members a competitive edge in the market.
DEVELOP LEADERSHIP FOR BERWYN: Develop the next generation of community and business leaders.
Two of the strategies prioritized in the plan were a review of all existing programs and services and the creation of a Tiered Benefits membership dues model. Since inception, the BDC’s membership was based on a fair-share dues structure, which provided a single package of benefits with cost based on the business’s number of employees. A new and improved menu of programs and benefits are now packaged into six high-impact membership tiers that better serve our businesses’ needs. The tiers officially rolled out in January of 2016!
GROW SMALL BUSINESSES: TRUSTEE
Provide education, support and resources to help emerging business members. 49
Over the course of 8 years, Berwynâ€™s total retail sales volume increased by $11,816,864.25
In 2016, 287 building permits were issued, which resulted in $ 7.6 million in total investment within the commercial corridors
$ all data as of Nov. 30, 2016