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June 2011 • Freeport, IL

Titan Tire Adds Staff – Increased Production Tony Carton Communicator Editor The sun is shining a little brighter over the Titan Tire plant in Freeport since those darker days last winter when Freeport and especially the families of some 500 locked out employees who were manning picket lines at the facility closely followed the contract negotiations between Titan Tire and the United Steelworkers (USW) while awaiting news with baited breath and guarded purse strings. The gravity of those negotiations and the possibility of losing one of Freeport’s larger employers stayed high on the trending topic list of many area families for months and remains a concern today, but in response to an upswing in product demand the company announced that it will hold a job fair from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Tuesday June 14, Wednesday June 15 and Thursday June 16 to facilitate the hiring of several dozen new full time employees and to build prospective employee lists for future use. “Right now, we are operating under an unsigned contract, so there is still an issue if you will,” said Titan Plant Manager Steve Strauss. “They were locked out for a brief portion and then they

were offered to come back to work under the new contract and so they did. The only issue is that it is unsigned.” Strauss said that the company has exhausted all internal hiring lists and will be interviewing applicants for three days for immediate hire. “We will probably hire more than 20 new employees straight from the fair,” Strauss said. “We

slightly over 500 salaried employees and about 80 salaried employees. “Right now we are looking to specifically add hourly employees,” he said. “We have 580 plus employees and we are looking to increase that going forward.” Strauss added that the company never stopped operating a three-shift

know that in the current economy that is good news for the Winnebago, Ogle, Stephenson and Jo Daviess County area.” Strauss said demand for agricultural products is driving the need for increased production at the plant. “We make radial and bias farm tires, front farm tires and ATV tires,” Strauss said. “Everything that we make here is agricultural based and is experiencing increasing demand.” Strauss said the Titan plant in Freeport currently employs

production schedule and said the new hires will augment all three shifts. He said that with unemployment figures hovering in the double digit range this effort at expanded production and new hiring would benefit the entire tri-state area. “I know Winnebago and Ogle counties are in double digit employment and these are good paying jobs,” Strauss said. “Our job advertisement will go right down to say the lowest pay scale is $13.97. There are different job classifications and in actuality, the majority of people

that will be hired in will be a pay-grade 3 which starts at seventeen bucks.” He said their priority is getting product to their customers and to accomplish that Titan is working overtime now and will continue to do so. Strauss also listed dental, health, short and long-term disability, flexible spending plans, supplemental life insurance and safety shoe reimbursement among the benefits available to all Titan employees. “The Titan facility has been a part of the Freeport community for many years and this is the first time in over ten years that we’ve found ourselves needing to hire new people right off the street,” said Strauss. “I think that is just great for the community, especially in the economy today.” Freeport Mayor George Gaulrapp said he has been in constant contact with union officials and representatives of Titan Tire throughout the last year’s contract negotiations and this year’s increased production schedule. Gaulrapp said the announcement of new hires is great news for Freeport. “Titan Tire is a very important part of Freeport IL,” said Gaulrapp. “We saw SEE TITAN










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FREEPORT AREA CHAMBER OF COMMERCE 27 W. Stephenson St, Freeport IL 61032 Phone: 815.233.1350 Fax: 815.235.4038 EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR: Kim Grimes


RECEPTIONIST: Julie Huber COMMUNICATION EDITOR: Tony Carton The Chamber of Commerce Communicator is published on a monthly basis with the partnership of The Journal-Standard paper. We thank them for their continual effort to keep this publication in print!

DATES TO REMEMBER... JUNE 16 Business after Hours Oakley Courts Assisted Living 5:00 – 7:00 p.m. JUNE 21 Chamber Board Meeting Chamber Conference Room # 1 7:30 a.m. JUNE 23 Chamber Ambassador Meeting Stephenson County Farm Bureau 7:30 a.m. JUNE 23 Chamber Open House CHamber Office 5:00 – 7:00 p.m. JULY 5 Executive Board Meeting Chamber Conference Room #1 7:30 a.m. JULY 6 Rise ’N Shine Breakfast Freeport Rehabilitation & Health Care Center 7:30 - 8:30 a.m.

Kim’s Korner W

e are very excited to be celebrating your Chamber’s 110th Anniversary this month. As we prepared for our Lead Story in last month’s Communicator it was fun going back in time to read about how your Chamber was evolved. (I want to thank the ladies at our beautiful Freeport Public Libarary for helping me dig up some wonderful old articles about the Chamber). Your Chamber Board and staff greatly appreciate the hard work of those former business leaders who were responsible for forming the original Chamber and we are inspired to keep their legacy alive by making sure our community and our Chamber members constantly receive the value they deserve . We look forward to talking to many other businesses this week and next during our membership drive and hope to see many of you as we celebrate our anniversary with an Open House June 23rd from 5-7 p.m. If you have never visited our office this would be an excellent time to stop by and say hello . With the great news coming from Titan Tire about their Job Fair going

on this week it’s very encouraging to hear about some of our local businesses and industries doing some extra hiring. With that good news and the ongoing plans developing for a Community Strategic Plan to be put in place I am excited about the continued momentum taking place here in the Freeport area. On behalf of your Chamber our staff and Board of Directors will be very engaged with this Community’s Strategic Plan process and we feel confident that with the expertise and support of our government and business leaders we can make a positive influence in adopting a direction that the Freeport area will have in place for the coming years. Thank you to the Park Hills Golf Course staff for hosting last month’s Business After Hours and we look forward to tonite’s Business After Hours at Oakley Courts. SHOP



Allen’s Menswear Auto Repair Specialists • Bocker Group Book World • Brown’s Shoes Captured Memories Photography Cellular Connection • Cimino’s Little Italy Culligan Water Conditioning • Deininger’s Floral Shop Diamond Dave’s Mexican Restaurant • Eilert’s • Fitness Nutrition Flachtemeier Monuments • Flack Sewing • Floor to Ceiling Store Four Seasons/Freeport Lanes, Inc. • Freeport Shopping News Furst McNess Co. • Freeport Glass Co. • Freeport Lawn & Leisure Happy Joe’s Café • Higher Grounds Coffee • Hillside Studio Imperial Palace • Iron-T Junction • Jiffy Lube • Joe’s Pizza • Kent Bank Kurt Koester Studio • L.P. Scientific • Lindo Theater/Classic Cinemas Loescher Heating & A/C • Luecke Jewelers • Maurices Merle Norman Cosmetics • Ross Auto Glass Rite-Way Furniture & Appliance • Sanitary Cleaners • Skate Station Slumberland Furniture • Soundwerks Plus • State Bank Stone’s Hallmark • The Bargain Box • Town House Motel Wagner Business • Whole Body Studio

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Business After Hours was hosted by the Freeport Park District at Park Hills Golf Course. A great group of people attended to network and enjoy the great food and beautiful view. Our thanks to Park Hills for their hospitality to the Chamber family.


Wiffle Ball Freeport Area Chamber of Commerce 4th Annual WIFFLE® Ball Invasion The Freeport Area Chamber of Commerce (FACC) is accepting registration for teams to participate in its annual WIFFLE® Ball Invasion tourney on the diamonds in Read Park on August 6 and 7, 2011. Featuring highly competitive, but recreational teams, each with 4 to 10 members, the invasion promises to be a blast of summer fun. “This is always a fun Chamber fund-raising event,” FACC Executive Director Kim Grimes said. “We're in our fourth year with the tourney and it's looking bigger and better than ever. It's a great opportunity for local players to show off their WIFFLE® Ball talents and have a chance to hit a home-run a Little Cubs Field.” Register now and mark your calendar for Saturday, August 6 and Sunday, August 7, 2011 (if

play needed) starting at 8:00 a.m. Cash prizes of $200 for 1st place and $100 for 2nd place will be awarded. There is also a $50 cash prize for the Home Run Derby. Food and beverages will be available. Alcohol is prohibited. For lodging information, call Freeport/Stephenson County Convention Visitor's Bureau at 800-369-2955. Hotel rates discounted for out-of-town guests. Here's where to find out more: Phone: 815-233-1350 Fax: 815235-4038 Email: freeportareachamber@freeportilc or download a registration form from the FACC Website at

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MEMBERnews • Certificate of Employability Success Within Stephenson County The Certificate of Employability (COE) program was introduced at Freeport High School in the winter of the 2009/2010 school year. All high schools in Stephenson County subsequently introduced the COE program for the 2010/2011 school year. The Workforce Development Coalition (WDC), a partnership between employers, NIDA, the Chamber of Commerce, high schools and Highland Community College, have collaborated to ensure our high school graduates are prepared to meet workplace expectations. The good news is that strong progress is being made. During the recent senior convocations the common element within all high schools was recognition of graduates who earned the COE. Last year 34 graduates earned the COE. This year the number of

graduates who are recipients of the COE totals 153.The breakdown by school is: Aquin High School - 1 Dakota High School - 17 Freeport High School - 74 Lena-Winslow High School - 38 Orangeville High School - 13 Pearl City High School - 10 We all should be proud of our Stephenson County high schools and graduates who have worked hard to accomplish these outstanding results. The criteria required to earn the COE includes more than academics. The other key factors are attendance and attitude. These are vital soft skills expected and required within the workplace. The combination of academics, attendance, and positive attitude results in a job

candidate who is highly desired in the workplace. For those of you looking for capable and reliable employees, please give strong consideration to interview graduates who have earned the COE. You will find in this issue of the Communicator a complete listing of all Stephenson County graduates who are COE recipients. The Workforce Development Coalition looks forward to continued success during the 2011/2012 school year as schools within Carroll and JoDaviess Counties have expressed interest to include the Certificate of Employability program within their curriculum. Members of the WDC are eager and willing to explain the program to any area schools and provide additional information on the COE to any employer. A list of WDC Steering Council members is available by contacting Sally Brandt at 815-275-6862 or • Critter Camp Coming to Visitors Center The Freeport/Stephenson County Visitors Center will be

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visited by German Valley’s Critter Camp on Friday, June 17, between 2 p.m. and 6 p.m. Camp owner Beth Randall will be sharing information about Critter Camp and bringing a few unusual pets for visitors to meet. Critter Camp Exotic Pet Sanctuary provides a safe, healthy, happy forever home to over 300 abandoned, abused and other wise homeless small exotic and unusual pets of 36 different species. It is the only exotic pet sanctuary of its kind in the U.S.

Critter Camp is located in German Valley, just a few miles south of Route 20 and is open by appointment only. Hands-on educational tours of Critter Camp are available for a small donation. Additional information about Critter Camp is available at Critter Camp is currently CONTINUED


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2011 PREFERRED MEMBERS We would like to give special recognition to the following businesses that provide extra support to the Freeport Area Chamber of Commerce.


Law Offices of Ralph E. Elliott Alwayz Cookies Rock River Valley Blood Center Rite-Way Furniture & Appliance Berner Food & Beverage Reid Enterprises John H. Vogt Fishburn, Whiton, Thruman, LTD Fehr-Graham & Associates Freeport Community Foundation Country Insurance & Financial Bomar Heating & Cooling Services -Rick Wilson Stout Insurance Agency Spherion Staffing Group Freidag Associates CPAs Freeport Insurance Center Chapel Hill Memorial Gardens Jack Myers Consulting

SILVER MEMBERS Iron-T Junction Brown’s Shoes

Integrity Investments Swift Hospitality Group, Inc. Columbia College Winter & Associates Ultrasonic Power Corp. Freeport Park District Eagles Club Pinewood Buffet & Grill Monroe Clinic LeBaron & Miller Interiors Winter Construction Inc.

BRONZE MEMBERS Fruth-Simmer Insurance Agency Freeport Flite Center Twice As Nice Consignments Floor Covering Plus Hulsebus-Gehlsen Chiropractic Maybe You Need Help... Culligan Water Conditioning Union Savings Bank

Bill George Plumbing & Heating AquaLand Baymont Inn and Suites Dental Connections Family Health Quest Newby Design Works Citizens State Bank Farmers Insurance Group-Lynn Kempel

QBE Regional Insurance Schofield Plumbing State Farm Insurance – Jon Spachman C. J. Vitner Co., Inc. Saxer Accounting Services, LLC Tender Loving Care State Farm Insurance – Steve Johnson

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participating in the Pepsi Refresh Project to win $50,000 in order to be one step closer to a permanent facility in Stephenson County. The Visitors Center will provide a laptop during event hours to encourage all visitors and locals to vote online. The Visitors Center, located at 4596 US Highway 20 east of Freeport, is open daily from 8 am to 7 p.m. Funded by private donations, the Center is designed to promote economic growth in Freeport and Stephenson County. Further information may be obtained by contacting the Visitors Center at 815-233-1357. • New CFP® Campaign Helps Clear Up Confusion Following the decline in the economy and an increase in the discovery of “Ponzi” schemes, many people are finding it difficult to put their trust in some people in the financial services industry. Many individuals know they need help in meeting their financial goals, but they don’t know who they can trust.

FREEPORT AREA CHAMBER OF COMMERCE The Certified Financial Planner (CFP®) Board of Directors has launched a new campaign to help the public understand the important role CFP® professionals play in educating Americans on their financial well-being and helping people meet their life goals. The campaign will help provide clarity to consumers who are looking toward designations and certifications to provide guidance on choosing a financial planner or advisor.

The new campaign called, “Let’s Make a Plan,” includes national television, online, and print advertising promotions. A public service website - will serve as a core feature of the campaign, where consumers can learn about financial planning, the personalized approach CFP®

professionals provide, and find a local CFP® professional through a search function. The CFP® certification is a meaningful professional credential that continues to evolve and be strengthened by new education, ethics and examination requirements. There are now more than 63,000 CFP® professionals in the United States, but according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, there are more than 149,000 “personal financial advisors.” It’s no doubt consumers are confused about where to turn for help. The CFP® mark truly serves as the ‘gold standard’ for personal financial planning. Just about anyone can use the term ‘financial planner,’ but only those individuals who have passed a rigorous set of criteria and meet the strict ethical qualifications can call themselves a CFP® professional. Unlike many financial advisers, CFP® professionals must develop their theoretical and practical knowledge by completing a comprehensive course of study at a college or university offering a financial planning curriculum approved by the CFP® Board. CFP® professionals must pass the comprehensive CFP® Certification Exam, which tests their ability to apply financial planning knowledge to real-life situations. The exam covers the financial planning process, tax planning, employee benefits and retirement planning, estate planning, investment management and insurance. The test is a tough one, too. The average pass rate for this difficult exam is only 56%. This comprehensive exam ensures

that Certified Financial Planner™ professionals are highly qualified to successfully develop a plan for your finances. Submitted by: By Wendy Blair, CFP®, ChFC®, Financial Advisor, Savant Capital Management • VOICES Book Nook celebrates second anniversary VOICES Book Nook will hold a “Book Drop” on Tuesday, June 28 from 4-7 p.m. Donors can bring new and gently used books - hard or soft cover - to the parking lot of Freeport Lincoln, 1265 West Galena, Freeport, IL

Volunteers will greet donors at their cars, unload the books, and provide a receipt. VOICES Book Nook will celebrate its second anniversary as a retail used book store on Thursday, June 30. It was two years ago on that date that VOICES opened its used book store in the Freeport Lincoln Mall. “Our success is due to the countless hours devoted to VOICES Book Nook CONTINUED







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Ribboncutting The Chamber cut the ribbon at Aubri’s Market located at 802 S. Adams. Stop in and see them for all of your convience needs.

MEMBERspotlights Newby Design Works Newby Design Works is committed to the needs of its customers and for more than five years, Newby Design Works has been helping customers create the kitchen of their dreams. You can count on Newby Design Works to deliver the finest quality

cabinetry at affordable prices. “I do book shelving, kitchen and bath cabinets and installation,” said Newby Design Works owner Doug Newby. “I also do remodeling, but cabinetry is my specialty.” Newby said he had been working for another cabinet contractor for nearly 20 years when he decided to open his own custom cabinetry business in the Freeport area in 2005. “I’m a one stop shopper, so I do all the ordering, the design work, the trim and millwork myself,” he said. “I’m working on a couple fairly large projects right now and I do a lot of insurance

work too.” He said he works with a number of area insurance adjusters who call him for remodels, repairs and replacements. “Most of the insurance work involves fire or water damage, but I have a good reputation for quality work and they keep me busy,” he said. He said his priorities lie with quality rather than quantity, so his business relies on referrals for expansion. “You know, when a customer thinks enough of your work to tell a friend or neighbor you must be doing something right,” he said. “I find myself working closer to my home in Freeport these days and that works very well for me.” He said quality craftsmanship coupled with the highest quality materials is the key to success in the cabinetry business. “I have a keen eye for detail and folks appreciate that,” Newby said. “They can come to me and I can basically do everything from start to finish. That removes the need for them to hunt around for a bunch of different contractors and craftsmen when they need a job done and done right.”

Learn more about the full range of custom cabinetry and remodeling services available from Newby Design Works by calling Doug at 815.238.7162. Eric Weiand Design Eric Weiand Design is the creative outlet of freelance designer Eric Weiand. Weiand received a Bachelors of Art from Northern Illinois University where he discovered a love for digital media and design. His company specializes in web design, front-end development, SEO, print design, identity design, email marketing design and PowerPoint presentation design. His more that 8 years of experience have honed skills including design visualization, HTML, CSS, Photoshop, Dreamweaver, Flash and PowerPoint. “I mostly work on web design,” Weiand said. “I’m one of only a few web designers in the area.” Weiand said that when he finished college he first worked with American Marketing and Publishing for four years as print designer before signing on as Junior Web Designer with The Swiss Colony until 2008. He then undertook three years with Design Mill Inc as Web Designer before making the decision to start his own design firm. “I’m currently working on a couple graphic design projects

and building a couple web sites including one for Auto Repair Specialists,” he said. “I specialize in small businesses and informational web sites.” Weiand said he is working to bring Freeport area businesses online. “I’m doing updated and modern websites and I’m working to help our businesses enter the email marketing field,” he said. He added that utilizing updated technologies is the key to success for online business. “I am spending more time helping my clients develop their Search Engine Optimization (SEO) so that when they do post a product online folks looking for that product can find them quickly,” he said. “It is tricky and changes almost every day, but if you are going to succeed online you need to stay ahead of the pack and strong SEO is a must.” Learn more about what Eric Weiand Design can do for your business. Contact Eric at or visit online at Snail mail to PO Box 242 Freeport, IL 61032 or call 815.821.2871. MORE MEMBER SPOTLIGHTS ON PAGE


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by our volunteers,â€? said Laurie Gungel, Book Nook Manager. “They are awesome!â€? VOICES Executive Director Anita Rumage said financial support garnered through the book sales is vital to her organization. “Our mission is to provide advocacy and support to all victims of domestic violence in Stephenson County,â€? said Rumage. “The continued purchases by our friends and neighbors throughout our region enable VOICES to continue to serve its clients, even in these times of unstable government funding.â€? Patrons are invited to stop by the Store on Thursday, June 30 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. for light refreshments. For more information, please call 815-821-BOOK (821-2665). All profits from VOICES Book Nook support VOICES Domestic Violence programs. • MONROE CLINIC APPOINTS VICE PRESIDENT OF SERVICE EXCELLENCE Cindy Werkheiser focuses on process improvement and exceptional experiences.

Monroe Clinic is pleased to announce Cindy Werkheiser was promoted to vice president of service excellence. In her position, she guides strategic initiatives in service excellence and process improvement throughout the organization. The new position is a reflection of growing emphasis on process improvement at Monroe Clinic, an effort that enhances efficiency, quality and the overall patient experience.

“A better process means a better patient experience,� Werkheiser said. “We observe and evaluate processes to eliminate the steps that do not add value to the patient’s experience. For example, by streamlining the pre-admission processes, patients no longer travel from one department to another and they can choose a time most convenient for them.� This appointment is an expansion of her previous work as director of process improvement, a position she began in 2007. In her new role, Werkheiser will oversee patient and guest satisfaction, “first impression� services, such as registration, switchboard, concierge, valet and retail operations including nutrition services, gift shop and retail pharmacy. Before joining Monroe Clinic’s management team, Werkheiser worked in the banking industry for 23 years and served on Monroe Clinic’s Board of Directors.


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An active volunteer in Stephenson County, Werkheiser has served as campaign chair and Board President of United Way of Northwest Illinois and is currently serving as a board member. She has also participated in fundraising efforts for March of Dimes, Red Cross and Relay for Life. She and her husband, Jeff, reside in Freeport, Ill • Highland Community College to Honor GED Completers Highland Community College’s 38th Annual General Education Development (GED) Recognition Ceremony honoring the 2010-2011 GED completers will be held on Wednesday, June 22nd in the HCC Student/Conference Center (Building H), at 7:30 p.m. Students who have completed the requirements for the General Education Development certificate as part of Highland’s Adult Education program will be invited, along with their friends and families, to participate in the

celebration of the students’ accomplishment. The public is also invited to attend this ceremony. Highland President, Dr. Joe Kanosky, and Vice-President of Academic Services, Mr. Tim Hood, will be present to give remarks. Director of Adult Education, Mark Jansen, will present the certificates to the completers. Also in attendance will be Aaron Mercier and Amy Jo Clemens, Regional Superintendents of Carroll/Jo Daviess/Stephenson Counties, and Lee/Ogle Counties, respectively. Staff and instructors of the Adult Education program, along with volunteers from the Adult Volunteer Literacy program, will be on hand to help facilitate the event. It is anticipated that approximately 70 students have completed their GED requirements during the past year and many will be honored at the Recognition Ceremony. One of the highlights of the evening features a series of CONTINUED





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student speakers who have participated in the Adult Education program and received their GED. The speakers will relate some of their experiences and describe what this accomplishment means to each of them. For additional information about Highland Community College’s GED program, call the Adult Education Department at 815.599.3460. • Dinner and a Little Golf Come Support Monroe Clinic Hospice on June 28 The New Glarus Hotel and Chalet Landhaus invite the public to support Monroe Clinic Hospice at the annual dinner and mini-golf event on Tuesday, June 28. Come enjoy an evening of entertainment with a little golf and dinner! The donation of $75 includes a round of miniature golf from 5 - 6:30 p.m. and an

exquisite dinner at the New Glarus Hotel Restaurant at 7 p.m. A silent and live auction will also take place during the dinner. Register by June 24 by calling 608-324-2868 or go to and click on the events button at the bottom of the screen. About Hospice Monroe Clinic’s hospice community programs depend upon support from the communities they serve. Hospice care focuses on helping the terminally ill patient find dignity and comfort while supporting the family during the grieving process. Individual plans designed around the needs and priorities of the patient and family help identify the best ways to offer care. Monroe Clinic hospice is available in Green, Rock, and Lafayette counties in Wisconsin and Stephenson, Jo Daviess, and Winnebago counties in Illinois. Services are covered by

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Medicare, Medicaid and private insurers. No one is refused services on ability to pay. • A Decade of Success for M45 Marketing Services M45 Marketing Services is celebrating its 10th birthday this June. Founded in 2001 by former Honeywell marketing and communications executives Marilyn Smit and Joe Vaske, the agency has grown over the past decade to include 13 full-time employees and 6 permanent part-time employees at two locations in Freeport and Bloomington, Ill. M45 Marketing Services is a full-service marketing agency offering services from advertising, branding and identity, research, sales promotion and technical documentation to event planning, employee communications, public relations and web development. The company has clients in the technology, manufacturing, health care, alternative energy, tourism, financial services, consumer products, non-profit fundraising and construction

industries. In the past decade, M45 has completed more than 11,000 projects for more than 190 companies ranging in size from multinational corporations to start-ups. In Northwest Illinois, the company played a large part in the 2009Extreme Makeover: Home Edition project in Lena, creating a website in just four days, managing all local press and coordinating many volunteer activities for the event. The Freeport Area Chamber of Commerce named M45 Marketing Services the 2010 Small Business of the Year for its excellent service and participation in numerous volunteer efforts and civicminded activities. “We chose the company name to demonstrate how we feel about our employees,” said M45 CONTINUED




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FREEPORT AREA CHAMBER OF COMMERCE co-founder Joe Vaske. “M45 is the scientific descriptor for the Pleiades constellation, which is the brightest constellation you can see from earth. We take pride in shining brightly for our clients and in living the sentiment in our tagline, which is stellar ideas, down-toearth solutions.” M45 and its employees have been recognized every year by the United Way of Northwest Illinois for participation in the Annual Day of Caring and were named the Outstanding Volunteer Group for 2008-2009 by Malcolm Eaton Enterprises. “Our employees really care for their communities,” says M45 co-founder Marilyn Smit. “From participating in food drives and putting together care packages for military personnel or Haitian

earthquake victims to helping out with painting, weeding or planting for every United Way Day of Caring, the M45 family gives their all not only to their clients but to their communities.” For more information about M45 Marketing Services, visit or call 815-2322121. • The Baymont Inn and Suites The Baymont Inn and Suites is making it easy for folks to enjoy the Stephenson County Fair July 11 through July 14 with special room prices and access to all the Baymont amenities.

Relax in a Standard one or two bed room with TV, refrigerator and microwave when you take advantage of their County Fair special and remember, the pool is open for a quick dip after a hot day on the midway. Call the Baymont Inn and Suites at (815) 599-8510 for prices and availability. The Baymont Inn and Suites is located at the Hwy 26 North exit on Hwy 20.

TITAN from page 1

Pinnacle Metals put $2 million into their Freeport facility, then Berner Foods which is not in Freeport, but maybe 70 percent of their employees are from Freeport, expanded their operations and their employment levels are up. Sauer-Danfoss hired back about 140 people. Vitners is doing some great things. Now with Titan doing well, things are improving for Freeport.” He added that Freeport has a number of companies that have positioned themselves well and by cutting costs early are now able to benefit. “It is the same with the City of Freeport,” Gaulrapp said. “We were able to cut costs last year and now we have a budget surplus of 1.5 million dollars, so we went from having to borrow money to being very stable financially and that is what corporations and developers look at when they look for a city to come to.” Freeport Area Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Kim Grimes said it is always exciting when a long time

Freeport employer like Titan Tire experiences the need to add jobs. “This is a real morale booster for the whole community,” said Grimes. “These are good paying jobs and in light of the sacrifices this area has made over the last few years, this is a real shot in the arm.” Grimes said that Freeport has a long standing reputation as a great place to raise a family and jobs that carry good benefits and decent pay support that status. “Benefits are an important aspect of any job and the package offered at Titan Tire is just an added plus,” Grimes said. He added that good paying jobs have a ripple effect that benefits the entire community. “When folks take home a paycheck, that money is typically spent at least seven times in a community,” Grimes said. “These jobs not only help the individuals, but they support the whole region because those paychecks are invested and reinvested many times over throughout the community.”

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MEMBERspotlights A+ Automotive “We promise to never oversell our customers. We will always give an honest estimate of what work needs to be done.” From basic oil and battery changes to complete engine and transmission rebuilds, A+ Automotive Inc. of Freeport, Illinois guarantees to keep you on the road. A+ Automotive Inc. has been owned and operated by Mickey Monroe since 2007. Mickey has been in the automotive business for more than 30 years and taught automotive classes at a college level.

Fully staffed with ASE Certified mechanics, A+ gathers from over 75 years of combined automotive experience. They stand behind their work,

ensuring that it is done right the first time. A+ Automotive services and repairs all makes and models of vehicles. A+ technicians are well trained in the latest technology and diagnostic equipment. “We do everything auto related,” said A+ Service Manager Dan Monroe. “We can keep you on the road by properly maintaining your electrical, heating, brakes, alignment, exhaust systems and more.” He said they are doing more work lately with custom exhaust systems. “We have a custom bender and can fit any vehicle with the exhaust system needed to keep you on the road safely,” Monroe said. “We do a lot of pick-up trucks for both ag and performance.” A+ has just moved its operations to 1829 South West Avenue in Freeport. A+ offers free delivery and pick-up and can provide a

loaner when necessary. Monroe said their focus is preventive maintenance. “We like to take care of problems before they become major headaches,” he said. “We can track maintenance issues by a car’s mileage and we do safety inspections. We can use that information to make suggestions and go from there.” Monroe said growth is a goal with A+ Automotive. “We want to continue offering quality work at a quality price,” he said. “Integrity and honesty are very important to us. Serving our customers is always number one with us. When our customers are satisfied we are satisfied.” A+ Automotive builds relationships with their clients and their vehicles. Their customers recognize the passion that they put into their work, and that is why folks keep coming back. Quality work in a timely and respectful manner is job one at A+. Contact Dan or Mickey at A+ Automotive for all your automotive maintenance needs. Call (815) 232-2499 or visit them at their new location at 1829 South West Avenue. Open 8-5 Monday through Friday. Bill Bear/Dimond Brothers Insurance Agency Dimond Bros. Insurance Agency specializes in providing personalized insurance coverage that meets the needs of families and businesses. Whether its homeowner’s insurance, auto

insurance, life or health insurance coverage, Dimond Bros. Insurance Agency has a plan for everyone. “We are a full service insurance agency with 20 locations throughout Illinois,” said Agency Manager/Vice President Mark Swanson. Swanson said Dimond Bros partnered with Bill Bear five years ago. “Bill was looking to retire then,” Swanson said. “Now he is completely retired and we took over the operation last month.” He said Dimond Bros is expanding their statewide operations and sees the Freeport

area as a real opportunity. “We are really working to reintroduce the community to our ability to write large commercial risks,” Swanson said. “It’s all part of our plan for continued growth. We are working to build good relationships with quality businesses.” Dimond Bros. has been providing security and peace of mind for individuals, business and government entities for over 130 years. As an independent insurance agency, they represent many fine companies in order to provide the best coverage at the most affordable price. Excellent products, competitive prices, and outstanding service have been the cornerstone of Dimond Bros’ business and the reason they have built and retained an extensive business. Swanson said Dimond Bros does business according to the Golden Rule. “We treat people the way they want to be treated,” he said. “We care about people’s businesses the way we care about our own and it is important to us to be active in the community.” Count on the Bill Bear/Dimond Bros Insurance Agency today and into the future. They work hard so that you can rest easy with protection from the Dimond Bros. Agency. For more information about the services available through the Bill Bear/Dimond Bros Insurance Agency at 815.235.7717 or stop by their offices at 660 W Stephenson St Freeport or visit them on the web at Donuts Delite Donuts Delite donuts have been described as the ultimate indulgence, purely heaven, tender and airy, sinfully good, fit for kings, and that’s just what Roger Wilson, husband of Donuts Delite’ chief cook and bottle washer Tammy WoodyattWilson’s has to say. Poll customers and you’ll hear things like large, plump and golden, pleasingly sweet on the somewhat crisp outside, then tender, moist and warm inside with enough of a buttery flavor

Page 13

FREEPORT AREA CHAMBER OF COMMERCE to make your mouth water in anticipation of the next bite. Need we say more? How about a second cup of coffee?

“I make donuts,” said Woodyatt-Wilson. “I make apple friters, powdered, sugared, bismarks filled with strawberry, blueberry, Bavarian crème; you can get cinnamon rolls, white frosted, maple frosted, chocolate frosted, glazed and apple cinnamon nut rolls and that’s just the beginning. We are donuts and we are coffee.” Woodyatt-Wilson said she makes everything from scratch right there in their building. “As far as I know we are the only place in town where donuts are made fresh from scratch,” she said. Woodyatt-Wilson said she and Roger took over the Donuts

Delite operation six years ago and the business had already been serving for eleven years when they bought it. “To be honest, I thought Roger wanted to buy it and he thought I wanted to buy it and now, we own a donut shop,” she said. “We’re just kind of goofy that way.” Laugh as the Wilsons do, they make a fine donut and the coffee is always fresh, hot and ready to go. “I don’t intend to do anything new with the business,” she said. “We love making the coffee and donuts and we love our customers.” And their customers love them. “Our customers are our friends,” Woodyatt-Wilson said. “In the course of the day, we have our farmers table, the union table, our Kelly table, our Microswitch table; we have people that come in before school and a bunch from Highland. We know our friends and we love what we do.” Stop in, meet Roger and Tammy and taste their wares. Donuts Delite serves a breakfast for two for $4 Monday through

ol cobreezes

Keep the

blowing this summer!

Friday 6am until 5pm and Saturdays 6:30am until noon. Donuts Delite is located in the Meadows Shopping Center at 1892 South West Avenue Freeport or call 815.233.1627. Lindo Theatre Downtown Freeport is home to the Lindo Theatre, a virtual time capsule that offers an affordable vacation every day of the week. Classic Cinemas Marketing Director Mark Mazrimas says the movie industry is experiencing a boom year and the Lindo is riding the crest of that boom. “The theatre has really grown,” Mazrimas said. “We offer folks more movie choices. We’ve brought the latest technology in

the industry to Freeport and we are pretty excited about that. You can escape to the movies and bring the family.” Mazrimas said the Lindo’s Wednesday Morning Movies series is another Classic project that is bringing people to Freeoport’s downtown. “We will be running movies on Wednesdays for a dollar at 10 am,” he said. “We’ll have games in the lobby and provide costumed characters. Folks get to see a PG rated movie for only a buck. You can’t beat that for value.” He added that the Wednesday Morning Movie promotion will run through August 10, 2011 and this year, the titles include Shrek Forever After, Despicable Me, Megamind, and a special surprise movie on August 10. Mazrimas said that attracting folks to downtown Freeport is a long term Lindo goal. “We are very happy to see businesses opening downtown where people can come and have dinner or a cocktail before or after a movie,” he said. “Our hope is to bring more people downtown and let them spend more time. Sometimes I’m

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Page 14 continued from page 13

surprised that there aren’t more businesses at the theatre meeting people and handing out coupons for maybe an ice cream or a kid’s meal. I’m just surprised that there isn’t more thinking along the lines of how the downtown Freeport businesses could take advantage of the crowd that is already downtown and at the Lindo.” He said that part of their strategy in building the ninescreen theatre was to offer movie choices and draw traffic to the downtown. “When we went to nine screens we gained the ability to play more of those great movies that are currently available and provide choices,” he said. “What we wanted to capture is that the best movies are all there in the Lindo and right in downtown Freeport.” Why not make your next event a Lindo event? Learn more about what is showing and when by visiting or call 815.233.0413 for movie titles and times.


New and Renewed

MEMBERS NEW: • Newby Design Works • Wall of Yarn • Imagine Promotions, Inc. • Tri-State Seamless Gutters • Dimond Bros/Bill Bear Insurance Agency • Computer Tutor • Eric Weiand Design • Unity Hospice of Western Illinois LLC • A+ Automotive • Donuts Delite • RENEWED: • Deininger’s Floral Shop • Culligan Water • Freeport Communications • Freeport Lanes, Inc. • O’Mara Moving & Storage • Adkins Energy, LLC • Midland States Bank • Swift Hospitality Group, Inc. • Walker Mortuary, Ltd. • Freeport Insurance • Midwest Dental • Big Radio • YMCA of Northwest Illinois • Rite-Way Furniture & Appliance • Bill George Heating & Plumbing • Highland Community College Alumni Association • Edward D. Jones Investments - Dan Retzke • Berner Food & Beverage • Jim Sacia - State Representative • Dr. Gary Besley • Monroe Publishing • Freeport Chapter Vietnow • New Millenium Directories • Mt. Cavalry C.O.G.I.C Union Dairy • Folgate Design • Jim Lee • Holland & Sons, Inc. • Neighborhood Housing Services of Freeport • Floor to Ceiling Store • Partners for Employment • Gitz-Meier Remodeling Contractors • Oakland Cemetary and Mausoleum • Bussian Insurance & Bussian Realtors • Crossroads Community Church • Jack Myers Consulting • Floor Covering Plus • Freeport Bicycle Company • Burke-Tubbs Funeral Home • Aero Group, Inc. • Proto-Cutter • Freeport Home Medical Equipment • Monroe Publishing • Freeport Community Foundation • Morse Electric, Inc. • Bill Leibman • Winneshiek Players, Inc. • Home Hardware • State Farm Insurance - Steve Johnson • Chiro-Works • LRB Distributors • Freeport Noon Kiwanis • Sojourn House • Davita



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June Freeport Chamber Communicator  
June Freeport Chamber Communicator  

Freeport Area Chamber of Commerce June, 2011 Communicator