Downtown beautification reached new heights this summer in West Chicago. The City purchased 10 new decorative planters which have been placed at strategic locations for enhancement of the downtown streetscape.
Additionally, City crews prepared plant beds throughout the downtown to ensure a fertile foundation for the plant material purchased through WeGrow Dreams in West Chicago. The not for profit greenhouse provides people with disabilities the opportunity to lead fulfilling lives through training and working in the supportive, safe and caring environment of the greenhouse. Executive Director Gregg Bettcher assisted with the selection, layout and planting of the large assortment of perenniels and annuals chosen.
Reaction from business owners and residents who flocked to the downtown last Saturday to attend Blooming Fest, was overwhelmingly positive. “The economic benefits of landscaping are well documented, not to mention the importantance of the image of our downtown, which reflects the perceived health of the overall community,” said Marketing and Communications Coordinator Rosemary Mackey. “We hope our residents, businesses and those that visit will find our downtown landscape provides a welcoming and delightful setting for gathering with friends, shopping, dining or simply strolling.”
The project required the help of many, including the hardworking young people of Boy Scout Troop 33 who once again volunteered to plant the beds throughout the downtown. Troop 33’s involvement has become something of a tradition for the past several years. Troop leader Steve Usedom volunteers on the Blooming Fest committee and is always quick to offer help to the City, whether it be providing the opening flag ceremony at City events or helping with downtown beautification efforts.
“It was definitely a community effort,” according to John Said, the City’s Director of Community Development, who assisted with the project from inception to completion. “I was out on Main Street with the Scouts as they were planting, and they did an excellent job. Their hard work and dedication was very impressive, and those efforts resulted in an even better-looking downtown area.”