The Evergreen Park Chamber of Commerce created a reusable canvas shopping tote to welcome new residents and businesses to the village this year. We worked with members Jim and Laurie Cleary of the Argus Company on the design, and then filled it with information and offers from member businesses.

Thanks to the following sponsoring businesses that made the welcome bags initiative possible:

Our Member Services Coordinator Kelley Moroney has already delivered the first batch of filled bags to new residents and businesses, with help from Evergreen Park Mayor Kelly Burke. We’re delighted to offer this service to welcome new families and business partners to our wonderful community!

Pictured Left to Right: Laura Shallow – EPCC Vice President, Matt Meierkort – Grinderz Training Academy,
Dave Torres – Grinderz Training Academy, Maria Cantu-Dougala – EPCC President 

Following are resources and news for business owners regarding COVID-19.

Village of Evergreen Park info

Local Restaurants Offering Takeout & Delivery Service

City of Chicago info

Updates from the Governor’s Office

Daily Updates from the Illinois Department of Public Health

U.S. Department of Labor Guidance

U.S. Chamber of Commerce Customizable Flyer for Businesses (shown below)—Download and customize this flyer to display in your workplace.

 

 

The Evergreen Park Chamber of Commerce has the perfect part-time job for an outgoing and organized person who loves to patronize local businesses. If you are a media-savvy professional interested in supporting our businesses, you could become our Member Services Coordinator.

Member Services Coordinator – Job Description

FLSA Status

Independent contractor. Not a paid employee; the contractor waives rights to regular employee benefits such as vacation, sick time, profit sharing, health benefits or any other benefits. Responsible for own income and employment taxes. Contractor will generally work from home; he/she will be reimbursed for office supplies but must use own equipment to perform duties. Submits invoice for payment on a bi-monthly basis.

Responsibilities

  • Acts as the link between Evergreen Park Chamber of Commerce (EPCC) members and the Chamber’s Board of Directors.
  • Works according to the policies, principles, procedures, and culture of the EPCC.
  • Carries out duties established by the Board through an annual schedule of implementation.
  • Presents a professional and positive image to members and the greater community through appropriate appearance, grooming, demeanor, and remarks.
  • Provides administrative support to ensure the efficient operation of the EPCC.

Specific Duties

  • Manage incoming and outgoing mail. Communicates effectively and regularly in person, by phone, by email and other electronic communications with the Chamber’s Board of Directors, members, vendors, and the public.
  • Maintain current list of Chamber membership.
  • Send annual dues renewal invoices.
  • Work with graphic design firm to publish annual directory and buyers’ guide.
  • Work with content marketing firm to maintain an effective communications program responsive to the needs of the membership, through print, online, and social media outlets.
  • Compile and assemble information for new member packets and send or delivers packets to prospective members.
  • Facilitate new memberships by developing leads, making cold calls, and actively seeking new members. Follow up appropriately.
  • Cultivate positive member relations and retention through personal contact.
  • Coordinate the planning, scheduling, marketing, promoting, and executing of special events and activities.
  • Coordinate registration for events.
  • Attend monthly Officers’ and Directors’ meetings.
  • Other duties as assigned.

Other Requirements

  • Ability to communicate effectively orally, in writing, and in group presentations.
  • Familiarity with Microsoft Office, Facebook, Gmail and Google Docs.
  • Experience with the WordPress content management system for basic website updates (or the motivation to learn and follow through).
  • Valid driver’s license.
  • Bachelor’s degree in a related discipline.

Evergreen Park’s new Humana neighborhood center in the new Plaza is a welcoming, bright, and versatile space. On a recent morning, it deftly transformed from a conference area where Chamber members enjoyed a breakfast buffet into an exercise space for an exercise class with local seniors. Humana is a health insurance company, but at their neighborhood centers, they also provide a variety of community programming for the public. 

The center, which opened last summer, recently hosted the Evergreen Park Chamber of Commerce for a networking breakfast and nutrition workshop called “Rate Your Plate.” Humana health educator Kristin Conrad shared best practices for healthful eating, along with helpful tips for avoiding pitfalls. Some of her key takeaways:

You should eat nine servings of fruits and veggies per week.

Fruit Facts

76% of Americans don’t eat enough fruit daily. Expense, availability, and shelf life are the main obstacles cited. Conrad suggested purchasing fresh produce when it’s in season, then freezing it to enjoy throughout the year. She said that women should aim for eating 1.5 cups of fruit per day, versus 2 cups for men.

Veggie Facts

87% of Americans don’t eat enough vegetables, even though they have the highest nutritional value of all foods. Women should eat 2 cups of vegetables per day; men, 2.5 cups. Conrad said that if you store veggies in plain sight, chances are you’ll eat them.

Whole Grains Facts

While Americans eat plenty of grains (in the form of bleached flour), most of us consume less than 1 serving of whole grains per day. Women should have 5 ounces of whole grains–oats, quinoa, brown rice, barley, whole wheat etc.—and men should consume 6 ounces per day.

Protein Facts

Men need just 5.5 ounces of protein each day, and women need just 5 ounces.

 

Healthy Eating Hacks

Avoid Portion Pitfalls—Measure your portions. Purchase a food scale to help keep you honest with your serving size. When you snack, don’t reach into a jar or bag for repeat handfuls, Instead, measure a single serving snack to enjoy. When you eat a full meal, consider using a 9-inch plate, which will help you resist the temptation to fill a larger plate.

Be a Smart Shopper—Plan a weekly menu and use it as a shopping guide. When you’re at the store, avoid the candy and sugary drinks aisles. Instead, start in the produce section. Also, don’t shop when you’re hungry.

Dine Out with Care—Restaurant portions can be huge! Be mindful of your regular portion size, and ask for a to-go container or share your meal. Another good tip is to eat your veggies first, to help fill you up. You can also ask for food to be prepared in a healthy manner and request sauces and dressings on the side.

Limit Added Sugar—Most of us eat far more sugar than our bodies need. The recommended daily allowance of sugar is 6 teaspoons for women and 9 teaspoons for men. The new food labels coming out in July will show added sugar, which will be helpful for those paying attention to their intake.

 

 

The annual Chamber Directory & Buyers’ Guide is in development, which means there’s still time to submit an ad! The Chamber mails the guides to 7,000 homes in the Evergreen Park area each year, reaching every resident.

Advertising in this handy guide is a terrific way to maximize your exposure in the community! The black & white ads are available in three sizes: 1/4 page for $125; 1/2 page for $275, and a full page for $400. In addition, there is one inside cover available for $525 in full color, and the outside back cover in full color is available for $650.


The Evergreen Park Chamber of Commerce welcomed new directors to its leadership and honored a longtime volunteer at its annual Holiday Luncheon on December 12.

Longtime resident and volunteer Virginia Wrobel was named Evergreen Park’s 2018 Citizen of the Year for her dedicated years of service in the community and especially for her work with senior citizens.

Wrobel was the first director of the Evergreen Park Office of Citizen Services, a position she held for 15 years. She also is the founder of several service organizations in Evergreen Park, including our Food Pantry and a local chapter of Meals on Wheels.

Accepting the award, Wrobel thanked the hundreds of volunteers and village employees who have worked with her over the years. Every department willingly contributes to programs that Wrobel has been involved with over the years, “and with smiles on their faces,” she said.

“We are blessed in this village to have such a means of cooperating and working with each other,” Wrobel said. “And for me, it’s just a work of love.”

The 2018 Directors of the Chamber are:

Maria Cantu-Dougala, First Midwest Bank

Laura Freeman, Berkshire Hathaway Home Services

Jeseña Hernandez, First National Bank of Evergreen Park

Sean Kelly, State Farm

Dr. Robert Machak, Evergreen Park Elementary School District 124

Frank Monreal, US Bank

Ginger Morgan, Thompson & Kuenster Funeral Home

Thomas O’Malley, Evergreen Park Community High School District 231

Jeannette Orejel, First American Bank

Bruce Smith, B Allan Graphics

Pam Waldrom, Academy of Self Defense

Chad Weiler, Little Company of Mary Hospital

Stephanie Welch, Humana

 

The Evergreen Park Chamber of Commerce hosted an informative Chamber Membership Breakfast on September 13, bringing business members together with local school officials to share information and exchange ideas.

Dr. Robert Machak, Superintendent of Evergreen Park Elementary School District 124, hosted the Chamber event at Central Middle School. He provided a delicious breakfast prepared by School District 124’s Director of Food Services Deb Michicich. The event included energetic performances by the Central Middle School band and award-winning choir, as well as networking and a presentation by District 124 administration officials on the state of the schools.

The four elementary schools and one middle school in Evergreen Park have seen a surge in enrollment over the past four years. The district’s student body has increased by 7 percent, adding some 127 children, according to Tim Kostecki, Director of Business Services for District 124. As a result, the district is financially strong and foresees continued growth.

School officials also reported on the district’s three-year strategic plan and on topics including school culture, buildings and grounds, safety, technology, curriculum, instruction, and assessment.