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National Yoga Awareness Month Poll

National Yoga Awareness Month Poll

National Yoga Awareness Month is in September, and we’re here to show you how you can celebrate this month in the best way possible, by enjoying our local yoga studios!


Vote for your favorite to be entered for a chance to win a gift card to the studio of your choice.

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Latest Videos

Jamar Brings Healthy Food to Rockford with Ripe Life Juice Co

Ripe Life Juice Co. is bringing healthy options to the 815! What started as a home smoothie project, evolved into a restaurant in the heart of downtown that serves up quality quick options to help you run your day.

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Salamone's of Cherry Valley Did a Remodel!

Salamone's Cherry Valley remodeled their bar and is inviting you to experience it for yourself! Enjoy their classic Italian dishes and the new space during your next dinner.

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Downtown Rockford Has a Bookstore Thanks to Dave with Maze Books!

Nothing beats the smell of books. Maze Books is a new and used bookstore that opened this year in downtown Rockford. Most titles are under $5 and used children's books are only a buck! He carries a wide range of genres and has a section for local authors as well as rare titles. If you're a reader and love local, then Maze Books is your place to go.

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Drink Beer and Wine for a Good Cause at Hanz Brew Fest 2022

Do you like fall? Do you like beer? Do you like supporting the education of local students? If your answer is YES! then check out Hanz Brew Fest this weekend!

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Tarot Readings by Michelle Can Give You Insight Into Your Future and Connections to Your Past

Spooky season is upon us, and Tarot readings by Michelle can help you gain insight into your future and connections to your past.

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Vintage Shop Hop

Vintage Shop Hop

Thousands of shoppers will converge on northern Illinois and southern Wisconsin once again for the fall edition of the popular Vintage Shop Hop™ on Friday and Saturday, October 7 & 8, 2022. The event is a self-guided road trip for vintage and antique lovers in the northern Illinois and southern Wisconsin region to satisfy their ‘vintage’ addiction and support small businesses at the same time.


Typically, between 350 to 400 locally owned vintage shops, antique malls, women’s boutiques, occasional and pop-up shops, home décor, upscale consignment shops, and vintage barn sales in the two-state region participate in this one-of-a-kind event.


The event was destined to grow quickly. Between the shop owners looking for a unique, low-cost way to promote not only their shop but their town too, and then add in shoppers who are excited to have a list of hundreds of fun shops dropped in their lap, you can’t hold them back!” laughed Ann Campos, founder of the event. The event stretches across two states from the Mississippi River

on the west to Lake Michigan on the east, goes north to Stevens Point & Green Bay in Wisconsin, and south to I-80 in Illinois.


Each shop has an “in-store” promotion for the weekend, and many shops go miles beyond just complimentary refreshments (like mimosas and dessert treats). “We encourage the shops to create a day unlike the other 363 days of the year,” say Campos. As a result, shoppers will find fun promotions like “pop a balloon” or “spin the wheel” to determine their discount, door prizes, meet-the-maker, paint demos, live music, food trucks, and free swag bags just for stopping in. Others create punch card promotions to get people moving around their region, hire live music and invite food trucks to park in their lots. All shops will be ready and waiting to greet new faces to their store and provide the shoppers with the best in customer service. “The participating shop owners are very passionate about the history of their antiques as well as their buildings. In order to compete with big box stores, small business owners have to be creative in their marketing efforts and work extra hard to get noticed,” Campos said. “I’m just happy I can help them out by using my experience to bring customers to their doorstep with this fun shopping event. To my knowledge, it’s the biggest event of its kind in the Midwest.”


Many of the shops are set in historic and unique buildings, in downtowns, villages, and the countryside brimming with history which sets them apart from their competitors in big shopping malls. For example, shoppers who step into Vintique Junque in Monroe, Wisconsin can find a sweet shop filled with antiques, vintage, recycled goods, and fun junk housed in a historic 1880s coal store that supplied the downtown square with coal. Or shoppers can experience ‘out of the box' shopping for on-trend vintage items and home décor inside a gorgeous 1882 Methodist church, complete with steeple, at The Half Full Nest in West Dundee, Illinois. Or, explore Starline Excursion Market in Harvard, Illinois tucked inside a renovated, ivy-covered farm equipment factory built in 1888. These are just a few examples of shops located inside unique structures making the shopping experience memorable.


Road trip planning for the Vintage Shop Hop is made easy with the interactive Google Map and Master List of Shops. The Google Map includes all shop details that can be accessed on mobile devices while shoppers are traveling the area. The list and map are both found on the event’s blog page 24/7/365 and can be printed off www.vintageshophop.blogspot.com or follow the Facebook page at www.facebook.com/VintageShopHopEvent. A direct link to the interactive Google Map is here: https://bit.ly/VintageShopHopMap_Oct2022

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Local Man Works to Revitalize Broadway

Local Man Works to Revitalize Broadway

It's no secret that the past few years have been hard on small businesses, with some parts of the city getting hit harder than others. In the wake of COVID and inflation there are those within our community that are stepping up. Isidro Barrios is one of those people.


After spending 40 years as a union carpenter, Isidro and his wife, Melanie, opened a community center inside of their neighborhood. El Barrio is located at 1516 Broadway and aims to be a resource for the businesses and residents of the Broadway region. Isidro referenced his 13 grandbabies as motivation for the passion he has for his community. And his first goal is to help re-establish the Broadway corridor as a thriving business community.



Between 11th Street and Kishwaukee Broadway has over 50 available storefronts and through a combination of efforts Isidro aims at reducing that number. One of these efforts is a Business Opportunity Event for the 11th Ward.


This event is being hosted at El Barrio, 1516 Broadway, on Friday, September 30th, from 5:00 to 8:00pm. The event hosts multiple opportunities for both existing businesses and those wishing to start a business. There will be resources and information for new and existing businesses, information on solar energy and the Illinois Shines Program, as well as a host of special guests.


State Representative Dave Vella, State Representative Maurice West, 11th Ward Alderman Tuffy Quinonez, County Chairman Joe Chiarelli, and County Board Jaime Salgado will all be in attendance.


If you have a passion for the Broadway corridor of our city, are wanting to start a business and are looking for a place to open, or just want to connect with our local leadership, then head on over to El Barrio this Friday night.


You can RSVP at elbarrio@myyahoo.com

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A Fiesta at Alvarez Mexican Restaurant

A Fiesta at Alvarez Mexican Restaurant

We ventured to Alvarez Mexican Restaurant to try their famous margaritas and eat our weight in chips! As you do…


We were warmly greeted with chips and salsa, and decided to try the Quest Fundido, a fondue with chorizo brought with even more chips (muahahaha). This is a HUGE appetizer, we dug right in to the warm cheese and chorizo medley. The flavor was out of the world and we will definitely order this again… but bring many many more friends, hahaha.


Acting like we hadn’t completely filled up on chips, we then sampled the Enchiladas en Mole (three corn tortillas in a rich poblano mole sauce with cheese and sour cream) and the Fajita Lover (sizzling strips of steak, chicken, & shrimp, topped with spanish onions, slices of tender bell pepper & pico de gallo).


I have never tried mole sauce, so this was a first for me! The sweetness was a unique contrast to the enchilada and I now see why folks love this stuff. It had almost a nutty flavor, and that pairing was a fun surprise.


The fajita was a masterpiece of a medley. Everything was grilled to perfection (no tough shrimp here!) and the meat to vegetable ratio was perfect. I’m a big fan of build your own meals, so fajitas really cater to my desire to get my hands dirty. I was happily surprised with the generous dollops of sour cream and guacamole as well.


I almost forgot the margaritas! With a strong blend of many liquors, these are described as “killer” on the menu, and I have to agree with them! Not too sweet, they really nailed the balance. Drink responsibly!


Check out Alvarez for your next chip binge!