October 2023 Newsletter

Director’s Note ~

On Fri, Oct 6th from 7-9pm, join us for the Funky Butt Brass Band at the new Alton Godfrey Rotary Park, located across the street from Alton City Hall at 101 E. 3rd St. We thank Simmons Hanly Conroy for sponsoring this concert featuring traditional New Orleans brass, Chicago blues, Memphis soul, Southern rock and St. Louis R&B! Bring a lawn chair to place on 3rd Street which will be closed to traffic or a blanket to spread on the lawn. Food & beverages will be available for purchase on-site, or attendees are encouraged to pick up a carry out meal from their favorite Downtown Alton dining establishment on their way.

Our efforts to make the public harden beds in the district look their best will continue  through the fall weather permitting! If you would like to get involved please check out the upcoming dates & locations at www.DowntownAlton.com/Gardening.

~ Sara McGibany, Executive Director

A ton of fall fun awaits you at the Downtown Alton Chili Cook-Off – TEAMS WANTED!

Join in the fall fun at the Downtown Alton Chili Cook-Off, to be held on Sat, October 14th from Noon until 3:00. This year’s event will be held in the warehouse and on the patio at The Lodge at the Lovejoy, located at 401 Piasa St..

Local chefs, both amateur and professional, will match their favorite recipe with others in similar categories. Judges will award $100 prizes to winners in 4 categories: Individual, Organization, Business and Restaurant as well as for the best decorated booth. The team voted as “People’s Choice” will receive the coveted silver ladle and bragging rights. Enjoy live music from Big George Jr. and the NGK Band! $10 tickets for adults and $5 for kids will be available at the door. Funds raised will support our ongoing efforts to improve and promote Downtown Alton.

CLICK HERE to register your team

CLICK HERE to RSVP and spread the word on Facebook

Join us for our 3 month series of First Fridays Late Night Art & Shopping Experiences!

Alton Main Street and Jacoby Arts Center are partnering to present First Fridays, a late night art and shopping experience which spans 14 locations across the Downtown district. This event will be held on the First Friday of every month in Oct, Nov & Dec, providing you with an opportunity to check out new shops and galleries and visit familiar favorites!

Participants are offering a variety of discounts, refreshments and giveaways. Everyone who has their passport stamped at 10+ locations will receive a $10 gift certificate to any participating business. A free shuttle will be provided from 5-9pm, running a continuous loop between all locations.

On Fri, Oct 6th, park at the lot at Broadway & Ridge and start your evening by picking up your passport at Jacoby Arts Center which will guide your journey to Rushmore Boutique, AP Cigar, Coco+Oak, AJStotlerPhotography, Funky Planet Toys & Gifts, Refabuloused  Relics, The Alton Dispensary, Epicurean Fare & LuciAnna’s Pastries, The Conservatory, Country Meadows I & II, Great Rivers and Routes Tourism Bureau’s Alton Visitors Center, BASECAMP.alton and FLOCK Food Truck Park & Bar.

Find WHERE’S WADLOW during First Fridays and win a $100 gift certificate to any participating location!

CLICK HERE to RSVP & spread the word on Facebook

4 weeks remain for the Alton Farmers’ & Artisans’ Market

Make sure to buy your Halloween pumpkins and fall décor directly from our hard-working vendors, and stock up on all your favorite autumn products & canned goods! Reminder that Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program recipients can double their buying power for fresh fruits and veggies at the market! Visit our info booth to swipe your SNAP card where you can have an unlimited amount of benefits matched.

More info at: Facebook.com/AltonFarmersMarket

Read on for details of some special upcoming activities at the market!

Canine Carnival at the Market

We’re teaming up with our friends at Hope Animal Rescues to present a fun day for dogs & dog lovers! On Sept 30th, we will have a pet parade at 10am, and a pet costume contest with voting to take place on Facebook. Rescue agencies will be there for an adopt-a-thon! You’ll  enjoy pet-friendly activities as well as vendor booths offering accessories & services for your furry friends.

Congratulations to Wrangler (pictured), for winning the Grand Marshall contest – we can’t wait to see him lead the Pet Parade!

CLICK HERE to RSVP and spread the word on Facebook

Live music & a Pop-Up Roller Skating Rink at the Market

On 10/7 shoppers will enjoy live music from Lauren Waters & a pop-up roller skating rink with Skate Culture ($5 kids / $10 adults)

Goat Yoga at the Market

On 10/14 we welcome Goat Yoga of Southern Illinois !

If you would like to participate in the class that will run from 10:00-11:30am, CLICK HERE to purchase tickets for $35

The goats will be on-site for everyone to visit with (no ticket required) from 9am-Noon!

Community Yard Sale at the Market

On 10/21 we will host a Community Yard Sale in the adjacent parking lot! Typically our market is strictly for handmade & homegrown products, but we have one event in the spring & one event in the fall where anything goes. Clean out your closets and have a table to sell items that you no longer need, or come down to score some great deals.

CLICK HERE to register for a booth – the fee to participate is only $12!

51st Annual Historic Home and Building Tour

On Sat, October 7th from 10am-3pm, Alton Area Landmarks Association will host a tour featuring 7 of Alton’s most historic and beautiful church buildings:
St. Paul Episcopal Church (1856)
SS. Peter and Paul Catholic Church (1857)
First Presbyterian Church (circa 1897)
Union Avenue Baptist (1902)
Morning Star Missionary Baptist Church (1904)
First Unitarian Church of Alton (1905)
and The Bridge Church (1961)

The architectural styles range from Gothic Revival to Mid-Century Modern, and the structures feature world renowned stained glass and mosaic art, soaring interiors with massive pipe organs, elaborate wood ceilings, sculpture and painted decorations.

$10 Tickets which include a shuttle bus can be purchased online at www.riversandroutes.com

For more info: www.AltonLandmarks.org

Cafe 111

will be hosting Wind Down Wednesday (also known as Wine Down Wednesday!) every week starting Oct 4th, from 4-7pm at 111 E. 4th St.—take the elevator on the left and press the A button to get to the attic. We will have a weekly signature cocktail with a mix of classic and creative options. For those who don’t drink alcohol but would still like to experience a great ambience with board games and networking, we will also have a signature mocktail. Light appetizers and charcuterie cups will be available for purchase.

State Street Market

is pleased to invite you to check out our NEW happy hour appetizers along with $4 glasses of select wine! Chef PK’s  dinner menu is served Tues-Sat starting at 5:00, reservations encouraged. Chef PK is working on the newest seasonal menu coming to you in October, and we can’t wait to see what he has to offer. We also have some Wine Dinners coming up so follow us on Facebook or Instagram for all of the details. Fall courtyard seating is just around the corner and we can’t wait for you to get cozy around the fire with us!

The Alton Dispensary 

invites you to join us for our annual Fall Festival this Oct 27th and 28th! We will be opening our doors at 10am and partying until 9pm. Outside we will have cultivators from across the state joining us with interactive pop-ups, local vendors, live glassblowing, and many food options! Massive sales on product inside, free raffles, and more! This is a day of savings and fun you won’t want to miss! Must be 21+ to attend.

For full details on our products, please visit our website: https://AltonDispensary.com/

Senior Services Plus

Flu and Covid Vaccine Clinics Oct 4th & 24th and Nov 1st & 15th from 10am-1pm. To make an appointment: 618-465-3298×123. OSF St. Anthony’s Health Center is conducting Anxiety and Depression Screenings at SSP on Oct 19th from 11am-1pm. Screenings are free & confidential, space is limited. To make an appointment, call 618-465-3298×123.

Jacoby Arts Center

The Prints of Darkness exhibition will open during the First Friday event on Oct 6th from 6-8pm. Juried by resident artist Jeff Sass, the exhibit is a showcase of everything creepy and spooky. Grab a gift in the artist’s shop, enjoy a drink at the bar, view the showcase of 36 local artists, and make a piece of art to take home!  First Fridays are always free and open to the public. JAC will stay open until 9pm that night for First Fridays!

Check out www.JacobyArtsCenter.org for more details!

Alton Memorial Hospital

Starting Mon, Oct. 2, our College Ave. entrance will be closed for approximately a month for renovations to widen the entrance to allow for better traffic flow to the campus. Entrances from Rock Springs Dr. and Brown Street will remain open. Patients and visitors are asked to turn south onto Rock Springs Dr. from College Ave. and use the Memorial Dr. entrance, where visitors will have   access to Alton Memorial Rehabilitation and Therapy facilities. Please also note that Rock Springs Dr. between Memorial Dr. and Brown St. is closed for tree removal, cleanup and storm sewer repair which is also expected to last approximately a month.

YWCA of Alton

Our Annual Trivia Fundraiser is just around the corner, and we can’t wait to see you there.

Saturday, November 4, 2023 – Trivia begins at 7:00 PM at Alton Best Western Conference Center

We’ve partnered with Trivia Riot to bring you eight thrilling rounds of trivia that are sure to challenge and entertain. And that’s not all! We’ll also have a range of exciting activities, including a 50/50 raffle, silent auction, bucket of booze raffle, mulligans, and the ever-popular heads and tails game. But our Trivia Night is more than just a good time; it’s an opportunity for us to come together as a community and share the incredible work happening at the YWCA. Many of our programs are designed to support youth who may not have the means to access them. That’s why we actively seek grants and funding to sustain critical initiatives like Girls Circle/Boys Council, Riverbend Reading Club, Community Tutoring, and Racial/Social Justice programs. Additionally, we’ve formed new partnerships with Beyond Basketball and the Alton Boxing Club Association to broaden our impact. However, to continue these vital programs, fundraising is essential, and our Annual Trivia Night plays a significant role in filling the funding gaps.

We’ve been hard at work this summer serving our community, and we sincerely hope you can join us for our Annual Trivia Night. For all the details, please refer to the attached Trivia Support Request letter or visit our website at http://www.altonywca.com

Small Business Workshop: Becoming a Destination Business to Increase Sales & Profits

On Thurs, 10/26 from 8am-3:30pm at The Lovejoy (401 Piasa) Presented by Illinois Main Street & Alton Main Street
Price – Members: $29 / Non-members: $49 (includes lunch)

Presenter Jon Schallert teaches businesses and communities how to turn themselves into Consumer Destinations. Jon speaks to thousands annually on his Destination Business process, which he developed over the course of 25 years while interviewing 10,000+ independent business owners in 600+ cities. In this workshop created for Illinois business owners and community leaders, Jon will show how most businesses today can attract more customers, increase sales and profits, and lower their advertising costs when they start marketing as Destination Businesses. Attendees of this workshop will learn the most powerful tools to attract the highest-spending customers, how to maintain profit margins and limit price discounting, how to create free publicity that has 12 times the power of traditional advertising and more.

Registration will be live soon on the home page of www.DowntownAlton.com