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CELEBRATE FREEDOM IN CHAMPAIGN, IL

by Rose Price

The Fourth of July is a sacred day for our country, we call to mind the blood, sweat and tears that accompanied the founding of this great nation.  We also call to mind the many men and women who still fight to protect our freedom, especially those who've made the ultimate sacrifice so we can enjoy the rights that make America the greatest country on earth.  

Read the Declaration Of Independence here.

Champaign hosts one of the best 4th of July events in the country, with it's 66th Annual Freedom Celebration.  Festivities will start at 7pm. with live music on the main stage, located on Kirby Avenue between First and Oak Street.  There will also be a bounce house and inflatables for the little ones.  After the music will be the singing of the national anthem and retiring of the flag and immediately following, will be the long awaited fireworks show from the pyros Melrose Pyrotechnics. Go here for the full program and map.

 

 

  

OTHER 4TH OF JULY CELEBRATIONS AROUND OUR AREA:
 
Paxton IL July 4th Celebration:  Paxton celebrates with a day of fun! Starting at 9:00 am there will be Live Music, Food, Children's Games- Bounce House, Great Car Show, Tractor Show and even a Watermelon Eating Contest!  Everything will take place at Pells Park, with a grand Fireworks Display at 9:00pm at the Memorial Field.  For more information follow this link:  PAXTON IL 4TH OF JULY 
 
Mahomet IL Freedom Fest 4th of July Celebration- Lake of the Woods Park:  Get set for a day with Family activities, food, and Music in Motion beginning at 3:00 pm!  After a tribute to our military men and women, they will LIGHT UP THE LAKE with a Fireworks Display that is set to music! Admission is $1 per person. Need more information, Follow this link: FREEDOM FEST MAHOMET IL
 
Tuscola IL- Sparks in the Park- 4th of July CelebrationThey don't fool around in Tuscola! The day starts with an early morning 5K run....but then you get to eat! A hearty pancake breakfast follows, then it's a basketball tournament, parade, and so much more!  The day is filled with a family carnival carnival of inflatables, games & food for the kids. Lives Music, food and drinks for Mom's & Dads. Followed by a fantastic Fireworks Display at dusk!
 
 
                                     WISHING YOU ALL A HAPPY & SAFE 4TH OF JULY!

9 Tips For Making Your Champaign IL Home Energy Efficient

by Rose Price

Summer is officially here and inevitably your electrical bill is slowly creeping up as the months go on.  We have a few simply upgrades you can make to your home to make it more efficient and help keep more money in your bank account. 

 

Programmable Thermostats

Energy.gov suggests that turning your thermostat down 7-10 degrees for 8 hours a day can save you "as much as 10% a year on your heating/cooling."  Save more money; follow the recommended optimum daytime (78 degrees) and night time (70 degrees) temperatures, you can preset these and your thermostat will adjust on it's own.

 

 

Insulate

Adding new or additional insulation to your ceilings, attic and walls along with using caulk and or weather stripping (ensuring windows and doors are properly sealed) will prevent cold drafts and air leaks, keeping warm air inside in the winter.  These same improvements will help trap cold air inside in the summer.  

Ceiling Fans 

Now you've programmed your thermostat to the optimum levels, but chances are you may feel a little warm in certain rooms throughout the day.  This is where an energy star ceiling fan can help.  The average central air conditioning unit uses 3,500 watts of energy when running while the average ceiling fan uses only 60 watts, even when running on high!  You could save a lot of money even by running your fan for only half an hour a day.  In order to get the most from your ceiling fan follow these simple ceiling fan hacks from The Simple Dollar.  

 

 

HACK #1  In the summer time you want to adjust your fan so the air blows downward.    

Most fans have both a clockwise and a counter clockwise setting.  There are conflicting theories on what direction to use and when, simply because it is all dependent on how the blades are aligned and this varies from model to model.  Forget the theories, there's an easier way.  Simply stand below your fan and turn it on high, if you immediately feel a breeze, then it is on the summer setting (usually counter clockwise).  During the summer months, your ceiling fans should be running on high, with air blowing down, this will create the most air movement and give you the coveted breeze effect.

HACK #2 Turn the heat up a few degrees in the summertime.  

Sounds crazy right?  But, running your fan on high throughout the day will circulate the air better and create a breeze effect that will make the room feel cooler than it actually is.  

HACK #3  Turn ceiling fans off when you leave your home.

Obviously! Right?! Though running at 60 watts isn't a ton, you are sure to save quite a bit more if you shut your fans off when you're not home.  

 

Check out the video from Home Depot for instructions on how to install a new ceiling fan:

Replace Old Appliances

Obviously, old appliances aren't as energy efficient as newer models.  So, replace these dinosaurs with newer more efficient, Energy Star certified appliances.

For example:

  • A high efficiency on-demand water heater only fires when you need hot water.  It heats it quickly and then stops burning fuel.  
  • Get low flow appliances.  Low flow toilets, shower heads, and washing machines save a lot of water than more traditional models.
  • For the best results, double up.  Combine a low flow shower head with a on-demand water heater and double your savings.    

Window Treatments

Installing blinds, drapes, and shades will reduce the amount of sunlight and heat that enters your home.  Of course, these can be positioned in a way to let light and heat in only when you want it.  

Go Fluorescent

Fluorescent light bulbs last 8-12 times longer than incandescent. Plus they look dynamite in the home!  

Open Your Doors

Keeping your doors closed stops your cooling systems from cooling the entire house and interrupts the flow of air, so open those doors!

Check Those Vents

A lot of homes, especially older ones have vents in strange places like closets for instance.  Go through your home and seal off any vent that is cooling an area that doesn't need cooling.  Even spare bedrooms and little used rooms can be wasted vents; blocking these will save you money. There are a large variety of covers out there, you're sure to find one that suits our vents. 

Last but certainly not least...

Take Advantage of Tax Incentives

The federal government offers a ton of incentives for making energy efficient home improvements.  Recent increases in incentives now allow for up to 30% of the cost of the home improvements, whether its for new windows, insulation, or air conditioning, up to $1,500 back into your bank account. 

 

Champaign IL BLUES, BREWS & BBQ FESTIVAL!

by Rose Price

One of the best events of the summer in Champaign is the Blues, Brews and BBQ festival.  The two day-free event​, the 8th annual blues fest features two stages for musical performances, the 4th annual Dinosores Motorcycle Show and the Orpheum Children's Theatre and it's right in the middle of our vibrant downtown, with more than 90 bars, restaurants and shops within a few blocks of the fest.  The event was always designed to bring families and the community together in a fun and entertaining way.  Last year, nearly 60,000 people attended.  Bring your friends and family and come enjoy Champaign/Urbana the best way we know how, with music, food and beer.  This year the fest is headlined by two of the most talented blues women in the industry.  Check em out below, you won't want to miss these incredible performances. Fluid events is teaming up with Dinosores Motorcycle club once again and the show features cash prizes in several categories.  You'll see a ton of show bikes roll in from around the country, these custom bikes are guaranteed to blow your mind.   

Check out the facebook page for up-to-date information about the fest.  

Event Schedule:

THE MAIN STAGE PRESENTED BY COORS LIGHT, U.S. 105.9 & CIB BANK

FRIDAY

4:30-5:30 - No Solid State

5:50-7:20 - Upshot

7:45-8:15 - Adrianna Marie

8:40-10:10 - Sena Ehrhardt

10:30-Midnight - Carolyn Wonderland

SATURDAY

12:50-2:20 - Country Showdown

2:40-4:10 - Laura Rain

4:30-5:00 - Motorcycle Awards Show

5:00-6:30 - Joanna Connor

6:50-8:20 - Janiva Magness

8:40-10:10 - Shawn Murphy

10:30-Midnight - Ana Popovic

 

 

HAPPY FATHER'S DAY!

by Rose Price

Thanks to our friends at Champaign Surplus and Chambana Moms for creating this great list of fun things to do on Father’s Day. The options are really limitless, especially since the weather should be nice on June 21. Here is list of the best events and activities to help Dad relax and feel appreciated, and if you make a stop at Champaign Surplus, you're guaranteed to find a great gift for Dad.   They have something for every Dad; a variety of options from coolers and boots to tents and camping gear. Shop the huge selection of brands like The North Face, Columbia, Patagonia, Kelty, Merrell and many more! Plus, they've even placed “Father’s Day Gift Pick” signs all around the store for those that need a little help getting started!”

Harvest Moon Drive-In Movie Theatre: The Harvest Moon is a unique drive-in movie theatre located in the heart of central Illinois. Conveniently located 35 miles from Bloomington-Normal and 30 miles from Champaign-Urbana. Treat dad to a movie under the stars in Gibson City.

Piatt County Fair:  Tractor pulls, bands, inflatables, fair pageant, and much more!  Admission to the fair is FREE. Swimming: No better way to cool off than swimming in one of our awesome public aquatic centers. Food, glorious food!:  Whether you stop by a local Farmer’s Market and cook at home or eat at one of the amazing local restaurants dad will sure love to the time spent together!

Events over Father’s Day Weekend: 

June 19-21: Father’s Day Weekend at Monticello Railway:  Saturday, June 20, and Sunday, June 21 at the Monticello Railway Museum. Dads ride free; tickets for kids and grown-ups range from $6-10 (kids under 2 are free). What little boys don’t love trains (and daddies are just overgrown little boys)? Dads ride FREE when accompanied by their children! Times available at the MRM website. 

Strawberry Jam:  Saturday, June 20, 4- 6:30 p.m. Bring a picnic dinner and a blanket; there’s no better way to celebrate that feeling than with live music and your favorite summertime treat! Enjoy musical performances and taste fresh strawberries over ice cream (while supplies last).

Father’s Day Celebration at Sholem Aquatic Center: Sunday, June 21, 11 a.m.-9 p.m. It’s free admission for all dads (with a paying child), and he gets to relax in whatever way he chooses. The day includes a dads-only cannonball contest with prizes; a trivia bowl; a “draw your dad” contest for ages 3-12; half-priced root beer floats for all dads; and a closing time of 9 p.m. (for this day only), later than normal due to the Summer Solstice.

Sounds at Sunset:  Sunday, June 21, 6-8 p.m. Gather your friends, family, and neighbors for the Sounds of Sunset events throughout Champaign. Each event will include an array of activities such as live music, inflatables and more! Best of all – It's free! Participants may bring lawn chairs and refreshments.

America’s Pastime: Treat dad to a baseball game. The Normal Cornbelters have a home game on June 21, featuring an appearance by Cameron Hughes and his unique brand of cheering. Thanks again to Champaign Surplus for sponsoring this guide and Chambana Moms for sharing it.    

Check out Chambana Mom's  Free and Cheap Summer Fun in Champaign-Urbana for more activity ideas to enjoy with your family.  

IT'S FOLLOW THE FARMSTEAD WEEKEND IN CHAMPAIGN IL!

by Rose Price

                

Another summer weekend is upon us in Champaign IL and it's a very special one!  It's Follow the Farmstead and the kids can't get enough!!

June 12-13- FOLLOW THE FARMSTEAD!

This is such a cool trip!  It's a tour of farms in the southeast quadrant of Champaign County. Farms, both large & small will be highlighted and you will see new technology as well as centennial farm tours, interact with animals, learn about & be able to try out some farm equipment, and learn about farming in general.

This is going to be a fantastic day with many opportunities to learn about the farms that sustain this area! NO TICKETS ARE NEEDED.  Join in at any time during the event at HALE PARK in PHILO.

Kids activities, food trucks and a variety of information will be available from the Champaign County Farm Bureau and Visit Champaign County- including Tour Maps.  Because this is a Free Event,  they will be collecting non-perishble food for the Easter Illinois Foodbank.  More information can be obtained at this link:  FollowTheFarmstead

​Participating Farms are as follows:

  1. 7 Sisters Farm | 1123 County Road 2300 E., Sidney | Visit website
  2. Bane Family Meats | 1062 County Road 2125 E., Sidney | Visit website 
  3. Hastings Crest Creek Farm | 1947 County Road 1100 N., Sidney | Visit website 
  4. Herriott Farm | 1926 County Road 800 N., Sidney 
  5. Rice Farm | 786 County Road 1800 E., Philo
  6. Rund Farms | 73 County Road 1300 E., Pesotum

​​​It's going to be a fantastic family day!     Enjoy!

The Champaign IL Land Connection Farmer's Market Update!

by Rose Price

                         

It's hard to believe that we are in our inaugural year of the Champaign Farmer's Market because it is going strong already...as if we had been here for years!  The people of the Champaign/Urbana area had been wanting a Farmer's Market that was central to the downtown Champaign area for quite some time, and boy are they showing their support!

Personally, I couldn't be happier. The vendors are all exceptional, the produce is absolutely amazing and all the products that have been brought to the market are truly incredible. Whether you are looking for fruits & vegetables, meats, fish or poultry, or the wares of the many talented artisans that set-up in the market weekly...you will never be disappointed!  The quality and care that is put into every single item in this Farmer's Market is evident at each of the Vendor's booths.

Right now is Strawberry season in Champaign County! Are you a berry lover? You must come on down to the market tomorrow and try some of these scrumptious berries. I take them home and eat them just as they are...although I do know that some people prefer to use them to bake some yummy items or turn them into jellies and jams. I'm all for that too!  And if you'd like to drop some off, I'd be a very happy recipient, I'm just not very good at doing all of that stuff.

Purple Kohlrabi and Tomato's have made a show the last week and are anticipated in larger quantities this week.  All in all, I can't wait to stroll through the market and check out all the goodies that await.  

If you get the chance, make sure to come downtown and take a look.  The Market takes place every Tuesday from 4:00- 7:00 pm in Parking Lot M at 310- 330 N. Neil St, downtown Champaign IL.  If you need directions, give me a call, I'd be happy to help you along your way.

Reminder:  Don't forget to collect all your Farm Fresh Recipe cards when you're at the market!

Farm Fresh Recipe Link

Have a POWERFUL afternoon!

 

It's Champaign/Urbana Summer Fair & Festival Season!

by Rose Price

This is such an exciting time of year for the Champaign/Urbana area!  As summer approaches, so do the events taking place around the area...and that includes the array of fairs and festivals! Starting in June and going through August, here are some of the larger events taking place:

WhatFolk and Roots Friday Concerts

When: Friday, June 5, noon-1 p.m. 

Where: Lake House in Crystal Lake Park, 206 W. Park St., Urbana

How much: Join the Urbana Park District and the C-U Folk & Roots Festival on the first Friday of each month this summer for some great FREE live music!
Highlights: We’re bringing back music at lunchtime. We’ll have boating and drink/snack specials, just bring your lunch and enjoy an afternoon lunch break on the lake.


WhatStrawberry Jam
When: Saturday, June 20, 4-8:30 p.m.
Where: Meadowbrook Park, 2808 S. Race St., Urbana
How much: Free family event
Highlights: Summer is a time to take it slow and easy. There’s no better way to celebrate that feeling than with live music and your favorite summertime treat! Enjoy musical performances and taste fresh strawberries over ice cream (while supplies last).  Visitors can also take guided walks through the prairie, Champaign/Urbana Herb Society Garden and Organic Gardens.  Hay rides will be available to and from the playground.  Visitors are also invited to bring their own picnic dinners and blankets to wrap up the evenings. Stay up to date with everything jam at their facebook page or check out Chambanamoms page for other fun family things to do.  

 

 

 

What: Heritage Days
When: June 4-6
Where: Downtown Farmer City
How much: Free admission but tickets required for carnival rides.
Highlights: Full carnival, car show, food, live music, and more!

 

 

What: 8th Annual Old Glory Festival
When:
 Saturday, June 13
Where: Bement
How much: Admission is free (fees may apply to special events)
Highlights: Petting zoo, inflatables/kids games, food, music, entertainment, stagecoach rides.

 

 

What: Piatt County Fair
When:
 June 15-21
Where: Cerro Gordo
How much: Admission is free (fees may apply to special events)
Highlights: Tractor pulls, bands, inflatables, fair pageant, and much more!

 

 

 

 

What: Vermilion County Fair

WhenJune 23-27
Where: Vermilion County Fairgrounds, Oakwood
How much: Gate fee for the week is $10/person and lasts all week. Ticket prices vary for grandstand events

Highlights: Queen pageant, truck and tractor pull, bull riding, racing, carnival rides and more. 

 

What: Gifford Community Celebration

When: June 27
Where: Werner Roessler Park, Gifford; Main Street (parade); behind the Gifford State Bank
How much: Free
Highlights: The Gifford Community Celebration is a full day jam-packed with entertainment and fun for all ages. The event is held on the last Saturday in June each year. More details to follow as the date gets closer.

 

What: Ford County Fair
When: June 21-27
Where: Melvin
How much: Season Ticket $20; Most nights entry from 3-9 p.m. $5.  (6 and under free).
Highlights:  This year’s fair will include a horse show on Sunday, queen pageant on Monday, Frankie Ballard & Granger Smith concert on Tuesday, talent show on Wednesday, tractor and truck pull on Thursday, rodeo on Friday, and demolition derby on Saturday.

 

 

 

What: The Blues, Brews, and BBQ Festival
When: Friday, June 26, 4 p.m.-midnight.; Saturday, June 27, Noon-midnight
Where: Downtown Champaign at the corner of Walnut and Washington
How much: Free admission; food for sale; other items may be ticketed.
Highlights: Two days of music, motorcycle show, free inflatables, lots of barbeque and beer.

 

What: Tolono Fun Days
When: June 26 and June 27
Where: West Side Park
Highlights:  5K Kracker Klassic on Friday at 7 p.m., movie in the park. More details to come!

(Reminder, Fourth of July info will be in another post.)

 

 

What: Moultrie – Douglas County Fair
When: July 5-11
Where: Located at Jurgens Park in Arthur behind Arthur High School.
How much: Most nights, free gate fee. Grandstand shows vary.
Highlights: A full week of activities such as livestock shows, tractor pulls, demolition derby, horse and pony shows, live entertainment, carnival rides for all ages, and exhibits for the whole family.

 

 

 

What: Fisher Community Fair and Horse Show

 

When: July 7-11
Where: Fisher Fairgrounds
How much: Admission prices vary from $2-$10. Season tickets also available.
Highlights: Scheduled is still being finalized … but you can count on favorites such as the Demolition Derby, Lawn Mower Demolition Derby, the 5K run/walk, car show, live music, queen pageant and more.

 

 

 

 

 

 

What: Champaign Music Festival
When: Saturday, July 11, 6 p.m.midnight 

Where: Downtown Champaign
How much: Free
HighlightsThe Champaign Music Festival, formerly Mariposa, will feature nationally recognized musicians in Hessel Park. Join us for this exciting night of music, and enjoy food and beverages from your favorite local establishments as we pack the park! The event will feature two stages of entertainment. Check the website for a full band schedule coming in June.

 

What: Champaign County Fair
When: July 24-August 1
Where: Champaign County Fairgrounds, Urbana 
Highlights: County music shows, rodeo, Demolition Derby, motorcycle racing, harness racing, tractor and truck pull, talent Show … plus all of your fair food favorites and carnival rides!

 

 

What: Coles County Fair
When: July 26-Aug. 2
Where: Coles County Fairgrounds, Charleston (map)
How much: 7:00 am- 4:00 pm Admission is FREE!  After 4 pm Adults pay $3.00. Parking is $2.00, or a Parking Permit may be purchased for the duration for $15.00. Grandstand tickets vary per show.
Highlights: Illinois’ Oldest Continuous County Fair, since 1854. Carnival rides, a Western Horse Show, Art Hall, Pro bull riding, Demolition Derby, harness Racing, and truck and tractor pull and more!

 

Reference:

Chambanamoms.com  awesome website & work.

 

HOLY PROPERTY TAXES BATMAN

by Rose Price

Champaign Property Tax Revenue has increased dramatically over the past 42 years.  Increased 90% believe it or not, and though Champaign collects $280 million more in revenue than surrounding areas, don't be alarmed.  It is actually a really good thing.  Many people shout "inflation!" when confronted with these numbers but it is much  more than that and is really a good sign for Champaign.  A big contributor to this drastically higher tax revenue is the tremendous success of new local subdivisions.  Where there was once large single plots of land (one source of tax revenue), now stand many.  This is great news.  It means growth.  Steady growth in Champaign's case and it isn't at all bad when a large percent of this tax revenue goes to benefit local businesses and local institutions, for instance, Parkland College receives 26% of its $25 million yearly revenue from these property taxes.   

Sure the numbers might look alarming at first glance, but pull back the curtain and then welcome your new neighbors.

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Rose Price
Landmark Real Estate
One East Main Street, Suite 200
Champaign IL 61820
217-202-8843
217-352-1933
Fax: 217-378-1281