Millennials Connected Holiday Party in Downtown Waukegan

#Millennials Connected- Millennials from across Lake County came together for a December evening of networking, live music and food tasting! We was excited to partner with Brandon Ewing- Waukegan School Board and Vance D. Wyatt along with a host of great sponsors! Food was catered from Sauzon, Layers of Flavor, Soul 4 Real and James Sisson.

Music was provided by Step7501 and DJ Double L had everyone up moving and grooving! Thanks again to all sponsors and Fuller Center for Housing- Hero Project for opening up their doors to host this fun event! Thanks to our panelists Yashin “Inchworm” Phillips and our very own Executive Director Josh Beadle! Stay tuned for our next Millenials Connected event!

Food was catered from Sauzon, Layers of Flavor, Soul 4 Real and James Sisson.

The Tree Lighting Ceremony was a Success!! The Tree is Lit Waukegan!!

Last Saturday Mayor Sam Cunningham flipped the switch and lit up the Christmas Tree in Jack Benny Plaza on Clayton and Genesee Streets! The Mayor was joined by the Waukegan Pagent Queens, Aldermen and Countywide elected officials!


Before the tree lighting took place, Urban Edge was filled with families taking Selfies With Santa, visiting vendors and listening to live performances!


Special Thanks to Green Noise, Nancy Flores and the Waukegan School’s Estrella Mariachi Band! Each performance sparked the crowd and had the audience moving and grooving! If you missed the performances watch here.


Thanks to the City of Waukegan for partnering together for another successful lighting! Thanks to our vendors and performers! Lastly, thank you, Waukegan, for coming out and supporting! We hope you had as much fun as we did and look forward to doing this again next year! Happy Holidays, Waukegan!


Photos courtesy of Explore Waukegan, City of Waukegan, Waukegan Main Street Promotional team and Heart of the City.

4 Saturdays Until Christmas! Come Shop Mall and Enjoy the Tree Lighting Ceremony!

We officially kicked off the holiday season last Saturday for #SmallBusinessSaturday. Businesses were open and filled with decorations, treats and great sales ready to serve you!

The Art-Park Waukegan also joined the fun by not only decorating the ArtPark but the old Carnegie Library and the Downtown District! You only have four Saturdays left so come down and find that unique gift!


Tomorrow, December 1st, is our Annual Tree Lighting Ceremony at the Jack Benny Plaza from 4pm-6pm! We have an array of vendors and ton of fun things for the kids!! Come take a Selfie with Santa provided by Heart of the City or enjoy a free book or craft courtesy of the Waukegan Public Library and Friends of the Waukegan Public Library! Pick up last minute gifts!  Warm up with chili! And … come countdown with us tomorrow! #EnjoyWaukegan  #ExploreWaukegan!

(Photos courtesy of Waukegan Main Street, City of Waukegan and ArtPark-Waukegan.)

Illinois Secretary of State Jesse White at the Waukegan Public Library for Family Reading Night

#DowntownWaukegan- Last Thursday Illinois Secretary of State Jesse White visited the Waukegan Public Library for Family Reading Night.

The program is a Statewide bilingual story time and craft event!

The Secretary spoke about the importance of reading and education.


White was introduced by Mayor Sam Cunningham and joined by numerous local leaders and elected officials.

Follow the Waukegan Public Library of Facebook or visit their website. (Photos courtesy of Colleen Erbach/IL Secretary of State)

Good Times by All for our 1st Paint & Sip

Last Wednesday at 17 North in the Downtown Waukegan Arts & Entertainment District we held our 1st Annual Paint & Sip Fundraiser.

This event was created solely to assist our efforts in lighting up Genesee Street for the Holidays.

We’re happy to report it was a success!! Thanks to 17 North owner Tom LeBaron and the entire staff for their excellent service and hospitality!

Most importantly thank YOU for your continued support of Waukegan Main Street!! Looking forward to seeing you in the Main Street District!

2018 Veterans Day Parade & Ceremony Wrap Up!

#VeteransDayWaukegan- There was a spirit of thankfulness and remembrance in the air during the 2018 Veterans Day Parade & Ceremony in Downtown Waukegan! The parade was energetic and concluded at Veterans Memorial Plaza also in the Downtown District where the ceremony honoring all veterans took place! Here are some photos from  yesterday’s festivities.

The parade starts with the Waukegan Police Department.


Waukegan City Clerk Janet Kilkelly, Deputy City Clerk David Patterson, 5th Ward Ald. Edith Newsome and 9th Ward Ald. Ann Taylor were among the dignitaries walking in the parade.


The Waukegan Fire Department Color Guard represented all first responders.


The award-winning Waukegan High School Bulldogs Marching Band added music and flair to the parade.



Waukegan High School JROTC is over 800 strong!


Waukegan Fire Department Rescue Squad was on hand.


Parade participants and those watching gathered in Veterans Memorial Plaza before the ceremony started.


Mayor Sam Cunningham asked attendees to thank the veterans at the ceremony and talked about this being the 100th anniversary of the end of World War I. The Mayor also mentioned that the Waukegan American Legion post is named for Homer Dahringer who was killed in action in WWI.


Waukegan Fire Chief George Bridges gave the benediction.


Dignitaries included (left to right): Judge Charles Smith, 7th Ward Ald. Lisa May, 9th Ward Ald. Ann Taylor, 5th Ward Ald. Edith Newsome, 2nd Ward Ald. and veteran Patrick Seger, City Clerk Janet Kilkelly, Mayor Sam Cunningham, Fire Chief George Bridges, Deputy City Clerk David Patterson, Director of Public Relations David Motley, Police Chief Wayne Walles, and Fire Captain and veteran Matthew Burleson.


Photos courtesy of City of Waukegan and Waukegan Main Street Promotional Team.


Watch the full ceremony here.

Annual Meeting 2018 Wrap-up

#Downtown Waukegan- A new era was ushered in this past Tuesday as we introduced our new Executive Director, Josh Beadle, at our Annual Meeting! The Annual Meeting was held at City Hall inside of Council Chambers and lunch was catered by 17 North!  Some of the guests included 7th Ward Alderman of Waukegan Lisa May, Teddy Anderson of the Waukegan Park District, Selina- Gomez-Beloz of the Waukegan Public Library, Dawn Simerly of the City of Waukegan Chamber of Commerce, and Mayor Sam Cunningham just to name a few.

Three Waukegan Main Street executive directors! Newly named Josh Beadle is flanked by former directors Teddy Anderson and Jane Ferry

7th Ward Ald. Lisa May has been an avid supporter of Waukegan Main Street for years, putting her energy behind it as a Board Member for years.

Mayor Sam Cunningham welcomes the new Waukegan Main Street Executive Director, Josh Beadle! The City and Waukegan Main Street have had a strong partnership for years and look forward to continuing to build on it.

Heart of the City Executive Director, Scott McLellan sits with City of Waukegan Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Dawn Simerly at the Waukegan Main Street Annual Meeting.

In case you weren’t able to make it, check out the meeting here!

We look forward to continuing to work together for a safe, fun and active downtown! Onward and upward!

Wine & Art Stroll 2018 was a success in the Downtown District!

#ExploreWaukegan- Fall was in the air last Saturday in the Downtown Arts & Entertainment District, but it didn’t stop our members and visitors from enjoying our 11th Annual Wine & Art Stroll 2018!! On behalf of the Waukegan Main Street Board of Directors we would like to thank the Business District for participating and would also like to thank our vendors and the talented musicians! We also like to thank you for coming out and #EnjoyWaukegan !!

College of Lake County Lakeshore Campus was a participant again this year! The group in the next picture enjoyed the LIVE music and tasty appetizers at CLC Lakeshore!

The place was hoppin’ at Tina Sellers Insurance!


The Band 7501 warmed up the participants walking by Madison Street Plaza.


Blue Wave offered jewelry created using Lake Michigan beach glass outside of A Cuban Experience.


Judith Garcia Realty was the perfect starting point at Jack Benny Plaza.


Patricia Collection sold handmade jewelry in Jack Benny Plaza.


Browski Creations set up shop in Jack Benny Plaza.


Sipos & Young entertained at Dandelion Gallery.


Chili at ArtPark – Waukegan was AWESOME!!!


We appreciate any feedback you have on this event please email


Busy Day in the Downtown District!

Last week our friends at Heart of the City celebrated opening their new location at 114 South Genesee Street, Suite 303 with a Ribbon Cutting and Open House! The City of Waukegan Chamber of Commerce hosted the event as part of their monthly Business After Hours Networking Event! The food and alcohol were sponsored by Green Town Tavern in the Downtown District.


Later that same evening Waukegan Main Street partnered with Brandon Ewing- Waukegan School Board and Vance Wyatt- Lake County Board Member District 14 to host Millennials Connected- Forward Thinkers! The event was held at The Harbor’s Edge and featured an evening of over 150 millennials networking and connecting! Music was provided by DJ Smooth and Step 7501 Band! Thanks to Quonset Pizza for providing the raffle giveaways. Stay tuned for the next Millennials Forward event!

A Gorgeous Night in Downtown Waukegan at the Beach!

Smiling faces all around this past Friday for the 2nd Annual Waukegan Night Out/ Touch-A-Truck! The combined event was sponsored by the Waukegan Police and Fire Departments and the Waukegan Park District and included heavy machinery, a K-9 demonstration, bounce houses, face painting, and a tug-of-war between Waukegan Police and Gurnee Police Departments.

The weather was perfect and the beach was filled with children and families!

In addition to all the other fun, Chuck and Stacy Castellanos and their companion Finn reenacted French fur traders landing on the beach took place.  They took the time to explain what the fur traders did, that the canoe is a birch-bark replica of the canoe traders would have used in the 1600s, and discussed the danger and excitement of canoeing on the big lakes.  To close the evening, Zootopia was shown on the beach and free popcorn was provided by the Waukegan Park District!

Thanks to all of the vendors that came out to make this great evening successful! We look forward to seeing you all at this great family event next year! Photos courtesy of Explore Waukegan and Waukegan Park District.