Don’t forget what’s in our own backyard

Staff Writer
Chillicothe Times-Bulletin

It seems like some things should be second nature, but they are not. Chillicotheans get caught up in the hustle and bustle of life, and like many Americans we lose sight of what is right in front of our noses.

Take for example a recent article in Midwest Living highlighting the Illinois River Road National Scenic Byway. It runs through Rome and right through town, and yet many of us do not realize what it can bring to us — visitors, and dollars, for our community through gas, food and possibly lodging. One of our own businesses, Happy Thought Coffee, was named a place to eat — what an honor!

And yet the question remains, have you eaten or shopped there?

Have you traveled any part of the byway to see the beauty in which we are surrounded?

This Friday, dressed up little ones will run around the business districts of town collecting candy from the shops during Merchants’ Trick or Treat. Will you have patronized even half of the businesses you will stop in with your kids to get free candy?

We could go on and on about the events and businesses that offer Chillicotheans items, services or fun.

In less than a month, the 61st annual Santa Claus parade will march down Second Street. Will you be in attendance?

On a regional level, Peoria’s 123rd Santa Claus parade, the longest-running parade in the country, will be Nov. 26, almost a week after Chillicothe’s Santa Claus parade.

East Peoria’s Festival of Lights also kicks off around the holiday season, featuring a parade and a drive-through event to see the floats made up of many Christmas lights throughout the holiday season.

The 2-mile electric drive was voted as a favorite stop by the American Bus Association. The event draws more than 75,000 visitors from around the United States.

If that is not enough, there are many more events and businesses worthy of Chillicotheans exploring, both in town and in the area.