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The 5th Annual Andersonville Honors Nominations Are In! Vote For Your Favorite Area Businesses

Honors-1The finalists have been named and the party arrangements have been made!

When the 5th Annual Andersonville Honors Gala takes place on March 31 at 6:30 p.m., 11 categories of businesses and/or community members will be recognized as part of a silent auction and in addition to a theater performance at The Neo-Futurarium, 5153 N. Ashland Ave., in Edgewater.

All you need to do is vote for your favorite business and or organization on the list. Voting for the award winners begins at noon today and will continue until noon on March 4.

“The Andersonville Honors started in 2011,” said Ellen Shepard, executive director of the Andersonville Chamber of Commerce. This will be her last Honors event before her planned departure in March. 

“It grew out of an event we used to have called the Andersonville Benefit Bash. Both events are fundraisers for the non-profit Andersonville Development Corp. and its signature program, eco-Andersonville. We shifted to an ‘honors’ event because we wanted the opportunity to celebrate what makes Andersonville great: Its unique local businesses and dedicated, engaged community members.”

Tickets are $50 per person. Proceeds will benefit the Andersonville Development Corp., a 501(c)3 organization that will soon be renamed the Andersonville Sustainable Community Alliance; and the program’s eco-Andersonville programs.

To purchase tickets, visit here.

“(Winners will) receive a plaque that they can be proud of for years to come,” said Sarah Dandelles, the Andersonville Chamber of Commerce’s events and fundraising director who is in her first year of organizing the Honors event. She was hired in June 2015. “We also see many businesses use their hard-won ‘titles’ in their own marketing and social media. It’s a great form of recognition.”

The Andersonville Honors Gala is sponsored by the Andersonville Development Corp. and The Neo-Futurists. The theater is the 2014 winner of the Honors Gala’s Arts Organization of the Year Award and a recent National Endowment for the Arts grantee.

As part of the awards evening, The Neo-Futurists will present its one-of-a-kind, Andersonville-themed “Too Much Light Makes The Baby Go Blind,” the theater troupe’s groundbreaking and ever-evolving attempt to perform 30 Plays in 60 Minutes. The production has continued for 27 years and is the longest-running show in Chicago theater history.

The event will also include food, beer, wine, coffee and spirits.

Here are the awards and the finalists:

Welcome Addition Award, for the best new Andersonville business opened in 2015: Candyality, 5225 N. Clark St.; Replay, 5356 N. Clark St.; Pastoral & Appellation Restaurant, 5212 N. Clark St.; Hot “G” Dog, 5009 N. Clark St.; Cantina 1910, 5025 N. Clark St.; Pork Shoppe, 5721 N. Clark St.

Good Neighbor Award, for the business that best exemplifies the spirit of community support and customer service: Women & Children First Bookstore; Replay; Painted Light Photography + Framing Gallery; Simon’s Tavern; Alley Cat Comics; Cheetah Gym; Swedish American Museum; and Hamburger Mary’s, Mary’s Attic, and Andersonville Brewing Co.

Arts Organization of the Year Award, for the organization or business that supports the arts and artists and contributes to the cultural fabric of Andersonville: Rivendell Theater Ensemble; Swedish American Museum; Neo-Futurists; The pH Comedy Theater; and Vignette Vignette.

Services Organization of the Year Award, for the top organization or business in the service industry: Nail Palette; Ravenswood Chiropractic & Wellness Center; Sir Spa; Re: Chiropractic + Wellness; and North Side Federal Savings and Loan.

Best Place to Eat Award, for the best dining establishment in Andersonville: Anteprima; Vincent; Appellation; Cantina 1910; and Replay.

Best Place to Drink Award, for the best drinking establishment in Andersonville: Farraguts; Marty’s Martini Bar; Elixir; Hopleaf; and Replay Andersonville.

Best Place to Shop Award, for the best retail business in Andersonville: Milk Handmade; Women & Children First Bookstore; Alley Cat Comics; Brown Elephant; and Andersonville Galleria.

Hidden Gem Award, for your favorite business that is a little “off the beaten path” in Andersonville: First Slice; Taste of Lebanon; Rivendell Theater Ensemble; Woolly Mammoth; Painted Light Photography + Framing Gallery; and Re: Chiropractic + Wellness.

Other awards to be presented on March 31 include:

Eco-Andersonville Award, honoring a business or organization that has invested the most to reduce its carbon footprint. The recipient of this award will be chosen by the Eco-Andersonville committee of the Andersonville Sustainable Community Alliance (Andersonville Development Corp.)

Mathiasson Community Service Award, established to honor Kurt Mathiasson, affectionately known as the “Mayor of Andersonville.” The founder of the Swedish American Museum, Mathiasson died in 1999. The award seeks to honor an individual who most exemplifies his devotion and commitment to the ongoing vitality of the Andersonville community. Nominations will come from the community at large; the Andersonville Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors will select the winner.

Additionally, the Honors event will also include an Audience Choice Award chosen by that night’s audience members. The award will include a $250 cash prize donated by Bridgeview Bank, the event sponsor, Dandelles said.

For more information about the Honors Gala, visit here.

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