River Grove businesses to offer DJ, magic show during weekend sidewalk sale

A day of fun activities and bargains — that’s how a group of River Grove businesses decided to show their appreciation to their customers.

About 20 businesses that make up Thatcher Woods Shopping Center, located at Thatcher and Belmont avenues, will be participating in the center’s first annual Customer Appreciation Event from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Aug. 23. The stores will bring their bargains outside for sidewalk sales and offer discounts inside their stores, as well.

The shopping center parking lot will be filled with activities like a DJ, a magic show, an ice cream social, face painting and other activities.

Anna Maria Kowalik, assistant vice president and regional property manager for Inland Real Estate Corporation, which owns the shopping center, said they all wanted to come up with a creative way to give back to the community.

“It was a mutual decision between the businesses and property management,” she said. “The various businesses inside the center said they would like to set aside some activities that were both family-friendly and promote sidewalk sales. It’s a way of being good community partners.”

She said that she hopes those who come spread the word to others to take advantage of the great sales and fun activities.

“Seeing the sheer enjoyment of the family and kids, that the kind of excitement we like to generate,” she said.

The shopping center has been through major changes like the departure of Dominick’s, an anchor store, and another large spot sitting empty. She said that has changed for the better now that the former Dominick’s store has a new grocer moving in.

“The interior has been completely demolished and they will be starting construction soon,” she said. “They are also working on a name and how they will present themselves to the community. They are a very experienced small grocer with a record of success.”

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