This year, I find myself more thankful than ever as Thanksgiving approaches. I am looking forward to spending time with family and friends and focusing on what is important in life. One of the things on my gratitude list this year is living in Oak Park.
I’ve come to know and be quite fond of many of the small businesses in the area this year and I love the vibrancy they bring to the community. If you’re anything like me, and I hope for your sake that you are far more organized, you need a little bit of last-minute assistance with your Thanksgiving meal preparations. Here are some of my favorite places that double as holiday heroes.
If you’re still looking to get a dessert for your table this week, Spilt Milk on Oak Park Avenue has baked extra pies for those of us who forgot to order ahead. Pick up a delicious pie or pastry at the bakery (located on Oak Park Avenue) today or Wednesday. I recommend getting there early to make sure you have one of their tasty treats on Thanksgiving.
If savory is more your thing, Carnivore Oak Park (located on Pleasant Street) has farm fresh pasture-raised turkeys available. I hear that they are going fast! The shop is also selling their famous Thanksgiving sides. Big Guys Sausage Stand, another local favorite, has delicious catering packages available. Pick up a full turkey dinner including sides and desserts from Big Guys. Anyone else hungry yet?
If you are preparing for Black Friday shopping, make sure to shop local! The Shopper’s Reward Program is still in full swing for Downtown Oak Park businesses. Save your receipts! You can earn $50 in rewards when you spend $25 or more at 7 or more businesses in the area and hit the grand total of $500 or more. You can view the full list of participating business here. Oak Park is also making it easier to shop local this year with free parking for up to two hours at pay-by-plate stations and marked meters in the downtown area from November 23rd (Black Friday) through December 22nd. On Saturdays, the Oak Park parking garages will be free for up to two hours as well.
No matter where you are, what food your serve, or which stores you shop at, I hope you have the best Thanksgiving yet. Stay safe on the roads and remember to be kind to one another as we all navigate the holiday season.