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Ball: Summer brings cruise nights and farmers market

Summer is an exciting time for the Cary-Grove Area Chamber of Commerce.

Two of the largest events of the year started the first week of June. Every Wednesday evening, the chamber brings Cary Cruise Night to West Main Street from 6 to 8 p.m. Classic cars, roadsters, convertibles and more line the street for a great evening of family fun.

Cary Cruise Night’s presenting sponsor this year is 103.9 The Fox radio station. A team from the station will be on site each week with contests, giveaways and, of course, playing their station’s terrific music.

Every week participating theme cars will be judged with winners announced at 8 p.m. Visit the chamber’s website,, for the full schedule of theme nights and other special happenings.

For the fourth year in a row, summer also brings the Cary Farmers Market. Recently named “One of the Best” in the Northwest Herald’s “Best of the Fox Reader’s Choice” contest, the Cary Farmers Market is from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. every Sunday. The market is held in the west end of the Cary Metra station commuter lot by the Maplewood baseball fields. There is plenty of parking in the lot, and the market also is easily accessible by bicycle.

You can visit the market for all your mealtime needs – much of which is produced right here in McHenry County. Market vendors and products include meat and eggs from R Family Farm and fresh locally grown produce from Middlebury Farm, Jeffery Farm and Foley Farms. The market has fresh flowers for your home and plant starts for your garden. Cheese, jam, bread, Michigan blueberries, mushrooms, granola and dips are available as well. Feeling hungry? Try a made-to-order, wood-fired pizza. Other products include handmade soaps, scarves and environmentally friendly household cleaners.

There is something for everyone at the Cary Farmers Market. New items arrive as the season goes on, so don’t miss the opportunity to buy great-tasting food and have the satisfaction of supporting local producers. The first Sunday of each month the chamber hosts a special promotional market with additional vendors, raffles and free reusable shopping bags for the first 100 guests.

According the Illinois Department of Agriculture, “If every household in Illinois dedicated just $10 of their weekly grocery budget toward the purchase of Illinois fruits and vegetables, $47 million would be reinvested in the Illinois economy.” That’s $47 million a week or more than $2.4 billion a year. You can pledge to buy $10 of Illinois products online at Then bring your $10 to the Cary Farmers Market and stock up on everything you need for the week. You’ll be glad you did.

• • •

The 13th Annual Cary-Grove Chamber Golf Outing will be Aug. 22 at Chalet Hills Golf Club, 943 Rawson Bridge Road, Oakwood Hills. Bag drop, breakfast and registration starts at 7:30 a.m. The shotgun-start outing with scramble format starts at 9 a.m. This year’s theme is “Chamber in Paradise” and participants are encouraged to wear Jimmy Buffett-style attire.

• Brad Ball is executive director of the Cary-Grove Area Chamber. Reach him at 847-639-2800 or

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