Party raises money for path, downtown profile for Yorkville
By Steve Lord email@example.com April 16, 2012 6:34PM
Singer, songwriter John Conover plays on the patio during a 'Push for the Path' festival fundraiser at the Cobblestone Bakery and Bistro in downtown Yorkville on Friday, April 13, 2012. | Steven Buyansky~Sun-Times Media
Updated: May 19, 2012 8:07AM
YORKVILLE — Lynn Dubajcik couldn’t suppress her happiness.
Friday the 13th turned out to be a lucky day for two of her biggest causes: the Push for the Path effort to raise money for the Kennedy Road bike trail; and downtown redevelopment.
Dubajcik, director of the Yorkville Economic Development Corp., was one of about 100 people who turned out for the Spring Fling Concert designed to raise money for Push for the Path, a not-for-profit organization.
As of Monday, officials were unsure just how much money they raised, although they did know they sold about 100 tickets at $40 a ticket. But there were other fundraising opportunities at the event, including a raffle for an iPad. ChiroOne chiropractors did evaluations at the event, and sold first-time appointments for $20, which were donated to Push for the Path.
In addition, over the weekend, Bella-gia Boutique, which is inside The Prom Shop in Oswego, donated its Saturday and Sunday receipts from people who mentioned Push for the Path.
Friday’s event gave Cobblestone Bakery and Bistro, at Van Emmon Street and Route 47 in Yorkville, a chance to show off its great food, supreme baked goods and wine tasting. There was some of all that and music to boot at the fundraiser.
“This is overwhelming, but good,” said Alyssa McCue in the midst of the crowded wine tasting Friday night. “To see the whole community here, together … ”
Alyssa is the daughter of Darlene McCue, who in 2009 was hit by a car and killed as she biked along Kennedy Road near her house. While there had been calls for a bike trail along Kennedy before that — a church school, baseball fields and a park and several subdivisions reside all line the road, which does not even have a sidewalk — Darlene McCue’s death increased calls for it.
The city has a $1.4 million grant coming from the state to build the $1.7 million trail. But the city must pay about a $350,000 match, and the City Council was hesitant to accept the grant because it did not want to incur the local cost.
Push for the Path was formed to raise money privately to pay that local grant.
Dubajcik, who also is a board member for Push for the Path, was happy about attendance at the fundraiser, as well as excited for what it meant for downtown redevelopment.
Cobblestone is in the heart of downtown and at ground zero for its redevelopment. It is one of four major properties included in the development plan put together and executed by Imperial Investments. Near to that is the new whitewater facility along the river which is attracting canoeing and kayaking enthusiasts from throughout the Midwest, and a new coffeehouse and ice cream parlor nearby.
The ice cream parlor, White Water Ice Cream, already has held a fund-raising day for Push for the Path.
Friday night was a trial balloon of sorts for another reason. Officials closed off Van Emmon Street, and the Spring Fling Concert was held outside on Cobblestone’s new porch. The rain held off long enough for the music, and Yorkville was able to see if such a festival-style event, with a street closed, is doable.
“This gives us a chance to see how it works,” said Dubajcik … with a smile.