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Local Businesses Honored at Economic Development Breakfast

Post Date:10/25/2018 9:48 AM
The Village of Mount Prospect’s Economic Development Commission honored three local businesses for their commitment and contributions to the community at the Village’s annual Business Breakfast on Thursday, October 25, 2018.

Lightbox Graphix (1894 S. Elmhurst Rd) was awarded the Budding Business Award, a category for businesses in operations for less than 5 years. Lightbox Graphix is a family-owned, full service design and signage company that located in Mount Prospect in 2016. The owners, Danny and Amy Chiao, are very active in the Mount Prospect Chamber of Commerce and supportive of local charities. They created the “Be A Light” Project as an opportunity for their business friends to collaborate in meeting the needs of the underprivileged by donating 10% of proceeds from all sales. The “Be A Light” Project is designed to increase awareness of those in need and partnering great businesses with great causes.  

“When we started the business two and a half years ago, I wanted to be in the business of making friends, and Mount Prospect has been the perfect spot to do that,” said Danny Chiao. 

Mrs. P and Me (100 E. Prospect Ave) was presented with the Enduring Business Award, awarded to a business in operation for more than 5 years. Mrs. P and Me restaurant has been a downtown landmark in Mount Prospect since it opened in 1977.  Current owner Chris Figaro has operated the restaurant since 2004 and the business has been very active in the Mount Prospect Downtown Merchants Association (MPDMA) (Manager Chris Bozonelos is the current president) and the Mount Prospect Chamber of Commerce.  They have fully supported the MPDMA’s efforts to bring more activities into the downtown district by hosting the pub crawls, progressive dinners and participating in the downtown block party and other festivals. 

The Entrepreneur of the Year award was presented to Esteban and Joy Aguado, owners of Mia’s Cantina Mexican Grill (143 W. Prospect Ave.). The Aguados opened Mia’s Cantina in the downtown district in 2012. They initially participated in the Mount Prospect Entrepreneurs Initiative and were the first start up business to come out of the MPEI program.  They have subsequently opened a second Mia’s Cantina in Downers Grove and will be opening up their third restaurant in Wheeling early next year. The Aguados entrepreneurial spirit has enabled them to succeed and allowed their restaurant to become a favorite destination in downtown Mount Prospect. 

Also during the breakfast, Mount Prospect Community Development Director Bill Cooney gave a presentation on development projects in the Village. “With projects like 20 West, Park Terrace and Prospect Pointe, 2018 has been a solid year for development in the Village. 2019 promises an even higher level of activity,” Cooney stated. “With the value of private investment near $50 million in 2018, the projected amount for 2019 is estimated to be in the range of $150 million.” Cooney explained that the major projects on tap for 2019 include the Maple Street Lofts and Central and Main projects. “The Village is excited to share news of the development projects that are going on throughout the community – south, downtown and Rand Road corridor.”

“Mount Prospect is now benefiting from over 30 years of leg work in Economic Development. We are well poised for the talent and understanding of the marketplace to bring anticipated benefits to fruition here,” said Mayor Arlene Juracek. “It is important for us to share with the business development community our sense of place, convenience, our support of innovation and recognition of contemporary preferences,” Juracek said.

The breakfast and awards were sponsored by the Mount Prospect Economic Development Commission, whose mission is to encourage and facilitate economic growth throughout the Village and to advise the Mayor and Board of Trustees on economic development goals and objectives. The Commission's main functions include business retention, business attraction, and marketing of the Village. The Commission’s membership consists of seven members with chief executive or similar managerial positions of businesses/corporations in the Village, business owners or entrepreneurs, or residents with expertise in business development.
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