Shopping for bargains in ideal weather is a hard combination to pass up. Such was the case June 24 and 25 at Glencoe's Annual Sidewalk Sale, organized by the Glencoe Chamber of Commerce.
For two sun-kissed days, prospective shoppers perused tables holding items being sold by approximately 40 businesses, all lined up outside on main downtown Glencoe streets. The merchandise included clothes and books, as well as food.
With musical recordings playing in the background from the North Shore Chamber Arts Ensemble, Chamber Executive Director Sally Sprowl explained why the two-day sale has been a part of the village's tapestry for what she believed to be the last 30 years.
"It brings people to downtown and gives merchants an opportunity to turn over their merchandise faster," Sprowl said.
Many of the shops come back year after year to greet previous customers and try to entice new ones.
Linda Karm, the owner of Northbrook's Such a Deal, had a 50 percent off sign over her collection of women's clothing and accessories, as she and two assistants talked with patrons.
"It's fabulous and Glencoe is my top customer base," Karm said. "We do well here and everyone is happy to see us. These are some of my most loyal customers."
Not far from Karm, Iris Baer, the proprietor of Northbrook's Gemuine Boutique, was selling jewelry, purses and semi-precious stones to passersby. The two-day sale means a lot of standing for Baer and her assistants, but she said she still enjoys the event where she has been active for three decades.
"My customers of 30 years wait all year to see me," Baer said, adding that the weather at this year's event was "the best weather we ever had."
Family Services of Glencoe was also on hand, with its own table, to explain its mission.
"We like to be in the community," the social service agency's executive director, Bill Hansen, said. "And let them know what we are about."
The customers on June 25 included Jami Walk of Highland Park, who likes to bargain shop and has been a frequent visitor to the sale in years gone by. She said she would like to see some modifications in future years.
"I would like to see more women's boutique items, and it would be nice to have water out. It is hard to walk when it is so hot," Walk said.
Also coming from Highland Park was Bonnie Bomberg, who was looking at outdoor tablecloths.
"There are great values here," Bomberg said. "I used to come for children's clothing. Now I come by to see there is anything that grabs my interest."
Daniel I. Dorfman is a freelance reporter for Pioneer Press