The Downtown Neighborhood Association (DNA) of Elgin’s third annual edition of Downtown Madness – the DNA’s award-winning, month-long, social media driven restaurant and bar promotion returns this March. “Signature dishes” from Elgin area eateries and pubs – both downtown and “crosstown” – will again face off against one other in a March Madness-style bracket tournament where the public chooses the winners round-by-round until a champion is crowned.
The 2013 installment of Downtown Madness: Downtown vs. Crosstown is expanding this year from 16 participating “teams” to a total of 32: 16 Downtown Elgin eateries vs. 16 Crosstown Elgin eateries. Beginning March 14, Downtown and Crosstown bracket entries compete against each other through four rounds of online voting before one finalists each from both sides of the bracket square off in the Championship Round of voting which ends on April 8, the night of the NCAA men’s basketball tournament’s championship game. The winner receives the honor of displaying the Downtown Madness traveling trophy for one year as well as a Blue Level Sponsorship in the 2013 City of Elgin 4th of July Parade.
The Elgin Eat 16 punch card promotion also returns with some new surprises. Throughout the duration of Downtown Madness, voters can pick up Elgin Eat 16 punch card tickets and obtain punches for trying the various “signature dishes” at each participating restaurant. Prizes such as Downtown Elgin gift certificates, Downtown Madness t-shirts and mini basketballs are among the prizes available upon achieving various quantities of Eat 16 punches.
“We’re definitely excited about the changes we’ve made to this year’s Downtown Madness,” said DNA Managing Director Jason Pawlowski. “We know Madness and the Eat 16 punch cards both have an established track record of success for our participating Elgin establishments and we’re hoping for an even more competitive voting atmosphere and more rings at the registers for our businesses over the course of the month-long promotion.”
Last year’s Downtown Madness champion Danny’s Pizza returns to defend their title, competing this year as Danny’s Pizza on Douglas in the Downtown side of the bracket after relocating from 302 McLean Boulevard to 231 Douglas Avenue in downtown Elgin in October 2012.
Other confirmed returning participants from 2012 include 2011 Downtown Madness Champion Elgin Public House, 219 E. Chicago Street, Elgin; Al’s Cafe, 43 DuPage Court, Elgin; Bangkok House and Shanghai Restaurant, 11 Douglas Avenue, Elgin; Colonial Cafe, 600 S. McLean Boulevard, Elgin; Herb’s Bakery, 1020 Larkin Avenue, Elgin; In the Neighborhood Deli, 185 Edison, Elgin; Nick’s Pizza & Pub, 990 S. Randall Road, Elgin; Paul’s Family Restaurant, 1300 Lawrence Avenue, Elgin; Ravenheart Coffee, 176 E. Chicago Street, Elgin; Toom Toom Thai Restaurant, 23 S. Grove Avenue, Elgin; Villa Verone Ristorante Italiano, 13 Douglas Avenue, Elgin; and Walnut Speakeasy, 214 Walnut Avenue, Elgin.
New confirmed participants include Chooch’s Pizzeria, 64 S. Grove Avenue, Elgin; Chorizo Grill, 440 Washington Street, Elgin; Delicia Tropical Cafe, 780 Villa Street, Elgin; Domani Cafe, 109 E. Highland Avenue, Elgin; In the Neighborhood Fresh inside Gail Borden Public Library, 270 N. Grove Avenue, Elgin; JB’s Grill & Bar, 297 S. McLean Boulevard, Elgin; McGruder’s Irish Pub, 1350 E. Chicago Street, Elgin; Mr. C’s Hot Dogs, 1350 E. Chicago Street, Elgin; On the Side Restaurant, 74 S. Grove Avenue, Elgin; Pita Puff, 512 Waverly Drive, Elgin; Sherman Health Cafeteria, 1425 N. Randall Road, Elgin; Tilted Kilt Pub & Eatery, 2300 Bushwood Drive, Elgin; and Wienerville III, 1785 Larkin Avenue, Elgin.
The 2013 Downtown Madness bracket with the complete list of participating Elgin restaurants will be revealed on March 14 in the Downtown Madness Selection Show on the DNA’s YouTube Channel and at the DNA’s brand new Downtown Madness website: www.ElginDowntownMadness.com.
Downtown Madness was honored with a Lt. Governor’s Award for Outstanding Main Street Promotion at the 2011 Illinois Main Street Awards in Galesburg, Illinois.