Thyme Square one of 28 small businesses recognized as part of Illinois Office of Tourism’s Illinois Made Program

Thyme Square building

The exterior of the historic Schott building, home to Thyme Square Bakery & Cafe. | David Adam

CHICAGO — The Illinois Office of Tourism on Monday announced 28 new small businesses, or “Makers,” have been recognized as part of the Illinois Made program. One of those businesses is Thyme Square Bakery & Cafe, 615 Hampshire.

The program recognizes each business as a hidden gem for locals and visitors to discover, offering unique products and experiences all around the state.

Thyme Square, owned by Cory and Erica Shupe, features fresh, seasonal and locally-sourced products. All dishes are prepared in-house and feature the finest foods the Quincy area has to offer. The cafe opened in 2010 at 500 Hampshire, then moved to the historic Schott building in October 2016.

The Illinois Made program, launched in 2016, inspires residents and visitors to discover the people, products and authentic experiences created by one-of-a-kind small businesses found in every region of the state.  This newest class of Makers is being announced in time to highlight for consumers even more options to buy local products during this year’s holiday shopping season.

“Illinois is home to a diverse, vibrant small business community which attracts visitors from across the country and around the world. Through our Illinois Made program, we celebrate the unique contributions of small businesses across our communities and provide people yet another reason to explore all aspects of Illinois,” Gov. JB Pritzker said in a press release.

The Illinois Made program now features more than 200 Makers from all corners of Illinois.            

“Small businesses are the backbone of Illinois’ economy and offer food, products and experiences that make a visit to all regions of Illinois special,” said Sylvia I. Garcia, acting director of the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity, which includes the Illinois Office of Tourism.

The 2021 Illinois Makers reflect a wide range of business types – from restaurants, breweries and wineries, to retail, farms and orchard businesses – which coincide with the latest trends in tourism, including artisan products and those offering outdoor experiences for visitors. More than half (18) of the businesses represented on this year’s list are owned by women or people of color.

The Illinois Office of Tourism promotes Illinois Made makers through inclusion in both its new road trip itineraries and Enjoy Illinois travel magazine, events, seasonal campaigns and the annual Illinois Made Holiday Gift Guide that encourages consumers to support small businesses throughout the holiday shopping season.

The Illinois Made program builds on the state’s efforts to highlight small businesses as a visitor attraction, to celebrate its diverse communities and to boost tourism activity to support local economies statewide.

The Illinois Office of Tourism encourages residents to nominate businesses for the Illinois Made program on a year-round basis. IOT reviews nominations and selects businesses based on the criteria for the program along with local business representation across the state. To nominate a business for the program, click here.
     
To learn more about Illinois Made visit: EnjoyIllinois.com/IllinoisMade

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