RACVB’s Forest City Beautiful Keeps on Growing -
Community Foundation of Northern Illinois awards grant to project aimed at beautifying downtown Rockford

January 9, 2016

ROCKFORD, IL — The Rockford Area Convention & Visitors Bureau, in partnership with the River District Association, is proud to announce that they have received a $43,459 grant for the Forest City Beautiful initiative. These funds will go towards the installation of trash receptacles throughout the River District in downtown Rockford to help reduce litter. The grant was awarded by the Dr. Louis and Violet Rubin Fund of the Community Foundation of Northern Illinois’ Sustainable Communities Grants Program.

Forest City Beautiful is a multi-year urban greening program focused on beautifying and revitalizing downtown Rockford, with the goal of improving the quality within the city center. As part of the initiative, RACVB has the responsibility to collaborate with local leaders to plan, install and maintain landscaping throughout downtown. This will be the fourth grant approved for Forest City Beautiful, bringing the total amount awarded to $152,076.

“We see the Forest City Beautiful project as a vital way to revitalize the community through enhancing the physical appearance of the downtown,” Jon Bates, President of the Community Foundation of Northern Illinois, said. “We are encouraged by the success of the project so far and by the commitment made by the RACVB and Rockford Sharefest.”

This initiative has already made many improvements to downtown Rockford with the installation of 75 planters, 9 public art sculptures and directional way-finding signage. Volunteers have served to help install plantings in existing flower beds, clean up walkways and sidewalks and paint light poles, among other tasks to clean several civic spaces. There will also be 5 bistro tables, 13 chairs, 5 benches and trash receptacles placed throughout downtown this spring.

“We are grateful to the Community Foundation and their funders for their continued and deep investment in our region through several organizations. It’s a privilege to work alongside many local partners, volunteers and business owners that think about the big picture and find more ways to improve and sustain downtown Rockford,” said Tana Vettore, director of destination development for the Rockford Area Convention & Visitors Bureau. “A significant amount of progress is made each year to create cleaner and safer gathering spaces that Rockford region residents and visitors continue to use daily.”

About the Community Foundation of Northern Illinois:
The Community Foundation of Northern Illinois has been a regional leader in philanthropy since 1953. CFNIL serves as a catalyst for giving in order to attract, grow, and preserve an endowment for the needs of Northern Illinois. Since its founding, CFNIL has granted more than $60 million for charitable purposes.

The mission of the RACVB is to drive quality of life and economic growth for our citizens through tourism marketing and destination development. www.gorockford.com

The mission of the River District Association is to promote a growing, thriving, prosperous business and residential community in Rockford’s downtown neighborhoods. www.riverdistrict.com

Forest City Beautiful is supported by the generous donations of individuals and organizations in the community. Those interested in donating to the initiative can get more information at www.forestcitybeautiful.com or by calling Tana Vettore at 815.963.8111.


Andrea Mandala, Marketing & Communications Manager: 815.489.1664 or amandala@gorockford.com