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*** UPDATED x1 *** Question of the day: 2022 Golden Horseshoe Awards

Monday, Nov 28, 2022 - Posted by Rich Miller

* The holiday season means two things on this ol’ blog: 1) Fundraising for Lutheran Social Services of Illinois; and 2) our Golden Horseshoe Awards.

From Mariah Heinz Wiggins at LSSI…

At LSSI we are turning our focus to Christmas! We are so grateful for your support over the years, and your online fundraisers in recent years have made a HUGE difference in our efforts to provide gifts and meet holiday needs for every child and family we serve. I was just looking at your page from last year which raised over $20k in maybe 2 weeks. So incredible. We cannot thank you enough.

The thanks should really go to y’all, not me. The kids we buy presents and winter coats and other needs for are served by LSSI’s Foster Care Services. They’re good people doing a great service for children who need it and we get to play a role in that.

I quietly opened up the donation page last week and without much fanfare we’ve already raised $1,200. As soon as we hit $2K, I’ll donate a matching amount. So, please, click here and help out the kids.

* On to the question. Because of the pandemic, it’s been a while since we’ve voted on these topics…

    * Best session restaurant

    * Best session tavern/hangout

As always, do your very best to vote in both categories and make sure to explain your votes or they will not count. Thanks and have fun!

Also, after you’ve cast your ballot, maybe click here and donate to LSSI. Let’s help those kids!

*** UPDATE *** Wow, that was quick! I just kicked in my pledged $2,000. Thanks!

       

24 Comments
  1. - Close Observer - Monday, Nov 28, 22 @ 12:21 pm:

    Boone’s for both. Sheer proximity.


  2. - misfire - Monday, Nov 28, 22 @ 12:23 pm:

    Restaurant: Vele. If you’re willing to head west it’s the best meal in central illinois and staff work is always superb.

    Hangout: (I like the modification here) gonna say ABDI. whenever you’re their guest those guys make you feel like part of the family.


  3. - FIREDup! - Monday, Nov 28, 22 @ 12:25 pm:

    Restaurant - Saputo’s, always and forever. It’s a classic and you’ll see anyone and everyone.

    Hangout - JP Kelley’s. Always a good mix.


  4. - MisterJayEm - Monday, Nov 28, 22 @ 12:26 pm:

    More than the falling leaves or the colder weather or the calendar itself, the return of the Golden Horseshoe Awards is when I know that the old year is winding down.

    – MrJM


  5. - Captain, Oh Captain - Monday, Nov 28, 22 @ 12:31 pm:

    Session restaurant: Loukinens. Good food and always accommodating with group size adjustments.

    Session hangout/tavern: Butternut Hut is always a great nightcap location.


  6. - Arsenal - Monday, Nov 28, 22 @ 12:32 pm:

    For restaurant, Loukinen’s. It’s a good place to show off fine dining for out-of-towners.

    For hangout, Boone’s. Mike Z has been working very hard to make everyone feel at home there. In my case, it’s working.


  7. - Gohawks123 - Monday, Nov 28, 22 @ 12:36 pm:

    I gotta toss out a curveball for best restaurant:
    Magic Kitchen for the sheer fact that it simple hits everytime.

    Best hangout:
    It goes to Jp Kelly’s


  8. - New Day - Monday, Nov 28, 22 @ 12:39 pm:

    Restaurant: Alexander’s Steakhouse. It’s a bit off the beaten path, but the food is great and it’s not expensive. You get fewer statehouse types but still quite a few.

    Hangout: Since the Globe reduced their hours, I’ve been without a go to hangout, but I guess Celtic Mist is the closest. At least the booze is cheap.


  9. - New Day - Monday, Nov 28, 22 @ 12:43 pm:

    Rich,

    What’s the most this annual tradition has generated for LSSI?


  10. - Rich Miller - Monday, Nov 28, 22 @ 12:46 pm:

    ===What’s the most===

    I don’t keep track.


  11. - Give Me A Break - Monday, Nov 28, 22 @ 1:07 pm:

    Moxo. If you want to catch members and or staffers before the crush of the legislative day, Moxo is a must.

    People tend to be receptive to chats while waiting for their order. And, the chats tend to be less formal and free flowing than those at the Statehouse.


  12. - Surly Dan - Monday, Nov 28, 22 @ 1:32 pm:

    Best restaurant: Vele. Everyone on that staff does a tremendous job. Incredible menu. Great creativity and good ambience. Cool place to meet.

    Best tavern: Boone’s, if for no other reason than winning the most improved award. New management has that place running like a song, and they’re very accommodating to the finicky session schedules (and legislator and lobbyist personalities).


  13. - Annonin' - Monday, Nov 28, 22 @ 1:56 pm:

    Turnout here a little lite. Best restaurant is Bernie and Betty’s. Hangout The Hut


  14. - SaulGoodman - Monday, Nov 28, 22 @ 2:18 pm:

    Restaurant: Vele. Best food in town, easily. And don’t miss out on their smoked cocktails. I hate leaving downtown, and was very said to see Vele move across town, but the drive is worth it.

    Hang out: the real answer is my favorite legislator offices, hut ABDI is great. They know how to host great casual gatherings.


  15. - NI You - Monday, Nov 28, 22 @ 2:27 pm:

    Restaurant: Joseph’s - best personal service with as little pretense in town while consistently delivering high quality food, drink, apps and dessert.
    Hang Out: Westwood - if you havent’ been to Westwood’s you haven’t sampled all Springfield has to offer in great bourbon and personalities!!


  16. - Anyone Remember - Monday, Nov 28, 22 @ 2:27 pm:

    Restaurant - Boone’s. Good food, good employees, close.

    Hangout - Celtic Mist. JP’s is very good day to day, but when interest groups members show up en masse and spend the night in local hotels, Celtic is “interesting” (particularly when the fire fighters are there).


  17. - Stuck in Celliniland - Monday, Nov 28, 22 @ 2:34 pm:

    Restaurant (at least for lunch on session days): How about a shoutout to a more convenient option for legislators and state employees. The Howlett cafeteria. Good food and friendly service (and good chicken on Wednesdays and fish on Fridays), and burgers and other grill items made to order.

    Not a liquor drinker or bar goer (plus at least one loved one with a serious history of alcoholism), so I will abstain on the tavern vote.


  18. - A Parent - Monday, Nov 28, 22 @ 3:22 pm:

    Restaurant: Fritz’s. The food is good and the seating is perfect for working dinners

    Bar: Gin Mill: Good setting, service & music.


  19. - MemberBerries - Monday, Nov 28, 22 @ 3:51 pm:

    Restaurant: Fritz’s. Great for large parties down to small family events. Best ice cream drinks in town.

    Bar: JP Kelly’s. Family owned which trickles down to staff and customer service. Perfect for private events and an overall base camp. Clique’s Wednesday night karaoke and great ownership is noteworthy too.


  20. - Opening Date - Monday, Nov 28, 22 @ 4:12 pm:

    Restaurant: unfortunately, one doesn’t exist. What’s happening in the Capital City? Is anyone in the city government paying attention to the downtown area? Holy moly it’s not good.
    Bar: Boone’s because it’s close and the new ownership is good.


  21. - Here for the laughs - Monday, Nov 28, 22 @ 4:42 pm:

    Restaurant: Joseph’s menu is superb, top to bottom. Shout out to Indigo for accommodating last minute groups and their food is solid.

    Hangout: Boone’s is a great place.


  22. - NorthSideNoMore - Monday, Nov 28, 22 @ 4:48 pm:

    Saputos for food
    JP Kelly for drinks socializing


  23. - fs - Monday, Nov 28, 22 @ 5:22 pm:

    Restaurant: Loukinens (sp?) on 4th. Tucked away a bit from all of the other downtown places, but still convenient and close location, with great food and a decent sized event space for larger lunch or dinner gatherings.

    Bar: JP Kelly’s. A few of the longtime downtown establishments have bitten the dust or significantly reduced hours the last few years, and JP’s has provided a safe landing space for some of those openhanded by the loss of the other traditional spots. And it’s done so while continuing to provide a true bipartisan atmosphere for both fundraising events and general happy hour socializing.


  24. - fs - Monday, Nov 28, 22 @ 5:25 pm:

    *orphaned, not openhanded. Dang autocorrect.


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