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updated: 8/12/2011 1:04 AM

Tour downtown Elgin bars during pub crawl

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  • Downtown Neighborhood Association volunteer Victor Gonzalez, left, sells Pub Crawl passports and lanyards at the entrance to the Martini Room, 161 E. Chicago St., during last year's Downtown Elgin Pub Crawl.

      Downtown Neighborhood Association volunteer Victor Gonzalez, left, sells Pub Crawl passports and lanyards at the entrance to the Martini Room, 161 E. Chicago St., during last year's Downtown Elgin Pub Crawl.
    Courtesy of Elgin DNA

  • The Reverends will be one of the musical groups featured at Friday's Downtown Elgin Pub Crawl.

      The Reverends will be one of the musical groups featured at Friday's Downtown Elgin Pub Crawl.
    Courtesy of Brandon Couture

  • The Reverends will be one of the musical groups featured at Friday's Downtown Elgin Pub Crawl.

      The Reverends will be one of the musical groups featured at Friday's Downtown Elgin Pub Crawl.
    Courtesy of Brandon Couture

  • Elgin Public House, 219 E. Chicago St., will be one of the stops on Friday's Downtown Elgin Pub Crawl.

      Elgin Public House, 219 E. Chicago St., will be one of the stops on Friday's Downtown Elgin Pub Crawl.
    Courtesy of Elgin DNA

 
By Rafael Guerrero
rguerrero@dailyherald.com

No plans yet for the weekend? How about a night out on the town Friday, Aug. 12.

The Downtown Neighborhood Association of Elgin is having its annual Downtown Elgin Pub Crawl as visitors move from one bar to the next starting at 8 p.m.

Last year, between 1,000 and 1,500 people attended the crawl, said Jason Pawlowski, the association's promotions coordinator.

The pub crawl will feature eight bars, down from 10 last year, as the other two locations went out of business in the past year. Each bar will offer different specials and promotions. For a $10 donation at the door, visitors also will be entered into a raffle for a grand prize of $500.

People who visit at least five of the eight bars will receive a second raffle ticket into the grand prize drawing. Each bar also will offer its own separate raffle prizes for $1 each.

Lesley LaRock, manager of Elgin Public House, said the crawl is a great event that fully captures the revitalized downtown area at its best. Elgin Public House has participated in the crawl since its beginning.

"It is a lot of people just having fun and having a great time out," LaRock said.

Donations benefit the DNA, an organization vital to the continued development of downtown Elgin. The crawl, Pawlowski said, has been effective in raising money.

"I think we have found a model that works well for us," he said.

Despite the large number of attendees, Pawlowski said the crowds were well behaved.

Sue Olafson, Elgin Police public safety communication official, said no extra officers are deployed into the downtown streets on pub crawl night. The Elgin Police Department does advise any motorists in the area that evening to be on the lookout for an increase in pedestrian traffic.

"Everything is incorporated through the normal downtown detail we normally provide," Olafson said.

Participants can now start at any of the eight bars, easing the flow of traffic from one location to the next and, Pawlowski said, "(it) enables people to start at their favorite place and just go on from there."

Each visitor will be given a route to follow from the first stop onward. Local musicians will be entertaining the crowds along various street corners downtown.

In the event of a rainout, the pub crawl will be held Saturday.

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