Community

Welcome to the Tri-County area!

Whether you are looking for a starter home, an upgrade, to downsize or just looking to make some other type of move I can help you find the perfect place.

The Tri-County area has much to offer with a variety of cities, small town communities, rural properties and more. Take a look today at some of these areas to see for yourself what each is about.

If you are pressed for time or feeling a little overwhelmed by the choices available, contact me to help with your home search. I will notify you when new listings come on the market and help you throughout the entire home buying process.

Select a Community below to continue.

About Peoria

Peoria is more vibrant than ever!  There is always something exciting to do or see.  Whether it is taking in a show, enjoying an outdoor festival, attending a community class, or simply hanging out and enjoying Peoria’s unique culture.  It is the people that make Peoria special.  Peoria has the hospitality you expect in the Midwest and the opportunity for residents to live in the heart of the city, in the country, or in the surrounding communities nearby.  Regardless of which lifestyle you choose, you will be within about 20 minutes driving time of just about everything Peoria has to offer.   As a native of the Peoria area, I have knowledge of many aspects of the area and think it is a great place to live, work, and play!  Please feel free to explore the following resources for additional information and contact me with questions.

“Will it play in Peoria?”

Peoria has become famous as a representation of the average American city because of its demographics and its perceived mainstream Midwestern culture.  The famous phrase, “Will it play in Peoria?” originated in the 1920’s during Peoria’s famed Vaudeville days.  On the Vaudeville circuit, it was said that if an act could succeed in Peoria, it could play anywhere.  This has become a metaphor for whether something appeals to the American mainstream public and Peoria is often used as a test market for new products, services, and public policy polling.

Peoria is home to Fortune 100 companies, as well as, a wide range of companies making progress happen in the region.  Some of these include, Caterpillar, Inc.; Advanced Technology Services; Bradley University; G&D Integrated; Greater Peoria Regional Airport Authority; Illinois Central College; Keystone Steel & Wire; Methodist Medical Center; Morton Metalcraft Company; OSF Saint Francis Medical Center; Peoria Public Schools District 150; Proctor Hospital; XPAC.

Health and Medicine

The healthcare industry accounts for at least 25% of Peoria’s economy.  The city has five major hospitals:  the Midwest Affiliate of St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, Children’s Hospital of Illinois, Methodist Medical Center of Illinois, Proctor Hospital, and OSF St. Francis Medical Center.  In addition, the University of Illinois College of Medicine is located in the city.

Education

Peoria is served by two public K-12 school districts:

  • Peoria Public Schools District 150 is the larger and serves the majority of the city.  District 150 schools include dozens of primary and middle schools, as well as Richwoods High School, Woodruff High School, Manual High School, and Peoria High School (Central), the oldest high school in Illinois. www.psd150.org
  • Dunlap Community Unit School District 323 serves the far north and northwest parts of Peoria that were mainly outside the city before the 1990’s.  District 323 is one of the fastest-growing school districts in Central Illinois, and its excellent reputation is one of the main reasons for Peoria’s growth to the northwest. www.dunlapcusd.net

The Roman Catholic Diocese of Peoria currently runs six schools in the city:  five grade schools and Peoria Notre Dame High School.  Non-denominational Peoria Christian School operates a grade school, middle school, and high school.  In addition, Concordia Lutheran School, Peoria Academy, Christ Lutheran School, and several smaller private schools exist.

Bradley University, Midstate College, the University of Illinois College of Medicine at Peoria, the Downtown and North campuses of Illinois Central College, and the Peoria campus of Robert Morris College are based in the city.

Sports

Peoria is home to the AHL Rivermen, Class A Minor Leagues Baseball team-Peoria Chiefs, and UIF (indoor football)-Peoria Rough Riders. The community also enjoys collegiate basketball with the Bradley University Braves. In 2006, Peoria introduced the Peoria Kings, an expansion franchise in the American Basketball Association. Auto racing fans don’t have to go far to see action at the track. The Peoria Speedway is host to a variety of races and classes. Motorsports fans who prefer two-wheeled competition flock to the Grand National TT Motorcycle Races, one of the nation’s tops held at America’s first dirt track and hosted by the Peoria Motorcycle Club.

It’s Happening in Peoria Heights

The Village of Peoria Heights was incorporated in 1898 and has a population in excess of 7,000.  The Village has a long history of support to the business community.  The Village offers a full array of services characteristic of a modern, urban community.

Peoria Heights Grade School was completed in 2001.  The school accommodates approximately 700 students in grades Pre-Kindergarten through Eigth.  Children receive instruction via a comprehensive curriculum that challenges students, yet meets the unique needs and interests of each child.  Smaller classroom size allows district teachers to provide highly individualized and comprehensive instructional assistance to each student.

Peoria Heights High School is a community landmark, due in large part to its unique exterior and interior “open-space” design.  The school provides for the academic needs of a diverse, yet small student population of about 250 students.  Students may elect to participate in college preparation, vocational career and family management course work that will help them mature as young adults.

Schools  www.phcusd325.net

Library

Since 1936 the Peoria Heights Library has provided the citizens of the area a variety of services and materials.  The library which opened a new facility in 2000 and has over 34,000 items (books, video cassettes, books on tape, periodicals, compact discs, computer software), in addition to public access computers for Internet searching and word processing.  Also offered is reference assistance, federal and state tax forms, fax services, and a photocopier.  The library is a member of the Alliance Library System.

Recreation & Attractions

Tower Park was part of a community revitalization effort that took place several years ago.  The first tower, built on Grandview Drive , was torn down during World War II because of the need for scrap metal.  Since then a new tower has been built and its structure is the only one of its kind in the United States.

A glass elevator can be taken 170 feet to one of three observation decks on the Tower.  These observation decks are located at the top of a one-half million gallon Village water reservoir and each offer a 40-mile panoramic view.  Coin operated telescopes are provided to view the Illinois River Valley.

Forest Park Nature Center

The Forest Park Nature Center is dedicated to the preservation and continued study of animals and plants and is 500-acres of nature preserve.  The center provides visitors the opportunity to hike original Indian trails, enjoy guided tours and natural history exhibits, or find a perfect spot for a picnic.  Park concerts occur throughout the summer.

Grandview Drive

Grandview Drive winds through some of the most breathtaking views of the Illinois River Valley.  With stately mansions and pristine picnic areas proudly nestled throughout, Theodore Roosevelt aptly named it “The World’s Most Beautiful Drive.”  Trolley tours run on Thursday, Friday, and Saturday mornings taking riders along the “drive” and through Peoria’s Averyville areas into downtown Peoria.

Shopping & Dining

Peoria Heights offers a fun-filled shopping district where you can stroll the quaint streets and visit specialty shops and boutiques.  Whether you’re looking for clothing, fun accessories, wine, gourmet food, jewelry, gifts or fine art, you can find it here.

This is the place where hip restaurants receive rave reviews.  From coffee and ice cream to fine dining, culinary masters create a variety of delectable dishes.  Whether you’re looking to have a light snack or lunch or a full-course meal, look no further than Prospect Road in Peoria Heights.

Visit East Peoria

Location

The city of East Peoria has a population of more than 22,000 and the people who live here radiate hard work and community spirit.  It is a city of diversified business, professional and industrial companies.  With year-round navigability, the Illinois River is a major focal point for business and recreation here.

Housing

East Peoria offers the conveniences of a metropolitan area with the pleasures of hometown living.  There are housing options for every taste and budget.  The housing market is active and growing.  Whether you are looking for a traditional home in a quiet neighborhood, a condominium on the waterfront, or a luxury home with many extras, you will be able to find it here.  Some of East Peoria’s most beautiful homes are located on Fondulac Drive.  This 3-mile scenic drive runs along the top of the bluffs and homes located here offer spectacular views of the the Illinois River Valley.

There are also several options for retirement living.  ManorCare at Riverview Senior Living Residences and Mel Hasty Retirement Center are residences designed especially for seniors.

Business & Industry

Business growth in the city has been s

purred by Caterpillar Inc.  As the company has grown, it has moved some operations to other states and countries, causing East Peoria to shift the business focus to retail, tourism and hospitality.  The Par-A-Dice Hotel and Casino has spurred hotel and convention business for the area.  The city also benefits from the gaming revenue, contributing to the development of a first-class marina on the riverfront.

New businesses include Embassy Suites Hotel and adjacent conference center, GEM Tower, Gateway Landing South, GEM Terrace, and the Peoria Area Technology Park.  These businesses provide a bright future for retail, restaurants, tourism, and more in East Peoria.

Education

The first public school in East Peoria was founded in 1870.  The community has never wavered in its commitment and dedication to providing quality education.

District 86 – Serving more than 1,800 students in grades kindergarten through eight, the seven schools in District 86 continue to be “Excellence in Teaching.”  The elementary schools in the district are Armstrong,  Paul Bolin, Glendale, Lincoln, Don Shute, Woodrow Wilson, and Central Junior High.  www.epd86.org

District 85 – This district educates students in grades kindergarten through eight in a single building.   The school is Robein School.  In keeping with the school’s tradition of excellence, students continue to perform above the state average on the ISAT.  The school provides a variety of extracurricular activities for students.  www.robein.org

District 309 – This four-year comprehensive school serves a district that covers 31 square miles.  East Peoria Community High School (EPCHS).  Facilites for education, technology-preparation, sports, and more are housed on campus and at EastSide Centre.  www.epchs.k12.il.us

Illinois Central College (ICC) – This public, comprehensive community college offers the classes that students need in a variety of settings.  Students of all ages receive a quality, affordable education here.  With three campuses and more than 50 off-campus locations, students have more opportunities to learn, advance in their chosen careers, and just have fun.  Both credit and non-credit classes are offered each semester.  www.icc.edu

Recreation & Tourism

EastSide Centre, Spashdown at EastSide Water Park, RiverFront Park, Fondulac Farm Park, Museum and Petting Zoo, Fondulac Golf Course, Quail Meadows Golf Course and Driving Range, Carl Spindler Campground, Carl Spindler Marina, and East Port Marina are some of the locations that provide recreational opportunities in East Peoria.

The Festival of Lights is one of the largest lighted nighttime festivals in the country.  There are many activities associated with this festival each year during the months of November and December.

Other attractions the city offers are Pleasant Hill Antique Mall and the Par-A-Dice Hotel and Casino.  There are more than 650 rooms available in the city’s hotels and motels.

Information obtained from the East Peoria Community Profile & Resource Guide.  For additional information about East Peoria, visit the Chamber of Commerce website at www.epcc.org

Learn about West Peoria

History & Location

The City of West Peoria is a small community with a neighborhood feel.  The city was incorporated in 1993 and is a great city in which to raise a family.  West Peoria is located just minutes from downtown Peoria, but away from the hustle and bustle of city life.  Sandwiched between 2 golf courses and right down the street from Bradley University.  There is easy access to transportation centers, cultural amenities, medical facilities, and quality education.  The city has preserved small-town charm and grace.  Tax rates are lower in West Peoria than Peoria.

West Peoria’s main business districts include N. Western Avenue, W. Farmington Road, and the Sterling/Rohmann Avenue intersection.

Schools  www.psd150.org

Elementary:  Peoria Public School District #150-Whittier School and Woodrow Wilson

Middle:  Peoria Public School District #150-Calvin Coolidge and Sterling Middle School

High:  Peoria Public School District #150-Manual and Peoria Central

Also nearby is St. Mark Catholic School

Post-Secondary:  Bradley University, Illinois Central College, Midstate College, Robert Morris College

Recreation

Situated adjacent to two parks and two golf courses, West Peoria provides the community with green space and a great environment for recreation.  Laura Bradley Park and the Franciscan Recreation Complex, Madison Golf Course and Newman Golf Course all give residents opportunities to enjoy the outdoors and participate in park district programs.

The Franciscan Recreation Complex (FRC) is a multi-purpose recreation center features a full-size gymnasium, a multi-purpose room with kitchenette, a community room, dance studio, soccer field, two baseball fields, a track, and an outdoor playground.  FRC and its facilities are accessible to people with disabilities and the facilities can be rented.

Local Businesses

The City of West Peoria strives to foster economic growth and an improved quality of life by encouraging the creation and attraction of new businesses, the retention and expansion of existing businesses, new job creation, and a more diversified tax base.  Restaurants, shopping, groceries, gas, insurance, social services, salons and more can be found right here in West Peoria.

“Living is best…to the West of Peoria”!

Information provided with reference to the website:  www.cityofwestpeoria.com

Check out Chillicothe

History

Chillicothe was settled around 1830 as Native Americans were leaving.  The original town was laid out in 1834 with the businesses located along Front Street so that goods could be hand carried from the river boats to shops.

Chillicothe was an important river shipping point with farming as the main industry.  Grain was shipped from two elevators by the river.  The prime location on the Illinois River made market hunting and commercial fishing important industries.

In 1854 the Rock Island Railroad arrived and caused movement of the business district to Second Street, a location midway between the railroad depot and the riverfront.  This was also the year the first newspaper was printed.  Public schools opened the next year, a bank in 1868 and a food cannery in 1883.  The Santa Fe Railroad arrived in 1887 and soon started a gravel mine north of town.

The Peoria Automobile Club began in 1913 and built a clubhouse for travelers from Peoria.  Now called Shore Acres Park Clubhouse, it is on the National Registry of Historic Places and the focal point of the Chillicothe Park District.

Today

Chillicothe is located north of Peoria and is part of the Tri-County area.  Chillicothe offers the advantages of a small community such as low taxes, low crime rates, and an excellent school district.

Businesses

Chillicothe consists of many businesses including restaurants, printers, graphic design studios, contractors, architects, real estate agents, attorneys, accountants, insurance agents and financial services.

Schools

Illinois Valley School District #321 provides education services to the Chillicothe and Mossville areas.  Schools within the district include:  www.ivcschools.com

  • South Primary School
  • Mossville Elementary and Junior High School
  • Chillicothe Junior High School
  • Illinois Valley Central High School
  • St. Edwards Catholic School is another option if looking for a private school. www.saintedschool.org

Parks & Attractions

The Chillicothe Park District maintains five parks in the community.  An aquatic park, swimming, tennis, Frisbee golf, and scenic beauty are some of the amenities provided at the various parks.

Other attractions include docks for boat launching on the Illinois River, a recreational area offering camping, swimming and fishing, two historical museums, a community center for health and fitness, a country club golf course and a specialty park dedicated to educating the public on historical farm living and agriculture.

Shopping, Restaurants, and Lodging

Shopping in the Historic Downtown area, the stores on Fourth Street or any of the other locations in town provide a variety of specialty shops rich with atmosphere and gifts from around the globe.  All offer the friendliness you expect to find in a quaint small town.  An abundance of antiques and art are offered at several locations.

Coffee, pizza, prime rib, tacos or anything in between is available throughout the city.

There are two hotels in town, both of which offer comfortable accommodations and moderate room rates.

Information obtained from City of Chillicothe Marketing and Tourism.  For more information about Chillicothe visit the Chillicothe Chamber of Commerce at www.chillicothechamber.com

Explore Dunlap

History of Dunlap

The town of Dunlap was officially established on June 12, 1871 on 40 acres of land owned by Alva Dunlap. The town was originally located on the Rock Island Railroad. The site of his former home is now occupied by the Prospect United Methodist Church. The meeting of the first Dunlap Village Council was on January 7, 1952, and the town petitioned for incorporation on February 19, 1952. The current Village Hall was built in 1995.

A post office has been in operation at Dunlap since 1871. Police services are provided by the Peoria County Sheriff’s Office. The Dunlap Volunteer Fire Department and Rescue Squad was established in 1899.

Schools

Dunlap Community Unit Schools District #323 is one the finest school districts in Illinois.

  • Banner Elementary School (K-5)
  • Dunlap Grade School Grades (K-5)
  • Dunlap High School Grades (9-12)
  • Dunlap Middle School Grades (6-8)
  • Dunlap Valley Middle School Grades (6-8)
  • Hickory Grove Elementary School Grades (K-5)
  • Ridgeview Elementary School Grades (K-5)
  • Wilder-Waite Grade School Grades (K-5)

Recreation

The Dunlap Recreation Association provides baseball, softball, lacrosse and basketball programs for kids in the Dunlap, IL area.  DRA is organized by volunteers and is completely funded by fees, donations, concessions and sponsorships.

Check out Metamora

History

Settlers from New England arrived in the area in the 1830’s. At the time of their arrival, the area was completely forested. They cleared the area to make farms and created the region’s first roads and structures. They originally named their new home Hanover, but the name was changed to Metamora in 1845, because several other towns in Illinois already had that name. It drew its new name from the main character of a popular play of that time period: The Last of the Wampanoags.

As more settlers were lured to Metamora by its fertile soils, the village rose to prominence in central Illinois. Metamora became the county seat of Woodford county in 1843 and held it until 1896. It was during this period that Abraham Lincoln practiced law in the Woodford circuit. Lincoln served in many trials in the Metamora courthouse. His wit, anecdotes, and country charm drew a large audience to his trials. The courthouse still stands and has been preserved as an Illinois state historic site.

Since the days of Lincoln, Metamora has continued to prosper. It is rich in small, local businesses and has some of the best schools in the state. Farming is still the heart of Metamora’s economy. The village continues to cherish its celebrated past by holding traditional dances, re-enactments, and keeping the doors of their historic sites open.

Schools

Choose Your Adventure!

The Metamora Park District was formed in 1967. Since then, the district has addressed the recreational wants and needs of residents. The district has developed a fine system of parks, the jewel of which is the 450-acre Black Partridge Park. This park features areas of sports fields, playground equipment and pavilion facilities. The trail system through the park provides both an opportunity for recreation and to commune with nature. Smaller parks within the district offer playground equipment and sports fields.

  • Black Partridge Park
  • Lincoln Circuit Trail
  • Village Square
  • Schupp Park
  • Brighton Memorial Park
  • Lincoln-Douglas Park

Landmarks

  • Metamora Courthouse
  • Lee Cabin
  • Adlai E. Stevenson I House
  • Villiger Blacksmith Shop
Explore Pekin

History

Robert De La Salle, along with a fleet of canoes and 33 men is believed to be one of the first European explorers to visit the area.  In 1680, his crew constructed a winter refuge in what is now the southeast quarter of Section One in Pekin Township.

In 1829, a County Surveyor named William Hodge laid out what was to become Pekin.  He called it “Town Site”, indicating the land was suitable for settlement.  The town was named Pekin, after China’s City of the Sun – Pekin(g).

Commercial development had begun as early as 1827.  Pekin built its first school in 1831 and the Pekin post office opened in 1832.  By 1837 The community had a school and post office, three stores, two taverns, a church, a ferry service and a railroad, the Pekin and Terminate.  Steamboat trade was also a growing factor in the local economy.

By 1849 the population of Pekin had swelled to 1,500 and residents unanimously agreed to organize under a City charter.

Schools

Pekin Public School District #108 includes the following:  www.pekin.net

Preschool Family Education Center

Primary:  C.B. Smith, Dirksen, Jefferson, Starke, Sunset, and Willow

Intermediate:  Washington and Wilson

Junior High:  Broadmoor and Edison

Pekin Public School District #303 includes the following:  www.pekinhigh.net

High:  Pekin Community High School

Other schools servicing the Pekin area include:

  • Faith Baptist Christian School
  • Good Shepherd Lutheran School
  • Rankin School District #98
  • St. Joseph Catholic School
  • Schramm Education Center

Colleges & Universities

  • Bradley University
  • Eureka College
  • Illinois Central College
  • Illinois State University
  • Monmouth College
  • University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Recreation & Attractions

Pekin is a sports destination for everyone from golf enthusiasts to softball and hockey teams.

There are four golf courses including nationally recognized Lick Creek Golf Course.  If you’re the outdoors type, the Illinois River is ideal for boating, skiing and fishing.  Local lakes such as Powerton Lake produce trophy bass and numerous other types of game fish.  There are several locations available for open hunting also.  For the more active enthusiast, there are several bike trails and the Xtreme Skate Park.  Rockin ‘P Ranch offers horseback riders opportunities for trail rides.

The Dragon’s Dome sports complex gives Pekin an unlimited amount of possibilities to hoste a multitude of sporting events.  The Dome includes indoor soccer and football fields, a textured walking track, pitching machines and batting cages, as well as conference areas available for trade shows, meetings or any other large event.  The outside of the Dome offers four regulation ball diamonds.

The Pekin Park District also offers a wide range of recreational activities for the whole family.   DragonLand Water Park, paddleboats, frisbee golf, and Putt The Magic Dragon Miniature Golf are just a few of the possibilities for fun.

Pekin is home to several annual events and festivals that draw visitors from all over the Midwest including The Marigold Festival, Derby Days, and a Winter Wonderland Festival.

Shopping

Shopping in Pekin means everything from small intimate boutiques to large shopping pavilions and well-known chain stores.  Antiques, crafts, jewelry, specialty gifts and more can be found in Pekin.

For more information visit www.ci.pekin.il.us and www.pekin.net

Sources of information:  Pekin Chamber Of Commerce

Visit Washington

Washington holds a reputation as a vibrant community offering a high quality of life supported by excellent schools, safe neighborhoods, diverse parks and recreation offerings, and a resident population motivated by volunteerism and community involvement. Traditions include the historic downtown square, service oriented businesses, and family friendly amenities. Washington is a fantastic place in which to live and raise a family. It is also a great place to work.

Some Facts and Notes about Washington:

  • Established in 1825 and features a vintage downtown square included as a part of the Original Town in 1839. The square features distinctive shops and cafes that surround a one-third acre park and water fountain at the center of the square.
  • Located just 8 miles east of Peoria, Washington lies on U.S. Route 24 and is within close proximity to Interstates I-74, I-155, and I-39.
  • Has a rapidly growing population of 15,134 persons with an estimated local trade area population of more than 100,000 within a 15-minute drive time. The trade area median age is 35.3 years and average household size is 2.5 persons.
  • The median household income in Washington is $61,583.
  • In the last ten years, Washington saw more new residential development than any other community in Tazewell County with more than 1,500 units under construction.
  • Offers a choice of established, older neighborhoods and new, modern subdivisions throughout the city. The average sale price of a new or existing home in Washington is $152,000, and the average construction value of a new home is $259,000.
  • Prides itself on a high quality of life due to excellent schools, quality public services, self-supporting amenities, safe and friendly atmosphere, and small-town charm.
  • Offers City-owned public water and sewer systems, 24-hour police, fire, and emergency response (911), and other local amenities, such as the library and park districts.
  • Enjoys many active local organizations, including the Chamber of Commerce, Economic Development Commission, Rotary International, Kiwanis, Lions Club, multiple business and neighborhood associations, and more.

Why Choose Washington?

  • A Downtown Square tax increment financing (TIF) district offers renovation and improvement subsidies.
  • A citywide Enterprise Zone offering 100% property tax abatement through 2016, plus sales tax waivers, tax credits, and other incentives.
  • Existing retail and business spaces are available in multiple shopping centers and plazas throughout town. Dozens of acres of developable commercial property with full public utilities are also available.
  • A 50% reduction of all building and zoning fees, and utility connection fees, for properties in the Enterprise Zone.
  • No public site plan review process – most development plans for new commercial construction is reviewed internally by City staff with a quick turnaround time.

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