Little Lake County parents are active, mobile and always seeking adventure! Sometimes we even traverse outside of our fair county to find family entertainment beyond our borders. Due to popular reader demand, we introduce “Little McHenry County,” a monthly column dedicated to finding fun with our neighbors to the west, written by McHenry County Moms in the know. Explore and enjoy!
Little McHenry County is supported by the Raue Center for the Arts.
If you are looking for a one day getaway in our own backyard, cross the county line in to McHenry County and enjoy Richmond, Illinois. A new generation of entrepreneurs and restaurateurs are joining timeless seasoned business owners to revitalize this historic little town. The downtown is passionate about injecting a new energy into the rustic brick store fronts. And many of the faces behind the cash registers in this tight-knit community are female; in fact 90% of the businesses in Richmond are owned by women! If you are looking for delicious food, a soothing spa, elegant boutiques, and a cozy coffee shop, Richmond is a great place to spend the day.
Gear up for your day on the town with an artisan crafted coffee at Main Street Coffee Co. This newly refurbished ice cream parlor is now a cozy coffee shop bursting with comfy couches and rustic tables. They serve locally roasted Colectivo coffee, mouthwatering sandwiches made with hand-carved meats, and eclectic salads loaded with toppings. Main Street Coffee Co. also supports local artisans by selling locally made handcrafts, soaps, and more.
Main Street Coffee Co.
10321 Main Street, Richmond | (815) 678-4124
Next, start your day off shopping for you and your home. While Richmond is known for its quaint antique shops, there are a few new boutiques with treasures galore. Owner Stephanie Corlett at Revived Creations brings new life to furniture and housewares, giving a new energy to your own home. Her passion is providing families with high quality, affordable, gorgeous furniture. And Stephanie is a mom first and a business owner second, so she understands the needs of a family. She loves to help other families make their dreams come true, and your purchase helps to support her family as well!
Down the block are two new boutiques designed to dress you in style. Finery and Finishes has two locations, on Main and Broadway, and both have handbags, shoes, jewelry and clothes to die for. My favorite part about these twin boutiques is their incredibly knowledgeable and helpful staff who love to help style and dress customers. The owner, Diana, loves the energy that all of the local shop owners bring to Richmond, and her passion for dressing the ladies that enter her doors really shows. She definitely has something for everyone (and loves to help husbands shop for their wives as well). When you are fully decked out, continue strolling up and down the quaint streets and visit a leather shop, chocolatier, gift shops and more. Read how Finery and Finishes is also the perfect place to shop for your family photography sessions, too.
Once your shopping bags are full, stop by one of the many restaurants for a bite to eat. Try the infamous Paisano’s new little sister, Panino’s, for fresh seafood and sandwiches (try the shrimp po’ boy, it’s amazing!), or enjoy a pastry at Sweet Angeline’s Bake Shop next door. And, this November, a new kid on the block, Richmond Brat House, will be opening it’s doors. This family friendly restaurant will feature 20 craft beers on tap, and will also offer gourmet burgers, bratwursts, and other sandwiches.
To top your day off, visit Gia’s Salon and Spa for a little pampering. From nail services to facials to massages, it’s the perfect way to end your one day getaway. And bring your family back the first weekend in December for the Christmas of Yesteryear celebration. Watch dance performances, take a wagon ride, and sit on Santa’s lap all within the historic charm of a vintage town.
The next time you’re craving a little getaway, come shop local at the quaint little town right in our backyard. The blessing of shopping local is that your dollars are paying for dance lessons and braces for another local family. How privileged are we to be able to support other women and families reach their dreams while benefiting our own homes? The shops listed here represent just a smidgen of the fun day out you can have in Richmond.
What’s your favorite small town to visit for a day?
Little McHenry County is graciously supported by the Raue Center for Arts. The Raue Center for the Arts is McHenry County’s premiere theater destination, hosting unique events and performances which include theater, comedy, music and family productions in a charming and historic venue in downtown Crystal Lake. The Raue Center For The Arts is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization dedicated to enriching the lives of all through the arts.
- Get Lit(erary), 2nd Thursday of the month
- WSR Comedy Night, 3rd Thursday of the month
- A Christmas Survival Guide, weekends November 26 – December 4
- Northwest Indiana Symphony Orchestra, December 9
- Sing Along Messiah, December 11
- The Nutcracker Ballet, December 17 – 18
- Close to You: The Music of the Carpenters, December 30
- Rockin New Year’s Eve with Jimmy Nick, December 31
- Everybody’s Hero, January 31
See the full calendar of events on the Raue Website.