Aricka Westbrooks grew up in Beverly so it was only fitting that when she returned to the Windy City to relocate her business she wound up in the old neighborhood.
Westbrooks brought her fried turkey business, aptly named Jive Turkey, to Chicago from Brooklyn because she ships the birds all across the country and shipping costs are easier from Chicago to the rest of the country.
“She opened a pop-up retail store in November at 1979 W. 111th St. in time for the holidays,” said company spokeswoman Fonje Brown. “Business was so good she decided to stay in that location.”
Westbrooks, a 1988 graduate of Morgan Park High School, formed Jive Turkey in 2001 after she began deep-frying turkeys in her back yard because she missed the taste. She started selling turkey from a Brooklyn storefront in 2003.
“When she decided to move the business to Chicago she didn’t know she’d be returning to her roots,” said Brown. “Then she found this space, where she used to eat when she was in high school.”
Jive Turkey features 15 different kinds of deep-fried turkey and is preparing a “green turkey” in honor of St. Patrick’s Day.
“Aricka has come up with a green pesto that she will cover the turkeys with to give that seasonal color,” said Brown.
The restaurant sells everything from whole turkeys to legs to sandwiches along with the fixings.
Jive Turkey allows customers a display window so they can view the entire turkey frying process – from the lowering of the turkey into the hot oil to the emergence of the juicy golden bird.
Westbrooks is no stranger to helping the community, as well.
“She donated a bunch of turkeys to the South Side Irish Parade party and fundraiser last weekend at Bourbon Street,” Brown said.
For information or to order, call 718-797-1688.
Oak Lawn to Announce 111th Street Anchor
Oak Lawn officials are expected to announce next week, possibly on Feb. 26, the first anchor store for the redevelopment project that will be getting under way this year at 111th Street and Cicero Avenue.
The village has for months been demolishing buildings at the site in preparation for the redevelopment project, which is being handled by Hamilton Partners.
Mayor Dave Heilmann teased members of the Oak Lawn Chamber with this information during his annual state of the village address at the Hilton on Feb. 12.
“Who,” an audience member shouted.
The mayor said the village is close to signing with anchor store tent. .
“Once we sign, the rest of these spaces will fill up rapidly," Heilmann said.
The mayor said the will generate $50 million in annual sales and create 400 jobs.
“And that’s just one place,” he said.
The upscale retail development is expected to contribute generously to the village tax base, including $500,000 to $1 million in incremental property tax revenue; and $750,000 to $1 million in sales tax revenue.
The former Kmart, Heilmann said, previously generated around $210,000 in annual sales tax revenue.
Oak Lawn Village Manager Larry Deetjen told Patch that the village’s developeris were in the final stages of lease negotiations with the unnamed anchor store. An announcement is likely to be made on or around Feb. 26.
Grassano’s Pizza still open in Oak Lawn
The recent and unexpected closing of Grassano’s Pizza at 14318 S. Will Cook Road in Homer Glen caught everyone off guard including family members who operate the original location in Oak Lawn.
“So sorry about that,” Grassano’s of Oak Lawn wrote on its Facebook page. “This one was owned and operated by other family members. I'm so very sorry they didn't notify their customers. And you're right to be upset about that. You're not the only one.”
The owners of the Oak Lawn location and said there are no plans to reopen the Homer Glen location.
Andriana Furs consolidates in Beverly
Andriana Furs has closed its two other locations and is consolidating all of its inventory under one roof at its Beverly location at 2201 W. 95th St. For information, call the store at 773-779-7000.
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