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woodstock courthouse

Woodstock cuts ribbon on the Old Courthouse Center

McH THRIVE Update!

Resume McHenry County becomes McH THRIVE!

With the end of the state and federal COVID-19 states of emergency, it’s time to stop talking about resuming life as normal and dedicate it to moving ahead, together, better than before.

We deserve the opportunity that lies before us… our manufacturers and small businesses, our workforce, our tourism industry, our agriculture and agritourism sectors and our economic development agencies and chambers of commerce… all of us deserve the opportunity to THRIVE!

Thank you for reading and subscribing to the new McH THRIVE! You can help us continue to grow by forwarding this email to people who you think would enjoy it. They can subscribe by visiting or on social media.


The old Woodstock Courthouse gets a new look (and name!)

Woodstock cut the ribbon on the newly restored (and renamed) Old Courthouse Center, on the Square.

If you think this 166-year-old beauty looks great on the outside, you should see the inside – the renovations are absolutely fantastic! It’s going to be home to tenant businesses (including the existing Woodstock Public House and the new MobCraft Brewery), and the Woodstock Chamber of Commerce, as well as two micro business incubators.

We can’t wait to see the economic boost that comes with this new direction for the Courthouse! The restoration and redevelopment has been a 10-year journey, and it very much looks worth the wait. You can learn more about the process by clicking here. You also can click here to learn more about The 101 Retail Incubation Program.


Want to plant a pollinator garden? Watch this video.

A growing number of public buildings, including our own McHenry County Administration Building, are planting pollinator gardens to provide food and habitat for bees, butterflies and other species vital to our food supply and ecosystem.

One of them, created at Johnsburg Junior High School with the help of students and a Harvard-based nonprofit, was the feature of the July installment of the Talk and Tour Best Management Practices series co-hosted by the Environmental Defenders of McHenry County and the McHenry County Water Resources Division.

Jack and Judy Speer of Small Waters Education gave a presentation at the school showing people how to plan, build and maintain a pollinator garden, and you can watch it by clicking the video above.


Manufacturing Month tours coming in October

This October, local manufacturers will again open their doors to tours for students, parents, community members and policymakers to explore all the opportunities that McHenry County‘s manufacturing sector offers.

Thirteen county manufacturers. partnering with the Manufacturing Pathways Consortium, will offer the tours on the evenings of October 10, October 18 and October 25. What better way to celebrate Manufacturing Month, which takes place every October on Illinois, than showing young people and their parents a path to a well-paying and in-demand career?

You can sign up for the free tours by visiting For more information, feel free to contact Michael Kennedy at Space is limited based on capacity, so register soon!

And thank you to the manufacturers offering the tours: Swiss Automation, XACT Wire EDM, Boltswitch, General Kinematics, Mathews Company, TC Industries, Technipaq, Inc., AFC Materials, Fabrik Plastics, Burnex Corp., Scot Forge, MAC Automation and WM Kline & Co.!


Mark your calendars for the Disability Job Fair/Employer Workshop

The McHenry County Workforce NetworkMcHenry County College and the State of Illinois are again teaming up with the State of Illinois to help people with disabilities get into the workforce or find new jobs.

They are co-hosting an Employer Workshop on Wednesday, October 11, to educate businesses about how workers with different abilities can help solve workforce shortages. And on Wednesday, October 25, the will host the Disability Job Fair, which is free and open to job seekers with any type of disability.

Save the dates – as always, McH Thrive will let you know more about these important events when the details are finalized.


MCC offers tuition-free GED and ESL courses

Are you or someone you know – or a member of your workforce – trying to earn their high-school equivalency certificate or improve their English? How about needing help to pass the citizenship test?

McHenry County College’s Adult Education Department offers not only free GED and ESL courses, but also a raft of other free programs; besides Spanish, the department’s employees speak Polish, Russian, Ukrainian and Urdu.

The fall semester for the 16-week GED and ESL courses has already begun, but you can sign up for more information to enroll for spring semester – learn more by visiting or by calling 815-455-8752.


Summer Sunset Festival returns to Lake in the Hills next week

Our children may be back to school or heading back soon, but summer isn’t officially over until the Summer Sunset Festival arrives.

The annual event, at Sunset Park in Lake in the Hills, is a wonderful weekend of food, drink, entertainment, and lots of live music. And summer is sent off with a literal bang in the form of one of McHenry County‘s best fireworks displays.

This year’s festival takes place from Friday, September 1, through Sunday, September 3. Visit the festival website at for a complete schedule of events, and follow the festival on Facebook for the latest updates!


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What is McH Thrive?

McH Thrive is a collaborative initiative being implemented by McHenry County and the McHenry County Economic Development Corporation, MCEDC, in partnership with the McHenry County community, including cities and villages, businesses and residents.