Those of us lucky enough to call Rockford and northern Kent County home may have grown accustomed to the many positive changes in our local landscape over the past five years. But talk to a newcomer or someone who hasn’t visited in years and you may just view our quaint, Norman Rockwell-like town through a different lens. Rewind the tape and you’ll see much has changed: the picturesque Peppler Park in full floral splendor, a boardwalk meandering north along the west bank of the Rogue, a packed Garden Club Park and bandstand for year-round festivals, new family-owned shops, and the catalyst to much of the development, the Promenade building and river walk. Perched along the bank of the Rogue River, the Tuscan-designed Promenade was built in 2005-2006, replacing the inoperable Water Treatment Plant and creating an award-winning gateway to our city.
On August 11, 2011, Reds on the River, located in the north end of the Promenade, will celebrate its fifth anniversary with special thanks to the City of Rockford, Rockford Public Schools, Rockford Chamber of Commerce, the Heart of Rockford Business Association, and the many guests it has had the privilege to serve since opening its doors.
Glenn Forgie, Reds’ executive chef who has been on board since before the restaurant opened, noted, “We are extremely blessed to be a part of such wonderful community. There are very few places like Rockford with tremendous community support, a vibrant downtown, picturesque landscape, great schools, an excellent work ethic, and local farms offering organic fruits, vegetables, meats and dairy. The past five years have been tremendous, despite a challenging economic downturn, and we are really looking forward to the next five years—and beyond—in Rockford.”
Since Reds opened, it has been a tremendous community partner and spokesperson for Rockford. Milestones include:
• Voted Best New Restaurant by Grand Rapids Magazine, January 2007
• Winner of fine dining awards, Grand Rapids Magazine, 2008-2011
• Chef of the Year, Grand Rapids Magazine, 2011
• Voted #1 Outdoor Dining and Notable Wine List—Open Table
• Founder of Heirloom Tomato Festival and Rockford Ice Festival
• Co-founder of the Rockford Community Gardens
• Partner with Rockford Public Schools for student internships
• Active member of the Heart of Rockford Business Association and Rockford Chamber of Commerce
• Supporter of numerous charity events and fundraisers
• Active in drawing out-of-town guests to Rockford and spurring economic development by hosting events, promoting Rockford on TV, radio and national publications, and drawing the Food Network to Rockford for the Second Annual Ice Festival
• Reds employees on average 60-90 staff per year (increases with summer seasonal help)
To say thank-you to the many guests who have supported Reds over the past five years and to welcome Climie to Rockford, Reds is offering guests a complimentary chocolate mousse dessert (with the purchase of an entrée) whenever they bring in the coupon from next week’s ad, or become a fan on Facebook. Reds will also be awarding lucky winners gift cards each week throughout the month of August. To enter to win, stop in and sign up to receive Reds e-mails on special events, Wine and Cooking School, and happy-hour offerings.