Borek: Whiskey Acres to host, keynote DCEDC event

Whiskey Acres co-founder and president Jamie Walter will share insights into the creation and development of his family-run estate distillery at a DeKalb County Economic Development Corp. event next month.

He also will discuss the importance of branding to distinguish the “Seed-to-Spirit” distillery in the craft spirit marketplace.

The event will take place from 3 to 5:30 p.m. Sept. 11 at Whiskey Acres Distilling Company’s new 3,600-square-foot visitors center at 11504 Keslinger Road, south of DeKalb.

Business and community leaders are invited to spend the afternoon with us participating in:

• High-level networking

• Informative presentation about this cutting-edge craft beverage agribusiness

• Guided tour of distilling facility

• Sampling Whiskey Acres’ popular spirits (must be 21 years or older)

All Whiskey Acres spirits are distilled and bottled on their 2,000-acre farm in DeKalb County.

VAC/Premier Catering will prepare an assortment of appetizers.

A reservation for this business education and networking event is required to attend. Visit our secure website at or contact our Administrator Karen Hoyle at or 815-895-2711 on or before Sept. 3 to secure a reservation to attend this fabulous event.

DCEDC open house and ribbon-cutting

DCEDC is hosting a multichamber ribbon-cutting and open house from 4 to 7 p.m. Aug. 28. DCEDC and Chamber of Commerce members and community leaders are invited to join us for great food, cool beverages and fellowship as we celebrate our new location at 2179 Sycamore Road, Unit 102, in DeKalb.

Special thanks to our partners at the DeKalb Chamber of Commerce, Sycamore Chamber of Commerce, Genoa Area Chamber of Commerce and the Sandwich Area Chamber of Commerce for working with DCEDC to host this special event.

Special thanks also to DCEDC member caterers Faranda’s, Tom & Jerry’s of Sycamore and Fatty’s Pub & Grille.

For information, call Karen Hoyle at the DCEDC office at 815-895-2711, ext. 201.

• Paul Borek is executive director of the DeKalb County Economic Development Corp.

A note from Gene Fogle: Encourage students to sign up for Heavy Metal Tour

If you have children in school, you may be counting the days, hours or even minutes before the new school year begins. Of course, this requires school supplies, activities fees and getting up in the morning.

Moreover, while those challenges are formidable, they are short-term challenges. Therefore, consider an important long-term challenge – CAREERS. Whether you call it a career, a vocation or a job, this prepares your child to move into the future and become a viable part of our economy.

It all starts with being present and being “on-time,” and after that we look at all the possibilities. Confused? Of course you are. We see all kinds of jobs depicted in movies, YouTube or television’s “Dirty Jobs.”

However, in this world of opportunities the jobs are less glamorous and require the same high levels of dedication.

This all leads into career exploration opportunities that will be available to your students this year. The DeKalb/Ogle Workforce Development Consortium will present the seventh annual Heavy Metal Tour on Oct. 4. Students will have the opportunity to go into manufacturing facilities and see what takes place, ask about potential career paths and talk about the requirements for employment. After the tours, the students will proceed to Kishwaukee College for a tour of the Career Technologies Wing.

Even if your student does not want to attend college, it is important for them to participate in this opportunity. It is time-consuming and expensive to “try-out” various fields to find the one you like.

By going on this tour, your student can see if that product or job function appears interesting. If it does, we can set up a “shadowing opportunity” to get them additional time for evaluation and more detailed information. As far as going to Kishwaukee College, think about post-secondary certification.

Most jobs require some type of certification for employment and KC offers a great place to start.

Additional activities will occur throughout the year, such as the FabTech show in November, the Trades’ Fair in February and the Assemble ur Career Tour in February. Watch your high school’s announcements for up-to-date information and encourage your student to take part.

• Gene Fogle is industrial workforce coordinator for the DeKalb/Ogle Workforce Development Consortium. For information, email or text 815-593-0865.