Archive for the ‘Businesses’ Category

HOFFMAN ESTATES BUSINESSES OF THE LATE ’60S

July 24, 2016

When the Hoffman Estates Police Department was doing its patrols in the 1960’s, the village was divided into four area zones.

Pat Barch, Hoffman Estates Historian, graciously passed on a list of the businesses that were located in each zone.

Based on the businesses I am familiar with and where they were/are located, I have come up with a rudimentary description of each Area.  I have also placed an asterisk (*) next to the businesses I am unfamiliar with.

If any of these businesses ring a bell, I would be happy to update the list.  Please leave a comment or contact me by the email listed below.  I appreciate any assistance you can provide!

AREA #1

Southwest corner of Higgins and Roselle Roads.  Hoffman Plaza.  East side of Roselle Road between Higgins and Golf.

Abco Job Center*
Barton Stull*
Burger King–on north side of Higgins Road, just east of Roselle Road.Burger King
Car Wash–on south side of Golf Road, just east of Roselle Road.
Clothes Basket*
Colonel Sanders–(KFC?) on south side of Higgins Road, just west of Roselle Road.  Correct?
Currency Exchange–in Hoffman Plaza.
Dog ‘N Suds–on west side of Roselle Road, just north of Bode Road.
Duco Engineering*
Guido’s–on west side of Roselle Road, between Bode and Higgins Road.
Hoffman Plaza–on east side of  Roselle Road, between Golf and Higgins Road.
Hunt Construction*
Irene’s Rainbow Inn–on west side of Higgins Road at Roselle Road.
Jerome Fabrics*
Jewel-Osco–in Hoffman Plaza.  See above.Hoffman Plaza
Jupiter Cleaners*
Kinney Shoes–on south side of Golf Road, just east of Roselle Road.
Neff T.V.–on west side of Roselle Road, just south of Higgins Road.
Pete’s Barber Shop–on west side of Roselle Road, just south of Higgins Road.
Plaza Shell–on the northeast corner of Higgins and Roselle Road.
Post Office–in Hoffman Plaza.  See above.
Ralston T.V.*
Ray’s Heating*
Rice Heating*
Robert Hall–on the southeast corner of Higgins and Roselle Road.
Russell’s Barber Shop*
7-Eleven*
Texaco–on the northwest corner of the Bode and Roselle Road intersection.
United Rent-All*
V & S Hardware*
Value Land*
Dr. Waxler*

AREA #2

West side of Roselle Road, north of Higgins Road.  Golf Rose Shopping Center.  [Are there other locations?]

American Loans*
B & K Realty*
B.P.A.A. (Bowling Proprietors’ Association of America)
Bakery*–I think this is the Golf Rose Bakery in the Golf Rose Shopping Center.  See below.
Baskin Robbins–in the Golf Rose Shopping Center.  See below.
Dr. Bennett–Dentist*
Brass & Glass*
Budget Rent A Car*
Century Towers*
Cherry’s Shoes*
Citgo–on the southwest corner of Roselle and Golf Road.
Deanna’s School of Dance*
Diamond Cue*
Drake’s Male Fashion*
Firestone Tire–on the west side of Roselle Road, between Higgins and Golf.
Golf Paint, Glass & Wallpaper*
Golf Rose Barber Shop–in the Golf Rose Shopping Center.  See below.
Golf Rose Plaza–on the west side of Roselle Road, between Higgins and Golf.
Grants–in the Golf Rose Shopping Center.  See above.
Heritage Trace Apts.–on the south side of Higgins Road between Roselle and Golf.  (Now known as Steeple Hill Condominiums)
Heathron Beauty Salon*
Ho Luck Chop Suey*
Hoffman Lanes–on the north side of Higgins Road just west of Roselle Road.Hoffman Lanes
Hoffman Rosner Corp.–on the west side of Roselle Road, between Golf and Higgins.  Across from Firestone.
Law Offices*
McMahon Real Estate*
National Foods–in the Golf Rose Shopping Center.  See above.
Omega Sports*
Orchid Cleaners*
Prairie Ridge Apts.*
Record Newspaper*
Sentiment & Sweets*
Shakey’s Pizza*
Snyders Drugs–in the Golf Rose Shopping Center.  See above.
Sorority House*
State Farm Insurance*
Suburban Bank–on the west side of Roselle Road, just south of Golf Road.
Thunderbird Theatre–in the Golf Rose Shopping Center.  See above.
Dr. Udesky–Optometrist*
Union 76 Gas Station–on the northwest corner of Higgins and Roselle Road.

AREA #3

Higgins Road on the north side, west of the intersection with Golf.

Dale House*
Enco Station*
Hilldale Village*–apartment complex on the north side of Higgins Road at Huntington Boulevard.
Multicon*

AREA #4

Higgins Road on the south side, west of the intersection with Golf.  Higgins Road on the north side, west of the intersection with Huntington Boulevard.  Central Road.  Algonquin Road.

Barrington Square–on the north side of Higgins Road between Governor’s Lane and Barrington Road.Barrington Square
Clayton Corp.*
Mobil Station*
Moon Lake Village–apartment complex on the south side of Higgins Road at Moon Lake Blvd.
Standard Station*
Thomas Engineering–at Central Road and Ela Road.
Winston Knolls–on the north side of Algonquin Road between Ela Road and Windemere Lane.

Jane Rozek
Local History Librarian
Schaumburg Township District Library
jrozek@stdl.org

FILLING UP THE TANK AT HIGGINS AND GOLF

March 13, 2016

Our guest contributor this week is Pat Barch, the Hoffman Estates Historian.  This column originally appeared in the February 2016 issue of the Hoffman Estates Citizen, the village’s newsletter.  The column appears here, courtesy of the Village of Hoffman Estates.

The intersection of Higgins and Golf Roads was a busy intersection in the 1930s and 40s as it is today. During the farming days of Schaumburg Township the service station was a necessary part of the community.

The Sunderlage family had a gas station and small grocery store on the south side of Higgins across from what was their granddaughter and her husband’s farm, the Christenson farm. It was a meeting place for the farmers who went there with their milk for pick up by the local dairy.

Another gas station was also located at this intersection serving the motorist with personal service that has long since disappeared. Excellent mechanical work for their cars, a fill up and windows washed was expected when you pulled in but most enjoyed a friendly welcome by the owner, Anton Kosnik.

Anton Kosnik and his family established their home and gas station at Higgins and Golf in 1928. A picture and caption of Anton being presented with a 25th anniversary plaque by Standard Oil was in the Daily Herald on 7/14/60.

The story of this gas station came to my attention this past year with a call from a gentleman who remembered the gas station and the son of Anton Kosnik. He and many of his young friends, who were now gray haired, had wondered about Anton’s son and whether or not he was still alive.

Yes, Anton’s son was still alive. With help from old newspaper stories and a photo, the gentleman’s question could be answered and further information shared with him.

It was another reminder of how the neighborhood gas station was more that a service station. It would become the hang out for customers and their kids. What had happened to the friendly young man? Anton’s son had cerebral palsy and the other kids would always be around if he needed help.

The gentleman who called me asking for help, made me realize how the history that we write about and the resources that we rely on are important to those who remember special people, events or memories from the past.

Many thanks to Schaumburg Township District Library’s historian Jane Rozek who is invaluable in helping with research.

Pat Barch
Hoffman Estates Village Historian
Eagle2064@comcast.net

FAVORITE FUN THINGS ABOUT SCHAUMBURG: FEBRUARY EDITION

February 7, 2016

valentines dayHappy Birthday Schaumburg!  You’re turning 60 this year on March 7, 2016 and we’re happy to celebrate with you!

In honor of your birthday year, we’re doing a monthly blog posting based on some of our favorite things about you.

During the month of February–and in celebration of Valentine’s Day–we’re asking the readers of this blog to share their favorite Schaumburg restaurant to have a romantic meal.  Maybe it’s a let’s-get-dressed-up type of establishment or maybe it’s a place where you went every week, rain, snow or shine.  Maybe it’s where you had a first date or maybe it’s where you met a future spouse.

Here is a suggestion to spark a memory or two.

lancer

 

If it holds fond memories for you–or you’ve just discovered it–please share your favorite spot!

Jane Rozek
Local History Librarian
Schaumburg Township District Library
jrozek@stdl.org

CAN YOU HELP IDENTIFY THESE PHOTOS?

January 24, 2016

While preparing a group of photos to be scanned for the library’s archives, I came across these two that were part of a collection donated by the family of John Sternberg, former longtime pastor of St. Peter Lutheran Church.  (Thank you to the Sternberg family!)

The photo below shows a group of parishoners of St. Peter’s enjoying some time at a bowling alley.  Judging by the clothes, the time frame is either the 1950s or the early 1960s.  Hoffman Lanes opened in 1961 and I’m hoping this photo shows their interior because that would be a neat addition to the collection.  It looks, though, like many bowling alleys of that time period so it could be any one of a number of bowling establishments.  Can anyone possibly discern which bowling alley it might be?

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This  next photo obviously depicts a very new subdivision in our township.  Distinguishing characteristics are the very young trees in the parkways, the fact that there is curb and gutter edging the street, the subdivision is built on a slope and the car on the right looks like it was probably from the 1950s.  The back of the photo says ca. 1963.  Any ideas about which subdivision this might be?

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As always, your assistance is much appreciated!

Jane Rozek
Local History Librarian
Schaumburg Township District Library
jrozek@stdl.org

 

THE FIRST CORPORATE HEADQUARTERS OF F & S CONSTRUCTION/HOFFMAN HOMES

January 10, 2016

Our guest contributor this week is Pat Barch, the Hoffman Estates Historian.  This column originally appeared in the December 2015 issue of the Hoffman Estates Citizen, the village’s newsletter.  The column appears here, courtesy of the Village of Hoffman Estates.

Curved side 2

 

In the spring of 2016, the building located at 1070 N. Roselle Rd. will be torn down to make way for a McDonald’s Restaurant. The building has been the home to many different businesses since it was constructed in 1971. It was constructed by Hoffman Homes, previously F & S Construction, the builders of Hoffman Estates. It was built as the first corporate headquarters in the town that had been named for the Hoffman family. They moved into their new headquarters in 1972.

Jack Hoffman, president of Hoffman Homes, didn’t want to build just homes. He wanted to build a complete community. First and foremost, he wanted to build homes that the returning World War II vets could afford. He knew the town would need shopping and office space, apartments and schools and places to have fun.

The homes started going up in 1955 with Parcel A, then across Higgins to Parcel B in 56 & 57. Twinbrook and Fairview Schools were the first of many schools in the newly developed neighborhoods. Conant High School, the first to be built in Schaumburg Township, was built in 1964.

Shopping was needed and Hoffman Plaza at Roselle Rd. between Golf and Higgins, opened in 1959 with a Jewel Food Store, much awaited by the community that had to travel to Roselle or Palatine to shop. A Walgreens Agency Drug Store (Snyder’s) doctor’s offices and other retail stores quickly filled the Plaza.

To continue the plan for a complete community, F & S. Construction built the Golf Rose Shopping Center across from Hoffman Plaza in 1963. Grant’s Department Store, National Tea Grocery Store and the Buttery Bakery were some of the much awaited new additions to the growing town. The Thunderbird Movie Theater came along a few years later. It was in this shopping center that F & S Construction, now known as Hoffman Homes, chose to build its first corporate headquarters in 1971.

Front facade

In doing my research, I had the privilege of talking with Harry Buck, the project manager for F & S Construction. He built the Golf Rose Shopping Center and later constructed the 1070 corporate headquarters. Harry is 90 years old and remembered so much about the building. He told me that it was built without any corners. He recalled calling it the castle since it had a ramp entrance with what looked like a moat below. When I talked with Buz & Ed Hoffman, Jack’s sons, about the building, they remembered calling it the submarine. Everyone was sad to hear that it would soon be gone.

Water tower view

Harry reminded me that the Medcoa building & apartments at Higgins & Grand Canyon along with the bowling alley were also built by F & S/Hoffman Homes as part of their plan for a complete community. It was great talking to the man who had actually built the 1070 Roselle building.

Pat Barch
Hoffman Estates Village Historian
Eagle2064@comcast.net

WHEN PURE OIL CAME TO TOWN

November 1, 2015

When it was first built on the northeast corner of Meacham and Golf Roads, the modern building rested in solitary splendor on a great expanse of lawn surrounded by fields and more fields.  Home of the Pure Oil Company that was later named Unocal, the two story corporate office building came to Schaumburg Township in 1960.

Pure Oil

(Photo acknowledgement to the Daily Herald.)

Pure Oil incorporated as Columbus Production Company on April 19, 1914 in Columbus, Ohio. Two days later on April 21 the name was changed to Ohio Cities Gas Company. This name lasted for six years until it was changed once again on July 1, 1920 to Pure Oil Company.  By September of 1926, the company moved their headquarters from Columbus to what was known as the Jeweler’s building at 35 E. Wacker Drive in Chicago.  As the main tenant in this new skyscraper, the structure soon became known as the Pure Oil Building.Pure Oil building(Photo acknowledgement to architecturefarm.wordpress.com)

  • They remained in this location until October 31, 1960 when they moved to their own home in what was then known as Palatine.  The offices later were annexed as part of Schaumburg in the mid-1970’s with the address being 1650 and 1700 E. Golf Road at various times.

Their new building, according to an undated Daily Herald newspaper account, was mostly a one-story structure with a red brick and limestone exterior. At the main entrance, in the center, was a two-story section housing the executive offices on its second floor. The building contained 250,000 square feet of floor space and was designed by the architectural firm of Perkins & Will, according to the Village of Schaumburg’s Woodfield Regional Concept Plan.  The newspaper account says that the building was constructed by the George A. Fuller Company.

The 700-foot-long front of the building faced south toward Golf Road and was on a 240-acre parcel. The one-story office areas surrounded four landscaped courts of varying sizes. The 69-foot-wide interior sections of the building were free of columns and allowed for flexible office partitions and layouts. The building also contained an employees’ lounge, a cafeteria, an auditorium, a two-story map room and a specially designed area housing “an electronic computer and other data processing equipment.  It is also noted in the article that the building was air-conditioned–obviously an improvement for the time!

The circular parking lots occupied nine acres at the east and west end of the buildings and provided space for 1000 cars. Entrances were on both Golf and Meacham Roads.

Approximately 1500 employees worked in the building when it opened.  Many had lived in the city but subsequently moved out to the suburbs to be closer to work.  Robert L. Milligan, President of Pure Oil said, “We have found few inconveniences in being 26 miles from the Loop.  The Northwest Tollway and Northwest Expressway put us within little over half and hour from downtown.”  Shortly after the move, employees in the Arlington Heights office were also moved to the Palatine location.

On July 16, 1965, almost five years after they moved in, Pure Oil merged with Union Oil Company of California and the name was changed to Union Oil Co.  On April 25, 1983 the company officially became known as Unocal.  In 1992 it was announced that Unocal would be leaving the Schaumburg area and, by 1993, their National Auto/Truckstop system was phased out of the property.

The property was subsequently purchased by Roosevelt University and the buildings renovated to accomodate classrooms and offices. The campus was opened to the public in 1996.  It stands directly behind the far east end of the Woodfield Village Green shopping center.  It is bordered on the east by Roosevelt Boulevard and on the west by McConnor Parkway which Unocal built on its own in the 1980’s.  (The Parkway is named for W.S. McConnor, a Vice-President of Refining and Marketing for Union Oil in the 1970s.)

Below are some photos of what it looks like today.

Roosevelt UniversityRoosevelt UniversityRoosevelt University

Roosevelt UniversityRoosevelt UniversityJane Rozek
Local History Librarian
Schaumburg Township District Library
jrozek@stdl.org

THE MYSTERY OF QUINLAN AND TYSON REALTORS

October 18, 2015

Quinlan and Tyson

 

This photo came to me courtesy of Pat Barch, Hoffman Estates Historian.   The back of the photo says, “Old brown house on Schaumburg Road, June 1980”.

I recognized the brown house as the Al and Marilyn Glade house.  It was immediately west of the Ace Hardware at Roselle and Schaumburg Roads in later years and west of the Fenz store in earlier years.  A number of families called it home, including Delbert Bullamore who ran the Lake-Cook Farm Supply that was in the small building next to what is now Lou Malnatis.  It was a short commute home.

The sign, though, for Quinlan and Tyson does not represent the brown house.  In my first posting I wrote that the sign indicated that the business was in the brown house.  One of the commenters below corrected me and noted that Quinlan and Tyson was, in fact, in the house to the west of the brown house.  In other words, it was two doors west of Ace Hardware.  I took a look at an aerial photo from this time period that we have on the Local History Digital Archive and confirmed his statement.  If you’ll notice in the photo below, there is a tree to the left of the business.  The aerial photo shows this tree and, more importantly, does not show a tree in front of the brown house.  Ultimately it means the perspective we see is looking east down Schaumburg Road, and the Quinlan and Tyson building is actually to the right and unseen in the photo.

Quinlan and Tyson 2

That being said, I felt a bit of research on Quinlan and Tyson was warranted.  I discovered that they expanded into Chicago’s Northwest suburbs in May 1969 “with offices in Arlington Heights, Palatine and Schaumburg.”  [Dreams, Money, and Ambition:  A History of Real Estate in Chicago.  Betsy Pegg, 1983]  Their address was 7 W. Schaumburg Road, which was on the south side of the road.  According to their sign this was the Schaumburg/Hoffman Estates office.  An ad (gratefully used from the Daily Herald) from that time shows a very similar looking house and sign.

I found newspaper ads for the agency through 1979 and then switched to our collection of phone books to follow their existence, tracking them through 1984 at the same address.    The 1984 date makes sense because, in January 1985, the Quinlan and Tyson name ceased to exist when they were bought by Merrill Lynch.

In Dreams, Money and Ambition, it is noted that, on September 3, 1980, “the new Schaumburg institute is officially opened.”  This meshes with the teardown date of June 1980 on the back of the photo.  The problem was trying to figure out what building took its place, since there is a gap between 1980 and the dissolution of the company in 1985.  Plus, there is the fact that the phone books continued to list the real estate office at the same address.

To give me a little perspective, I began exploring the Town Square aerial photos on the library’s Local History Digital Archive.  The only building that seemed to be in the proper location was the two-story, brown office building that sat immediately adjacent to the Ace Hardware on the SW corner of Schaumburg and Roselle.  With a little more digging through the Digital Archive, I confirmed the connection through the photo below contributed by L.S. Valentine.

The building was known as the Quinlan and Tyson building when it was first built in 1980.  It housed various businesses at different times, including Quinlan & Tyson Real Estate, Merrill Lynch Real Estate, Prudential Real Estate, William M. Dumich, C.P.A, and Donald Frostholm. In 1995 the Village of Schaumburg purchased the office building and demolished it in order to begin the redevelopment of a new Town Square.

0409

 

Case closed.  Mystery solved.  And a huge thank you to Tim Legrady for clarifying the location of the first Quinlan and Tyson office.  I always appreciate the assistance of the readers!  If you have any other details on Quinlan and Tyson that you’d like to share, please do.  Adding to the history is always appreciated!

Jane Rozek
Local History Librarian
Schaumburg Township District Library
jrozek@stdl.org

 

 

THE CREAMERIES OF HOFFMAN ESTATES

May 24, 2015

Our guest contributor this week is Pat Barch, the Hoffman Estates Historian.  This column originally appeared in the April 2015 issue of the Hoffman Estates Citizen, the village’s newsletter.  The column appears here, courtesy of the Village of Hoffman Estates.

Long before F & S Construction made its decision to develop the surrounding farmland into the present Hoffman Estates, the farming community was busy with day to day operations on the farm.

Holstein_heifer

The main industry was dairy farming.  Most of the local farms had dairy herds averaging 30 head.  Caring for the milk cows was a family affair.  Everyone was up before sunrise to feed, water and prepare the barn for the morning milking.  A hardy breakfast was being prepared in the kitchen, as the milking chores were carried out. The milk was transported to several local creameries.

There were several locations, in what is now Hoffman Estates, situated at major intersections that accepted the cans and cans of milk collected each morning for pick up by local dairies.  One of these was located at the intersection of Higgins and Roselle road, called Nebel’s Corners.  Mr. Nebel  purchased the property around 1898.  He built a store along with the creamery and would barter with the farmers, keeping close accounts of milk brought in for each and settling accounts monthly.  Each farmer had his farm name on his milk cans.  At the peak of operations, 10,000 pounds of milk were received each morning. Mr. Nebel died in an auto accident in 1931.  The farmland was sold and the creamery closed.  The country store remained in business until 1938.  Walgreens Drug Store is now on that corner.

A second location was at the intersection of Barrington Rd. and Higgins Rd. known as Buttermilk Corners.  At that time Higgins Rd. was south of its present location.  Along with the creamery was a blacksmith shop, country store and gas pumps run by Herman Hartz.  His home and several others a short distance south on Barrington Rd. formed the small crossroad community.  Hedlins Dairy picked up the milk each morning.  The creamery was torn down in 1906 but Mr. Hartz remained an important part of Buttermilk Corners.  His blacksmith shop was a vital part of the farming community.  Repairs were needed to keep the farm equipment operating throughout the growing season.

In the 1930’s Harvey Bierman purchased the blacksmith shop and started his own business in a large Quonset hut at the same location as the creamery & blacksmith shop.

Bierman Implement 3

Another crossroads location that collected the cans and cans of milk was at Higgins and Golf Rd. known as the Sunderlage Gas Station.  Mr. Sunderlage also had a small country store in his gas station.   This gas station remained open until the late 1960s when it became the Busy Bee Car Wash.

All of these locations were meeting places for the local farmers who stayed to visit and find out the latest news once the milk was unloaded and their business completed.  The pot bellied stove was always surrounded by chairs to warm the farmers on those cold winter days.  Summertime found them gathered about the pop cooler sharing the same gossip and news of the day.

It all disappeared with the construction of a new community called Hoffman Estates.

Pat Barch, Hoffman Estates Village Historian
eagle2064@comcast.net

NIGHTCLUBS OF SCHAUMBURG TOWNSHIP

April 5, 2015

Just as the band Cheap Trick was getting its start in nearby Rockford in 1973, the B. Ginnings nightclub of Schaumburg came along to give them a stage.  Opening in 1974, B. Ginnings was begun by Danny Seraphine, the drummer for the band Chicago.  This wonderful photo, passed on to me by blog reader, Larry Rowan, shows the sign for Woodfield Commons.  If you’re wondering where the nightclub was, just put yourself in the Secretary of State’s Drivers License facility on Golf Road.  You’d be standing in the middle of it.B ginnings

Other nightclubs have also had their heyday in Schaumburg Township.  Some had dancing, some had live music and some were just a great place to spend a weekend night to see and be seen. Confetti could be found at 1850 E. Golf Road, adjacent to the Hyatt Hotel.They offered a complimentary dinner buffet, Ladies Night, had a dress code and stipulated that you had to be 21 with proper ID.

There was Studebaker’s which could also be found in Woodfield Commons.   It had a good-sized dance floor with music that leaned towards classic rock and roll.  It was opened by Walter Payton and a group of investors who followed on the heels of that success with another venture–Thirty Fours.  This bar opened in 1988 and closed in 1995 at the same location as Confetti.  It was very popular and had a great dance floor too.  After the closure in 1995 it reopened as Phroggs and had the same amenities as Confetti except that it was necessary to be 23 to enter.  A later incarnation was called the Living Room.  Hot location, wouldn’t you say?

Of course, there was also the Snuggery on Algonquin Road which was a huge hit during the 1980s and into the 1990s.  Further east on Algonquin, near Rte. 53 was La Margarita.  They were known for their Mexican food but became a nightclub in the evening and were open until 4 a.m.   There was also the Bamboo Room on Golf Road between Roselle and Plum Grove.  It closed in 2007 and became Heat.

Maybe you can remember others that were your hot spots?  Or that came earlier in the 1970s?  Please share any I’ve missed.  And, if you’re interested in a nice history of B. Ginnings, check it out here.

Jane Rozek
Local History Librarian
Schaumburg Township District Library
jrozek@stdl.org

 

WHO LOVES YA SCHAUMBURG? A BOWLING ALLEY COMES TO TOWN…

March 22, 2015

It was a big day in Schaumburg on Sunday, September 7, 1975 when Telly Savalas came to town for the grand opening of Schaumburg Lanes, the first bowling alley built in Schaumburg.  He arrived at the invitation of Tony Ceresa, the owner and operator of Frontier Lanes, Inc. of Elgin.  The 40-lane building at 117 N. Roselle Road was Mr. Ceresa’s second project and was just south of–what was then–the Golden Acres Country Club.  It was also state of the art with its Brunswick Astroline gear of automatic pinspotters and “revolutionary two lane Automatic Scorer–the first in the midwest and only the second in the country.”  [Daily Herald; 9/3/1975]

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The photos above are of the site before construction began.  It is obvious that St. Peter Lutheran Church is in the background as well as the low tan brick building that is their elementary school.  Also evident to the right is the Sloan/Kotel house that is now called the Blue House and is on Schaumburg Road.  The groundbreaking for the new bowling alley on the 3.16 acre site was held October 18, 1974 with Mr. Ceresa in attendance as well as Russ Larson, president of the Schaumburg Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Bob Baldwin, president of the Elgin Bowling Association which was a governing body of men’s bowling in the northwest suburbs and Ray LeBeau, a village of Schaumburg trustee.  The building took nearly a year to complete and outfit but when it finally opened, not only was Telly Savalas in attendance but a whole other host of luminaries were there as well.

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4306

The list included bowling champions Dave Soutar and his wife, Judy, Fred “Skee” Foremsky and Vesma Grinfelds who all participated in demonstration bowling for the audience of potential local customers.  These bowling pros were joined by Chicago Bulls’ basketball star Bob Love and a host of Playboy Bunnies who helped introduce the new bowling equipment.  [The photos above show both the building almost fully constructed with its distinctive, arched roof and also, shortly before the grand opening.]

Schaumburg Lanes was on Roselle Road for 20 years and was a popular spot with local bowling leagues.  They offered a snack shop and a nursery for parents who enjoyed a night out. Different events were sponsored including a New Year’s Eve Candlelite Bowling Party in 1979 that offered food, prizes, favors, bowling, open bar and hats.  The cost was $35 a couple and ran from 10:00 until the partying stopped.  [Daily Herald; 12/12/1979]  They also expanded their activities to include junior league bowling teams for children.  In an April 26, 1992 article from the Chicago Tribune, it mentions that Schaumburg Lanes manager, “Rich Klasa has seen an influx of bowling teams made up of kids and their parents in the last few years.”  All in all, it was a busy site, considering their neighbor, the Schaumburg Transportation Company, generously offering their parking lot as a space for the Schaumburg Farmers’ Market for a period of time.Schaumburg Lanes 1

Schaumburg Lanes 2By 1995 though, the developers were knocking and business had tailed off so the bowling alley closed.  “The lanes [were] sold from the bowling alley and [went] to California and North Carolina… [with] the machinery [heading] to Japan.  [Daily Herald; 3/29/1995]   The site, along with Schaumburg Transportation Company’s 15-acres, was purchased and eventually, in 1997, the Olde Schaumburg townhome community was begun by Hoffman Homes.  It’s hard to believe the townhomes have been there now almost as long as the bowling alley was.

Bowling  is a sport almost anyone can do and, in 1975, it had to have been a nice addition to the area.   If you were a regular or played your first game there, please share your memories.  From the interior, to the Automatic Scorers or to the good times you had, it’s always nice to discuss what you remember.

Jane Rozek
Local History Librarian
Schaumburg Township District Library
jrozek@stdl.org

The photos above were graciously donated to the library by Jay Campbell who had the foresight 40 years ago to take the pictures and preserve them so that we could all share in the memories.  Thank you Jay.

The black matchbook cover, with its ads for both Schaumburg Lanes and Frontier Lanes, was passed on by Johnny Kunzer, an interested reader of the blog.  It’s always nice when one of the blog postings strikes a chord.  Thank you Johnny.