- Berwyn Shops -
A Homegrown Project
Throughout 2022, our vision for a homegrown project turned into a reality!
Located on Roosevelt Rd, the Berwyn Shops is a retail incubator designed to provide entrepreneurs with the support they need to succeed: a storefront, education, promotion, and resources. After only 6 months of on-site construction, the inaugural season launched with 12 women-owned small businesses, offering everything from baked goods and home décor to artisanal accessories and beauty products.
From the day they opened in June to the moment they closed in December, the 12 business owners poured their all into their mini storefronts. They were on site every weekend for almost 7 months, and spent countless hours making products, attending monthly trainings, and crafting marketing materials.
Their passion for their businesses paid off. Throughout the season, the vendors broke sales records, sold out events, secured new contracts, expanded their followings, and even represented the Shops on TV! Specifically, the Berwyn Shops were featured across 15 news outlets, on 2 podcasts, and at two state conferences. They are inspiring city officials and entrepreneurs alike across the entire country!
In addition to supporting the 12 businesses, the retail incubator became a vibrant community space for entrepreneurs, artists, and musicians. In 2022, the Shops hosted over 28 pop-up vendors, 11 artists, and 6 musicians. The vendors also collaborated with Berwyn businesses, non-profits, and local officials to host over 45 special events on site.
As a result, 6931 Roosevelt Rd has become a destination for new shoppers and new businesses - none of which would be possible without the loyalty of the Berwyn community and our 15 partners. Whether you attended an event on site, served as a juror, or spent all your paycheck at the Shops (like our team did), you impacted the lives of our vendors and Berwyn’s business community.
Celebrating our 2022 Graduating Cohort!
To commemorate the completion of the Berwyn Shops’ inaugural season, we hosted a graduation ceremony on January 27, 2023. Community partners, frequent shoppers, friends, and family joined us in celebrating the season’s successes, thanking the Berwyn community for their overwhelming support, and highlighting our incredible vendors!
Also joining the festivities were our Platinum Community Partners who have supported this homegrown project since groundbreaking. Specifically, we’d like to thank Mayor Robert J. Lovero, Berwyn City Council, Cook County Small Business Source, Women’s Business Development Center, BMO Bank, and Industrial Fence, Inc. for your dedication to the Shops. The Shops would not exist without each of you!
One more time, join us in celebrating the graduating cohort of the Berwyn Shops! We hope that you look forward to their upcoming grand openings, exciting announcements, and the Shops season 2023!
For a recap of the 2022 Season’s highlights, check out the Berwyn Shops photo galleries.
Robert J. Lovero
"As the Mayor of Berwyn, I am incredibly proud of the Berwyn Shops. This homegrown project has truly become a community space and a shopping destination for residents and visitors alike!"
"We are all so proud of you and look to you as prime examples, leaders, and mentors who could help guide entrepreneurs throughout the entire county. The Berywn Shops should exist in every community to support our start-ups!"
"I am pleased to announce that Mayor Robert J. Lovero and Berwyn City Council will be offering $10,000 grants to the graduates who locate in one of our three TIF districts!
Thank you again to our Community Partners for all of their support!"
"Graduation is bittersweet. I already miss seeing our inspiring vendors on site every Friday, but I am SO PROUD of everything they’ve accomplished in the last 6 months!"
Maura Mitchell WBDC
"It has been a pleasure getting to know the small business owners through our monthly trainings. From the first session, it was evident that the vendors were committed to growing their businesses and absorbing as much information as possible."
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Voices from the Community
"The Berwyn Shops was truly a magical experience that I will forever be grateful for"
Special Thank You
To our 2022 vendors: THANK YOU! It has been an absolute pleasure getting to know you, your products, and your small businesses. We are incredibly PROUD of you and all the hard work you have put into the first season of the Berwyn Shops. You have demonstrated excellence, patience, creativity, and passion. CONGRATS on graduating from this homegrown project! We cannot wait to see what you do next!
Learn How to Get Involved in the 2023 Berwyn Shops Season!
Berwyn Shops: A Homegrown Project
Berwyn Shops is a retail incubator for the City of Berwyn designed to support emerging entrepreneurs, artisans, and makers who are committed to taking their businesses to the next level. Located at 6931 Roosevelt Road in Berwyn, IL, this homegrown project features twelve 12'x15' cottage-style shops. During the season, the shops open Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays from June to mid-December.
The participating shop vendors will be selected by a jury committee of 13 community volunteers, including Roosevelt Road business owners, local stakeholders, Berwyn residents, and prospective clients of the Berwyn Shops.
However, this homegrown project would not be possible without our Community Partners. Community Partners will be providing education, resources, and financial support for the Berwyn Shops. If you would like to partner with the BDC and the City of Berwyn, follow the link below!
Vendor Success Stories
Cook Off Competition
The Vulgar Vegan
Berwyn Shops' own The Vulgar Vegan competed in Ingredion's Plant Based Protein Cook Off Competition at The Hatchery Chicago and placed fourth, competing against catering companies and those with backgrounds in food science. Judges praised The Vulgar Vegan's Kick-A BBQ entry and said the No Meat on These Ribz tasted like "braised ribs." This was The Vulgar Vegan team's first ever cook-off competition and first trophy!
Plant Care Workshop
Fabiola, owner of @makrame.green, connected two hundred students from @mortoncollegepanthers with nature. During her workshop “Hug Me,” the students decorated pots and replanted beautiful Cacti and Succulents - making the event a complete success! Get your own gorgeous plant today at the Berwyn Shops or online at Makrame Green!
Elizabeth Aguirre from Juicey Gems did an amazing job representing the Berwyn Shops on the Werk Mija Podcast! She shared her journey from starting an online store, to selling her products at the Berwyn Shops. Thank you Werk Mija for hosting one of our AMAZING vendors! To listen to the full podcast, visit the Werk Mija page or listen to Episode 35 of the Werk Mija Podcast wherever you listen to your podcasts or visit the Werk Mija website - HERE!