So established is Circle K Midwest that even brand-new vehicles recognize what its red-and-white logo stands for—fuel, snacks, and everything else a car might need to keep powering down the road with its driver. Circle K's story starts back in 1951, when Fred Hervey bought three Kay's Food Stores in El Paso, Texas. Under his guidance, these three little shops grew into the more than 3,000 convenience stores that crouch on our nation's street corners today.
After rolling up to a Circle K, drivers can pump their faithful roadsters full of high-octane fuel and send them skipping through a car wash to experience the cleansing touch of Blue Coral Beyond Green and Rain-X products. Then it's time to step inside the air-conditioned shop for a peek at the provisions. Rows of sodas hibernate behind glass doors, and snacks, candy, and their ATM guardians stand boldly out in the open. Some Circle Ks also offer the Take Away Fresh Café, which presents an appetizing lineup of healthy road fare including sandwiches, fruit cups, and fresh-cut vegetables. Drivers can gear up for a long drive with premium coffees or enjoy a cold Polar Pop, whose specially formulated cup keeps drinks colder thanks to the family of tiny snowmen trapped in its foam walls.
Social occasions just got more festive thanks to Parties by Terri. The business’ namesake channels 10 years in the party biz to furnish customers with an array of party supplies and services—from themed goodie buckets to face painting to sprinkled cake pops. Terri’s staff is also on hand to set up and take down decorations, and can even serve as hostess to ensure stress-free events.
For the past 14 years, the knowledgeable beverage aficionados at Fine Wines & Liquors have carefully selected palate-spanning spirits and wines from around the world to bring their customers a versatile selection. The passionate staff samples 90% of their wines available for purchase, giving them an intimate familiarity with nearly every wine's bouquet, mouthfeel, and credit rating. Tasty vinos from Spanish, American, French, and Argentine vineyards tempt customers with the fruity notes of pinot noir, crisp sweetness of chardonnay, and pleasant pepperiness of garnache. Smoky scotches, oak-aged rum, and bottles of juniper-kissed gin also furnish social gatherings with delicious pours of spirits from distilleries such as The Speyside, McDowell's, and North Shore. Beverage enthusiasts can also opt to join the wine and beer of the month clubs, which furnish members with a new bottle every 30 days.
It's more than just the retro, 1960s-style sign that nods to a bygone era at Malloy's Finest Wine & Spirits. The huge maroon marquee pointing to the Glen Ellyn location on Roosevelt Road invokes a pleasant feeling of nostalgia, but so does the friendly, attentive service of the resident beverage experts. The company has been around since the repeal of Prohibition and continually updates its international display of wine and spirits to meet customers' changing needs. Wine and beer connoisseurs host free tastings every Saturday and guide patrons through highly rated vintage varietals that are tucked safely in a cellar.
For more than 45 years, the luminaries at Crest Lighting have been matching customers with ideal and elegant custom-lighting solutions. Spice up sitting rooms with a 27-inch wood-and-rattan table lamp ($74.88) or make menus more readable with a 32-inch buffet lamp in antique silver ($74.10). Homeowners can also enlighten living rooms with a brilliant mat-nickel-and-alabaster-glass three-light chandelier ($74.96) or bedeck broom closets with an etched-glass bronze wall sconce ($72.91). Stocked with wares from more than 150 brand-name manufacturers, each Crest Lighting showroom also features a host of outdoor-lighting options, including vintage rust wall lights ($73.01). All lighting showrooms are open Monday–Saturday, and today’s deal is not valid for the purchase of light bulbs, electrical-supply material, dimming equipment, or cold-fusion-powered nightlights.