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RAVENSWOOD —Ravenswood shops are offering holiday gift boxes featuring locally made items. 

The Greater Ravenswood Chamber of Commerce is putting together the surprise gift boxes, which will be filled with products and gift cards from local shops, as part of an effort to direct holiday shopping to local businesses as they weather the coronavirus pandemic.

People can choose from three gift boxes:

  • 12 Days of Ravenswood: Artists and Makers. Includes 12 small items, like handmade prints and pottery, and 12 $5 gift cards. Costs $69.99.
  • 12 Days of Ravenswood: Food & Drink. Includes 12 “bites and brews” from local restaurants, like coffee beans and seasoning rubs, plus 12 $5 gift cards. Costs $69.99.
  • 24 Days of Ravenswood: 24 goods and 24 $5 gift cards. Costs $129.99.

The items inside the boxes will be a surprise. But they will include goodies from local Ravenswood businesses, including:

It’s more difficult than ever for local businesses to reach customers because of the pandemic, said Gene Wagendorf III, associate director of the Greater Ravenswood Chamber of Commerce. 

“They’re under extraordinary financial pressures with the pandemic and are now heading into what, for many of places we love, may be a make-or-break holiday season,” Wagendorf said.

Restrictions put in place to slow the spread of the virus mean the chamber isn’t able to host the types of holiday events it would normally use to spotlight Ravenswood businesses. That’s where the idea for the surprise holiday boxes came in.

“Part of the appeal of these gift boxes is that we can connect people with 24 different businesses that they might not have tried before,” Wagendorf said. “Or maybe they get a box with a couple of their favorites inside but they also get turned on to a few businesses that they weren’t aware of.” 

Orders can be placed here and the boxes will be available for pickup Nov. 28, Dec. 2 and Dec 12 at the Greater Ravenswood Chamber of Commerce, 1770 W. Berteau Ave.

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Lincoln Square, North Center, Irving Park reporterrnrnalex@blockclubchi.orgnnLincoln Square, North Center, Irving Park Twitter @avhndz

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