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Wednesday, 13 February 2008 03:07

Retail Store You'd Like to See in the Quad Cities

1. Macy's


3. Circuit City


Restaurant You'd Like to See in the Quad Cities

1. Cheesecake Factory

2. Joe's Crab Shack

3. P.F. Chang's


Underrepresented Cuisine

1. Fresh seafood

2. Authentic Italian

3. Indian


Local Business You'd Like to See Re-Open

1. Fireworks Coffeehouse & Pottery Painted by You

2. K's Merchandise

3. Centro


Best Place for the Rhythm City Casino

1. Right where it is

2. Interstate 80

3. 65th and Brady streets


Best Reuse of Abandoned Commercial Space

1. Parks/recreation/greenspace

2. Loft apartments

3. Freight House


We are all starting to think about our planetary impact in terms of ecological footprints, and perhaps this is why the answer to create greenspaces came up more than once in this year's poll. Of course, it may also have to do with the fact that greenspaces are a point of attraction in many of the world's largest and keenly designed cities. Paris has more than one famous park, and not far away from us in Chicago, Millennium Park has garnered a lot of attention since its construction in 2004. Not only do greenspaces provide a place to enjoy a more natural setting in the midst of so many buildings and cars, but they also enhance the civic space by promoting recreation. Many of you will be happy to hear that Tim Ridder, the environmental coordinator of the Green Team in Rock Island, is looking forward to developing the Rock Island Armory space now occupied by Jumer's Casino Rock Island into something far more green. The project is in the beginning stages of design, but once the casino moves out in the fall of 2008, the ball will start to roll. Tim informed me that not only are they going to design a beautiful park that will act as a new centerpiece for the downtown, but they are working to create a downtown that is more pedestrian-friendly, with bike lanes and solar lighting for the alleyways in addition to filling potholes and improving roads in need of maintenance. Perhaps the best part of all is that this work toward creating a greener downtown will not only help the ecological system of this area, but the economic situation of the city, and eventually the individual citizens themselves. Can anyone else hear the Beatles singing in the back ground? "You have to admit it's getting better / It's getting better all the time."

- Stephanie Burrough



Best Location for a Downtown Grocery Store

1. Rock Island

2. Moline

3. Davenport


Best Use of the Rock Island Armory

1. Park/greenspace

2. Ampitheater/bandshell

3. Military use

3. Museum

3. Tear it down


Best Civic Use of $1 Million

1. Street repair

2. Addressing homelessness

3. Tax cuts


Local Resident You'd Like to See Run for Office

1. Bill Fisher

2. Jerry Kelly

2. Neil Kastor


Perusing the vote totals and nominations in these three categories, the Reader staff had one question: Who is Bill Fisher?

Fisher won our "Local Resident You'd Like to See Run for Office" category and topped the nominations for two "Best Kept Secret" categories: "Volunteer" and "Unelected Public Servant." But nobody here had heard of him.

Fisher, it turns out, is president of the Celtic Heritage Trail of the Quad Cities, a four-year-old not-for-profit organization that aims "to identify and preserve the Celtic heritage of the Quad Cities and to inform, educate, and inspire the general public, students, tourists, and Celts with programs about Celtic contributions to this region," according to its Web site (

"There's a great impact of Celtic pioneers that settled" in the Quad Cities, Fisher said.

The organization's efforts have been noble if modest. It has placed signs at six important Celtic-history sites in downtown Davenport (Third and Ripley; Second and Main; 421 Brady; roughly 700 feet east of the Dock restaurant; Federal and Farnum; and Seventh and Farnum). Fisher said four more signs will be put up in the spring. A brochure detailing the sites is available at Cup A Joe in Moline.

And the group will be leading four presentations in March as part of the Independent Scholars' Evenings program at the Moline Club.

As for Fisher, he's a former Moline police officer who retired in 1985 and considered running for Moline mayor in the mid-1980s. But after a law-enforcement career, the slings and arrows of politics seemed a bit too familiar. "I don't want anything to do with" running for mayor, he recalled thinking.

Fisher said he did serve four terms as a township trustee in Moline, but that's a pretty low-profile gig.

So is he willing to heed to call for another run at public office? Fisher said no, but we're happy for him to continue his work with the Celtic Heritage Trail of the Quad Cities.

- Jeff Ignatius


Amenity That Would Have the Biggest Positive Impact on the Quad Cities

1. Passenger-rail service

2. Improved I-74 bridge

3. Amusement park


Band You'd Like to Play the i wireless Center

1. Dave Matthews Band

2. Eagles

2. Nickelback


Riverfront Industrial/Commercial Site You'd Like to See Redeveloped

1. Case IH in East Moline

2. East side of lock and dam
in Davenport

3. Rock Island Armory

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