What Should Go Here? Clock Tower Gifts

Weigh in on what you would like to see at the site of the former Clock Tower Gifts at Wolf Road and 187th Street.

When Clock Tower Gifts quietly closed up shop in January, it left a large and public vacancy at 187th and Wolf.

In the same complex as local mainstay and several other stores and salons, the site has visibility, space and, of course, a clock tower with the Mokena logo on it.

What would you like to see there? A restaurant? A boutique? Indoor mini-golf?

Let us know in the comments below or tell us on Facebook.

Sign up for a Patch user account to tell us what you think would be great to go in the site.

Jill April 02, 2012 at 11:53 AM
I didn't go into this store much at all - mainly because they had inconvient hours. The last time that I did go in, the store was messy & unorganized looking. Only when I was walking out to leave, did one of the workers then ask me if I needed help with anything. They were too busy "chatting it up" with eachother. It would be nice if someone could make it work as a gift shop, sort of on the line of a Halmark Store, with reasonable prices.
Anthony A Dina Jr. April 02, 2012 at 12:07 PM
I would like to see an authentic Bagel Deli like they have on the north side of Chicago, it would be a welcome addition to the community.
Terri April 02, 2012 at 12:37 PM
It would be an awesome location for another Coopers Hawk! A location this direction would be so nice.
Kelly Wilson April 02, 2012 at 01:48 PM
Another nice restaurant/bar would be nice! Mokena doesn't really have a lot of options for a nice reasonable restaurant. Fox's menu is quite limited if you're a vegetarian, and Barraccco's is such a rip off and the staff is rude. If you don't have a reservation, Tribes can have a really long wait, and Tommy Nevin's always has a live band playing. Coopers Hawk is extremely expensive for what you're getting. ($10 for a turkey lunch meat sandwich? No thanks.) Something that is reasonably priced, has good beers, and friendly staff. We need more great local businesses in Mokena that are open for dinner. :)
DR- Mokena April 02, 2012 at 05:16 PM
Some good ideas here already listed....unfortunately high rent plays a huge factor in who may move into this nice spot. Just check the vacant strip mall across from the Mokena post office and you'll see how high rent can scare potential businesses away. It's still vacant and the only business ever there was Ed & Joe's pizza which I was sad to see leave. There are a ton of vacant strip mall spots in Mokena (just drive around and count them) you'll be amazed. So any potential business coming in has lots of choices, not just the 187th & Wolf spot here being discussed.
Ron Kenning April 02, 2012 at 05:58 PM
Coopers hawk and any other "Orland" type bar , we do not need! If I want to pay downtown prices I will go downtown! A locally owned neighborhood pub type place would be great , but as mentioned, the rent will keep any place like that away. Mokena is being left behind in comparison to surrounding communities when it comes to establishments! Right along with the festivals and overall quality if living. Time for new leadership?
Steve Pollak April 02, 2012 at 08:37 PM
First of all, we need to get the terminology straight - According to our Village Administration, all of the empty strip malls & store fronts in Mokena are not vacant - They're AVAILABLE and Mokena is poised for business, when the economy rebounds; or for any businesses that aren't welcome in New Lenox, Frankfort, Orland or Tinley! Secondly, the (former) Clock Tower Gifts location is not large enough for most of the suggestions presented; and it's probably not feasible for a restaurant to locate there either, with the offices on the second floor - That's why there are no restaurants, coffee or bagel shops in the multi-use building at the s/w corner of Wolf & Front
Terri April 02, 2012 at 09:33 PM
Not quite sure what is meant by ..."or for any businesses that aren't welcome in New Lenox, Frankfort, Orland or Tinley". If a business is not welcome in any of those area's there must be a reason. Why then would we want that business in Mokena? It is true and sad though how many vacant (available) store fronts there are in the area. If you really want to build up the economy in the area then one of the steps might be to lower some of the rediculous rents. Mokena is a beautiful community but it does however need to keep up with the surrounding areas and offer more to it's residence. The home town feel, home town charm needs the home town activities and businesses.
Rocky Ditka April 03, 2012 at 09:27 PM
I believe that Steve Pollak's comments are somewhat sarcastic and that he is suggesting Mokena can only get the castoffs not welcome in those other communities. We certainly seem behind the curve following development in nearby towns? I'm wondering how we got Penney's. Except for them big retail looks like it finds a way to bypass Mokena. Was there ever a McDonald's or Burger King in Mokena? Clock Tower Gifts was a nice place. Too bad they couldn't make it.
Karen Schultz April 07, 2012 at 01:19 PM
Who do I want to see in the empty tower building? A business who knows how to market itself and our community. It would be great for that building at one of the entrances to our community reflects the talent of our community in some way. Local Made in Mokena products with a small sandwich and coffee shop that allows our wonderful musicians of Mokena highlight their art.
Annie M. April 07, 2012 at 01:43 PM
How about a book store? Or a Caribou Coffee? A Trader Joe's? An Italian Deli?
carol golembiewski April 07, 2012 at 08:21 PM
I loved Clock Tower gift too bad they couldn't stay. I hope they open up again some where close. The village should STOP letting people open businesses in homes along Wolf Road and then the small strip mall store fronts might fill up. To bad, letting these homes become unavailable close to the schools for families where the kids could walk to school.
Mokena Mike April 08, 2012 at 04:37 AM
How about one of those Signs by Tomorrow stores? Mokena needs a place like this to handle the high volume of "For Rent" signs it needs...
Karen Schultz April 08, 2012 at 12:25 PM
I find it amazing that stores in towns such as Mokena do not have hours that fit the needs of the customers. Clock Tower Gifts was always closed and did not do any marketing to draw customers local or otherwise. A store like Ten Thousand Villages that highlighted local talent would be awesome! WE have such great local artists and it would highlight Lincolnway Art Program which is just awesome!!! Too small for Trader Joes but that would be a plus as well.
Karen Schultz April 08, 2012 at 12:28 PM
Ed and Joe's Pizza was one of my favorites..so sad to see it go and the one in Tinley is nothing comparable with the Mokena location we had!!! That group of young people were customer focused, pleasant and professional. Who ever trained that staff did a great job..hats off to you! They blew the competition away in the way they handled themselves. As a business person, I was very impressed. Do I know any of them personally? No in case you were wondering.
Karen Schultz April 08, 2012 at 12:37 PM
I do hope the town of Mokena pursues the development of Wolf Road as a road that carries a variety of businesses with living above it. There is a development called Birkdale in North Carolina that is very popular and has a great draw in the area of great living space above a diverse store base with very wide sidewalks that can accomodate outdoor seating while shopping or dining!!! Very green. Also a draw for others to support local businesses. Shops varied, many high end boutiques and specialty shops. The elevations of the structures were lovely. There was a newer but small movie theater reasonably priced as well. I also visited a town called Davidson which had community bikes available for patrons in the area. They were painted a very very bright yellow and they could be found in various areas of the community used for a short ride here and there and left at a community stand for any one to use. There are many great ideas around the nation that Mokena could bring to its community. We may have lost some of our social capital as we have grown and it would be something to consider growing forward. WE need to differentiate ourselves and offer the unusual to promote ourselves and all of the great talent we have.
Karen Schultz April 08, 2012 at 12:42 PM
The students of Mokena were at one time involved in designing businesses for Mokena. WE should continue that learning lesson. I know my son and friend did design a McDonalds for Mokena. That design disappeard strangely enough. I know there were questions about traffic control for some of the sites considered at that time. If Mokena were to get a McDonalds, I would hope we could have a McDonald Cafe that I see in some parts of the country...very elite. The one in Oak Brook has a piano player at times, I believe and another near Wheaton has televisions in the mirrors in the restrooms believe it or not. There are some great upscale McDonalds.
Cher April 14, 2012 at 01:54 PM
Funny! Mokena Mike. I'd like your sense of humor if it wasn't so sad. Soon our town will look like one of those closed up ghost towns you see traveling around. I like Karen's idea about having something there where the artist & musicians of Mokena can highlight their talent. And I also agree with Carol about stopping the homes around the schools from being rented to businesses. I understand why they do it, the rent is probably half of what it is to rent in the strip malls. Please do not put a McDonald cafe there, it will only become a teen hangout! That always spells "TROUBLE"
Cher April 14, 2012 at 02:04 PM
I agree with Rocky, I too felt that Steve Pollak's comment, that Mokena can only get castoffs, was sarcastic. He was insulting our town when he said we could only get "businesses that aren't welcome in New Lenox, Frankfort, Orland or Tinley!" Like our town is lower class and will take in any "riff-raff".
Karen Schultz April 15, 2012 at 02:49 PM
Can we show our community as its roots truly are? Rich and deep in community support. Mokena should be very selective and grow its business base to result in the mission of the village. Progressive. The town's portfolio should be very balanced in retail, food industry, services, manufacturing, healthcare, education, etc. WE do not need more insurance, beauty shops, or pizza eateries. NOT that I have anything against these businesses, believe me! It is very important to our sustainable economic strength to be very balanced in our business fronts. There are so many ways to build a heahty economy because of our location to rail, expressways both east, west, north and south. WE have one of the top high schools in our state, Lincolonway East! We have a good retail base that surrounds our general living areas. We could take great advantage of our towns highlights IF we had a high end marketing strategy. Our citizens could author that plan easily. If the village and school boards would allow me to present a program that would bring citizens togther for a "Mokena" citizen conference, the citizens could create a matrix of strengths in skills and knowledge to draw key business to our area. Citizens could become part of an active plan to create the destiny they would enjoy for their community. I would be happy to do this to give back to what this community has given me and my family over the years. Mokena has a rich volunteer base that truly cares about eachother.
Karen Schultz April 15, 2012 at 03:00 PM
I would love to see Mokena Patch reveal the richness of our community. I would like to ask Mokena residents to use this space to reveal how great of a community this is to live in, grow their families and pursue their personal dreams. We are very talented, artistic and community focused population supportive of our future productive students. The teachers that live in the town of Mokena are unique to its schools and bring real life skills to the school day. Art has played a signifigant role in my children's innovative edge as adults and I am very thankful to Mokena's PTA efforts, its teachers of Mokena and Lincolnway to integrate innovative and problem solving skills of how to create new ideas and work as teams. Manufacturing is growing leaps and bounds. That artful edge to our education that others have given up is exactly that....a huge edge! Our country is in great need of people making things again. It is crucial to our nations safety. Actually, creating and designing product that can be globally competitive would be the # 1 way to serve our country. I would tell students that if you are a different thinker...you are the drivers of our future. You will become the CEOs of our nation that understand how to create our future of the US...as different...as leaders...as innovative. It is key for our "different thinkers " to know how important you are to all of us. Make great choices as the best way to serve our country.
Ann Onimous June 23, 2012 at 08:27 PM
Wow, I can't believe all the negative comments on the former Clock Tower Gifts. :( The owners were always incredibly nice and willing to go out of their way to order anything I needed. It was the only place I bought Troll beads--they are difficult to find. I have absolutely nothing but good things to say about their customer service. I have no comment on what should go in the building, as I don't live in Mokena, but if it ends up with a Cooper's Hawk, Trader Joes, or some other huge corporate chain, I would be very disappointed. Mokena is a charming place and the village should strive to keep it local. ;)
R.W.Voter June 23, 2012 at 10:28 PM
Personally, I think they should have added a gun department with accessories. They keep the economy going and they could make it appealing to the women. Thank you


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