The city is asking its residents their opinions on the best Pekin has to offer – in restaurants, art and culture, entertainment, even in tattoos.

More than five dozen replies came Monday within hours after the first annual Best of Pekin survey was launched to identify and promote the city’s best and most popular attractions in nearly 30 categories.

“It’s something that’s needed,” said City Planner Katy Shackelford. “A lot of new people are coming into the area. They ask where they can get a good haircut, what are the better car repair shops in town.”

The endeavor is the product of the city’s Tourism Committee, comprised of city staff members and business leaders that meets monthly, Shackelford said.

Voting, both online and through a form available at City Hall, will continue until midnight on New Year’s Eve. Only one vote is allowed per category and per email address. Finalists will be announced in January, with awards to follow.

“The winners will get a special decal they can put on their (business) doors. It’s a friendly competition,” Shackelford said, but one that earns the victors bragging rights for the coming year until the next contest.

The survey features six main categories, each with a sub list of choices. Under Music and Entertainment, for example, is best in local bands, spot for live music, festival and date night destination. City Life offers best Pekinite to follow on social media, Pekin ambassador, historic landmark, attraction and street.

“It will be interesting to see who people think has been our best ambassador, who has best represented our city,” now and in the past, Shackelford said.

Online voters can find the survey under Recent News at and at

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