Wednesday, April 22, 2009

44. Vietnamese restaurants in Champaign-Urbana

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Do you crave for Vietnamese food?

At one time a couple of years ago, the Vietnamese food connoisseurs would have no option to satisfy their cravings in Champaign-Urbana area. The last vietnamese restaurant, Pho-Tran, on University avenue, closed a couple of years ago.

But last year, and early 2009, there opened 2 new Vietnamese restaurants in the area.

Here they are:

1. Xinh Xinh Cafe

Xinh Xinh Cafe
114 North Vine Street
Urbana, IL
Open Monday through Saturday 10:30 a.m. to 9:30 p.m.; closed on Sundays

It is the newest Vietnamese place in the area. Located right next to Schnucks on Vine Street in Urbana. The prices are quite low, and the food is amazing. The best part is the smiling owner, Shai Mauth, who will occassionally chit-chat with you.

One small catch, they only take cash, so better fill your wallet. Of course, most of their prices are less than $8-10, so you won't need too much.

You can get regular updates from Xinh Xinh Cafe on Twitter.

Also, check out Champaign Taste's Review of Xinh Xinh cafe.

2. Saigon Vietnamese Cuisine

Saigon is in Savoy, it opened in 2008. It is in the same place where a Chinese buffet used to be, but closed after a short while.

According to Champaign-Taste's review, the food is good, though people have commented that their prices are a bit high.

Saigon Vietnamese Cuisine
On South Neil St. in Savoy, next to Friar Tuck (Savoy Plaza)

Phone: 217-351-8880

Open 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Sunday through Thursday, 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. Friday and Saturday

Saturday, April 4, 2009

43. Filing Taxes in Champaign-Urbana

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So, it's tax time again. Ugghh. Like death, Taxes are an inevitable part of our lives. And if you are baffled by the complex hotchpotch also known as the Tax code, and frightened at the thought of IRS, you might try some help!!

If you need help preparing your taxes, following are the places in Champaign-Urbana where you can get it done. Typically, they charge you something around $100 or so for Federal taxes, and similar amounts for state taxes. Remember, you can probably get these done free by using software like TaxCut, or TurboTax.

Happy Tax Season!! Remember to file before April 15, that's the deadline!!!!


Jackson Hewitt Tax Services

  • 405 N Broadway Ave, Urbana, IL - (217) 328-3278
  • 1704 W Bradley Ave, Champaign, IL - (217) 355-8200
  • 807 Bloomington Rd # A, Champaign, IL - (217) 352-8300
  • 2610 N Prospect Ave, Champaign, IL - (217) 355-8100
  • 124 S Century Blvd, Rantoul, IL - (217) 893-9500
  • 505 S Dunlap Ave, Savoy, IL - (217) 356-2063

H&R Block Income Tax Preparation Services

  • 2704 N Prospect Ave, Champaign, IL - (217) 356-3841
  • 114 N Vine St, Urbana, IL - (217) 328-3457
  • 2000 N Neil St, Champaign, IL - (217) 351-9074
  • 105 N Mattis Ste B, Champaign, IL - (217) 352-1462
  • 1605 S Prospect Ave, Champaign, IL - (217) 355-1041

Accounting Plus Tax Solutions
2404 Windsor Pl, Champaign, IL - (217) 351-5010

Bray Drake Liles & Richardson
1606 Willow View Rd # 1E, Urbana, IL - (217) 337-0004

Larry D Buhrmester & Associates Inc
202 W Springfield Ave, Champaign, IL - (217) 352-0022

Brya Insurance Agency
2002 South Neil Street, Champaign, IL - (217) 355-5555

Clifton Gunderson LLP
2511 Galen Dr, Champaign, IL - (217) 351-7400

Franklin Financial Planning
1606 Willow View Rd # 2F, Urbana, IL - (217) 337-7526

Martin Hood Friese & Associates Llc
2507 S Neil St, Champaign, IL - (217) 351-2000

Kemper CPA Group LLC
1701 Broadmoor Dr # 120, Champaign, IL - (217) 351-2073

Hutchens John P
620 W Church St, Champaign, IL - (217) 398-0016

Lynch Tax Services
900 S Mattis Ave, Champaign, IL - (217) 355-6647

Michael J Smith & Associates
3127 Village Office Pl, Champaign, IL - (217) 378-4311

Commercial Services Co
3203 Brentwood Dr, Champaign, IL - (217) 352-3362

Lafferty & Associates
308 W Hill St, Champaign, IL - (217) 352-4132

Tax Shop
2108 W John St # B, Champaign, IL - (217) 352-4884

Yettke & Associates
409 Devonshire Dr, Champaign, IL - (217) 359-1065

Lain Accounting Services
4 Henson Pl # 5, Champaign, IL - (217) 356-4701

Kallembach & Associates
701 Devonshire Dr # 201, Champaign, IL - (217) 355-8979

Lichti Barbara
909 Devonshire Dr, Champaign, IL - (217) 355-2244

Hays & Associates PC
401 E Springfield Ave, Champaign, IL - (217) 352-4743

Katsaros & Associates
2301 Village Green Pl # B, Champaign, IL - (217) 356-6977

Accounting & Tax Office Llc
121 W Water St, Urbana, IL - (217) 367-5409

Stegemeier Henriette C
604 Hessel Blvd, Champaign, IL - (217) 355-4514

Nelson CPA & Associates
303 S Mattis Ave # 201, Champaign, IL - (217) 352-3788

Nelson CPA & Associates
426 E Champaign Ave, Rantoul, IL - (217) 892-4887

Liberty Tax Services
1403 E Washington St, Urbana, IL - (217) 344-5659

Tax Doctor
804 Eastwood Dr, Mahomet, IL - (217) 586-1196

Friday, March 6, 2009

42. The Unofficial St. Patrick's day in Champaign Urbana

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If you have been anywhere near the campustown on certain Fridays in March, and come up with a huge throng of greenish looking leprechauns, don't start pinching yourself to see if you are dreaming or not. You have just stumbled into the "Unofficial Saint Patrick's Day" in Chambana.

Here is what UofI wiki has to say about it:

Unofficial Saint Patrick's Day, or commonly known as Unofficial, is a local event on the Urbana-Champaign campus, which aims to replace the celebration of the official Saint Patrick's Day holiday with excessive drinking of alcohol.

Champaign bar owner Scott Cochrane created the event to increase business because the week of spring break on the academic calendar usually includes Saint Patrick's Day, which leads students to celebrate away from the campus.

The event is celebrated usually the weekend before the official Saint Patrick's Day holiday. Bars might open as early as 7 a.m., and students wear T-shirts with slogans such as "Drink 'til you're Irish" or "Irish I were drunk." One T-shirt slogan read: "Tap the keg, forget the class... it's Unofficial, so fill my glass!"

Things are not really as rosey as the above note suggests. On this day, you'll find a lot of underage drinkers, passed out here and there, or coming to class drunk. The police (Champaign, Urbana, County, and of course UofI ones) have a field day ... and nab a lot of underage drinkers.

However, things can often get deadly ... a few years ago, a UofI alumnus died when the motor bike she was riding crashed into a pole on Wright street between Green and Springfield. So, be careful when you are driving through campustown , better avoid going through the area altogether.

There is of course, the "official" Saint Patrick's day, but the drinking frenzy is much less on that one.