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Ream's owners buying church lot in Elburn, looking to move across the street

ELBURN – Janelle Ream said the Ream family has, for years, thought of finding a larger space for Ream’s Elburn Market. It turns out that site will be right across the street.

Owners Janelle and Randy Ream have a deal in place to purchase a vacant parking lot, which is owned by the Elburn-based Community Congregational Church. Ultimately, the plan is to build a new, larger home for the award-winning market. Janelle Ream said the store can get crowded at times.

“We have dreams about what we will do with it,” she said.

Ream’s Elburn Market is at 128 N. Main St., on the west side of Route 47 in downtown Elburn. The vacant lot is almost directly across from the market, extending to the north, on the east side of the street.

That lot has been controversial in the village, as the church, citing liability issues, had closed the lot to public parking last year.

Business owners eyed the lot as a solution to a perceived downtown parking shortage, and there was some consideration about the village purchasing it.

Randy Ream previously had talked of buying the lot as well.

Janelle Ream said she understood building on the lot would not solve any parking issues, but she also said customers at the market typically are in and out in less than 15 minutes.

Neither side would reveal the price, but the lot was listed for $199,000 in the spring.

The sign in front of the lot now indicates it has been sold.

The closing date is in July, Janelle Ream said.

From the time of purchase until any building takes place, she said the lot would be used for customer parking.

There would be restrictions. For instance, overnight parking would not be allowed.

Mary Royer, a moderator at Community Congregational Church, said church members are pleased the lot is being sold to the Reams.

“We’re delighted,” Royer said. “I believe they will be wonderful neighbors.”

Ream’s Elburn Market has been in business since 1904. According to its history listed at, Robert and Phyllis ream bought the business in 1954, and the store has become a specialized meat market.

Elburn Village President Dave Anderson said the news is good for Elburn.

“We are excited for them and for the village,” Anderson said. “They are an integral part of the village, and they have been for many years.”

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