This Week at Common Ground (Older Posts)

December 2nd, 2014
Join us this First Friday for Once Upon a Holiday.  We’ll be open extended hours and refreshments will be served. Be sure to walk around to our neighboring businesses.  You can find the map here.  Remember that Common Ground gift certificates make a great present. They are available in any amount and never expire.
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November 18, 2014 
Turkey deadline has been extended to tomorrow (Wednesday November 19)!!  Call us by 6pm Wednesday to order your turkey. Turkeys will come in Friday, November 21.
We will be taking orders for dinner rolls from The Garlic Press.  They will come in fresh on Wednesday November 26th.  Whole Wheat or White.
October 29, 2014 
Turkeys are coming! We will be taking pre-orders for Mary’s Organic and/or Free Range turkeys until Wednesday November 12th.  Organic are $5.29/pound and Free Range are $3.59/pound.  Approximate size can be requested, but not guaranteed.  We will have some extra turkeys on hand on a first come, first serve basis.  
October 28, 2014
Dress up the kids and bring them Downtown for Halloween this Friday for Downtown Trick or Treat! 5-7pm
We’ll have an assortment of organic treats for your kids to enjoy!
Many new items have been added to our stock in recent weeks, including three new popcorn seasoning from Frontier
  • Cheddar Cheese
  • Cheddar & Spice
  • Sour Cream & Onion
  • Veggie Pepper Seasoning Blend
  • Check our Spice page for our full selection of bulk spices.
So Delicious seasonal Coconut Milk Beverages: Pumpkin Spice and Mint Chocolate. Non Dairy “Egg” Nogs from Silk and Rice Dream for those ready to jump start the holiday season.
We’re now carrying Thompson Farms locally raised, grass fed lamb in our frozen meat section.
September 29, 2014 
Hello again!
We apologize for the lack of updates to this site in recent months. We’ve been having technical difficulties but hopefully from now on, we’ll be able to update regularly! Be sure to “Like” us on Facebook for most recent updates. You can also follow us on Twitter @CommonGround77 and we’re now on Instagram @CommonGroundBloomington
July 15, 2014 
New today at Common Ground:
Baked fresh Tuesdays and Fridays at The Garlic Press in Normal, six varieties of bagels!
Sesame, Whole Wheat, Pumpernickel, Poppy Seed, Plain and Cinnamon Raisin.
Available with or without your choice of organic cream cheese, tofutti vegan cream cheese, or local goat cheese.
Special introductory price of $1.29, +50 cents for cream cheeses or +70 cents for goat cheese.
June 17, 2014 
Common Ground is now on Instagram! Follow us at
New this week, Lulu’s Chocolate.  Truffles and bars, these delicious chocolates are raw, fair trade, organic, vegan, gluten free, soy-free and sweetened with coconut sugar so it’s low glycemic.  The packaging is recycled paper, printed with veggie ink and the inner foil is even compostable!
June 3, 2014
Look for new specials starting Friday! Fresh produce coming in tomorrow. Check in for current selection.
Just in, limited edition Equal Exchange Organic Coffee from the Biosphere Reserve Series:  Eight Rivers from El Imposible, “The Impossible,” is one of El Salvador’s last remaining forests. A light-medium with aromas of caramel and citrus with flavors of tart cherry and milk chocolate, and a light refreshing mouthfeel.
Downtown is hopping this weekend! Ever wonder what it’s like to live downtown? This First Friday, Tour de Metro lets you inside Downtown homes. Get the full Downtowner experience by shopping at your neighborhood grocery!
Saturday morning is, of course, the Farmers’ Market. We open early at 7:30am every Saturday during the Farmers’ Market season.
Saturday afternoon is the Route 66 Cruise In.  Celebrate the Downtown Connection to Old Route 66 Saturday, June 7. Cars will “cruise-in” to the square beginning at 2 pm and park their vehicles for your viewing until 9 pm.
May 13, 2014
Sjaak’s Chocolates restocked! 
Everyone’s favorite quick bite of chocolate has arrived! Small bites, large bites and bars available now!
Taza Chocolate is also back with a couple new additions. Rum Raisin Chocolate Bars or Wicked Dark 95% Cocao Bars.
April 22, 2014
Happy Earth Day!  
We’ve got more new products in today.
From Traders Point Farm Organics in Zionsville, IN, Traderspoint Creamery 100% Grassfed and Organic Yogurt.   Traditional European style yogurts that are:
  • Active with live cultures
  • Not homogenized
  • farmed sustainably
  • gluten free
  • packaged in glass

Choose between the 5 oz size in Wildberry or Low Fat Vanilla, or Quart size Wildberry.

Also in today from the Wisconsin Sheep Dairy CooperativeSheepmilk Cheese. 
April 18, 2014
New items today
Le Pain des Fleurs Crispbreads. Available in Quinoa, Buckwheat and Chestnut. Organic, Gluten Free No Yeast, No Dairy, No Egg, No Wheat, No Soy, Low Sodium, Crispy and Delicious!
Another addition to our line of So Delicious dairy free products, Coconut milk barista style creamer, French Vanilla flavor.  This quart size package is shelf stable until open!
April 15, 2014
Pekara Bakehouse is offering two special breads for Easter Sunday. Hot Cross Buns available in 6 packs for $6 and Easter Bread which is a twisted wreath of white wheat flour, sugar, almonds, orange zest and anise. $15 You must preorder by April 17th and pick up on Saturday, April 19th.
New from Dreaming Cow CreameryGrass Fed Yogurt.  The cows are unconfined 365 days a year, no hormones, no barns, resulting in a superior tasting yogurt.
April 2, 2014
Goat Milk and Cheese is back! One sign that spring is here is the return of Chevre from Prairie Fruits Farm as well as Goat milk and feta cheese from Green Meadow Farm. Look for more varieties of goat cheeses soon!
Jovial Gluten Free Pasta rated best tasting Gluten Free pasta by Amercia’s Test Kitchen. Made with 100% organic brown rice. Available  in Spaghetti, Penne or Fusilli.
Mary’s Gone Crackers Sticks and Twigs Gluten Free Whole Grain Pretzels are delightfully addictive! Made in a dedicated Gluten Free/Dairy Free/Nut free facility with nutritious organic gluten-free ancient whole grains including brown rice, quinoa, amaranth, and millet, as well as seeds flax, sesame and chia seeds. Try them with our hummus or Hope Foods lentil dip!
March 25, 2014
As promised, new from Vanns Spices are these hard-to-find seasonings.

Blackened Seasoning
Creole Seasoning
Espresso Rub
Mahash Pepper
Raz El Hanout
Tamarind Powder

Want to get more involved with local food? The Downtown Bloomington Farmers’ Market NEEDS YOU!

Volunteer opportunities are available on a monthly or bi-monthly basis.

*They are looking for volunteers to assist with financial
transactions, sharing information, subbing for vendors
when breaks are needed, setting up, and tearing down.

Join a fun team and indulge in fresh, tasty treats!

Contact Marisa Brooks at or
309.829.9599 for more information.

*Early birds and night owls welcome.

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March 18, 2014
We’re getting new things all the time here at The Common Ground, so be sure you check in with us often! By popular demand, we’ve added a line of oils that can be used for face, hair and body.
Tamanu Oil by Aura Cacia Available straight up or with soothing essential oils, Tamanu oil is used for
Diabetic ulcers
Athlete’s foot
Scrapes and cuts
Diaper rash
Stretch Marks
Joint aches and pains
and more!
Also a trendy right now is Argan Oil. You’ll find it in many hair products in drugstores right now, but we have it by Now Foods,  100% pure and certified organic. It can be used right on the skin and hair, or added to other products.
We also have the Aura Cacia Daytime Argan Facial Oil Serum and the Nighttime Baobab Facial Oil Serum that have the added nourishment of essential oils.
In the coming weeks, we’ll be adding even more to our already wide selection of bulk spices.  Look for:
Blackened Seasoning
Creole Seasoning
Espresso Rub
Mahash Pepper
Raz El Hanout
Tamarind Powder
March 5, 2014
We’ve added many new products over the last couple weeks!
We know everyone is more than ready for spring right now, help your skin shed those dead cells with new Baudelaire Loofah bar soaps. Exfoliating seaweed in every bar, slough off winter and moisturize with palm oil, coconut oil,  and karite butter (shea butter).  Three scents! Mint, Spice or Sea.
Numi Organics Savory Teas in flavors like Carrot Curry, Tomato Mint, Broccoli Cilantro, Beet Cabbage and Fennel Spice sound weird but are surprisingly tasty and satisfying. Almost like drinking a flavorful cup of broth, Numi combines real organic vegetables, herbs and decaf teas.
Numi suggests when to enjoy a cup:

  • as a satisfying snack alternative to hold you over
  • as a great complement to a light lunch
  • as a savory way to mix-up your tea routine
  • as a comforting cup when you’re under the weather
  • as a tasty addition to your next cleanse.


February 4, 2014
Tour de Chocolat’ is one of Downtown Bloomington’s most popular events. Participating businesses offer chocolate treats from 5-8pm. Come see us for some local popcorn drizzled with dark chocolate, spicy hot chocolate and other goodies with a Common Ground flair. Also part of the event is the Chocolat’ Challenge. Professional, amateur, and youth chefs are offering up their best chocolate recipes to be judged by local celebrities and the public.  For a complete list of participating businesses and details about the Challenge, check the facebook event page or the Downtown Bloomington Association website.

“You have chocolate here?” Of course we do! Common Ground stocks many quality chocolates, from organic and fair trade to raw. Some of the brands we carry include: Equal ExchangeSjaak’s, Green and Black’s, RawMioAskinosieTaza and GoMaxGo.

Think warm thoughts for Friday, but you can come buy chocolate any day of the week!


January 21, 2014

Brrrr! Hope everyone is keeping warm! It’s the perfect time for baking, making soups and cuddling up with a cup of hot tea or cocoa.  If you haven’t tried our classic Eleven Bean Soup mix yet, now’s the time!

We’re thinking of all the delicious things we might sample out for you during Tour de Chocolat’ on February 7th. If you have a killer chocolate recipe, enter it in the Chocolat’ Challenge. This year they’ve added a Youth category for any chefs 17 and under. Click the link for all the details and how to enter.  Local celebrity judges Bill Flick, Susan Saunders and Jan Lancaster decide the winners!



“I should’ve checked here first!” That’s something we hear a lot when a customer discovers we have that hard-to-find item they’ve been searching for all over town.  A couple popular items right now include cacao nibs and dried white mulberries.
Cacao nibs have become very popular recently. Cacao nibs are pieces of cacao beans that have been roasted and hulled. Nibs taste similar to coffee beans; crunchy and a little bitter. Many are seeking out nibs for the health benefits; they boost energy, are a good source of magnesium, contain chromium to stabilize blood sugar and contain antioxidants. So how do you use them?
One of our customers grinds them with her coffee for an extra caffeine kick and a slight chocolate flavor.  Often they are added to chocolate treats or used as a garnish. Many recipes can be found to incorporate cacao nibs into your diet.
Dried white mulberries have been added to our line of products from Blue Mountain Organics. They are slightly sweet, fruity and chewy. Besides being a tasty snack, the nutritional content is noteworthy.  Packed with Vitamin C, Iron and Calcium, A 2 ounce serving also contains 7 grams of fiber and 6 grams of protein.
Come by to try these or any of the many other unique items we carry!

December 31, 2013

 Happy New Year! Many people resolve to eat healthier and detox in the new year and Common Ground is a great place to start! From our organic foods to our supplements and cleanses, find the method that’s right for you!
Hoppin’ John is a dish consisting of black-eyed peas, rice and sausage (with many variations), traditionally eaten on New Year’s Day to bring luck and properity in the coming year.  Be sure to pick up your ingredients here!  In previous years, we’ve “veganized” the recipe by using Field Roast Mexican Chipotle Grain Meat Sausage with delicious results. Or choose from our selection of local bacon or ham for a traditional taste. Many recipes can be found online, from very simple to complicated, so pick one that suits you and stop by for your supplies.  Click on our recipes tab for a few suggestions.
If the holiday gatherings have your immune system run down, come in for products to build up your defenses. Wellness Formula by Source Naturals, Vitamin C in various forms, Emergen-C,  Super Lysine+ by Quantum, echinacea, garlic, elderberry, and more. We have many herbs in tincture, bulk, capsule or tea bags for every preference.  If you already got hit with something, we have things to help relieve symptoms too. Get some rest!

December 26, 2013

Hope everyone had a nice Christmas!

December 10, 2013

Thanks to the folks that braved the cold Friday night and shared a cookie and cocoa or nog with us. Cookie Recipes are now up on the recipe page. Thanks to Suzanne Faulkner for decorating our window, baking the cookies and providing the recipes!

Shop Small this holiday season! We have lots of great gift ideas; organic socks by Maggie’s, natural fragrances by Nothing Perfume, locally made soaps by Ziba, Red Barn Farms and Natural Mystic, Vegan Chocolates in gift boxes by Sjaak’s, PrairiErth Cookbook, Baby Burpers, catnip mice, and more! Of course, if you can’t decide, we have gift certificates available in any amount! Also consider a LOQI reusable shopping bag as a stocking stuffer or instead of gift wrap! New designs just in!

December 2, 2013

We hope everyone enjoyed their Thanksgiving! We’ve started thinking about Christmas and if you have too, we hope you think of us for your next holiday meal and gifts for your loved ones.  We still have some organic/free range turkeys left that are now 10% off. 

New shirt colors and introducing hooded sweatshirts! We’ve re-stocked our t-shirts again, and this time we ordered a few cozy hoodies too! Printed by Meltdown Creative Works, either would make a great gift!


“Once Upon a Holiday” this Friday and Saturday in Downtown Bloomington! Friday we will be open late and offering refreshments. Downtown activities include live vignettes Friday night,  Christmas parade Saturday morning and more! Check out the list of participating businesses and activities here: Once Upon a Holiday 

November 19, 2013

Thanksgiving is just over a week away! Right now, we are well-stocked with turkeys and faux turkeys.  Plainville Farms Organic and/or Free Range Turkeys are still available as well as a couple local, organic Wettstein Farm turkeys.
For Meatless alternatives, we have the classic Tofurky Roast and Gardein’s seasonal Holiday Roast (with gravy!) is back. If you have a smaller crowd to feed, the 1 pound Field Roast Celebration Roast is a tasty choice.

Check out our produce department for potatoes, sweet potatoes, butternut and acorn squash, salad mix, fresh herbs and more. Of course we have all the staple items you might need; spices, grains, sweenteners, flours, milks, eggs, etc.

For dessert, we have  Wholly Wholesome organic pie crust in whole wheat or white and ready to bake pumpkin pies. Don’t forget your Gluten-Free guests, we carry Gillian’s Gluten-Free Quiche & Pie Crust.
To fill those crusts, we have locally grown pie pumpkins from Dearing Country Farms.

November 5, 2013

Turkeys are in! Tofurkys are in!

Thanksgiving will be here before you know it.  You may be familiar with how we’ve handled ordering turkeys in the past; pre-ordering was required.  Now, we are carrying a selection of turkeys in our freezer so you can walk in and pick one out.

Free Range Turkeys $2.79/pound
Organic and Free Range Turkeys $5.29/pound

All turkeys are antibiotic free, hormone free, humanely raised on a vegetarian diet.

Local, organic turkeys from Wettstein Organic Farm will be available starting Thursday, November 7.  Holds will be honored with pre-payment only. 

For a meat-free option, we have Tofurky Roasts in stock now.  Also in stock,  Gardein individual serving sized Savory Stuffed Turk’y. More veggie options to come!

October 29, 2013

Now carrying Blue Mountain Organics.
We’ve added some products from Blue Mountain Organics to our shelves and freezer.  A variety of unusual seed and nut butters such as pine nut and apricot kernel, as well as whole apricot kernels, trail mixes (with dried mulberries!), sunflower lecithin, raw cacao butter and Cashew Creams (non dairy, raw, frozen dessert in Chocolate, Vanilla and Mint Cacao Chip).

Plan ahead for Thanksgiving.
Tofurky roasts are in stock and we will be getting free-range and organic turkeys in soon. We aren’t doing pre-orders this year on Turkeys, we’ll just have them frozen and you can pick from our selection.

Black Walnuts are back!
Black Walnuts from Martin Tree Farms in Cape Girardeau, MO


October  22, 2013

New breads added from Pekara
This week we are adding Ciabatta and Deli Rye to the bread list, and also the savory croissants will come each delivery day. Keep up-to-date on what’s coming when here.

This Friday, October 25th is the annual Downtown Bloomington Trick-or-Treat from 5-7pm. Dress up the kids and take them around to the businesses, including us!  For a list of participating businesses, see the Facebook Event from the Downtown Bloomington Association.

October  15, 2013

Pekara Bread comes to Common Ground

It’s time to meet Pekara! We have Harvest Bread, Baguettes, Assorted Croissants, Focaccia but we will also have some things unique to Pekara and we’ll be adding the savory croissants on Saturdays. Fresh Bread Deliveries will be every Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday.  Click here for the bread schedule


October 6, 2013

More items added for Fair Trade Month! 

Organic Chocolate Bars from Equal Exchange have arrived at the special price of $2.99 a bar!

  • Dark or Milk Chocolate Caramel Crunch with Sea Salt
  • Lemon Ginger with Black Pepper-a surprisingly delicious flavor combination!
  • Milk Chocolate with a Hint of Hazelnut
  • Panama Extra Dark 80% Cocoa-extremely smooth for a dark chocolate, no bitterness at all!

Win a Trip to Paradise!  

Visit Equal Exchange to enter to win a trip for two to visit the Ecological Farmers of the Sierra Madres of Chiapas in Mexico.

New From the Kitchen

Last weekend we introduced a limited amount of fruit dip or “dessert hummus” in two flavors.  Chocolate Hazelnut and Vanilla Cinnamon. If you were able to try it, please tell us what you thought on our Facebook page. Should we make them again?


October 2, 2013

October is Fair Trade Month! We’re highlighting our selection of products that are Fair Trade Certified.

  •  Equal Exchange Coffees, Hot Cocoa mixes and dried fruits.  All of the coffee is $1 off per pound.  Just in today, a limited edition blend: Bird of Paradise. A sweet, smooth and creamy coffee from El Triunfo Biosphere Reserve in Mexico. While supplies last!
  • And fair trade isn’t just about coffee and chocolates! Dr. Bronner’s and Alaffia skin care are also Fair Trade certified

Also today,

  • Michigan Frozen Organic Blueberries are back!!!!  Every year, we can’t wait for these delicious, plump berries from Pleasant Hill Farm to come in season.