Baja Cali to open soon in downtown Belleville

July 15, 2013 

A new owner has purchased the restaurant at 100 N. High St. in downtown Belleville and plans to bring in a Mexican restaurant.

The new eatery, to be known as Baja Cali, is expected to open as soon as next month after the building's electrical system is updated and a liquor license is secured. Most recently, the space has been the on-again and off-again home of another Mexican food establishment known as Tienes Hombre? (that's Spanish for "are you hungry?"). That restaurant opened there over a year ago before closing last summer, only to reopen months later and then close again, this time for good, last spring.

You may remember the first floor space as the longtime home of The Jug, a restaurant and tavern that was in business for decades.

A family-owned furniture store in Highland has just opened a store in St. Clair County. Kloss Furniture Store opened earlier this month at 1246 Central Park Drive in O'Fallon. The same owners also operate The Tin Shed, a furniture store at 135 Poplar St. in Highland. The business was founded in Highland in 1976. You can call the new store at 618-628-2802 or the Highland store 618-654-9801.

Auffenberg Hyundai in O'Fallon is adding to its service department. The expansion at 1300 Central Park Drive should be ready for customers by the end of the summer. The number there is 618-622-9001.

Dog trainer Sylvia Oglesby has moved her business from Fairview Heights to Belleville. Oglesby has set up her SmartyPaws Dog Training & Sports Center at 6966 W. Main St. in Belleville. She brings 16 years of experience, and initially operated at 10208 Lincoln Trail in Fairview Heights. You can call her at 618-558-8500 or learn more online at

Photographer Sammylane Wirth is selling photo note cards at Eckert Florist in Belleville. Sammi Photo Notecards is a creation of Wirth's business, Sammi Photo Art. Her photo notecards have a photo, usually of flowers or trees, on one side and are blank on the other for writing and also come with envelopes. Cost is $5 each. You can see for yourself at the floral shop, located at 201 W. Main St., or call 618-233-9970 to find out more.

McAlister's Deli at 101 Frey Lane in Fairview Heights is holding its fifth annual Free Tea Day this year on July 25. The tea giveaway day will include games and other freebies. Call 618-622-8590 to learn more.

And finally, The Weingarten at 1780 E. State Route 15 in Belleville will host A Night to Remember on Friday night to help raise colon cancer awareness and celebrate the life of Belleville native Maria Arnold Jung, who had battled the disease for 11 years before her death last March. The event will be held at the wine bar's garden tent where there will be a cash bar, live music, and opportunities to win raffle prizes and auction items as well as learn more about the Colon Cancer Alliance, an organization that Maria supported. The event will be held from 7 to 10 p.m. and admission is free and open to the public.

Contact reporter Will Buss at or 618-345-7822 ext. 24.

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