Hometown Techover

Woodstock is a Winner!

In April 2021, T-Mobile announced T-Mobile Hometown Grants, a $25 million, five-year initiative to support the people and organizations that help small towns across America thrive and grow. Since the program’s start, T-Mobile has given more than $4.4 million dollars to kickstart 100 community development projects across 36 states, including the latest grant winning recipients. Pretty cool, isn’t it?

T-Mobile Hometown Grants is just one of the many initiatives underscoring T-Mobile’s commitment to rural America. Beyond amazing deals on plans and new devices, the Un-carrier’s unleashed a new broadband service available to nearly 10 million rural households — T-Mobile Home Internet — and a commitment to build hundreds of new stores and create 7,500 new jobs supporting the wireless needs of communities across rural America. More than just bringing wireless, T-Mobile wants to be part of the community and help small towns thrive.

The journey was long but paid off for Woodstock.

The Pitch

In April of 2021,  Real Woodstock took up the task of applying to T-Mobile’s Inaugural Hometown Techover on behalf of the city of Woodstock and its resident and businesses. Within two weeks Real Woodstock worked to write, design, coordinate, shoot and edit the video you know as our pitch video. That’s not all, we also reached out to friends and family to also submit entries. Woodstock had 10 additional entries along with the video submitted by Real Woodstock, 9 of which we were able to track down. There is still one mystery entry.  Thankfully they each all took the time to send in essays for Woodstock’s consideration.

Top Ten Towns Are Chosen

It techs a village.  In April 2021, T-Mobile unveiled a contest to win a T-Mobile Hometown Techover — a $3 million tech makeover for an American small town, including a $200,000 grant, 5G network enhancements, a Little League® baseball field refurbishment, a free concert featuring multi- platinum duo Florida Georgia Line … and so much more. The chosen town will become the 5G model for communities across the U.S., showcasing the power of the country’s largest, fastest and most reliable 5G network — T-Mobile’s. Thousands entered, and 10 extraordinary communities representing the heart of small-town America were selected as finalists.  With a balloon drop and 1,500 magenta treats on the ready July 15, 2021, guests were invited to the Woodstock Opera House to hear that Woodstock had been chosen as a top 10 finalist and winning a $50,000 grant to jump start an evolution in Woodstock.

Being chosen as a top ten community did not happen by accident.  Since the April application there had been emails, calls and Zooms between Woodstock and various departments in T-Mobile going on behind the scenes. The work was continued by many and lead by Real Woodstock along with our local T-Mobile store.   

View Top 10 announcement gallery here.
Read about the announcement here and here 

And the Winner is…

August 28, 2021 was a heck of a show in Woodstock. The combined marching bands from Woodstock and Woodstock North High Schools, dance team and color guard lead into the biggest announcement yet to hit Woodstock. T- Mobile and the life-size video screen made many dreams come true when Jon Freier, President of Consumer Groups for T-Mobile, announced that Woodstock had won the inaugural Hometown Techover.

Out of the 10 incredible finalist towns, Woodstock took the win based on enthusiasm, commitment to the process, and the special nature of the town. With personal involvement from the mayor, city manager, public works, chamber of commerce president and many other key townspeople, Woodstock was a competition stand-out.

View winner announcement gallery here.

Read more about the win here and here and here.

Prize Packs, Perks of the Win

As part of their winnings, the town of Woodstock will score a mass of tech goods and services for the community-as-a-whole as well as individual households, worth more than $3 MILLION.  Among the goodness:

Enhanced 5G Network: T-Mobile’s 5G coverage across Woodstock has nearly doubled in the last year, now covering most of the city and key locations. And, T- Mobile speeds have improved 400%, increasing from 99.5 Mbps to nearly 400 Mbps on average. In addition to several existing T-Mobile sites all receiving major 5G network enhancements, additional sites were deployed – boosting coverage and performance to the west residential areas of Woodstock and the Woodstock Downtown and Historic Square. Plus, even more sites are expected to deploy by the end of September 2022 – which will further bolster 5G Ultra Capacity to northeast Woodstock, Marion Central High School, the Woodstock Country Club, Loyola University Campus and surrounding area.

Community Grant: A $250,000 T-Mobile Hometown Grant and technical assistance services from Smart Growth America (SGA). SGA worked with Woodstock community leaders to narrow down potential projects, which includes building affordable senior housing, increasing walkability and developing a multi-use space in the downtown area, which complement ongoing updates to the town’s comprehensive plan.

Little League® Updates: $250,000 of field refurbishments on Woodstock’s Sullivan and Dream Fields are underway, with updates including upgraded field surfaces and a branded T-Mobile sign recognizing the Un-carrier’s contribution. Woodstock is also receiving T-Mobile Little League Call Up Grant support and free live streaming through FamCam 5G.  Read about it here.

Connecting Students: Through T-Mobile’s Project 10 Million, 3,000 students across 12 schools, nearly half of all enrolled students in Woodstock Community Unit School District 200, received free internet and mobile hotspots.  Read about it here.

Family Prize Packs: Woodstock families received a tech-focused prize that included four 5G smartphones, one year of free wireless service with Magenta Max, one year of T-Mobile 5G Home Internet and a free Samsung UHD-TV.  Read about it here.

View giveaway gallery here.

Hometown Hootenanny with Florida Georgia Line

T-Mobile has officially painted the town of Woodstock, Illinois magenta.

It’s been almost one year since T-Mobile crowned Woodstock, IL the winner of its Hometown Techover – a $3 million tech makeover for an American small town – which included a $250,000 grant from T-Mobile, 5G network enhancements, a Little League® baseball field refurbishment, 100 supercharged family tech prize packs that include 5G smartphones with a year of free service, and a free concert featuring diamond-selling, award-winning duo Florida Georgia Line which took place August 13, 2022 at the McHenry County Fairgrounds.

Read and See about it here, here and here.

Concert galleries – 400 Ft and Below, Ken Farver, and Melissa Emory for Real Woodstock. 

T-Mobile Continues to Embrace Woodstock

The concert may have happened but Woodstock's partnership with T-Mobile continues for life.  Work continues on upgrading towers, finishing touches at Sullivan and Dream Field are happening and Woodstock residents are eligible for amazing T-Mobile discounts.  That's 20% off new lines for new and existing customers.  

Special Thanks go out to all the Superstars that made this Happen for Woodstock

400 Ft and Below

Tara Bols

Tonya Chambers

City of Woodstock - City Hall Staff

City of Woodstock - Public Works Department

City of Woodstock - Police Department

Darrin Flynn

Danielle Gulli

Gerry Gulli

Lauren Hamilton

Keith Johnson

Jodie Kurtz-Osborne

Maureen Lawson

Lisa Lohmeyer

Arlene Lynes

Kevin Lyons

Lori Macarus

McDaniels Marketing

Melissa McMahon

Michael Moan

Naturally McHenry County

Lynn Royales

Beth Schweitzer

Sue Stelford

Roscoe Stelford

Don Thomas

Mayor Mike Turner

Dave Zinnen

Woodstock Willie

Woodstock Little League

Woodstock Public Library Staff

Woodstock School District 200

Woodstock Area Chamber of Commerce and Industry

Woodstock Area Chamber of Commerce and Industry - Chamber Ambassadors

Woodstock Recreation Department Staff