The Illinois Manufacturers Association is once again bringing back their bracket contest, March Madness style, to determine the Coolest Thing Made in Illinois. The tournament, officially named Makers Madness, spotlights Illinois products through fan participation and online voting.

In order to qualify, the product entered into the competition must be made in Illinois. Nominations are open now until March 3 and the field will be narrowed down to 16 contestants through voting March 3-5. The Coolest Thing Made in Illinois will be announced at an awards ceremony on April 10 at the Governor’s Mansion. This contest brings attention to the many incredible products manufactured in Illinois.

Past winners include the world’s largest mechanical truck, the 797F Mining truck, made by Caterpillar Inc. in Decatur; the Self Regulating Traffic Signal Heater, which heats traffic signals so they will not get frozen or damaged by ice, made by Termico Technologies in Elk Grove Village; and the Rosenberg Moon Habitat, which is a 3D-printed structure used to house humans on the moon, made by Ingersoll Machine tools in Rockford. Nominations and votes can be submitted on the Illinois Manufacturers Association website at

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