Introducing JoAnne Vrtacnik 1

Real Wives of SW Lake County

Who lives in your house?

Mark, my husband of 20 years now; our daughters Madelyn (17) and Karleigh (14); my two nieces Aislinn (4) and Kaelynn (3) of whom we now have custody and our two puppies Bella and Colada.


Do you work outside the home?

I work as the member relations manager for the Lake Zurich Area Chamber of Commerce.

Are you native to or transplanted to the area?

We moved here two and a half years ago from Ohio for my husband’s job with Heinen’s Grocery Store.

What are your favorite Lake County holiday happenings?

All of the tree lighting celebrations… and the arrival of Santa Clause…and all of the holiday decorations!

Your guiltiest food pleasure?

My homemade Kolachky Christmas cookies!

How would your best friend describe you?

Caring, genuine, outgoing, fun, crazy, smart and sassy.

Your favorite date night?

What’s that?! LOL! With four kids now, our date nights are being temporarily stored in the iCloud!

A unique or interesting fact about yourself?

I am one of eight children and I grew up on an 87-acre vegetable farm in Ohio where I learned the appreciation for hard work—and great tasting produce! I also love to fish and I fillet what I catch myself.

What would you name the autobiography of your life?

Life’s A Dance

What is your favorite holiday movie?

The Santa Clause starring Tim Allen.

What are your family holiday traditions?

We go to midnight Mass on Christmas Eve and we hide the Christmas Pickle in Christmas tree.

Who is the person you respect the most, and why?

My husband. Not many people would do what he has done for my family, especially by taking in two little ones when our girls will be off to college soon. His selfless acts, along with his tremendous amount of support and unconditional love, are beyond what words can describe.

Your favorite holiday song?

“The Christmas Song” by Nat King Cole. It really makes me think of how fortunate I am to be able to spend the holidays with my children… yet at the same time it also inspires me to go out and be with those that don’t have family, are lonely or are suffering.

What is on your Christmas list?

I don’t have a Christmas list.  I am blessed to have what I have and will continue to work harder to get the things that I want. I just want to be healthy for my family and set a good example for our children and others. I couldn’t ask for anything more.

What are you most grateful for this holiday season?

Those that have helped and supported us through the transition of bringing the two little ones into our home. They say it takes a community to raise a child… I truly understand that and am forever grateful.