Join local writers, actors, and musicians for an evening of stories, wine, and entertainment in the grand tradition of a Parisian salon.
The event will be filled with delectable appetizer specials, delicious drinks, and exquisite storytelling. It will take place at 8 pm on Tuesday, February 7, at Community Tavern, 4038 N. Milwaukee. Tickets cost $10 and can be purchased online.
Community Meeting Location Changed for Storage Facility/Mixed-Income, Veteran-Focused Housing Proposal
A public meeting to discuss a new mixed-income development at 5051 N. Northwest Highway will be held at 7 pm on Thursday, February 9, at The Branch Community Church, 6125 W. Foster. Previously, it was scheduled for the community room at the 16th District Police Station.
Last week I announced plans for a a new, green-rated, 100-unit mixed-income housing development at 5150 North Northwest Highway. The seven-story building will be developed by Full Circle Communities, with 80 percent of units accessible to people at 60 percent of less of the Area Median Income (AMI), and the other 20 percent at market rate.50% of the units will be reserved for veterans and those with disabilities.
Many residents have contacted my office with questions about this development. I have compiled a list of frequent questions and answers that can be accessed via my website. More information regarding this project will be unveiled at the community meeting; however, I would like to offer some answers to those questions ahead of the meeting.
Now more than ever, we must make sure those who serve our country come home to the safe, high quality housing they deserve, right here in Chicago. The already vibrant, thriving community of Jefferson Park is the perfect place to welcome them and their families home, in turn they will help to support our local economy.
While I understand how passions can run high when communities discuss zoning and density issues I have been surprised by the vitriol that has been directed at this proposal. This meeting is for the exchange of information between the developer and you, my constituent. As such, there will be a strict enforcement of rules of decorum and civility detailed here:
1. Only residents of the 45th ward will be admitted. Please bring a state issued photo ID. You will not be admitted without, no exceptions.
2. No banners, signs, or placards of any kind will be allowed in the church sanctuary.
3. Anyone that is vocally or otherwise disruptive to the free exchange of information will be asked to leave.
Agenda: There will be a presentation by the developers followed by a Q&A. Questions will be submitted at the meeting and collated to respect our time limitations.
There will be a comment period for those that wish to speak. Speakers will be asked to sign up and will be given 2 minutes (again, to respect our time limitation.) Comments can be directed at either or both of the structures being considered.
There is no legal or statutory mandate that requires me to hold local public meetings on every development. The Chicago Planning Commission and City Council Zoning Committee hold hearings on the storage facility on March 16th. Official hearings on the housing/retail development will be noticed should the project move forward.
In the past we have been able to have productive discussions and, in every case, improved or modified the original proposal based on thoughtful input from the community. This is an opportunity for us to show each other the respect that good neighbors do. Listen, be heard, collaborate. And then move forward together.
I look forward to a productive discussion on Thursday.
Plans Unveiled to Alleviate Overcrowding at Northwest Side Schools
On Wednesday night, alongside Mayor Emanuel and State Representative Martwick, I unveiled a $36 million plan to address school overcrowding on the Northwest Side.
The announcement included a $24 million plan to renovate Prussing School, 4650 N. Menard, and add a permanent eight-classroom annex to address the chronic overcrowding issue. This announcement was made in front of a diverse audience of parents and students, representing 36 countries and 27 languages. In a school where 63.5% of students qualify as low-income, I am very proud of this investment in their future.
The plan also includes a new pre-kindergarten center at the old St. Cornelius School, 5252 N. Long Avenue. Last year, St. Cornelius, along with other area Catholic schools, merged into the new St. Francis Academy, making it an ideal location for the pre-K center. The new center will open up space in the regions’ elementary schools, including Beaubien, Hitch, Prussing, and Farnsworth.
Finally, the announcement included plans for new turf fields at Schurz, Hitch, and Farnsworth schools. Turf fields have lower maintenance costs and save water, making this a fiscally responsible investment for these schools.
I am proud to usher in these changes to our schools and to continue to collaborate with the Mayor and CPS in developing comprehensive plans to address overcrowding on the Northwest Side.
Yolobe and Schurz to Host Informative Dinner Reception
In advance of a new pilot program, Yolobe, Schurz High School will host a dinner reception for businesses, non-profits, community organizations, professionals, parents, and others to learn more.
Yolobe is a professional social networking platform for young people 13-24 years old. Schurz High School is one of the first to pilot this innovate program, which will connect high school students with their community and provide them with the opportunity to gain valuable experience and skills.
The dinner reception will be from 6-7:30 PM on Thursday, February 9, in the library at Schurz High School, 3601 N. Milwaukee. Learn more about the event and register online.
CTA Seeks Artist for Montrose Blue Line Station
The Chicago Transit Authority is looking for an artist to create permanent public artwork fro the Montrose Blue Line station, which was recently renovated as part of the Your New Blueproject.
Now through March 3, the CTA is accepting qualifications from artists who have an interest in seeing their art enhance the public space at the Montrose Blue Line station. Local, national, and international artists are invited to apply. Prior public art experience is not a requirement.
Applicants are asked to submit their qualifications and portfolio for consideration per the instructions in the Request for Proposal (RFP) posted on the CTA’s website. Submissions must be delivered in person or by mail no later than 3:#0 PM Friday, March 2, to CTA Headquarters, 567 W. Lake St., 2nd Floor Bid Office, Chicago, IL, 60661.
Interested artists are invited to attend a pre-bid meeting on Monday, February 6 between 6 PM and 7:30 PM at the Mayfair Branch Library, 4400 W. Lawrence, where CTA personnel will provide additional program information and answer questions.
Members of the community will have an opportunity to meet the selected artist/artist team and provide their input before work begins on the proposed artwork renderings. Additional meeting details will be announced in the coming months.
Find more information about CTA’s public art program online.
Fannies Spread the Love Donation Campaign
Join Fannies Cafe, 5040 W. Montrose, for their Spread the Love Campaign.
Now through February 14, Fannies is collecting items for local homeless shelters and. Help reclaim old purses, bags, and book bags to fill with care packages to donate to Chicago’s homeless population. Fannies is looking to fill the care packages with hand/feet warmers, hygiene products, wet wipes, tissues, snacks, toothbrushes/toothpaste, first aid essentials, chapstick, cough drops, lotion, hats, gloves, mitten, scarves, and more.
Fannies will also collect various items for Chicago Canine Rescue to help animals in need. Chicago Canine Rescue is in need of bandages, grain-free dry adult and puppy food, paper towels, non-latex gloves, large garbage bags, one-gallon Ziploc bags, Kong toys, frozen chicken breasts (unseasoned), white rice, heartworm preventative, and flea and tick preventative.
For more information, call Fannie’s at 708-320-2294.
Become a Recreation Leader with the Chicago Park District
The Chicago Park District has open part time positions for recreation leaders. The part time position pays $12.82 per hour and is year round.
People interested in sports and working with children are encouraged to apply online. Use JobID 3008 in Community Recreation when applying.
Van Gogh Cafe Returns in March
The popular immersive theater experience, Van Gogh Cafe, returns this March.
10-year-old Clara knows that anything is possible after ligthning strikes and the food starts to cook itself. After a neighboring possum displays magical powers, she doesn’t question if magic will happen – but when. This family-friendly production is appropriate for people aged 8 and older.
In the fall of 2016, the event sold out at Community Tavern. This time around, the Filament Theatre will partner with Fannies Cafe, 5044 W. Montrose, to offer audiences this unique experience.
Performances will take place March 11 through March 26. Tickets are $45 for adults and $30 for children. The ticket price includes a prix fixe menu inspired by the story.
View the event online for scheduling information and to purchase your tickets.
Save the Date for Hands to Help’s Annual Trivia Night
Hands to Help Ministries is excited to announce they will be hosting their annual Trivia Night at 7 pm on Friday, April 28, at the Filament Theatre, 4041 N. Milwaukee. This community event and fundraiser will continue to support services and activities that break the cycle of homelessness in our community.
Hands to Help is offering early bird pricing for this fun-filled evening. Purchase an individual ticket now for $45 each or a table (seats 8) for $350. The event has a history of selling out, so buy your tickets now!
For more information, email Gayle email@example.com or call 773-599-0502.
Special Screening of On The Fringe
Have you always wondered what it was like to perform in a Fringe Festival? Or tour with a Fringe show? Or perform in Canada? Or none of the above?
Join the Chicago Fringe Festival for a special screening of On the Fringe – a documentary that chronicles the adventures of artists touring the Canadian Fringe Festival circuit.
Filmmakers traveled over 10,000 miles to bring you the stories behind the stories and the scenes behind the scenes.
The screening will take place at the Lincoln Loft, 3036 N. Lincoln, on Monday, February 6. Doors and the bar will open at 6 PM, the screening will be at 7 PM followed with a Q&A session with film producer Nancy Kenny and representatives from the Chicago and Elgin Fringe Festivals. Hang around afterwards to network and meet new people.
More information and tickets are available online.
Become a School Crossing Guard
The city is currently seeking part time school crossing guards.
Crossing guards are responsible for stopping and directing traffic to ensure the safety of school children and other pedestrians at designated intersections. They are also responsible for guiding and assisting children and other pedestrians safely across the intersection. Finally, they are responsible for reporting traffic violations to a supervisor by providing information on the vehicle’s license plate number, make, and model.
For more information on this position and to apply, visit the city’s CAREERS website.
Updated Disability Rights Regulations
The Chicago Commission on Human Relations (CCHR) Board of Commissioners approved updated disability rights regulations under the City’s Chicago Human Rights Ordinance (CHRO).
These newly revised regulations, effective July 1, 2017, are designed to improve citywide accessibility for all residents and visitors through added clarity to existing disability protections. These changes will, in turn, help businesses make their goods and services more accessible for people with all types of disabilities.
For technical assistance on this regulation and the corresponding requirements of the ADA, residents can contact the MOPD’s Accessibility Compliance Unit at 312-744-4441.
Read the CCHR’s press release regarding this update in full at the City of Chicago’s website.
Request for Qualifications Now Open for 50×50 Year of Public Art Project
2017 has been declared as the Year of Public Art. As such, the city is seeking artists for a 50×50 public arts project.
The 50×50 initiative was inspired by Chicago’s 50 wards and the 50th anniversary of two of the city’s most iconic public artworks – the Picasso in the Daley Plaza and the Wall of Respect, which once stood on the South Side.
Artists – including painters, photographers, and sculptors – interested in brightening and enhancing the city are invited to submit their qualifications for the project online before February 24.
More information on the Year of Public art -including a year of exhibitions, performances, tours, and other public events – can be found at the Department of Cultural Affair’s and Special Event’s website.
Chicago’s Free Tax Preparation Assistance Program Now Open
Eligible individuals and families with children could receive up to $6,896 from the federal and state Earned Income Tax Credit alone, not including other valuable credits. Many Chicagoans may not claim all the income tax credits they deserve without the help of knowledgeable preparers, however.
Families earning up to $55,000 or individuals earning up to $30,000 are eligible to take advantage of the city’s free and confidential income tax assistance at 19 sites across Chicago.
Volunteer tax preparers certified through IRS-approved training will assist eligible tax payers with federal and state income tax returns for the 2016 tax year. Sites will be open between late January and mid-April 2017. For specific information on location and site hours, visit the Tax Prep Chicago website. The closest site for 45th Ward residents is at Wilbur Wright College, 4300 N. Narragansett. Their hours are:
- Mondays from 5 pm to 8:30 pm January 30 thru April 17;
- Fridays from 10 am to 4 pm February 3 thru April 7; and
- Saturdays 9 am to noon January 28 thru April 8; finally
- This location will be closed on February 20, April 14, and April 15.
Last year, the City of Chicago’s free income tax assistance helped 20,000 families and individuals receive $31 million in tax refunds and credits. This added income not only has a direct impact on the lives of Chicago residents – it also helps sustain small businesses, strengthens neighborhoods, and infuses millions of dollars into the local economy.
For more information and to view additional locations, visit the Tax Prep Chicago website.
The Filament Theatre Presents: The Adventures of Robin Hood
Somewhere near you, there is a band of brothers fighting for justice – seeking to rid the land of evil and return hope to the mistreated.
It’s a tale that’s been told a thousand times, although never quite like this. There are heroes and villains, sword fights and explosions, love and loss. A cast of two breathes new life into the beloved tale of The Adventures of Robin Hood with exuberance, athleticism, and heart.
Shows run at 11 am and 3 pm on Saturdays and Sundays at the Filament Theatre, 4041 N. Milwaukee. Tickets cost $25 each and can be purchased online. Use the code ARENA15 for a 15% discount on tickets!
Thanks for reading,
Sun., Feb 5, 3-11 pm, Buckley Hall, 4451 N. Lowell. Support a local school duringSt. Edward’s Super Bowl Party. Free.
Tue., Feb 7, 6:30 pm,Six Corners Association, 4041 N. Milwaukee #301. Get involved to make a difference in your community by attending a Six Corners Association Committee Meeting. Promotions meets at 6:30 followed by design at 7:30. Free.
Tue., Feb 7, 7 pm,Independence Park Bungalow, 3945 N. Springfield. Join neighbors to learn how you can participate in supporting your community during the GIPNA Board Meeting. Free.
Wed., Feb 8, 3-4:30 pm, BACP City Hall, 121 N. LaSalle, Room 805. Learn the ins and outs of digital marketing during aHow to Use Your Website, Email, and Social Media to Double Your Business Fast workshop. Register: via email or call 312-744-2086.Free.
Wed., Feb 8, 7 pm,Athletic Park, 3546 W. Addison. Learn what you can do about crime during the 1732-1733 beat meeting. Find your beat at the 17th district beat map. More info: 312-742-4588.
Wed., Feb 8, 7 pm,Dunham Park, 4638 N. Melvina. Learn what you can do about crime during the 1622 Beat Meeting. Find your beat at the 16th district beat map. More info: 312-742-4521. Free.
Thur., Feb 9, 12-1:30 pm, Cook County Elder Justice Center, 50 W. Washington, 20th Floor, Courtroom 2005. The Circuit Court of Cook County ELder Justice Center hosts a two-part Reverse Mortgages and Predatory Lending seminar. This is the first part. More info and register: 312-603-9233. Free.
Fri., Feb 10, 9:30-11 am, BACP City Hall, 121 N. LaSalle, Room 805. Hema Khorshid from Fuksa Khorshid, LLC hosts aNavigating a Commercial Real Estate Transaction workshop. Register: via email or call 312-744-2086. Free.
Sat., Feb 11, 2-3 pm,Portage-Cragin Library, Community Room, 5108 W. Belmont. Build literacy skills and engage the senses with books, song, and play duringSensory Story Time. Limit to 12 children. Register at the branch. Free.
Sat., Feb 11, 6 pm, St. John’s Episcopal Church, 3857 N. Kostner. Celebrate Darwin’s birthday with Science and Faith: A Bishop/Biologis Embraces Both. This will be a moderated discussion with retired Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori. Free.
Sun., Feb 12, 5-7 pm,Irving Park Lutheran Church Gym, 4057 N. Harding. Thaw out with Carlson’s Soup & Bread. Take a break from winter hibernatio with a steaming bowl of soup from great restaurants and cooks served among friends and neighbors — all for the good of neighborhood programs. More info: email Liz or call 773-398-6766.$15/adults; $10/seniors and teens; $5/kids 3-12; free/kids 3 and under.
Mon., Feb 13, 7 pm, Irving Park Baptist Church Basement, 4401 W. Irving Park. Learn how you can become more involved with the community by attending the monthly Old Irving Park Associationmeeting. Free.
Wed., Feb 15, 3-4:30 pm, BACP City Hall, 121 N. LaSalle, Room 805. Anthony Bertuca goes through the application process during a How to obtain a Sidewalk Cafe Permit. Register: via email or call 312-744-2086. Free.
Wed., Feb 15, 7:30 pm, 17th District Community Room, 4650 N. Pulaski.Learn what you can do about crime during the 1722-1723 Beat Meeting. Find your beat at the17th district beat map. More info: 312-742-4588. Free.
Thur., Feb 16, 7-9 pm, Smokey’s BBQ, 5481 N. Northwest Highway. Meet neighbors and get involved in the community during the Jefferson Park Forward monthly meeting. Guest speaker: Merry Ellen from the Historic Chicago Bungalow Association. Agenda and more info:online. Cost of purchases at Smokey’s.
Fri., Feb 17, 9:30-11 am, BACP City Hall, 121 N. LaSalle, Room 805. Sandra Cavato Insurance Agency hosts a Everything You Need to Know About Business Insurance. Register: via email or call 312-744-2086. Free.
Sat., Feb 18, 2-4 pm, Portage-Cragin Library, Community Room, 5108 W. Belmont. Do you and your family need to get out of the house? Join the library for Family Play Time. For families with kids 3 and older. Sign up at the branch. Free.
Mon., Feb 20, 7:30-9 pm, TBA, Meet neighbors and discuss ways to become more involved in your community during the Portage Park Neighborhood Association monthly meeting. More info:online. Free.
Wed., Feb 22, 3-4:30 pm, BACP City Hall, 121 N. LaSalle, Room 805. Charles Krugel, a Human Resource attorney, hosts a Hiring the Best Employees and Managing Employee Behavior. Register: via email or call 312-744-2086. Free.
Wed., Feb 22, 7 pm, Congregational Church of Jefferson Park, Basement Auditorium, 5320 W.Giddings. Meet neighbors and dsicuss how to improve your community during the Jefferson Park Neighborhood Association monthly meeting. Free.
Wed., Feb 22, 7 pm,Portage park Senior Center, 4100 N. Long.Learn what you can do about crime during the 1624 Beat Meeting. Find you beat at the 16th district beat meeting. More info: 312-742-4521. Free.
Thur., Feb 23, 10-11 am, Archdiocese of Chicago Food Service, 5343 W. Roscoe. The Illinois State Board of Education in partnership with the Archdiocese of Chicago host aSummer Food Service Programinformation session. RSVP: 800-545-7892.Free.
Thur., Feb 23, 12-1:30 pm, Cook County Elder Justice Center, 50 W. Washington, 20th Floor, Courtroom 2005. Attorney Lynette Lewis and Community Outreach Specialist Theresa Chandler host aSeniors’ Guide to Property Tax Savings seminar. RSVP: 312-603-9233.Free.
Thur., Feb 23, 7 pm, Krueger Hall at St. Bartholomew, 4910 W. Addison.Learn what you can do about crime during the 1634 Beat Meeting. Find your beat at the 16th district beat map. More info: 312-742-4521.
Fri., Feb 24, 9:30-11 am, BACP City Hall, 121 N. LaSalle, Room 805. Eric Sternberg of the Center for Economic Progress & Yolanda Ruiz of the Internal Revenue Service host a Tax Issues for Self-Employed Individuals and Businesses workshop. Register: via email or call 312-744-2086. Free.
Sun., Feb 26, 10 am-4 pm, Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum, 2430 N. Cannon. There are so many ways to give back to your community in 2017. Save the date to find one that’s right for you at the 5th Annual Chicago Volunteer Expo. Whether your passion is the environment, the arts, or social justice, there’s a volunteer opportunity waiting for you. Free and open to all.
Mon., Feb 27, 5:30-8:30 pm, The TapRoom at Lagunitas Brewing Co, 2607 W. 17th St.UpBeat Music and Arts, a Chicago not-for-profit that mentors students ages 5-17 through music and art, is hosting an UpBeat on Tap fundraiser. Proceeds benefit UpBeat to provide programming and scholarships. Ticket price include tasty BBQ from Smoke Daddy. 21+. Tickets: online. $20/advance and $25 at the door.
Tues., Feb 28, 7 pm, Rosedale Park, 6312 W. Rosedale.Join neighbors to learn how you can participate in supporting your community during the Gladstone Park Neighborhood Association meeting. Free.