Through September 24, Erasing the Distance will host their inaugural SPARKfest at the Filament Theatre, 4041 N. Milwaukee.
Erasing the Distance (EDT) is a theater collective that works to raise public awareness and destigmatize around mental illness. They creates scripts using real interviews with people living with mental illness.
SPARKfest will feature exhibits, panels, and workshops that expand upon the themes performers address in the productions.
For more information and to purchase a ticket, visit Erasing the Distance’s webpage.
Open House Chicago to Visit the Far Northwest Side
For the second year in a row, the Chicago Architecture Foundation will make its way to the far Northwest Side during their 7th annual Open House Tour.
On October 14 & 15, the free tour will feature six historically significant buildings in the Portage Park neighborhoods.
Make sure to clear your calendar for the following behind-the-scenes look into Chicago’s historical spaces:
- From 10:00 am to 4:00 pm on October 14 &15 at Fort Knox Studios/2112, 4245 N. Knox;
- From 9:00 am to 5:00 pm October 14 and from 10:00 am to 4:00 pm October 15 at Lake Effect Brewing Company, 4727 W. Montrose, Suite C;
- From 10:00 am to 5:00 pm on October 14 at the Muslim Community Center (Rivoli Theater), 4380 N. Elston;
- From 9:00 am to 4:00 pm October 14 and from 12:00 pm to 4:00 pm October 15 at Our Lady of Victory Roman Catholic Church, 5212 W. Agatite;
- From 9:00 am to 5:00 pm on October 14 & 15 at the Portage Lofts Art Center, 4141 N. Milwaukee; and
- From 9:00 am to 2:00 pm October 14 and from 9:00 am to 4:00 pm October 15 at the Portage Theater, 4050 N. Milwaukee.
For more information on tour sites and times or volunteer opportunities, visit the Chicago Architecture Foundation’swebsite.
Community Meeting for Independence Tap October 3
I am hosting a community meeting Wednesday, Oct. 4, at 6:30 pm, to discuss a proposal for an outdoor patio license and a public place of amusement license for Independence
Tap, 3932 W. Irving Park Road. The meeting will be in the Independence Park Fieldhouse, 3945 N. Springfield.
The owner of Independence Tap would like to allow outdoor seating in the rear patio, add a kitchen to the bar, and have the ability to charge admission for live music during a limited number of nights per week. In working with the West Walker Civic Association and Greater Independence Park Neighborhood Association, Ald. Arena has requested that the owner abide by special rules requiring the patio to close at 10 pm, and that number of ticketed events per week be limited.
Please join us 6:30 pm Wednesday, Oct. 4, at the Independence Park Fieldhouse, 3945 W. Springfield, to learn more about this proposal.
Community Alert: Armed Robberies
The 16th District issued a community alert this week of recent armed robberies that occurred in the month of September. The incidents occurred at:
- The 4400-block of North Mango at 1:05 am September 16; and
- The 4100-block of North Long at 1:15 am September 16.
During the incidents, the unknown robbers approached the victim, displayed a handgun and a knife, and demanded the victim’s property.
One offender is described as a male white white Hispanics, between the ages of 16 and 20. He weighed 160-180 pounds and 5’08”-5’10”. He was wearing a red, white, and black hoodie with dark pants. The second offender is described as a black male between 16 and 20 years old. He was 5’08”-5’09” with dreadlocks.
If you are confronted by an assailant, remain calm. Call 911 immediately and provide a detailed description of the offender(s), including any vehicle description and license plate information.
If you have any information, contact the Area North Bureau of Detectives at 312-744-8263.
Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program Enrollment Opens October 2
The priority enrollment period for seniors (60+) and persons living with disabilities to receive winter energy bill assistance through the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) begins October 2.
LIHEAP is a state and federally funded energy assistance program for low income families. The LIHEAP program offsets the cost of home energy through direct financial assistance as well as energy counseling and education. For LIHEAP eligible households, a bill payment will be made directly to the utility company(s) on behalf of the household.
Cook County residents must bring all required documentation when applying for assistance, including:
- Proof of gross income from all household members, 18 years or older, for the 30-days prior to the LIHEAP application, including the application date itself.
- Current heating and electric bills, issued within 45 days of applying for LIHEAP assistance.
- If the utilities are included in the rent, a copy of the rental agreement is required as proof.
- Proof of Social Security numbers for all household members. The proof provided must be an original government issued document.
- If applicable, proof that the household receives Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF), Aid to the Aged, Blind, or Disabled (AABD), or other government benefits.
LIHEAP benefits are paid directly to energy vendors on behalf of eligible households. The exception is households whose heating costs are included in their rent and whose rent is more than 30% of the total household income. A signed lease or rent verification form will be required as proof.
Families with children ages 5 and under at the time of application can begin applying for LIHEAP assistance as of November 1. Households not eligible for priority enrollment can apply for LIHEAP assistance beginning December 1
For more information on LIHEAP eligibility or to find an intake center, visit the CEDA website or call 800-571-CEDA.
Donate Your Used Coats to Help Someone in Need
The Irving Park Community Food Pantry will be collecting winter coats of all sizes to distribute to clients in October. The are especially in need of men’s winter coats.
Coats can be dropped off at the Pantry, 3801 N. Keeler, during operating hours (Wednesday 9 am to noon and on October 10 from 6 pm to 7:30 pm). Additional drop off locations include Disney II Magnet Elementary school (3815 N. Kedvale), Old Irving Brewing (4419 W. Montrose); and the Linnemyer front porch at 3822 N. Tripp.
Filament Theatre Tenth Anniversary Benefit
Celebrate ten years of exceptional theater at the Filament during their Tenth Anniversary Benefit. The event will take place on Saturday, October 7, at 7:30 pm at the Filament Theatre, 4041 N. Milwaukee.
The celebration will feature food form your favorite Six Corners restaurants with throwback performances from your favorite productions including The Monster in the Hall, The Snow Queen, The Van Gogh Cafe, and more. Guests will also be among the first to learn about Filament’s exciting 2018 season!
In addition to the delicious selection of food and delightful entertainment, the evening will include auction items ranging from Chicago Bears tickets to a tea party at Fannies Cafe.
Tickets begin at $50 for individuals or $250 for a reserved table. Find more information and reserve your ticket todayonline.
Jefferson Park Blue Line Renovation Contract Awarded
Last week, the Chicago Transit Board approved a design and build contract with Walsh Construction Company II, LLC., for the $25 million rehabilitation and upgrade to the Jefferson Park CTA station.
Final designs are not complete, but construction will include newly redesigned canopies for the bus terminal and rail station entryway, and an improved reconfiguration of the bus bays to accommodate those with disabilities and improve pedestrian flow through and around the transit center. Other work includes the installation of public art, rehabbing the train platform canopies, repairing and repainting the exterior station walls, new benches, new windbreaks, and new trash bins along the platform.
Work is expected to begin early next year and be completed in 2019. I look forward to this overdue face lift to the Jefferson Park terminal and the positive impact that it will have on the ongoing revitalization efforts of Jefferson Park.
Central Avenue Transformation
Work began last week to transform Central Avenue to improve safety for all users.
The changes include bump-outs at Central & Giddings, Central & Leland, and Central & Ainslie. A designated bike lane will be installed from Goodman to Gunnison, and a shared lane from Lawrence to Montrose. Finally, right-turn-only lanes will be installed on Central on both sides of Lawrence.
While Central and Giddings was initially selected to receive bump-outs during the 2015 Participatory Budgeting cycle, my office took the break from participatory budgeting in 2017 to work closely with the Department of Transportation to come up with a more comprehensive plan to calm traffic and improve pedestrian safety along this stretch of Central.
This section of Central Avenue is frequently used as a cut-through to the Kennedy Expressway with motorists often speeding and failing to yield to pedestrians – as state law requires – despite clear crosswalk markings and signage. Last November, a two-year-old boy passed away and a 39-year-old woman sustained injuries after they were struck by a vehicle that ignored a stop sign on Giddings Avenue. The woman and the boy were crossing Central Avenue when they were struck.
As a government official, a part of my duties include looking at how we can be more thoughtful in designing our streets and implementing infrastructure to ensure that they are safer for all users, including cyclists and pedestrians. But all of the tools we have at our disposal will not be effective unless motorists also adjust their behavior and practice more caution. Minding stop signs, reducing our speed, and staying focused on driving by actively looking for pedestrians and cyclists will continue to have the biggest effect on safety in our streets.
Work is anticipated to be completed by October 1.
Municipal ID Program
Beginning this December, Chicagoans will be able to use a new municipal identification card to ride the CTA and check out books from the Chicago Public Library.
The new program, spearheaded by City Clerk Anna Valencia, will allow people who might not otherwise be able to obtain a government-issued identification card to still access city services and other businesses. The new ID program will help marginalized Chicagoans access a form of ID accepted by all City departments regardless of immigration status, housing status, criminal record, or gender identification.
The program was first approved in April 2016 by City Council. I applaud Valencia for her efforts in seeing this to fruition and continuing to create a welcoming city for all Chicagoans.
More information about the municipal ID program is available at the City of Chicago website.
Apply to Become a Police Officer
Are you looking to have a meaningful impact on your community? Becoming a police officer provides more than a great source of income, it also provides a great source of pride.
Now through October 16, the Chicago Police Department is accepting applications for those interested in making a lasting difference in their community. The Chicago Police Department offers a competitive salary and benefits.
Interested applicants must be 20 years old by December 31, 2017. If you’re interested, fill out a quick application at theChicago Police Department’s website by October 16. The test to become a police officer will be held on the weekend of December 16, 2017.
Sheet Metal Apprenticeships
Sheet Metal Workers Local Union 73 is now accepting apprenticeships for those interesting in sheet metal trade as a career.
Through October 4, interested persons ages 17 and older can apply for an apprenticeship where they will learn the skills necessary for a long-term career in the sheet metal trade. For requirements and more information regarding the application process, visit the Sheet Metal Workers’ website.
Thanks for reading,
Sat., Sept 23, 10:30 am-2:30 pm, 1300 W. Jackson.Celebrate the Chicago Police Department’s service to the Chicago community during an Open House. Meet and greet your local police staff with reps from CPD’s Special Weapons and Tactics team, Canine team, and other specialized units as they showcase their equipment and provide demonstrations. Learn about police officer opportunities while you’re there. More info: online. Free.
Sun., Sept 24, 9 am-1 pm,Independence Park, 3945 N. Springfield.The 13th year of the Michelin Guide-recommendedIndependence Park Farmers Marketcontinues twice a month through October. Join neighbors for great produce from farms and other vendors. Music and more at each market. Credit cards and LINK cards accepted. More info: online.Free to attend, cost of purchases apply.
Sun., Sept 24, 9:30 am-1:30 pm,Jefferson Memorial Park, 4822 N. Long.Support your favorite vendors and purchase locally grown food at the Jefferson Park Sunday Market. The market runs through October and offers a great selection. More info: online.Free to attend, cost of purchases apply.
Sun., Sept 24, 3 pm,St. John’s Episcopal Church, 3857 N. Kostner. St. John’s presents an afternoon of chamber music withThe Chen Family and Mio Nakamura.Free.
Mon., Sept 25, 7:30 pm, Portage Park Senior Center, 4100 N. Long. Do you have thoughts on how to improve Portage Park? Attend a Friends of Portage Park meeting to share your thoughts. More info: 773-720-5381. Free.
Tue., Sept 26, 9 am-3 pm, O’Hare Terminal 2, Baggage Claim Area. Speak directly to hiring managers at the Chicago O’Hare International Airport during aConcessions Career Fair. Bring your resume. On-site interviews. Free.
Tue., Sept 26, 7 pm,Rosedale Park, 6312 W. Rosedale. Meet neighbors and get involved in the community during the Gladstone Park Neighborhood Associationmonthly meeting.Free.
Wed., Sept 27, 4-7 pm, Potbelly, 4185 W. Irving Park.Satiate your appetite while giving back to a local school, Gray School, during thePotbelly Sandwich Shop Gives Back fundraiser. 25% of net sales will be donated to the school. Cost of purchases.
Wed., Sept 27, 5-6:45 pm, The Kedzie Center, 4141 N. Kedzie, Suite 2. Join Community Mental Health for aCommunity Night on Suicide Awareness & Prevention panel discussion. Free.
Wed., Sept 27, 7 pm, Basement Auditorium of the Congregational Church, 5320 W. Giddings. Meet neighbors and discuss how to improve your community during the Jefferson Park Neighborhood Associationmonthly meeting. Guest speak Joe Cavataio, R&D scientist and herpetologist, will speak on snakes in the city, with emphasis on their adaptation to urban life. Free.
Wed., Sept 27, 7-8 pm, Irving Park Y, 4251 W. Irving Park. Teens ages 12-18 are invited to play games and learn about what the Y Leaders program is all about during theTeen Leaders Club meeting. Snacks provided. Free.
Thur., Sept 28, 1113 Berwyn Gallery, 1113 W. Berwyn.Local artist Nicholas Conlon showcases his work in a pop-up art show titledAll My Work for Nothing. More info:online.
Fri., Sept 29, 1113 Berwyn Gallery, 1113 W. Berwyn. Local artist Nicholas Conlon showcases his work in a pop-up art show titled All My Work for Nothing. More info: online.
Sun., Oct 1, 2 pm,Irving Park Lutheran Church, 4100 N. Harding. The Irving Park Fine Arts Committee presents Jim Konsbruck and Tom Clippert Guitar Duo. Reception with artists follows concert. Free admissions, donations accepted.
Wed., Oct 4, 10 am-1 pm, 6332 N. Northwest Hwy,While you’re grabbing your morning cup of joe, chat with your friendly neighborhood cop during the 16th District’s Coffee With a Cop. Free.
Fri., Oct 6, 8 pm, St. John’s Episcopal Church, 3857 N. Kostner. St. John’s hosts Bernstein at 100: Songs of Love and Longing to celebrate the 100th anniversary of Leonard Bernstein’s birthday. Free childcare available. Reception following performance. Tickets: online, at the parish office, or at the door.$30/adults; $10/children. Includes one beverage.
Sat., Oct 7, 10:30 am-2:30 pm, 1300 W. Jackson. Celebrate the Chicago Police Department’s service to the Chicago community during an Open House. Meet and greet your local police staff with reps from CPD’s Special Weapons and Tactics team, Canine team, and other specialized units as they showcase their equipment and provide demonstrations. Learn about police officer opportunities while you’re there. More info: online. Free.
Sat., Oct 7, 7 pm,Independence Tap, 3932 W. Irving Park.Enjoy the music ofStann Champion. Blues, jazz, roots genres. No Cover Charge.
Thur., Oct 12, 12-1:30 pm, Cook County Elder Justice Center, 50 W. Washington, Courtroom 2005.The senior enrichment seminar series hosts anEverything You Should Know about Guardianshipseminar. RSVP: 312-603-9233. Free.
Thur., Oct 12, 12-1:30 pm, Cook County Elder Justice Center, 50 W. Washington, Courtroom 3005.The senior enrichment seminar series hosts anEverything You Should Know About Guardianship
Fri., Oct 13, 7-9 pm,Dunham Park Main Gym, 4638 N. Melvina. Dunham Park hosts Fall Skate Party. Bring your own skates, roller blades, helmets, pads, and protective gear. Some free skate rentals will be available, but sizes and quantities are limited. For children five years and up. Children under 17 must be accompanied by an adult. Register:online. $5 before Oct. 6; $8 until 4 pm Oct. 13.
Fri., Oct 13, 7-10 pm, St. Viator Recreation Center, 2nd Floor, 3644 N. Kedvale. Get in the Halloween spirit during St. Viator’sStairway to Insanity Haunted House. Intended for mature audiences.$10.
Sat., Oct 14, 7 pm,St. John’s, 4939 W. Montrose. Exercise your brain during St. John Lutheran’sTrivia Night. Cash prize for first place. More info: email organizers or 773-736-1196.$17/person; $170/table of 10.
Sat., Oct 14, 7-10 pm, St. Viator Recreation Center, 2nd Floor, 3644 N. Kedvale. Get in the Halloween spirit during St. Viator’s Stairway to Insanity Haunted House. Intended for mature audiences. $10.
Tue., Oct 17, 7 pm,Latvian Community Center, 4146 N. Elston. Meet neighbors and get involved in the community during the West Walker Civic Association general meeting.Free.
Thur., Oct 19, 5-8 pm, Irish American Heritage Center, Erin Room, 4626 N. Knox. Minton-Regan Properties is hosting a Seniors in Transition event. An abundance of resources will be available to educate and enhance the life of seniors and their children. Appetizers and drinks served. Free.
Fri., Oct 20, 7-10 pm, St. Viator Recreation Center, 2nd Floor, 3644 N.Kedvale. Get in the Halloween spirit during St. Viator’s Stairway to Insanity Haunted House. Intended for mature audiences. $10.
Sat., Oct 21, 7-10 pm, St. Viator Recreation Center, 2nd Floor, 3644 N. Kedvale. Get in the Halloween spirit during St. Viator’s Stairway to Insanity Haunted House. Intended for mature audiences. $10.
Fri., Oct 27, 7-10 pm, St. Viator Recreation Center, 2nd Floor, 3644 N. Kedvale. Get in the Halloween spirit during St. Viator’s Stairway to Insanity Haunted House. Intended for mature audiences. $10.
Sat., Oct 28, 4-6 pm, Belding Elementary, 4257 N. Tripp. Join in on the fun during theBelding Fall Fun Fair. DJ, costume party, prizes, and a bouncy house obstacle course.Donations Accepted.
Sat., Oct 28, 7-10 pm, St. Viator Recreation Center, 2nd Floor, 3644 N. Kedvale. Get in the Halloween spirit during St. Viator’s Stairway to Insanity Haunted House. Intended for mature audiences. $10.