Wednesday, December 13, 2017

Seasonal Specials From Spoil Me Salon & Spa

Spoil Me Salon & Spa is located at 4668 N Broadway, at the corner of Leland. 

Click images to enlarge.

Tuesday, December 12, 2017

BPN Seeks Block Captains to Help Community Awareness

Buena Park Neighbors block club is rolling out its new block captain program and is eagerly anticipating expanding. 15 block captains have signed up so far. Interested in being part of it and connecting with your neighbors? This is what the program is about:
"The Block Captain Program brings together a diverse group of community leaders to advance the mission of Buena Park Neighbors, which is to improve the quality of life for everyone in Buena Park.

The purpose of the Block Captain Program is three-fold:
  • Public Awareness: The Block Captain Program raises public awareness about Buena Park Neighbors and the Buena Park neighborhood, as well as issues in the community.
  • Community Projects: The Block Captain Program provides a mechanism for putting into action new community projects, as well as bolstering existing community projects, to make a concrete impact on Buena Park.
  • Leadership Pathways: The Block Captain Program provides pathways to leadership within Buena Park Neighbors, allowing community members to take on increased responsibilities and to learn more about additional opportunities for leadership within the organization."
Write to get more information on this new program.

Monday, December 11, 2017

Kal'ish Voted Chicago's Most Popular Vegan/Vegetarian Restaurant

Congratulations to Kal'ish Vegan (1313 W Wilson) for being named Most Popular Vegan/Vegetarian Restaurant in Chicago for 2017 by ChicagoVeg.

Not bad for a restaurant that just celebrated its first anniversary last month!

Congratulations to Gina and Andy Kalish for making their vision come true.

Truman/Sunnyside Pass-Through Closed While More Lighting Is Installed

We've been hearing from readers that the Truman pass-through to the Sunnyside entrance of the Wilson L (that's a mouthful) has been closed after it opened last week. Our contact at the project management company says today:
"The CTA is in the process of adding more lighting to the Truman/Sunnyside path to increase safety and security. The pathway will be closed until this work is complete. Hopefully in a few weeks."
Sorry for all who have been using it, but just a couple weeks delay for a safer passage.

Saturday, December 9, 2017

What A Difference A Year Makes

It was on December 23 of last year that North Side Housing and Supportive Services, the men's shelter in the Preston Bradley Center, announced happy tidings. Literally days before it was scheduled to close forever because of funding issues, a private donor (the Reva and David Logan Foundation) came up with enough money to keep the shelter running for several more years.

WBEZ has done a story about what a difference a year has made in the looks of the shelter, the services it is able to perform, and the lives of its clients. You can read it here: Uptown Homeless Shelter Looks Back At Year That Almost Wasn't.

A reminder that North Side Housing will have an open house this Thursday, December 14th.

Checking In! New Hotel For Uptown In The Planning Stages?

There was an interesting paragraph in the article that Crain's ran about Uptown's future:
In 2019 the city will start a five-year project to rebuild the nearby Lawrence, Argyle, Berwyn and Bryn Mawr Red Line stations and adjacent support structures so they'll feature what riders now see at Wilson—wider platforms, better lighting—plus a new track and new bridges and viaducts. 
That we knew. But this made us do a double-take:
Next to the Lawrence stop, steps from the Uptown, the city is studying the potential for an upscale hotel, says Deputy Planning Commissioner Eleanor Gorski.
Stay tuned! We look forward to learning more about this.

Tantalizingly Close (But No Cigar) - 2015 Plan To Revive Uptown Theater Scuttled

click to enlarge
What's up with the Uptown Theater?

That's the eternal question. Most people who have been inside it want it to be revived. Others question whether it will ever happen. City planners see it as a crown jewel that will attract people from all over to Uptown.

But right now, it sits.

Crain's did an article this week that reveals that a plan was in place to revive the beautiful shuttered building in 2015... but claims it was scuttled when Mayor Emanuel replaced the staff of Chicago Infrastructure Trust, the agency that had spearheaded the plan.

It's very sad to read for those of us who want to see the theater become relevant again. The plan would have transformed the massive building "into a multipurpose entertainment complex offering concerts, movies, dining and more. With tenants identified and a financing model in place, it was the closest the Uptown, once one of the largest movie palaces in the world, had ever come to a genuine resurrection."

It's a long article and difficult to summarize, so we highly recommend reading it yourself if you're interested in the future of this theater. It's here: A deal to save Uptown Theatre was all set. Until it wasn't.

For those who will say, "Tear it down!" -- it's landmarked as part of the Uptown Square District, so that won't happen.

In a comment, Ald. Cappleman says, "All the discussion I have had with the Mayor's Office, the Dept. of Planning & Development, and the current owner is on restoring this building. People rightfully ask for a timeline, but because there have been too many false promises made, nothing will be said until everything is in place to make this happen. 

This is a heavy lift but I'm committed to making this a reality. Anyone who has ever been inside it quickly understands why it must be restored."

If you've never been inside, we recommend the 2006 film short, Uptown: Portrait of a Palace, free on Vimeo.

Friday, December 8, 2017

Feed A Family For The Holidays

If you've got some extra cash and would like to help a local family celebrate the holidays, Jewel-Osco is partnering with two Uptown charities to make that happen.
  • If you shop at Jewel at Montrose and Sheridan, you can support a family in need through the food pantry at St. Mary of the Lake.
  • If you shop at the Broadway and Berwyn store, you can make a donation that goes to a family through the food pantry at St. Thomas of Canterbury.
$50 will buy a meal for a family of six. Thanks to all who are able to contribute.

Andersonville Late Nights Begin This Evening

Tonight is the first of three Andersonville Late Nights, when more than 60 businesses (on both the Uptown and Edgewater sides) will stay open late for holiday shoppers. Here's a list of the stores and their promotions. Additional nights are December 15th and 22nd.

You can take the Andersonville Holiday Trolley there. It runs 5pm-9pm and makes a continuous loop along the Clark Street District. It has a wheelchair lift, and is free. The stops are:
  • Lawrence & Clark
  • Carmen & Clark
  • Swedish American Museum (5211 N Clark)
  • Balmoral & Clark
  • Bryn Mawr & Clark
  • Gethsemane Garden Center (5739 N Clark)

Chain Link Fence Along Montrose Is But A Memory

New brick wall surrounding the CTA substation under the tracks on Montose
Same area back in 2009 (Google)
Montrose has gotten a bit of love from the Wilson L renovation that is now winding down. You might recall the chain link fence and the remains of the old concrete track structure that greeted pedestrians along Montrose. The track remnants were thankfully removed a while back and now a red brick wall with beige accents has been completed to hide the CTA electrical components and workshops. A gate to the area is still not completed. It is a definite improvement over what was there, that's for sure.

GWNA Block Club Holiday Party December 11

Graceland Wilson Neighborhood Association is ringing in the holidays at Uptown's hottest new retail spot, Provisions Uptown! Meet your neighbors, nosh on delicious appetizers and check out the amazing selection of gifts for your loved ones. The fun starts at 5:30PM on December 11 and runs till 8:30PM.

Wednesday, December 6, 2017

Just Passing Through....

... between Truman College and the Sunnyside L entrance, that is! Yes, commuters, the pathway is now open to access the auxiliary entrance from the east and west. Enjoy.

One Arrest Made, CPD & Federal Investigation Ongoing In Sheridan Road Burglary

Some good news in the case of the alleged Sheridan Road burglars who may have entered the building by using a Post Office-issued master key. (Our original post is here.)

Images of two men entering and leaving the building were caught on high-def security footage, and screen grabs were distributed around the neighborhood and online. One such image appears at the right.

One of the people whose home was burgled got this notice Tuesday:
"A juvenile offender was arrested and charged with the burglary to your unit. 

An adult offender has been identified and we are investigating him to build a more solid case in order to charge him with burglary as well. 

CPD is working with the US Postal Inspectors (the federal law enforcement arm of the USPS) in this ongoing investigation.

Stay tuned."
We can't think of a better rationale for having on-site security cameras. We're sure the clear images it captured were hugely instrumental in identifying the alleged thieves. We'll update if and when we learn more.