Wednesday, April 1, 2015

46th Ward Candidates Face Off On Chicago Tonight

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Here's a link if the video above won't work for you.

Just In! Video Of Saturday's Aldermanic Debate


If you're still undecided about who to vote for in Tuesday's aldermanic run-off, here's something that might help you make a decision:  video of the Crawford/Cappleman debate last Saturday.  Thanks to the League of Women Voters and CAN-TV for making this available to voters and residents.

"Love Is A Four Letter Word" On Racine

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Last night the 20th Century Fox production Love Is A Four-Letter Word filmed on the 4600 block of Racine, near Leland, after filming near Foster and Marine earlier in the day.  Reader Steve Kay posted this shot on Uptown Update's Facebook page and said the action got going around 9pm.  You can read more about it here.

Final Two 46th Ward Candidate Debates Televised Tonight and Friday

After a year and a half of campaigning, its hard to believe (and a bit of a relief) to know that we're in the final week.  Tuesday night we'll have a winner -- and at least a few years off from local campaigning.

If you're still on the fence about who to vote for, you'll have two more chances to see Ald. Cappleman and Amy Crawford go head to head discussing the issues.

  • Tonight they will meet on WTTW's Chicago Tonight.  It airs at 7pm, with repeats at midnight and 5am.  There's more about the show and the 46th Ward here.  The debate will probably be linked to the website after it airs.
  • On Friday, they'll be on CLTV's Politics Tonight at 6:30pm, repeating at 9:30pm.  The debate will probably be linked to the website after it airs.
  • Buena Park Neighbors will be holding viewing parties for the live debates on Wednesday and Friday at Buena Beach Bar & Grill, at Imperial Towers (4250 North Marine).  The doors open at 6pm.  There will be light refreshments, as well as food and drink specials.

Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Get Your Mad Men On At Fat Cat

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Watch the final season of Mad Men at Fat Cat beginning this Sunday, April 5th.  Dress like Peggy, Don,  Betty, Pete or (if you can handle it) Joan.  Enjoy a Pink Squirrel or a Tom Collins to put you in the proper state of mind.  More details are here.  Fat Cat is located at 4840 North Broadway, at Gunnison.

42 Grams' Chef Named One Of The Best In The Country

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Alexa Welsh and Jake Bickelhaupt
Food & Wine magazine today revealed its coveted list of Best New Chefs Across America. Eleven made the cut, and the only Chicagoan -- the only Illinoisan -- on the list is right here in Uptown: Jake Bickelhaupt of 42 grams.

When Uptown Update visited 42 grams before its January 2014 opening, Jake and his wife Alexa told us that they had been holding "underground dinners" in their apartment, but were nervous about the landlord finding out, so when Chester's Chicken at 4662 North Broadway closed, they decided to take Jake's talents public and open in the suddenly available storefront.  We (and Uptown's tax base) are grateful that they did!

Congratulations to an Uptown couple who decided to take a chance and invest in our community. We are so happy to see their dream and talent being recognized!

Join Ald. Cappleman & Your Neighbors For 46th Ward Night Out

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"The Little House On Winthrop" Site To Be Empty No More

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Some readers may remember the post from 2009 about "the little house on Winthrop," an 1899 A-frame home that was falling apart and was used as an emergency shelter for immigrant women and children experiencing domestic abuse. The house was charming and historic, but too far gone to be saved, so it was torn down in 2010, leaving an empty lot on the 4700 block of Winthrop.

Apparently the agency that owned the home has been successful in fundraising, because neighbors recently received notices informing them that a zoning variation is being requested for a home that will be built on the site. Because the previous building was zoned as an emergency shelter, no zoning change is needed.

Given the poor management of a couple Uptown shelters in the past, some wariness on the part of neighbors might be expected, but in this case we don't think it's warranted. We spoke to two long-time neighbors of the home and some police officers, and they all said the same thing: the shelter has always been a good neighbor.  No one remembered any incidents involving the house, its residents, or visitors.  As one officer told us, "If you didn't know it was a shelter, you'd never know it was a shelter."

The new home won't be a quaint, historic A-frame.  There probably won't be blog posts written about it.  But we're glad to know that there will soon be a safe haven for women in crisis, and we're really happy to have one less empty lot sitting on a residential street.

Below is the zoning variance request notice received by neighbors of the property.  We've blacked out the exact address because ... domestic violence shelter, you know?

Baskin Robbins Celebrates Today With $1.31 Pricing

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Baskin-Robbins is celebrating its 70th anniversary, and it's offering lower prices on some of its treats today and several other days during the year.

Scoops of ice cream are $1.31 apiece and two-scoop sundaes are $3.31.  The celebration takes place on the 31st day of the month: January, March, May, July, August, October, and December.

You can read more about it here.  The locations in and around Uptown that are participating are located at:
  • Broadway and Wilson
  • Broadway near Foster
  • Lawrence at Hermitage
  • Montrose and Clark.

Monday, March 30, 2015

Street Sweeping Begins In April, Get Reminders About When Your Street Will Be Cleaned

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Boy, the streets really need some TLC after an ugly winter.  Luckily, monthly street cleaning will begin throughout the city on April 1st.

For an easy way to find out when your streets will be swept, and to get reminders if you'd like them, go to and enter your address.  It will tell you the next time you'll need to move your car, and you can sign up for text, email and/or calendar reminders for the season.

Come to Driftwood For A Fundraiser and Fun on Friday May 8th

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Rick Heintz, a bartender at Driftwood, is celebrating his birthday this year by throwing a fundraiser to help LGBTQ youth in our neighboring state of Indiana, where he grew up.  Please plan to attend and help Rick celebrate!

Update:  Please note that the new date is Friday, May 8th.

Elderly Woman Reported Missing Near Uptown (Update: Located!)

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Good news:  The police just sent a press release that she has been located.

Original story:
Please keep an eye out for Gloria Atherton, age 86, who was reported missing from her daughter's home in Ravenswood this morning (4700 block of Paulina).  Ms. Atherton is 4'11" and weighs 117 lbs.  She was recently released from the hospital and suffers from dementia and schizophrenia.  She was wearing a black v-neck sweater, black stretch pants with an orange waistband, and hospital socks.

If you see her, please call 9-1-1 or the CPD Area North Special Victims Unit at 312-744-8261.

Calling All Artists & Musicians!

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On Saturday, August 1, 2015 from 9am-3pm, the 3rd Annual Sunnyside Mall Art and Music Festival will commence. Each artist will have an 8’x8’ spot along the north and south sides of Sunnyside Mall (Sunnyside Ave. -  4500 N) between Magnolia and Beacon Avenues in Uptown. The music will be located at the east end of the mall. There are 5 one-hour time slots available for live music performances. All work must be handmade by the vendor and each artist should bring their own tables, chairs, easels or any other equipment needed – electricity is limited.  Cost is $20.00 per 8’x8’ spot.  All proceeds will be invested in the rehabilitation of the Sunnyside Mall.  The cost is not tax deductible and will be collected the day of the event.

If you are a local artist or musician and are interested, please email us at

BPN General Meeting Tonight

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Buena Park Neighbors Association General Meeting is Monday, March 30, at 7pm at The Shift, 4101 N. Broadway

Alderman Cappleman will attend the General Meeting, where residents gather to learn news about Buena Park, hear about upcoming events, recap recent accomplishments and hear from local officials and leaders. Buena Park Neighbors has obtained a limited number of Cubs tickets, and they will be available to residents who attend the meeting.

Buena Park Neighbors is a 46th Ward neighborhood association of more than 200 residents, businesses and not-for-profit organizations and a nationally registered Buena Park Historic District. Its mission is to improve the quality of life for everyone in Buena Park.

Sunday, March 29, 2015

Ho, Ho, Ho, It's Magic!

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Lots of magic at the Uptown Underground!
The Chicago Magic Lounge, a new weekly happening at the Uptown Underground, has successfully established itself Chicago's new home for a lost Chicago tradition: close-up magic.

Step back in time to Chicago’s old-school magic bars, and become immersed in a night full of close-up magic, bar magic, table-hopping magicians, and main stage acts of the highest caliber. The Chicago Magic Lounge aims to bring you the city's best magic every Thursday night. Teaming up with the Uptown Underground, the Lounge is dedicated to revitalizing an important Chicago tradition. Close-up magic just got a lot closer.

Chicago has a rich history of magic performed in front of your eyes in bars. Magic bars were all the rage during the 1960's and 70's and that live magical entertainment was just a short ride away for many Chicagoans. There was the well-known New York Magic Lounge in Lincoln Square, the famous Schulien's in North Center, and South Side club Little Bit O' Magic. People flocked to the magic bars to share the laughter and awe generated from the miracles of Chicagoan magicians. They were all places to see magic happen up-close and personal, providing an exciting and unforgettable experience. They pioneered what is now known as the "Chicago Style" of magic: magic right at your table. 

Chicago Magic Lounge performers include headliner Jim Bergstrom along with magicians John Sturk, Lee Benzaquin, Luis Carreon, Kex Lang, Mike Rhodes, and Bill Weimer, the man who literally wrote the book on Chicago magic bars: Now You See Them, Now You Don’t.

The 8:00pm show includes close-up, strolling, and bar magic, with showcase acts on the stage throughout the night. At 10:00pm show is the Magic Lab - a chance for magic performers to test out material and work on new effects for their professional or amateur acts.

The goal of the Chicago Magic Lounge is to provide an unforgettable experience that will leave the audience wondering not only how the magicians do it, but what will happen next.

Chicago Magic Lounge
Every Thursday Night at 8:00pm.

Uptown Underground, 4707 N Broadway (just south of Lawrence Ave), Chicago, IL 60640.

$20 tickets and more information are available at 773.867.1946 or

Saturday, March 28, 2015

Chipotle Is Hiring, Opening Date Still Unannounced (Updated)

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Last report we had, the new Chipotle coming to 5224 North Broadway, at Foster, was tentatively scheduled to open on Sunday, March 29.

We haven't heard anything different, but the Chipotle website just says "Coming Soon."  Your guess is as good as ours.  It looks turnkey ready, but there's been no announcement about a Grand Opening.

They are looking for staff, particularly "New Restaurant Opening Crew."  Click here to see the job descriptions in Spanish and English.

Update:  As of Monday, March 30th, it's open.

Aldermanic Forums? Yes, Indeed! Live and Televised

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If you're still on the fence about who to vote for in the 46th Ward aldermanic run-off, or if you just want to root for your candidate, there are several 46th Ward forums before Tuesday, April 7th.
  • On Saturday, March 28, at 2pm, the League of Women Voters Chicago is sponsoring a forum between Ald. James Cappleman and challenger Amy Crawford at Preston Bradley Center, 941 West Lawrence (aka the People's Church).
  • On Wednesday, April 1, there will be the first of two televised debates between the two candidates, and Buena Park Neighbors will be holding viewing parties for them both at Buena Beach Bar & Grill, in the Imperial Towers building at 4250 North Marine.  There will be light refreshments, and food and drink specials.  The televised debate will be on WTTW's Chicago Tonight program, from 7pm-8pm (doors open at 6pm).
  • On Friday, April 3, Buena Beach Bar & Grill will once again open its doors at 6pm for a viewing party.  This time the debate will be on CLTV's Politics Tonight, from 6:30pm-7pm.
UU Note:  The East Lakeview Neighbors live debate originally scheduled at Temple Sholom has been cancelled, and the original times for the televised debates have been corrected.  Please note the correct information above.  We apologize for the earlier, inaccurate information.

Friday, March 27, 2015

TV Pilot Shooting Next Week Near Entertainment District


Thanks to a sharp-eyed reader who spotted this sign with parking restrictions for the area around Uptown Square.  Looks like they will need to use the parking spaces on various streets, but the street closure itself will be on the 4600 block of Racine.

Twentieth Century Fox is currently filming two pilots in Chicago, so we don't know which this is.  Could be Runner, starring Adam Rodriguez and Paula Patton.  Could be Love Is A Four Letter Word, starring Nadine Velazquez and Rockmond Dunbar.  Guess we'll find out on Monday.

If you can't see the image above, here are the restrictions cited:
  • Broadway from Racine to Leland, West Side only
    (no parking Monday, March 30, 7am until Wednesday, April 1, 5pm)
  • Broadway from Leland to Clifton, East Side only
    (no parking Monday, March 30, 6pm until Wednesday, April 1, 1am)
  • Leland from Racine to Broadway, both sides of the street
    (no parking Monday, March 30, 6pm until Wednesday, April 1, 1am)
  • Racine from Wilson to Broadway, both sides of the street
    (no parking Monday, March 30, 6pm until Wednesday, April 1, 1am)
  • Racine from Wilson to Leland
    (street closed Tuesday, March 31 from 6pm to 11:59pm)

Learn About Block Clubs, Court Advocates, and 311/911 Calls

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Thursday, March 26, 2015

Mapping The Votes In The 46th Ward

click to enlarge
Aldertrack, the news service that keeps an eagle eye on Chicago's political scene, mapped (literally) the 18 wards that are having aldermanic runoffs.  From an email sent Wednesday:
"With the help of Northwestern University Assistant Professor Tom Ogorzalek, we've mapped out each of the aldermanic runoff wards votes by precinct from the February 24 general election. You can download the maps for free here.
As with yesterday's data, the maps work like a heat map, where you can see the runoff candidates' strongest turnouts, and also their weakest turnouts where their first round challengers were stronger. You can immediately see where each candidate's base exists and where they have more work to do."
If you're interested in subscribing to Aldertrack, the info on how to do so is here.

Clarendon Park Egg Hunt

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On Saturday, April 4th, Clarendon Park will hold an egg hunt for kids between the ages 3-8.  It's free, but bring a basket for your treasures!  The Bunny will be there, and it all happens between 11am and noon.  Clarendon Park Fieldhouse is located at 4501 North Clarendon, at Sunnyside.

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Cappleman Aldermanic Office Defaced Overnight

A reader sent in photos she took of the 46th Ward aldermanic office (4544 North Broadway), the front windows of which got covered in graffiti sometime overnight.  Apparently the vandal doesn't like gangs, drugs, "Capelman," "Emanual" or proper spelling.  (Really, Ace, the name you're going for is spelled properly just a few inches away!) Presumably they also didn't notice all the security cameras aimed right at the McJunkin Building, either.  Klassy.

This Sunday At Chase Park, The Ever-Popular EGGStravaganza

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Have You Voted Yet? Your Neighbors Have

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So, a freak snowstorm on the first day of early voting, and say what? The numbers are UP for the first two days?

More than 21,000 Chicagoans have taken advantage of early voting so far - more than any other early voting opening since it started.

In the 46th Ward (two offices to vote for), 393 of you early-voted (that's 1.37% of the registered voters in the ward).  In the 47th (one office), 453 did (1.36% of the registered voters). In the 48th (one office), 378 did (1.27% of the registered voters).

Will you be a decision maker, or will you be someone who stands by and watches while others make choices that affect you? Early voting is open every day through April 4th.  Details are here.

Aldertrack's chart of the first two days of early voting is here.

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Story Club North Side Announces April Line-Up

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As it does every month, Story Club will take place at the Holiday Club on the first Thursday, April 2nd. for an evening of fun and entertainment with witty raconteurs.  April's theme will be "When It Rains...."

"The rain makes people do funny things. On Thursday, April 2nd, Story Club North Side is tackling stories of little things that balloon into big things because when it pours. Featuring these talented performers:
  • Bill Drew
  • Zach Zimmerman
  • Rose Lannin 
As always, there are three open mic slots available.  Open mic participants are given 8 minutes (1300 words) and they may tell a story on the theme or not. Open mic sign-up starts at 7:30pm and co-hosts Dana Norris and Erin Kahoa will start the show at 8pm. If more than three storytellers sign up, we’ll draw names for the slots."

The Holiday Club is located at 4000 N Sheridan, at the corner of Irving Park.  For more information about Story Club, visit its website:

Sunday, March 22, 2015

Q & A With The 46th Ward Candidates

We've been asked by readers to provide more substantive coverage of the 46th Ward's candidates in the run-off election.  A few days ago, we approached the campaigns of both Amy Crawford and James Cappleman to ask if they would be willing to answer five questions about themselves, how they view the ward, and how they foresee its future. Below are their answers, just as they provided them to us. We thank both James and Amy for taking the time during this busy campaign season to answer our questionnaire.

You can click on each page image below for a larger, easier-to-read version.

Amy Crawford
UU Note: Here are clickable hyperlinks referenced by Amy in her responses: and

James Cappleman

Early Voting Begins Tomorrow in Mayoral/Aldermanic Runoffs

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So we should all be really good at early voting by now, since we just did it last month, right?

Starting tomorrow (March 23rd), and running through Saturday, April 4th, early voting for the April 7th municipal election will be open all over the city.  No matter where you live, you can vote at any polling place you choose.  All polling places are open 9am-5pm Monday through Saturday, and Sunday 9am-3pm.

Why early vote?  
  • Three words: Shortest. Ballot. Ever.  Everyone in the city will have the opportunity to vote for Mayor.  In the 46th Ward (and 17 other wards around the city), voters will have the opportunity to choose an alderman.  That's it. At most, two decisions to make.
  • It's where your voice is the loudest. Traditionally, the runoff election has a lower voter turnout than the general election.  Every vote counts.
  • You get to choose when and where you vote. There's one polling place per ward, as well as one at the Board of Elections at 69 West Washington.  You can early vote at any of them. You're not tied down to a single polling place, like you are on Election Day.  The entire list is here.
  • Better voting equipment. By law, on Election Day, each precinct must have one electronic voting station. Guess where all those easy-to-use electronic voting machines hang out before Election Day?  At the early voting locations.
  • No Election Day surprises, like, say, a blizzard.  A monsoon.  Cubs traffic.
  • It will stop most of the campaign phone calls.  Most campaigns get daily lists of the early voters. They're interested in reaching potential voters, not people who have already voted. A few phone calls may slip through, but most of them will stop once you've voted.
A few things to remember about early voting:
  • You'll need to bring and show a government-issued photo ID (unlike Election Day, when your matching signature is your ID).
  • Early voting locations in and around Uptown: Truman College, 1145 West Wilson (46th Ward), Welles Park, 2333 West Sunnyside (47th Ward), and Edgewater Public Library, 6000 North Broadway (48th Ward).  But it bears repeating -- you can vote at any early voting location, anywhere in the city, regardless of where you live.
  • Want to see a sample ballot?  Go here, plug in your personal information, and it will show you a sample ballot for your precinct.
So, choose a day you've got some free time, get out there to a polling place, and do your civic duty, you sexy ballot-casting voter, you.

Saturday, March 21, 2015

Treasure Hunt! Rummage Sale This Afternoon

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Today at the Preston Bradley Center, Noon through 4pm.  "Nice furniture, clothes, office equipment - tables, chairs, drums, futon & frame, couch, steel drums, theatrical fabric, 32" television, baseball hats (a hundred!), tchochkes, Fiestaware dishes (20-some pieces) - in short, Rummage Extraordinaire!"

Preston Bradley Center is located at 941 West Lawrence, at Sheridan.

Tokyo Marina's Last Days, 4 Story Development Coming Soon

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Demolition underway at Clark & Carmen
Our friends at Foursided (Clark and Carmen) sent in this pic that shows neighboring sushi restaurant Tokyo Marina in its final days.
Rendering of 5058 N. Clark
According to Ald. Pawar's office, this corner will be redeveloped into a 4 story development with 6 units marketed as luxury rentals. It had initially been reported that these would be condos, but again, according to Ald. Pawar's office, they will be rentals.

Friday, March 20, 2015

Need to Wash the Winter Off Your Vehicle?

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Help the Uplift Titans raise money for equipment and uniforms!  And get your car sparkling clean at the same time.  Friends of the 46th Ward Schools posts, "Spring is here!  Uplift Community High School is holding a car wash fundraiser over the next few weeks to raise money for Uplift student athletes.  Stop by the school (900 W. Wilson, enter on Eastwood) Monday through Friday from 4:00 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. or on Saturdays from 9:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. and have your car washed. Washes are $10 per vehicle."