Category Archives: Evanston

Supermoon over Evanston

The largest supermoon in nearly 70 years lit the cloudless sky over Evanston Monday night, November 14, 2016. The world is being treated to supermoons in 3 successive months this fall, but the November supermoon tops them all.

Due to the elliptical orbit of the moon around the earth, its distance from our planet varies. A full moon is characterized as a “supermoon” when its orbit brings it closer to the earth and it therefore appears at least 14% larger than a typical moon and 30% brighter. Tonight’s moon is about 30,000 miles closer to the earth than usual. The moon’s orbit has not brought it this close to earth since 1948 and it won’t be this close again until November 24, 2034.

Benedictine Sisters of Chicago march to reclaim their neighborhood

My daughter Mary Grace spent four years walking from Howard Street two blocks south on Ridge Avenue to St. Scholastica Academy, her high school. Although nearby areas in south Evanston and further east in Rogers Park certainly had some problems with crime, we never had any concerns with the short walk in the area dominated by the monastery of the Benedictine Sisters of Chicago and the all girls Catholic high school founded and run by that order.

That peaceful neighborhood was rocked two weeks ago when 18-year-old Antonio Johnson, of Evanston, was chased down, shot and killed in front of the St. Scholastica monastery.

The sisters, who have been in Rogers Park since 1906, and socially active on a number of issues, conducted a silent prayer walk and a blessing with holy water at the site of the shooting. They were joined by community members on Wednesday to retrace Johnson’s final steps.

“We reclaim this space for non-violence,” said Sister Benita Coffey. “We’re still women of peace, living community life here and wanting desperately for this neighborhood to become a place of peace.”

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GetCovered Illinois logo

Learn about the Affordable Care Act and upcoming health care transition

This Sunday, October 13, come to the Levy Senior Center in Evanston to hear our federal and state officials discuss the new health care law. You can also learn about the enrollment process with in-person counselors.

Starting in October, you can enroll in health care coverage through Illinois’ expansion of Medicaid or the Federal Health Insurance Marketplace. If you have questions about the Affordable Care Act or want to learn more, you can meet individually with an in-person counselor from noon to 5:00 PM Sunday at the Levy Senior Center.

At 3:00 PM you can join a panel discussion on the Affordable Care Act and upcoming health care transition with Congresswoman Jan Schakowsky, State Senator Daniel Biss and State Representatives Robyn Gabel and Laura Fine.

No appointments are necessary. For more information, contact Senator Biss’s office at 847-568-1250 or

The Levy Center is located at 300 Dodge Avenue in Evanston (Google map).

Evanston Lighthouse Beach

Does Evanston Need a Lakefront Protection Ordinance?

On Wednesday evening, October 2, the Democratic Party of Evanston (DPOE) will host a panel discussion on the topic: “Should Evanston pass an ordinance to protect our lakefront?” A public discussion of the issue will follow the panel discussion.

The panel will include Ald. Coleen Burrus (9th Ward), University of Illinois at Chicago Prof. Martin Jaffe (to provide an academic perspective), Peter Marks (a local property owner) and Eric Singer (local business owner). It will be moderated by Cameron Davis.

The event will begin at 6:30 PM in the Skylight event space in the Heartwood Center, 1818 Dempster (just east of Dempster and Dodge). Free street parking is available on both Dempster and Dodge.

Food and Music Paired in Chicago this Weekend

For anyone looking for something to do in Chicago this weekend, there are lots of things on their plate (literally!). This weekend’s offerings are centered around a combination of food and music.

Taste of Chicago

The Taste of Chicago started on Wednesday July 10 and runs through Sunday, July 14 in Grant Park. Admission is free and food tickets may be purchased at the site.

TOCbrochurecoverAlongside Taste of Chicago’s classic favorites, such as Lou Malnati’s Pizzeria, Billy Goat Inn and Eli’s Cheesecake, the 2013 event welcomes several newcomers, including Bombay Spice Grill & Wine, featuring healthful Indian fare; French Market favorite Flip Crepes; Lao Ma La Chinese by acclaimed Chef Tony Hu; and the decadent, Southern-inspired Wishbone Restaurant. Additionally, after taking part in last year’s crowd-pleasing pop-up pavilion, both Beat Kitchen and Caffe Gelato return in 2013 as five-day participants.

As for music, the lineup at Petrillo Music Shell Concerts includes the Rock ‘n Roll legend Robert Plant and Grammy Award winner Jill Scott and more. Concert seating is sold out but lawn seating around the pavilion is free.

The Bud Light Stage at Taste of Chicago features 30 bands for a dynamic showcase of local talent, from up-and-coming to established Chicago artists.

For a complete schedule and more information, click here.

Windy City Smokeout

Only a few short blocks from the Taste of Chicago, visitors can enjoy BBQ, beer and country music at the first annual Windy City Smokeout. Located in the River North area at Illinois Street and Rush Street, the Windy City Smokeout runs from July 11 to 14.

Bastille Day

For the Francophiles in the city, this weekend also marks Le quatorze juillet, also known as La Fete Nationale in France and Bastille Day most other places. Bastille Day commemorates the July 14, 1789, storming of the Bastille, a French fortress famed for holding political prisoners. The day is honored with a fest at Daley Plaza. In addition, Chicago Tribune restaurant critic Phil Vettel lists area restaurants that offer special deals throughout the weekend.

Musically, on Sunday, July 14 at 2 PM, at SPACE in Evanston Martha Carés and Robert Swan will bring the audience back in time to the era of WWII France through the inimitable music of Edith Piaf. Piaf (“the little sparrow”) captured France in the forties and America in the fifties with her compelling renditions of some of the most moving and nostalgic songs ever written.

So bring your appetite and listening ears and enjoy the midsummer weekend in Chicago.