Today, the lions standing guard outside the Art Institute of Chicago joined the Chicago CubsWorld Series fever by donning their Cubs caps. At noon, when I walked over to take this photo, crowds were gathered taking photos of both lions from various angles. Some visitors were posing in front of the statues while others (like me) were content to give the lions all the attention. Behind the lion, you can also see that the Art Institute is also flying a large W flag in its center window.
Not to be left out, Symphony Center, home of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, located across Michigan Avenue from the Art Institute, shared in the celebrating the Cubs with a large banner covering the window directly above its main entrance. The banner features a depiction of a portion of the ivy covered outfield wall at Wrigley Field. As I reported in my last post, the CSO joined in Cubs fever by performing “Take Me Out to the Ball Game” with a full orchestra under the direction of maestro Ricardo Muti.
Both of these institutions have been around for well over a century, so they were able to see the last World Series pennant won by the Cubs and have waited with the rest of us for more than one hundred years to see another.
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.”
More than 3 dozen downtown Evanston businesses are participating in a fun giveaway. Come to the Hilton Orrington plaza (intersection of Orrington and Church) at 12:30 pm on Saturday, February 13, for a chance to catch a heart-shaped parachute with a surprise gift from a local business. According to DowntownEvanston.org:
You might walk away with Giordano’s “golden tickets” (dinner for two), a coupon for jewelry at Ayla’s Originals, free classes to Pure Barre and Exhale Evanston, tickets to the movies, a gift certificate for a bouquet at FlowersFlowers, coupons to Becky and Me Toys, or a gift card to enjoy a delicious meal at Found, Bistro Bordeaux, Creperie Saint Germain and much, much more. One lucky person will catch a free night at the Hilton Orrington!
Afterward, shop and dine in downtown Evanston to help raise money for Foundation 65, an organization that provides arts and literacy grants to District 65 schools. Check out the Valentine’s specials listed below. Please note that businesses with an asterisk on the DowntownEvanston.org website are donating a portion of sales on February 13 and/or 14 to Foundation 65.