Judge Rules Obama Presidential Center Groundbreaking Can Go Forward
“A federal judge ruled that the Obama Presidential Center groundbreaking can begin in Jackson Park, denying a preliminary injunction in the lawsuit against the project,” reports the Hyde Park Herald. “The plaintiffs — the nonprofit group Protect Our Parks, as well as several local residents — said they plan to appeal the decision, which was issued in a brief note on August 5. ‘After considering the parties’ briefs and oral argument, this Court finds that Plaintiffs have not met the standard for injunctive relief on their federal claims, and accordingly denies their motion for preliminary injunction,’ wrote district court Judge John Robert Blakey.”
Blair Kamin Offers Peek at The Tribune Tower Residences
Blair Kamin posts photos on Twitter from “Tribune Tower Residences.” “The lobby, Col. McCormick’s fireplace (now on 3rd floor), new landscape carved into the back of the Tribune complex, and an apartment looking out on the landscape. I suggest they add some cigarette butts to give the place some grit… The old editorial board room, without paneling and plaster ceiling; view from apartment balcony along Michigan Avenue; kitchen in unit high up in Tower; and (I am not making this up) the putting green in the golf simulation area.”
DINING & DRINKING
Amazon’s Whole Foods Adding $9.95 Delivery Charge
Amazon will tack on a $9.95 fee for delivery to Prime members who shop at Whole Foods in Chicago, reports Bloomberg, “an indication that the economics of grocery delivery continue to pose a challenge for even the world’s largest online retailer.” The notice sent to some shoppers says that the “service fee helps to cover operating costs, so we can continue to offer the same competitive everyday prices in-store and online at Whole Foods Market.” Grocery pickup does not have an added charge at this time.
Lyra Opens In Fall In Fulton Market
“Greek restaurant Lyra, set to open this fall in Fulton Market, wants to encapsulate the ethos of the islands and the people that live there,” reports Crain’s of the 8,000-square-foot space to come. “It’s the wine, it’s the family and it’s true whole food.” The design, posts the restaurant group, “will utilize rustic, earth-toned elements of rural Greek landscapes and integrate them into Fulton Market’s contemporary setting. The menu will embody Greek wellness ideologies… The concept was initially inspired by DineAmic Hospitality partners, David Rekhson and Lucas Stoioff’s recent trip to Greece, where they acquired a newfound appreciation for the natural Greek lifestyle… The focal point of the 8,000-square-foot space will be a large open-kitchen with a wood- and coal-burning hearth, perched high above the dining room. The elevated cooking stage will be the heart of the concept, allowing the culinary team to showcase the restaurant’s cuisine.”
Elise De Los Santos Latest Tribune Good-Bye
Chicago Tribune content editor Elise De Los Santos takes to Twitter with her farewell. “It’s tough to leave the newsroom you dreamed of joining since your first day of journalism school, but the time is right for me to take on new challenges. It’s been an honor and a privilege to be trusted to edit the work of the Tribune’s journalists, from Pulitzer Prize winners and finalists to interns working on their first story (we all were you once). I’m proud of all the catches I helped make, the commas I added and took away, the corrections that didn’t need to be filed because a copy editor read a story. The copy desk remains an essential part of this (and any!) newsroom. The thing I will miss most is working side by side with my copy desk comrades deep in the copy trenches as deadline closes in… I love this newspaper and love its journalists, and will remain a reader and a superfan of the many continuing to fight the good fight… Speaking of fighting the good fight, the Chicago Tribune Guild has done so much to protect the journalists of this institution and the journalism they produce, and it will keep doing so. I’m proud to have served as a steward and on the exec board. Every night, I send out a note to the newsroom saying, “Good night from the copy desk.” So, for the last time, I say good night, good luck and see you at the Goat.
Memorializing Dave Matthews’ 2004 Contribution To Chicago River
A Twitter wag posts, “17 years ago today Dave Matthews Band dumped 800 pounds of poo onto a tour boat on the Chicago River,” along with a picture of a brown cardboard sign magic-markered in all-caps: “In August, 2004, At This Very Location, A DMB Tour Bus Dumped 800 Pounds of Poo on Some People.” Adds Reader music writer, Leor Galil, “The twentieth-anniversary stories are going to be huge.”
Outdoor Transmission Concerns Rise
“Outdoor events remain far safer than indoor ones, experts agree,” reports Rolling Stone in an extended survey. “Even in the most crowded outdoor areas, aerosols can’t build up the way they do indoors, which vastly reduces the risk of a single contagious person spreading [the virus] to many people. Still, according to aerosol scientist Alex Huffman, an associate professor of chemistry and biochemistry at the University of Denver, some of the benefits of being in open air diminish when thousands of people are crammed cheek-to-cheek, especially with the more transmissible Delta variant spreading widely. ‘If you’re outside and you’re packed in with someone,’ says Huffman, ‘It’s getting closer to being like an indoor environment, where you have really high aerosol exposure from the person that’s a foot from you, or even inches from you.'”
A Week After Lolla, Live Nation Gives Artists Option For Vaccination Mandate
In a companywide email to employees, reports Rolling Stone, Live Nation CEO Michael Rapino said that “all Live Nation employees will be required to be vaccinated… an issue of concern among artists, crews and the venues themselves… ‘We are working to ensure we are reopening in the best way possible for staff, artists, crew, fans, and communities at large. Our teams have worked together to put new processes in place so that artists doing shows with Live Nation in the U.S. can require all attendees and staff to be fully vaccinated or show a negative test result for entry, where permitted by law.”
Surveying Chicago Venue Vaccination Requirements
Many music venues have instituted vaccination policies over the past week, filling “social media platforms with announcements outlining the documents that will be required to gain entry to performances on local stages,” reports Time Out. “Some venues are requiring that attendees be fully vaccinated, providing their original vaccine card, a photocopy of the card or a digital photo. Others are also accepting a negative COVID-19 test (performed within 72 hours of entering the venue) from attendees who have not been vaccinated. Nearly all venues with vaccination requirements in place are matching the names on vaccination cards and negative COVID-19 tests to a government photo ID—a step that Lollapalooza notably didn’t take when the festival welcomed [hundreds of thousands of] attendees to Grant Park last weekend.”
Times Timelines R. Kelly Accusations Before Today’s Opening Of Trial In New York City
“For two and a half decades, the singer who performs as R. Kelly has faced allegations of sexually abusing minors, often luring them in through music — and the promise to help launch their own music careers,” reports the New York Times in a timeline feature on R. Kelly’s alleged crimes. “In 2017, and then again in 2019, public scrutiny grew following the #MuteRKelly campaign, a series of protests and boycotts of his music, and the release of ‘Surviving R. Kelly,’ a documentary including testimony from several women accusing the singer of abuse. But the 54-year-old performer has settled the civil complaints against him and was acquitted in a high-profile criminal case brought against him on child pornography charges in 2008…. A second criminal trial starts Monday, in federal court in Brooklyn, where Mr. Kelly is charged with racketeering based on sexual exploitation of children, kidnapping, forced labor and Mann Act violations.”
Rembrandt Chamber Musicians Announces Season, Artistic Director
“Rembrandt Chamber Musicians, Chicago’s premier ensemble for classical chamber music and adventurous new works, has appointed longtime core ensemble member, violinist John Macfarlane to lead Rembrandt forward,” the group reports in a release, “an exciting collection of programs in which history and art intersect. Planning its return to the concert hall in Evanston on October 10 and in Chicago on October 11, Rembrandt embarks on a yearlong musical journey, beginning with the world premiere of’ American composer Stacy Garrop’s ‘Chiaroscuro,’ written as a commission for Rembrandt’s thirtieth anniversary. After its debut in Rembrandt’s previous season was delayed due to the pandemic, it is fitting that the piece is to have its world premiere at Sandra and Robert Morgan’s final performance with the ensemble they founded.” More here.
Collaboraction Launches “The Light”
“Collaboraction, an ethno-diverse social justice organization that uses theater and performance to incite social change in Chicago, launches The Light, a radical new program dedicated to recruiting, mentoring, introducing and inspiring exceptional Chicago youth artists and activists over the course of a full year,” the group announces in a release. “The Light is Collaboraction’s debut of its youth education program, focused on outstanding youth artists and change-makers of exceptional message, skill and craft who are eager to be immersed in a deep artistic and scholarly mentorship as part of a year-long, paid creation and performance mentorship program.” Details here.
ARTS & CULTURE
Lightfoot Extends Proposal Deadline Two Months For Chicago Casino
“Lightfoot is extending the deadline for bidders to submit proposals for a Chicago casino, a move that comes as the city struggles to generate interest…” The new deadline is October 29, reports the Tribune. Lightfoot said in a statement: “Extending the deadline for interested bidders will allow the City to collect as many… proposals as possible… I look forward to seeing these bids roll in and working very closely with whichever team is ultimately chosen to develop Chicago’s first-ever casino.” “Some big casino operators, like MGM, have announced they would not bid. Local companies Related Midwest and Rush Street Gaming have expressed interest in a potential casino, which could raise politically uncomfortable questions if they’re chosen due to Lightfoot’s long friendship with Rush Street Gaming Chairman Neil Bluhm’s daughter, Leslie, who has given more than $100,000 to Lightfoot’s political funds.”
Barstool Sports Bringing Gambling Bars To Chicago?; City Prepares Sports Gambling Rules
“Philadelphia and Chicago are getting Barstool Sports-branded sports bars,” Fox Business reports, “according to the Pennsylvania-based… company that owns a minority stake in the company. The announcement came as Penn National Gaming, the Wyomissing-based casino operator that bought a 36% stake in Barstool last year, was delivering its second-quarter 2021 earnings report earlier this week. ‘We are making progress on the build out of stand-alone Barstool-branded sports bars, with the initial locations in Philadelphia and Chicago scheduled to open later this year,’ PNG president and CEO Jay Snowden told investors.” A pending City of Chicago sports wagering ordinance sets out what sites are allowed and what licenses cost here.
Lips Show Palace Celebrates Two Years In Chicago With Grand Reopening
“Lips, the ultimate in drag dining, announces they will celebrate two years on Chicago’s iconic Motor Row with reimagined performances, a new show night and a dynamic new cast to deliver its one-of-a-kind glitz and glamour,” they announce in a release. “Beginning Wednesday, August 11, Lips will kick off its weekly ‘Bitchy Bingo’ show with new show host, Chicago’s Batty Davis, followed by a packed weekend of show-stopping performances from nationally recognized drag talent and Chicago drag legends Mimi Marks, Mz. Ruff N’ Stuff and Shavonna B. Brooks… Lips brings a dynamic combination of fresh and familiar made-up faces to deliver a unique, reimagined experience. ‘After nearly eighteen tumultuous months, we are back and better than ever! We’re thrilled to celebrate two years in Chicago with exciting additions to the show and cast, plus our brand-new Bitchy Bingo night on Wednesdays,’ Yvonne Lamé, Lips founder says. ‘At Lips locations across the country, we’re seeing audiences champing at the bit to get back out and celebrate in record-breaking numbers, and we can’t wait to bring this renewed party to Chicago. Guests may think they’ve seen everything at Lips, but that was just the beginning.’” Details here.
Pinball Expo Turns Thirty-Seven
The longest-running event of its kind in the world, Pinball Expo, celebrates its thirty-seventh anniversary October 27-30. Organizers report that this will be the largest gathering in Pinball Expo’s history when the doors open at the Schaumburg Convention Center Hotel. “Located in the northwest suburbs of Chicago, the new venue will provide more than 60,000 square feet of exhibit space for the pinball extravaganza, nearly tripling the amount of space of recent years. The Pinball Expo lovefest started as a dream for Rob Berk, the show’s founder. As a young boy he was mesmerized by the pinball machine in the basement of his family home. These memories motivated Berk to begin buying his own machines after graduating from college and start a personal collection. Today that collection has grown to over 1200 machines, encompassing the full and ever evolving history of pinball.” Details here.
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