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Vacant Little Village Fire Station Going To National Museum Of Mexican Art
“A key city panel endorsed a measure that would sell a vacant Little Village fire station to the National Museum of Mexican Art for $1, to be used to expand Yollocalli Arts Reach, which offers free programs for teens and young adults,” reports Heather Cherone at WTTW. “The fire station at 2538 South Whipple was in use for more than a century but has been vacant since 2011, when a new fire station was built two blocks away. The Chicago Historic Resources Survey determined the two-story structure is significant in the context of the surrounding community. The old fire station, which an appraisal found to be worth $29,000, is set to be transformed into a gallery, gathering space and community center. The museum will restore the architecturally significant portions of the building, including its spiral staircase, and seek landmark designation from the city, according to the redevelopment proposal.”
Museums Reckon With Their Colonial Heritage
“As Canada reckons with its colonial history, a push to ‘decolonize’ museums has rocked its National Gallery and other museums,” reports Norimitsu Onishi at the New York Times. “Museums across the West are having an identity crisis, wrestling with their roles in society and their colonial heritage. But as Canada has begun reckoning intensely in recent years with the ugly chapters of its history with Indigenous people, its museums have pushed further than most in transforming themselves—scrapping galleries, rethinking their exhibitions, refashioning the stories they tell and who has the power to tell them,” eliciting “criticism that culture is being politicized, and it has turned several museums into flashpoints.”
“The tensions could have been confined to the rarefied world of museums if they had not reached the country’s most prominent one: the National Gallery, nearly as old as Canada itself, whose identity and national narrative it has helped shape.” Says the National Gallery’s director, “To a certain extent, all museums are colonial constructions, and some people have argued that true decolonization would require shutting down every single museum because they’re born out of a colonial approach to the other.”
Fine Arts Building Celebrates 125th Anniversary On Friday
Chicago’s historic Fine Arts Building at 410 South Michigan marks its 125th anniversary with a major public celebration on Friday, October 13, 5pm-9pm that will incorporate all ten floors of the Chicago landmark, an artist’s haven since its founding in October 1898. The event will feature dozens of arts organizations, including Chicago Human Rhythm Project, Chicago International Puppet Theater Festival, Chicago Opera Theater, Chicago Youth Symphony Orchestras, Exile in Bookville, Jazz Institute of Chicago, Liederstube, Monsieur Pamplemousse, Natya Dance Theatre, Press Here Studio and the Second Floor Art Gallery exhibiting Don Yang. A concert by pianist and piano teacher Dr. Yulia Lipmanovich will recreate part of the piano recital by Fannie Bloomfield Zeisler that opened the Studebaker Theater in 1898. Public registration for the free event is here.
Touring Open House Chicago This Weekend
Forty sites have been added for a total of over 170 to this year’s free Open House Chicago, tallies Block Club. “Notable buildings and places open for public tours this year include Walt Disney’s birthplace home, the Chicago Shakespeare Theater and the Pullman National Historical Park.” The Sun-Times offers a survey here. The complete list of sites, across twenty neighborhoods, is here.
Weekend Interruptions For Brown, Red, Purple Lines
“CTA Red, Purple and Brown line service will be disrupted on some upcoming weekends this fall, as the next stage of a major reconstruction of North Side tracks and stations begins,” reports the Trib. “Brown Line interruptions are expected between the Belmont and Southport stops from Saturday through Monday. The Red and Purple lines are expected to be disrupted from Belmont to Addison the weekends of October 27-30, and November 10-13.” The CTA will provide shuttle buses between stations. “The work is part of the $2.1 billion Red and Purple line modernization project that is upgrading part of CTA’s busiest stretch of track. It includes a new flyover near the busy Belmont station that opened in November 2021 and carries northbound Brown Line trains over the Red and Purple tracks.”
Metra Revising Fare Structure
“Metra officially proposes nixing the ten-ride ticket,” writes the Sun-Times, plus “reducing zones from ten to four… Metra is also seeking to end promotional $6 and $10 day passes and a $100 monthly pass introduced after the pandemic to attract riders. The ten-ride ticket will be replaced with a ‘Day Pass 5-Pack,’ available only on the Ventra app.” Writes the Trib, “The proposal includes no planned substantial changes to schedules, as Metra faces continued low ridership and a looming fiscal cliff once federal pandemic aid runs out, but the agency is eyeing service additions or changes as needed.”
DINING & DRINKING
Kumiko Again Named One Of World’s Best Bars, At No. 82
“The place to be at this Japanese-inspired venue is in one of the eight seats at the bar, enjoying the sophisticated cocktails of creative director Julia Momose,” writes World’s 50 Best, as it slots Kumiko at number eighty-two. “At the bar or at one of the few tables in the minimalist omakase-style dining room, Japanese ingredients are showcased in the drinks as well as the compact selection of small plates. There’s a small outdoor area, The Garden, as well as an intimate space in the basement entitled Kikko, with ten seats at a counter. In addition to the cocktails, Kumiko specializes in sake, with some inspired food-pairing suggestions to accompany these, and a collection of bottles to take home, too.”
Tenth Annual Logan Square Chefs Dinner At Lula Cafe
Tickets are on sale for the tenth Annual Logan Square Chef’s Dinner, a benefit for Comfort Station. Much of Comfort Station’s operating and programming expenses are covered through donations and sponsorships from local patrons and businesses, with the annual dinner a significant source of funding that the organization receives each year. Chef Jason Hammel will be joined by other neighborhood chefs: Diana Davila (Mi Tocaya), Joe Frillman (Daisies), Ethan Pikas (Cellar Door Provisions), Ryan Pfeiffer (Big Kids), Zeeshan Shah and Yoshi Yamada (Superkhana International), with cocktails from Matthias Merges (Billy Sunday) and beer from Middlebrow.
“This dream team of local epicurean talent will collaborate on a six-course feast, bringing expertise and special touches from their respective restaurants.” Since Lula Cafe opened in 1999, Logan Square has become a culinary destination in Chicago, and the annual Chef’s Dinner reflects the broad array of talent located blocks from one another. Tickets at $250 per person include all food, drinks, tax and tip. Monday, November 6. Dinner starts at 6pm with cocktails and hors d’oeuvres. Tickets here.
Food Service Conglomerate Sysco To Buy Local Supplier Edward Don
“Food service giant Sysco is buying Chicago-area restaurant and food service supplier Edward Don & Company,” reports Crain’s. “The deal will allow Houston-based Sysco ‘to add strategic new capabilities and diversified offerings to complement its existing business and create a specialty Equipment and Supplies platform that will provide better selection and service to customers.'”
FILM & TELEVISION
Black Harvest Tickets On Sale Today
Screened exclusively at the Gene Siskel Film Center November 3-16, the twenty-ninth Black Harvest Film Festival celebrates “Revolutionary Visions,” the history, politics and art honoring the remarkable legacy of revolutionary struggle across the Diaspora. This year’s festival will showcase twenty feature films, ten short film programs, special presentations and discussions, as well as a tribute to the late visionary director John Singleton. Full lineup here. Memberships here. Single tickets go on sale today, Friday, October 13.
Studios Suspend Talks With Actors: Not Willing To Share Profits
“‘The gap between the AMPTP and SAG-AFTRA is too great,’ say the studios,” reports Elaine Low in the free Strikegeist newsletter. “We’re on Day 90 of the actors strike, which began in mid-July. ‘After meaningful conversations, it is clear that the gap between the AMPTP and SAG-AFTRA is too great…’ said the bargaining entity representing the studios and streamers.” A source says “there hasn’t been much forward movement, particularly over the issues of AI and revenue sharing.” The complete offer is at the link.
Variety: “NBCUniversal content chief Donna Langley has vowed that the top executives involved in contract negotiations with SAG-AFTRA will devote the time it takes to reach a new deal.” Langley says she hopes to “make sure the pipeline of content continues, particularly for next year,” reports Deadline. “I’m not relishing the thought of another summer season without a volume of films. If I learned anything during COVID, it was the lack of volume… really does [affect] the moviegoing cadence…If we lose that, that’s going to have a lasting impact on our industry.”
Publishers Also Threaten American Library System
“In addition to political censorship and budget cuts, libraries are being undermined by rapacious digital licensing agreements,” opines the Guardian. “The traditional practice of libraries is to buy or acquire published materials, preserve and catalog them, and lend them widely and confidentially. When books were printed on paper, the laws governing these practices remained clear for more than a century… In the digital age, every one of these functions has been denied to libraries, or recently even declared illegal in the United States… The ownership of digital books is routinely denied to libraries. Many books are offered to libraries in electronic form only, under restrictive temporary licenses; libraries can never own these e-books, but must pay for them over and over as if they were Netflix movies. Some publishers have even explicitly named libraries as direct economic competitors.”
Twenty-Three-Year-Old Man Arrested For Bomb Threats To Suburban Libraries
A twenty-three-year-old Skokie resident “has been arrested and charged with levying dozens of threats of bombings and other forms of violence against dozens of libraries and businesses around the Chicago area,” reports NBC 5. “Niles police, in conjunction with Morton Grove police and the FBI’s Joint Terrorist Task Force, took the suspect into custody in Niles. According to Morton Grove police, a total of twelve threats were levied against the village, as well as its public library and other businesses. Skokie police reported that at least sixteen threats were levied against… institutions… Niles, Wilmette, Glenview and Northbrook police all reported similar threats.”
FTC Proposes Ticket Sellers State Service Fees Up Front
“The Federal Trade Commission is proposing a new rule that would require businesses, such as ticket sellers or hotels, to show the total price, inclusive of fees, to customers upfront,” writes the Hollywood Reporter. “The rule would not set a limit on the fees, but rather would require broader disclosures, including detailing the purpose of the fees and whether or not they are refundable. This action comes as President Biden has made cutting down on the so-called junk fees one of the priorities of his administration.”
Evanston Rejects Northwestern Stadium Concert Demands
“The Land Use Commission approved a planned development authorizing [Northwestern’s] new $800 million Ryan Field, but the panel rejects a request for concerts, similar events,” reports the Sun-Times.
Steppenwolf’s “POTUS: Or, Behind Every Great Dumbass Are Seven Women Trying to Keep Him Alive” In Rehearsal
Steppenwolf Theatre Company continues its forty-eighth season with the Chicago premiere of Selina Fillinger’s farce “POTUS: Or, Behind Every Great Dumbass Are Seven Women Trying to Keep Him Alive,” “a satirical, laugh-out-loud look at the women in charge of the man in charge,” directed by artistic director Audrey Francis. “POTUS” will feature ensemble members Celeste M. Cooper, Sandra Marquez, Caroline Neff and Karen Rodriguez, with Karen Aldridge, Chloe Baldwin and Meighan Gerachis. “POTUS” runs October 26-December 3 in Steppenwolf’s Downstairs Theater. Single tickets starting at $20 are on sale here.
ARTS & CULTURE & ETC.
UChicago Celebrates Forty-Third Annual Humanities Day
The inspiration behind the Chicago Humanities Festival, UChicago’s annual Humanities Day, takes place this year on October 21. A tradition begun in 1980, this free event gathers UChicago faculty, students and the surrounding community for a day of presentations and exhibition tours, exchanges with field-leading experts, food trucks, temporary tattoos and more. The day will feature a keynote lecture from cultural theorist Sianne Ngai on aesthetic judgments and capitalism, as well as a talk by W. J. T. Mitchell on the implications of AI for education, business and politics, plus conversations about ethics, classic poetry and Joan of Arc. Saturday, October 21, 9:30am-4pm, in classrooms and lecture halls throughout the University of Chicago campus. The event is open to the public. While the sessions and tours are free, register to attend in person or virtually.
Lincoln Park Wants Robbery Spree Addressed
“Attacks are [part of the surge] in robberies this year across Lincoln Park, a trend being seen in other parts of the city as well,” reports Block Club. The Lincoln Park community area has seen at least 148 robberies as of Monday, up sixty-three percent from the same point last year… ‘It’s very unsettling, and people are frustrated,’ said Lincoln Park Ald. Timmy Knudsen (43rd). ‘I want attention given here in Lincoln Park, but we need attention in the same way any neighborhood in the city does.’ … September saw a rash of robberies across North Side neighborhoods like Lincoln Park and Lakeview, including multiple attacks targeting DePaul University students. Neighbors have expressed frustration with the growing robbery trend, while local leaders have called for both short- and long-term solutions.”
Possible Next PM Of NZ Was Big In 606
“As an ambitious executive in Chicago, Christopher Luxon marketed deodorant to American men with a Super Bowl spot that mocked ‘wusses’ and ‘mama’s boys.’ A decade later, as the boss of Air New Zealand, he aimed to crack the Chinese market with cheap flights, easier visas and a reality TV show. On Saturday, if the polls are accurate, the businessman-turned-politician will lead the center-right National Party to win the largest share of the vote in New Zealand’s election. Although he will need to form a coalition to govern, a process that could take weeks, he will be in pole position to be the country’s next prime minister,” reports the Washington Post. “After university, Luxon joined multinational corporation Unilever’s operations in Wellington. By 2003, he had become one of the company’s top executives for North America. He lived in Chicago for five years and gained a reputation as a risk-taker with the snarky Super Bowl 2005 ad for Degree deodorant.”
Nonprofit Hospitals Hide Their Charity Under A Bushel
“Nonprofit hospitals get billions in tax breaks to provide low-income patients with free or low cost care. But most are reducing the charity care they give. Now Bernie Sanders is trying to cut tax breaks for these hospitals unless they ramp up care for those in need,” relays More Perfect Union (via Twitter/X). “Most hospitals in the United States are technically ‘nonprofits.'” Sanders’ “team has released a report showing that sixteen of the largest nonprofit hospital chains ‘spent only an estimated $16 billion on charity care in 2020’ while getting $28 billion in tax breaks.” Sanders: “Those hospitals have made information about their charity care programs difficult to access, leaving many patients unaware that they may qualify for free or discounted care.”
“People are unlikely to ask for care they’re not even aware they’re entitled to. The report from Bernie’s team also calls out the staggering levels of CEO pay at some of the nonprofit hospitals, with the highest figure reaching a stunning $32 million.” The eight-page report is here (pdf).
Are Employers Underestimating Worker Frustration?
“UPS, the Hollywood studios and the Detroit automakers appear to have been taken aback by the tactics and tougher style adopted by new union leaders,” writes Noam Scheiber at The New York Times. “Given the unions’ apparent bargaining power and the economic costs to a prolonged work stoppage, the question arises: Why wouldn’t management make its eventual concessions more quickly? The answer, many union and management experts say, is that employers are increasingly miscalculating—acting from a template that applied in previous decades, when employees had little leverage, and underestimating the frustration and resolve in the postpandemic work force.”
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