The Beverly Art Walk is back, and while concerns about COVID-19 remain substantial, such events provide optimism—and boost the local economy.

As demonstrators in Havana, Cuba, marched through the streets earlier this month waving U.S. flags, former Illinois Gov. George Ryan sat in his Kankakee home, watched the reports on television and remembered another controversy regarding the Stars and Stripes and Cuba.

The second phase of the 111th Street streetscape project in Mt. Greenwood is set to begin in 2022 and be completed in 2023.

As life returns to normal, or nearly normal, it is refreshing and inspiring to see the many local fundraisers being held, either for the first time or in a return after a one-year hiatus.

Congratulations to the Class of 2021, whether it’s graduates from kindergarten, elementary school, high school, college or graduate school.

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How sad, in just over 50 years, we have gone from our nation’s most famous civil rights icon dreaming that his children “will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character” to the African-American mayor of the third largest city in America determining access …

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Yes, a local dog park is desired, but please do not put a dog park at the south end of Ridge Park and proceed to destroy one of the last natural parkways in the city.

As our world works to return to “normal,” I am reminded—every day—that the Crisis Center for South Suburbia would never have survived the past 14 months without the incredible generosity and support of the community.

Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot landed in a maelstrom of controversy last month when she said she only would allow “journalists of color” to interview her for pieces about her first two years in office.

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Some positives have occurred during the pandemic, as hard as they might be to appreciate sometimes.

The Beverly Area Planning Association (BAPA) hosted a meeting on May 20 to discuss the idea of having the Chicago Park District install a dog park in Beverly/Morgan Park.

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On behalf of Marty & Reese’s Warriors Polar Plunge team benefitting Special Olympics Chicago/Special Children’s Charities and our children and future Special Olympics athletes Marty McGowan and Reese Panatera, we would like to acknowledge our extraordinary neighbors of Beverly, Morgan Pa…

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On Saturday, May 8, nurse authors of the recently published “Through Our Eyes” participated in a book signing along Western Avenue to highlight Nurses Week 2021.

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Citizens of the United States received great—if not surprising—news on May 13 when the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention announced that people fully vaccinated against COVID-19 do not need to wear facemasks in most places.

A local business owner recently donated $2,000 worth of “The Bucks Stay Here” gift cards to four local businesses—as well as another $500 to a business not participating in the promotion. Businesses were instructed to treat their customers, a pleasant surprise that they happily welcomed.

As executive director of Garden Center Services, I can say that this challenging past year of the pandemic has been especially stressful for community-based agencies like ours that provide residential support to adults with intellectual and/or developmental disabilities.

Imagine a state government with the worst credit rating in the nation borrowing money to pay off the personal debts of individuals with six-digit incomes who are buying homes that cost as much as $500,000.

“Beat 123 to 911 Center, alleged perpetrator who just shot four victims surprisingly did not volunteer to be arrested upon my arrival, instead opted to flee. Can you contact my supervisor and secure a Foot Chase Authorization number? Will stand by for reply.”

With her election on April 6 as mayor of Evergreen Park, Kelly Burke has again demonstrated her devotion to public service.

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