Showing posts from July, 2007

Report from a recycling block captain

1st Ward residents continue to use their blue carts enthusiastically – and on behalf of the principles of resource conservation and environmental preservation, I thank you! If you’re really recycling all you could be, you’ve probably noticed a big change in what’s going into those old black supercarts. Before the blue carts came, you may have needed two, three or even four supercarts for your building’s garbage. Now that more than half of what you used to throw away is being recycled, your black toters are probably not being filled up. Some people have complained to me that the blue carts make the alleys “too crowded.” Not a problem. If you find you don’t need all the black garbage carts you formerly used, the Department of Streets and Sanitation (DSS) urges you to give them up. When the garbage truck comes for pickup and the crews have to empty two half-filled carts, that takes twice as much time than emptying one full cart. This is a significant efficiency issue when you think abou

Discounted Compost bins on sale this weekend!

Now that you’re recycling all that paper, plastic, and other former trash, what about recycling your organic waste by COMPOSTING? The City of Chicago is selling discounted compost bins ($30) and rain barrels ($40) this weekend. Where: Chicago Center for Green Technology, 445 N. Sacramento Blvd. When: Saturday, July 14, 10 a.m. – noon The sale is open to all Chicago residents, and limited to 1 rain barrel and 1 composter per household. Please pay by check, made payable to City of Chicago, cash will not be accepted. For information on how to compost, visit the Chicago Recycling Coalition’s website: , in the “extreme recycling” section.

EVA General Membership Meeting: July 10th

Because of the July 4 holiday, the July EVA monthly membership meeting will be held on Tuesday, July 10, at 7 pm, and the Board meeting on Monday July 16th at 6:30pm (public welcome) at Happy Village Tavern. Kara Salgado, the Executive Director of West Town Chamber of Commerce, has agreed to be the guest speaker at the EVA July meeting on Tuesday, July 10. Kara’s presentation will address such issues as the chamber’s service area, recent accomplishments, goals for the future, and upcoming events such as the Renegade Craft Fair (recently written up in The New York Times) and West Fest. We hope that her presentation will complement the excellent talk presented by Paula Barrington, Executive Director of the Wicker Park & Bucktown Chamber of Commerce, at our June meeting. Please come to the July meeting to hear how the West Town Chamber is helping to shape our community’s future. Also, Phil McFarland, one of the owners of Piccolo, a new Italian-style café at 859 N. Damen, an

East Village Association Has a New Website!! by Mary Szpur

After over twenty years of operations, the East Village Association has established an identity in cyperspace with its new website at Since its inception, EVA has produced a monthly newsletter, which has served as a vital communication system and storehouse for neighborhood history. So why change? Because websites offer great options for improving the timeliness and presentation of information. Anyone with access to the internet can now read about EVA. We are therefore happy to provide this tool to the neighborhood. Please visit the new website and let us know what you think. The site is still evolving and under construction. The EVA newsletter will still be published, although probably less frequently. We may go to a quarterly newsletter format in the near future. Because some of our neighbors do no use or do not have access to the internet, EVA will remain committed to producing paper editions of the newsletter. Many, many thanks to Steve Rynkiewicz, who d

EVA President’s Message by Mary Szpur

You may think you know our neighborhood, but maybe you don’t. You may think because you have visited the restaurants, bars, and boutique retail shops on our commercial streets that you know what East Village is like, but maybe you don’t, not really. This neighborhood is more than a destination for drinking, eating, listening to contemporary music, or even going to the theater. You may know just a segment of the place where you live. In fact, the place where you live may be even more exotic than you think, but you may never see any of that. Have you ever intersected in a meaningful way with the ethnic groups that used to comprise this neighborhood, and still do, to some extent: Puerto Rican, Ukrainian, Polish? Have you ever met or spoken with any of the senior citizens of our community, people who may have some familiarity with what this neighborhood once was, and sometimes still is? Recently I went to a concert of the Ukrainian Bandurist Chorus at the Chopin School on Rice Street, west

A New Café: PICCOLO at 859 North Dame

Piccolo is a small Italian-style cafe featuring house-made gelato, fresh panini with the best ingredients, mix and match bruschetta made to order and a variety of fresh salads. They will offer various deserts, coffee drinks and other snack items. The menu has been designed by Eddie Navar, former pastry chef at Carnivale and Hot Chocolate under Mindy Siegel. The interior will feature a custom designed Italian counter and freezer case made from rich ebony woods and stainless steel and will be complimented by an easy palette of earth tones in the rest of the space. They hope to be open by Friday, July 6 and the hours of operation will be 11am - 9pm 7 days a week. Qui si mangia bene!

EVA’s Aldermanic Liaison by Greg Nagel

Dear Neighbors, As the expression goes, "The Squeaky Wheel Get The Grease". So, lets make sure our voice is heard with our Alderman. As I understand it, my role will be to increase communication between the EVA and Alderman Flores and Waguespack. If you have any issues at all, please feel free to call my cell (312-933- 1432) or email me at I will be meeting with Alderman Flores every other week and I also have his cell number as well. Alderman Waguespack has not established a ward night yet,however, I have one of his assistant's cell phone and that seems to be working pretty well. When I meet with the Alderman I will ask them what issues they would like me to bring back to the board and membership, I will champion any issues any members have asked me to carry to the Alderman, and I will ask the three questions suggested to me at the last meeting (1. Any new demolition permits?, 2. Any new zoning changes, & 3. Any new liquor licenses). Furthermore

A New Street Festival For Division Street

by Kara Salgado Exciting News! The West Town Chamber of Commerce proposed planning and managing a new street festival for Division Street to the Division Street Merchants Association (DSMA) at their May 16th meeting, and everyone there agreed to the plan. The Renegade Craft Fair is moving their event out of Wicker Park, and thus the chamber proposed that Renegade move to Division Street and partner with us to create an all new fabulous street festival event: The Do-Division Street Fest & Rengade Craft Fair September 15th & 16th, 2007. The chamber has received preliminary approvals from the City to close down the street for the event and permit applications have been submitted. Willa Reynolds (former owner of Wag Artworks on Division Street and Vendor Coordinator for West Fest) and chamber Executive Director Kara Salgado measured the site and the event will take place on Division Street between Damen and Marshfield Street (traffic reroute at Ashland.) The Renegade Craft Fair wil

Planning, Preservation & Development Committee Update by Scott A. Rappe

This month, with the assistance of Steve Rynkiewicz, we got a secure online workspace up and running. This ‘wiki’, a sort of collaborative webpage, can be easily accessed and edited by committee members. Although in its infancy, the PD&D wiki has a number of pages that will assist committee members: • The Issues Log page will be used for tracking the status of committee issues. It is divided into two parts: Landmark & Zoning Issues, for tracking requests for zoning changes and the community group letter required for permitting in the EV Landmark District, and Development Advocacy Issues, for tracking things the committee may want consider proactively. The log contains documents, articles and web links related to each issue so that committee members can familiarize themselves. • The Resources page has helpful links to the Departments of Zoning and Construction & Permits for researching zoning maps, building permits as well as links to the Cook County Assessor's database

A Post Office Progress Report by Scott A. Rappe, hopeful postal customer

The April newsletter included a ‘report card’ on which to record postal delivery performance. The following data is based on the postal delivery service to my office during the month of May. This was the first month we tracked the postal service’s accuracy, but it does seem that there has been some improvement from the typical service we had been receiving previously. Overall, 349 out of a total of 374 pieces of mail were delivered correctly; an average accuracy of 93%. Depending on the grading curve used, this would qualify as a B+, or even an A. The majority of the problems we experienced were with mail intended for someone else, but delivered to us. This is surprising, since this would seem to be the fundamental mission of the post office. All of the incorrectly delivered mail was clearly addressed and much of it was blocks away from its intended Notable for its absence were several persistent problems that we had experienced for years. Chief among these were mail left dangerously a

East Village Association General Membership Meeting Minutes

East Village Association General Membership Meeting Minutes 7 PM June 5, 2007, Happy Village Tavern Submitted by John Sekowski Attendance Members: 12 Non-members:10 Approximate numbers, i.e. not all attended signed in. 1. Guest Speaker was Paula Barrington from the Bucktown-Wicker Park Chamber of Commerce. Ms. Barrington spoke on what the organization does including courthouse appearances for community support, zoning committee to submit recommendations to the alderman including landmarking the Milwaukee Avenue commercial district, lobbying to where money for special service areas should go. One of the bigger challenges they are facing is to keep independent stores and minimize national chains. 2. The Secretary sent a thank you note to Commander Kohlman for last months presentation. 3. May meeting minutes were approved. 4. Treasurer reported that there is $1,404.18 in the account. 5. Membership is currently at approximately 50 memberships. 6. The planning committee announced that they
Tom Tomek business card
Anselmo @properties business card,
Ask Nagel business card.