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CHICAGO NEIGHBORHOOD NEWS - OLD TOWN, LAKEVIEW, OAK PARK, WEST LOOP, PORTAGE PARK

OLD TOWN

Today is cleanup and damage assessment day after the fire that occurred late afternoon yesterday, Wednesday 8/26, at Pipers Alley Commercial Mall Shopping Center (1610-12 N. Wells). It's been reported that the fire began as a grease fire in the Adobo Grill kitchen on the first floor that spread to the roof and attic through the ventilation system. The third floor offices of Second City seems to have incurred the most damage but so far the theater is reported to have remained intact. However water damages still need to be assessed. The best news is that people were evacuated quickly and only 4 firemen and 1 other individual were hospitalized for minor injuries and are in stable condition. Second City and UP Comedy Club performances and classes have been cancelled in the interim. Ticketholders will be contacted and refunded, and students will be notified when classes and camps can start back up.

LAKEVIEW

The summertime Thursday evening farmers market at the Southport Brown Line CTA station for the past 3 years, known as the Low Line Market, is expanding. Since June it's added 5 new vendors for a total of 15 and has plans to include musical performances and more. The Market opens every Thursday at 3:00pm until 8:00pm until 9/10. Then the end time will be 7:00pm until the end of the season on 10/8.

OAK PARK

Although months later than expected Pete's Fresh Market, the new grocery store to replace the 2013 closing of Dominick's at 259 Lake St., is set to open by Wednesday 9/2. The delay was caused by unexpected fixes that needed to be made to the infrastructure of the building. It wasn't as simple as a redecorating job. Pete's has been working hard to keep up the pace since the Oak Park Economic Development Corporation had given them a $1.5 million incentive to open relatively quickly. Since the delay they've been required to pay back $750 per day since July. Next week's opening will be a relief to everyone. This will be the 12th Pete's location to be opened in the Chicagoland area.

WEST LOOP

Golf fans, you have until Friday 9/4 to win 2 tickets to the BMW Championship,  the 4-day tournament event of the PGA Tour taking place from 9/17 - 9/20 at Conway Farms in Lake Forest, IL.  All you have to do is putt a hole-in-one shot at the latest art installation at 2 N. Riverside Plaza. Contestants will get only 2 chances at making the putt every day at 11:30am - 1:30pm, and 3:30pm - 5:30pm until Friday 9/4. There's no charge to give it a shot so get there early so you don't miss your opportunity.

PORTAGE PARK

There's an open call for adult volunteers to help teenagers meet their goals at the after-school program at Slingshots (4839 W. Irving Park) for the coming school year this fall. The after-school program begins after Labor Day, 9/7, and runs from 3:00pm - 7:00pm on weekdays. Slingshots is a Christian based organization that links teenagers with mentors to help with vocational training, musical interests, socialization and Bible studies. If you're interested in being a positive influence to teens between 6th through 12th grades, follow the links to complete volunteering form or to learn more information.

CATHY MALLERS & DEAN’S TEAM CHICAGO

KATHY'S HOME & GARDEN TIPS - SCHOOL LUNCH IDEAS

School is just around the corner for Chicago Public School students. Many suburban schools have already started. Moms and Dads are always looking for ideas to keep kids interested (and eating) their lunches. You can make healthy and fun lunches for the kids to enjoy.

First of all make it easy on yourself. Many items can be made ahead of time. Use snack bags to portion out mini pretzels, cheese crackers or Goldfish®. Place juice boxes, yogurts, and cheese sticks in their own place in the refrigerator. Use clear trays or bins. Kids can choose one from each while making lunch in the mornings.

Kids love fun shapes. Get some cutters at the craft store and go crazy. Fruit, cheese and bread can all be cut into fun shapes. Add a small container of salad dressing for the veggies or use yogurt as a fruit dip. Cut sandwiches into bite size shapes for fun.

Roll-up sandwiches are popular with kids. Take a large flour tortilla. Use a spreadable cheese first. Layer on the meat of your choice. Kids tend to prefer milder meats like turkey and ham but some are more adventurous and love salami and pepperoni. Add lettuce and cheese. Roll tightly and secure with a frilly toothpick. Or slice and lay the slices flat in the container for a pretty presentation. Make pizza roll-ups. Open a can of crescent rolls. Unroll and separate into two squares. Press together at the perforations and roll lightly with a rolling pin to smooth out. Cover each square with chopped pepperoni and mozzarella. Roll loosely and slice into ¾ inch coins. Lay flat on a sprayed cookie sheet and bake till golden brown. These can be made up to three days ahead and can be eaten at room temperature.

Kebabs are great fun and will get even the pickiest eaters loving lunch. Make fruit kebabs with chunks of melon and pineapples, grapes, strawberries, kiwi and banana slices. Use a little cream cheese mixed with orange juice for dip. Veggies that work well are cucumbers, grape tomatoes and colorful peppers. These can be cut into shapes also. Make melon balls and alternate colors on frilly toothpicks. Make sandwich kebabs with bread, cheese, and meat cut in small shapes. You can use pretzel sticks instead of toothpicks.

Make your own Lunchables® for less than half price. Use cupcake papers in a shallow flat lunch containers. Fill with crackers and meat and cheese rounds. Finish off with a drink pouch and dessert. Do an apple and peanut butter snack. Slice an apple lengthwise into eight sections. Put the apple back together and secure with a rubber band, keeps the apple from browning. Add a small container of peanut butter for a healthy lunch.

So get those funny cookie cutters and frilly toothpicks out and let’s make lunches fun all year. Make lunches the night before for stress free mornings.

KATHLEEN WEAVER-ZECH & DEAN'S TEAM CHICAGO
TECHNOLOGY TIPS - SHOPPING JUST GOT EASIER LADIES!

Unlike some of my counterparts, I'm not much of a clothing shopper. I really like to simply get in, get what I need and then get out. This past weekend when speaking with a friend of mind, we were talking about what's out there now for those of us who do not like to shop.  The first that we spoke about is this newer concept of renting clothing for a month.

The sample I'm going to use is Gwynnie Bee. It's actually quite ingenious how the whole system works. You create your own guest account. Start looking through the entire collection from multiple designers, styles, etc. Once you've had a chance to view everything, you subscribe to the plan that works best for you. Once you've added the clothes you want to try to your closet, they are shipped to you within a few days. Since it's rental and not ownership, the limitations on returning pieces is pretty generous. If you find that you absolutely must keep a piece, you can purchase it online. For all other items you have rented, you get to keep them for a month and then must return them. It's great though because everything is sent back in prepaid bags and cleaning is managed by Gwynnie Bee. Gwynnie has several subscription rates available including 1, 2, 3, 5, 7 or 10 garments at a time plans.

The other option is a newly introduced app for shoppers who are looking for something specific. The app is called Donde Fashion. The search function is extremely easy to use. Let's say you want a blue dress with a sweet heart neckline and you want to compare what the major chains are currently carrying. Essentially, you put in the type of garment you want to search and filter by everything else, including price range. If you find what you like you can purchase through the app or go to the individual site. Either way, the system searches images as opposed to individual sites. For the time being the app only searches women's clothing and accessories but it will be moved into more segments of retail including home goods, menswear, etc.

I say enjoy your summer and let the others do the shopping!

CATHY MALLERS & DEAN'S TEAM CHICAGO

THIS WEEKEND IN CHICAGO - SUMMER PASSING BY – NOT CHICAGO’S NEIGHBORHOOD FESTS!

If summer seems to be passing you by, that’s because it is! But you still have time to enjoy what’s left of summer at this weekend’s neighborhood festivals.

One of my favorite food fests is returning for its 26th year to the West Loop neighborhood (100-400 S. Halsted St.) with the Taste of Greektown this Saturday and Sunday from 12:00 p.m. to 11:00 p.m. Besides the main attraction being tantalizing Greek food and drinks from neighborhood eateries such as Athena, Greek Islands, The Parthenon, Santorini and others, there will be plenty of music from Greek bands and performances by belly dancers as well as a fine arts area and games for both kids and families! This truly is a culinary fest for lovers of Mediterranean culture!! Opa!!!

The West Loop Art Fair will bring an amazing lineup of nearly 167 talented artists from across the country showcasing and selling their creative work in a variety of mediums this Saturday (10:00 a.m.-10:00 p.m.) and Sunday (10:00 a.m.-9:00 p.m.) at 800 W. Washington Blvd. (Halsted to Aberdeen Streets) in the West Loop. Needless to say, neighborhood restaurants will offer flavorful food and drinks for every type of palate with live performances of rocking music for a taste of why this is one of the City’s hottest emerging neighborhoods!

Celebrating the ethnic diversity and uniqueness of its neighborhood, the Albany Park World Fest returns for its 2nd year to Lawrence and Kimball Avenues in the Albany Park neighborhood this Saturday (12:00 p.m.-10:00 p.m.) and Sunday (12:00 p.m.-9:00 p.m.). Highlights of this fest include eclectic cuisine from local and non-local vendors, globe-spanning music from Brazilian beats to salsa to calypso to Asian drums and more, arts & crafts vendors, carnival rides and much more!

Finally, if you want to really experience Chicago’s rich culture and history, then the Chicago Trolley Neighborhood Routes tours are worth checking into at the Chicago Trolley and Double Decker Co. located at the Water Tower Pumping Station (806 N. Michigan Ave.) in the Gold Coast neighborhood with tours taking place between 9:15 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. There are 3 routes to choose from: Wrigley Field Route takes you to the Lincoln Park Zoo, the Briar Street Theatre (home of the Blue Man Group) and, of course, Wrigley Field; Museum of Science and Industry Route takes you through Chinatown on your way through the historic Bronzeville neighborhood (birthplace of Chicago’s blues and jazz scene) and on to the Museum of Science and Industry; Greektown Route takes you to the former site of the O'Leary’s barn (origin of the Great Chicago Fire), to the near west side’s Little Italy neighborhood, to the Pilsen neighborhood and returning to Greektown on Halsted Street!

This weekend’s Movies in the Parks are –

Saturday

“Angels in the Outfield” – Chopin Park (3420 N. Long Ave.) – Portage Park
“Frozen” – Armour Square Park (3309 S. Shields Ave.) – Armour Square
“The Wizard of Oz” – Gross Park (2708 W. Lawrence Ave.) – Lincoln Square

Sunday

“Big Hero 6” – Holstein Park (2200 N. Oakley Ave.) – Logan Square
“Insurgent” – Lake Shore Park (808 N. Lake Shore Dr.) – Near North Side
“The Wizard of Oz” – Oz Park (2021 N. Burling St.) – Lincoln Park

Don’t Let Summer Pass You By!  Or, Have You Forgotten What Winter Is Like?

SUE MOSS & DEAN'S TEAM CHICAGO
CHICAGO NEIGHBORHOOD NEWS - NAPERVILLE, LINCOLN SQUARE, NORWOOD PARK, LOOP, LINCOLN PARK

NAPERVILLE

Naperville Public Library is looking to develop a strategic plan to improve their services by learning what is most important to the community by use of a customer opinion survey. The survey can be accessed online at surveymonkey.com/r/napervillelibrary or at any of the three libraries in Naperville: Nichols Library (200 W. Jefferson Ave), Naper Boulevard Library (2035 S. Naper Blvd), 95th Street Library (3015 Cedar Glade Rd). The survey will be used to create attainable goals with the help of the Libraries Thrive Consulting firm. The deadline for submitting your opinions is tomorrow, Friday 8/21 by 5:00pm!

LINCOLN SQUARE The beginning of a new school year is right around the corner and the Lincoln Square/Ravenswood Chamber of Commerce has marked their Events Calendar with the 40th Ward Immunization Event taking place this Saturday, 8/22, from 10:00am - 2:00pm. Bring your children, between the ages of  birth to 18, and their shot records to the Chicago CareVan that will be parked at 5850 N. Lincoln Ave. this Saturday for all recommended vaccines (except chickenpox) and free school supplies. You do not have to be a resident of the 40th Ward for the event. Call 773-769-1140 for more information.

NORWOOD PARK

It's time for an update from the four Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Noise Workshops, including the one held at Taft High School on 8/11. According to DNAinfo.com, more than 2,230 attendees came to the four workshops around the Northwest Side to voice their complaints about the runway noise and concerns of the decline of their property values. WTTW's Chicago Tonight has provided video from the workshops and a diagram showing the intent to complete six parallel runways running east to west by 2020. Some plans to reduce noise pollution are to rotate the use of runways week to week, steepening the angle at which planes take off and land, and expanding the areas eligible to receive government funding to insulate and noise proof homes. Residents hope that their input from these workshops will be seriously considered to maintain their quality of living.

LOOP

There's a new exhibit to be seen on the ground floor of Merchandise Mart. Last Wednesday, 8/12, was Build Night for this year's ninth annual Canstruction competition, the charitable competition between architectural firms tasked to design and build elaborate structures made out of canned food. After the exhibit's last day which is Monday, 9/7 the structures will be dismantled and the cans will be donated to the Greater Chicago Food Depository. A Cocktail Reception will be held Thursday 9/3 at 6:00pm and apparently you can come to watch the "Decanstruction" on Tuesday, 9/8, at 5:00pm.

LINCOLN PARK

We're helping spread the word that at least one of the many Chicago community gardens is open to the public to enjoy the harvest of blooming vegetables and herbs. Fire Station Park at 1900 N. Larrabee St. is a unique community garden that is managed by a few members of the Lincoln Central Association that have taken it upon themselves to use government allocated funds to renovate the park and use the garden as an interactive, educational attraction. Volunteers are welcome to help with upkeep and the best way to get people to care is to get them involved. So anyone is welcome to pluck vegetables from the ends of their stems or clip herbs with scissors to use in their home cooked meals.

CATHY MALLERS & DEAN’S TEAM CHICAGO

HOMEOWNERS: STILL TIED UP IN CONGRESS - TAX DEDUCTION EXTENSIONS THAT COULD SAVE YOU MONEY!

EXEMPTIONS FOR TAX ON FORGIVEN MORTGAGE DEBT, TAX CREDIT FOR ENERGY-EFFICIENCY IMPROVEMENTS, MORTGAGE INSURANCE DEDUCTIONS STILL ON THE TABLE IN CONGRESS!

In recent years, U.S. Homeowners and Homebuyers have been grateful recipients of Popular Tax Benefits that have prevented them from possibly-considerable tax payments to the IRS.  They took advantage of other tax programs that created incentives for things like making Energy-Efficient Improvements to your home.

Several of these key measures, however, have expired.  They wait for action by Congress to extend them, retroactively.

As detailed by Syndicated Real Estate Writer Kenneth Harney, as found in the Chicago Tribune, one tax benefit applied extensively as the Real Estate Market Tumbled beginning in 2008 was the Mortgage Debt Relief Act.  This Law allowed distressed sellers of properties in Short Sales, Foreclosures, or certain Loan Modifications to escape a heavy tax liability on the portion of their mortgage debt forgiven by their lender.  Technically, this Act expired at the end of 2014.  If not extended in arrears, however, any debt deficiency written off by mortgage lenders could be taxed by the IRS as forgiven debt from any other non-mortgage loan, and at a full tax rate!

The Act has been used by thousands of underwater homeowners over the last few years.  The estimated cost to extend the Act through 2016 - $5.1 Billion!

Another popular Tax Incentive offered up to a $500 tax credit - not a deduction - for homeowners who installed certain types of windows and doors, heating and cooling systems, or insulation.  A similar tax provision incentives Builders who construct Energy-Efficient Homes.

 Yet another incentive provides for Deductibility of  Mortgage Insurance Premiums on  low-down-payment loans for many Lower and Middle-Income Homebuyers.   This deduction is of special benefit to First-Time Homebuyers, who buy their homes with less than 20% Down Payment.

Will these popular tax benefits on Residential Real Estate be Extended?  Likely, YES!  But most experts expect considerable Lawmaker Debate, and likely passage in late Fall, or perhaps as late as mid-December!

Stay Tuned!

DEAN MOSS & DEAN'S TEAM CHICAGO

KATHY'S HOME & GARDEN TIPS - NEAR DROUGHT AROUND CHICAGO AND THE MIDWEST

We had an almost near record rainfall in the spring and early summer. This was accompanied by less than normal temperatures. In my humble opinion, ”heavenly.” Now nearing the end of summer it has descended with a vengeance. Not really higher than normal but the heat usually brings big rain producing storms, not this year. Storms try to fire and except for a few times fizzle out. I’m talking mainly Chicago here. But in general it’s been very dry. Even after the wet early season we are about 4inches down from normal.

Keep the grass a little longer than usual. Do a deep water once a week. Even if we get a storm that dumps an inch of water much will run off. Some people choose to let the grass go dormant. This is fine, it will come back when we get some rain.

We are watering the garden every other day. Tomatoes like the heat, other veggies not so much. But in extreme heat, tomatoes will lose blossoms. Pick tomatoes frequently and maybe slightly under ripe. Tomatoes left on the vine can get mealy in extreme heat.

Mature trees and shrubs should get through fine with all the rain we had earlier in the year. Newly planted however need a deep, slow water twice a week during the dry times. We have a newly planted tree on our parkway. It replaced a tree the city cut down. We have been waiting SIX YEARS for this tree. Needless to say my husband is out with the root waterer twice a week.

Hanging pots and container flower dry out very quickly. You never want them to get completely dried out. You really need to water them thoroughly every day. If they get too dry the water just runs through.

With a little effort we and our lawn and garden will get through this horrendous weather.

KATHLEEN WEAVER-ZECH & DEAN'S TEAM CHICAGO
TECHNOLOGY TIPS - GET OFF THOSE UNWANTED CATALOG LISTS

Believe it or not the holiday season is approaching!  I know this because I've already started seeing Halloween candy at the grocery story which is a huge indicator, That got me to thinking about how many pieces of unwanted mail and catalogs i get every year that simply take up space and clutter my home.

I found this great site called Catalog Choice. The process of working with them is extremely simple. Think of all the unwanted mail you get - credit card offers, catalogs, donation requests, and catalogs. Once you've purchased from a company, they will mail you their sales materials until you opt out of them. Then there are those pieces you receive simply because your information has been purchased on a database.

With Catalog Choice, you can log in for a free account. Once you've logged into your account, search for the company who sent you the mail you did not wish to receive. You'll enter your opt-out information and submit direct to the company. They even have a way to opt-out of phone book delivery (yes this still happens!).

This non-profit organization then works on your behalf to make certain you remain off the mailing lists. You can keep track of their progress through your account. If you receive additional mail, notify Catalog Choice and they will follow up with the vendor to prevent future mailings.

Here's to less junk mail in all our mailboxes!

CATHY MALLERS & DEAN'S TEAM CHICAGO

THIS WEEKEND IN CHICAGO - DOG DAYS OF SUMMER BRING OUT CHICAGOANS IN DROVES!

The dog days of summer may be upon us this weekend with heat, humidity and rain but Chicagoans won’t let that stop them as the City and its neighborhoods have lined-up a weekend perfect for the dog days of summer!

Taking center stage will be the 57th annual Chicago Air and Water Show to North Avenue Beach (1600 N. Lake Shore Dr.) in the Lincoln Park neighborhood this Saturday and Sunday (9:00 a.m.-3:00 p.m.) although the show can be viewed along the lakefront from Fullerton Avenue to Oak Street. Herb Hunter will once again be the voice of the show as a wide variety of military and civilian aerial demonstration teams with daredevil pilots take it to the skies over Lake Michigan! This year’s headliners include the U.S. Navy Blue Angels, U.S. Army Parachute Team Golden Knights, U.S. Navy Parachute Team Leap Frogs and the Breitling Jet Team (new for 2015) plus many other returning acts. Don’t miss this largest FREE event of its kind!!

Returning for its 2nd year, The Great American Lobster Fest is being held at the east end of Navy Pier (600 E. Grand Ave.) in the Streeterville neighborhood on Saturday and Sunday (10:00 a.m.-10:00 p.m.) and is the Midwest’s largest lobster fest with fresh live lobster being flown in from Boston! Live music performances, family-friendly carnival games & activities, vendor shopping and cold beverages compliment this lobster fest as well as jets flying overhead from the Air & Water Show along with the Pier’s usual Saturday night fireworks. And, you don’t have to be a fan of lobster to enjoy this event as there will be many other great food options available!!

Chicago’s Little Italy neighborhood celebrates its history and heritage once again at their 10th annual Festa Italiana located at Ashland Avenue and Taylor Street this Saturday (12:00 p.m.-11:00 p.m.) and Sunday (12:00 p.m.-10:00 p.m.). This fest definitely offers something for everyone with some of the best Italian food in Chicago from longtime family-owned restaurants and neighborhood newcomers, a meatball eating contest, a grape stomping area, family-friendly activities & carnival rides, cooking demonstrations, three stages of live entertainment with Italian & Italian-American singers performing Italian and American classics, trolley tours of Little Italy and much more! Now “That’s Amore!!”

The 14th annual Glenwood Avenue Arts Fest also takes place this Saturday and Sunday (11:00 a.m.-9:00 p.m.) at Glenwood and Morse Avenues (6940 N. Glenwood Ave.) in the Roger Park neighborhood. This FREE event will feature more than 100 artists, open studios and over 40 live music acts performing on three outdoor stages as well as food and drink as you walk the cobblestone streets of the Glenwood Avenue Arts District!

Lastly, the Edison Park Fest returns to 6730 N. Olmsted Ave. in the Edison Park neighborhood this Saturday and Sunday (11:00 a.m.-11:00 p.m.). This family-friendly fest features food & beverages from local vendors, live music with performances by Wedding Banned (Saturday) and Sixteen Candles (Sunday), children’s entertainment, a craft fair in Monument Park, a business expo, Bingo from 11:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m. in the Bingo Tent, a family parade (Saturday), a dog show and bag toss tournament (both on Sunday) for an unforgettable “dog days of summer” good time!!

This weekend’s Movies in the Parks are –

Saturday

“Back to the Future” – Bosley Park (3044 S. Bonfield St.) – Bridgeport
“The Lego Movie” – Unity Playlot Park (2636 N. Kimball Ave.) – Logan Square
“Roll Bounce” – DuSable Museum of African American History (740 E. 56th Pl.) – Washington Park

Sunday

“Back to the Future” – Eckhart Park (1330 W. Chicago Ave.) – West Town

“Guardians of the Galaxy” – Jonquil Park (1001 W. Wrightwood Ave.) – Lincoln Park

“The Hunger Games Survivor Fest” – Steelworkers’ Park (East 87th at Lake Michigan) – South Chicago

BTW – the “Cross-Town Classic” is also this weekend on the South Side as the Chicago White Sox host the Chicago Cubs!

LOOK OUT – We’re Coming Out in Droves (Woof)!!

SUE MOSS & DEAN'S TEAM CHICAGO

CHICAGO NEIGHBORHOOD NEWS - LAKEVIEW, LOOP, RAVENSWOOD, EVANSTON, PORTAGE PARK

LAKEVIEW

Those of us over 30 may better understand the significance of last week's demolition of the Dunkin' Donuts at the intersection of Belmont and Clark. Long gone are the days of the punk scene meeting place that used to be the "Punkin' Donuts" parking lot. BlitzLake Capital broke ground yesterday, Wednesday 8/12, on the eight-story commercial and residential building that will include a Target store, 90 apartment units and 39 parking spaces which will greatly change the face of Central Lakeview.  

LOOP

Hyatt Centric the Loop hotel at 100 W. Monroe St. opened their new rooftop restaurant, Aire, this week on Tuesday 8/11. It joins Virgin Hotel's Cerise (203 N. Wabash Ave.) and Chicago Athletic Association's Cindy's (12 S. Michigan Ave.) as chic summertime hotel rooftop hotspots. Aire is approximately 10,000 square feet of full bar and restaurant space showcasing fabulous views of the city at a capacity of 230 people, including 100 seats, on the 24th floor of the hotel. The menu features offerings by Chef Matt Ayala who also helms Hyatt Centric's Cochon Volant restaurant on the ground floor.

RAVENSWOOD

1812 W. Montrose has been known as Beans & Bagels for nearly 21 years until yesterday's Name Change Celebration brought to you by two-year owner, Will Goodwin. If you haven't heard the news of the new name yet, we did a little investigating to find out.

EVANSTON

Design Evanston, the non-profit organization made up of designers, architects and planners for the advocacy of good design will be sponsoring a bike tour ($10/person) and a walking tour ($20/person) to Discover Evanston's Notable Places. The bike tour is scheduled for next week, Wednesday 8/19 at 6:30pm and the walking tour is next month, Wednesday 9/16 at 6:30pm. Make your reservations at event@designevantson.org to enjoy a casual 1.5 hour tour with light refreshments being provided at the end of each tour.

PORTAGE PARK

The Small Business Improvement Fund (SBIF) Program is currently accepting grant submissions for any commercial or industrial property in need of permanent repairs and remodeling within the Belmont/Cicero Tax Increment Financing (TIF) District of the Portage Park neighborhood. Grants awarded may cover up to 75% of improvement costs at maximums of $150,000 for industrial properties, $100,000 per single-tenant commercial properties, and $50,000 per owner/tenant unit with a limit of $250,000 total per multi-tenant property. Owners of small businesses or buildings have until 5:00pm Tuesday, 9/1, to submit the initial seven-page application. Follow this link to SomerCor.com to learn more about eligibility requirements and to download the SBIF Application Packet. The Portage Park Chamber of Commerce office can also be contacted to mail an application/information packet to your business or assist in completing the application. Call 773-777-2020 or email beebuilding@aol.com

CATHY MALLERS & DEAN’S TEAM CHICAGO

KATHY'S HOMES & GARDEN TIPS - THE MANY USES OF BORAX

Kills Ants. We have had an unusual spring and summer around Chicago and the upper Mid West. An extremely wet and cool spring and early summer then periods of extreme heat and dryness. Now not so hot but it continues to be extremely dry. When we have extended periods of dryness the ants frequently will come in looking for water. You usually find them in the kitchen and bath. I always in the past used those little black ant traps you get at the hardware store and that would take care of it. This year, not effective. I went online and found a DIY ant solution. And lo and behold the main ingredient is old fashioned Borax. Mix 3 tablespoons Borax with ½ cup sugar. Stir in enough water to make a thick syrup. Pour into shallow dishes and place on the floor around where you see the ants. I used deli container lids which are disposable. The first day there were at least twenty or thirty ants either in the lids or hanging around. See the ants are attracted to the sugar, they get stuck and the borax kills them. The ones that don’t get stuck take the Borax back to the nest where it kills the rest. Anyway I have not seen ants for two days. Success!! And no nasty pesticides!

Borax is a great laundry booster, deodorizer and cleaner that our Great Great Grandmothers have used since 1891! It’s the original laundry booster, add ½ to every load, color safe and it helps if you have hard water! Presoak- add 1 tablespoon to a gallon of water. Presoak at least 30 minutes. Baby clothes- we know they can be smelly. Soak in ½ cup borax and warm water, then follow with ½ cup borax and regular detergent in the wash. Delicates- use ¼ cup with 1-2 tablespoons dish detergent. Soak for twenty minutes and rinse well in cool water. Blot with a towel and lay flat to dry.

Borax freshens the garbage disposal- put in 3 tablespoons, let stand at least 15 minutes. Rinse well while the disposal is on. Toilet bowl- add ¼ cup, scrub with brush then let sit overnight, flush. Put ¼ cup in the bottom of the dishwasher, it dissolves hard water deposits and reduces spots. Carpet stains- dissolve ¼ cup in 16 ounces of water, sponge on, let sit for ½ an hour then rinse. Let dry completely then vacuum. Borax on a wet sponge is a great cleanser for the bath and kitchen. It cleans without chemicals, does not scratch and eliminates odors.

So let’s use an old cleaning solution for a chemical free solution to many household messes and odors. Also it’s an awesome Ant Killer!

KATHLEEN WEAVER-ZECH & DEAN'S TEAM CHICAGO

TECHNOLOGY TIPS - GMAIL UNDO SEND

I think we've all done this at some point - sent an email with a typo that changes the entire context of the message; sent a response that really was inappropriate; or sent a message to the wrong person. While all of these scenarios are not major faux pas, they can potentially create issues.  With Undo Send as an official option in Gmail, you can control all your messages in a smart way.

You will have to make sure that you have this featured turned on so here are some quick steps.  First, click on the gear shift and select Settings. Second scroll down to the option called Undo Send. Third, select the box if it is not already selected. Fourth, change the timeframe to 30 seconds. Finally, scroll to the bottom of the page and click on Save Changes. You are now ready to use this feature.

I recommend using 30 seconds because it's enough time to undo the send of your message. Once you click on Undo, your compose window re-opens the draft message you were creating. You can choose to wait to edit your message and it will save to your drafts. Or you can choose to make edits and resend the message with the new edits.

Next time you send an email message, know that you can now bring it back to make edits.

CATHY MALLERS & DEAN'S TEAM CHICAGO

 

SKOKIE - INCREDIBLE NEW PRICE ON AN INCREDIBLE EXECUTIVE-STYLED COLONIAL - TOP FAIRVIEW SOUTH SCHOOL!
http://www.dean-team.com/photos/chicago_homes_for_sale_by_deans_team/images/3970162/secondarythumb.aspx

Announcing a PRICE REDUCTION on 5139 Lunt Avenue, a 3,177 sq. ft., 4 full baths, 4 bedrooms with one on main floor plus many more features!  NOW MLS $674,700!!

Property information

THIS WEEKEND IN CHICAGO - GET READY FOR A “JAM-PACKED” WEEKEND!
Hopefully, you’re looking forward to this upcoming weekend because it’s going to be “jam-packed” with lots of great summer events as we head into another school year around here!

If you’re looking for a “blast from the past,” then the 20th annual Retro on Roscoe should be your choice. This event takes place in the Roscoe Village neighborhood at 2000 W. Roscoe St. (Damen Ave. & Roscoe St.) on Saturday and Sunday (12:00 p.m.-10:00 p.m.) with live music (oldies & throwbacks with popular hits too) on three stages; artisans, antique vendors, cool merchants and top restaurants serving up summer treats; a family area offering inflatables, balloon arts, face painting, rides & more; along with an Antique and Classic Car and Motorcycle Show showcasing over 50 antique, classic and muscle cars! Experience a weekend from back in the day!!

If you like “big crowds,” then the Northalsted Market Days should be your choice. This event takes place in the Lakeview neighborhood at 3190 N. Halsted St. (Halsted St. & Belmont Ave.) on Saturday and Sunday (11:00 a.m.-10:00 p.m.) and is billed as the largest street fest in the Midwest! Spanning over several city blocks, this event features a vast array of national talent on four stages, nearly 300 vendors stocked with craft food & drink, local arts & crafts, unique vendors and more!

If you like hanging-out in one of Chicago’s most popular neighborhoods, then the 13th annual Wrigleyville Summerfest should be your choice. Taking place in the Wrigleyville neighborhood at 3300 N. Seminary Ave. on Saturday (12:00 p.m.-10:00 p.m.) and Sunday (11:00 a.m.-9:00 p.m.), this event features a variety of delicious food & beverages from local vendors and restaurants; an assortment of live musical talent with the best original and cover artists the City has to offer; and a Kids Zone packed with games and other interactive happenings!

If you’re into “hot dogs,” then the Chicago Hot Dog Fest is a must for you! Taking place in the park north of the Chicago History Museum (1601 N. Clark St.) at Clark & LaSalle Streets on Saturday (11:00 a.m.-9:00 p.m.) and Sunday (11:00 a.m.-8:00 p.m.), this fest not only serves up the classic Chicago-style hot dog (Vienna Beef) but also a variety of vendors will be serving up unique specialty franks with their own special spin! A music stage and kids’ activities round out this event as you celebrate the “hot dog!!”

If “parades” are your thing, you’re in luck as the 85th Bud Billiken Parade and Picnic takes place Saturday (10:00 a.m.) at 3900 S. King Dr. (King Dr. & 39th St.) in the Bronzeville neighborhood which focuses on getting the kids ready for school! Post-parade, Washington Park (southeast of 51st & King Dr.) will host picnics, entertainment, school supply giveaways and much more!

Finally, if you’re anxiously awaiting the beginning of “football season,” then the Chicago Bears Meijer Family Fest is waiting for you this Saturday (10:00 a.m. gates open) at Soldier Field (1410 S. Museum Campus Dr.) in the South Loop. Enjoy a Bears Scrimmage, alumni autographs, live music, kid-friendly activities, giveaways and more!

This weekend’s Movies in the Parks are –

Saturday

“Dr. Seuss’ How The Grinch Stole Christmas”Schreiber Park (1552 W. Schreiber Ave.) – Rogers Park

“The Goonies”Edgebrook Park (6525 N. Hiawatha Ave.) – Forest Glen

“Selma”Ellis Park (707 E. 37th St.) – Douglas

Ready or Not, The Jam-Packed Weekend Awaits You!  Will I See You Out There?

SUE MOSS & DEAN'S TEAM CHICAGO

CHICAGO NEIGHBORHOOD NEWS - LOOP, LINCOLN PARK, OAK PARK, OLD TOWN, NORWOOD PARK

LOOP

More than 30 Chicago students, ranging from elementary to high school age, assembled at Daley Plaza yesterday, Wednesday 8/5, to protest the plan to push back school start times by an hour for 70+ CPS schools this coming school year. To protect cutting class sizes or laying off teachers, CPS' plan is to save money by consolidating the number of buses and drivers by having some schools start at 9:00am instead of 8:00am with classes running until as late as 4:30pm. Students expressed their concerns that the time change will impact their abilities to participate in extracurricular activities, jobs, homework, and caring for younger siblings whose time schedules will now differ with theirs. They also worry about their safety as the time shift will force them to travel at later hours if they are participating in after school sports and activities, especially those who live or travel through less safe areas.  

LINCOLN PARK

Tomorrow, Friday 8/6, is your last chance this summer to try a Drop in Bubble Soccer session at DePaul University's Wish Fields (900 W. Belmont Ave.), brought to you by Players Sport & Social Group and Battle Balls. There's still time to register online to secure a spot for $15 or it will be $20 on site IF there are spaces still available. Two sessions will be held at 6:30 - 7:30pm and 7:30 - 8:30pm. If you're not familiar with Bubble Soccer, you're in for a treat. It's 5-on-5 soccer game BUT every player is wearing an inflated hamster ball-like contraption over their heads and torsos so that taking control of the ball by means of head-on-collision is safe and expected. By the way, it's free to be a spectator at this spectacle of an event.

OAK PARK

August 28th is the deadline for submissions to Oak Park Historic Preservation Commission's 2015 Historic Preservation Awards Program. Any resident, owner, tenant, or member of local boards, commissions, and preservation and historical societies can nominate a single-family residence, apartment building, commercial building, public/institutional building or religious structure to receive an award for restoration, rehabilitation, addition/new construction, or adaptive use. It is not necessary for the project to be located in a historical district. It is specified that projects should have been created within the past five years and located within the boundaries of the Village of Oak Park. Follow the link to submit nominations online, or report to Village Hall at 123 Madison St. for a nomination form. Call 708-358-5417 or email historicpreservation@oak-park.us for more information.

OLD TOWN

Old Town Art Center (1763 N. North Park Ave.) is debuting the new exhibit, Visions & Visionaries, with a reception this Sunday, 8/9, from 2:00 - 5:00pm. More than 24 artists' work will be on display to showcase Old Town's artistic community and history. The exhibit will run from 8/9 through 9/2 with Gallery Hours on Tuesdays through Fridays, 10:00am - 5:00pm, and Saturdays 10:00am - 1:00pm.

NORWOOD PARK

Resurrection College Prep High School (7500 W. Talcott Ave.) is already preparing for their annual Fall Craft Fair in November. According to DNAinfo.com there's an open call to artisans interested in showcasing and selling their wares for the November 14th event. Benefits from the Craft Fair will go directly to  the all-girl Catholic school with an impressive collection of 180+ arts and crafts displays. Call Carol Marchetti at 773-775-6616 ext. 112 or email cmarchetti@reshs.org for more information.

CATHY MALLERS & DEAN’S TEAM CHICAGO

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