Lunar New Year celebrations kick off in Chicago

By Beth Lawrence

Lunar New Year, also called Chinese New Year, is one of the most celebrated holidays in China. The Chinese Fine Arts Society is bringing that celebration to Chicago with the city’s second annual Chinese New Year celebration.

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Beyond the Box Score brings ‘The Female Voice in Sports Media’ to NU

By Beth Werge

If anyone is capable of leading a groundbreaking discussion about the challenges of being a woman in sports media, it’s Christine Brennan. Medill and Northwestern University Athletics held the fifth installment of their Beyond the Box Score series this week, bringing USA Today columnist Brennan (BSJ80, MSJ81), CNN’s Rachel Nichols (BSJ95), Fox Sports’ Pam Oliver and ESPN’s Cassidy Hubbarth (BSJ07) to campus Tuesday night. Continue reading

Child hunger makes learning difficult, especially in harsh winter

By Emily Hoerner

For Chicago’s food insecure children, this season’s blistering cold temperatures may present additional barriers to learning in the classroom.

When weather is especially harsh, people turn to food services like pantries, soup kitchens and shelters more frequently, said Jim Conwell, communications director at the Greater Chicago Food Depository. Continue reading

How about them Apples?

New genetically modified apples don’t brown when bruised

By Shanley Chien

It may take a few years for bins of Arctic apples to show up in grocery stores.

But the U.S. Department of Agriculture approved two types of these genetically modified apples that don’t turn brown when sliced. The flesh of the fruit stays a glowing white.

Canada-based Okanagan Specialty Foods specializes in agriculture biotechnology and created the genetically engineered Arctic Granny Smith and Arctic Golden apples.

“All we’ve done is reduce the expression of a single enzyme; there are no novel proteins in Arctic fruit and their nutrition and composition is equivalent to their conventional counterparts,” said Okanagan Specialty Fruit’s chief executive officer Neal Carter in a prepared statement.  Continue reading

Love, peace and soul — on gig posters

By Antoinette Isama

Chicago’s nightlife scene peddles its wares through posters that are pasted on poles, thumbtacked on cork boards and attached to messages on the Internet. It’s a must that these posters pop; they are vital to drawing a crowd for live performers and shindigs alike.

A monthly dance party at Wicker Park’s Double Door has been practicing that art of attraction through its posters since its first night on the turntables.

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Sorry exporters, a strong dollar is golden in U.S.

By Lei Xuan

“The world is in a currency war,” says A. Gary Shilling, president of the New Jersey-based consultants A. Gary Shilling & Co.

His reasoning is simple and global: “Many central banks are chopping interest rates to push their currencies down. They all hope to spur exports to offset internal weakness.”

A moderate depreciation of currency is, indeed, especially good for countries who rely heavily on exports. A weaker currency makes export goods cheaper in foreign markets. Continue reading

VIDEO: Businesses adjust to greater consumer expectations

By Andrew Fowler

Now more than ever American consumers have a lot of influence on retailers and they’re not afraid to use it. According to a trend report from Chicago-based analysts at Mintel,  consumers now expect speed and convenience on-demand thanks to the internet. Proper Suit, a custom menswear retailer, is one Chicago business that is changing with the times.

According to the report, in addition to rising consumer expectations, shoppers are becoming more aware of their rights and corporate misbehavior. In addition, wearable technology is expected to be a bigger trend in 2015.

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Fed minutes: ‘many’ favor delaying interest rate hike

By Lucy Ren

The majority of the participants at the January Federal Open Market Committee meeting leaned towards delaying the interest rate hike, according to the FOMC’s January meeting minutes released on Wednesday.

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VIDEO: The Illinois Clean Jobs Coalition aims to improve state environmental standards

By Julie Woon

Mayor Rahm Emanuel is teaming up with the new Illinois Clean Jobs Coalition to urge passage of legislation that would improve environmental standards in the state. The group says 32,000 jobs a year could be created in Illinois by increasing clean and efficient energy.

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VIDEO: Holiday lures young adults to church but ministry makes them stay

By Meg Rauch

A Pew Research Study says that one-third of adults under 30 in the U.S. do not identify with any religion. A Catholic Church in Chicago is bringing more young people back to mass and getting them involved in their faith.  Continue reading