Free Street youth debate on stage: All lives matter or no lives matter

"Track 13" performance

By Kate Morrissey One year ago Tuesday, Deonta Mackey was shot and killed by an off-duty police officer in the Pullman neighborhood when he tried to rob the officer at gunpoint at a gas station. “Track 13,” a play created by a youth ensemble composed of members from the Young Fugitives ensemble and members from […]

Measles vaccination rates at public schools lowest in poorest areas

Location of low measles vaccinations

By Emily Hoerner Less than 90 percent of students at 14 Chicago Public Schools were vaccinated for measles last school year, according to data by the Illinois State Board of Education. Nearly all of those schools are located in low-income neighborhoods on the city’s South and West sides. Francis M. McKay Elementary in the Chicago […]

Restaurant week offerings limited to affluent neighborhoods

By Meg Rauch This year’s Restaurant Week in Chicago features over 250 restaurants, but nearly all of them are in the city’s more affluent neighborhoods on the North Side. But some restaurants, like Pilsen’s Nightwood, are hoping to bring more diners to the city’s South Side and change where Chicagoans choose to eat.

Cuts shield Acco Brands from economic headwinds

By Meredith Wilson Acco Brands Corp. saw fourth quarter profit fall 12.5 percent because of a strengthening U.S. dollar and retail consolidation, but exceeded analyst estimates for the quarter. Cost-cutting measures throughout the year led the company to post an 18.8 percent rise in profit for 2014. Lake Zurich-based Acco, one of the world’s largest […]

NFL player brings mental health services to youth

By Meg Rauch   Awareness and treatment for mental health issues can be an unpopular subject among youth.  Chicago Bears player Brandon Marshall is looking to help young people in Chicago cope with these problems by sharing his own struggle with borderline personality disorder.

VIDEO: Humboldt Park residents save feral cats, reduce population

By Beth Lawrence According to the ASPCA there are an estimated 70 million stray cats in the United States. In the winter, stray cats need more energy to grow thicker coats and gain weight, but their food sources are more limited. One Chicago resident is helping these cats, but it’s not by helping them get […]

Composers transform nature’s symphony into songs of the wild

By Sara Freund Leafless trees stretch their branches toward the gray sky like ageless giants at the Chicago Botanic Garden . The trees appear frozen still, but they are warriors. Some species of oak trees sense when they’re under attack – they detect the saliva of chewing insects and retaliate.  The oaks release chemicals to warn their neighbors […]

Playwriting Competitions bring bold new voices to Chicago theaters

Red Theater's Red Hamlet

By Elizabeth Elving The theater is a place to ask questions, and the writers in this year’s Young Playwrights Festival weren’t afraid to tackle some of the biggest ones head-on. The four winning entries of Pegasus Theatre Chicago’s annual high school competition just closed their run at Chicago Dramatists in River West under the title […]

High Wi-Fi Demand Promising for New Library Program

By Phoebe Tollefson Rebecca De Santiago takes her daughter, Itzel, to Pilsen’s Lozano Public Library after school to help her with homework. They need a computer with Internet access and the library has it – for two hours a day. “Es un lujo con nosotras,” De Santiago said of Internet access. “Como somos madres solteras, […]