All posts by shannonlongworth

Maritime Day marks beginning of Chicago boating season

By Shannon Longworth
Medill Reports

Chicagoans celebrated the Merchant Marines as well as the start of summer with a blessing of ships and recreational boats on Wednesday at Navy Pier.

With its long stretch of lakefront property, Chicago has many docks and slips for boat owners. And some of those owners are joining a rental market that has developed over the past few years, beyond the usual charter companies offering planned excursions. Services like Boatsetter — a company that works like Airbnb or Uber for boats —are offering residents and visitors new ways to enjoy Lake Michigan.

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Ride-sharing drivers protest for better pay

By Shannon Longworth
Medill Reports

Uber and Lyft drivers did a work stoppage today in major cities nationwide. In Chicago, they protested not only for better pay, but also for a cap on the number of ride-sharing drivers.

The 24-hour stoppage comes ahead of Uber’s initial public offering on  Friday.

Photo at top: Uber drivers demonstrate in Grant Park.(Shannon Longworth/MEDILL)

Spring snow takes Chicago by surprise

By Shannon Longworth
Medill Reports

More than two inches of snow on Saturday interrupted spring for Chicagoans.

So the question arises: is such extreme weather at unusual times of the year related to climate change?

According to National Weather Service meteorologist Lee Carlaw, there’s no way to tie an individual weather incident to a larger climactic change without seeing a trend over years or decades. Continue reading

Stopping on the Mag Mile proves costly for ride-sharing drivers

By Shannon Longworth
Medill Reports

Uber and Lyft drivers are facing hefty fines for violating the no-stopping, no-standing regulation along North Michigan Avenue.

The law applies to all vehicles driving on the street, according to Chicago Police. However, ride-hailing drivers are specifically being ticketed because their apps so frequently tell them to drop off and pick up passengers in front of the many stores along the strip.

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Toddlers engage more with print books than with ebooks, study says

By Shannon Longworth
Medill Reports

Although many parents choose to read to their toddlers from ebooks, a study published this month in the journal Pediatrics says print books are a better option for a child’s development.

In the study, researchers evaluated child engagement through their levels of verbalization and collaboration, which are two critical pieces of the learning process. Ebooks are popular for their convenience, but the study showed that tablets served as a distraction. Parents spent more time explaining how to use the device than they did reading the story displayed on it.

Photo at top: Families join a weekly story-time event at Women and Children First bookstore in Andersonville. (Shannon Longworth/MEDILL)