Evanston IL Beach Tokens Sale Starts

The Evanston IL beach tokens sale has started on April 1st and can be purchased at the Morton Civic Center, 2100 Evanston IL Beach Tokens Sale StartsRidge Ave., or any of the five community centers. Evanston IL has 6 beaches that include a boat launch and a dog beach. The beaches are wonderful to visit, there are lifeguards on duty and the sand is cleaned daily. This is very exciting to residents because living in Evanston IL in the warmer weather is truly paradise. Here is some information provided by the City of Evanston.

A season token or daily pass is required for beach admission during operating hours. One token or daily pass is required per person. A season token is valid for the entire beach season. The season begins on Sat., May 28. From May 28 through June 3, beach hours are 11 a.m.- 6 p.m. From June 4 through Sept. 5 (Labor Day), beach hours are 10:30 a.m. – 7:30 p.m.

Starting on April 1, season tokens may be purchased weekdays, 8:30 a.m. – 5 p.m. at the Morton Civic Center, 2100 Ridge Ave., and at local community centers during their office hours (Robert Crown, Chandler-Newberger, Fleetwood-Jourdain, Levy Senior Center, and Evanston Ecology Center). Starting on May 28, tokens may also be purchased at the Dempster Street Beach office between the hours of 11 a.m. – 6 p.m. Cash, personal checks and credit cards are accepted.

Free beach days for Evanston residents will be held at Clark Street Beach on Mondays from July 11 through August 29.

Daily beach admission is $8, adult and $6, child age 1-11.

Fee assistance is available to qualified Evanston residents for season beach tokens, as well as for other Parks, Recreation and Community Services Department classes and programs. You may apply for fee assistance at the Morton Civic Center. Please call 847-448-8237 in advance to determine which documents to bring.

A limited number of free beach tokens are made available through the City of Evanston’s Recreation Division and various community outreach agencies/organizations to Evanston residents who meet income guidelines. For information on free beach tokens or the list of participating community outreach agencies/organizations, please contact the Parks, Recreation and Community Services Department at 847-448-8237.

The Mayor’s Super Summer Recreation Program includes free beach admission for Evanston teens through a 10-punch pass. Teens age 13-18 years who may not otherwise be able to go to the beach may pick up a pass for free beach visits at community centers and the main Evanston Public Library. Proof of residency is required. Please call 3-1-1 (847-448-4311) for more information.

I hope to see you walking on the beach this Summer in Evanston IL

Evanston To Update Street Cleaning Schedule Avoid Tickets

This is to help you avoid tickets and towing, Evanston is to update the street cleaning schedule and add new signs beginning on May 2nd. The City Evanston ILOf Evanston says:

– New parking signage is being installed throughout Evanston to reflect the City’s updated street cleaning schedule. Parking enforcement for the 2016 season will begin on Monday, May 2 to allow for installation of the new signage.

Residents are asked to abide by the 2016 street cleaning map and schedule, which are available online at cityofevanston.org/streetcleaning. Residents will also receive the Public Works Agency’s “Evanston Life Spring 2016” publication in the mail, which provides the updated map and schedule.

As part of the City’s commitment to continuous improvement, a year-long analysis of street cleaning operations was conducted in 2015. The objective was to determine how to most effectively clean the streets and then clearly communicate the necessary parking regulations. Many community members provided detailed input and suggestions through a survey. The feedback helped form an updated operations plan, which was approved by City Council.

What’s New

  • Signage – New street signs are being installed, which list the specific days and times parking is restricted. (i.e. 1st Thursday of Month, 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.)
  • Shorter Window for Parking Restrictions – Residential streets with parking on both sides will now be cleaned from either 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. or from noon to 4 p.m.
  • Residential Schedule – Most residential streets will now be cleaned once per month. Signs being posted at the beginning and end of each block will provide the specific day and time frame the street will be cleaned.
  • Primary Schedule – Streets designated as Primary Routes will be cleaned twice per month, rather than every two weeks. This minor adjustment allows signage to communicate specific cleaning days.
  • Extended Season – The street cleaning season was extended in early spring and late fall to clear debris and leaves, weather permitting. The season is now March 1 through December 15. Parking enforcement for the 2016 season will begin May 2 to allow for signage installation.
  • Residential Special Zone 4 “S” Areas – A new residential street cleaning zone was created to provide additional cleaning for high density areas in south Evanston. Residents who live in the Residential Special Zone 4 “S” areas according to the map and who wish to receive text or email notifications for street cleaning should sign up for the “Residential Streets – Special Zone 4 ‘S’ Areas” list for residential street cleaning notifications, and the “Primary Routes – Zone 4” list for primary route (main roads) notifications.

What’s the Same

  • Schedule for Downtown and Streets with Parking on Only One Side – The new signs being posted will look different, but parking habits won’t have to change.
  • Text Alerts – Text message and email notifications to remind residents of street cleaning continue to be available. Residents who previously signed up for text/email notifications for street cleaning and live at the same address do not need to take any action, with the exception of those living in new Residential Special Zone 4 “S” areas (see above). Community members can find their street cleaning zone and sign up for alerts at cityofevanston.org/streetcleaning, or by calling/texting 847-448-4311. Text and email notifications for the 2016 season will begin when signage installation is completed in April.

City Of Evanston Offering Free Rain Barrels

The City of Evanston has always had innovative thinking and now we hear some excellent news. Evanston and the Metropolitan Water Reclamation district is to Evanston ILoffer free rain barrels and even deliver them to you in an effort to help our environment by letting people collect rainwater to use for watering plants and save on the use of public water. I quote the City of Evanston on this issue,

The City of Evanston has partnered with the Metropolitan Water Reclamation District (MWRD) to offer free rain barrels and free rain barrel delivery to eligible Evanston residential property owners.

Rain barrels are rainwater collection systems installed outside of residences and connected to downspouts to collect stormwater runoff from rooftops. Rainwater can be collected for lawn and garden watering, plant watering, and car and window washing. Collecting rainwater and using it for these purposes decreases the amount of water that ends up in Evanston’s stormwater sewer system, which can help decrease the likelihood of flooding.

Residential property owners located in Evanston are eligible for the program, including:

  • Single-family homeowners
  • Property owners/administrators of multi-unit residential buildings (rental properties and condominium buildings)

Each single-family and multi-unit residential building may order up to four free rain barrels. It may take up to 12 weeks for rain barrel(s) to be delivered. Commercial properties in Evanston are not eligible for free rain barrels, but may purchase them online at enviroworld.us/mwrd.

To learn more about the residential rain barrel program and to order a rain barrel(s), visit cityofevanston.org/rainbarrel.

Rain Barrel & Rain Garden Classes
The City of Evanston, in partnership with the Evanston Ecology Center and local landscape contractors, is offering free rain barrel and rain garden classes to help answer questions related to the program and general property stormwater management practices.

Classes will take place at the Evanston Ecology Center, 2024 McCormick Blvd., as part of the Evanston Environmental Association’s Livable Landscapes Program:

  • Thursday, April 28, 6 p.m. to 8 p.m.
  • Thursday, May 26, 6 p.m. to 8 p.m.

Community members can register for the class (Class # 113149) online at cityofevanston.org/register, or by calling/texting 847-448-4311. Both sessions are open to the public and no prior experience or knowledge is required or necessary.

For questions, please call/text 847-448-4311. For convenience, residents may simply dial 3-1-1 in Evanston.

Evanston IL Downtown Rated In Top Ten!

Ask anyone who is an Evanston IL Resident and they will tell you how much they love the town and the downtown area. There is something for everyone, so much Evanston ILgreat dining choices, excellent public transportation Via the Metra and “EL” trains and wonderful entertainment. I have lived in Evanston IL since 1979 and it only gets better. It is no surprise that Evanston IL and it’s Downtown is so highly rated. As a Realtor working for Coldwell Banker Evanston we are seeing more and more people interested in loving here and feel very enthusiastic about our town.

I want to quote an article on this from the City of Evanston web site.

Downtown Evanston has been ranked the 10th best downtown in the country according to Livability.com. Dozens of criteria were mulled over in the process of selecting downtown Evanston as 10th best downtown in the country, including growth rates, home values, educational attainment, and area amenities.

Areas with new construction ranked highly because cranes are often a great sign of economic and cultural recovery. The Top 10 list showcases a range of downtowns in terms of size, style and nature. Evanston’s newly condoized city center was identified as being one of America’s top revitalized downtown landscapes.

Evanston’s downtown distinguishes itself from other typical Chicago suburbs with its high concentration of cultural attractions such as theaters, music venues and bars. Galleries, concert halls and museums in downtown Evanston provide a rich cultural scene. Nearly 100 cafés and restaurants provide diners with everything from grab-and-go lunches to elegant five-course meals in historic buildings and al fresco sidewalk cafés. Nearby beaches on Lake Michigan, paved trails, and a collection of parks give residents plenty of opportunities to stay active and enjoy the outdoors.

Downtown Evanston’s mix of contemporary condo buildings (nearly 1,200 new condominium units since 2000) and post-modern office buildings provide an appealing aesthetic and help build the skyline, while a combination of transportation options make it easy for the more than 10,000 people employed in downtown Evanston to get to and from work.

A high percentage of those in the so called “creative class” are attracted to Downtown Evanston, including artists, engineers, technology experts and researchers. Other positive features include the close proximity of Northwestern University and the view of Lake Michigan, the highly walkable and bikeable environment, the busy nightlife, and thriving businesses.

Livability.com found that a large number of well-educated and highly talented young people are moving into downtown areas, raising the labor force and attracting the attention of businesses. The best downtowns are capitalizing on this shift, offering young professionals modern living accommodations and a full slate of amenities, including bike paths, nearby grocery stores, and an assortment of entertainment options.

The mix of urban sophistication and suburban relaxation, along with social and economic diversity found in downtown Evanston make it a Top 10 Best Downtown.

Evanston IL 311 Hits 5 Year Anniversary

Evanston IL 311 Hits 5 Year Anniversary

The Evanston 311 service is really valuable for finding out information based requests from the city of Evanston. I have called to ask questions about parking, snow removal, almost anything you can think of. They are very helpful and will answer your questions right away.

Evanston 311 maintains a 10-person staff, including four original staff members and two bilingual (English/Spanish) staff. Annual service requests have more than doubled since Evanston 311 was launched, from 16,840 in 2011 to 35,246 in 2015.

Evanston 311

In addition to dialing 3-1-1, Evanston community members may now contact 311 by texting 847-448-4311, visiting cityofevanston.org/311, downloading the “Evanston 311” mobile app on the App Store or Google Play, or connecting with Evanston 311 on Twitter and Facebook. Evanston 311 staff also engage with residents and visitors at community events throughout the year.

The City of Evanston started using a new emergency notification system on February 1, 2011. This service allows you to sign up to get emergency alerts on your cell phone, work phone, text message, e-mail, home phone, and more.
Manage my emergency notifications

Evanston IL has become such a well organized town that people just love. We get so many requests from folks who are interested in learning about this town and what is offered, the population of Evanston is really going up because there is so much to offer.

Evanston has 6 public beaches that include a dog beach and a boat launch. A wonderful downtown with easy access to public transportation via the Metra or “EL” trains that is steps away from the downtown. There are so many fantastic places to dine, you can find every type of food you would ever want.

I have been an Evanston resident since 1979 and just love living here. It only gets better when the Summer starts.

Evanston Honors Dr. Martin Luther King Jr

Evanston Honors Dr. Martin Luther King January 16 through the 25th. Dr. King spoke in Evanston IL at the Beth Emet Synagogue in 1958. I want to quote a beautiful article from the Tablet that was published January 14, 2015.

. Martin Luther King, Jr. “In 1958, a year before I was born, Martin Luther King Jr. spoke at Beth Emet The Free Synagogue, the Reform congregation in Evanston, IL., where I am now a member. He was invited by Beth Emet’s then-rabbi, David Polish, to kick off a series of events featuring “distinguished personalities in the religious, educational, and entertainment world.” King spoke about the state of civil rights at the time, calling for social action and change. Tickets were $1.75.

Just a few years later, in 1963, the year that King made his famous “I Have a Dream” speech in Washington, my parents moved from Philadelphia to Winnetka, Ill., a village five miles north of Beth Emet. That year, a rally to protest plans for the building of a whites-only residence was taking place in nearby Deerfield. My father, a Jewish businessman who was not then affiliated with Beth Emet or any synagogue, had been moved by King’s mission to end racial discrimination and segregation. Social action was my father’s religion. He attended that rally, and for reasons likely related to giving my mother a break on a Saturday morning (she had just given birth to my baby brother), he brought me along. I was 4 years old.

The rally was held by members of the Congress of Racial Equality. According to the Deerfield Review, 50 members had marched from Morton Grove to Deerfield to Pear Tree Park, where 150 people gathered to protest the village of Deerfield, which was trying to block construction of integrated housing in the park. Clergy from the nearby Congregational Church and St. Gregory’s Episcopal Church spoke, as well as the reverend from Pilgrim Congregational Church in North Carolina. It was a mixed-race, mixed-faith affair.

I remember wondering why my father had taken me to a park, as he often did, but we weren’t near the swings or slide. Instead, my father reached for my hand and all the people there formed a circle. I looked up at him and his eyes were fixed on the crowd. A brown-skinned man took my other hand and I looked up at my father again for translation. Silence was his approval. My little-girl fingers warmed in two strong men’s hands. Then the circle began to sway and voices began to sing:

We shall overcome.
We shall overcome.
We shall overcome
Someday.”

Here is a news release from the City Of Evanston:

EVANSTON, ILLINOIS – Evanston community members, residents and visitors are encouraged to celebrate the life of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. throughout the city beginning Saturday, January 16 through Monday, January 25.

To kick off the celebration on January 16, the City of Evanston invites everyone to attend the “Day of Celebration Honoring the Legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.” beginning at noon at the Fleetwood-Jourdain Community Center, located at 1655 Foster St. This event will pay tribute to Dr. King through music, dance and excerpts from his speeches.

The day promises to be inspiring and entertaining, with many special guest artists and esteemed speakers. This event is presented by Fleetwood-Jourdain Theatre and Fleetwood-Jourdain Community Center. Admission is free and open to the public.

Other events taking place during the month include the Evanston Public Library’s “11 Months” Wrap Up Celebration, a candlelight vigil at Northwestern University, Y.O.U’s 10th annual “Diverse Communities United” event, and much more.

For details about MLK Day events happening throughout Evanston, visit cityofevanston.org/mlk or call/text 847-448-4311. For convenience, residents may simply dial 3-1-1 in Evanston.

Spike Lee’s Chi-Raq be shown Jan 16 at 4 p.m in Evanston

Chi-Raq

Chi-Raq

Spike Lee’s controversial new film Chi-Raq will be shown a week from Saturday in Evanston. There is much violence in parts of Chicago and Spike Lee has made a film in sort of satire format that addresses this issue in his own way.

Members of the community are invited to a screening and discussion of Spike Lee’s latest film, the controversial “Chi-Raq.”

The event will be held on Saturday, Jan. 16 at 4 p.m. at the Fleetwood-Jourdain Community Center, 1655 Foster St. in Evanston.

Linda Gates, Head of Voice at Northwestern University’s Department of Theatre, who has directed and translated “Lysistrata,” the Aristophanes play on which the movie is based, will present opening remarks.

The discussion after the film will be led by Lesley Williams of the Evanston Public Library.

“Chi-Raq” has an MPAA rating of R and no one under 17 years of age will be admitted without a parent or guardian. Doors will open at 3 p.m.

Come watch this film and make your own decision. Is it good or not? Let us know what you think after you view the movie for free.

Evanston IL First Night Celebration NYE 2015

Evanston IL has a wonderful celebration called First Night. It happens on New Years Eve and really is well organized and just so much fun to attend. First Night Evanston is a non-profit organization that is made Evanston First Night 2015possible by the generous support of our sponsors. There is so many different things to do in such a small area and really makes Evanston IL shine. To quote the First Night and their description.

“It’s a great Evanston New Year’s Eve celebration that brings together a great community. You’ll experience an incredible range of music, dance, poetry and more from some of the world’s finest artists, many who live right here in Evanston. It’s a family friendly event too, featuring an afternoon of exciting musical and variety performances geared to families and young children as well as a teenage battle of the bands and a teen improv performance in the evening.

Performance venues include some fantastic acoustical spaces in some of Evanston’s greatest old classic houses of worship. Evanston is an eclectic, diverse community that celebrates the many different elements that come together to make a uniquely cozy community. We love creativity. We love community. We love each other. And First Night Evanston is a party where we can come together and celebrate with everyone who shares our inclusive vision and our love of music and fun. So bring the family and make a night of it! Enjoy a fine pre-or post-show meal and libations at any of Evanston’s excellent dining establishments. Don’t miss the last great event of the year.’

If you are looking for a great time with something for the whole family, I suggest giving Evanston First Night a try. I bet you will really enjoy the event and want to attend again. This party is well organized and has so many different and unique aspects to it.

Evanston first night map

Evanstons First Night

Nutcracker On Ice 2015 Evanston IL

The Nutcracker on Ice 2015 in Evanston IL at the Robert Crown Center will be starting on December 11th and will run through the 13th. I recommend Evanston IL Nutcracker on ice seeing this wonderful event and I would get tickets right away because it will sell out. The local acting and ice skating skills are so interesting and this is something to take your whole family to see. The tickets only cost $9 and it is well worth the price of admission. The people train intensely for this production and that is why the Evanston IL production of the Nutcracker on ice is a talked about event and one of the most popular of the holiday season.

I want to quote the City Of Evanston on their press release,

“The Nutcracker on Ice,” Robert Crown Community Center’s beloved winter ice show, will celebrate its 41st year entertaining families with four performances this holiday season.

Two matinees and two evening performances of the special holiday show, performed by Robert Crown Center ice skating school students and competitive figure skaters, will be held the weekend of December 11-13, 2015. Show times are Friday, December 11 at 7:30 p.m.; Saturday, December 12 at 2:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.; and Sunday, December 13 at 2:30 p.m.

To celebrate the 41st anniversary, every 41st person who attends a performance will receive a free pass to a public skate session at Robert Crown Center.

“The Nutcracker on Ice” features hundreds of skaters of all ages telling the familiar tale of Clara and her musical holiday adventures. Exquisite costumes, Tchaikovsky’s familiar music, and exciting special effects bring the characters to life, making this the perfect family show to spread the holiday spirit.

Tickets are $9 for general seating and $10 for reserved seating. Group discounts are available. General seating tickets are available online at cityofevanston.org/crown. General and reserved tickets may be purchased in advance at Robert Crown Center or at the door, as well as by phone with a major credit card at 847-448-8258.

Robert Crown Community Center and Ice Complex is located at 1701 Main St., Evanston. For more information, please call/text 847-448-4311.

This is a video from the 2014 production of the Evanston Nutcracker on Ice the 40th anniversary.

Evanston Art Center Winter Arts & Crafts Expo

Evanston Art Center Winter Arts & Crafts Expo

The Evanston Art Center has started its 12th annual winter arts and crafts expo at the new location at 1717 Central Street in Evanston IL 60201. The hours are 9AM to 10PM Monday through Thursday and Friday 9AM to 6PM and weekends 9AM to 4PM. The handmade art work is amazing and one of a kind. Yesterday we went shopping and browsing and were very impressed. I want to quote the Evanston Art Center in their write up on the event.

The Evanston Art Center’s 12th Annual Winter Arts & Crafts EXPO features original, handmade works of jewelry, ceramics, fiber, metal, glass, painting, photography, mixed-media and more. All proceeds from the EXPO sale will benefit EAC’s ongoing exhibition, scholarship, and outreach programs. Based on enthusiastic community support, our 12th year will run for 30 days and represent approximately 100 artists.

The preview party held on Friday, November 21st was a huge success! Click here to see images from the event.

Student Expo opens on Saturday, December 6th from 10 a.m. – 4 p.m.; Jewelry Fest on Saturday, December 13th from 10 am – 4 pm; Mens’ Shopping Day, Saturday, December 20th from 10 am – 4 pm.  The last shopping day will be December 22nd.

Dates and times:
EXPO Sale runs from November 22 through December 22
Open Monday through Saturday 10 am – 4 pm, Sundays 12 pm – 4 pm

Evanston Art Center Winter Arts & Crafts Expo

Every piece is handmade by a local artist

Evanston Art Center Winter Arts & Crafts Expo

Smart shoppers

Evanston Art Center Winter Arts & Crafts Expo

These ceramic coasters were really interesting

Evanston Art Center Winter Arts & Crafts Expo