Tag Archives: Chicago Park District

Section of Northerly Island trail languishes in disrepair

(CHICAGO) A portion of the trail circling Northerly Island remains closed more than a year after waves from Lake Michigan caused erosion damage — and the Chicago Park District can’t say when fixes will be made, the Chicago Sun-Times is reporting.

Waves crashing over the east side of the park damaged several hundred feet of the path. Earth underneath the path was washed away and parts of the pavement are also damaged.

A plan to fix the trail was created by the Army Corps of Engineers and handed over to the Chicago Park District to implement, according to a spokeswoman for the Corps.

The park district would not say when the fixes would be carried out or what’s taking so long.

The plans “are currently under review,” park district spokeswoman Jessica Maxey-Faulkner said in an email. “I have no further information at this time.”

A series of signs and large yellow concrete barriers are in place to keep pedestrians off the damaged section of trail.

Juanita Irizarry, executive director of Friends of the Parks, says her group hasn’t been involved in the process.

“We’ve had the same questions about when it will open and gotten the same responses,” Irizarry said Thursday. “I’m not sure if anybody is taking it as a super high priority at this point. It should be a high priority. But it doesn’t seem like a lot of attention is being paid to it.”

Friends of the Parks is a nonprofit organization that works to preserve, protect, improve, and promote the use of Chicago parks and open spaces.

A group from Friends of the Parks meets informally and privately with representatives of the park district every month to discuss issues, and Irizarry said she plans to raise concerns about Northerly Island at their next meeting.

The path — which meanders through rolling hills and encircles a 5-acre lagoon — has become a popular spot for runners, bikers and walkers since it opened in September of 2015.

The park cost $9.7 million to build, mostly from federal funding, and lies on part of a 91-acre peninsula that used to be home to Meigs Field.

Weekend A-Jenda: October 7th – October 9th

Click Here for Weekend Traffic Projects
Click Here for Weekend CTA Travel Alerts

The Chicago Marathon

Date: Sunday, October 9
Time: First wave begins at 7:30 a.m.
Location: 29 Neighborhoods in Chicago



No parking zones along the course will be enforced beginning at 1:00 a.m. on Sunday, October 9. Please look for no parking signs in your area for full details. Street closures along the route will occur between 7 a.m. and 3 p.m. The roads in Grant Park will be closed longer. City streets will re-open promptly as the final runners pass through (at a 15-minute mile pace). The Chicago Police Department will be responsible for closing and re-opening streets, they will do so in a manner ensuring runner and spectator safety. Please follow their instructions when approaching streets on the course. Do NOT attempt to block the race course at any time.

Check out this interactive closure map from the Chicago Tribune.

Viewing areas are designated near CTA rail stations at 10 points along the marathon route for those interested in following the progress of the race:

First Viewing Area – Grand (Red Line) Station – Miles #1, #3 and #12. Board a Red Line train and exit at Grand Avenue.

Second Viewing Area – Monroe (Red Line) Station –Mile #2. Board a Red Line train and exit at Monroe Street.

Third Viewing Area – Chicago (Red Line) Station – Miles #3.5 and #11.5.  Board a Red Line train and exit at Chicago. Walk three blocks west to LaSalle Street (Mile 3.5) and four blocks west to Wells Street (Mile 11.5).

Fourth Viewing Area – Clark/Division (Red Line) Station – Miles #4 and #11. Board a Red Line train and exit at LaSalle Street (Mile 4). Walk four blocks east to Wells Street (Mile 11)

Fifth Viewing Area – Addison (Red Line) Station – Mile #7.75.  Board a Red Line train and exit at Addison. Walk four blocks east to Broadway.

Sixth Viewing Area – Sedgwick (Brown Line) Station – Mile #10.25.  Board a Brown Line train and exit at Sedgwick Street. Walk a half-block north to North Avenue.

Seventh Viewing Area – UIC-Halsted (Blue Line) Station – Miles #13.5 and #16.5. Board a Blue Line train and exit at UIC-Halsted. Use the Halsted Street exit or Morgan Street exit. Walk two blocks north to Adams Street (Mile #13.5) in Greektown or use the Halsted Street exit to view runners at Mile #16.5

Eighth Viewing Area – 18th (Pink Line) Station – Mile #19. Board a Pink Line train and exit at 18th Street. Walk one block east to Ashland.

Ninth Viewing Area – Halsted (Orange Line) Station – Mile #20.5. Board an Orange Line train and exit at Halsted.

Tenth Viewing Area – Sox-35th and 35th-Bronzeville-IIT (Red/Green Line) Stations – Mile #23. Board a Green Line train and exit at 35th-Bronzeville-IIT usingeither the 33rd Street or 35th Street exit. Board a Red Line train and exit at Sox-35th. Walk two blocks east on 35th Street to State Street.

Eleventh Viewing Area – Cermak-McCormick Place (Green Line) Station – Mile #25. Board a Green Line train and exit at Cermak-McCormick Place. Walk two blocks east to Michigan Avenue.

Twelfth Viewing Area – Roosevelt (Red/Green/Orange Lines) Station – Finish Line. Board a Red, Green or Orange line train and exit at Roosevelt. Walk east on Roosevelt Road toward the Museum Campus/Grant Park.


Oktoberfest, Mount Prospect

Date: Friday, Oct 7 – Saturday, Oct 8
Time: Friday, 4:00 p.m. – 11:00 p.m. & Saturday 1:00 p.m. to 11:00 p.m.
Location: Downtown Mount Prospect

On Saturday, enjoy pumpkin decorating, trick-or-treat candy line, hay rides & food and music in the downtown area.
Join in the fun of celebrating Mount Prospect’s heritage with authentic German food, spirits and music including the Phenix German Band at 6:00 p.m.


The Great Highwood Pumpkin Fest

Date: Friday, Oct 7 – Sunday, Oct 9

At 9:00 a.m. on October 8, the Superhero 5k steps off at the Great Highwood Pumpkin fest! It may not be the Chicago Marathon, but it can definitely get you into the spirit of both the running and fall season.

Click here for registration.
Click here for registration.

From the event website: BYOP (Bring Your own Pumpkin). The quantity of pumpkins delivered on site by the organizers alone will NOT be enough to break the world record without you. To help us get over the hump and break the record, bring a carved pumpkin. Place a candle in the pumpkin, and bring it to our Pumpkin Drop Off location in front of City Hall. All those who bring carved pumpkins will receive a FREE admission pass to the weekend event. BYOP pumpkins will be accepted through Sunday afternoon on Oct 9th.


St. Charles Scarecrow Fest

Date: Friday, October 7 – Sunday, October 9
Location: St. Charles

From Festing.com: Located one hour West of Chicago and along the Fox River is the annual St. Charles Scarecrow Fest! For over 25 years, this award-winning festival has brought family traditions and unforgettable memories to children and adults of all ages. The heart of this event is the Scarecrow Contest, which draws over 100 entries each year! From mechanical creations to the traditional scarecrows, visitors view and vote for their favorite in each of six categories. Children will enjoy making their own scarecrow to take home, a carnival, model train displays, a petting zoo and more! Visitors will also enjoy FREE, live entertainment all weekend as well the Autumn on the Fox Arts and Crafts Show. Be sure to also check out a new addition to the festival, the Canine Corner ? complete with a dog costume contest and wiener dog races! Choose from food vendors throughout the fest or many “unique to St. Charles” restaurants. The possibilities are endless! Best of all?.admission, parking, trolleys and parking shuttles are all FREE. Make it a weekend and enjoy a Fall getaway with the entire family. Hotel specials, festival schedules and more are available on visitstcharles.com.

Midnight Circus in the Parks

Date: Every weekend through October 16th!
Time: Various
Location: Various

A big show under the big top comes to local parks in Chicago each fall since 2007. The Midnight Circus has breath-taking local performers, including two rescue dogs, perform while raising funds for Chicago parks! In the past 10 years, the organization has raised more than $800,000 for the Chicago Park District!

From the website: Midnight Circus was a young, brash, troupe of performers on our first adventure together in Europe. We were enchanted with the intimate theatrical circuses we saw in the small parks and piazzas in Italy and France. The idea that families could come together in their very own communities and enjoy unique, exciting, world-class entertainment was a revelation to us. We were of the mind that you had to travel across town, fight traffic, and spend time and money parking in order to enjoy such a treat. We said to ourselves that one day we would create such a venue in our country, in our city, in our community.

From the Midnight Circus Facebook page…



Traffic Restrictions & Road Projects

From the Chicago Marathon website: Vehicle removals If you live on one of the streets along the marathon route (see course map), you must move your vehicle to another location off of the course by Saturday, October 8, 2016. Towing of vehicles on closed thoroughfares will begin at 1 a.m. on Sunday, October 9. Vehicles that are not removed from the street by 1 a.m. will be ticketed and towed to the nearest auto-pound. For inquiries about towed vehicles, call 312.744.4444. We appreciate your support in creating a safe environment for the thousands of participants, volunteers and spectators.

Chicago Cubs Playoff Games Traffic Information
Parking Restrictions
Beginning at Noon on Friday, October 7
continuous through Sunday, October 9 at 4am.
Clark – School/Aldine to Irving (Both Sides)
Sheffield-Roscoe to Grace (Both Sides)
Addison-Halsted to Southport (Both Sides)
Racine-Roscoe to Clark (Both Sides)
Irving Park – Clark to Seminary (Both Sides)
Seminary & Newport – Com-Ed Substation
Beginning Friday, October 7 at 8am continuous through Sunday, October 9 at 8am
Seminary (east side) from Newport to the alley and
Newport (north side) from Seminary to the alley 
Street Closures – Approximately 3 hours prior to Game Time
Sheffield (Addison to Waveland) Full Street Closure (Except Fire Lane)- Pedestrian access will remain open on both sides of Sheffield
Waveland (Sheffield to Clark) Full Street Closure (Except Fire Lane) – Pedestrian access will remain open on both sides of Waveland
  • Expect street closures between Belmont and Irving Park / Halsted to Southport. At the discretion of the Chicago Police and OEMC, arterial streets MAY be closed to ALL vehicular traffic. Please have Photo ID and Proof of Residence available for presentation to either CPD or Traffic Management Personnel.  While this may be inconvenient, public safety is of the utmost importance.

CTA and Public Transit Weekend Alerts

Extra service for Chicago Marathon spectators and participants on ‘L’ train lines.

RAIL SERVICE (Sunday Only):
To accommodate additional ridership for the 2016 Bank of America Chicago Marathon, the CTA will provide extra rail service on Sunday, October 9:

Red Line: Longer trains will be running earlier and with more frequent service, from 5 a.m. until 4 p.m.

Blue Line: Longer trains will be running from 5 a.m. until 4 p.m., with more frequent service from 9:35 a.m. until 11:20 a.m.

Brown Line: Longer trains will be running from 6 a.m. until 3 p.m. with more frequent service

Green Line: Longer trains will be running from 5:30 a.m. until 3 p.m.

Orange Line: Longer trains will be running from 5:30 a.m. until 3 p.m.

Purple Line: Will provide earlier service, with the first train departing Linden at 5:30 a.m.

On Sunday, the CTA will provide additional service on #3 King Drive: from 5:30 a.m. to 8:30 a.m.  Along the race course, there will be intermittent reroutes affecting the following CTA bus routes:

#3 King Drive #56 Milwaukee
#4 Cottage Grove #60 Blue Island/26th
#6 Jackson Park Express #62 Archer
#8 Halsted #65 Grand
#9 Ashland #66 Chicago
#10 Museum of Science & Industry #70 Division
#12 Roosevelt #72 North
#J14 Jeffery Jump #73 Armitage
#18 16th/18th #74 Fullerton
#20 Madison #76 Diversey
#21 Cermak #77 Belmont
#22 Clark #124 Navy Pier
#29 State #126 Jackson
#35 31st/35th #146 Inner Drive/Michigan Express
#36 Broadway #147 Outer Drive Express
#44 Wallace/Racine #151 Sheridan
#50 Damen #152 Addison


Park District agrees to transfer land for Obama presidential library bid

(CHICAGO) The Obama Foundation said Wednesday the Chicago Park District’s approval to transfer land in Washington Park and Jackson Park for the Obama Presidential Library improves the city’s chances for getting the coveted attraction.

The park district voted unanimously Wednesday evening to approve the transfer after about an hour of public comment, the Chicago Sun-Times reported.

The Obama Foundation applauded the decision: “The Foundation welcomes the action of the Chicago Park District Board of Commissioners, which improves Chicago’s bids for the Obama Presidential Center,” a statement said. “We appreciate the City of Chicago’s efforts to develop a competitive and robust proposal and the engagement of the community and City Council in an open dialogue about the potential of a future Center.”

A decision on where the museum will be built will be announced in March. Columbia University in New York and the University of Hawaii are the other two finalists.

Mayor Rahm Emanuel also showed his support for the decision.

“I am committed to moving heaven and earth to ensure that the Obama Presidential Library makes its home on Chicago’s South or West side, not on Manhattan’s Upper West Side,” Emanuel said in a statement. “As the city where President Obama started his career in public service and raised his family, Chicago is united in its effort to welcome the president’s legacy and the foundation of his future civic initiatives. Today’s action by the Park District is another step toward ensuring we’ve met the president’s request to secure the three finalist sites.”

The unanimous vote by five park district commissioners didn’t come easy. And at least one park conservancy group says it plans to file legal action against the city.

Park District Vice President Avis Lavelle told a packed Near North Side gymnasium crowd that the board had heard more than eight hours of public testimony: “I don’t recall any issue that has ever come before us that has been so thoroughly discussed as this,” Lavelle said.

Among the supporters was Timuel Black, a 96-year-old resident of Washington Park, who said the library in Chicago would promote a sense of community and inspire future political newcomers.

“It would help the community on all kinds of levels and certainly inspire many newcomers,” Black said.

“The natural place, as far as I’m concerned, historically, politically, every way I’m concerned is Washington Park,” Black said. “Washington Park has the history and brings unity to the community.”

Other supporters included about 30 Hyde Park Career Academy students who wore blue hats that read “Bring Obama Home To Chicago.”

Friends of the Parks President Cassandra Francis warned the board prior to their vote that the decision to approve would result in costly litigation.

The approval of the board on Wednesday means the city can go forward with the selection process.

The University of Chicago’s proposed library site is roughly 21 acres of Washington Park or 20 acres of Jackson Park.

Should Chicago not be chosen for the library, the land will remain park space.

The park district resolution follows an ordinance Emanuel introduced in January to allow for the transfer of land. Francis said her group is evaluating legal options and will take action following the City Council vote.

–Chicago Sun-Times

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