… that the staging phase of the Central Street bridge project is coming along, thanks in part perhaps to the late fall weather – cool but not frigid and not excessively rainy.

… that, through Dec. 4,  residents are invited to submit public comments about the reconstruction of Crawford between Oakton Street and Golf Road at crawfordavenueproject.com. The phase 1 engineering and environment study is just beginning and will likely take more than a year to complete.

… that the segment of Church Street between Dodge and Darrow will receive the honorary designation Clifford James Wilson Way. Longtime Evanston resident and Pastor of Mt. Pisgah Church, he is the oldest tenured pastor of any church in Evanston and co-chair of the multidenominational pastors consortium Evanston Own It.

… that, speaking of churches, the vacated Church of Christ, Scientist, structure at 2715 Hurd may soon be the home of a Kensington preschool, a local chain founded in 1969.

… that McCaffery Interests, the company that manages Church Street Plaza in downtown Evanston, would like to put a sign up on its property at Maple and Davis. For its property a block away the company proposes a mural and “seating improvements” on the northwest corner of Maple and Church.

… that Mustard’s Last Stand will soon have a temporary kiosk for drive-through pickups.

… that today is the last day for leaf-blowers until March. Welcome, stillness.

… that the recent  full moon, called the Beaver Moon because it marked the time to set traps for fur-bearing animals, was full only on Monday morning, though it appeared full for a few days. And while it was shining in the Monday night sky, it passed through the Earth’s outer shadow, creating a penumbral eclipse that ended just before sunrise on Tuesday. Beavers at the lakefront, meanwhile, continue their frolics and predations (trees, you know). They may be unaware of the portent of this full moon for their forebears, but their pelts as winter approaches take on a silken, glossy sheen.

… that the first automobile race in this country took place on Nov. 28, Thanksgiving Day, in 1895, from what is now the Museum of Science and Industry up to Evanston and back. The Chicago Times-Herald sponsored the race, which had to be postponed twice. The original plan was for a July 4 race from Chicago to Milwaukee and back. Then the date was pushed back, but only two cars were ready by the Nov. 2 date (more than 80 car-owners had shown interest). Chicago Police stopped two of the cars as they were driving into the City – they were told they had no right to drive on Chicago streets, so the race had to be postponed again until the editors of the Times-Herald were able to convince the Chicago aldermen to approve an ordinance allowing the cars to be driven on Chicago streets. Finally, the race was on, with six cars, two electric and four gasoline-powered.  The cold weather knocked out the two electric cars. Frank Duryea developed and drove the car than won the race. It took him about 10 hours, and his car averaged 7.3 miles per hour. (Information from the Smithsonian Magazine, Eyewitness to History, Wikipedia and the Encyclopedia of Chicago)

From our readers: Is he back? This looks like the “Stay As You Are” plaques that were seen around here several years ago. Mary De Jong


From TG: Thank you, Ms. De Jong. The photo you sent certainly looks like the wooden plaques that graced south and central Evanston a few years back. If it’s the same artist, welcome back.

The Traffic Guy thinks …

… that COVID-19 ruled even in choosing words of the year – the top words people searched or looked up  over the past months.  Merriam-Webster and Dictionary.com chose “pandemic.”  Oxford Dictionary’s three words would seem not to require further definition but probably have a lot of applications: Covidiots, Blursday and doomscrolling.

Wear a mask, wash your hands – and Happy Hanukkah to all.