Evanston RoundTable
A still of security footage at Autobarn as 14 luxury vehicles were stolen early Monday morning.

Good Wednesday morning, Evanston.

Here are the latest news and feature stories from around the city.

Fourteen luxury vehicles were stolen beginning just after 2 a.m. Monday morning from the Autobarn Collection in Evanston, according to the Evanston Police Department.

The six thieves were caught on security footage arriving at Autobarn, 1910 Greenwood St. In the security footage, they are seen breaking through the glass garage door to access the inside, and then tearing the alarm system out of the wall. Within the span of six hours, 14 vehicles were driven away.

Interim City Manager Kelley Gandurski and First Ward Council member Clare Kelly

Evanston interim City Manager Kelley Gandurski raised concerns about the behavior of City Council member Clare Kelly, 1st Ward, in an email last month after a heated conversation that took place in front of other staff members. 

Without naming the council member, Gandurski wrote that the encounter took place Feb. 22 after she refused to release a hard copy of the lakefront report, following the city’s Corporation Counsel and Mayor’s directives. 

COVID-19 by the numbers: Four new cases were reported Monday, March 7, the last day the city updated case totals. The seven-day average is six cases per day.

Elsewhere on the RoundTable website

At This Time: Tuesday at 6:32 a.m. Runners circle the top of the Northwestern lakefill. They belong to F3, which stands for fitness, fellowship and faith. The group is nonreligious, says local organizer Matt Barton. “Everybody just has to believe in something bigger than yourself.” About 15 to 20 Evanston men belong. They all believe in exercise; they run once a week, take part in three morning boot camps and do community service. (Photo by Richard Cahan)

Oakton Elementary School would have lost TWI classes under an initial proposal. (District 65 photo)

The District 65 Student Assignment Planning committee is shelving a recommendation to move the TWI program at Oakton. The committee, which put forward a plan to shift attendance boundaries and build a Fifth Ward school, will hold off on any decisions on the English-Spanish program to allow community input.

Inspire Through Flowers
Inspire Through Flowers President Christine Costello, right, gives blooms. (Photo by Heidi Randhava)

Flower-delivery nonprofit finds way to keep the kindness coming, even through a pandemic. Inspire Through Flowers found opportunity in a crisis when, just weeks after the Evanston-based nonprofit’s first delivery of flower arrangements to patients in hospitals and nursing homes, pandemic mitigation measures forced them to halt operations.

AJ Oda with his prototype cat beds. (Photo by Wendi Kromash)

Prospective Eagle Scout helps Evanston Animal Shelter. AJ Oda, a senior at ETHS and a member of Scout Troop 924, recently designed and built new cat beds for the Evanston Animal Shelter for his Eagle Scout project.

YWCA web design class attracts moms looking for career shift. The YW Tech Lab offers a free, virtual 18-week web design course that has a track record of attracting mothers 35 and older looking for a career change, according to Kristin Drake, workforce development coordinator at the Evanston YWCA.

A poster designed by Nadia Sidorova, daughter of one of Project Kesher’s leaders, as she evacuated to Western Ukraine with her mother and ailing grandfather. (Photo provided)

On International Women’s Day, Project Kesher helps women in Ukraine. Project Kesher, an international group focused on building Jewish community and empowering female leaders, was founded in south Evanston in 1989 and now is mobilizing globally to support Ukrainian women and families.

It’s not too late: Order free at-home COVID-19 test kits today. Every home in the nation is eligible to order two sets of four free at-⁠home tests.

Main-Dempster Mile looking for live music acts for its summer concert series. The Main-Dempster Mile is looking to book talent for its 2022 Summer Concert Series. Dates for events are listed in the application.

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Around the web

Rescue team evacuates premature American twins from Kyiv in a daring mission. After a surrogate mother gave birth prematurely to a Chicago couple’s twin sons in war-torn Kyiv, Ukraine, a specialist team of U.S. Army veterans rescued the boys and brought them to safety in Poland.

Chicago’s gas prices just hit an all-time high: ‘5 bucks a gallon, that stuff is mind-blowing.’ The average price of a gallon in Chicago went up to $4.57 on Monday as the war in Ukraine continued to squeeze the oil market.

CPS lifting mask mandate for students, staff starting next week. Schools in Evanston dropped mask mandates in recent days; Chicago Public Schools announced it would lift its masking requirement March 14, though the teachers union plans to fight the decision.

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Duncan Agnew covers Evanston public schools, affordable housing, City Hall and more for the RoundTable. He also writes long-form investigations, features and the morning email newsletter three times a...