Evanston RoundTable
AMC Theaters confirmed it will reopen the movie theater in Church Street Plaza this year. (RoundTable file photo) Credit: RoundTable file photo

Happy Friday morning, Evanston!

Officials with AMC Theatres have confirmed the movie theater chain has reached a lease agreement to acquire and reopen the 12 screens formerly operated as Century Theatres at 1715 Maple Ave., possibly as early as this spring.

The company plans to reopen as AMC Evanston 12, officials said.

“We’re excited about it,” Ryan Noonan, AMC spokesman, said Feb. 17. “We know obviously Chicago is a really good market.”

With Evanston Township High School Superintendent Eric Witherspoon set to retire, the school board recently hired the Alma Advisory Group for $25,000 to assist in the search for his successor. Board President Pat Savage-Williams said Alma was chosen specifically because of its commitment to centering community voices.

But this week, as Alma facilitators held a Feb. 16 focus group discussion for community members to share thoughts on what they want out of a new superintendent, just 20 people joined the call, and only 12 were residents.

Elsewhere on the RoundTable website

COVID-19 update: If metrics continue to improve, the city plans to drop mask and vaccine mandates. New COVID-19 cases in the state have dropped from a seven-day average of 32,501 per day on Jan. 12 to a seven-day average of 3,299 on Feb. 17, a 90% drop. As shown in the above chart, new cases in Evanston have also dropped dramatically.

At this time: Thursday at 4:26 p.m. How many people get picked up by a snowplow? Supervisor Don Cornelius drove me around Evanston. What I learned: 1. Ten drivers were sent out Thursday – two downtown, eight to other neighborhoods. 2. There are 190 miles of streets to plow. 3. Garbage trucks can be equipped with plows if snow is severe. 4. These big trucks are easier to drive than cars. “You sit higher so you see everything more clearly.” 5. Drivers work 12-hour shifts. “We feel a little unappreciated.” (Photo by Richard Cahan)

The Evanston Police Department’s “Transparency Hub” offers data on officers’ use of force.

Evanston police ‘Transparency Hub’ offers data on use of force, crime statistics and more. A website intended to increase transparency in the Evanston Police Department is up and soon should reflect data going back five years.

Charles Wilkinson: E Pluribus … What? The pandemic has likely changed the nature of society and government forever, Wilkinson writes, adding that it’s vitally important to consider the lessons we need to learn from COVID-19’s devastation.

Local author Nonku Adumetey with her books. (Photo provided)

Local author’s new children’s book focuses on authenticity, empowerment. Cloaked in playful imagery and colorful illustrations, Nonku Adumetey’s new book, “I Celebrate My Voice,” pushes children to pursue their passions, express their thoughts and assert their opinions. 

Letter to the editor: ETHS students can adapt to metal detectors. This week the RoundTable published a guest essay against adding metal detectors at ETHS, and S.E. Greenwood writes in response that adjusting to the devices is better than living in fear of a shooting.

Mandarin cranberry preserves should be paired with cheese. (Photo provided)

Pastry chef’s One Last Bite preserves are works of art. Julie Corbier de Lara joined the team at Beth’s Little Bake Shop in Evanston as a pastry chef four years ago, and last month she started her own line of homemade preserves called One Last Bite.

EPD to host virtual info session for officers interested in joining department. The Evanston Police Department will host a virtual info session Thursday, Feb. 24, for people interested in applying for the position of lateral police officer.

Evanston Arts Council opens applications for $195,000 in grant programs. Eligible applicants can apply for Cultural Fund Grants as well as American Rescue Plan Act funds.

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Around the web

‘It was a pillar’: Examining legacy of Evanston’s former Fifth Ward school. A story from The Evanstonian at ETHS looks at the history of Foster School, which has recently become a focus for discussions regarding race relations in Evanston.

Evanston childern’s book authors and illustrators create unique artistic community. Evanston is renowned as a literary town, and local writers and artists have built relationships with others in the book community in a number of fascinating ways.

Public art project aims to color every Evanston ward this July. The Evanston Fourth of July Association is sponsoring a public art project to be displayed throughout the city from July to October.

Chicago Sky’s Candace Parker To Speak At Chicago Public Library Event For Black History Month. ABC 7 sports anchor Dionne Miller will host a conversation about social justice issues with the WNBA star Feb. 28 that will be livestreamed by the Chicago Public Library.

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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...