Evanston RoundTable

Good Tuesday morning, Evanston!

Above, brothers Joshua (left) and Jordan Peck, 13 and 8, make the last sand castle (it’s actually a sand soccer goal) at Lee Street Beach on Labor Day, the final day of the season for Evanston’s swimming beaches. (Photo by Richard Cahan)

As summer comes to a close, the RoundTable talked with Evanston lifeguards, including supervisor Zoe Cvetas, below.

Credit: Richard Cahan

After an independent report in 2021 found “pervasive” sexual misconduct by managers at Evanston’s six beaches, the city vowed to make reforms and hired new leaders for the Parks and Recreation Department and the lakefront. The RoundTable interviewed four lifeguards – two veterans and two “rookies.” We asked them their thoughts about the beach working environment in the past and the season just ending. Is there a new culture? Do they feel safe? What was the best and worst aspects of their job?

And now, in other news:

Evanston’s reparations program has been developing for several years, culminating in the first benefits being paid earlier this year to Ancestor recipients. To provide a timeline of how it reached this point, the RoundTable is publishing a two-part series, Evanston’s historic reparations program: A 101 guide. Read part one now, which runs from the initiative’s 2002 origins up to the 2020 release of a historical report documenting the City of Evanston’s role in discriminatory housing practices.

Credit: New York Public Library

The RoundTable’s presentation of Placemaking, a series to uncover Asian, South Asian and Pacific Islander histories in Evanston, concludes today with the remainder of the story of Wong Aloy, one of Evanston’s first Asian residents. The Evanston History Center’s Jenny Thompson details Wong’s work as an interpreter and guide for the “Committee of Fifteen” in New York City’s Chinatown, his marriage to Agnes McGonigle, his return to Chicago, and more.

COVID-19 by the numbers: Eight new cases and no new deaths were reported Thursday, Sept. 1, the last day the city updated totals. The seven-day average is six cases per day.

Elsewhere on the RoundTable website

Credit: Wendi Kromash

Ninety reasons to celebrate Sam Johnson. Longtime barber at Church Street Barber Shop Sam Johnson turns 90 years old on Sept. 13, inspiring friends Melvin “Rommie” Taylor, Bob Reece and others to organize a special birthday party for him Saturday. A sizable crown turned out to celebrate with Johnson, who was honored by the city in 2016 for his work as a community activist, a mentor to young people and as a successful businessperson.

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Around the web

Family releases balloons, demands justice for Devin ‘Boom’ McGregor, boy killed in Rogers Park shooting. At Dodge Avenue and Church Street in Evanston on Friday, relatives released blue balloons for Devin, a kindergartner at Willard Elementary School, and called for justice. Chicago Police had a person in custody, but that person has since been released.

Swing and a Miss: Caddyshack restaurant pulls out of former Baker’s Square site in Wilmette. Plans to develop a Murray Bros. Caddyshack restaurant on Skokie Boulevard will not proceed, according to village officials and confirmed by representatives of the restaurant group.

Here’s how you can help migrants arriving in Chicago From Texas. Another 75 migrants arrived in Chicago Wednesday night, bused in from Texas by Republican Gov. Greg Abbott as part of a protest of federal border policies. Chicago officials were ready to greet them, and the city has partnered with local groups to try to help the migrants rebuild their lives. Block Club Chicago has more on some of those groups and how you can support them.

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Alex Harrison reports on local government, public safety, developments, town-gown relations and more for the RoundTable. He graduated from Northwestern University's Medill School of Journalism in June...