Credit: Richard Cahan

Good Monday morning, Evanston.

Great to see you again! The RoundTable was off getting our gobble on, just as we hope you were. But with Thanksgiving now in the rearview mirror (and, perhaps, on the bathroom scale!) winter is looming. Frost covers are sprouting in this yard on Greenleaf Street near Ashland Avenue. Now, on to the news.

Credit: Manan Bhavnani

After Thanksgiving came Black Friday and Small Business Saturday, and after years of pandemic struggles, local shops are hoping they’ll have more to celebrate this season. The early Evanston retail report is optimistic.

Credit: ETHS

The ETHS boys basketball team – boosted by five senior transferswon the Saint Viator Thanksgiving Classic tournament last week, defeating Libertyville, Antioch, Prospect and Saint Viator in the round-robin event. Wildkit head coach Mike Ellis saw a lot to like.

Next year it’ll be time for another election – but only for Evanston’s Second and Ninth wards. So far there are three candidates for the Second Ward council seat and two seeking the Ninth Ward post. The deadline to file is today, Nov. 28.

The RoundTable roundup

City Council: The council meets at 5:45 p.m. tonight. The 2023 budget is on the agenda, with a focus on pension funding and a possible property tax hike.

Gun violence: Moms Demand Action and YWCA Evanston/North Shore will host a town hall on gun violence and prevention efforts at 7 p.m. Tuesday.

Margarita Inn: The Land Use Commission meets at 7 p.m. Wednesday; Connections for the Homeless is seeking a special use permit for its shelter.

Jamming Jean concert: Gerald McClendon and his band will perform soul and R&B hits at this free concert at 5 p.m. Friday at the Levy Senior Center.

Holiday tree lighting: The downtown Evanston tree will be lit at 5:30 p.m. Saturday at Fountain Square. Santa and other less famous folks will be there.

Thanks for supporting the RoundTable

As columnist Les Jacobson points out, local news is a foundation of our democracy. The RoundTable, Evanston’s nonprofit news source, relies on your support. And through Dec. 31, donations will be matched by generous national and local partners.

Congratulations to James, the winner of last week’s raffle. He receives a tour and tasting for two at the Starbucks Roastery in Chicago. Continue to donate each week to our NewsMatch campaign for a chance to win a fantastic raffle prize. Thank you!

Some of the donors from last week: Rachel Greeley, Judith Fradin, Constance E. Porteous, Judith Hoffman, Anne Gendler, Lois Moeller, Stuart and Leslie Shulruff, Harv Millman, Carol McConnell, Terri Michaels, Helen Chase Trainor, Isabelle Libmann, Jane Driscoll, Mary Ransford, Lynn Miller, Carol Mullins, Amy and Bob Hays, Joel Michael, Julie Phelan, Robert B. Morris, Jill Twery, Mary Cox, Robert Mark, Yvonne Fogerty, Daniel Jacobson, Peter C Bordwell, James Miller, John McClelland, Anita Remijas, Dorothy Nagelbach, Frances Seth, Donn Trautman, Dave and Marianne Griebler, Henry and Harriet Conroe.

COVID-19 by the numbers: 16 new cases and no new deaths were reported Thursday, Nov. 24, the last day the city updated totals. The seven-day average is 14.57 cases per day.

Elsewhere on the RoundTable website

Credit: Manan Bhavnani

A lakefront run brought out 3,200 people for Evanston’s Flying Turkey 5K run. Gedion Yitref, above, took first. In honor of the holiday, we serve up some Thanksgiving reads from columnist Peggy Tarr and the Rev. Michael Nabors.

Credit: Manan Bhavnani

How should the city spend $3 million in federal American Rescue Plan Act funding? Evanston residents control the participatory budgeting process now underway. More math that matters: The city is looking at redistricting ward boundaries.

Credit: Gay Riseborough / Evanston RoundTable

The Sounds Good choir lived up to its name at a rehearsal earlier this month. Group singing can have a dramatic positive impact on older adults and the choir is “dementia-friendly,” meaning singers with early stage memory loss are welcomed. Hear them for yourself at a free holiday concert this Saturday, Dec. 3.

When considering marriage, can buzz-saw snoring be a deal-breaker? Our advice columnist Gabby has thoughts. Take out those ear plugs and listen up.

The Evanston Public Library’s Betsy Bird was surprised to learn a major international children’s book award is named for … an Evanston librarian. Meet Mildred L. Batchelder, whom Bird calls “one of the great library heroes and one of the great Evanston heroes as well.”

Credit: Heidi Randhava

Nine local leaders were honored at the Nov. 19 Freedom Fund Banquet of the Evanston/North Shore Branch of the NAACP. Dara Munson, president and CEO of Family Focus, congratulated the awardees “not only for the honor you’re receiving, but for standing up and answering the call.”

Credit: Susy Schultz

High Touch boutique has opened at 1551 Sherman Ave., formerly zero-waste general store Eco & The Flamingo. The space that once sold spices, coffee, cleaning products and other bulk items is now home to elegant Middle Eastern and Persian ceramics, home decor, statues and metal crafts. It’s a family affair for the Bolbolans.

Credit: Submitted

He was a high school star at ETHS in track and cross country who went on to compete in the 1956 Olympics before a career as a coach at the University of Iowa. Theodore Stanley “Ted” Richardson Wheeler died Nov. 17 at the age of 91.

Around the web

The worst Northwestern football season in 30 years is finally over — where does the program go from here? Northwestern is tied with UMass for worst record Division I football has seen in the past year and a half.

Joining forces with its neighbors, Wilmette will add automated license-plate readers. Cameras, already active in Glencoe, Kenilworth, Skokie and Northbrook, led to arrests related to a November 2021 Evanston fatal shooting.

In post-Roe America, pilots take the abortion battle to the skies. Elevated Access, a fledgling Illinois nonprofit, has recruited nearly 1,000 volunteer small-craft pilots to ferry people seeking abortion care.

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