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Evanston RoundTable

Good Tuesday morning, Evanston.

Above, librarian Katy Jacob heads home Monday after closing up the Evanston Public Library. The library is marking its 150th year with a $150,000 fundraising drive. (Photo by Richard Cahan)

Credit: Bob Seidenberg

The City Council’s Human Services Committee was busy Monday night:

• Committee members backed a Fair Workweek Ordinance. After comments from life care and nursing care facilities (Nadim Abi-Antoun, chief operating officer of Presbyterian Homes, is pictured above), the committee exempted those fields, as well as child care, from the legislation, which it sent to the full council on a 4-1 vote.

• The committee by a 5-0 vote backed a proposal to ban plastic bags at stores citywide by Aug. 1. The city’s existing ban on thin plastic bags has been “circumvented” by large retailers’ shift to thicker bags, Sustainability and Resilience Coordinator Cara Pratt wrote in a memo.

• The committee rejected a proposal to explore legalizing psilocybin, a hallucinogenic compound in psychedelic mushrooms. There have not been any arrests for psilocybin possession in Evanston over the last decade, police said. “We are not understanding the clear harm that the war on drugs has played in our community,” Council Member Devon Reid (8th Ward) said after the 3-2 vote.

Credit: Duncan Agnew

Inspired by the help she receives from her mom, Dewey second-grader Avery Jenkins (front and center in photo) is sending curly hair products to kids in Illinois’ foster care system. She’s already raised more than $3,000 in a GoFundMe campaign for “Avery’s Helpful Hair Kits” and has donated 25 kits to Lydia Home Evanston.

News & Brews: Treat yourself to an evening of live music and drinks at Sketchbook Brewing on Sunday, May 7. Join us from 6 to 8 p.m. as the RoundTable celebrates 25 years serving the Evanston community. Your ticket includes two drinks and unlimited selfies with the folks who make local journalism happen!

COVID-19 by the numbers: Two new cases and no new deaths were reported Sunday, April 30, the last day the city updated totals. The seven-day average is 3.43 cases per day. The RoundTable will discontinue daily reporting of this data when the national COVID-19 emergency ends May 11.

More RoundTable reads

Credit: Orin Zyvan

The Art of Making Art: Columnist Jean Cunningham details Joseph Taylor’s artistic style and creative process in creating woodcut prints, some of which were recently showcased at the 1100 Florence Gallery in Evanston.

Hopeless romantics, take note: The Waa-Mu Show’s 92nd edition offers Romance en Route. Critic Wendi Kromash says this year’s Waa-Mu Show, Northwestern’s student-written and student-produced musical, “will make you want to go to Paris.”

Credit: Evanston Chamber of Commerce

It must be the sauce: Hecky’s, an Evanston institution, was voted best Chicago-style barbecue in the Chicago Tribune’s 2023 Readers’ Choice Awards. Owner Cheryl Judice also credits her team’s efforts and the support of the community since her husband’s death in 2020.

Credit: Tameeka McFarlane

ETHS girls track: Senior Abrielle Artley (seen above center at a 2022 event) captured titles in both the 100 meter and 300 meter hurdle races Saturday at the rain-plagued Palatine Relays.

Credit: @ETHSports Twitter

ETHS boys gymnastics: After winning every event at last week’s Central Suburban League conference championship, sophomore Erik Van Leer (in No. 1 podium spot above) is moving on to a national challenge.

Notice of public meeting for private/parochial school students with disabilities, May 24. Districts 65 and 202 will hold a joint virtual meeting on special education services for students with disabilities at private and home schools.

Photos from our readers

Credit: Melanie Kitchner

Melanie Kitchner captures members of the Unitarian Church of Evanston during the YWCA’s Walk Against Racism on April 27. Send your photos to news@evanstonroundtable.com for a chance to be included in this newsletter.

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Around the web

Northwestern provides emergency communication updates following Clark Street Beach shooting. The university says it has developed new template messages that are “easier and quicker” to send out.

Main Street improvements likely delayed until 2024, according to Ald. Jonathan Nieuwsma. The second phase of Evanston’s Main Street Improvement Project, planned to break ground in June, will most likely start next year.

As migrants continue to arrive, Chicago officials and community groups say they’re out of money and space. Dozens of migrants are currently sleeping at police facilities while they wait to be moved to a temporary shelter.

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Alex Harrison

Alex Harrison joined the RoundTable in 2022 for the summer in between his undergraduate and graduate studies at Northwestern University's Medill School of Journalism. Since then, he continues to write...