Evanston RoundTable

Good morning, Evanston.

In case you missed any of the most important news last week, here’s a roundup of the top stories from the RoundTable this past week.

City News

COVID-19 Update on May 21: ­­­­­­­­­­­­One New Case in Evanston, 1,573 in the State. The seven-day average of new cases for the State is the lowest it has been since July 29. Evanston had only one case today out of 1,400 tests. The seven-day average for Northwestern University students and staff is zero.

Sunday Hours Returning to Main Public Library, Crown Branch to Expand Service As Well. Beginning in June, the Main Public Library will add Sunday hours and the Robert Crown branch library will be open Thursdays, as library officials continue to phase in services with the area’s recovery from COVID-19.

New Website Helps Evanston Consumers Shop Local. Bizi, a new website started by three Northwestern students, launched on May 17. The website aims to help Evanston residents support small local businesses rather than buy from big chains. 

Evelyn ‘Evie’ Raden. Evelyn “Evie” Sherman Raden, a relentless advocate for social causes and friend and mentor to a later generation of some of the City’s most important activists and politicians, died May 11 after a long illness. She was 82.

Schools

ETHS Class of ’21 Shows Wildkit Spirit at In-Person Commencement Ceremonies. Evanston Township High School hosted six in-person commencement ceremonies for the Class of 2021 on May 21. The optional event, which was live-streamed on the ETHS YouTube channel, was held at the school’s Lazier Field on a beautiful, warm, sunny day. The 60-minute graduation programs accommodated students and their families in the safest way possible, which included physical distancing and wearing masks.

The Legacy of School Segregation in Evanston, Part One: ‘Investigating Our History from Different Perspectives’ On May 13 the Evanston Public Library sponsored the first of two forums about “The Legacy of School Segregation” in Evanston. Morris “Dino” Robinson, the Founder and Executive Director of Shorefront Legacy Center, and Mary Barr, author of “Friends Disappear,” were the featured speakers.

District 65 Presents Return-to-School Plan for 2021-22. District 65 schools are scheduled to open for in-person learning for five full days a week at all grade levels beginning Wednesday, Aug. 25.

Arts & Life

Ellie Warren and Aden Johansen love to cook together, whether using simple or complex recipes. (Submitted photo)

Two Middle-School Best Friends Cooked Up Some Fun During the COVID-19 Lockdown. Aden Johansen and Ellie Warren, eighth-graders at Nichols School, met at a summer theater program in 2019. They became friends and over the COVID-19 lockdown developed an even deeper friendship and also become accomplished cooks.

A Prescribed Dose of Nature: The Health Benefits of Spending Time in the Natural World. After a 50-minute walk in the park, a person’s mood improves and their cognitive function increases, according to a 2019 study in a body of work called the Walking Green Project. And people who spend more time outside tend to have better mental health, recent research shows. 

Response to CDC Mask Guidance That Relies on Honor System. The announcement on May 13 by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention that fully vaccinated people do not need to wear masks in most settings continues to stir debate in cities across the country. For some, the change is long overdue. For others, the CDC’s abrupt policy shift feels premature and puts the onus on individuals and businesses to implement the new guidelines.

The Traffic Guy hears … that Fountain Square seems to have a significant but as yet unlocated underground leak. The City has shut off the water while the problem is being investigated, so this year’s “opening” of the fountain will be delayed.

Rank and File | ETHS Wins Gold at U.S. Junior Chess Congress. In April the ETHS chess team took first place in the 18 & under division of the U.S. Junior Chess Congress, a U.S Chess national event with competition in five different age divisions. ETHS led from the start and finished well ahead of the team from Dublin, Calif.

Family Focus Poets Celebrate Each Other and Second Book With Video Trailer, Virtual Snap. Isolation does not always foster loneliness. During the lockdown of 2020-21 that kept some people close and others apart, the poets of Family Focus looked inward – together.

“Enigma” by Barbara Goldsmith (Submitted photo)

What To Do With an Intriguing Piece of Artwork? It’s an ‘Enigma’ Evanston Library Board members were presented with a real “Enigma” at their regular meeting on May 19. Gay Riseborough, a member of the City’s Art Council’s Public Art Working Group, sounded trustees out about accepting a sculpture piece titled “Enigma” that would be installed in the southwest corner of the Reading Garden at the Robert Crown branch library, at Main Street just east of Dodge Avenue.

Sex Positivity for Parents. My children are very into body positivity and sex positivity and all sorts of other kinds of positivity. Which is great! Kudos to them. But my problem is that I was brought up in the dark ages of body shaming (can’t be too rich or too thin!) and sex negativity (dark rooms, unspoken fears). I have to admit that I am a little envious of my children and their seeming freedom around these issues. What can I do to be more like them?

Infant Welfare Society Plans 50th Anniversary Celebration of Baby Toddler Nursery. When the Infant Welfare Society of Evanston’s Baby Toddler Nursery opened its doors in August 1971, it was the first of its kind in Illinois and only the fifth in the nation. What made it novel was the population it served: the nursery cared for infants between the ages of six months and two-and-a-half years, Mondays through Fridays, 7:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. This milestone event is cause for celebration on its own, but even more so this year after what the teachers, staff, families, and children at the Infant Welfare Society have experienced over the last 15 months dealing with COVID-19 – both the illness and prevention.

Sports

Haack homers twice, closes in on ETHS school record. Chloe Haack won’t play any more fastpitch softball once Evanston’s season ends. That’s the reason the senior shortstop is enjoying one of the best seasons in program history. Haack celebrated her graduation earlier in the day Friday by slugging two home runs as the Wildkits battled Glenbrook South to an 11-11 tie in 8 innings before the game was suspended due to darkness.


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