Evanston RoundTable
City Clerk Stephanie Mendoza pulls another ping-pong ball from a box.

Good Sunday morning, Evanston.

A cardboard box salvaged from storage, some ping-pong balls and a colleague to record the ceremony – all the ingredients needed to conduct a lottery to determine which citizens will serve on a City Manager interview panel.

The city is down to two candidates in its search for a new City Manager. Residents chosen in the lottery will interview the two final candidates.

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

Committee approves initial Orrington lab-building plans. The Design and Plan Review Committee approved plans for a 10-story mixed-use office building at 1732-34-40 Orrington Ave. The building still needs Land Use and City Council approval.

Evanston hospitals report increasing numbers of COVID-19 patients as omicron grips the community. Evanston has seen a staggering surge in COVID-19 cases among residents, far surpassing any previous wave of cases.

Nalls declares interest in filling 9th Ward Council seat. Sebastian Nalls, the 21-year-old Purdue University student who impressed observers in the 2020-21 mayoral race, has declared his interest in filling the 9th Ward Council seat being vacated by current Ald. Cicely Fleming.

Mayoral appointment to fill 9th Ward seat may require special election in 2023.

COVID-19 update as of Jan. 6: 136 new cases in Evanston, a record 44,089 in the state. New COVID-19 cases continue to surge in Evanston, Chicago, suburban Cook County, Illinois and around the nation.

Many stops, few shelters. An often overlooked piece of the city’s infrastructure – bus shelters – may be in line for special attention this year. 

City Manager finalists to be introduced at virtual town hall at 4 p.m. today, Sunday, Jan. 9.

Technician tests for COVID-19. (Photo by Heidi Randhava) Credit: Heidi Randhava

Evanston shuts down unapproved COVID-19 testing center. For over a week in December, an unapproved testing site operated in an empty storefront at the corner of Church Street and Maple Avenue.

Chandler's 1940s
Chandler’s in Evanston in the 1940s. (Evanston History Center)

Check out our new Evanston history page. The RoundTable has launched a page that brings together all of our feature stories on Evanston history. You’ll find the series of Evanston Dimensions features from the Evanston History Center along with other news and feature stories related to our town’s past.

Art & Life

Evanston Dimensions | Ask the Historians. The Queen Anne-style house at 239 Greenwood St., just two doors down from the History Center at the Dawes House, has a long and unusual history.

Laurice Bell and Ron Whitmore (RoundTable photo) Credit: Doug Whitmore

A podcast where Evanston conversations are the rule. Whether together or apart, Evanston natives Ron Whitmore and Laurice Bell radiate a shared energy of enthusiasm, honesty, attentiveness and virtue.

Lakescape bricolage mural (Photo by Gay Riseborough)

Evanston’s bricolage murals, or what on earth is bricolage? In the arts, bricolage is the construction or creation of a work from a diverse range of things available, or a work constructed using mixed media.

Sixth year of Levy Lecture Series starts Jan. 11. Megan Wells will return to the virtual Levy Lecture Series stage on Tuesday, Jan. 11, to present a dramatization of the life of Car Burton, the famed Civil War nurse and founder of the American Red Cross.

Local empowerment center supports women and girls through movement. When the world went online, Malik Turley, founder and executive director of Hip Circle Empowerment Center, said the center was prepared.

Find the winning chess moves. The Evanston Township High School chess team won many games and matches in 2021. For each of the positions shown, see if you can find the decisive moves that were played by ETHS players on their way to victory.

New community fridge opens outside Kombucha Brava.

A new community fridge decorates the outside of Kombucha Brava, at 717 Custer St. The fridge officially opened on Christmas Eve, and is the fourth of its kind in Evanston.

Unlocking the power with Evanston Community Foundation CEO Sol Anderson. The RoundTable recently sat down with Sol Anderson, the new CEO of the Evanston Community Foundation, to learn about his ideas and inspirations.

Maturity isn’t all it’s cracked up to be. Dear Gabby, My coworker gave everyone in our office holiday gifts except me.

Getting to know Northwestern’s Brady Scholars Program. The RoundTable is launching a new video series that will put a spotlight on people and organizations in our community worth getting to know.

The Weekend Photos

Public Square

Hilda Carper, founding director of Hilda’s Place, dies at 94. Hilda Weber Carper, 94, died peacefully at home in Evanston on Dec. 22.

Charles Wilkinson: Never not the last word. Never say “never” and those who know me say I am never at a loss for words.

Peggy Tarr: “A Man Of All Seasons”. My heart sank when I read of Archbishop Tutu’s passing.


Kits tap into potential with runnerup finish at Centralia. Every year former Evanston basketball coach Herb Williams gives a talk to the Wildkits during the Centralia Holiday Tournament. This year he talked about potential.

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Adina Keeling is a photojournalist and reporter, covering city news, sustainability, schools, and art. She also investigates mental health systems and environmental injustices in Evanston, and puts together...