Evanston RoundTable

Good Sunday morning, Evanston!

Michael Jackson was back – for one night only – in the form of tribute artist Thomas Stone. Photographer Richard Cahan captured him wowing the costumed crowd Friday night at “Nightmare on Foster Street” at the Fleetwood-Jourdain Community Center.

As Halloween approaches to bring the month to a close, it’s time to look back on the top stories of the week. (A reminder: If you only receive the Sunday newsletter but would also like weekday summaries featuring more news from the RoundTable, sign up here.)

RoundTable hauls 48 awards home: Yes, we’re bragging. The Northern Illinois News Association awarded staffers best in-depth news story series, best watchdog reporting and much more.

Credit: Taylor Carson/Taylor Rae Photography

They Do: Long before he saw her swimming laps in the winter of 2015, Tommy Keefe knew who Evan Swenson was. But it would be years before they would take the plunge together.

Credit: Graham Swaney

Climate change threatens lakefront: It’s real, says Chicago-based SmithGroup engineering firm. Evanston residents weighed in on what kind of shoreline erosion protection the city should build.

Credit: Northlight Theatre

Revamped theater plans: The facade change will help Northlight Theatre cut building costs. But several members of the Land Use Commission were disappointed.

City budget: What do you think about the city’s proposed 2023 budget? The city’s public hearing on Monday featured a flood of comments and questions from residents. The City Council wants to hear more.

Welcome to Evanston: City Council approved $500,000 for a new refugee and immigrant welcoming center. Family Focus, an organization that helps people acclimate to new communities, gave insight on why Evanston needs this center.

Reparations: The Reparations Town Hall inspired dialogue among community members. Residents can get answers to questions and concerns at the next Reparations Committee meeting at 9 a.m. on Nov. 3.

Picture of a hanging photo on a white wall
Credit: Steve Adams

E-Fam remembered: Artists Steve Adam and Ben Blount at the Evanston Made pop-up gallery remind the audience of a sunny day in 2018. This photo (credit Steve Adam) is from Another Evanston: Documenting the 2018 E-Fam Remembrance Picnic. The gallery is open 12 to 5 p.m. today at 832 Dempster St.

Evanston Rules: The Aux and its power of connection. The Aux has made headway since the idea came together in 2019. The Evanston Rules podcast sits down with the four women behind it. The Aux is now looking to raise $1.5 million from community investors.

Schools: Safety, career readiness and literacy were the top priorities at the District 202 and District 65 joint school board meeting. The districts look at the data and their progress on solving issues facing today’s students.

Margaret Sullivan
Credit: Michael Benabib

RoundTable fundraiser: Journalist Margaret Sullivan talks with the RoundTable Nov. 10. RoundTable Editor Susy Schultz will interview Sullivan about her recently published book Newsroom Confidential: Lessons (and Worries) from an Ink-Stained Life.

Spooky Events

Haunted Evanston houses 2022
Credit: Susy Schultz

It’s Halloween weekend! Spooky season has cast a spell on Evanston. See our photo essay on the houses decorated in cobwebs, skeletons and ghouls.

Downtown Evanston is killing Halloween weekend with a Trick or Treat Stroll. The fun begins today at 1 p.m. Trick-or-treat hours tomorrow are 4 to 7 p.m. Tag us in your Halloween pictures on Instagram @EvanstonRoundTable or tweet them to @EvRoundTable for a chance to be featured in our photo roundup.

City News

Credit: Evanston Transit Alliance

Evanston Transit Alliance exploring ways to connect local bike trails. The group wants a trailblazing study to look at extending the North Shore Channel Trail from Green Bay Road to the lakefront.

Late-night NU basketball doesn’t score well with some neighbors. “We just need the basketball court to close at a reasonable hour,” said one.


Credit: Wendi Kromash

Saville Flowers, a true Evanston perennial, marks 80 years. The flower shop at 1714 Sherman Ave. has been bringing Evanstonians flowers for eight decades and counting.

Sauna Club brings a Nordic treat closer – even to your backyard. Ryan Cohler, a new Evanston business owner, aims to bring the pleasures and health benefits of the ancient Nordic tradition to Chicago’s North Shore.

City panel backs aid to expanding workforce center, restaurant. The Economic Development Committee supported giving nearly $2 million in assistance to a nonprofit and restaurant that have been economic bright spots.


NU evaluates Title IX’s legacy at 50 years with three-day conference. The Title IX 50th Anniversary Conference features stories of those who benefited from the landmark law on girls’ and women’s sports and a look at what’s next.

Rank and File | ETHS chess team finishes third at Red Devil Invite Evanston Township High School did great at the Red Devil Chess Challenge at Hinsdale Central Saturday. Read about their success.

Art & Life

Four people pose outdoors on a patio
Credit: Gina Castro

‘The Big Payback’: A dream come true. The documentary about the city’s recent journey to creating the nation’s first reparations program for its Black residents played on the big screen in Chicago. The many faces of reparations showed up to celebrate the film.

Eye on Evanston: Thoughts on Design | Coming of age in the 20s. The second article of a four-part series takes a deeper look at Anne Earle’s proposal for a Northwest Evanston Historic District.

Kathleen Anne Hewitt Kastilahn: 1946-2022. A technical writer turned journalist, Kathleen Anne Hewitt Kastilahn touched many lives during her world travels and career shifts.

Betty Meckstroth: 1940-2022. Longtime educator and adventurer Betty Meckstroth passed away at 82. She was co-author of Guiding the Gifted Child, one of the first and most important books on gifted learners.

Ethel Migra: 1930-2022. Ethel Migra was dedicated to education – both in teaching and in learning. Her desegregation plan and social studies curriculum resulted in a case that eventually went to the Supreme Court.

Public Square

Letter to the editor: Ranked choice voting will be boon to Evanston, says Daniel Biss. The mayor urges residents to vote. Writing in his personal capacity, he also supports voting “yes” on ranked choice voting.

Go without him! The RoundTable’s Dear Gabby gives an assortment of relationship and traveling advice and etiquette tips in this week’s column.


Credit: Brian Schuneman

ETHS girls cross country: Wildkit team preps for success. Evanston managed a 12th place team finish at the Class 3A Hoffman Estates Sectional meet Saturday at Busse Woods. But the team is already looking ahead.

Credit: Brian Schuneman

ETHS boys cross country: Froum leads Wildkits at Sectional meet. Evanston didn’t come close to challenging for a team spot to the state finals. But several Wildkits recorded personal bests.

Credit: Submitted

Haven Middle School cross country team update. The cross country team at Haven Middle School had four meets recently.

ETHS boys soccer loses to Lane Tech, ending the season. The boys season may have come close but they have plenty to look back on.

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Gina Castro is a Racial Justice fellow for the RoundTable. She recently earned a master’s degree from Northwestern University’s Medill School of Journalism where she studied investigative reporting....