Evanston RoundTable
Evanston Fire Department rescuers lift a person into an ambulance parked near the Clark Street boat ramp. (Photo by Mike Roche)

Good morning, Evanston.

Three swimmers were rescued Saturday off the breakwater at the Clark Street boat ramp, but the body of a 20-year-old adult male was later recovered from the water following a seven-hour search.  

The first emergency call came in at 12:55 p.m., when three swimmers were reported struggling in the water off the breakwater at Clark Street boat ramp. When the Evanston Fire Department water rescue team arrived, the fire crew pulled a mother and child out of the water, along with a male swimmer who had entered the water in an effort to help the struggling swimmers.

The three swimmers were transported to Evanston Hospital, two on basic life support and one on advanced life support, Chief Polep said. The fourth person was recovered from the water at approximately 9 p.m.

Ryan Field seen from Chancellor Street. Evanston stands to gain financially if Northwestern’s football games draw ticket-buying fans. (RoundTable file photo)

Evanston officials are keeping an eye on how Northwestern University’s football season progresses – but in a different way than would the average fan.

The City has seen zero athletic tax revenue through mid-2021, with COVID-19 all but grounding the Wildcats’ basketball program earlier in the year. Officials now have their eyes on the football season, “which we could use in a big way,” Hitesh Desai, the City’s Chief Financial Officer, said as he provided a financial update to the Council last week.

Developer Mitch Goltz in front of the movie theater at 1715 Maple St. Goltz’s firm expects to purchase Church Street Plaza, which includes the theater. (RoundTable photo)

The Century movie theater at 1715 Maple Ave. in Evanston has been closed for more than a year. But that won’t be the case much longer if a developer’s plan comes to fruition.

Mitch Goltz, co-owner of GW Properties, told the RoundTable that the firm is on track to close soon on the purchase of Church Street Plaza, a property that encompasses more than 200,000 square feet, including the theater. Plans include reviving the 12 screens on the north side of the theater and repurposing the other six screens as an entertainment, fitness or recreational venue. 

A photo from the Illinois Department of Public Health shows how the Shield COVID-19 test is administered. (IDPH photo)

COVID-19 testing in District 65 schools is set to begin, with a potential start date of Monday, Sept. 20, according to a statement from Superintendent Devon Horton. 

Along with public schools throughout the state, District 65 will be provided free Shield Illinois COVID-19 testing through the Illinois Department of Public Health. Romy DeCristofaro, Assistant Superintendent of Student Services, said testing schedules will vary by school location and principal recommendations, adding that Shield “can do about 100 individuals per hour and then we should get the results sent to us via a secure system within 24 hours.”

Elsewhere on the RoundTable website

City News

A partial map of the proposed Five-Fifths TIF district. (From City of Evanston materials)

Council moves forward on west side Five-Fifths TIF district. City Council members have the pieces in place to pass the newest tax-increment financing (TIF) district for Evanston. Council members solidly backed the introduction of ordinances at their Sept. 13 meeting related to creation of the Five-Fifths Project TIF – the City’s ninth – despite strong criticism from some community members.

COVID-19 update on Sept. 16. The weekly number of new cases per 100,000 people in Illinois increased from 211 to 218 for the week ending Sept. 16, a 3% increase from the week ending Sept. 9.

Clergy members seek apology for sexual harassment response. “Clergy in Evanston have watched the city’s response to reports of sexual harassment and assault among staff of the Department of Parks, Recreation and Human Services with great interest,” says an open letter sent by clergy to City Council. “Like many of you, we were shocked at the initial response to the brave women and girls who raised their voices and sought justice.” 

Reading us on the website? Sign up for the free newsletter and we’ll deliver it direct to your inbox.


18 Evanston students named semifinalists in the 2022 National Merit Scholarship Program. Officials announced the names of approximately 16,000 semifinalists in the 67th annual National Merit Scholarship Program. The list includes 18 Evanston students.

Public Square

Letter to the editor: Wear a mask, be a superhero! As a registered nurse, a member of the community and local business owner I was very concerned about the historical gap in health care and disparity among the Black and brown and homeless members of our community.

My date is a bad tipper. Dear Gabby, I went on a date with a guy and he offered to pay for dinner and drinks. I was offended that he left a tip that was less than 10% of the bill. How do I tell him that I thought his tip was cheap, off the mark and insensitive?

Woof! Dog tales, from Evanston. Living with two (or more) dogs is not for everyone, but here’s why it can be good for people — and the pooches themselves.

From left, Aydin Dincer, owner of Prairie Joe’s, with his children, Yasmin Dincer-Ubl and Joe Dincer-Ubl.

Change is hard: Prairie Joe’s memories. It was always difficult when the Prairie Joe’s gang would take a well-deserved vacation, usually in August, and my family would await their return. But the vacation could be permanent this time.


ETHS boys soccer: Alert Wildkits earn 1-1 tie, remain unbeaten. Quick thinking by a couple of seniors went a long way toward preserving the Wildkits’ unbeaten record Tuesday against Glenbrook South in the Central Suburban League division opener.

Upcoming Events

Salvation Army to distribute school supplies, personal care items. The Salvation Army Evanston Corps will host a “Helping Our Community” distribution from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 19, during which hundreds of free school supplies and personal care items will be available.

Library celebrates Hispanic Heritage Month. The Evanston Public Library is holding a variety of activities to celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month, which takes place from Sept. 15 to Oct. 15. Among the offerings are a mini-scavenger hunt, a performance by the Xochitl-Quetzal Dance Troupe and a story event for children.

Reconnect at MashUp 2021: Welcome Back, Evanston. To celebrate making it through a difficult year, the Evanston Chamber of Commerce, the City of Evanston and Northwestern University invite residents on Wednesday, Sept. 29, to the MashUp 2021: Welcome Back, Evanston Block Party.

Become a Member!

Evanston local journalism needs your support. Become a champion for our journalists by joining the Roundtable as a Member or a Lead Sponsor. To find out more, contact us at news@evanstonroundtable.com.