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Chicago magazine

Chicago magazine April 2018

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Since 1970, readers have turned to Chicago magazine for expertise on Chicago’s dining, shopping, and entertainment scenes, as well as for award-winning reporting on the key people and issues in the city. Get your digital subscription to Chicago magazine today.

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United States
Chicagoland Publishing Company
12 Issues

in this issue

1 min.
on chicagomag.com

The (Mostly) Deep Meanings Behind Blue Man Group’s Onstage Food The long-running show goes through a smorgasbord of snacks: in 527 shows last year alone, 18,500 marshmallows, 2,000 pounds of Cap’n Crunch, 2,100 Twinkies, and 26,300 pounds of Jell-O, used in some of the performers’ best gags and bringing meaning to the madness. But they’re a challenge. It requires four hours of training five days a week to catch 30 to 35 marshmallows during a show without choking, much less breaking character. Only then does a Blue Man perfect a commentary on consumption and information overload, taking a cheap, fluffy foodstuff and transforming it into something beautiful onstage. Read more at chicagomag.com/bluemanfood. ON YOUR TABLET Print subscribers can download the magazine’s editions for iPad and Android devices free. Get them at chicagomag.com/ipad and chicagomag.com/android. VIDEO The new…

1 min.
the original hipster farmers

My mother was born on the Greek island of Cephalonia before it had telephone lines or widespread electricity. My father lived in the remote mountain region of Agrafa (which literally translates to “unwritten”) until he was 8, when his family moved to the town of Missolonghi. When I would visit my mom’s parents as a child, I would chase the chickens that ran wild around the yard and ride my grandfather’s donkey, Loulou (her predecessor was named Mussolini—my grandfather’s way of calling the dictator, whose army once occupied the island, a jackass). And I’ll never forget going to see my dad’s family when I was 12. My grandmother kept goats and rabbits, but I developed a particular bond with her rooster and fed him daily. One night, there was a “roast…

1 min.
inside peek

CONTRIBUTORS To mark the 50th anniversary of the civil unrest in this city sparked by the death of Martin Luther King Jr., Chicago commissioned Eve L. Ewing to write a poem. “Immediately I thought of Dr. King’s quote: ‘A riot is the language of the unheard,’” Ewing says. “I wanted to answer the question, Why would somebody start those fires? The voice in the poem is not so much a literal person, but an embodiment of that righteous, autonomous anger.” For his first food review in Chicago, John Kessler, who spent 18 years at the Atlanta Journal-Constitution before moving here in 2015, visited three Chinese restaurants in Bridgeport. His only regret? Not sampling a duck’s head. “Two of the restaurants serve it, so I went in with my duck-head guns blazing,” he…

1 min.
talk to us

ON THE OBAMA CENTER SITE The views of [Jackson Park landscape architect Frederick Law] Olmsted notwithstanding, the principal issue here is the confiscation of parkland held in public trust for 150 years [“Olmsted Vs. Obama,” March]. We have no objection to the construction of the Obama Presidential Center on the South Side, but do it on University of Chicagoowned land and/or vacant city-owned land. Charles A. Birnbaum, the Cultural Landscape Foundation ON A SECRET ANIMAL KINGDOM The spread promoting a basement zoo in La Grange [“The Hidden City,” March] slipped by your sanity check. Over 100 live birds and animals stuck together in a dark basement? Gorgeous tropical species without access to light or air. It’s wrong on so many levels. Suzanne Odland Editor’s note Basement zookeeper Marty Dunne responds: “I care for only 60 animals…

5 min.
golden revolution

Business, politics, real estate, and city life: What you need to know this month The day this winter that McDonald’s summoned the wrecking ball to its hulking rock-’n’-roll-themed restaurant in River North, the 63-yearold company gave itself permission to stop living in the past. In the flagship’s place will rise a solar-powered modernist structure designed by Carol Ross Barney that looks more like a peace garden than a burger joint. Instead of music memorabilia, you’ll find living plant walls. Replacing its iconic yellow arches will be banks of birch trees. It is, in short, the physical manifestation of the vision set forth by Steve Easterbrook when he became CEO in March 2015: Transform McDonald’s into a “modern, progressive burger company” where innovation is not only encouraged but is an existential requirement. At…

2 min.
heaven’s door

Nearly three decades and several demolition scares after St. Boniface Church, at 1358 West Chestnut Street, was shuttered, the historic building is finally ready for its second life. Its cavernous interior will soon be carved into 17 condos, expected to be completed by 2020, with an additional 24 units slated for a new building next door on Chestnut Street, according to Michael Skoulsky of Stas Development, the project’s Wicker Park–based developer. Even though a total gutting is required, the redo, helmed by Space Architects + Planners, will retain elements of the 114-year-old church, such as the large arched windows and exterior limestone columns. The towers and steeply pitched 35-foot ceiling will be integrated into the penthouses. Frescoes and even the graffiti scrawled inside the abandoned property will be repurposed as decorations…