We had our earbuds out this week and overheard some hilarious, out-of-context quips about puppy brains, ginger hell and other things you care about. Did you overhear something crazy this week? Email us or tweet us @TimeOutChicago with #wordonthestreet, and you may find it in the next Word On The Street. Want more? Sign up here to stay in the know.
If you're one of those people that loves to know what's going on first in Chicago's food and drink world, the James Beard Foundation is rolling out a program for you. The Chicago Tribune reported that the James Beard Foundation's New York City program, Greens, will be opening a chapter in Chicago. It's for people ages 21 to 39 and gives members access to events around the city. A membership will cost you $75 a year, netting you discounts, early access to public and members-only events, and JBF's exclusive newsletters. Events start June 6 with a tiki party at River North's Three Dots and a Dash, but the website promises events like multi-course dinners, hands-on cooking classes, demos, cocktail parties and tastings. You can apply for membership now, but until the parties start in June, here's a list of upcoming Chicago events: June 6: Tiki party at Three Dots and a DashJuly: Game night at Chicago Athletic AssociationSeptember: Chicago Gourmet collaboration at the Crown at Tribune TowerOctober: Cuts and Cabernet at Prime & Provisions Want more? Sign up here to stay in the know.
The Chicago European Union Film Festival kicked off at the Gene Siskel Film Center on March 3 and continues until the end of the month. Here are my best bets for the festival’s fourth and final week. Austerlitz is a provocative and challenging German documentary on the subject of “Holocaust tourism” by the Ukrainian director Sergei Loznitsa (Maidan). The film daringly eschews all of the usual contextualizing devices of non-fiction cinema (interviews, voice-over narration, onscreen texts, etc.) and merely presents viewers with static long-take shots of men and women filing into and out of museums on the grounds where the death camps at Auschwitz and Sachsenhausen once stood. Most of the subjects look as though they could be visiting an amusement park or any other major tourist attraction but Loznitsa’s refusal to provide any sort of commentary on the stark black-and-white images means that viewers are left to draw their own conclusions about why people visit these sites and whether or not it’s disrespectful to do so in a shirt emblazoned with the words “Cool Story, Bro.” American-born French director Eugene Green (La Sapienza) returns to CEUFF with The Son of Joseph, a masterful comedy/drama about a teenage boy (Victor Ezenfis) searching for the identity of his birth father (Mathieu Amalric), a journey that ends up taking on parallels to the Biblical stories of the birth of Christ and Abraham’s near-sacrifice of Isaac. The film’s extensive meditation on father/son relationship
Ever been on a date at a bar and needed to get out of an uncomfortable or unsafe situation? New Line Tavern and Brownstone have a new system in place to help keep patrons safe. The bars have placed posters in the women's restrooms with instructions for a shot to order if you need help getting out of your date for whatever reason. There's a few variations on the angel shot, so here's a quick guide to help you out:Angel shot neat: The bar team will escort you to your car.Angel shot with ice: The bar team will call an Uber or a Lyft.Angel shot with lime: The bar team will call the police and stay with you until they arrive. Director of operations and partner Justin Witalka said he got the idea from Instagram, after seeing another bar was doing something similar. He teamed up with the bar's marketing and design coordinator to tweak the language and make it their own and create a flyer. Witalka says no one's ever used it, but that it's there just in case anyone does need it. The signs have been in the bars for about four months now, and Witalka hopes that the idea catches on for other bars in Chicago. "I think other bars should be doing it," Witalka said. "We're responsible for creating group situations and bringing people together, whether it's first dates or casual encounters, and we can do our best to keep everyone safe and having a good time." Courtesy New Line Tavern and Brownstone Want more? Sign up here to stay in the know.
New grab-and-go salads and a variety of fresh sandwiches are among the new lunch items set to make their debut next month at Starbucks stores throughout Chicago. The Starbucks Mercato menu will be unveiled on April 11 at more than 100 stores in Chicago and include options that "meet a variety of dietary lifestyles," the company announced this week. Items on the new menu will be prepared daily, but leftovers won't go to waste. Starbucks said its stores will donate the remaining items each night to local food banks, as part of the Starbucks FoodShare program with Feeding America. During the company's annual shareholders meeting on March 22, incoming CEO Kevin Johnson said the Mercato menu is part of ongoing efforts to double Starbucks food business by 2021. Following the Chicago launch, the company is expected to expand its revamped lunch menu to other U.S. cities. Want more? Sign up here to stay in the know.
Spring officially arrived on Monday, but today's high temperatures are the warmest in more than four months. With an expected high of 75 degrees this afternoon, Chicagoans are enjoying the warmest day since Nov 17, when the recorded high at Midway Airport was 74. From patio dining to visiting Millennium Park, there are plenty of fun ways to enjoy Chicago's unseasonably warm weather. But you may want to do it fast. According to the National Weather Service in Chicago, there's going to be an abrupt temperature drop in the late afternoon and evening. That cool down will give way to showers and thunderstorms later tonight and into the weekend. Windy but unseasonably warm today. Showers & T-Storms arrive this eve/tonight & continue at times thru weekend. pic.twitter.com/B6Cr9buw3b — NWS Chicago (@NWSChicago) March 24, 2017 Still, it will take more than a little rain to keep Chicagoans from enjoying their weekend, and there are far too many dope spring events in Chicago to stay cooped up indoors. Want more? Sign up here to stay in the know.
ICYMI, Daley Plaza is filled with food trucks today. The City of Chicago's food truck fests are back in full swing starting today, if today's weather isn't fitting enough. From now through October, you'll find a lineup of food trucks, with offerings from empanadas to pizza, saving you from #sadlunch blues. The food truck fest will take place 11am–3pm weekly at Daley Plaza and once a month at Pioneer Court, a new location making its debut this year. Food trucks have seen a bit of a decline this year, what with Chicago's food truck laws being notoriously strict, from downtown parking restrictions to food preparation regulations. Brick-and-mortar locations are on the up, with Dönermen's Dmen Tap being the most recent. So head out to the fest to show our local food trucks some love—they'll appreciate it. Check out the dates below and mark your calendars for the next fest. Daley Plaza:March 24, 31April 7, 13, 21, 26May 2, 12, 17, 24, 31June 9, 23, 30July 7, 12, 21, 28August 2, 11, 18, 25September 1, 6, 15, 22, 29October 6, 13, 20, 25 Pioneer Court:March 29April 12May 10June 8July 19August 16September 12October 4
A second floor, an open-air ledge and an attraction that would let visitors rappel from the 103rd story of the Willis Tower Skydeck are all included in a proposed $20 million renovation of the famous tourist spot. A recent report from Morningstar Credit Ratings obtained by Crain's outlined the planned expansion of the Skydeck, which would be part of a more than $500 million renovation of the skyscraper. One of the more ambitious plans for the popular observatory is the installation of an enclosed, two-story glass structure, where daring visitors could rappel from the 103rd floor to the 102nd. If the idea of dangling from a rope more than 1,300 feet above the ground is a bit too extreme for you, a proposed Ledgewalk might be more your style. Visitors would be fitted with a safety harness and allowed to take a stroll on an outdoor glass ledge. Blackstone Group, which owns the Willis Tower (still the Sears Tower in some people’s hearts), is also considering an enclosed glass staircase between the two floors of the expanded observatory, as well as additional food and retail options at the Skydeck. Paula Chirhart, a spokeswoman for the company, told Crain's that any possible changes to the Skydeck are still in the planning stages. Want more? Sign up here to stay in the know.
Get EXTREME! The Museum of Science and Industry is hosting a Friday night party with cocktails, music, and a peek into their latest exhibit, Extreme Ice. Think about it: Learning about the coldest places on Earth will make Chicago feel like the tropics. (Museum of Science and Industry, 5700 S Lake Shore Dr, Fri 7pm. $30) See Regina Spektor in concert The Russian-American singer-songwriter of every liberal arts grad’s wildest dreams is gracing the Chicago Theatre this weekend. She’s apparently got a thing for gorgeous, old Chicago theaters—check out the music video she recently shot inside the Uptown Theatre. (Chicago Theatre, 175 N State St, Fri 7:30pm. $37–$82) Celebrate the Empty Bottle’s 25th anniversary The Bottle kicks off its anniversary concert series by inviting you to dance your butt off to electro-garage rock husband and wife duo, Quintron and Miss Pussycat. Be warned: It’s gonna get weird. (Empty Bottle, 1035 N Western Ave, Sat 9pm. $20) Dance through a museum Explore the work of famed dance choreographer Merce Cunningham in Common Time, a Museum of Contemporary Art exhibition that contains costumes, sets, music and archival footage from throughout Cunningham's career. (Museum of Contemporary Art, Fri–Sun 10am–5pm. $12) Go full arena rock Jon Bon Jovi brings his feathered hair and leather vests to the UC. Get ready for “Livin’ On A Prayer” karaoke sung by at least 20,000 people. (United Center, 1901 W Madison St, Sun 7:30pm. $20–$545) Keep celebrati
Two lawmakers from Chicago’s North Side are sparking an effort to legalize recreational weed in Illinois. State Sen. Heather Steans and Rep. Kelly Cassidy introduced legislation on Wednesday that would make it legal for adults to possess, purchase and grow small amounts of marijuana, as well as create a process for the regulating and licensing of businesses looking to cultivate, process, test and sell legal pot. Specifically, the house and senate bills propose changing the Cannabis Control Act to allow people 21 and older to purchase marijuana and make it legal for residents to possess up to 28 grams of weed. Nonresidents could possess only 14 grams, and it would be illegal to smoke your stash in public. Similar to alcohol, you wouldn't be able to get high behind the wheel and regulations such as restrictions on marketing would be developed. Oh, and there will be taxes. The bill includes a tax of $50 per ounce at the wholesale level and the standard 6.25 percent sales tax on retail sales. According to estimates from the Marijuana Policy Project, Illinois could expect as much as $699 million a year in new revenue by legalizing and regulating weed. “In a regulated system, the money would go into the cash registers of licensed, taxpaying businesses,” Steans, who chairs the Senate Appropriations Committee, said in a statement. “It would generate hundreds of millions of dollars per year in new revenue for our state.” Marijuana legalization advocates also see the legislation as