FROM THE HEART

 

Dear Neighbors,

 

I was recently asked what Lincoln Central Association was about. I replied: "Think of us as gardeners." For starters, our members nurture the parks and gardens throughout Lincoln Central helping shape the earth, coaxing the best from the soil as a gift to the community. A great example of this our work at Fire Station Park where neighbors-wherever they live-can harvest what we grow in the gardens. But, our role as "gardeners" goes beyond what we do with the soil.

 

At its heart, the idea of a garden is about hope, possibilities and expectations for the reward of a bountiful harvest. This is also at the heart of Lincoln Central. Just as something will grow in our yards whether we garden or not, something will grow in our community-for better or worse-if left unattended. Like the gardener, a neighborhood must take responsibility for what it cultivates; it must mind its work, try to repel dangers, preserve what can be preserved, and eliminate what cannot succeed. Much like a gardener cultivates the soil and nurtures the seeds, the members of Lincoln Central help cultivate our community to create a lush, vibrant, living landscape.

 

At our May 30 Spring Event, we will be strengthening the roots of the next generation through the nourishment of entertainment, education and safety. It is our hope that we can help cultivate these children to grow strong in values and commitment to service so that when "harvest" time comes, they will be ripe for leadership in whatever community or organization they are planted in. We hope you'll join Lincoln Central Association to help us cultivate a bountiful future for our neighborhood. There's no better time to start than Saturday the 30th at Spring Zing. If it rains.....join us anyway; all gardens need rain.

 

From the heart,

P.S. I encourage you to learn more about Lincoln Central and the benefits we offer to our members and the contributions we make to your neighborhood-we need your support. Active participation in LCA is a truly rewarding experience. If you would like to learn more about LCA, help support our organization or provide suggestions to help us better serve the neighborhood, contact me at any time at kenneth@chicago.com.
New Plan For Lincoln Centre Well Received

Baker Development Corporation's responsiveness to neighborhood concerns over a previous plan to develop a mixed use project along N. Lincoln Avenue appears to have paid off. The revised plans for the proposed Lincoln Centre were well received at a community meeting held at the Apollo Theatre on Tuesday, May 26. The revised plans, which rotated the building to provide a less imposing streetscape along Lincoln Avenue, calls for 200 rental units as opposed to the 225 in Baker's prior plan. Additionally, the revised plans call for a larger setback at for the commercial space at street level. Neighbors hope the proposed project will serve as a catalyst to help revitalize a blighted stretch along N. Lincoln Avenue. Read more about Baker Development Corporation's revised plan.

Upcoming Events

Thursday, May 28
LCA Board Meeting

The public is always invited to LCA's Board meetings held the 4th Thursday of each month at 6:30 PM in the back room of the Marquee Lounge at Halsted and Armitage.

Saturday, May 30
2nd Annual Spring Zing

After the success of last year's event, LCA's second Spring Zing event is sure to be a must-attend event! Join us on May 30 for an afternoon of family fun. ( More Info)

Saturday, & Sunday May 30 & 31
1:00 PM to 7:00  PM
Lincoln Park Wine Festival 

Wine, smooth tunes, artisans and local culinary fare will take center stage at the INAUGURAL Lincoln Park Wine Fest in Jonquil Park. This urbane weekend happening will transform the park into a tranquil open-air market featuring tented wine and food pavilions and include ticketed wine tastings. Some 80-plus varietals will be showcased. 

Wine connoisseurs will also appreciate the on-site expertise of brand ambassadors and sommeliers. And enhancing the fest's ambience will be tasteful live music acts, food-wine pairings, the handiwork of fine artists, and the products/services of wine-related vendors. (More info)

Saturday, June 6

Support Your Local Market

 

Mark your calendar for Saturday, J une 6th. That's the day the Lincoln Park Farmer's Market opens in the LPHS parking lot. A gem for the Lincoln Central neighborhood, the market  features flowers for planting and arranging, vegetables of all kinds, pastry and bread vendors and so much more--even treats for the family pets.  "While the Green City Market definitely outdoes ours in size and scope, the Lincoln Park market is an easy walk and has vendors who've been with the market for so many years they've become part of the neighborhood," says LCA Vice President, Kathy Jordan.  The market is open on Saturdays from 7 am to 1 pm from June 6 through October. Give it a try.
Sunday, June 21
Sunday Summer Sipper
A Lincoln Central Garden Party
2:00PM to 5:00 PM

Join us in to soak in the beauty of Fire Station Park for an afternoon of conversation with your neighbors, delicious snacks and refreshing beverages. Stroll through the gardens and harvest the herbs we have grown for you.

Thursday, June 25
Business After Hours at Geja's Cafe

You are invited to a celebration of Chicago's most romantic restaurant and one of Lincoln Park's most well-known and established restaurants - Geja's Caf?. Join us in toasting 50 years of fondue at this Business After Hours. This event will include Geja's Caf?'s signature cheese and chocolate fondue, wine and more. (More info)

Saturday, June 27
Perennial's Vision at Fire Station Park

Come fill in the garden gaps with new perennials and learn about the native Illinois plants we have growing in the garden. (More Info)

Meet Lincoln Central!
Lincoln Central's board meetings are held on the 4th Thursday of each month. These meetings are an excellent opportunity to discuss issues of public interest and share upcoming community events. 

The Lincoln Central Zoning & Planning Committee meets on the 2nd Tuesday of each month with the goal of ensuring open and fair processes for developers and homeowners.

These meetings are open to the public and held at:

The Marquee Lounge
1973 N. Halsted Street
6:30 P.M. In the Back Room

We look forward to seeing you there!

Heart at play!

If you are ready for family fun, join us for Lincoln Central's 2nd annual Spring Zing, Saturday, May 30, 10 am to 1 pm, corner of North Lincoln Avenue and West Mohawk Street. This year the Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children's Hospital of Chicago and Kohl's Cares, the philanthropic arm of Kohl's Department Stores, have teamed up to serve as presenting sponsor of the event. Spring Zing will offer an amazing variety of fun and educational activities for all ages.


Whether you want information on bike maintenance and safety, family fitness, or our neighborhood's architectural heritage, Spring Zing is for you and your family.  If you're looking for fun for kids, Spring Zing will feature magical creations from noted balloon artist, A Real Mad Hatter, as well as face painting by special guest Queen Elsa from the Disney hit Frozen. Spring Zing brings together those opportunities, plus a chance for neighbors, families, and local merchants to interact in this community-focused event.  It's the single best way to welcome spring while enjoying a fun-filled, information-loaded event for you and your family. 


You won't want to miss out on the more than $2,000 in raffle prizes from such Chicago favorites as Gemini Bistro, Glasses, Ltd., Whole Foods, Taco Joint, Four Farthings, PilatesProWorks, Geja's Cafe, Navy Pier, Natural Elements Salon, Stella Barra, Green City Market, Summer House, Oz Animal Hospital, Gepperth's Market, Cafe Floriole and David's Tea.


Lincoln Central Association is deeply grateful to our Presenting Sponsor, Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children's and Kohl's Cares, the philanthropic arm of Kohl's Department  Stores; our Charter Sponsor, Debra Dobbs/@Properties; and our Participating Sponsors, Bridgeview Bank, Four Farthings, Hotel Lincoln, CityGrounds and Oz Animal Hospital. 


Please take a moment to let our raffle donors and event sponsors know you appreciate their support of Lincoln Central Association, the Heart of the Neighborhood. Without their generosity, we would be unable to host these neighborhood events.

Heart at Work in the Garden

Tomatoes and snap peas and lettuce, oh my! . . . herbs of all kinds, even a stray artichoke or two. All those and a lot more are planted and growing at the Fire Station Park. In the heart of the neighborhood--Larrabee just south of the Fire Station. The park is one of three that are projects of the Lincoln Central Association.


I t's a community garden for everyone in the neighborhood to enjoy," says Sally Drucker, LCA Board member and Chair of the LCA Parks Committee. "We want people to stop by and snip some herbs for a favorite recipe, and when the vegetables have ripened, we want them to come back again to enjoy some of our produce."

The vegetable gardens total 160 square feet of the Fire Station Park. Thanks to Sally and her neighborhood volunteers they are filled with wonderful treats to be enjoyed this summer and fall. Check the LCA website for more news and information about Fire Station Park.
LCA Volunteers-Heart at Work

 

Say Yes to Green Space

In 2008, a group of Lincoln Central residents, concerned about maintaining the scale of homes and back yard green space, came together to form LCA's Zoning and Planning Committee.  Since then that committee has been advocating projects that are built within the city code and that keep rear yards free of structures such as breezeways, raised yards, decks with no green space, secondary stairs and habitable space.

 

"As longtime residents, we know that back yard green space is welcome and necessary for light, air, trees, permeability and neighborliness," says Anne Moore, LCA Board member, Chair of the LCA Zoning and Planning Committee and Chicago journalist. "Our homes are set a few feet from each other so that we share the open, airy green space created by the required rear yard setback. It's the feature that sets us apart from other neighborhoods and cities.  When we look out our back windows, we see green. Having lived elsewhere, we consider these spaces urban treasure."

 

Developers often discount the value of green space and fill, or seek to fill, lots from front to back. Outdoor space is put on top of garages, which lack trees and their shade. "When builders and homeowners fill the space between the home and garage with structure," says Moore, "neighbors lose privacy and green."

 

How can you help?  If you're a homeowner, build within code. Rear yard open space is required by Chicago Zoning Code Section 17-2-0307. Keep your rear yard at grade and green, free of large structure. If you're a neighbor, object to requests from builders seeking variances that create front-to-back construction.

 

LCA's Planning and Zoning Committee meets the second Tuesday of each month. The committee welcomes neighbors seeking advice and help with zoning issues.

Finkl Proposal Goes Public

Proposed plans for the nearly 40-acre site that held the 112-year-old Finkl Steel Company were presented at a community forum on Wednesday, May 27, at Little Sisters of the Poor (Auditorium), 2325 N. Lakewood.

 

North Branch Works, a community development organization, received a $200,000 EPA grant to study the possibilities for the Finkl site. The group sponsored the forum as part of its effort to gather input from everyone, including local residents on a draft study of plans to enhance the value of the area by exploring issues related to business retention, job creation, livability and transportation.

 

LCA will continue to keep you posted new developments with this property. (Read More)