By Sandy Goldman
The Rogers Park Community
Sometime in June, Forum 49 inaugurated a community chat
room/web site for neighborhood discussion. It is very exceptional, professional
and well organized. I can't wait for the local political campaigns to begin.
Check it out at http://www.forum49.org/ (do it when you are done here!!)
- E-mailer extraordinaire and
computer guru Dave Lawrence seems to have taken the position as
information message conductor for Rogers Park. Beware Dave, of an ancient
civilization ritual; to wit, if you don't like the message,
- Several people lectured about
the need for a Block Club Organization Network. A good idea! But why do I
think I see the reinvention of the wheel. It ran flat several years ago
because most Block Clubs are single issue oriented with a limited amount
of energy and a small scope of geography.
- D. Lawrence and M. Harrington
carried on a spirited E-course on the responsibilities of community
involvement; the latter calling for a Rogers Park Strategic Planning
Session. Rather than more talk-talk, I would direct everyone's attention
to the long range plan entitled Rogers Park in the Year 2000,
directed, edited and prepared by Michael J. Realmuto and others in
January, 1996. It was developed from the results of a several years of
extensive and exhaustive community meetings. Perhaps the Rogers Park
Community Council still has copies.
- There was positive response
to the many requests for volunteer workers and helpers to build the
playground at Gale School. It was successful and a job well done. It is a
good-looking playground with interesting equipment. It is also an example
of a community achieving a goal and working together. Lets look at it in
five years or maybe three years or when the first child is injured and the
legal eagles fly in.
- All-Star community activist
Lorraine Dostal concludes her answer to an inquiry about the Safe Passages
Project with "I fear that I have an opinion---". Welcome
Lorraine, current committee person of RP 2000 (a publication of the new
Rogers Park Community Council), to the "Opinion Club" from Sandy
Goldman former Editor in Chief of the same publication. But be careful
Lorraine, you know what happens to people with strong opinions. In any
event imitation is the sincerest form of flattery.
- On 8-27 A.G Kerr relates in his
e-mail that he had his day in court after being severely beaten up while
walking on the street near the lake. The assailant was a no show.
Surprise!!! The judge issued a bench warrant for $10,000.If he should ever
be seen. Who rents to people like this miscreant and what kind of
neigborhood attracts them? Where did this guy really live and where does
he live now?
- There was a serious amount of
criticism and defense of Community Alternative Policing Strategy (CAPS).
Some think that it works great. Some think that it is a sham. No matter
which side you take, it has become the Mayor's greatest public relations
campaign. If you do not think so, tune into channel 23. In prototype area
Rogers Park, of the nine police beats, there are few where anything significant
is accomplished. The big exception is Beat 2422 where Karen Hoover would
have excelled anyway. Competent policemen have always cooperated with
citizens. The others have always ignored the community and still do!
- Then there is the District
Advisory Committee (DAC). Oh, I don't think I want to get into that. It is
totally useless. It has not operated effectively, efficiently or
purposefully since Father White left the presidency to be followed through
the years by many others.
- There was a flurry of E-mail
activity concerning the Sam Leone Jr. Guard program at Touhy beach and the
possible demolition of the headquarters building and reassignment of the
program to Loyola Park. For those new to the community the Sam Leone Jr.
Guard program is a seventy-five year old (or perhaps more) R.P institution
which has served boys and girls as a summer water sports program. It is
also a training ground for city lifeguards. Its fame has spread nationwide
as alumni move to other areas and in some cases develop similar programs.
For more information consult a newly published book titled "Sam's
Boys" by Chris Serb a former junior guard and a R.P resident.
The last word from Alderman Moore (49th) was that
the Park District has assured him that there were no such plans and that they
would notify him of any future plans, which might include renovation. Others
involved are Senator Carol Ronen and State Rep. Harry Osterman who attended the
The president of the Sam Leone Alumni Assoc. is
Pat Colleran (e-mail: email@example.com). He welcomes all help.
Click here to download Ald. Moore's
reassuring letter to Carol Goldman.
- Correspondent Michael
Harrington pens an eloquent drama about the mugging of his nest door
neighbor Frank at 1608 Sherwin last August .It has been given great
distribution including the Lerner paper. In case you missed it you may
access it at www.forum49.org/. Then ask yourself a lot of questions.
Watch how everybody blames everybody else for the
slow response of the police. Alderman Moore (49th) together with
representatives from the above-mentioned DAC, the new RPCC and Comdr.
Boggs (24th) indicate "that upon review of the tapes" the fault lies
with the response time from the dispatcher at the new $300 million 911 system.
Yeah-right!! We used to hear the same music when it was only a $90 million
facility at some other location. Is it pin the tail on the donkey or a game of
- Citizen Jeanne Stiles calls
for more upscale establishments in R.P. She suggests in her
e-mail---"maybe a branch of Rezas---a high end workout facility like
the Cheetah Gym in Andersonville along with a juice bar, health food store
and a workout clothing store---maybe a Sport Mart---a nursery like
Gethsemane---a Discovery Center---a Piano Bar/wine bar---Police outpost on
Howard street to make sure all the new stores are safe---Kinko's or some
other office supply/fax service---a deli, think how successful Belden Deli
was (her words not mine-editors note)---an optical shop---a butcher shop on
the order of Bornhofers---a candy shop---individual professional
Jeannie Stiles' dreams may be accessed at
www.forum49.org/. Do I see a candidacy??
By the way to Jeanne and all the others who agree
with her, if you would like to see when such things WERE in R.P pick up a l960
or l970 yellow pages telephone book. Those types of business and many more were
here before a lot of social engineering took place and before the
administration of the past and present Progressive Democratic 49th Ward leadership.
- By way of Dave Lawrence
(caps-rp@Northwestern.Edu), Ald. Joe Moore (49th) addresses the e-mail
clucking concerning the Urban Investment Trust development for the S.E
corner of Howard and Ashland. He states that he ís not privy to Urban's
day to day marketing efforts---nor is he an expert on urban retailing. He
then explains the difficulty Urban has in securing major tenants for R.P.
This he says duplicates his difficulty in his efforts to attract a
Walgreen Drug store.
He is not, he says, a commercial real estate
broker, but that he has attempted to bring business people and store owners to
R.P throughout his nine years in office.
I encourage all readers to read this offering and
make up your own minds. It can be accessed at www.forum49.org/ and then to the
Over The Back Fence link.
- And finally I wonder how Joan
Rivers would have begun her standup comedy routine in the age of the Internet?
"Can we talk" would not work. Can we e-mail? No, that does not
do it. Oh well, some things must fall in the path of progress.
...And that's my opinion.
And I'm Sandy Goldman
me your e-mail address or those of others who would be interested and I'll add
them to my rapidly growing distribution list.
To Email Me: firstname.lastname@example.org