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I've lived in Rogers Park since moving here more than a decade ago. And I have to say, despite the Cheetos plague, the theft of both a bike and a beater car, and the hideous street art (one result of the ward's participatory budgeting effort), I love the place. In 2003, primarily to get a taste of city life—I'd never lived in a place that had aldermen before, not to mention 50—I volunteered for Alderman Joe Moore's reelection campaign. One of the things I learned is that a prerequisite for running for office in Chicago is the ability to go gloveless while shaking hands in subzero temperatures.
Joe's perhaps best known for the controversial (and since repealed) City Council ordinance banning foie gras, but within the ward I think he's made his name through quirky and, to my mind, endearing community outreach efforts like "Follow Me Fridays," where he invites constituents to join him for food and drink at a neighborhood business—last week it was at the El Famous Burrito on Clark Street.
The Glenwood Sunday Market he played big role in founding has been a huge hit, so much so that there's a winter version; this year's launches this Sunday, November 13, from 9 AM to 2 PM at 6956 N. Glenwood, next to the Glenwood. In addition to fave vendors like Bennison's Bakery, Montalbano Farms, Stamper Cheese, and Sweet Attila's, there will be a special guest vendor: Puffs of Doom, trading in organic cream puffs, both savory and sweet.
But the event that may just take the cake is tomorrow's Unwind: A Pub Crawl, touted by the 49th Ward newsletter as the nation's only combined crawl and knitting circle. That's right, knitting circle: Lindsey Obermeyer from the Red Thread Project will be on hand offering free knitting lessons and supplies. Other participants include Act One Cafe, Chuckies, Duke's Bar, the Glenwood, the Buffalo Bar at the Heartland Cafe, and Morseland; all will provide food for those crawling and/or knitting. Wristbands, which are just ten bucks, will be available at the Rogers Park Business Office, 1448 W. Morse, beginning at 2:30 PM.