Monday, August 31, 2009

Tannourin Bakery
4806 N Kedzie Ave
Chicago, IL 60625-5207

D.A.C monthly meeting tonight

where: 17th District Community room, 4650 N Pulaski

when: 7pm- 9pm

call the CAPS office at 312-742-4588 for more information.

Sunday, August 30, 2009

a rabbit dinner

My boyfriend and I cooked a whole rabbit the other day for dinner. As an Eastern European, I've eaten rabbit plenty of times (when visiting back home), but my boyfriend had not. We got the rabbit from Aden Live Poultry, which is across the river, technically not "Albany Park", but close enough.

Aden's is a butcher shop that slaughters live animals, something surprising to see in Chicago. The shop has been open for 3 months, and the owner Abbas Aldafri says business has been very good. Aldafri says he opened his own butcher shop after working at the one a couple doors down. On the window of the shop are three images of cute bunnies, pictures he clearly got from the internet. Aldafri says his most popular item is chicken (about 70% of his sales) and he was kind enough to explain the taste and cooking difference in the white and brown chicken he offers. You can read more about our experience at Aden's (including picking out the rabbit) here.

As for the rabbit, it took two hours to cook and was delicious. I ate dinner slowly, thinking about the taste and any similarities or differences with chicken. After having seen the animal I wanted to take my time with it's meat. We made potatoes and stuffing to compliment. We still have the back legs for sandwiches and all the organs- which we will make pate with, or feed to the cats. Recipe and instructions courtesy of Google.


Thursday, August 27, 2009

CAPS meeting

CAPS meeting tonight, for district 17, beat 1713. The meeting goes from 7 pm- 8pm, at 5000 N Spaulding, North Park University.

Monday, August 24, 2009

I went to the Greekfest and all I got were…

The Greek fries. But, before I even got myself to the Greek Fest, there was much to be said about it – by others, not me.

“If you’ve been to one Greek fest, you’ve been to them all,” a friend said. She told me to expect 2 rides—a Tilt-a-whirl and a swing ride. Sure enough, both were there.

“Greek food is the best! The Greeks really know how to cook,” said another. This also proved to be true.

It was a perfect weekend for the event, even though Saturday was a bit chilly. I wandered over on Sunday afternoon, to find the event in full swing! Tents with freshly baked baklava and spanakopita were ready to go. As was the food tent with a wide selection of Greek foods, including gyros, authentic pistachio plates, and Greek fries, which is what I settled on. Of course, I could not pass up the baklava and some Greek coffee.

The church staff said all the food was freshly prepared by the church elders. There was no doubt in my mind as the baklava could not have tasted more fresh. The Greek coffee, even on a warm day was a perfect accompaniment.

What made this festival stand out from the 60 thousand other Chicago festivals was not only the fresh food, but the vendors. Inside the church, the vendors were unlike any other festival vendors. Local businesses and home business dominated the room. Of course, I did my part to supported the current economy and any local business that I could by buying gifts—for myself and others. The most notable vendors were the guy who made signs hand-carved in oak and the lady selling the blown glass jewelry from Italy.

Overall, Albany Park is lucky to host such a fun, little festival!


abandoned building on Montrose, between Monticello and Lawndale.

Courtesy of Mr. Montrose

"Movies in the Park" event tonight

"Ghostbusters" is playing at 8:30pm tonight at River Park.

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Garage Sale

Where: 2613 W. Lawrence.

Time: Saturday; 9am- 3pm, Sunday; 9am - 12pm

Friday, August 21, 2009

Free things to do in the neighborhood this weekend:

St. Demetrios Greek Orthodox Church is having their annual Greek fest. The festival goes all weekend, starting at 5pm on Friday and Saturday, and noon on Sunday. The Northside Chicago Rock n Roll band is playing on Friday night, and the John Linardakis Band will be performing on Saturday and Sunday. Expect clowns, games and rides. St. Demetrios Greek Orthodox Church is located at 2727 W Winona and free parking is available at Swedish Covenant.

Rokko & The Hat is performing at 7pm on Sunday night, at Horner Park (just south of Montrose).

The Swimming Pool Project Space has a new exhibit by Lisa Majer. The space is only open on Sundays, from 1pm - 5pm.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

And the winner is.....

Dawali Mediterranean Kitchen has the honored distinction of serving the best falafel in Chicago, courtesy of Metromix.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

33rd Ward 2016 Olympic Bid Community Forum Tomorrow

Medill Reports: The Armory Chicago Mini Doc. from Armory Chicago on Vimeo.

Luncheon with Congressman Quigley

US Representative Mike Quigley, of the 5th Congressional District of Illinois, is having a luncheon tommorrow at La Villa Restaurant, located at 3632 N. Pulaski Road. The Lunch costs $25 for non-members of the Albany Park Chamber of Commerce, and goes from 11:30pm to 1pm.

Call Liz at (773) 478- 0202 x 12 to reserve your seat.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

3 Albany Park spots in the running......

Vote for your favorite falafel place on Metromix (Chicago Tribune) here. Voting closes Wednesday.

(so far, it looks like Dawali is winning with 57% of the vote!!!)

Monday, August 17, 2009

Register for classes at your local park today!

Registration for Fall Chicago Park District classes opened today- with prices for classes ranging from free, to $120 depending on the type of class. All parks are offering some sort of soccer, basketball and arts and crafts for youngsters, and go from September 21st to December 6th. Some highlights:

Eugene Field Park has a Step Aerobics, Drawing and Painting, and Stained Glass class for adults.

Gomper's Park is offering a Badminton and Walking Club for adults.

Horner Park has a Handbuilding, Piano, Mosaics, Woodcraft, and Sign Language class for adults.

Jensen Park is offering a Table Tennis class for adults,

(and the best for last),

River Park is offering an Oil Painting class for adults for $25.

To register or browse all classes go here.

Online registration ends September 7th, but if you're interested in a class, register now rather than later as the classes tend to fill up quickly.

Saturday, August 15, 2009

New Art Exhibit

Albany Park's sole gallery, the Swimming Pool Project Space, has a new art exhibit opening tomorrow featuring Lisa Majer's paintings. You can read all about Majer's work on the Swimming Pool Project Space website. (The gallery is only open on Sundays from 1- 5pm.)

Family Block Party Picnic TODAY

Time: 10am - 6pm

Where: River Park, enter at 4900 N Whipple St

Who: West River Park Association, Evelyn G Zaar

Free Lunch: BBQ ribs, chicken and hot dogs, and pink lemonade and free bottled water for the elderly. (Other drinks are 50 cents.) Watermelon will be served for dessert, free, and attendees are encouraged to bring side dishes to share.

Games for children include organized football, soccer, and a pinata.


Friday, August 14, 2009

Last night, a hundred people lugged food, blankets and lawn chairs to Ronan Park to hear the free concert, the last in the summer concert in the park series. Picante, originally scheduled to play on a rainy July 23rd, entertained families, couples, children, and dogs. Picante is described as a world-latin-jazz ensemble, with rhythms taken from Africa, Cuba, Puerto Rico, Brazil, and Jamaica among others, a fitting choice for the denizens of Albany Park. The quiet murmer in the crowd between songs spoke of Arabic, African, Spanish, Korean and Eastern European.

Picante's finale involved a conga line through the park. Emiliya Angelova, 29, and her 15 month old baby were among those swept up by dancing. Angelova became hooked after her first concert this summer and plans on coming back next year. Recently from Bulgaria, Angelova says "The music is nice." Brad, who lives in Uptown, discovered the weekly concert when he came here last week with a friend to drink by the river. Says Brad, "These guys were good, they're all skilled musicians, but the guys last week were playing Veracruz. I've always liked that type of music, and I had forgotten about it, and when I heard it last week it just clicked in my brain"

August 13th was the last night of the summer concert series in Ronan Park, courtesy of the North River Comission and the Chicago Park District. You can watch videos of this summers events here.


Thursday, August 13, 2009

Here are some sites that moniter crime and upcoming events in Albany Park.

...and the Chicago Tribune published a story on the expansion of Ronan Park here.


Now that the chain link fence is down, cars park in the newest addition to Ronan Park for brief periods of time.

Besides the ice cream cart-vendors, there is an ice cream truck that frequents this area. This ice cream truck plays "Do your ears hang low?" and makes his last round of the neighborhood between 9:30pm and 10:00pm. The song is creeping into my dreams.


Monday, August 10, 2009

new albany park pizza-

Combining Noli's and Dawali leftovers makes a fantastic pizza.

Take a Noli's pepporoni pizza, and pour Lamb Galaya (a tomato based skillet) on top, put it in the oven for a couple minutes and voila! Albany Park pizza. Delicious.


Friday, August 7, 2009

Love has no age.

To the pretty young Muslim girl being hit on by the balding, overweight pale man,

You should not lift your skirt when talking to people on the street. Even when your mother is not looking.


Wednesday, August 5, 2009

I called it!

That empty lot off Lawrence and Sacramento was purchased by the city last Friday, and will be used to expand Ronan Park.

According to an article on Chi-Town Daily News from last year, Ronan park could see some new park entrances and a rerouted walking path.


Monday, August 3, 2009

A fellow named Ian Sklarsky had his tires slashed, windows smashed, and ipod stolen while he was away on vacation. You can watch him talk about it here, as well as some unrelated Albany Park topics.

There have been improvements-

The documentary "The Heart Broken in Half" features Albany Park. You can watch the first part here. The documentary was originally released in 1990 on vhs, and the DVD release was just last year.

Sunday, August 2, 2009

who knows....

The chain link fence around the empty lot on Sacramento and Lawrence has been removed. Are they finally going to start construction on that planned apartment building?

They should really use the land to expand Ronan Park, as buildings close to the river seem to be slanted or sinking (but this could also be because they are old... ), and the river stinks more often than not.

Some history on the park here.