Friday, May 17, 2013

MAAF 2013: Changing It Up!

Summer is right around the corner and Chicago is gearing up for festival time – one of Chicago’s many summer highlights as almost every neighborhood hosts a festival for Chicagoans and visitors alike to get to know their respective communities.

Logan Square hosts the Milwaukee Avenue Arts Festival via I AM Logan Square along with our new partner this year, Land and Sea Dept. This year’s festival has a fresh new face with a new logo, new dates, and new festival layout. This year the Milwaukee Avenue Arts Festival (MAAF) will take place at the end of June instead of July. Save the dates in your calendar for June 28th through June 30th. In addition, the festival will take place in one contiguous place instead of three separate locations along Milwaukee Ave. This year the festival will be held on Milwaukee Avenue between Kedzie and Diversey keeping everything close so you won’t miss out on visiting any vendors, artists, or pop-ups.

This year’s initial participants include Bike Lane, Drug Factory Press, Elastic Arts, Fourth Is King, Green Bean Dayschool & Nursery, Hearty Tavern, The Logan Theater, Longman & Eagle, Lula Café, M. Fishman, Nothing Major, Nourishing Notes, Parson’s Chicken & Fish, Public Media Institute, Puerto Rican Arts Alliance, Puffs of Doom, The Rocking Horse, Saki Records, Sonnenzimmer, South Logan Arts Coalition, The Owl, Tito’s Handmade Vodka, Trailer Park Proyects and Threewalls. New participants are being added daily, and the full musical lineup will be announced shortly.

There are a few booth spaces left at $100 for independent artists and nonprofits. Sign up to share your artistic talents and/or the mission of your organization. Neighborhood businesses that would like a vendor space at the fest are highly encouraged to participate.  MAAF is offering a special discount of 25% off a booth space for neighborhood businesses. We want all of our neighbors to participate as this is a festival to showcase our community so new residents to Logan Square, those that hibernated during the winter, and residents of other communities can see and experience what Logan Square has to offer.

To request more information or sign up for booth space, please send an email to

Friday, February 1, 2013

Sustainably Delicious: The Chicago Diner Shares Their Story

Vegetarian, sustainable, eco-friendly – The Chicago Diner: Logan Square is green all-around while serving up deliciously vegetarian meals. Kat Barry has lots to share with you, Loganites, about the wonderful new diner in Logan Square.

April 2, 1983. In a city known for meat packing & hog butchering, a brave pair of optimistic vegetarians opened a ground breaking meat free eatery called The Chicago Diner. Since then, co-owners Mickey Hornick & Jo Kaucher, have built a reputation for wowing customers with unique and innovative dishes, changing minds about “The Way a Diner Should Be”. Eventually, they settled on the charming slogan “Meat Free Since ‘83”.

Despite its diminutive size, only seating 50 patrons, this tiny Diner has managed grand feats: garnishing Michelin Guide recommendations, Zagat ratings, ‘Best of’ recognition & reader’s choice accolades ‘til the cows come home, pun intended, from the likes of VegNews Magazine, The Chicago Reader, Vegetarian Times & WGN’s showcase: Chicago’s Best.

In November of 2012, having grown into a bustling destination spot, The Chicago Diner: Meat Free Since ’83, opened a second location in the Logan Square neighborhood at 2333 N. Milwaukee.

The Chicago Diner: Logan Square offers the same menu as Halsted Street, inventively recreating meatless American classic comfort foods like The Radical Reuben™, Buffalo Wingz, Mac & Cheeze, Burgers and Country Fried Steak as well as dairy free/trans fat free desserts & shakes from the in house bakery. The bar serves tap & bottled locally crafted beers and a dozen fancy cocktails featuring organic, small batch liquors.

The new spot takes sustainability to a new level: housed in a US Green Building Council LEED Gold certified facility, incorporating repurposed materials & fixtures throughout, as well as employing other Earth conscious initiatives like eco-friendly disposables; FSC & Rainforest Alliance certified menu paper; container & waste oil recycling; high efficiency appliances, lighting & HVAC systems.

Old meets new in the Chicago Diner: Logan Square, with classic but re-imagined meat free foods paired with reclaimed/vintage & eclectic furnishings in a modern efficient space. An eye opening experience all around in a hip & exciting neighborhood. No matter which meat free Chicago Diner one chooses, Lakeview or Logan, there’s a comforting feast in store.

Thanks so much!
- Kat Barry

The Chicago Diner
3411 N. Halsted
Cell: 412-735-2852

Monday, January 14, 2013

New Year, New Changes at Café Mustache

Café Mustache has done some revamping with their lineup of events and their menu. To start off, they have expanded their calendar of events to six days a week – Monday through Saturday. On Sundays, the café will close at 8pm. Café Mustache has events lined up such as live music gigs, DJ’s, and even a trivia night among others. In their efforts to provide a performance space and offer patrons a lively atmosphere, Wi-Fi will not be available after 8pm Monday through Saturday.

In addition, Café Mustache is increasing their selection of regional spirits and has changed up their menu to include food made with local ingredients. Check out their new menu and visit their website to attend an event.

I myself will be going by this week to get a taste of their vegetarian chili with avocado and their herbal tea, blood orange blend.


Monday, December 31, 2012

Three Ingredient Punch Combo for New Year’s Eve: Abe Lincoln, CTA, and MillerCoors

Take out those pesky pennies from your wallet, coat pocket, bottom of your car floor because they’ll come in handy tonight. The CTA is doing it again. Following tradition this time of year and keeping Chicagoan’s safety in mind, the CTA is providing their annual New Year’s Eve Penny Rides program.

This year, the program is sponsored by its first corporate sponsor, MillerCoors. “We’re thrilled to team with CTA to become a part of the Penny Rides tradition in Chicago,” said MillerCoors Chief Executive Officer Tom Long. “Our company is committed to working with communities to provide safe transportation alternatives. Drunk driving is completely preventable and we encourage all to plan ahead for a safe and memorable New Year’s Eve.”

Choose the safer and budget friendly route. Leave your cars parked, your bikes locked up, and hop on the CTA. No need to bring out your bus pass with you only to risk losing it on a night of drunken chaos. The penny rides will be honored from 10pm tonight until 4am tomorrow morning – New Year’s Day.

MillerCoors also commissioned an artist who created a display of penny art. The creative piece comprising of 8,000 pennies is located at the Clark/Lake CTA stop and will be up through New Year’s Eve. The artist commissioned is a mystery as his /her name isn’t mentioned in any press releases or MillerCoors’ website. If anyone knows who this mystery artist is please let me know!

-Gema Alonso
Sources:,, and

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Holiday Raffle: Enter to Win a Gift Basket Full of Local Goodies!

Do you enjoy the local shops and restaurants in Logan Square? I AM Logan Square sure does! Therefore, we want to share with you some of our favorite local goodies. Come in this month to enjoy dropshift’s exhibit, Memento, and make sure to stop by our info desk. There you can submit your contact information to enter into our raffle for a chance to win a gift basket full of great local goodies.

Items in the basket with goodies from our favorite local shops and restaurants will be kept a surprise until we announce a winner. The drawing will take place towards the end of the month. Once a drawing date is finalized, the last day to enter the raffle will be announced at least a day in advance. Good luck to all who enter!

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Memento by dropshift: Enchanting, Breathtaking, and Impressive

The opening night of Memento presented by dropshift dance was incredible. The ambience was filled with positive energy and anticipation. Everyone was wondering how were the dancers going to perform with such limited space? The constraint of the space turned into a constructive challenge for the dancers as they seized the opportunity to interact with the audience. Dancers Andrea Cerniglia, Weichiung “Coco” Chen, Colleen Welch, and Chelsea Harkelroad were captivating as they performed throughout the gallery. A few surprised audience members became part of the show and did a wonderful job as impromptu performers!

Before the performance began, fellow art enthusiasts enjoyed the beautiful artwork by visual artist Ashley Sullivan. The piece that is most remarkable was her screen-print of a CTA train on the tracks in the loop. The dominance of the color orange makes it pop and exudes urban drive. Come check it out before it’s too late. Ashley printed an edition of 45 and only has 10 left!

Dance/film artist Nadia Oussenko’s short film vignettes are impressive. One film in particular evokes the feeling of a location set abroad, yet the shoot took place in our very own backyard of Chicago – at a beautiful pavilion down by the lake near Fullerton.

Such a collaboration between dance, film, and visual art attracted many arts supporters and even journalistic coverage! Allison Friedman, a journalism graduate student from Northwestern, came out to the opening reception to experience Memento and learn more about I AM. Her piece on our event will be posted on our website as soon as it becomes available.

The food provided by our sponsor D’Noche was delicious as always and beer was provided by our sponsor Beck’s Beer. If you missed out on the opening reception, come out to the gallery on the designated dates for pop-up performances. The next one takes place this Wednesday, Dec. 12th from 5pm to 7pm.

About dropshift dance

dropshift is an emerging modern dance company led by artistic director Andrea Cerniglia, a member of the Chicago dance scene since 2002. The group works through a rigorous process of studio investigation to make work that energizes the space and creates an environment for the performer and viewer. Using specific directives of quality, imagery, and trajectory, dropshift creates movement environments that allow the viewer an opportunity to connect with what is abstract by layering the physical experience with one that is human and authentic.


Thursday, November 29, 2012

I AM Logan Square’s December Gallery Opening: Memento by dropshift

I AM Logan Square is hitting off the month of December in partnership with dropshift dance for their exhibit, Memento. Visual artist Ashley Sullivan and dance film artist Nadia Oussenko worked together with dropshift dance to do an exhibit that “explores themes of memory distortion, perception, and recall, translated through the mediums of movement, short film vignettes, and graphic screen print design as well as painting on paper and canvas” as artistic director Andrea Cerniglia describes. Hence, this collaboration gave birth to the name of the exhibit, Memento.

The opening night of the exhibit is on Thursday, December 6th from 6pm to 9pm. Performances will take place and consist of solo and couples dances. Our gallery sponsors D’Noche and Beck’s will provide food and beer. If you haven’t tried D’Noche’s scrumptious croquetas and empanandas, this is your opportunity all while experiencing a dance performance and great ambience with fellow art lovers alike. 

Pop-up performances will take place throughout the month. Please check out the calendar below and mark your calendar to come check us out!

You can also come get a sneak peak this Saturday, Dec. 1st for Holiday on the Square as the gallery will be open from 10:30am to 6:30pm for you to view the visual art. A dance performance will take place from 1pm to 2pm.


About dropshift dance

dropshift is an emerging modern dance company led by artistic director Andrea Cerniglia, a member of the Chicago dance scene since 2002. The group works through a rigorous process of studio investigation to make work that energizes the space and creates an environment for the performer and viewer. Using specific directives of quality, imagery, and trajectory, dropshift creates movement environments that allow the viewer an opportunity to connect with what is abstract by layering the physical experience with one that is human and authentic.

Gallery Hours for dropshift: Memento

December 2012

                 Mon.          Tues.              Wed.               Thurs.                Fri.                        Sat.

Gallery Opening
Open: 1-5pm
Performance:           2-4pm
Open: 4-8pm
Performance:           5 – 7pm
Open: 4-8pm
Open: 4-8pm
Performance:          5 -7pm
Open: 1-5pm
Open: 4-8pm
Performance:  5 – 7pm
Open: 4-8pm
5 – 7pm
*By Appointment Only
*By Appointment Only
*By Appointment Only
*For an appointment, please contact Ashley Sullivan via email at: