As you make your 2014 year-end contributions, please consider supporting SOAR's annual appeal. Your monetary support and volunteer hours are truly appreciated. In this holiday season, we at SOAR are ever thankful for you, our most cherished resource! We are excited about 2015 as we will be celebrating our 40th Anniversary! We will also be taking over the Farmers Market at the MCA Plaza in 2015 which will be a large undertaking as we wanted to ensure the Farmers Market would continue as it is so popular with the community! Many exciting upcoming initiatives and opportunities but we need everyone’s help.
Donations can be made by mail or by clicking here. SOAR is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization. Your contribution is tax deductible to the fullest extent of the law.
More than a hundred people are now involved in the hour-long Streeterville Walks, which begin at 7:00pm every Monday and Thursday (weather permitting) at the meeting point: Fairbanks between Erie and Huron. Weather alerts, routes and other instant alerts are now posted on Facebook. You must first have a free Facebook account to receive and post comments. To sign up for Facebook.To become a Facebook Friend search for SOAR Streeterville Walks or click here to link to the group page.
The crowd was large and lively, everyone seemingly as ageless as the guest of honor, Chicago icon Dutchie Caray, celebrating her 85th birthday with more than 300 friends, family members and Streeterville neighbors at the Chicago Sports Museum at Water Tower Place. The August 6 event, SOAR's "Streeterville 7th Inning Stretch," was co-sponsored by the Museum and Harry Caray's 7th Inning Stretch--both located on the 7th Floor of Water Tower Place. Thanks to Grant DePorter, CEO of Harry Caray's Restaurant Group, and his partners, the entire evening was a festive tribute to Dutchie, the widow of one of the most memorable figures in Chicago sports history.
Everyone's vim, vigor and vitality were enhanced by the plentiful and delicious buffet and passed cuisine prepared and passed by Joe Rosetti, Executive Chef at Harry Caray's 7th Inning Stretch, and his staff. The plentiful bar, which included wine and soft drinks, featured a punch especially formulated for the party-goers. Choosing from among the wide variety of luscious Eli's Cheesecake flavors was difficult and many dessert lovers opted for a sampling of two or more.
Water Tower Place and five of its generous tenants contributed gifts to the evening's raffle. They included Water Tower Place: $100 gift card; Harry Caray's 7th Inning Stretch (Level 7): $100 gift certificate; CHICO'S (Level 3): $25 gift card plus a jewelry set (Retail value = $100); SEE Eyewear (Level 2): $350 gift certificate; The Art of Dr. Seuss Gallery (Level 2 ): Limited edition Dr. Seuss print, "If Santa Could Do It, The So Could The Grinch," (Retail value = $225); and Campus Colors (Level 7): $100 Gift Card.
There were six lucky winners for the raffle prizes but no one went home empty-handed. Everyone received an incredible Water Tower Place goodie bag containing special offers, products and information from the six raffle participants.
Aglow from the start of the party to past its announced end time, Dutchie was constantly in motion, thrilled to greet old friends and meet new ones. When SOAR President Gail Spreen, Grant DePorter and Katie Lindsay, marketing manager of Water Tower Place, accompanied her at the Museum's recreation of "Harry Caray's Broadcast Booth"--they called up the family of a friend of hers, the late and beloved balladeer, Jimmy Damon, to lead in singing "Happy Birthday." Dutchie's eyes teared up when she spotted her old friends, Marc and Maureen Schulman, and her birthday cake, custom baked by the Schulman family's Eli's Cheesecake. Then the crowd spontaneously sang the Caray Anthem, otherwise known as "Take Me Out to the Ballgame." NBC5's anchors signed off their 10 o'clock newscast with a sentiment communicated all evening, "Happy Birthday, Dutchie. We love you!"
Left photo, left to right, Maureen Schulman, Marc Schulman, Dutchie Caray, Grant DePorter. Right photo, left to right, Katie Lindsay, Gail Spreen, Dutchie Caray, Grant DePorter.
On June 4, 2014, a Community Meeting was held to present an updated Streeterville Neighborhood Plan (SNP) hosted by the Sheraton Chicago Hotel & Towers. The Plan was presented by the SOAR Streeterville Neighborhood Plan Task Force with representatives from Chicago’s Department of Transportation and Planning Department (CDOT) who provided additional perspective and insight.
The Streeterville Plan is an update to the breakthrough strategic plan launched in 2005. Gail Spreen, President of SOAR emphasized that the SNP was in a draft stage and encouraged the 100 plus attendees to share their comments and ideas about the Plan during the meeting and also provide additional commentary and insights by going online to the Streeterville Neighborhood Plan feedback page.