Message from the President: Summer in the City

Bob Johnson, Deborah Gershbein,
Commander Paul Bauer
Chicago is a great place to be in the summer months. Streeterville is at the top of the list with its many local attractions: the Lakefront, Chicago River, Navy Pier, Parks, and Michigan Avenue, just to name a few. We also enjoy many wonderful restaurants, cultural attractions, world-class shopping and, of course, the SOAR Farmers Market and SOAR Gardens at Lake Shore Park. SOAR works to keep Streeterville one of the very best neighborhoods in Chicago. While so many residents and visitors are enjoying the season, SOAR continues to fulfill its mission to preserve, promote and enhance the quality of life and community everyday. How does SOAR participate in doing this? We have a committed Board of Directors Task Force Committees and volunteers that work on behalf of the neighborhood in many different ways. We keep a close eye on neighborhood activities to ensure that they are appropriate for residents and visitors. If we see a potential problem, we don't hesitate to speak up. We take our responsibilities quite seriously. For example, we recently contacted Alderman Brendan Reilly with regard to keeping Streeterville safe and sound (see the story below.)
Streeterville is a community of over 30,000 residents who share this densely populated area with visitors, businesses, institutions, recreational attractions and retail establishments. In order to make certain that balance is maintained in this mixed-use community, it is essential that SOAR remain the voice of residents to build and celebrate community. We thank our members for your loyal support! If you are not a member yet, please take the time to renew (click here) or join today (click here).  Enjoy the summer!
As always, I will be happy to hear your ideas and respond to your questions and comments when you reach me at
Deborah Gershbein
SOAR Position Statements
The SOAR Board of Directors recently sent letters to Alderman Brendan Reilly (Ward 42) regarding safety issues in South Streeterville. The first pertains to securing the underpass at Ohio Street, following recent fatal gun violence. The second, which was directed to Local Liquor Control Commissioner Shannon Trotter, objects to granting a tavern license to a prospective establishment with a history of abuse of the privilege. Click here to read the letters. Your comments are welcome at  Click here for a link to an article in DNAInfo
THIS JUST IN..........  We just received additional correspondence from Alderman Reilly updating Streeterville residents about the latest information about Firewater Saloon and their recent community meeting where they failed to invite SOAR or the Alderman. Please click here to read the letter.



Opening Celebration and Chef Demo

The Opening Was Grand! The SOAR Farmers Market 2017 Season Grand Opening and Ribbon Cutting Ceremony was held on June 20 on the Plaza of the MCA (Museum of Contemporary Art.) Debby Gershbein, President of SOAR, Terry DeGuzman, Chief Operating Officer of the MCA, and Alderman Brian Hopkins (Ward 2) welcomed the crowd of shoppers and thanked representatives of this year's sponsoring organizations. Terry remarked on the positive sense of community motivated by the Market. Alderman Hopkins pointed out that, about 65 miles from Streeterville's urban center, farmers are growing the produce, flowers and ingredients for prepared food offered at the Market. Some of the Farmers for this market drive over 2 hours to and from their farms to offer farm fresh produce for shoppers. Following the ribbon-cutting Marc and Maureen Schulman and their staff served complimentary slices of a custom-designed Eli's Cheesecake. 
Opening Ceremony
©2017. Sarah Matheson Photography. All Rights Reserved.
Putting It Together The first Chef Demonstration of the season on June 27 featured Bistronomic chef Martial Noguier, who creatively combined a variety of fresh ingredients sourced from the Market's local farmers including Nichols Farms and Bennison's Bakery. Chef Noguier pleased the crowd with his fresh pea & Capriole goat cheese tart with summer vegetables.The recipe can be found on our website here.  
Join us on Tuesday, July 11, when Chef Ricardo Jarquin, Travelle at the Langham Hotel, will be on "center stage" at the SOAR Information Tent.

With the exception of next Tuesday, the July 4th National Holiday, the Market will be held from 7:00 am to 2:00 pm through October 31. For a complete list of vendors click here go to here For a look at the farmers' seasonal produce and floral selections at the Market, click here. Don't forget to keep up with Farmers Market news on our Facebook page and website. Stop by the SOAR Information Tent to say hello to SOAR volunteers and sponsor representatives when you are shopping. To volunteer contact Office Manager Carole Thomas    
We Nourish Community!



Safety and Sound Management in Streeterville

Safety in Our Streets The SOAR Board of Directors supports recommendations proposed by Alderman Brendan Reilly (Ward 42) following the shooting on East Ohio in the early morning of Sunday, June 18. Read the story here.  We are in touch with the Alderman and with Chicago Police District Commander Paul Bauer regarding these steps and others that might be taken with regard to overall safety in our community. 
Fire Safety As representatives of one of the most successful downtown high-rise communities in the world, SOAR offers condolences to the survivors and families of the victims who lived in Grenfell Tower in West London. In light of that tragedy, the following safety tips are recommended by the NFPA (National Fire Protection Association)
  • Get to know your building
  • Get to know your building manager
  • Keep your residence fire safe
  • Should you stay or evacuate? In non-combustible buildings, fires are more likely to be contained to a unit or space.  If the fire is not in your unit, you are usually instructed to stay in your unit, if possible, and call 9-1-1
  • Do not use elevators!
  • Search "high-rise fire safety tips" online to read about detailed specifics

SOAR Social Wednesday at Coco Pazzo Café

Coco Pazzo Café recently moved from its longtime location on St. Clair to 212 E. Ohio, just east of Michigan Avenue. Jack Weiss and the staff took with them the name, the murals, the warmth and hospitality and the best of the menu choices. The restaurant hosted more than 80 appreciative SOAR members at a reception on March 8. Thanks a million, and best of luck in the new location. Here are some of the event-goers:
Marco Villavicencio, Jack Weiss, Debby Gershbein, David Hampe
JoAnne and Howard Melton, Michael and Amy Kraynak
Lisa Robertson, Mary Alex Japczyk, Kim Lawson, Bobbi Meyers 
Minglei Blumenthal, John Keefe

Alderman Hopkins Town Hall News

Alderman Brian Hopkins took the opportunity to make major announcements to more than 150 Streeterville residents and other stakeholders at the 2nd Ward/Streeterville Town Hall. The event was held on Tuesday, February 7, at Hilton Chicago Magnificent Mile Suites. Following are highlights from his presentation. Complete coverage will run in next week's SOAR eNews, scheduled to deliver on Thursday, February 23.

Moderator Charlie Wojciechowski and Alderman Brian Hopkins

*  Softball league playing at Lake Shore Park will be relocated to other City parks in order to better serve the needs of the community. Alderman Hopkins recognized the efforts of the Lake Shore Park Advisory Council and its President David Kostelansky, that contributed to the Chicago Park District Commissioners' decision.


Charlie Wojciechowski-NBC Channel 5, Heather Gleason-Chicago Park District,
Deborah Gershbein-SOAR, Alderman Brian Hopkins, John Chikow-The Magnificent Mile Association, Commander Paul Bauer-Chicago Police Department

*  State Representative Christian Mitchell (26th District) introduced a bill to strengthen penalties for motorcycle riders who exceed speed and noise regulations. The bill also calls for reducing emergency vehicle siren noise throughout the state. To read more click here. Representative Mitchell can be reached at 773.924.1755 or via his website.

*  Looking ahead long range, Alderman Hopkins showed the latest renderings for the proposed revitalization of Lake Shore Drive, including eliminating the curve at East Lake Shore Drive and developing land for recreation. For more information click here.