When we care for the community, we're caring for the future. And the future--in the form of the Next Generation--came out to participate in SOAR's Clean Up Day on Saturday, April 18. Children today have a heightened awareness of being responsible stewards of the environment. We like to think that children helped drive parents and grandparents to the special event, which attracted a record number of participants on a record-setting beautiful day. We joined community partners Alderman Bob Fioretti and his family/staff (Ward 2), the Seneca and Lake Shore Park Advisory Council and our own Lake Shore Park Garden Club to organize and implement this annual citywide celebration of community. Special thanks to Do-Rite Donuts for figuratively transporting volunteers and to Chicago Trolley for literally transporting volunteers and tools all around the neighborhood (and gathering dozens of filled garbage bags to be picked up by the City), to SOAR Board members and staff, and to my staff at Streeterville Properties. We are proud to put a spring shine on Streeterville! Gail Spreen
SOAR members and friends were bowled over, well fed and proclaimed "That's Italian!" as they triumphed in the bocce courts at Pinstripes on March 4. The team at the new upscale dining and entertainment center on Illinois Street couldn't have been warmer on another cold night in Streeterville. Thanks to founder-CEO Dale Schwartz and the entire Pinstripes team for hosting this "Midwinter Social"--or, as President Gail Spreen preferred to think about it, this "End-of-Winter Social!"
Below, and on the SOAR Gallery, are visual mementos of the occasion.
When Dale Schwartz was a little boy growing up in Cleveland, he spent every Saturday afternoon bowling with his friends and siblings at Pepper Lanes. "It was good, old-fashioned fun," said the founder and CEO of Pinstripes, newly opened in Streeterville. "I bowled through college, sometimes on dates. It was recreational bowling and I can't claim any special talent. But I never forgot the enjoyment and the camaraderie of it."
The memory was so profound that Schwartz nearly brought it to life shortly after earning his M.B.A. degree at Harvard. With a couple of friends, he nearly bought a bowling alley in Manhattan. "Although bowling had fallen out of fashion, I had the idea of resurrecting bowling from the stereotypical alleys and leagues and creating an upscale version of the game I loved as a child. It was then that I came up with a name for the concept that suggested both sophistication and nostalgia: Pinstripes."
But it was 25 years later-after successful forays into running innovative pharmaceutical and biomedical firms--that Schwartz revisited the idea. "Nine years ago, living and working in Boulder, I realized that life is short and it was time to get into the bowling business--with a twist." Having discovered an Italian lawn bowling game while golfing in Scotland, he added bocce to the concept. And he committed to serving fine, high quality Italian food created by top chefs. Thus the "whole package" came together--Pinstripes: Bistro. Bowling. Bocce. TO READ MORE CLICK HERE
Dale Schwartz and his friendly and knowledgeable team welcomed SOAR members and other Streeterville stakeholders to a Bistro. Bowling. Bocce party on March 4th. "We're excited to be here, to be part of the SOAR and Streeterville community and family."
On January 22, over 200 residents and other Streeterville stakeholders gathered at the Drake Hotel for the SOAR Ward 2 Aldermanic Forum moderated by Bob Reed, director of investigations and programs for the Better Government Association (BGA). In what Reed called a "friendly discussion," the six candidates were asked for their positions on crime, traffic congestion, parks, development and even dogs. All six candidates attended the forum, including Bita Buenrostro, Brian Hopkins, Steve Niketopoulos, Alyx Pattison, Stacey Pfingsten and Cornell Wilson. All six candidates cited many SOAR activities as models for other communities in Ward 2. In particular, the SOAR Streeterville Neighborhood Plan was commended for documenting a vision for the community and SOAR's Streeterville Neighborhood Walks program was singled out for an "eyes on the street" way to help combat crime and enhance safety and security.
Pictured in the photo at left, from left: Bob Reed, Bita Buenrostro, Alyx Pattison, Brian Hopkins, Stacey Pfingsten and Cornell Wilson. At right, Gail Spreen and Mario Hollemans, SOAR vice president and event co-chair, joined the candidates on stage. For other photos go to the SOAR Gallery.
SOAR was extremely grateful to the hospitality extended by Damien McArdle, General Manager of the Drake Hotel, who hosted the forum in the glorious and spectacular Gold Coast Ballroom.
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.