by James R. Scott, The Chicago Times

May 21, 2021

Hundreds gathered in Logan Square Park on Thursday evening to protest against Mayor Lori Lightfoot’s litany of perceived failings as she hit the halfway point of her first year in office.

The rally, which was organized by members of the Chicago Teachers Union and local activist organizations, gave some of Lightfoot’s harshest opponents a platform to air their grievances.

Many condemned the mayor’s handling of Anjanette Young’s failed raid and the deadly police shooting of 13-year-old Adam Toledo, while others chastised her for failing to follow through on campaign promises.

Some of the marchers carried imitation report cards with failing marks as they marched from Logan Square Park to Lightfoot’s neighboring home.  The marchers were stopped by a Chicago police barrier at Wrightwood and Kimball avenues, as they had been in previous rallies outside Lightfoot’s well protected home.

The mayor’s anniversary, according to Jazmine Salas, co-chair of the Chicago Alliance Against Racist and Political Oppression, “is not a celebration . . . With Lori Lightfoot as our mayor, Chicagoans are living in a nightmare . . . What a farce she campaigned for office as a reformer.”

Similar remarks on other critical topics interspersed with impromptu dancing sessions accompanied by some of the shouts that became rallying cries during last summer’s rallies.  The uprising’s spirit could be sensed all over the place.

Although the CTU is not a fan of the Mayor, many citizens will remember Lightfoot’s inaction (other than raising the bridges) during last year’s riots and looting that plagued the city.  Some see this “celebration press conference”, which excluded some reporters based on their race, as a smoke and mirrors tactic by the Mayor to cover up failures.


County of DuPage

May 12, 2021

DuPage County Animal Services has seen a large increase in the number of domestic rabbits at its shelter, with 120 rabbits accepted since January and 63 accepted in the last two weeks.

The recent waves of surrendered rabbits occurred when local pet stores sold two allegedly misgendered rabbits, resulting in accidental litters. Rabbits purchased from pet stores and breeders are typically not spayed or neutered and can breed between four and five months old. It’s common for an accidental litter to quickly become two accidental litters.

“Too often we hear from pet owners surrendering their rabbits that they made an impulse buy at the pet store for their kids before realizing how much work they are to care for or how expensive it is to spay or neuter them,” said Brian Krajewski, Chairman of the DuPage County Board Animal Services Committee. “We encourage people to do their homework to determine if a rabbit is a good pet before they buy. We have a rabbit care guide on our website that we encourage people to review.”

DuPage County Animal Services is one of the few shelters in the region that accepts domestic rabbits as strays and owner-surrendered pets. Animal Services continues to work with local rabbit rescues and shelter members of the Chicagoland Humane Coalition, a consortium of Chicago area animal welfare organizations, to move this large intake of rabbits and relieve the population at the County shelter.

For more information on rabbit care and adoption, please visit

County of DuPage


Cantigny Park

Wheaton, Ill., May 17, 2021 — Cantigny’s popular summer concert series officially begins on June 13 with a performance by classic rock band VOYAGE, at 3 pm. The Sunday afternoon concerts at the Cantigny bandshell have been on hiatus since 2019 due to the pandemic.

“Our summer events calendar is filling up fast, thankfully, but I think the concerts are what visitors have been missing the most,” said Matt LaFond, Cantigny Park executive director. “So many people have been asking about them so it’s exciting to announce that live music is returning to the park.” 

Concert logistics, naturally, are a bit different this year. The shows remain free, but for now people must acquire tickets online via Eventbrite. Tickets will be required for entry, with no walk-ups allowed. Full details are posted on, including health and safety guidelines.

The park also announced it will host Cruise Night Tuesdays, starting May 25. Visitors are encouraged to bring their classic or restored vehicles to the park from 5 to 8 pm and mingle with fellow car enthusiasts. On some Tuesdays, the First Division Museum at Cantigny Park will display military vehicles from its historic motor pool. 

Cantigny Park is open daily from 7 am to sunset, and open one hour past sunset on Wednesdays. Parking is $5 per car and free on the first Wednesday of the month. The summer parking fee on Saturdays and Sundays is $10, effective June 5.

Cantigny Park members receive free parking, invitations to exclusive events, and other benefits. More information is online at

Cantigny Park


by J. J. Quincannon, The Chicago Times

May 20, 2021

Fraternal Order of Police, which represents rank-and-file officers, has voted no confidence in Mayor Lori Lightfoot, Chicago Police Superintendent David Brown, and First Deputy Supt. Eric Carter.

The decision was prompted by growing dissatisfaction with officers’ working conditions, according to FOP President John Catanzara.  Officers’ days off have been canceled on many instances in the last year, and they have been assigned to 12-hour shifts in preparation for probable rallies or disturbances.


Forest Preserves of Cook County

May 12, 2021

Did you know we have native tree frogs in Cook County? It’s likely you’ve walked right past these tree-living amphibians without noticing!

The gray tree frog’s scientific name, Hyla versicolor, means “variable color.” Although gray is included in their name, this arboreal—or tree dwelling—frog’s skin changes color in response to its environment. They may be gray, brown or green, or a bit of all three with a white underside and yellow on the inner part of their thighs. Their bumpy camouflaged skin helps them hide from predators.

As its name suggests, adult gray tree frogs spend much of their life in the trees in wetland and woodland habitats in the eastern part of the United States and will venture into neighborhoods with similar habitats. This frog secretes a mucus from the membranes on their large, ridged toe pads that acts like a glue to help them climb and attach to the trunk of trees and shrubs.

The 1- to 2-inch gray tree frog is nocturnal and will hunt for insects when it’s dark and stay hidden in the bark of trees when they aren’t active during the day. At the end of April, male tree frogs will begin gathering in wetlands and ephemeral ponds to aggressively defend their territories and call for potential mates. Interested females will respond by laying their eggs in the water the male will then fertilize. They can live up to nine years in the wild.

Like our local wood frogs, gray tree frogs have a superpower to survive through Illinois’ harsh winters. Their body produces large amounts of glucose that acts as an antifreeze to survive freezing temperatures.

Where to find them in your neighborhood: Under the right conditions in the summer months, you might find gray tree frogs clinging to your window or screen door trying to eat the moths and insects gathering at your outside light.

Click here to listen to the unique sounds of the eastern gray tree frog.

Interested in helping tree frogs? Join us on Saturday, May 22, for a Calling Frog Survey program at Little Red Schoolhouse Nature Center. Attendees will use their sense of hearing to identify which frogs are calling, and the data collected will be used as part of the Calling Frog Survey for the Chicago Wilderness Region.

Forest Preserves of Cook County


City of Chicago, Office of the Mayor

May 19, 2021

CHICAGO- Mayor Lori E. Lightfoot alongside Chairman of the Finance Committee, Scott Waguespack, and Chairman of the Public Safety Committee, Christopher Taliaferro today, announced the introduction of an ordinance to create a public database of closed police disciplinary investigations. This historic ordinance will create an unprecedented publicly available dataset of all police disciplinary cases since 2000. The publication of this disciplinary information is the next critical step in Mayor Lightfoot’s ongoing work to overhaul transparency and accountability for the Chicago Police Department. 

“In order to mend the wounded relationship between the Chicago Police Department and the communities they serve, it is critically important that we double-down on our efforts to root the value of transparency within the department,” said Mayor Lightfoot. “This historic piece of legislation will help to do just that and give the public an important opportunity to see how far we’ve come and weigh in on what we still must do to bring about full police accountability. I want to thank Chairman Waguespack and Chairman Taliaferro for partnering with me on this ordinance and putting our city that much closer to achieving true police reform.”

 “This database is long overdue, and I thank Mayor Lightfoot and Chairman Taliaferro for their leadership and support on this important issue,” said 32nd Ward Alderman and Chairman of the Finance Committee, Scott Waguespack. “Shining a light on police misconduct and the consequences is always the right decision. This ordinance aims to build upon the accountability and transparency that Chicago deserves.”    

“This ordinance is yet another pivotal step in the right direction toward accountability and transparency,” said 29th Ward Alderman and Chairman of the Public Safety Committee, Chris Taliaferro. “As a former Chicago police officer, I can say through lived experience that the police only benefit when we increase their transparency and accountability to the public.”

The database will be created and maintained by the Office of the Inspector General (OIG). After determining an appropriate budget and staff, the OIG will create and publish on its website a searchable and downloadable digital repository of summary reports which will include finalized disciplinary dispositions against members of the Chicago Police Department. For each summary report the public-facing repository will list the following: 

  • The Complainant Register (CR) number
  • The complainant or other notification type and category
  • The names of each accused member
  • The name of the investigating agency
  • The final disciplinary decision or other final disposition

The publication of summary reports of police misconduct and related discipline is critical; however, it is equally important to highlight the need for this to be a resource for the public. As such, the new database will be regularly updated by the OIG after the closure of any new disciplinary investigation. No summary reports of investigations into alleged incidents of domestic abuse, child abuse or substance abuse will be published in the database.  Further, the proposed ordinance will not diminish any of the City’s obligations under the Illinois Freedom of Information Act (FOIA). The ordinance, and its corresponding database, will serve as a complement to those important requirements outlined in FOIA. 

This ordinance will be introduced at a reconvening of a joint meeting between the Committee on Finance and the Committee on Public Safety on May 24.  Once approved at the committee level, this ordinance will be considered by the full City Council for a final vote of approval. Upon passage, the OIG will have one year following the effective date to create and publish this database. 

Mayor Lightfoot, Chairman Waguespack, and Chairman Taliaferro are committed to ensuring that Chicago’s future is one built around a transparent understanding of Chicago police misconduct and corresponding discipline. 

City of Chicago, Office of the Mayor