Monthly Archives: December 2016

Aldi Grocery Closing: Activists Protest

Official portrait of Danny K. Davis, for the 113th Congress.

Asserting that Maywood branch of Aldi’s grocery store is the only grocery in the community, a group of politicians and community activists gathered to try and prevent the closing of the store, scheduled for Christmas Day.

Democratic Representative of the 7th District, Danny K. Davis was still hopeful two days before the scheduled closure that something could be done to prevent the loss of the business to the community. The Reverend Jesse L. Jackson, Sr., was also there, explaining that the closure will just make the present “food desert” even drier, mentioning that this is an especially vital issue for the black community.

The gathering was organized by Cook County Commissioner Richard Boykin, who called for a press conference outside the store. In addition to Davis, the mayor of Maywood Edweena Perkins, Reverend Marvin Wiley, Bill Hampton, brother of dead Black Panther leader Fred Hampton), and community residents were also on hand.

“I understand based on the meetings we had with Aldi, why they are closing,” said Boykin.
Jackson said, “It appears that Aldi’s is expanding stores, but stores in Maywood, on 87th Street in Chicago, and one in Peoria, IL are closing. These stores are in the neediest communities, in Black communities. It’s adding to the food desert.”

“We’re trying to keep money flowing into communities that are hard-pressed and in great need of economic development. Any time something leaves is a difference than something coming. We know that there are individuals who are hard pressed in communities all over the country, and we have to use every bit of creativity and ingenuity we can come up with to try and keep hope alive and keep the money circulating so that money becomes a part of the economy and tax base,” Davis said

Boykin explained that Aldi’s decided to close because shoppers were hardly coming to the store. For the last ten years, this store had the lowest shopper rate per day than any of its other stores in Cook County. Add the 80 percent rise in property taxes over the past six years, and its easy to understand the company’s decision.

“I did get a commitment from them to provide a transportation shuttle from the Village of Maywood to Aldi’s other three stores located in Broadview, Melrose Park, and Bellwood beginning on December 26th,” said Boykin.

The shuttle will be available to take shoppers to one of the other three stores in the area on Mondays, Tuesdays, and Wednesdays.

Tiger Woods to Help Design PGA-Level Links in Chicago

AT&T National tournament host Tiger Woods, the top-ranked golfer in the world with 14 major victories on his resume, competes in the third annual Earl Woods Memorial Pro-Am on July 1 at Congressional Country Club. He dedicates the tournament to the men and women of the U.S. military. (Photo by Tim Hipps, FMWRC Public Affairs)

Two less-then-stellar golf courses on the South Side of Chicago are queued for a serious face-lift, and one of golf’s most shining stars is pitching in.

Tiger Woods has promised to bring his unique expertise to bare on the planned renovation of the Jackson Park and South Shore golf courses; an overhaul with a projected $30 million price tag.

The project is being sponsored by the Western Golf Association in partnership with a non-profit group, the Chicago Parks Golf Alliance (CPGA). The goal is to transform the two courses into one championship-level beauty nestled along the lakeshore with aspirations to one day host a PGA tour event, perhaps the BMW Championship.

“This project can create incredible possibilities for the community on the South Side,” Woods said. “We want to design a course that everyone will enjoy.”

Woods heads a design firm, TGR Design.

The changes to the courses are expected to be initiated this coming spring, with hopes that the championship course can open by 2020. There are also hopes to open a short course or a par-3 course, also to open in 2020.

Let’s Look at What They’re Buying in Chicago

Now with so much shopping done online, following consumer’s shopping patterns is just a click away. Combine that with this year’s holiday shopping season upon us, and we have a great combination to further understand the mind of the quintessential Chicago shopper.

Between November 1st and 30th Slice Intelligence focused their cyber-microscopes on the online shopping public. This is what they found:

•    It’s all about the clothing. About 22% of total spending, on average, was spent on apparel and accessories. In second place was electronics, coming out to around $23.98 and $22.96, respectively.
•    This year’s shopping advanced by about 18% over last year. Don’t be fooled by the big-sounding number. In other towns, like Miami and St. Louis, those folks really shopped till they dropped, posting an increase of 27% over last year.
•    The only category of goods Chicagoans did not spend more online this year over last year was on automotive products. In that category, online spending went down by about 15%.
•    Yea, we all like to buy our clothing online, but what about watches, jewelry and sports/outdoor products? Those items seem to be catching on fire for online sales. Watches and jewelry purchases were up online by 86%, sports and outdoor items, up by 70%, appliances saw a 58% rise, and pet supplies grew by 53%.