South Chicago

El Sabor del Desdén

Last Friday night, readers and community members gathered in Pilsen’s Casa Michoacán for a reading and discussion of local author Victor M. Cortés’s latest work, “El Sabor del Desdén”. Little by little, it became clear that each character of the event, from the guitarist playing throughout the reception to the book’s presenters, has his or her own personal relationship with the author–his readers are his friends, his neighbors, his family. They are, also, the characters of his stories and his novel.

Peace Talks

The intersection of East 87th Street and South Commercial Avenue in South Chicago appears safe, spacious, and lively. Countdown timers usher groups of pedestrians across the wide streets, through an intersection framed by a dollar store, car dealership, and liquor…

Chicago’s Heartland

A tall man from Mississippi stands in the doorway to his little house near 95th and Colfax. Across the tracks from Lake Calumet and a couple miles from the Indiana-Illinois border, he invites our 44-person group in with an enthusiastic…

The House That Green Built

What comes next for an ex-competitive triathlete with a love for all things Russian and an expertise in carpentry? Building Chicago’s most sustainable house, apparently. Tim Heppner, a native of Iowa whose roots ultimately lead back to Chicago, thought about buying…