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Cunningham Township is hosting their annual meeting Tuesday night

I've only learned in the last year about the work that the staff and volunteers at Cunningham Township does for those living in poverty in Urbana, and they do — to put it mildly — a lot. Tuesday evening from 6 to 7:30 p.m. is an opportunity for the community as whole (whether you're an Urbana resident or not) hear about what they're doing, what they plan to do in the future, and to offer input and participate in an important discussion about issues faces fellow community members.

Topics of discussion include:

  • How can Urbana residents engage in caring for and supporting each other at a time of increasing social, ecological, and economic insecurity?
  • \What is the history and future of the township?
  • What are the current programs available and how can residents/landlords/families in crisis use them?
  • What are gaps we still need to fill?
  • How can we ensure township supports are sustainable into the future?
  • How can we continue to support local social service agencies?
  • What events would you like to see in the township garden this summer?

In the meantime, read our editorial regarding the results of research done by the Township, as well as our interview with Supervisor Danielle Chynoweth.

Photo from Facebook

Word

The Land Connection is hosting a pop up market on April 30th

Does this nice weather have you desperate for our farmers markets and fresh produce and summer? Yeah, me too. 

The Land Connection is hosting a pre-season market from 5 to 7 p.m. on Tuesday, April 30th just outside of Watson's in Downtown Champaign. It'll feature produce from Sola Gratia, baked goods from Central Illinois Bakehouse, and sweet treats from Berries & Flour. 

There will also be a pop up market at the same time on Tuesday, May 7th. 

The Land Connection's Tuesday market opens for the season on May 14th. 

Word

Flex your gardening skills as a Japan House volunteer

Japan House is looking for some gardening enthusiasts to help maintain their gardens through the spring and summer months. 

They are looking for help Monday and Friday afternoons from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m., but that will shift to 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. as the summer heats up. The busiest time is April through June, though they will still need some maintenance through October. Ideally, you would be able to devote half a day once a week.

Sound interesting? Contact Jim Bier at bier@illinois.edu with your name and number. 

Word

You can tour the County Clerk’s office this Friday

Want to see the inner workings of the County Clerk's office? The UIUC chapter of League of Women Voters and Champaign County Clerk's office is hosting a tour this Friday from 3 to 4:15 p.m. From the Facebook event:

Please join us for a tour of the Champaign County Clerk's office!

The purpose of this event is to learn more about the inner workings of local government—specifically, what kinds of tasks the County Clerk's Office performs on a daily basis, and how this impacts local residents. We will learn more about the role of the County Clerk in elections, record keeping, and more.

The League of Women Voters believes that informed voters know exactly what duties their elected officials perform. Understanding the duties of elected officials is crucial not only for voting, but also when considering running for an elected position.

In order to encourage more students to participate, the League of Women Voters of Champaign County is offering reimbursements for Uber or Lyft rides to the office, as it's not a straightforward bus ride from campus.

Photo from Facebook

Word

Beginning this Saturday, Chester’s BBQ will be on the patio at Bentley’s

If you're at Bentley's on a Saturday night and need some late night bites, you will now have Chester's BBQ food truck at your disposal on the Bentley's patio.

They will be around from 11 p.m. to 2 a.m. I'm old and may not ever make it that late to take advantage of this development, but I have no doubt some bbq nachos will pair nicely any one of Bentley's delicious cocktails. An old fashioned or Moscow mule perhaps?

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Common Ground is having a book drive for U-C Books to Prisoners

Throughout the month of April, you can bring those books you're no longer reading to the Co-op to donate to Urbana-Champaign Books to Prisoners. April 7th, 13th, 20th, and 28th between 10 a.m. and noon you can bring them directly to the store, and any other time throughout the month you can put them in the donation bins in the mall hallway outside the store. 

They accept all kinds of books, but have some specific requests including: art books, how to draw books, fantasy, science fiction series, small business, finance, self-help, young adult, newly published books, and books authored by people of color.

You can find out some of the more specific sci-fi titles they are looking for by heading to the Facebook event, and you can read up on the work of Books to Prisoners here.

Photo from Facebook

Word

Fashion, Style, & Aesthetics Reading Group has a guest lecturer on April 12th

The Fashion, Style, & Aesthetics (FSA) Reading Group welcomes its first guest lecturer Lauren Downing Peters on Friday, April 12th at 2 p.m. at Levis Center, Room 208, 919 W. Illinois Street.

Lauren Downing Peters is an Assistant Professor of Fashion Studies at Columbia College Chicago. She was a student in the first cohort of Fashion Studies MA Program at the Parsons School of Design and received her Ph.D. from the Centre for Fashion Studies at Stockholm University in 2018. She is the editor-in-chief and co-founder of Fashion Studies Journal.     

She will present on her research on the topic of the history and politics of plus-size fashion.

FSA's goal is to amplify the fashion discourse at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

FSA is an IPRH Reading Group for 2018-2019.

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Author David McCraw will be giving a talk at Allerton on Friday

McCraw is a native of Monticello, and he is currently Deputy General Counsel at the New York Times. He's written a rather timely book, Truth in Our Times: Inside the Fight for Press Freedom in the Age of Alternative Facts, and he will be giving a presentation at the Allerton Mansion on April 5th from 3:30 to 5 p.m.

If you have time, come at 3 p.m. to grab a cocktail from the cash bar and mingle before the presentation.

This is a free event, but your RSVP is requested, which you can do here.

There will be copies of the book for sale, and McCraw will do a book signing at the end. Want to read up a bit on the book? Here's the NYT review by Preet Bahara. 

Photo from Facebook

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“Discover the Night Sky” at Middle Fork River Forest Preserve on April 13th

This week is International Dark Sky Week, which calls attention to the effects of light pollution. We just happen to have Illinois' only Dark Sky Park just a ways down the road at Middle Fork River Forest Preserve. You can read more about what that means here.

While the forest preserve doesn't have anything planned this week, they have a Discover the Night Sky event happening on April 13th. From the Facebook event:

Learn about the night sky & lighting pollution, participate in hands-on activities, create & take home special crafts, speak with astronomy experts from William M. Staerkel Planetarium at Parkland College, and peer through a few telescopes!

The event is from 7:30 to 10 p.m., it's free, and no registration is needed. Just drop in whenever! Kids are welcome, they just need to be accompanied by an adult. 

Photo from Champaign County Forest Preserve District