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U of I ethnic, gender, and women’s studies will get a new home

U of I just approved a feasibility study for a new building that would house several campus units: Gender & Women’s Studies, African American Studies, Asian American Studies, Latina/Latino Studies, and the Program in American Indian Studies.

From the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences news release:

Once completed, the new building will help concentrate expertise around existing and emerging research areas of excellence such as health disparities, racial and social inequality, and technological and cultural transformation. It will also help meet campus commitments to provide courses and support for the general education requirement in U.S. minority cultures while enabling development of new PhD programs in race, indigeneity, sexuality, and gender.

Site and timeline are yet to be determined, but the building will include smart classrooms, collaborative spaces, and increased accessibility. 

Top photo from Liberal Arts & Sciences at Illinois Facebook page.

Word

Easter to play a reunion show

10 years after the release of Demonstration, Easter will be returning after a long hiatus for one night only to play a show at The Empty Bottle in Chicago. 

The show is December 3rd, at 10 p.m. with support from Nervous Passenger. Tickets go on sale this Friday, so keep an eye out on the Eventbrite page.

Check out Easter's iconic Demonstration below. 

Top image from Easter's Bandcamp.
Word

Head to the Growing Community Harvest Festival this Saturday, October 23rd

The Urbana Arts and Culture Program and Cunningham Township Supervisor's Office are hosting a harvest festival and artwork unveiling from 1 to 3 p.m. on Saturday, October 23rd at 205 West Green Street, Urbana. From the Facebook post:

The community is invited to celebrate the unveiling of new artworks and amenities in the Cunningham Township Community Garden as part of the Growing Community Public Arts Initiative.

The festival will feature “free food, fresh vegetables, vaccinations, free phone sign up, and activities for the whole family” and new artwork by local artist Law Welle. 

The event is free and open to the public.

Top image from the Cunningham Township Supervisor's Office Facebook page. 

Word

Polyvinyl is celebrating its 25th birthday

Champaign-based independent record label Polyvinyl is celebrating 25 years of operation today. 

In an Instagram post, the label shared that it would continue to release "timeless albums from incredible musicians," as well as thanked fans for sticking with them over the years. The post also mentioned that the label would be celebrating with new merchandise, giveaways, and artist interviews. 

Check out the post below.

The label has also announced that "The Polyvinyl Podcast" will be coming soon, which will chronicle the label's evolution over the last 25 years. 

To keep up to date with all things Polyvinyl, check out their wesbite and their Instagram

Top image by Anna Longworth-Singer 

Word

Help collect native seeds with Champaign County Forest Preserve District

The Natural Resources staff from Champaign County Forest Preserve District will be collected natives seeds at Middle Fork River Forest Preserve on Tuesday, October 26th from 1 to 3 p.m., and they are looking for some volunteer help.

All you need to do is meet at Point Pleasant parking lot, 2590 County Rd 3350 N, Gifford. You should wear long pants and closed toed shoes, and bring water. 

Top photo from Champaign County Forest Preserve District Facebook page.

Word

The University Library has a new archive preserving Central Illinois Jewish history

Last month, the University Library, in collaboration with the Danville Jewish Community, established the Central Illinois Jewish Communities Archives/Mervis Archives. The collection will be housed in the Illinois History and Lincoln Collections. Sybil Mervis, a Jewish community leader in Danville and Bloomington connected with Illini Hillel Executive Director Erez Cohen to initiate the effort.

From the University Library website

The newly established archives will preserve the contributions of once-thriving small Jewish communities across the center of Illinois outside of major urban centers. The materials include histories of businesses and their owners, which sustained the towns, contributions made by the Jewish residents, information about local rabbis and Jewish leaders, as well as many other historical documents.

Contents of the archives are expected to be available for research purposes by late spring 2022. 

Top image from University Library website. 

Word

A Congolese restaurant is coming to C-U

Mama Meta's Canteen is a new Congolese restaurant that will be opening in C-U. They will pick up and catering only. From their website, which is still under construction: 

MMC is a black owned, family owned small business that provides African inspired cuisine. Based out of Champaign County, we partnered with local farmers and small businesses to promote and provide the best quality produce used in our recipes.

Visit Champaign County spoke with owner Lauren Mulowayi about her plans and the food you can expect to find at Mama Meta's:

Congolese cuisine is unique and centers itself on a blend of numerous food groups. Most meals include "a starchy ingredient alongside a vegetable and meat, mostly in a stew form," according to Mama Meta's Canteen. Using the starch to scoop the meat and veggies, the most common option for this element of the meal is fermented bread made from the Cassava root called Kwanga. As far as meats, Congolese food often includes beef, chicken, fish, and goat. In Lauren's eyes, the low-sugar diet of Congolese cuisine is admirable. Even dessert is relatively simple, featuring options like fried dough balls with peanut butter sauce or plantains.

No opening date as of yet, but you can keep an eye on things on Facebook or Instagram.

Top image from Mama Meta's Canteen Facebook page.

Word

You can network with Research Park companies at Catalyze

Research Park is hosting their annual Catalyze event on Tuesday, October 26th from 5:30 to 7 p.m. at Enterprise Works.

Catalyze is an opportunity for those in or wanting to enter the tech sphere to network with Research Park and C-U companies. While it's not technically a career fair, there will be some companies looking to hire, so participants are encouraged to bring resumes and business cards. 

Registration is required to attend. if you are an employer, you can do that here. If you are an attendee, you can do that here.

Top photo by Anna Longworth. 

Photo / Word

Smith Burger Co is adding a second smashburger trailer

Smith Burger Co, a C-U food truck that makes hand-crafted burgers smashed to order, has purchased a second trailer. The truck owners plan to work on it over the winter and have both trucks serving smashburgers in the spring.

Having a second trailer will give more opportunities for C-U to enjoy burgers from the iconic green food truck in addition to letting Smith Burger Co accept more events and private party requests.

If you want to learn more about the burger food truck, you can read our review of the smashburger food truck. Be sure to follow Smith Burger Co's Facebook page for updates on the progress.

Smith Burger Co

Top image by Alyssa Buckley.

Word

The Land Connection will be hosting the indoor Winter Market this year

This will be the second year The Land Connection will run the indoor market at Lincoln Square. It will happen every Saturday from November to April, 8 a.m. to noon, except for December 25th and January 1st. The market will expand this year from it's scaled down pandemic version of 2020-2021, and will include artisans, community groups, kids programming, and demonstrations, as well as the usual food vendors. 

They will have SNAP programming with double LINK benefits every week and triple LINK benefits every 3rd Saturday of the month.

If you are interested in being a vendor, you can apply here.

Top photo from The Land Connection website.

Word

NAACP and City of Urbana are hosting two town halls about ALPRs

Automated License Plate Readers — ALPRs — will be discussed in two town hall meetings sponsored by the NAACP of Champaign County and the City of Urbana. The meetings are Thursday, October 28th (5:30-7:30 p.m.) and Friday, October 29th (1-3 p.m.) at Vineyard Church.

These meetings are meant to discuss what ALPRs are, how they are used, and what sorts of policies might surround them. The City of Champaign will vote on implementing this technology soon, and there has been some discussion and concern about their use in Urbana. You can read our most recent editorial for an overview of Champaign’s plans for this technology. 

Graphic poster

Image from NAACP Champaign County and Facebook.

ALPR Town Hall Meetings
Vineyard Church
1500 N Lincoln Ave
Urbana
Th Oct 28 5:30-7:30 p.m.
F Oct 28 1-3 p.m.

Top image from the Flock Safety website.