Everything you need to know about Volume VII of The Frunchroom

A ladies-only lineup. The kickoff to Beverly Art Walk Week. Craft cocktails! There’s a lot to love about this edition of The Frunchroom.

If you’re just learning about us after South Side Weekly named us one of the Best of the South Side or seeing us on Windy City Live, here’s everything you need to know. Even if you’ve been to The Frunchroom before, there’s new info here for you like the artists whose work you’ll see and details on those drinks.

frunchroom_vol7_092716Who are the readers?

Eve Ewing
Essayist, poet, sociologist, editor, artist

Katy Jacob
Writer, professional nerd, payments expert

Sheila Maloney
Mom, lawyer, professor, friend, wine enthusiast

Eileen O’Connor
Blogger

Mare Swallow
Writer, founder of Chicago Writers Conference, fan of gin, ukulele novice

What’s the time? 730pm. But show up early so you chat with friends, get a drink from the bar and settle in.

Where’s the place? Beverly Woods Restaurant (11532 S. Western Ave.)

What’s the cost? We ask for a $5 donation at the door to support the work of the non-profit Beverly Area Arts Alliance, which co-produces the show, sets up the room and coordinates the beautiful art you’ll see in our space.

Wait, there’s art? Yes, we will have vintage fashion illustrations from Judie Anderson and some sharp hats from Jen Kolb throughout the space.

Are there seats? Yes, but get there early. We tend to pack the house. We’ll be in the Caravan Room.

Where do I park? Beverly Woods has ample parking. Park in the north lot and you’ll be closest to the entrance for the show.

How do I get there via transit? We’re a more car-friendly destination than a transit-friendly one. It’s a 15-20 walk from Metra’s 1115th St. stop on the Rock Island Line. Take Metra’s Rock Island line to 115th St. Walk west on 115th St. then make a left on Longwood to 116th St. and make a right. Walk toward Bell Ave. and make a left until you get to 116th Pl. then make a right. Walk to Western Ave. and make a right. Cross Western at 116th St. You’ll see Beverly Woods on your left. Or you can take the Western Avenue CTA bus (note to North Siders: this is a reaaaaally long ride) or the Pace 349.

Where can I eat? Get there early and you can eat in Beverly Woods’s restaurant area (try their famous rolls). Snapper’s is right next door for some fast-food fish and Lumes Pancake House is across the street. For more nearby restaurants, there’s this list from Yelp.

You mentioned drinks? Beer and wine will be available at the cash bar. Plus, Horse Thief Hollow’s own Lizzy Benner will have two craft cocktails available: Commodores and blackberry gin fizzes, each for $8.

What are the stories like? Some are sincere, some are tongue-in-cheek. One may be a call-to-action, another might make you think. One might be historical, one might make you remember a place you haven’t been since childhood. Basically, like having a conversation with someone you haven’t seen in a while. This review from South Side Weekly really captures what we’re about.

Who’s helping you with this? I’m producing this in partnership with The Beverly Area Arts Alliance (or The Alliance, for short).

A big thanks to Monica Wilczak, Sal Campbell, David Barsotti, Jane Zia, Chris Wilczak and Lizzy Benner who’ve given this event material, financial and moral support. And a huge thanks to Beverly Woods for hosting us. (Thank them by purchasing beverages and tipping profusely.)

And, of course, huge thanks to all our readers and, in advance, to you for coming.

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In the Frunchroom: Mare Swallow

Our final reader for this edition of The Frunchroom is filling the “token North Sider” role, but, as you’ll see and hear, her roots are on the South Side.

mare049-copy2Mare Swallow is the Founder of the Chicago Writers Conference and author of 21 Ways to Engage Your Audience. Her work has recently appeared in Story Club magazine. By day, she is a professional speaker and MFA student. She writes creative non fiction, and tells her stories on the Live Lit Circuit, at events such as That’s All She Wrote, FlickLit,  Story Lab, Story Club, Is This A Thing? and Tuesday Funk. She has been named to New City’s Lit 50 list twice.

Born at South Shore hospital and originally from the East Side, she defected to the North Side 17 years ago and now lives in Andersonville. She is a total gin Snob and plays ukulele, very badly. Mare will read a personal essay about the crazy work ethic she says she grew up with.

See you tomorrow at The Frunchroom! 730pm at Beverly Woods (11532 S Western Ave.).

Click here
to RSVP on Facebook for a reminder about the event.

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In the Frunchroom: Eileen O’Connor

Our fourth reader is Eileen O’Connor, a local writer whose popular blog No Wire Hangers, Ever is a source of humor and insight for many and who can be seen in the “Women of Beverly” photo exhibit currently running at Beverly Arts Center as part of the Beverly Art Walk.

img_9827After teaching in Chicago Public Schools for 10 years, Eileen lost her job. She faced unemployment with four young children and instead of sulking in her woes, she shook off her sorrows and headed over to Second City. Though her life as a counselor in CPS ended without warning, her career as a comedy writer was merely beginning.

Now with over 7,500 followers, Eileen runs a blog on womanhood and motherhood. Through sarcasm, she addresses both simple and complex issues she faces and leaves readers laughing out loud. From stepping on Legos to raising two gender non-conforming children, Eileen invites the public into her world.

A resident of Beverly, Eileen will talk about what it’s like to raise a couple of South Siders. Hear her and four other South Side stories tomorrow, September 27th at 730pm at Beverly Woods.

Click here to RSVP on Facebook for a reminder about the event.

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In the Frunchroom: Sheila Maloney

The third reader in our ladies-only* edition of The Frunchroom is Sheila Maloney, a Beverly resident and wearer of many hats.

1273177_10201527814333688_1993180055_oAt work Sheila is the Director of Externships at Northern Illinois University, College of Law. In addition to her work at the university, Sheila has a private legal practice focusing on arbitration and mediation where she resolves cases, conducts trainings and works with high school students on restorative justice issues. She is the author of The American Bar Association’s Guide to Resolving Your Dispute: Inside and Outside of the Courtroom. At home she has the title of Mom to her 3 kids and Wife to her dear husband. Sheila tries to balance work and family and finds that it’s almost always just one big zoo.

Sheila is a student of life who enjoys traveling, reading, dancing, and binge-watching Netflix series. She’s passionate about diversity issues, current affairs and sweet white wines. Sheila was born in São Paulo, Brazil, grew up in the Chicago suburbs and has lived in Wicker Park (before it was cool), the West Loop (when it was turning cool) and now Beverly (which has always been cool). She’s also a member of the Southwest Chicago Diversity Collaborative.

Sheila received her undergraduate degree from the University of Illinois in Urbana-Champaign and her law degree from Northwestern University, School of Law. She has a mediation certificate from the Center for Conflict Resolution. She will read a piece about choices and says it will be more “drama” than comedy, but promises a couple jokes all the same.

See Sheila and the rest of our readers at Beverly Woods on Tuesday, September 27th at 730pm.

* Ladies-only readers. Gentlemen welcome in the audience!

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In the Frunchroom: Katy Jacob

Many of this month’s readers have strong Beverly ties, including our next reader – even though she doesn’t live in Beverly anymore.

me-ann-15Katy Jacob is a professional nerd, a mom of two and a wife to one. Given “spare time,” she likes to be by herself. She writes at katydidcancer.blogspot.com  as well as at livechickenonsix.blogspot.com and is proud to have been part of the inaugural cast of Listen to Your Mother Chicago (2012).

Katy spent almost twenty years working on financial services and economic development research and policy for nonprofit think tanks and the Federal Reserve System. After a decade as a business economist and senior payments consultant for the Federal Reserve, Katy quit the daily grind and started her own consulting company, Katy Jacob Consultants LLC. (This just happened, so she’s still trying to figure out exactly what to do with herself.)

She hopes that now she will have more time to devote to writing poetry and missives about Chicago. Katy lived in Beverly for twelve years until last month, when she moved to Oak Park, her hometown. Her kids will always be native south siders and she will always believe that the Dan Ryan is the most efficient expressway in Chicago. She will read a bittersweet personal essay about her dysfunctional relationship with Chicago.

Join us at The Frunchroom at Beverly Woods Restaurant on September 27th at 730pm.

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In the Frunchroom: Eve Ewing

We’re less than a week away from our Beverly Art Walk Week show on Tuesday, September 27th at 730pm. We’re expecting our second show at Beverly Woods to be as lively as our July show so get ready.

But first, if you haven’t already read South Side Weekly‘s picks for the best of Beverly/Morgan Park – which just so happen to include us – or seen its editor-in-chief Jake Bittle talk about The Frunchroom on Windy City Live, do that now! And then come back and read about our first reader, Eve Ewing!

dsc_4841Eve Ewing grew up in Logan Square, and since then has lived in Pilsen, Hyde Park, and now the South Loop. She’s a sociologist of education whose research is focused on racism, social inequality, and urban policy and the impact of these forces on American public schools and the lives of young people.

Eve is also an essayist and poet. Her work has been published in many venues, including Poetry Magazine, The New Yorker, The Atlantic, The Nation, The New Republic, Union Station, and the anthology The Breakbeat Poets: New American Poetry in the Age of Hip-Hop. She co-directs Crescendo Literary, a partnership that develops community-engaged arts events and educational resources. Crescendo recently hosted the Chicago Poetry Block Party in the Bronzeville community, where Eve also used to teach middle school.

Eve will read an excerpt from a piece she wrote for The New Yorker about Dyett High School, specifically about the relationship between public schools and public housing in Bronzeville.

See you on September 27th at 730pm at Beverly Woods!

Photo: Fatimah Asghar

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Volume VII of The Frunchroom: Ladies night edition

In the first edition of The Frunchroom in our new, larger space at Beverly Woods back in April, I assumed we’d draw a good-sized crowd and then expand into the space over time.

We ended up packing the room and having to bring in more chairs.

All the support from the Beverly Area Arts Alliance and the community of regulars we’ve attracted since we started made that possible.

frunchroom_vol7_092716We hope you’ll join us again for a special Tuesday edition of The Frunchroom on Tuesday, September 27th at 730pm.

It’s special for two reasons:

1) It’s on a Tuesday to kick off Beverly Art Walk week, which will culminate in Saturday’s Art Walk starting at noon. More details are available here.
2) Longtime fans will know we don’t do themes at The Frunchroom, except for stories of the South Side told by people who know it well. But sometimes our readers come together in a certain way and this time we have an all-women lineup, which is the first time that’s ever happened.

As we did last time, we’ll have retro-inspired, arts-driven decor created by Alliance members. In addition, Alliance board member and Horse Thief Hollow manager Lizzy Benner will guest bartend at Beverly Woods serving unique craft cocktails not found elsewhere.

Without further ado, here are our readers:

Eve Ewing
Essayist, poet, sociologist, editor, artist

Katy Jacob
Writer, professional nerd, payments expert

Sheila Maloney
Mom, lawyer, professor, friend, wine enthusiast

Eileen O’Connor
Blogger

Mare Swallow
Writer, founder of Chicago Writers Conference, fan of gin, ukulele novice

See you September 27th at 730pm at Beverly Woods! A $5 donation is requested at the door.

Bios and more to come in the following weeks.

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