PODCAST: Byline - Strack & Van Til stays alive; West Calumet residents adjust to new life

In the middle of April, many that regularly shop at Strack & Van Til learned the news of the stores' sale. In a rollercoaster, storybook turn of events, Indiana Grocery Group, led by the Strack and Van Til families and former CEO Dave Wilkinson, successfully outbid Jewel-Osco to buy them back.

The meantime between these two milestones left many questions about the food desert issue in the Region or how some local entities would acquire donations or food in the absence of a longtime community partner. Now that Strack & Van til is here to stay for the foreseeable future, it once again returns to the struggle posed by new grocery shopping preferences.

In other news, July 27 marked one year since West Calumet Housing Complex residents received a letter from Mayor Anthony Copeland advising them to relocate because of lead and arsenic contamination in the soil. Former residents have been seeking new housing arrangements, often with the help of vouchers, and adjusting to new chapters in their lives. The Calumet Day celebration also recently happened on July 22, but the shine of the annual event didn't seem to be dimmed by the current circumstances.

Kale is a digital producer with the Times. He is a Region native, hailing from Schererville. He writes feature stories, shoots photos, and co-produces Byline, a Times podcast. He is a graduate of Indiana University.