For the past several years, the International Thespian Society has held a food drive in late October called Trick-or-Treat So Kids Can Eat. This service project is done by chapters throughout the country and each year students from Thornton Fractional South High School’s drama department take part. The goal for the ITS this year was for chapters throughout the country to collect 325,000 pounds of food. The T.F. South group is often one of the top collecting chapters.
So, you may have had a student stop by your house recently to pick up donations of nonperishable foods to go toward the food drive. If not, there is still time to donate. Donations stay in our community as they are delivered to the Lansing Food Pantry for distribution. They’ll continue to accept donations until Friday, which can be dropped off at the visitor’s desk at T.F. South, 18500 Burnham Ave.
A fun night of blues in Chicago
I remember Halloween of 1980 when my brother and his then-girlfriend (and now wife of 32 years) dressed up as Jake and Elwood Blues. There was so much hype about the movie that had recently been filmed in Chicago, starring Chicago-area native and Second City alum Jim Belushi and Dan Akroyd. They played two orphaned brothers on a mission from God to save the orphanage where they were raised by nuns and blues man Cab Calloway and to do it by putting on a blues concert. In one scene, they crash through the Dixie Square Mall, where my older siblings had worked as teens. Some of the scenes took place on Chicago’s Maxwell street. There are also references to fictional places in Calumet City. Police squad cars were destroyed all over and around the city during the filming.
The local connections were neat, but it was the music and Belushi and Akroyd that really made me fall in love with the movie, which remains my favorite movie of all time. I’m such a fan that I seriously considered giving my second son the middle name of Elwood and now that he’s a fan of the movie, too, he’s genuinely disappointed that I backed out at the last minute.
So, being such a fan of the Blues Brothers characters and the music, I was thrilled to get an invite to a recent event where Jim Belushi and the Sacred Hearts Band was the entertainment for the evening. Through the food blog I write (www.chicagofoodiesisters.blogspot.com) with my sister and niece, we often get invited to food-related media events in the city. This event happened to celebrate the opening of several Art Van Furniture stores in the Chicago area (including Orland Park and Merrillville), but there were plans to serve “iconic Chicago cocktails and cuisine,” so we knew we’d have to check it out.
I was impressed by the food and the sleek, yet affordable furniture, but the highlight of the evening was definitely being just a few feet away as Belushi took the stage playing several blues classics, starting off with “Sweet Home Chicago.” When he led into a movie medley that included “She Caught the Katy” and “Soul Man,” he dedicated it to Jake Blues. It was an incredibly fun evening and a fun memory to tuck away in my Blues Brothers file.