Playlist Chicago


The Copernicus Center in Chicago's Jefferson Park. Photo: Meredith Francis/WTTW

Geoffrey Baer Explores Polish Chicago

Geoffrey Baer

October is Polish Heritage Month, the perfect time to explore Polonia, or Polish Chicago. Geoffrey Baer takes you on a tour of some sites that evoke the community's rich and influential continuing history in Chicago. 
The Wrigley Building and Tribune Tower in Chicago Photo: Sawyer Bengtson on Unsplash

As Blair Kamin Leaves the 'Chicago Tribune,' Revisit His Favorite Place in Chicago

Daniel Hautzinger

Blair Kamin has announced he is leaving the Chicago Tribune after 33 years, 28 as its architecture critic. A frequent guest on Chicago Tonight, he once shared his favorite place in Chicago and a story about his first review. Revisit it now.
Guy Lombardo promoting Lanzi Candy's Cashew Nut and Rice Crunch. Photo: Courtesy Michael Lahey

Recovering a Beloved Chicago Candy and the Story of the Family Business Behind It

Daniel Hautzinger

Lanzi Candy's Cashew Nut and Rice Crunch was once sold internationally and on American Airlines, all while made out of a small family-owned factory in Chicago. A documentary follows the business's story and a quest to recreate its most popular treat.
Chicago at the Crossroad

How the Failure of Public Housing Is Linked to Gun Violence in Chicago

Daniel Hautzinger

The documentary Chicago at the Crossroad shows how the failure of public housing has contributed to gun violence in the city today. "Your housing will dictate every other aspect of your life, from school to food to violence exposure to your percentage of the possibility of actually committing a crime,” says the producer.
Abner Mikva in a crowd. Photo: Courtesy Mikva Family

How Abner Mikva Inspired People to Believe in Government's Power for Good

Daniel Hautzinger

Attending college on the G.I. Bill changed Abner Mikva's life. As a congressman, judge, and mentor to Barack Obama, Elena Kagan, and numerous young people, Mikva tried to show that government could be a force for good in people's lives. 
A postcard of Chicago's Old Main Post Office, from 1941. Image: Curt Teich postcard/Wikimedia Commons

Chicago's Postal History and the Meltdown That Led to Reforms

Daniel Hautzinger

A huge backlog of mail in Chicago in 1966 caused long delays and led to bipartisan reforms of the postal service. Chicago's role was unsurprising, given that it was an important part of the national postal system, which had also contributed to the city's growth. 
The Illinois State Capitol building. Photo: Erica Gunderson

A Short History of Corruption in Illinois

Daniel Hautzinger

Stories of corruption amongst politicians in Illinois and Chicago could fill a book—and they have. As federal investigations close in on some of the state's most powerful people, revisit the last half century or so of corruption in the city and state. 
Camp TV

WTTW Is Bringing Chicago's Summertime Activities To Your Home

Daniel Hautzinger

Summer in Chicago is typically fully of fun activities from dancing to movies to concerts to summer camps held in the parks of the city. This year, WTTW is partnering with the Chicago Park District and Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events to bring those activities to you in your home.

A Virtual Celebration of Juneteenth with Historical Institutions Across the Country

Daniel Hautzinger

Six Black museums and historical institutions across the country are hosting a virtual event featuring cultural performances and scholars to celebrate Juneteenth, which marks the freeing of slaves in Texas two and a half years late, after the Emancipation Proclamation.
Graduation 2020: For Chicago. By Chicago

A Virtual Graduation Ceremony for Chicago's High School Seniors

Daniel Hautzinger

High school seniors may not be able to receive their diplomas in-person this year, but Chicago is hosting a virtual graduation ceremony featuring a commencement address by Oprah Winfrey and hosted by Hamilton star Miguel Cervantes. 
Mayor Lightfoot at the Shedd Aquarium in 'Stay Home. Hit Play.'

Mayor Lightfoot Will Bring Chicago's Cultural Gems to Students with WTTW

Daniel Hautzinger

Families and students may not be able to visit Chicago's cultural institutions in person right now, but in a new weekly series they can go behind the scences of places like the Shedd Aquarium and National Museum of Mexican Art with Mayor Lori Lightfoot. 
The Poetry Foundation library in Chicago. Photo: Sam Grant

The Chicago Magazine That Has Helped Define Poetry for the Past Century

Daniel Hautzinger

Poetry magazine has published most major poets of the last century and given many of them early breaks, from T.S. Eliot to Gwendolyn Brooks, Ocean Vuong, and Danez Smith. "Chicago," excerpts from Claudia Rankine's Citizen, and "anyone lived in a pretty how town" were first published in its pages. 
Workers on the Sanitary and Ship Canal excavate and load rock onto hoppers on September 20, 1894. Photographer unknown. Courtesy of the Metropolitan Water Reclamation District for 10 That Changed America

Chicago's Historical Ingenuity in the Face of Disease

Daniel Hautzinger

Waterborne diseases like cholera periodically devastated Chicago in the nineteenth century. The attempt to beat them inspired three of the most ambitious engineering feats the country has seen.
DJ Ayana Contreras at the AESOP DJ Booth at the 95th St. Red Line Station

Soundtrack Your Commute With These Playlists from the 95th Station DJ Booth

Daniel Hautzinger

Commuters at the 95th Red Line Station pay their fares to an unusual soundtrack: music from a DJ booth. Called AESOP, the booth is a public art installation by Theaster Gates meant to enliven commutes. Two of the booth's DJs share some of their favorite tracks to spin. 
Monteverde's Sarah Grueneberg, seen her with her 2017 James Beard Award for Best Chef: Great Lakes, is up for Outstanding Chef

Chicago's James Beard Award Semifinalists

Daniel Hautzinger

The semifinalists for the James Beard Awards, the Oscars of the food industry, have been announced, and, as usual, Chicago is well-represented on the list. Find all the Chicago semifinalists here, as well as times they have been featured by WTTW.
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