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Business

Crain’s Fast 50

Crain’s Chicago Business, June 24, 2018 — Chicago area’s 50 fastest-growing businesses. Read my contribution about the No. 4 company on the list, Hireology.

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Film Music

Summer 2018 arts preview

Crain’s Chicago Business, May 4, 2018 — Read my recommendations for concerts, movies and outdoor events.

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Business

New in Chicago: May 2015

My New in Chicago columns from May 2015 for Crain’s Chicago Business:

May 7 — Mexican wedding cookies, instant massage bookings and more. Featured businesses include Felix’s Famous Cookies, Excel Mobile Massage, Functional MobileWear, City Soles and Goose Island Beer Co.’s tasting room.

May 14 — The doctor will see you now — at home. Featured businesses include Orunje, Right Bee Cider, Pagoda Red and the William Collins Collection.

May 21 — A stylish take on “I give up” pants. Featured businesses include Public Rec’s All Day Every Day Pant, the BYO Wine Rack and Les Nereides.

May 28 — 2015: The year of the premixed cocktail business? Featured businesses include Sharaabi Spirits, Vitani, Wixter Market, Literacenter and Open Books.

Categories
Music

Summer 2015 pop concerts preview

Crain’s Chicago Business, May 8, 2015 — My picks for the top pop music concerts this summer — plus a profile of Chicago band Twin Peaks. Read more at Crain’s Chicago Business.

Photo of Twin Peaks by Pooneh Ghana

Categories
Music

2015 Millennium Park concert guide

Crain’s Chicago Business, May 7, 2015 — A day like today has us thinking about the upcoming free concert season at Millennium Park. City officials have made tweaks to the schedule for music at the park’s Jay Pritzker Pavilion. They’ve expanded Downtown Sound… Read more of my story for Crain’s Chicago Business.

Photo of King Sunny Ade by Michael Weintrob

Categories
Music

Spring 2015 pop concerts preview

Crain’s Chicago Business, March 7, 2015 — My picks for the season’s top pop music concerts. Read more at Crain’s Chicago Business.

Categories
Music

Winter 2014-15 pop concerts preview

Crain’s Chicago Business, November 1, 2014 — My picks for the season’s top pop concerts. Read more at Crain’s Chicago Business.

Photo of Mavis Staples by Robert Loerzel

Categories
Dining

The last days of Hot Doug’s

Crain’s Chicago Business, September 23, 2014 — The lines are reaching epic proportions as the end draws nigh for Hot Doug’s, the beloved “Sausage Superstore” in Chicago’s Avondale neighborhood. Read my interview with owner Doug Sohn at Crain’s Chicago Business.

Photo by Robert Loerzel

Categories
Art Music

Five reasons to brave crowds for ‘David Bowie Is’ at the MCA

Crain’s Chicago Business, September 22, 2014 — The much-anticipated “David Bowie Is,” which opens to the public tomorrow at the Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago, could turn out to be the biggest blockbuster in the museum’s history. Read more at Crain’s Chicago Business.

Photo by Robert Loerzel

Categories
Business

Industrial revolution: See how small-biz owners are giving factories new life

Crain’s Chicago Business, July 12, 2014 — They’re tucked away in desolate corners all over the city: looming brick and concrete buildings that once held factories that supported entire neighborhoods. These behemoths helped earn Chicago its brawny reputation and, once they were vacated, became hulking icons of its blight. But now a crop of savvy small-business owners and creative rehabbers are dusting some of these buildings off and finding new uses for them.

“Repurposing old structures is fun,” says Craig Golden, principal of Chicago-based Blue Star Properties, which buys and rehabs industrial buildings. “Reusing old infrastructure-so that we’re not running highways out in the middle of nowhere and electrical lines-makes me feel better.”

“You can do good business in buildings like this,” says Steve DeBretto, executive director of the Industrial Council of Nearwest Chicago, which operates a business incubator inside a former West Side plumbing factory that was built in 1887. Not only are the rates cheap for tons of square footage, but there’s a certain je ne sais quoi that appeals to some business owners. “It’s got a charm that a new building doesn’t necessarily have.”

Turn the page to take a walking tour of four industrial sites that are getting a new lease on life, then read how-and why-startups from furniture makers to distillers to small manufacturers have settled there.

20140714-linkstrip3Read my stories in Crain’s Chicago Business:

— Manifold furniture designers on the challenges of retrofitting a concrete box
— A safe space for businesses that make noise at 3 a.m.
— How a machine-friendly group engages hardware entrepreneurs in co-working
— Nick Greens’ farm springs up in Back of the Yards

Photos by Stephen J. Serio