May 2024 newsletter

Chicago Market Newsletter — May 2024


Hats! Hats! Hats!

Show off your Chicago Market pride with one of our brand-new hats! Charcoal grey, adjustable, one-size-fits-all, and only $25. 

Buy yours at our booth at the Uptown Farmers Market any Wednesday. 


Uptown Farmers Market News

We have so much fun news about YOUR Uptown Farmers Market. 

Yes, yours! The farmers market is a Chicago Market initiative to bring fresh, delicious local foods to all of us in the neighborhood, even before our store opens. We produce it and make it happen, which means YOU, Chicago Market Owners, are bringing this beloved community gathering place to the neighborhood. 

So, what's new?

  • First off, the season started May 1! The market is OPEN every Wednesday until November, 2:30 - 7:00pm.
  • The market is expanding. We've permitted the full stretch of Sunnyside Mall this year and expect 30-35 vendors every week once we hit our peak in June. Full vendor list is here.
  • Uptown Taproom, one of the market's fabulous sponsors, is giving out free 5oz. beer pours to the first 20 lucky people to come to the Chicago Market tent with the "word of the week". See how it all works here.
  • AND, very exciting - the Uptown Farmers Market now has its own social media accounts! Follow along: Instagram, Facebook

What's the same? Vendors you love; the $25 Market Bucks Raffle; SNAP and Link Match. 

See you on Wednesdays!

Uptown Farmers Market
Wednesdays  |  2:30 - 7:00pm (rain or shine)  |  Sunnyside Mall

Foodshed Champions: Growing Home

Foodshed Champions raises up the activists, advocates, and organizations in our foodshed who are making a difference. Learn more about them and support any way you can.

Meet Growing Home:
Growing Home is a USDA-Certified Organic urban farm, workforce development center and non-profit social enterprise in the Englewood neighborhood of Chicago.

"We believe that everyone deserves a good job, to eat well, and to live in a vibrant, supported community. We serve our communities through paid innovative employment training and local, healthy, affordable food."

Learn more and get involved: Growing Home

Follow along on the process of your store with this visual of our Timeline.
Here's the most recent progress:
  • We have an official store address! One small part of the permitting process involves the City confirming your business' street address and we're officially: 4618 N. Broadway! (Don't send us any mail there yet - we don't have a mailbox there.)

  • Our permit application process is moving along nicely. The City has provided comments already to our application and now we're in the process of editing drawings and conferring with various agencies to meet approval. There's always back and forth in the permitting process and that's where we are. 

  • Our bank's underwriting process is complete! We've submitted all the needed materials and now we await approval from the SBA (US Small Business Association) as they are backing the loan. It is very unusual for the SBA to back a co-op, but our bank has done it before and all is looking good. Once we close with the bank/SBA and have permits from the City, construction and ordering equipment can begin.

  • We've presented drawings and a proposal to the CTA for use of two small parcels of land not included in our lease that will be important to operations. They're in agreement and we await their sub-board vote of approval.

  • Electrical and gas siting and planning is moving ahead, with Peoples Gas currently in the engineering phase.

  • We're refining the look and feel of the store, involving the Board, our designers at StoreMasters, and taking all historical feedback from Owners and members of the community into consideration.

Run for the Board

We elect new Board members every year in conjunction with our Annual Meeting — coming in September this year. If you'd like to be a more integral part of the success of your Co-op, consider running for the Board. To learn about what's involved, email Dana or talk with other current Board members at our Uptown Farmers Market booth on Wednesdays. 

News from Our Business Owners

Chicago Fair Trade
Celebrating World Fair Trade Day Week, May 11-18 with lots of events, including these at their new Uptown space:
  • Trolley Tour of Chicago's Labor History, May 18, 12:45-4:00 pm
    "On this trolley tour across the heart of the city, we’ll rediscover that legacy as we consider how Chicago’s own history made it the perfect place to build a labor movement; visit places like Haymarket Square, where a confrontation between activists and police kicked off events that still reverberate globally; trace the steps of critical figures in the labor movement like Lucy Parsons and Mother Jones; and meet people who continue the fight for workers’ rights today."

  • What's Rum Got to Do With It: Rum in the World of Fair Trade
    "Join us for a mixology masterclass led by Chicago Cane Cooperative founder and distiller extraordinaire, Daniel Regueira. Gain cocktail connoisseur credentials while learning about the exploitative history of conventional rum production and discover how Chicago Cane Cooperative is turning things around with their worker-owned cooperative model."
Collective Resource Compost Collective
"We're partnering with TerraCycle to provide a solution to the problem of hard-to-recycle items: Zero Waste Bags delivered and picked up right at your doorstep. Details are here on our website."

Irpino visited Uptown Deli recently, a local spot run by Mohammad (a Chicago Market Owner!) and his brothers. Opened in 2016, Uptown Deli carries fresh meat, fresh produce, groceries, and the star of the show is their fresh sandwiches all made in-house. The perfect meal to take with you to the beach this summer, visit them at 4759 N Sheridan Rd or order their sandwiches on Uber Eats and Grubhub. Check out the Local Business Spotlight Video.

Yoga Body Elements
Catch the Uptown Wellness Festival, May 18 from 11:00am - 6:00pm at XMarket, 804 W. Montrose. Enjoy integrative classes, speakers, and vendors from leading experts in the health and wellness industry.

Get Involved

Your Co-op is a nationally recognized project that will have incredible impact on our local economy and the local food system. Invest in Preferred Shares now—you benefit and your Co-op can lower its reliance on bank debt. 

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Not up for investing but want to help your Co-op financially?

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