News & Events


E Pluribus ‘Awesum’

February 28th—

E Pluribus Unum is certainly a nice phrase to mold into coins. But, dare we argue, it's an even nicer phrase to build a book from. Yes, "out of many, one" has been our guiding force as we move into the final phases of our Big Spring Book Project. The project: one amazingly big story created by many, many, many students from all over Chicago.

Students from one school developed the characters while students from another came up with some pivotal plot points. Students from one school were fleshing out some telling scenes while students at another school threw came up with crucial twists and maybe even a villain or two. At every turn, students are learning about what goes into a fantastic story while simultaneously unleashing their imaginations on the prompts they're given.

We will certainly let you know when this one book will be available for you to give as a gift to yourself and your many, many friends.

Moustache-a-thon Winners

February 23rd—

Our annual moustache growing competition has come to a close. Now, to reveal who had the most beautiful growth under his nose.

The winners:

Jeni won the 'Stache Tiara for best prosthetic!

Nathan won the 'Stache Sash for best organic!

George won the Chap 'Stache Cup for most money raised!

And, clearly, the students of 826CHI won, as they'll continue to receive free awesome programming because of everyone's support to the tune of over $9500!

Check out the official website for a final glimpse of all that glorious hair and thank you to all who made Moustache-a-thon 2011 a success!

A Kendra’d Spirit

February 22nd—

We are pleased to welcome Ms. Kendra Curry as our new Program and Volunteer Coordinator! You might recognize her as a prosthetic grower from this year's moustache-a-thon or from her time helping our afterschool program.

Kendra became involved at 826CHI as a volunteer tutor immediately upon her arrival in the Windy City, and has since co-invented Chicago-specific handshakes with students. Kendra has spent more than a decade involved in educational programming at arts organizations and museums, including work in Mexico and Honduras, at the Museum of Modern Art in New York, and for the Chinati Foundation and Artpace in Texas. A native Mainer and honorary Texan, Kendra is also an artist who rather obsessively draws, paints, and animates clouds. She earned her BFA in sculpture from the Maryland Institute, College of Art and her Master's in Art Education from the University of Texas at Austin.

Keep Promme and Carry On

Keep Promme and Carry On

January 25th—

826CHI's annual PROMME fundraiser will be SATURDAY MARCH 5th at 8PM at the historic (and easily accessible via portkey or the Tube) Pulaski Park Fieldhouse !

John Donne once wrote, "No man is an island." He went on to clarify, "But, duh, if he were, he'd wanna be England, 'cause it's tops. Zig-a-zig-ah." As such, the theme of this year's promme is in honour of that smashing island nation that gave the world everything from knights who say "Ni" to a knight who sings about "Crocodile Rock" and all the Knightley's in between.

The dress for the British invasion of Promme is second hand formal and/or dress as a person, landmark or thing from jolly old England. 

Your Promme ticket includes refillable pints of the choicest brews from Haymarket pub, potato crisps and other snacks, a performance by Rod Stewart (impersonator extraordinaire Steve Bobbitt), silent auction (for items like tickets to Bonnaroo and Wait Wait Don't Tell Me among others), more music and dancing, dancing, dancing.

Must be 21+. Tickets are £30 or $50 at the door.  All the proceeds go to 826CHI's "tudor"ing and writing programmes. Get your tickets before they're like Prince William and no longer available.

Yeeaahhhh, baby, yeah! 

Neko Case’s Mercury Cougar-Rama Muscle Car ‘Splosion

Neko Case’s Mercury Cougar-Rama Muscle Car ‘Splosion

January 22nd—

Sometimes too many tickets can make your car disappear. But in this awesome raffle through 826 national, many tickets may actually make a car materialize!  

Beautiful and chills-inducing musician and one time Chicago dweller, Neko Case has generously donated her 1967 Mercury Cougar to be raffled off, with all proceeds going to 826National. That car is stuffed with all kinds of really neat stuff too, like: Adidas gear, Rand McNally maps, Tazo Tea, Chipotle burritos for 10, and lots of CDs!

Other things you can potentially win: a guitar autographed by Elton John, Elvis Costello, Dr. Ralph Stanley, T. Bone Burnett, a Carr amplifier, lots of vinyl from Sub Pop records, another guitar, this time autographed by Michael Stipe, Black Thought, Jimmy Fallon, John Wesley Harding, T Bone Burnett, Britt Daniel etc!

On top of all that, for the first 100 people with raffle ticket purchases over $100 826National will send you a signed copy of Zeitoun by Dave Eggers!

All the details about buying your raffle tickets can be found on 826National's site and Neko Case's site. But act fast, because this opportunity, like your car that was parked on that one side of the street on the first Tuesday, will be gone soon! The drawings begin March 14! 

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