When the Hideout and the AVClub told us they were doing a comedy show called [REDACTED] whose complete lineup wouldn't be known 'til the comedians walked onto the stage, and that they were gonna throw the proceeds from the night into the 826CHI wallet we said, super cool. Then, the show happened and we, along with the soldout crowd, uttered things like "whoa" and "unbelievable" and, "yeahhhh!!!" as the onslaught of talent hit the mike, one after another.
Gigantic thanks to the Hideout, the AVClub, TBS' Just for Laugh Festival, the people who were quick on the draw to buy tickets to the show and to the ha-ha-makers: Aziz Ansari, Hannibal Buress, Brian Posehn, Pete Holmes, Patton Oswalt, Janeane Garofalo, Jon Glaser [in abstentia], Kyle Kinane, Amy Schumer, Eddie Peppitone, Cameron Esposito, and Dan Telfer.
Bo Jackson knows football. Bo Jackson knows baseball. Bo Jackson - and many other amazing athtletes who are in or friends with players in the National Basketball Retired Players Association - know the importance of 826CHI's writing and afterschool homework help. And that is why they came out to the Lost Marsh Golf course this past Friday for the Innaugural Legends on the Links golf tournament. Read all about the legendary day at nwi.com. We were thrilled to be a part of the tourny (and to have the opportunity to dodge balls while driving golf carts) and must give big thanks to the players, Agency Marketing Group, the Luvabulls and all the others who made it happen!
826CHI was honored to present Memoirs, Dance Floors, and Dinosaurs: Stories by the Writers at 826CHI at the 2012 Printers Row Lit Fest. Not only did students brave the tent's tropical temps to regale the crowd with tales that, indeed, spanned the gamut from writing about oneself to writing about a very friendly T. Rex, but we also officially released Compendium Vol. III, our latest compilation of terrific student writing.
The book is a beauty and wants very much to go on summer vacation with you. Grab your copy from the Boring Store. And don't forget, proceeds from the book go right back to the free 826CHI programs that produce the great writing that will go into the next Compendium which you can then buy and whose proceeds will go right back to the free 826CHI programs that produce the great writing that will go into the Compendium after that ad infinitum.
What better to wear while battling windmills? A new shirt from our friends at Out of Print combines two great things: Wilco and Don Quixote. And a significant portion of the proceeds will be sent to 826National (to be split between the 826 chapters in Wilco's hq of Chicago and Brooklyn).
The new Out of Print shirt features a graphic of the original Don Quixote book cover designed by the artist Edward McKnight Kauffer in the 1950s. The back of the shirt features a design by Miguel Herrera of Houston who won an open design contest inspired by the band Wilco. Participants had a limited time to conceptualize and design a graphic based on the following quote from Don Quixote selected by Jeff Tweedy: “...I can no more remember one syllable of it than the shapes of last year's clouds.”
Compendium III, a compilation of the greatest pieces from 826CHI, is at the big printing press right now. If you can't wait for the book to be fully printed and assembled by enormous machines in Canada, you can head on over to WBEZ's website where they're currently featuring some of the great stories.
Earlier this year, 826CHI said farewell to executive director Mara Fuller O'Brien after six years of service to the organization.
Barry A. Benson joined 826CHI following nearly a decade in the not-for-profit world primarily as a fundraiser and champion of literacy causes. Prior to that, Barry had incarnations in publishing, the visual arts, and higher education--and he remains tethered to those areas through a variety of affiliations. Barry's undergraduate education happened at the University of Michigan, and he received his M.A. in psychology and men's studies from Norwich University/Vermont College. He has spent much of his life in New Orleans but has lived in an ample handful of states and overseas in France and Denmark. He lives for adventure travel and stays relatively sane through regular doses of swimming and making ceramics.