LAWG Week: Dominica McBride and Leah C. Neubauer on Chicago From All Sides

Hi, we are Dominica McBride and Leah C. Neubauer, members of the Chicagoland Evaluation Association and the Local Affiliate Working Group. This LAWG week includes posts designed to be real about our city, share local evaluator insights, and continue to build conference excitement!

Lessons Learned:

Chicago is an amazing city filled with rich history, beautiful diversity, and many festivities. We hope that you take time while you’re here to enjoy the city’s diversity, seen through many arenas of our city and surrounding metropolitan communities. Our city is home to over 200 neighborhoods; however, most in Chicago know the 77 community areas designated back in the 1920s.   Our city’s neighborhoods are often grouped into “sides” – including the South, West, North, and Downtown. While our city’s geography may be seen light-heartedly through the Chicago Cubs (North) and Chicago White Sox (South) side baseball rivalship, more recent media depictions have displayed negative connotations of Chicago neighborhoods, often focusing on the residents’ skin color or country of origin. Our reality is that Chicago’s neighborhoods are cultural treasures full of many opportunities during your time at AEA.

Hot Tips: While you are here, consider visiting –

  • The Chicago Riverwalk just outside of the conference doors. Various segments of the city’s “Second Lakefront” opened this summer. Conference attendees should plan for fresh air in the city’s newest open space.
  • The West Side where the nationally renowned National Museum of Mexican Art has one of the country’s largest Mexican art collections offering free admission every day.
  • 1060 W. Addison via the Red Line Addison stop where you will find Wrigley Field – home to the Chicago Cubs and the occasional outdoor concerts. While the baseball season will be over, a peek at the 101 year old park is worth the visit.
  • The Lakefront John G. Shedd Aquarium:   The Shedd-based Evaluation Team is welcoming fellow AEA member attendees with FREE Admission during the conference. Attendees need to present their conference badge at the Shedd main ticket desk November 9 through 14 to receive one (1) complimentary Shedd Pass ticket. Tickets are valid for entry to the aquarium galleries, Abbott Oceanarium and Wild Reef.

This is only the beginning. When you come, we will have even more prepared for you to see! Please plan time in your busy AEA schedule to live the multicultural theme of the conference in Chicago.

We’re looking forward to November and the Evaluation 2015 annual conference all this week with our colleagues in the Local Arrangements Working Group (LAWG). Do you have questions, concerns, kudos, or content to extend this aea365 contribution? Please add them in the comments section for this post on the aea365 webpage so that we may enrich our community of practice. Would you like to contribute to aea365? Review the contribution guidelines and send your draft post to

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