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Participants in Chicago Westside Sports play baseball at Columbus Park. (WTTW News)

A group of police officers and community leaders are using their time off to give back to underserved communities by getting young kids to play sports. We head to Columbus Park on the West Side to learn more.  

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Located on Chicago’s West Side, Austin is one of the city’s largest community areas — both by population and geography. (WTTW News)

Austin has dealt with decades of disinvestment and is acutely feeling the impact of gun violence. However, many residents, community organizations and local businesses are working to address some of the systemic issues the community faces and to bring investment to the area.

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Brett Eldredge is scheduled to headline Thursday at Windy City Smokeout. (Courtesy of Windy City Smokeout)

Country crooners, art festivals, yards of yarn and sudsy 5K races usher in the weekend. Here are 10 things to do in and around Chicago.

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Built in 1954, the innovative Miracle House with its distinctive steel arms was the grand prize in a church raffle. (WTTW News)

With a pair of giant steel arms jutting from its frame and a nearly all-glass exterior, Galewood’s “Miracle House” looks as futuristic in 2021 as it did when it was built in 1954. And it has an origin story as quirky as its appearance.

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Community members participate in a budget game outlining their priorities Saturday, Sept. 26, 2020 in Austin’s Moore Park. (Grace Del Vecchio / WTTW News)

Each year, city officials define a budget for Chicago. While the city budget process includes public hearings, an event Saturday sought to get community input on their budget priorities.

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(WTTW News)

Bordering the western suburb of Oak Park, community leaders say Austin often grapples with violence and disinvestment – as of late it’s struggled with COVID-19 and an uptick opioid overdoses.

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Miracle Boyd of GoodKids Mad City speaks at the “Love March” event on Saturday, July 25, 2020. (WTTW News)

Several hundred people participated in a march against gun violence as neighborhoods across Chicago deal with a recent spike in violence  — and as the city prepares for an influx of federal agents at the behest of President Trump.

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The nonprofit Loretto Hospital in Austin. (WTTW News)

The West Side neighborhood of Austin has become a hot spot for COVID-19 cases. According to the city, it falls into a zip code that has recorded a COVID-19 case rate of between 431-720 people per 100,000. 

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The Central Green Line CTA stop in the Austin community. (WTTW News)

Like other predominantly African American neighborhoods in Chicago, Austin has seen a disproportionately high number of COVID-19 cases. We speak with state Rep. La Shawn Ford, whose district includes much of the neighborhood and several western suburbs.

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An image of the homepage of the Austin Weekly News website on Tuesday, April 4, 2020. (WTTW News)

Social distancing and the statewide stay-at-home order has changed the way reporters gather and share the news. We check in with Michael Romain, editor of the Austin Weekly News, as part of our series COVID-19 Across Chicago.

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(Copyright © 2016 Michael Hudson)

Holiday trees, Christmas tubas, Hanukkah goblins and a winter solstice bonfire usher in the weekend. Here are 10 things to do in and around Chicago.

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(Photo by Eric James Walsh)

An open-air holiday market, musical performances, art books and screen printing usher in the weekend. Here are 10 things to do in and around Chicago.

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Can Chicago eliminate deadly traffic crashes? It’s trying. (Petr Kratochvil / Public Domain Pictures)

Mayor Lori Lightfoot said the city plans to act with a sense of urgency on it’s just-announced Vision Zero safety plan, a $6 million effort to eliminate the number of traffic-induced serious injuries and deaths.

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A group dedicated to addressing Chicago’s gun violence offers an update on what it’s learned through conversations with community members impacted by gun violence in the North and South Lawndale neighborhoods. 

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(Vital Kopy Media)

Music festivals, German beer, an art fair and alternative comics usher in the weekend. Here are 10 things to do in Chicago.

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(Ian Freimuth / Flickr)

The three-year funding award will be used to develop population-specific cancer prevention and screening programs at community hospitals and health centers in Austin, Humboldt Park and South Shore.