Doomsday Clock Stands Still at 100 Seconds to Midnight, and That's Not a Good Sign

The Doomsday Clock is set at 100 seconds to midnight for the third year in a row. (Courtesy of Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists)

“Steady is not good news,” said members of the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists. “We are stuck in a perilous moment.”

Chicago International Puppet Theater Festival Returns

Blair Thomas is the behind-the-scenes puppet master who pulled a lot of strings to keep the puppet festival on the calendar.(Credit Saverio Truglia)

The Chicago International Puppet Festival returns for 10 days, and Thursday is opening night. Blair Thomas, the behind-the-scenes puppet master, pulled a lot of strings to keep this festival on the calendar.

Tracking Biden’s 1st-Year Progress Delivering on Promises

President Joe Biden takes off his mask to speak about the COVID-19 pandemic during a prime-time address from the East Room of the White House, on March 11, 2021, in Washington. (AP Photo / Andrew Harnik, File)

President Joe Biden took action on a number of his key campaign promises, from rebuilding U.S. alliances globally to distributing vaccines across America and the world. But others remain works in progress or dependent on Congress to address. That’s particularly true of his promises to reform the nation’s immigration system. 

Voting Bill Collapses, Democrats Unable to Change Filibuster

In this image from Senate Television, Sen. Joe Manchin, D-W.Va., speaks on the floor of the U.S. Senate Wednesday, Jan. 19, 2022, at the U.S. Capitol in Washington. (Senate Television via AP)

Despite a day of piercing debate and speeches that often carried echoes of an earlier era when the Senate filibuster was deployed by opponents of civil rights legislation, Democrats could not persuade holdout senators Kyrsten Sinema of Arizona and Joe Manchin of West Virginia to change the Senate procedures on this one bill and allow a simple majority to advance it.

A Picture’s Worth a Thousand Words on Lake Effect Snow

Photos taken on Interstate-94 near Porter County, Indiana, show weather conditions scarcely 2 miles apart. (Indiana Department of Transportation)

A couple of Indiana highway cameras caught lake effect snow in action Thursday morning, offering a picture-perfect snapshot of one of the region’s quirkier weather phenomena.

Chicago Measure to Enforce State Law Designed to Reduce Sugary Drinks for Kids Advances

(WTTW News)

The state law, which applies in Chicago as well as the rest of the state, took effect Jan. 1. 

Suspect in Shootout With U of C Officer Wanted ‘Suicide by Cop’: Prosecutors

Body camera footage shows a Jan. 18, 2022, shooting in which a University of Chicago police officer and 27-year-old man exchanged gunfire. (University of Chicago Police Department)

Rhysheen Wilson, 27, was ordered held on $2 million during a bond hearing Thursday following his arrest on charges of attempted murder of a peace officer, aggravated discharge of a weapon and aggravated unlawful use of a weapon.

At 113, NAACP Evolves for Relevance on Racial Justice Agenda

NAACP President Derrick Johnson poses for a photo on Saturday, Jan. 15, 2022, in Los Angeles. The NAACP, the nation’s oldest civil rights organization, will soon celebrate its 113th birthday, which its leaderships said comes as it undergoes a restructuring to reflect a membership and leadership that is trending younger. (AP Photo / Richard Vogel)

The nation’s oldest civil rights organization’s birthday next month comes as it undergoes a restructuring to reflect a membership and leadership that is trending younger, to people in their mid-30s. As a result, it is adding endeavors like producing TV streaming content for CBS.

US Researchers Test Pig-to-Human Transplant in Donated Body

In this photo provided by the University of Alabama at Birmingham, surgeons prepare to transplant kidneys from a genetically modified pig into the body of a deceased recipient in September 2021. The experimental procedure was a step-by-step rehearsal for operations they hope to try in living patients possibly later in 2022, part of a quest to use animal organs to save human lives. (UAB via AP)

Surgeons in Alabama transplanted a pig’s kidneys into a brain-dead man — a step-by-step rehearsal for an operation they hope to try in living patients possibly later this year.

2 Young Girls Safe After SUV They Were in Was Stolen, Crashed on Northwest Side

A file photo shows a crime scene blocked off by the Chicago Police Department. (WTTW News)

According to Chicago police, the incident began just after 5 a.m. Thursday in the 5600 block of North Sacramento Avenue.

Kate Sullivan Takes Guests to Favorite Restaurants on New Season of ‘To Dine For’

Sullivan dines with famed architect Jeanne Gang in her favorite Chicago restaurant, Brindille, a French restaurant in River North. (Courtesy “To Dine For with Kate Sullivan” )

This season of “To Dine For with Kate Sullivan” takes viewers on a journey with successful, and sometimes prominent guests sharing stories over their favorite foods.

Mayor Lori Lightfoot Says COVID-19 Felt Like ‘Bad Cold,’ Heads to Washington, D.C.

Mayor Lori Lightfoot addresses the news media Tuesday Jan. 18, 2021. (Chicago's Mayor's Office)

Mayor Lori Lightfoot said Tuesday that she has fully recovered from her bout with COVID-19, and said it felt like “a bad cold.”

When It Comes to COVID-19 and Mental Health, ‘Kids Very Rarely Do Better Than Their Parents’

Research shows kids experienced both mental and physical health problems during the pandemic. (Iakov Filimonov/Adobe Stock)

New research published Tuesday in JAMA Pediatrics that looked at children and adolescents from 11 countries found kids experienced both mental and physical health problems — anxiety, depression, lower physical activity, food insecurity and school disengagement — linked to school closures and social lockdowns.

AT&T, Verizon Pause Some New 5G After Airlines Raise Alarm

A Dreamliner 787-10 arriving from Los Angeles pulls up to a gate at Newark Liberty International Airport in Newark, N.J., Monday, Jan. 7, 2019. (AP Photo / Seth Wenig, File)

The decision from the companies came Tuesday as the Biden administration intervened to broker tried to broker a settlement between the telecoms and airlines over a rollout of new 5G service.

Stop Politicians from Using Campaign Cash to Defend Themselves from Corruption Probes, Illinois Supreme Court Urged

(benscripps / Pixabay)

Ald. Byron Sigcho-Lopez (25th Ward) looked on as his attorney Adolfo Mondragon urged the Illinois Supreme Court to overturn decisions by the Illinois State Board of Elections as well as lower courts to toss out his complaint against his predecessor, disgraced former Ald. Danny Solis.

January 19, 2022 - Full Show

(WTTW News)
Spotlight Politics on the latest Republican to enter the governor’s race. Parenting amid a pandemic. The re-organized rollout of 5G cell service. And a famous architect’s favorite Chicago restaurant.

Raw Senate Debate in Fight to End Voting Bill Filibuster

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., speaks to reporters alongside, from left, Sen. Tim Kaine, D-Va., Sen. Jeff Merkley, D-Ore., Sen. Raphael Warnock, D-Ga., Sen. Debbie Stabenow, D-Mich., and Sen. Amy Klobuchar, D-Minn., during a press conference regarding the Democratic party's shift to focus on voting rights at the Capitol in Washington, Tuesday, Jan. 18, 2022. (AP Photo / Amanda Andrade-Rhoades)

Despite his late push, Biden has been unable to persuade two holdout Democrats, Kyrsten Sinema of Arizona and Joe Manchin of West Virginia, to change Senate rules so the party can overpower a Republican filibuster that is blocking the voting bill. 

Chicago Is Updating Its Climate Action Plan. Here’s How To Chime In

(Karsten Würth / Unsplash)

Upcoming virtual town halls will give Chicagoans a chance to learn about and weigh in on plans to update the city’s climate action plan, from emission reduction targets to renewable energy goals.

Cook County Judge Overheard Disparaging Attorney Temporarily Pulled From Bench

Empty jury box area readied for members of the jury in the courtroom of Judge Vincent Gaughan at the Leighton Criminal Court Building on Tuesday, Sept. 4, 2018. (Antonio Perez / Pool / Chicago Tribune)

Judge William Raines has been placed on “restricted duties or duties other than judicial duties” and must receive sensitivity training and gender bias counseling, according to an order from Chief Judge Timothy Evans.

CPS to Adopt Shortened COVID-19 Isolation Time

(WTTW News)

More than 14,000 students and staff within Chicago Public Schools are currently either quarantining or in isolation due to COVID-19, but the district will soon be shortening the amount of time those people need to stay home from school.

Chicago Has Passed Peak of Omicron Surge of COVID-19: Top Doc

Dr. Allison Arwady, the commissioner of the Department of Public Health, addresses the news media on Wednesday Jan. 19, 2021. (Chicago's Mayor's Office)

Chicago's COVID-19 test positivity peaked at 19.6% on Jan. 1, Arwady said, and hit 12.6% on Tuesday, the lowest rate since Dec. 28, according to city data. 

10 Things to Do This Weekend: Jan. 20-23

(Courtesy of Robin Frohardt / Pomegranate Arts)

Hundreds of puppets, life-sized dinosaurs, art exhibits and a celebration of winter usher in the weekend. Here are 10 things to do in and around Chicago this weekend.

Biden to Give Away 400 Million N95 Masks Starting Next Week

Registered nurse Jessalynn Dest pulls on a new N95 mask as indentations remain from another she had just removed after leaving a COVID-19 patient room in the acute care unit of Harborview Medical Center, Jan. 14, 2022, in Seattle. (AP Photo / Elaine Thompson, File)

The White House announced Wednesday that the masks will come from the government's Strategic National Stockpile, which has more than 750 million of the highly protective masks on hand. 

Big Voting Bill Faces Defeat as 2 Dems Won’t Stop Filibuster

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-NY, speaks to the media after Senate Democrats met privately with President Joe Biden, Jan. 13, 2022, on Capitol Hill in Washington. ( AP Photo / Jose Luis Magana, File)

Voting legislation that’s a top priority for Democrats and civil rights leaders seemed headed for defeat as the Senate opened Tuesday, a devastating setback as two holdout Democratic senators refuse to support rule changes to overcome a Republican filibuster.

Utensils No Longer Part of the Deal With Take-Out or Delivery as New Law Goes Into Effect in Chicago

(Filmbetrachter / Pixabay)

Forget about napkins and ketchup packets too. On Tuesday, Chicago's single-use foodware ordinance will go into effect, meaning disposable utensils will no longer be included with a take-out or delivery order unless specifically requested by the customer. 

Shedd Aquarium Embarks on $500M Transformation


That transformation will be both physical, encompassing major interior renovations to create immersive exhibits, but will also entail a transformation of mission with more educational programming for Chicago school students.

How the Lack of Items Is Affecting Incarcerated People in Illinois

(WTTW News)

Incarcerated people in Illinois prisons are having difficulty getting access to basic necessities, like hygiene items or detergent. The Illinois Department of Corrections says this is due to a supply chain issue, but advocates point to disputes between IDOC and vendors.

Clearing Couple Starts Pet Pantry to Help Those in Need

Meet a couple that used their stimulus checks to build a pet pantry to help those struggling to buy pet goods. (WTTW News)

It has become more common to see donation boxes across the city. Some are filled with books and others with canned goods. We head to Clearing to speak with a couple who has built a donation box to help those with pets. 

White House: Texas Hostage-Taker Raised No Red Flags Before Entering US

Congregation Beth Israel Rabbi Charlie Cytron-Walker, facing camera, hugs a man after a healing service Monday night, Jan. 17, 2022, at White’s Chapel United Methodist Church in Southlake, Texas. Cytron-Walker was one of four people held hostage by a gunman at his Colleyville, Texas, synagogue on Saturday. (Yffy Yossifor / Star-Telegram via AP)

Malik Faisal Akram, a 44-year-old British citizen, arrived in the U.S. at Kennedy Airport in New York on a tourist visa about two weeks ago, officials said. He spent time in Dallas-area homeless shelters before the attack Saturday in the suburb of Colleyville.

Illinois Nursing Homes Face Spike in Cases, Staffing Shortages Amid COVID-19 Surge

COVID-19 cases and deaths at U.S. nursing homes are once again on the rise. (Pixabay)

According to CDC data, Illinois saw its highest-ever case rate for nursing home residents this month, surpassing even last winter’s surge. Cases among staff have also reached record levels. 

Illinois Law Allows Pharmacists to Dispense Contraception


It’ll be easier to access birth control in Illinois, courtesy of a new law that allows pharmacists to dispense hormonal contraception without a doctor’s prescription.

January 18, 2022 - Full Show

(WTTW News)
Omicron’s impact on nursing home residents and staff. Access to birth control gets easier. Problems getting supplies to Illinois prison inmates. And the Shedd Aquarium’s half-a-billion dollar upgrade.