Stories by Kristen Thometz

2019 Chicago Summer Festival Guide

Taste of Lincoln Avenue (Special Events Management)

Up next: World’s Largest Block Party, Chi-Soul Fest, Rudiofest, Chicago Pride Fest, Long Grove Strawberry Fest, Ravenswood on Tap and more.

Rep. Schakowsky: LGBTQ Community, Health Care ‘Under Threat’

U.S. Rep. Jan Schakowsky (D-IL, 9th District) speaks outside the Howard Brown Health Center Friday, June 14 about how the Trump administration’s policies are limiting LGBTQ individuals’ access to health care. (Kristen Thometz / WTTW News)

As communities across the country celebrate Pride Month, LGBTQ organizations and activists are speaking out against Trump administration policies that limit those individuals’ access to health care.

NIH Awards $2.8M to UIC, Johns Hopkins to Study Cardiac Arrest Drugs

(Image by Arek Socha / Pixabay)

Sudden cardiac arrest can cause death within minutes. There are no drugs to treat the condition, but researchers are hoping to change that by studying the efficacy of two drugs that could improve survival. 

10 Things to Do This Weekend: June 13-16

(Photo by Steven E. Gross)

Finger-licking barbecue, scores of electric scooters, Latin beats and rare books usher in the weekend. Here are 10 things to do in and around Chicago.

Chicago Has the Largest Life Expectancy Gap in the Country. Why?

(Kristen Thometz / WTTW News)

An analysis of 500 U.S. cities by NYU School of Medicine offers a startling view of Chicago, but a local physician says the city’s health inequities have been known for years. What’s causing that gap, and how can it be addressed? 

10 Things to Do This Weekend: June 6-9

(Courtesy of Pilsen Food Truck Social)

Food trucks, street festivals, the Chicago blues and green gooey slime usher in the weekend. Here are 10 things to do in and around Chicago.

Rahm Emanuel Bikes Around Lake Michigan

(Rahm Emanuel / Facebook)

The former Chicago mayor completed the more than 900-mile trip Tuesday, according to a post on Facebook.

Study Finds Most LGBTQ Services Located in White, Wealthy Neighborhoods

(Roman Boed / Flickr)

In Chicago, Black and Latinx residents are three times more likely than whites and Asians to live in areas located at least 3 miles from LGBTQ service providers, according to a new study. 

Mayor Lightfoot Appoints New Chicago School Board

Miguel del Valle, a former Illinois state senator, will serve as the president of the Chicago Board of Education. Mayor Lightfoot announced his appointment and six others Monday morning.

Uptown Clinic Owner Gets 6 Years in Prison for Illegally Selling Opioids

(U.S. Air Force photo by Senior Airman Hailey R. Staker)

Prosecutors say Mohammed Shariff, who illegally dispensed hundreds of thousands of opioid pills, “showed an abject disregard of patients and perverted his companies into engines of unlawful profit.”

6 Weekend Ideas for a Summer Road Trip or Chicago Staycation

A waterfall in Starved Rock State Park. (Arturo Hurtado / Flickr)

In need of a vacation, but don’t want to travel too far? We share our favorite local activities and weekend getaways for a last-minute road trip or a city staycation. 

10 Things to Do This Weekend: May 30-June 2

(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.

Report Ranks US, China 36th in Protecting and Providing for Children

(cherylholt / Pixabay)

Children have a better chance at reaching their full potential now than at any other time in history, according to a new report released by Save the Children. But there’s more work ahead – particularly in the U.S.

Cook County to Address Perinatal Health Disparities with $4.8M Grant

(culturarte86 / Pixabay)

The infant mortality rate among African Americans in Cook County is twice the county average. Health officials seek to close that gap with the help of a new five-year grant.

Get Fit at Free Outdoor Workouts in Chicago This Summer

Summer Fitness Supported by LifeStart (Credit: James Richards IV Photography)

Ditch the gym and take your fitness routine outside this summer with free classes at Millennium Park, Navy Pier and Gallagher Way. With morning and evening classes, there are plenty of opportunities to get in shape.

Research Finds Early Childhood Education Strengthens Families

(Brandis Friedman / WTTW News)

Nobel Prize-winning economist James Heckman tells us how early childhood education can impact a person’s life well into middle age.

12 Things to Do This Memorial Day Weekend: May 23-27

(Active Transportation Alliance / Facebook)

Street fests, an unusual estate sale, wearable technology and a massive bike ride usher in the long holiday weekend. Here are a dozen things to do in and around Chicago.

Study Finds ‘Promising’ Results for Lung Cancer Detection Using AI

(valelopardo / Pixabay)

Artificial intelligence outperformed radiologists in identifying lung cancer as part of first-time screenings, according to a new study. The technology also produced fewer false positives and negatives.

Rahm Emanuel to Contribute to ABC News, The Atlantic

Mayor Rahm Emanuel appears on “Chicago Tonight” on Monday, May 13, 2019.

Former Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel has at least two new gigs after wrapping up his second term in office. He joins the broadcast network as a contributor and The Atlantic as a contributing editor.  

Measles Exposure Reported in Chicago

In this March 27, 2019, file photo, measles, mumps and rubella vaccines sit in a cooler at the Rockland County Health Department in Pomona, N.Y. (AP Photo / Seth Wenig, File)

An individual with a confirmed measles infection took public transportation and visited several stores in the Loop late last week, according to health officials. 

Illinois Bill Seeks to Legalize Syringe Exchanges Statewide

(Eric Molina / Flickr)

A new bill aims to fix the state’s “ambiguous” law over syringe exchange programs. Public support for such programs remains low, but advocates say they can offer critical help to those in need.

10 Things to Do This Weekend: May 16-19

The William G. Fricke House, designed by Frank Lloyd Wright, is one of the stops on the 2019 Wright Plus Housewalk. (Frank Lloyd Wright Trust / Facebook)

Historic homes, art fairs, cover bands and water lanterns usher in the weekend. Here are 10 things to do in and around Chicago.

UIC to Address Infant, Maternal Health Disparities in Chicago

(Free-Photos / Pixabay)

In Illinois, African American women are six times as likely to die of pregnancy-related conditions than white women. A new initiative aims to close that gap in three Chicago communities, with the help of a $4.7 million grant.

Cook County Jail to Expand Medication-Assisted Treatment for Opioid Addiction

Last year, about 5,400 detainees at Cook County Jail received treatment for opioid use – an average of 375-400 each month. The county will be able to expand its services for opioid use disorder, thanks to a new grant. 

Loyola Research Paves Way for Simple Test for Ebola Virus

(Centers for Disease Control and Prevention)

Existing tests for the deadly virus are inaccurate, expensive and can be challenging to administer, but new research from Loyola University Chicago could lead to a simple filter paper test that changes color if Ebola is present.