The Big Onion Awards
by Edward R. Allen and Donal G.Quinlan

Our first annual awards for sloth, greed, and goofiness among burglars and bunglers. Titled for the foul-smelling weed from Chicago derives its name

Artist Provocateur
by Mark Jannot
Roger Brown is one of the most popular, successful artists to emerge from Chicago in the past three decades. His latest exhibition of paintings showed that he could still wield a poison brush.

Homes of the Stars
by Dennis Rodkin
Roger Ebert put a private theatre in his house; Scottie Pippen installed a basketball court in his. See these and other high-priced spreads of some of Chicago’s prominent personalities.

Showdown in Old Town
by Scott McMurray
Designating a neighborhood a historic district can have a downside. In Old Town it has set off a fierce battle between preservationists and renovationists.

Where’s the Money?
by Greg Hinz
Despite all the election-year rhetoric about school funding, what’s really opening a hole in the state budget is Medicaid. The numbers are horrifying.

At Home: Upstairs, Downstairs
by Christine Newman
In its architecture and its furnishings – its cozy and open spaces – this Wicker Park loft is an autobiography in progress.



Chef Sarah Stegner stirs up national attention; Andre De Shields remounts The Colored Museum; and Judy Krizmanic pens a book for teen vegetarians.

The Goods
by Leah Eskin

Take it easy on the sidelines with shades, sweaters, and hip flasks while thousands of runners sweat out the marathon.

by Greg Hinz
Why the media broke late on Mel Reynolds; lopping off the head tax; plus, unconventional gift ideas for the 1996 Democratic National Convention

Modern Times
by Marcia Froelke Coburn
A documentary filmmaker goes gonzo in political hot spots around the world.

by Michael Stone
Megatycoons Donald Trump and Jay Pritzker are locked in dueling lawsuits over the decline and fall of Manhattan’s once-glitzy Grand Hyatt.

Prime Time

Hot dates around town this month

by Dennis Ray Wheaton
Aspiring chefs at two cooking schools trade No.2 pencils for spatulas when they test their skills on you in their student-run restaurants.

Budget Beat
by Anne Spiselman and David Novick
Three established Italian restaurants have opened suburban spinoffs, and none of them takes a back seat to its older sibling.

Back Talk
by Henry Hanson

Victoria Lautman, John David Mooney, Camille and Paul Oliver-Hoffmann, Susanne Mentzer, David Csicsko