Chicago magazine's October issue hits newsstands Thursday, September 19. To schedule an interview with one of our writers or editors, please contact Allison Roche at

Fall Preview – Get your calendars ready for our Fall Preview: the 89 recommended concerts, performances, plays, and exhibitions to see this fall, all picked by insiders in each field. Chicago interviewed Nick Offerman, the mustachioed, Midwest-bred Parks and Recreation actor who suddenly finds himself the id of Middle Class America with a new book, comedy tour, and a few films in the works; David Cromer, the visionary actor-director who is back in town to star in a TimeLine Theatre production; as well as dozens of other cultural movers and shakers who shared their expertise on the season’s best theatre, art, music, and dance. Plus: Five great entry points into the independent film series of Chicago's art house theatres; the dozen cutting-edge galleries to explore along Milwaukee Avenue's gallery district; and much more.

Drugs in Chicago  This comprehensive special report sheds light on how the powerful Sinoloa cartel has helped make Chicago the primary U.S. hub for illegal narcotics. Sinoloa capo Vicente Zambada—the highest-ranking Mexican drug lord ever to be prosecuted in the U.S.—was arrested more than four years ago, but he still hasn't stood trial in Chicago. Despite such a big capture, experts say drug distribution operations have only increased in the intervening years. Why does the drug trade have such deep roots in Chicago? And what is the relationship between the cartel and Chicago's violent crime problem?

Life-Improving Innovations From handbags that charge your phone to bike shorts that can prevent erectile dysfunction, here are six new products dreamed up in the Chicago area—and the innovators who made them happen. October is a month to get excited about innovation, with the third annual Chicago Ideas Week on October 14 and the twelfth annual Chicago Innovation Awards on October 30.

Deal Estate: West Loop – Formerly dominated by old warehouses, the West Loop is suddenly the
hottest real-estate market in the city. Our real estate writer Dennis Rodkin explains why.

Gourmet Wings – Wings, that standard barroom finger food, have suddenly gone gourmet. We found the five best in town, including a few Asian-spiced varieties and even a duck option.