Sunday, March 02, 2014

BE PREPARED: 3 Months From Pride, It's Time To Ask "What Will Change?"

A Chicago police car is turned into a review stand at the 2013 Chicago Pride Parade. (Video HERE.)
The real trouble, which culminated in near-riot conditions, came hours after the parade's conclusion.
There are just three CAPS meetings remaining before Pride Week. Even with the freezing weather, it may be worth making the trek to Wednesday's CAPS meeting to ask what steps the city has taken to ensure that this year's celebration goes smoothly and that we avoid another disaster like the near-riot conditions that spread in the hours after last year's parade.

Police work to tamp down violence at Belmont and Sheffield hours
after the 2013 Pride Parade.
Another valid question: What steps have been taken to improve the mobility of medical personnel during the parade?

If you aren't familiar with what happened during and after last year's event, some recommended stories are linked below. Last year's first annual Pride Fest weekend was marred by multiple stabbings in the neighborhood — none was within the Fest grounds.

The 19th district police commander, Elias Voulgaris, who personally oversaw police efforts to contain last year's mayhem, said last July that checkpoints should be set up to screen the crowd "if we're going to have a parade" in 2014. Yes, he said if.

Of course, there will be a parade and Pride Fest. We're happy about that. The question is, what steps are being taken to ensure that there is not a repeat of last year's trouble?

The March CAPS meeting for beats 1923, 1924, and 1925 (purple on the map) will be this Wednesday at 7pm inside the 19th district police station on Addison.

Beat 1933 (blue on the map) will meet on Tuesday, March 11, at 6:30pm inside Illinois Masonic Medical Center, 836 W. Wellington.

Beats 1934 and 1935 (green on the map) meets at 7pm on Thursday, March 20th, at the Inn of Lincoln Park, 601 W. Diversey.

RELATED STORIES - Pride Fest Weekend
STABBING, WILDING AT BELMONT L: 3rd & 4th Stabbings of the Weekend
PRIDE FIST: More Of "The Usual"

RELATED STORIES - Pride Parade
BELMONT BLOWUP: Commander Calls For Support
PRIDE PREPAREDNESS: Medical Units In Short Supply
FIGHT FOR YOUR RIGHTS: 60+ Batteries Reported in Pride Parade Area
BIG GAY BLOTTER: Dancing on A Cop Car; Urine Tossed
HELLO WISCONSIN!: 8 Cheeseheads Busted in Broadway Robbery
PRIDE NIGHT: Crime Wrap Up
LOW BALLING: Pride, Market Days Organizers Back Away From Huge Crowd Estimates
VIDEO: Pride Party On A Police Car
INBOX: Cops Fearing Riots Force Bars To Close Early
PRIDE PHOTOS: Belmont & Sheffield "After Party"
HANGOVER: City Data Details Pride Sunday Crime

48 comments:

  1. They need to move the parade to the city so the crowd scatters afterwards.

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    1. Not gonna happen ever. The Bars on Halsted use Pride and Market Days to make it through the year. But I agree it's a real shit show now and wish they would do something. Also don't believe it when they say 500,000 people attend it. There is no way that many people attend it.

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    2. Now that is a stupid comment. If you think gay pride makes or breaks a bar for the entire year then you don't know business. Yes the bars do very well that day but they do very well all summer and good the rest of the year.

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    3. But when they have to shut them down early.........

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    4. Those Red Bull stages are a nuisance during PrideFest.

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  2. How about moving it to the Mayor's neighborhood so they can march down his street?

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  3. Just wondering if the authors of this website and citizens have been made aware that due to an uptick in burglaries, the overnight entertainment detail has been moved to days. That's right... Right before saint Patricks day starts drinking/robbing season the district now does not have a Clark street detail...

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    1. Our understanding is that the current team is going to days, but another team is taking over the detail. Possible?

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    2. Exactly. There is still an entertainment team.

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    3. I sure hope the "Entertainment team" is out there every Friday and Saturday night. That's when we really need them. To this day I still have never seen this team. What are there hours and work scheduel?

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    4. 2:39AM - Entertainment detail calls for more cars at Slugger's, 3540 N. Clark

      2:40AM - Paddy wagon called to Clark & Eddy to hold an arrestee

      2:41AM — Fight in front of Sluggers' "Dueling piano" sign.

      2:45AM - Fight at Rebel Bar, 3462 N. Clark

      2:46AM - Paddy wagon called to Rebel to hold two arrestees, one of whom is combative with officers.

      2:49AM - Entertainment detail sergeant asks for any available 19th district cars to patrol Clark Street. Two beat cars are stationed on the north end of the strip because the dwindling detail officers are "all on the south end with these fights down here."

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    5. Was that from Saturday night? Only two weeks until St Patty's Day weekend. Have fun with that.

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  4. I'll let you know about a change in this year's Pride Parade -- I will be in Phuket, Thailand - away from the nonsense, stabbings, and wildings.

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  5. The way Pride is going one of these years someone is going to get killed. It's no longer about GLBT. It's a crap show all about dollars for the guy that puts on the parade and the Businesses.

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    1. You sir/madam are correct. I'd guess half the people down there aren't gay either. Just another excuse to drink themselves into stupidity and oblivion.

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    2. I think we came to this conclusion years ago. We repeat thus stuff over and over but nothing changes. To hell with the bars and Halsted St., i dont partake anymore. I just wish they'd get the area cleaned up as there are other stores, etc I would like to visit in the area still.

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  6. The Pride Parade is just like the south side Irish parade on the south side was a few years back. The city shut them down for at least a year or two til they got their act together and hired private security and have zero tolerance for drinking on the street.

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  7. Thanks for the reminder to book my trip to ... anywhere else .... for those two weekends.

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  8. It's relieving and comforting when you reach that age and discover "things just ain't what they used to he" and bow out gracefully.

    Gay marriage is legal now, maybe Pride parades are no longer needed.

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  9. Charge everyone a $10 entrance fee, and triple the number of police/private security -- not just along the parade route, but the side streets, where all the public vomiting and urination and property destruction occurs.

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    1. This is actually a very good idea. All other street festival events charge a "donation" fee and the group hosting the parade should have to pay for security. They also probably need entrance gates to check for weapons, stupidity, etc.

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  10. Out of control weekend with mobs of battling drunks everywhere. Police are understaffed/overworked. Emergency vehicles cannot get down the streets. Tragedy waiting to happen.

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  11. The money the bars make from Pride and PrideFest(s) will help offset the income lost when residents reduce their operating hours year round.

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    1. "When residents reduce their operating hours year round." People are really barking up the wrong tree with that absurd idea. Never going to happen, so you might as well focus on the actual roots of the neighborhood's problems.

      Hint: It's not the local 20-30 somethings getting drunk and occasionally causing disturbances.

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  12. I have lived in the neighborhood for over ten years now. It used to be a very positive experience, and I went every year....until a few years ago. Now it’s just a dangerous drunken nightmare, and an accident waiting to happen. (God forbid anyone has a medical emergency that day, EMS would never be able to reach them.) I usually just stay home, but I had to drive a family member to the suburbs last year. I still could not get down my street at 6:30 in the evening (I’m one of the lucky ones whose street is bordered by two parade streets). I felt sorry for the obviously exhausted and fed up officers who were trying to deal with the chaos. The parade has outgrown the neighborhood and should be moved downtown to better accommodate the crowds. I wrote as much to Tunney’s office, but didn't even receive a stock response. It’s been painfully obvious for a while now that the people who actually live in Lakeview don’t matter to him, it’s all about the show.

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    1. The parade route changed last year, and I don't think there are any streets that are blocked in by two parade streets anymore. At least that was one small change for the better...

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    2. Route changed in 2012. Many streets in the area are closed even though the parade does not go down them.

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  13. Let's face it, the Pride Parade has become a political tool for the office holders who want to put a show of face and get the hell out of the area. The parade used to be a celebration of gay life. It was a fun time with floats provided by gay business. As the gays have been homogenized into "normal" life, the parade has become less a sense of pride as a tool of advertising for those who want gay money and gay votes. Such a commercial operation belongs downtown. The bars on Halsted will not suffer, as many will not go to the parade. Instead, they will celebrate at the bars with their friends as they do on any weekend. When the parade is over, many will return to the Halsted area. Hopefully, most will choose to stay where they are or depart for other areas. If the parade cannot survive downtown, maybe it is time to hang up the high heels.

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  14. Jeff on BuckinghamMar 3, 2014, 4:48:00 PM

    Just wanted to compliment CWB on the choice of picture (and video)! It pretty much sums up what happened last year. On related rant: Seeing those idiots damaging city property just reminds how much I hate some young women who think every stupid thing they do is cute and adorable.
    Back on topic:
    The reporting last year by CWB of the parade's negative impact on crime should be a wake-up call. Let's hope those in a position to impact change do what's necessary.
    I think it can happen. When that TBOX bar crawl had issues in 2012, the organizers listened and turned it around for 2013.

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    1. Couldn't agree more about CWB's choice of picture - other than the criminals it shows one of the worst elements coming to this shitshow and destroying the neighborhood. Like the St Pat's out of control parade, shut down the Pride Parade.

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    2. Thank you, Jeff. Your comparison to the changes within TBOX is a good one, as is an earlier comment's comparison to the South Side Irish Parade. We'd rather see the Pride organizers take steps on their own before the event is marred by bad publicity that forces change upon them.

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    3. Well, that picture pretty much sums up the parade crowd. From what I saw it looked to be a majority straight crowd. It's the "bar crawl" crowd. A friend of mine said he stopped going when they dropped "gay" and started calling it the Pride Parade. I wandered through the crowd and didn't even run into many people I know. It really has lost its relevance.

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  15. OT

    The 011th District has THIRTY-FOUR units available for jobs tonight.

    How does that taste?

    Keep voting one party into power. Over. And over. And over.

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    1. Will the other party run someone who isn't a lunatic?

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  16. not one voter in 19 will vote mayor tiny dancer in again. go back to Washington dc. thanks for the job not done. what gave you the right to destroy my city?

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    1. Think again. They vote for political parties, not based on a certain candidate's qualifications. Rahm is liberal, and most of 019 is a liberal-leaning populous. As much as people don't want to admit it, people vote for "like kind" of candidates. Rahm will get the Jewish vote, the gay vote, the young dems (no kids, twenty something) lib vote, and the white, non-city worker or teacher vote. It's a sad state of society that people are still not chosen for their skills/abilities, but rather who they are/what color they are/what religion they are, etc... Rahm has done more damage to this city in 3 yrs, than Daley did in 22, and he will get re-elected. GUARANTEED.

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    2. No. We will not think again. Don't try to fool Chicago residents twice.

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    3. The gay alderman for the gay area is a prime example, right? I'm gay and believe in voting in those more qualified and not based on their skin tone, creed or sexual orientation.

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    4. It's quite funny to read comments about people thinking that Rahm won't be elected. Other than this blog, there is absolutely no noise in the city about crime in our area. Rahm has already secured all the minions he needs to win in a landslide again. Unfortunately there are no other credible candidates to run against him and even worse, the majority of people keep pulling the lever for people that could care less about them.

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    5. I'd bet half my bank account on Rahm winning for the reasons several have cited above.

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  17. Remember last year when the Commander had to ask for all available Tact Units from the 14th, 16th, 17th, 18th, 20th and the 24th districts be sent to the command post at Belmont & Clark to help control the violent and damaging disorder? Well, look forward to it happening again this year.

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  18. Off topic: To the good folks who run the show at CWB...today, March 4, is the 177th birthday of the City of Chicago. It is also the 2nd anniversary of the merge between the two police districts; 19 and 23. In that time, approximately 100 officers (25 percent) have left and barely been replaced. Robberies, thefts, and burglaries are all up. Being in a RAP is a common occurrence. The "entertainment districts" on Clark St, and Halsted St are getting more and more out of control, and that doesn't even factor in 81 Cubs games. How, exactly, was this merge for the best? Happy Anniversay Wrigleyville residents. Stay safe.

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  19. I was not supportive of moving the start of the parade up from 3:00p to noon several years ago when that change happened. However, in retrospect, that seems now like a good idea. I think we should also consider moving the start time of the parade up even further: a 9:00a.m. parade start allows much less time for "pre-partying". Also, the earlier the parade, the less likely we will see celebrants who are teens from Schaumburg who are here only to get drunk and cause trouble.

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  20. " Also, the earlier the parade, the less likely we will see celebrants who are teens from Schaumburg who are here only to get drunk and cause trouble."

    Charge an entrance fee of $10 with an 21 and older age limit since liquor is openly available. Don't allow coolers, backpacks or large bags (try to get into Soldier Field with any of those things). Kick off time at 9am with the streets cleared and open within an hour of it's conclusion.

    The crowd would be cut at least in half, and the people who did attend would actually be there to support the original intent of the event.

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    1. I support your suggestions, with the exception of the 21 and older age limit. Kids should be able to celebrate too! I have brought kids to the parade (4 years ago, before it got completely out of control) and they had a wonderful time.

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  21. I've actually always said parade should be run up LSD. Police could close exits from north to foster. Parade route from Fullerton to Lawrence. Minimally invasive to traffic in neighborhood, plus lake front as backdrop and plenty of room for spectators along the parks.

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    1. Great idea - LSD. Mayor Daley use to do that all the time for bike rides on Sunday morning. Never heard any complaints form motorists. The plus side is that it's not close to all of the bars, drug stores and 7-11's that sell liquor and if the crowd gets out of control bring in the Mounted Unit and push them east to the lake. That big body of water somehow has a sobering effect on people.

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