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Afternoon Edition: Sept. 16, 2021

Today’s update is a 5-minute read that will brief you on the day’s biggest stories.

Britteney Kapri poses for a portrait at Washington Park, Sunday, Sept. 13, 2020.
Britteney Kapri poses for a portrait at Washington Park, Sunday, Sept. 13, 2020.
Anthony Vazquez/Sun-Times

Good afternoon. Here’s the latest news you need to know in Chicago. It’s about a 5-minute read that will brief you on today’s biggest stories.

This afternoon will be sunny with a high near 81 degrees. Tonight will be mostly clear with a low around 63. Tomorrow will be sunny with a high near 87.

Top story

For Black entrepreneurs, the dream of opening a pot shop remains just out of reach

Amid a seemingly endless series of delays, Britteney Kapri finally got some good news last month.

Baked, her cannabis startup, had been named the winner of a dispensary license in a sought-after region that covers Chicago.

But instead of feeling joy, or even relief, Kapri fell into a state of panic as she reflected on the latest hurdle stymying the licensing process: a court order that remains intact had blocked the issuance of her permit and 184 others.

“I was just like, don’t let it be another year of waiting,” she said. “So I haven’t actually celebrated.”

Like other Black entrepreneurs from Chicago who were named license winners over the course of three recent lotteries, Kapri has been subjected to a bureaucratic nightmare while pursuing her dream of carving out a stake in the white-dominated weed industry. It’s all taken a serious toll.

After leaving her job at a nonprofit in hopes of fully immersing herself in the cannabis business, she became unemployed in January and only started working again recently.

“It’s definitely bled into my personal life,” said Kapri, who’s also a renowned poet. “It’s led to me being just stuck between a rock and a hard place for the past few months because I couldn’t answer anybody about what was happening.”

Tom Schuba has more on how the city has fallen short on its promises of equity for the pot industry here.

More news you need

  1. An accounting firm that gave a clean bill of health to a Bridgeport bank months before it was shut down by regulators also prepared income tax returns for Ald. Patrick Daley Thompson, who faces federal charges involving the failed bank. Tim Novak and Jon Seidel have more on the latest court filings in Thompson’s case.
  2. Despite Metra seeing low ridership amid the pandemic, its CEO and executive director Jim Derwinski is getting a raise — a 7% hike this year, bringing his annual base pay from $285,000 to $305,000. He’s slated to earn $314,200 next year.
  3. One student has been taken into custody after a social media post threatening violence initiated a lockdown yesterday afternoon at Lake Zurich High School. The lockdown was lifted by 3 p.m. and no injuries were reported.
  4. Starting Sunday, the Art of Institute will pay tribute to artist Barbara Kruger’s broad-ranging cultural impact with “Thinking of You. I Mean Me. I Mean You.” It will be the first museum survey of her work in the United States since 1999.
  5. The Sears store at Woodfield Mall in Schaumburg, the retailer’s final location in Illinois, will close its doors in November. Sears’ parent company said it’s part of a corporate plan to “redevelop and reinvigorate the property,” but didn’t provide details of the planned redevelopment.

A bright one

Sept. 16 proclaimed ‘Candace Parker Day’ in Chicago

Sept. 16 will never be the same in Chicago after Mayor Lori Lightfoot signed a proclamation yesterday making it Candace Parker Day.

Parker, one of pro basketball’s most decorated players, grew up in Naperville. She led Naperville Central to two state titles before heading to Tennessee and winning two NCAA championships with the Lady Vols.

Selected first overall in the 2008 WNBA Draft by the Los Angeles Sparks, Parker became the first player in league history to be named rookie of the year and MVP in the same season.

She’s a WNBA champion, a two-time Olympic gold medalist, a two-time WNBA MVP, a six-time WNBA All-Star, a Euroleague champion and the 2020 WNBA Defensive Player of the Year.

The Sky’s Candace Parker has been around the basketball world and back again, changing the game everywhere she goes.
Today is Candace Parker Day in Chicago.
Ashlee Rezin/Sun-Times

Parker’s family and friends, including former teammate Chelsea Gray, were in attendance for Lightfoot’s announcement. Parker had no knowledge of the honor.

“I never envisioned this,” Parker said. “That’s what is so special about basketball. It opens up so many doors. I have the mayor saying she watched me play my senior year. Her daughter is playing basketball now. It’s about carrying it on and trying to open up more doors for the next.”

Along with Parker being honored with her own day in Chicago, Adidas announced three new colorways for Parker’s signature shoe as part of the brand-new Candace Parker Collection. There are only nine players in the WNBA’s 25-year history with their own sneaker line. Reigning MVP Breanna Stewart became the latest when she signed a multiyear shoe deal with Puma in May.

Annie Costabile has more on Parker and her impact on the Sky here.

From the press box

Your daily question ☕

What bar or restaurant do you think is Chicago’s best-kept secret? Why?

Email us (please include your first name and where you live) and we might include your answer in the next Afternoon Edition.

Yesterday, we asked you: What’s something you wish would have been taught in school? Here’s what some of you said...

“Money management, the importance of having multiple streams of income, thinking independently, how corrupt politics is (particularly in Chicago), the importance of eating healthy, emotional fitness, martial arts.” — Elliott Avant

“Mental health education and coping mechanisms. Oh, and accurate history that isn’t romanticized.” — Michelle Hora Mickens

“How the stock market works, credit, and finances.” — Maureen Senko

“How to plant and maintain a garden, how to design and build a house, how to invest effectively or how to start a business.” — Christopher B. Alexandrov

“The real truth about Afro-American History and not starting from slavery.” — Joy L. Grossett

“The real history of bigotry in our country.” — Mary E. Sullivan Bauer

“Healthy negotiation and conflict resolution.” — James Chamerlik

Thanks for reading the Chicago Sun-Times Afternoon Edition. Got a story you think we missed? Email us here.

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