Sun-Times turns 75, how to find your mayoral match and more in your Chicago news roundup

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

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A Chicago Cubs baseball fan stands outside Wrigley Field and reads a Chicago Sun-Times newspaper featuring a headline about the Cubs clinching the National League East, Sept. 25, 1984.

Al Podgorski/Sun-Times file

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

— Matt Moore (@MattKenMoore)

This afternoon will be a little cloudy with a high near 33 degrees. Tonight will be mostly clear with a low near -5 and wind chill values as low as -19. Tomorrow will be sunny with a high near 9 and wind chill values as low as -21.

Top story

The Sun-Times turns 75 🎉

For a mere 4 cents, on Feb. 2, 1948, you could pick up the first edition of the Chicago Daily Sun and Times.

It rolled off the presses with little fanfare, with the banner headline: “MAJCZEK TELLS $5,000 ‘GIFT’ TO ILL. LEGISLATOR.”

The Majczek story, which would be made into the movie “Call Northside 777” starring Jimmy Stewart, was about a man wrongly convicted of killing a cop and sentenced to 99 years in prison. The Sun and Times’ first daily edition was a reminder to readers that, while they were reading a new paper, they could trust the reporting. Many of its staff were seasoned pros, including James McGuire, one of two reporters who helped prove Majczek’s innocence.

Seventy-five years later, even as the news business has endured upheavals that surely no one in 1948 could have imagined, the Chicago Sun-Times has never forgotten its roots and crusading mission.

“We’re a spunky newspaper,” says Sun-Times columnist Mary Mitchell, who began writing for the paper as a summer intern in 1990. “We’ve always been a newspaper for the folks who felt they didn’t have a voice in this city.”

Over the years, the paper has featured a storied array of columnists — including Irv Kupcinet, Mike Royko, Eppie Lederer (writing under the pseudonym Ann Landers), Roger Ebert and more. Ebert was the first to be awarded a Pulitzer Prize for film criticism — one of eight Pulitzers the Sun-Times has won.

Our Stefano Esposito has much more on our storied history here.

More news you need

Elections 2023

Finding your mayoral match: Take the Chicago mayoral candidate quiz

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There’s a lot of information to sort through in this mayor’s race. So we created a tool to help you figure out who among the nine mayoral candidates most closely reflects your personal views on important issues.

Simply answer “yes,” “no” or “no answer.” The results will show your match for all candidates — from most to least. Below each question, click “Learn more” for background on the topic.

(To see how the candidates answered the same questions, check out “Chicago mayoral candidates answer 23 questions.”)

You can’t save your place and come back later — but, you can skip to results at any time.

Head here for the quiz.

A bright one

After 30 years, ‘Groundhog Day’ holds up, and you can say that again

For reasons lost to marketing history, “Groundhog Day” was released not on Groundhog Day in 1993, but 10 days later, on Feb. 12 of that year. It received positive reviews and was a sizable hit — and has only grown in reputation and status through the decades, with the American Film Institute ranking it No. 34 in its 2000 list of the greatest comedies, and a 2014 poll of entertainment industry members in the Hollywood Reporter placing it as the 63rd-best film of all time.

And of course, the northwest suburban city of Woodstock, which stood in for Punxsutawney, Pennsylvania, in the movie, will forever celebrate and be remembered as the setting for “Groundhog Day.”

Whether you have “Groundhog Day” on Repeat and you watch it every year (oh the joyous irony!) or you’re new to the viewing experience, here are Sun-Times critic Richard Roeper’s favorite things about the movie:

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As he does every day for 30 or 40 or possibly 10,000 years, Phil Connors (Bill Murray) covers the celebrations in Punxsutawney, Pennsylvania, in “Groundhog Day.”

Columbia Pictures

  • The Chicago connection is strong with this one. Bill Murray and his brother Brian Doyle-Murray (who plays the groundhog wrangler Buster Green) are of course Chicago area guys, as was director and co-writer Ramis. Chicago stage alum Michael Shannon had his first film role in “Groundhog Day,” playing Fred, the young groom whose fiancé has second thoughts on their wedding day, until Phil counsels the couple and they go through with it. And the Chicago-born actress Marita Geraghty plays Nancy Taylor, who is led to believe she went to high school with that rascal Phil, who initially uses the time loop for personal gain.
  • How long is Phil stuck in the time loop? The original screenplay by Danny Rubin indicated Phil had lived the same day for 10,000 years. Ramis once told the New York Times he believed it was 10 years, but later amended that to 30 or 40 years in order to allot enough time for Phil to learn to become proficient at the piano, learn ice sculpting, master French, etc. A handful of pop-culture writers have tried to pin down the exact number of years, days and hours — but let’s just go with a very long time.
  • One possible ending for “Groundhog Day” had Rita entering her own time loop, which could have brought about a sequel. Over the years, we’ve seen a myriad of movies and films that were variations on the repeat-the-same-day routine, including “Christmas Again,” “Palm Springs,” “Russian Doll,” “Happy Death Day,” “Meet Cute,” “Boss Level,” “Source Code” and “Edge of Tomorrow” and in 2017 there was “Groundhog Day” the musical, which garnered seven Tony nominations — but thankfully, we’ve never had a direct sequel to “Groundhog Day.” Which is as it should be, as perfect movies should be left alone.

Read Richard Roeper’s full list of favorite things about “Groundhog Day” here.

From the press box

Your daily question☕

If you were doomed to experience your own “Groundhog Day” scenario, where would you choose to be?

Send us an email at newsletters@suntimes.com and we might feature your answer in the next Afternoon Edition.

Yesterday we asked you: In honor of the first day of Black History Month, what is your favorite local, Black-owned small business?

Here’s what some of you said...

“My favorite local, black-owned business is Semicolon Bookstore. The store recently moved back to its original location in River West. With unique programs — like a wine book club, a literary street fair, book signings and open mics — they are bound — haha — to be your favorite bookstore, too. Also, they provide free books to CPS students! The best.” — Kimberly Gnat

“Badou Senegalese Cuisine, 2049 W Howard. Gourmet street food — a trend they helped start on the growing foodie border joining Chicago and Evanston!” — Thom Clark

“Lorenzo’s Frozen Pudding — the frozen banana pudding is a delicious treat.” — Christina Collins

“Hands down — Brown Sugar Bakery.” — John Brendan Winters

“Brown Sugar Bakery on 75th because they have good caramel cupcakes.” — Jay Aaron Hollis

“Kaliefs Kanvas is Black-owned and they do amazing design work! Obviously no list would be complete without the good folks at Semicolon Bookstore.” — Dimitri Hepburn

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

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