Old St. Mary’s debate team wins varsity championship

March Madness means basketball and brackets to a lot of people, but this year the halls and classrooms of Old St Mary’s School (OSM) in the South Loop enjoyed a different sort of competitive glee.

WCA discusses variety of issues at meeting

The West Central Association (WCA) held its first luncheon of the year February 26 at Formento’s Restaurant in the Fulton Market area to discuss issues pertinent to the community.

Nightclub future unknown after shootings

Alderman Pat Dowell (3rd Ward) said she will not know the future of Riff Music Lounge at 2239 S. Michigan Ave., the site of the shooting of two men on March 26, at least until the end of May, when the owner’s 60-day voluntary shutdown of the club ends.

Park District OKs plans for Hadiya Pendleton Park

Chicago Park District commissioners have put their stamp of approval on a plan to rename a Bronzeville park after Hadiya Pendleton, a King College Prep student who was gunned down while seeking shelter from a rainstorm just days after she attended President Barack Obama’s second inauguration in 2013.

March for Kids raises funds, awareness for Mercy Home

Volunteers will be out in force on Chicago area streets and at St. Patrick’s Day parades and celebrations throughout March, collecting donations and raising awareness to help Mercy Home for Boys & Girls save children from abuse through the March for Kids campaign.

Local churches to host St. Joseph’s Tables in March

Several local Roman Catholic parishes will host St. Joseph’s Tables, a centuries-old tradition of thanksgiving to commemorate the saint. St. Lucy’s Parish, 3022 S. Wells St., Sunday, March 22, noon to 3 p.m., after the 11 a.m. Mass. Blessing of the table at noon. Free will donations welcome. Call (312) 842-6115.

Economic development pro Carla Agostinelli heads WLCO

The West Loop Community Organization (WLCO) recently hired Carla Agostinelli as executive director. She replaces Martha Goldstein, long-time executive director who retired after 13 years of service.

City enacts Dog ban in Maggie Daley Park

The opening of Maggie Daley Park brought with it a dog ban sanctioned by the Chicago Park District. As a result, the Grant Park Conservancy (GPC) held a meeting recently to discuss the matter with local residents. More than 200 attendees learned about alter-natives for dog owners in the area.

LISC honors locals with CDNA Awards

Organizations that worked on two local projects were among eight organizations honored for their achievements in community development and architectural design on Feb. 17 at the 21st annual Chicago Neighborhood Development Awards (CNDA), organized by Local Initiatives Support Corporation (LISC) Chicago.

UI Health, Shriners partner for pediatric care

Shriners Hospitals for Children-Chicago and the University of Illinois Hospital & Health Sciences System (UI Health) have signed an affiliation agreement to enhance their existing partnership and provide expanded pediatric specialty medical services.