Saturday in the South Loop: Business as usual, sort of
Most restaurants and businesses stay open during NATO Summit
05/20/2012 12:12 PM
Saturday May 19, 2012—Today is quieter than a normal Saturday in the South Loop for sure, but other than that, the neighborhood is open for business.
I did some shopping at Trader Joe's on Wabash and at the checkout, I was told that it wasn't a "normal" Saturday. Translation: it was pretty slow. However, I waited on line for several minutes before I paid for my purchases, which made it seem normal to me. Michigan Ave. looks empty thanks to the no parking order during NATO, but people are still out and about. I spotted a family enjoying the patio at Weather Mark Tavern at 1503 S. Michigan and both The Scout and Zapatista, on Wabash Ave., were enjoying good business, inside and out. At Donna's Cafe on S. State, business was steady, with some customers taking advantage of the beautiful spring weather. At Overflow Coffee Bar on State and 16th, owner Brandon Neely said it was "slow" for a Saturday, even though there were at least a half dozen folks sipping coffee and munching on snacks.
I discovered a new business getting ready to open at 77 East 16th St. (the old Curves space). Long Huynh and Jennifer Nahon were working on getting their new alternative health center ready. Health Elements is moving here from Chinatown and should open sometime in June. Earlier this morning, I volunteered at the South Loop Community Church food pantry. On a normal Saturday, we distribute about 40 bags of food. This morning, 9 a.m. through 11 a.m, we distributed close to 50 bags.
The South Loop is definitely a bit subdued, but it's open for business.