Pinay from Chicago going to Aussie with Oprah

Balitang America TV
September 30, 2010

By Ted Regencia

CHICAGO — After twenty five years, Oprah is leaving her show in Chicago.

Last Sept. 13, she kicked off her farewell season with an announcement heard around the world.

She told her ultimate fans, she’s taking them to Australia.

One very lucky guest was Filipino American Marlita Salvador from Chicago.

During an interview, Salvador was still visibly excited recalling her experience at the show.

“I was already honored just to be there. And then I was already honored, when we found out that we’re gonna be in the first show of her season and that was good enough for me,” said Salvador.

The show turned out to be a special episode for the ultimate Oprah fans like Salvador.

Continue reading “Pinay from Chicago going to Aussie with Oprah”

The sweet buzz in Highland Park

September 27, 2010

Text and photos by Ted Regencia

HIGHLAND PARK, Ill — It was a scene straight from a science fiction movie: Men, women and children in white hazmat-like suits marched as if they were ready to board a spacecraft, or escape an alien invasion.

The nippy September air and overcast skies hinted rain, but the head of the group, Leah Holloway, showed no signs of turning back. In the shadow of the oak-hickory forest of Heller Nature Reserve, she strode confidently ahead of everyone while carrying a smoldering metallic device.

The assembly was en route to smoke out the nature reserve’s beehive. Despite the threat of getting stung, the novice crowd of children and parents were buzzing with excitement.

“Wow, that is so cool,” Jadin Knowles observed as she inspected a swarm of bees sluggishly clinging to a wooden frame packed with honeycomb. The eight-year-old looked like a mini-astronaut in her head-to-toe bee suit.

Continue reading “The sweet buzz in Highland Park”

Evanston Residents Bring Humanitarian Relief to Haiti

September 21, 2010

Text and photos by Ted Regencia

(This is the second part of the Sept. 20 Haiti Story)

EVANSTON, Ill – The news cycle has moved on from Haiti, there are no more large telethon fundraisers or pushes to donate to relief efforts through cell phone texts. Some people, however, have not let the relief efforts move to the back of their minds.

Evanston Alderman Lionel Jean-Baptiste said his group, Haitian Congress to Fortify Haiti, has sent seven containers of humanitarian relief to Haiti, including one 40-foot container of medical supplies.

“We have engaged in the initial phase of trying to gather humanitarian relief,” Jean-Baptiste said.

He also said the last container sent in July included old waterproof sails, which are now being used as tents.
The 2nd Ward alderman also emphasized the need of “building capacity” in many of the devastated communities. Continue reading “Evanston Residents Bring Humanitarian Relief to Haiti”

Evanston Parish a Wellspring of Hope for Haitians
September 20, 2010

Text by Ted Regencia

EVANSTON, Ill — Rosalie Selinger Murphy, 45, is a familiar face at Evanston’s St. Nicholas Catholic Church. Her kindly smile and unassuming demeanor conveys goodwill; her calm yet jovial voice, reassuring.

Last Sept. 12, eight months to the day a powerful earthquake struck Haiti and killed 220,000 people, Murphy left for the capital Port-au-Prince, and traveled 80 miles north to Limonade, to bring what she calls “hope for the future” to many poverty-stricken families and students.

Murphy, a wife and mother of two, is the chairman of St. Nicholas’ Sharing Committee, a group that has organized micro-lending and scholarship programs for Haitians since 1998. In the aftermath of the devastating earthquake, Murphy’s organization has taken on much greater importance.

Continue reading “Evanston Parish a Wellspring of Hope for Haitians”

Amid Qur’an controversy, Muslims celebrate Eid
September 11, 2010

Text and photos by Ted Regencia

SKOKIE, Ill — Friday marks the first full day of Eid al-Fitr, a three-day feast celebrating the end of Ramadan, a month-long period of prayer and fasting for Muslims.

Amid twin controversies over the threat of Qur’an burning in Florida, and the planned construction of the Cordoba House mosque in New York, Skokie-area Muslims thronged to the Muslim Community Center (MCC) in Morton Grove to reflect and celebrate.

Niles North student Zohra Raja, 16, and younger sister Sara, 13, were in a lively mood as they emerged from prayer. The Raja sisters, whose family comes from Lahore, Pakistan, were looking forward to getting together with relatives to share “lots of spicy food” and receive monetary gifts from elders.
Continue reading “Amid Qur’an controversy, Muslims celebrate Eid”

Chicago legend sings the blues to save Skokie Theatre
September 7, 2010

Text and photos by Ted Regencia

SKOKIE, Ill — The New York Times once raved about him as “the sort of exuberant entertainer who can turn a concert into a party.”

Last Sunday, Eddy Clearwater lived up to the expectation once more, as he turned the small crowd at the Skokie Theatre into a boisterous rhythm and blues revelry.

The rare Skokie performance by the Chicago blues legend is part of an ongoing community effort to save the storied theater from possible bank takeover. Just two weeks from now his busy schedule will bring him to Dunkerque, France, and on to the Netherlands in November.

In between the soulful execution of an original, “Slow and Easy is My Style,” and the spicy “I Love You,” the Skokie-based artist declared, “[The theater] needs to be here and it needs to be alive.”

With his every distinct Chicago riff and his husky voice, the Mississippi native injected just the right kind of musical dose into his impassioned plea. Continue reading “Chicago legend sings the blues to save Skokie Theatre”