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Thursday, September 11, 2008 

September 4th, 2008. Berwyn, IL. 20 miles. Grass. Cool. Heavy rains.

Jumped last night through the Chicagoland traffic to the lot in Berwyn. Heavy rain anticipated today as what remains of Hurricane Gustav passes through. Traditionally this is a very good town.

Walking through town last night I spotted a banner proclaiming the 100th Anniversary of Berwyn. Couldn’t help but think that 1oo years ago Chicago wasn’t just America’s “Second City” it rivaled New York as the intellectual and artistic capitol. In 1908 Frank Lloyd Wright was designing and building houses here. Hemingway was a boy living in the suburbs and spending summer in Michigan. Clarence Darrow was the brightest legal mind of his generation. Politically modern Conservativism owes much to University of Chicago, while the modern left owes an equal debt to the social movements born here. The Field Museum is among the best Natural History centers in the country, and the Art Institute among the great collections of paintings. Chicago had two world class zoos – still good zoos. Vaudeville thrived in Chicago and circus acts wintered here working in theaters after the big shows closed and went home to Wisconsin and Indiana. A couple generation later the Polack Bros operation settled in Chicago, and the Shrine Circus here showcased the very best in the business. These days the annual Universoul Circus Chicago run is a cultural touchstone in its own way as impressive as the Big Apple Circus during it’s Manhattan run.

We may get wet today, but we couldn’t ask for a better place to be sitting than Chicagoland.

About me

  • I'm B.E.Trumble
  • From Everywhere, United States
  • Ben Trumble works in circus, carnival, and media relations
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