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Friday 4

Mayor Harold Washington's sudden death has left the city's diverse citizenry in mourning. There have been tributes on the tube, in the papers, at Operation PUSH, and in the barrios--and tonight, a remembrance of Mayor Washington in the lesbian and gay community. Scheduled speakers include Peggy Baker, City Hall's first gay and lesbian issues coordinator; Chris Cothran, vice chair of Washington's unprecedented Committee on Gay & Lesbian Issues; and Kit Duffy, the late mayor's personal liaison to the gay community. Several of the lesbian and gay choruses will also be on hand. The service begins at 7:30 PM at the Wellington Avenue United Church of Christ, 615 W. Wellington. For more information, call 744-1545.

His literary roots, says poet Li-Young Lee, are a hybrid. The brilliant young Chinese-American traces them to his father's evening readings of the King James Bible and the T'ang dynasty poems. Lee, who has won an NEA poetry fellowship, the Pushcart prize, the Academy of American Poets prize, and the prestigious Delmore Schwartz award for his book Rose, will read at 8 PM at the Poetry Center, School of the Art Institute of Chicago, Columbus Drive and Jackson. Tickets are $5, $4 for students and seniors, and will be available at the door. For more information, call 871-6175.

Siegel-Ozawa has never been the cult fave the Siegel-Schwall Band was, but playful Corky Siegel's collaboration with Japanese classical conductor Seiji Ozawa further evidenced what most Siegel fans already knew: this boy can play it all, from the blues to rock 'n' roll, to folk, to jazz and classical. And he's funny, too. He'll be solo tonight at 8, and again on Saturday at 2 and 5, at the Woodstock Opera House, 121 Van Buren Street in Woodstock, Illinois. Tickets are $12, $10 for students and seniors, and half-price for the 2 PM Saturday matinee. They're available by calling (815) 338-5300.

Saturday 5

Ex-Beatle George Harrison says the new music technology makes everything too easy. But just in case it's not, Northeastern Illinois University's Music and Academic Computing Department, in conjunction with Chicago MIDI Users Group, is putting on a Musical Instrument Digital Interface seminar, 9 AM to noon in the A Wing of NIU, 5500 N. Saint Louis. Attendance is free to Chicago MIDI Users Group members, $5 to nonmembers. Information at 583-4050, ext. 2941.

After this week's political posturings by the City Council, 43rd Ward alderman Edwin Eisendrath will probably feel right at home in front of a bunch of five- to ten-year-olds. The former teacher will be reading some of his favorite children's stories at 10:30 AM at the Children's Bookstore, 2465 N. Lincoln. Among Eisendrath's selections is one Mayor Washington would have loved: Twister of Twists, Tangler of Tongues. The reading is free and open to the public. For more information, call 248-2665.

It won't be quite an apiary, but that's not a bad word to bone up on for today's all-ages Spelling Bee at Moraine Valley Community College. Trophies will go to the top three spellers and to winners in three special categories; the first 15 finalists will get honorable-mention ribbons. Organizers of the free bee promise to accept late registrants at the door. The fun starts at 2 at 10900 S. 88th Avenue in Palos Hills. Call 974-4300, ext. 284, for guidelines and other details. (An apiary, by the by, is a collection of hives.)

Sunday 6

The homelessness of street people could make an open house for them a sort of sick joke. But in Uptown, a kind of home turf for marginal people, today's open house at the Center for Street People represents a very real dream come true. Founded by the late Reverend James Harper (himself once a street person), the center finally bought and has now completed the renovation of the building where it's been offering hot showers and shaves, hot coffee, and warm comfort for more than 10 years. Everyone is welcome, 1 to 3, at 4455 N. Broadway. Call 728-0727 for more information.

Monday 7

Latins are incurable romantics, according to Elias Sanchez, owner of Tania's, the popular Logan Square eatery featuring Jose Apolinar and Nelson Sosa. The two Latin American balladeers lead an international round-robin of love songs, from the 40s and 50s to the present, every Monday night. Show times are 7 and 9 PM at 2659 N. Milwaukee, with no admission fee or bar minimum. For more information, call 235-7120.

There are more suicides during the holiday season than at any other time of year. Holiday Blues, a free lecture on how to cope with the emotional turmoil of the season, aims to prevent that. Sponsored by Forest Hospital and Foundation of Des Plaines, the talk is part of a series on adult depression. It begins at 7:30 tonight at the North Suburban Medical Center meeting room, 1786 Moonlake Boulevard in Hoffman Estates. Seating is limited and registration is requested. To register, or to receive a free brochure, call 635-4391.

Tuesday 8

The Chicago Cable Commission seems to be following the CTA's recent example of how to handle the public: the agenda for today's meeting reserves time for comment by the general public--but only after the meeting's been adjourned. The regular December get-together starts at 9:30 AM on the 4th floor of the old Kraft Building, 510 11. Peshtigo Court. Information can be had by calling 744-4052.

It's a funnies sort of night for women in Chicago. First, Nicole Hollander, creator of the popular Sylvia comic strip, will be signing copies of her new book, Never Take Your Cat to a Salad Bar, from 5:30 to 7 at Guild Books, 2456 N. Lincoln. Then a quick cab ride away, at Women & Children First, 1967 N. Halsted, Monika Franzen and Nancy Ethiel, authors of Make Way! 200 Years of American Women in Cartoons, will give a slide presentation of their work at 7:15. Call Guild Books at 525-3667, Women & Children First at 440-8824.

Wednesday 9

Dashing businessman Ron Gidwitz was Harold Washington's favorite Republican. Besides serving on the mayor's civic boards, Gidwitz, a Republican committeeman, serves as host to the 43rd Ward Regular Republican Organization's Annual Holiday Party. There'll be a cash bar and complimentary edibles 6-9 at Jerry's, 2274 N. Lincoln. Admission is a donation toward the group's holiday food drive--cans or cash are accepted. Republican headquarters will provide more information at 477-6443.

Gary Fencik may lead the Bears' all-time list for interceptions, but he's been warming the bench this season. His appearance today at the Superbowl Preview Party may be one of the last opportunities to see him before the 13-year veteran calls it quits. Sponsored by Epilepsy Services, the party features NFL highlights, a marching band, tumblers, and a raffle for Superbowl tickets. The festivities kick off at 6:30 at the Palmer House, 17 E. Monroe. Tickets are $100, $50, and $20, but remember--it's for a good cause. For details, call 332-4107.

Thursday 10

"Chicago: City With a Future?," a free lecture by urbanologists Ed Marciniak and Pierre De Vise, may prove more interesting than originally planned now that Mayor Washington's dead. The talk starts at noon and is part of Columbia College's "Lunch and Learn (Old Issues, New Directions)" series at 600 S. Michigan, Ferguson Memorial Hall. Registration is requested: call 663-1600, ext. 421.

Because minorities are more and more at risk for AIDS, there's been a surge of interest in the black and Latino communities. "Conversations with the Chancellor," Dr. Salvatore G. Rotella's weekly show on WYCC, Channel 20, will focus on AIDS and the black community with a series of interviews tonight at 10:30. For more information call 838-4853.

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