hi friends!

I’m so happy to have a place to connect with you online, although I don’t think it’s any secret at this juncture that my goal is to eventually meet ALL of my Evanston neighbors in real life!

By now, you may have picked up an issue of our evanston around town. If so, I’d love to know your thoughts, as I consider the magazine a true community enterprise (hence “community retail magazine” in the title!). If not, you can always check out issues past and present through the links provided on this website.

Bringing our evanston to fruition has been a dream come true in every sense. I started researching how to create a magazine during the early days of the pandemic, driven by both a passion and a mission to help bolster our city’s ravaged economy. With degrees in journalism and communications, a background in retail training, and a larger-than-life love of our evanston community, a print magazine seemed like the perfect “answer.” Fast forward to present day, I have met legions of folks who are equally passionate when it comes to the shop local movement. It’s incredible, and every day I find myself becoming more inspired.

Family photo of ande and family
our evanston illinois community magazine

I don’t think I’ve seen a more beautifully diverse magazine. Let me be clear…it is the most beautiful AND so stunningly diverse. It’s so appealing to the eye, perfectly written, bursting with creative design and layout surprises. I really love this magazine. Thank you for bringing this to OUR EVANSTON, Ande!

— Gabi J. Walker-Aguilar

our evanston is the heart of Evanston and its small businesses.

— Lauren Lovinger, owner of With Love

It is more crucial now than ever to avoid the call of the online big box behemoths and consider the impact of our collective dollars in keeping our merchant community vibrant, prosperous, diverse, and inclusive. Our evanston merchants have taken daunting steps over the years to stay afloat, with the majority of them still reckoning with the damage caused by Covid. It falls on us as a community to recognize how the steps that we take are so very important to their long-term ability to thrive. Let’s embrace that challenge!

Leveraging the magazine as a platform to promote mindful shopping behaviors along with heightening our awareness of the many shops, artists, and nonprofits that exist in each of Evanston’s nine wards is something I think about from the moment I wake up each morning. At the end of the day, my overarching goal is to help us connect with one another (fun fact: connect was the theme of the very first issue!). I also particularly love featuring Evanston kids who are BRINGING IT TO THE TABLE when it comes to community action, involvement in social justice issues, and embracing entrepreneurial pursuits. I was doing none of this stuff at their age and am simply blown away that these young citizens are helping create the kind of future they want to see.

Thank you for being a part of our evanston, and I hope to connect with you soon.


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anniversary photo of evanston magazine 2023