Taco Bell’s Drag Brunch Tour Hits Wrigleyville

As anti-LGBTQ legislation escalates across the United States, fast-food giant Taco Bell is dancing — backwards, in heels — away from an outburst of bigoted rhetoric, and instead promoting a message of inclusivity with a new Taco Bell Drag Brunch Tour scheduled to pop up in May in Wrigleyville. Chicagoans can munch on chalupas and sip Baja Blasts while enjoying the charisma, style, nerve and talent of local drag performers on May 22 at the Taco Bell Cantina at 1107 W. Addison Street, just around the corner from Wrigley Field.

The tour was inspired by Taco Bell’s LGBTQ employee resource group, Live Más Pride, and each event highlights the work of the It Gets Better Project, a nonprofit that advocates for gay youth, according to the Sun-Times. The events kicked off in early May in Las Vegas with stops scheduled for other cities including Nashville, New York and Fort Lauderdale, Florida, all hosted by Tijuana-based drag performer Kay Sedia.

Although Pride Month celebrations are still a month away, many LGBTQ equity advocates are keeping a close eye on big business and corporations, weighing their public statements against behind-the-scenes political donations to conservative politicians. As the ongoing debacle at Disney shows, brands that sell rainbow-colored products can, and often do, hand over those dollars to anti-LGBTQ lawmakers. In 2020, 52% of PAC donations from Taco Bell’s parent company, Yum Brands, went to Republican politicians. Its CEO provided 64% of total donations to Republicans in the same year.

Chicago returns to medium COVID risk and KN95 masks remain the hottest accessory of 2022

As everyone predicted, the end of mask mandates in Chicago has been correlated with an increase in COVID-19 cases and Dr. Allison Arwady, the city’s health commissioner, is strongly recommending that people start wearing masks again. wear masks on the CTA and in indoor public places like restaurants and bars, reports Block Club. The city’s risk level officially went from “low” to “medium” on Friday when the number of new cases over the past seven days rose to 195 per 100,000 people. But Arwady said masks would not become mandatory again until the number of cases crosses the “high” threshold, which is when more than 10% of new hospital admissions are related to the COVID; it is currently 4.2%.

LaGrange Starbucks workers vote against union

Workers at a Starbucks in suburban LaGrange became the first in the Chicago area to vote against unionization, Crain’s reports. Organizers blamed five months of “coercive propaganda and intimidation” from Starbucks headquarters. Six more elections are scheduled in Chicago and the suburbs before June 7. Meanwhile, Starbucks recently announced it was investing $1 billion in training, equipment upgrades and, most importantly, wage increases, but only for non-union stores.

Future of Food Summit Brings More Tech Entrepreneurs to Chicago

Chicago, America’s convention capital (for now), is also America’s food logistics capital, home to 2,600 innovative tech startups, according to Axios, 11 of which raised $111 million in Q1 2022. makes sense, then, that World Business Chicago, which in 2021 raised $9 billion to support some of these startups, will host the Chicago Venture Future of Food Summit on May 25-26. Highlights include a pitch competition for new food and agriculture startups looking to cash in.

Wicker Park Farmer’s Market returns, with dog treats

It’s farmer’s market season again in Wicker Park. The local market starts this Saturday, May 15 at 8 a.m. in the district’s homonymous park, reports Block Club. This year’s lineup will feature 46 vendors, including Treats de Cuisine, a farm-to-paw pet bakery that opened earlier this spring. The market runs until 2 p.m. every Saturday until October 30.

Herman C. Harkins