Stories by Erica Gunderson

Geoffrey Baer Explores ‘10 Parks That Changed America’ on WTTW

The second installment of WTTW's "10 That Changed America" premiers Tuesday. This time, host Geoffrey Baer looks at 10 American parks that changed how we live and play in our cities.

Crain’s Roundup: McDonald’s Rallies, Ricketts Pick Up Another Rooftop

Crain’s Chicago Business managing editor Ann Dwyer takes a closer look at McDonald’s success with its new CEO, the auctioning of the remaining Caputo & Sons grocery stores and the latest Wrigley rooftop bought by the Ricketts family. 

Chicago Tonight Puzzle: April Challenge

Sandy Weisz returns with a new video puzzle and photo puzzles. Submit your answer by 10 a.m. Monday, April 18 for a chance to win our puzzle prize package!

Viewer Feedback: ‘Felder Has Captured the Passion of Mr. Berlin’

Hear what viewers had to say about our interview with Hershey Felder, our story on outsider artist Lee Godie and our showcase of creatures from ReptileFest when we read feedback from the "Chicago Tonight" website, and our Facebook and Twitter pages.

Viewer Feedback: ‘Why Must Solution Always be Addition by Subtraction?’

Hear what viewers had to say about proposed residential reuse of the Cook County Hospital building and the latest proposal for funding Illinois' schools when we read feedback from the "Chicago Tonight" website, and our Facebook and Twitter pages.

WTTW Organic Garden Springs Back to Life

Winter’s (mostly) behind us and we’re ready to grow! It might not quite feel like it yet, but spring is here and it’s time to head back to the garden. The Organic Gardener Jeanne Nolan joins us to prepare WTTW’s organic garden for a fruitful growing season.

WTTW’s ‘10 Homes that Changed America’ Premieres Nationwide

Chicago's own Marina City is featured as one of 10 American homes in a new PBS series hosted by Geoffrey Baer that premieres tonight.

Viewer Feedback: 'Walkout was to Get Rahm and Rauner to Pass Budgets'

Hear what viewers had to say about the Chicago Teachers Union one-day strike and our story about one teacher who opted out of the strike when we read feedback from the "Chicago Tonight" website, and our Facebook and Twitter pages.

Field Museum Scientists Reveal Tully Monster’s True Nature

Nearly 60 years ago, an amateur fossil collector named Francis Tully stumbled upon an incredibly peculiar fossil. The odd jumble of physical attributes – a tube-shaped body, eyes on stalks, and a long, skinny snout with a claw or jaw at the end – looked like they would be more at home in a Dr. Seuss book than in the swamps of Illinois.

Photos Reveal Snapshots of City Neighborhoods in Late '70s

(David Gremp)

In 1978, photographer David Gremp spent a year documenting 14 Chicago libraries, their neighborhoods and their patrons. Gremp snapped hundreds of images, giving his subjects a simple directive: look straight into the camera.

Viewer Feedback: 'Why Don't We Just Appoint Him King and be Done with It?'

Hear what viewers had to say about Paris Schutz's interview with Mayor Emanuel, our report on Cook County's dip in population and Chicago State University facing closure due to the state budget standoff when we read feedback from the "Chicago Tonight" website, and our Facebook and Twitter pages.

Why the Second City is First in Population Loss

The latest U.S. Census Bureau reported a dubious distinction for Cook County: the second most-populous U.S. county now leads the nation in population loss with over 10,000 fewer residents in 2015 than just a year before. 

Viewer Feedback: 'How Can Teachers Just Walk Out?'

Hear what viewers had to say about our talk with CTU president Karen Lewis and our web story on a new water treatment plant that uses ultraviolet light to help clean the Chicago River when we read feedback from the "Chicago Tonight" website, and our Facebook and Twitter pages.

Viewer Feedback: ‘How Can These People Sleep at Night?’

Hear what viewers had to say about the Nabisco plant layoffs and the upcoming one-day Chicago Teacher's Union strike when we read feedback from the "Chicago Tonight" website, and our Facebook and Twitter pages.

Ask Geoffrey: How Do You Make the Popular Downscope Cocktail?

For decades, a cocktail called the Downscope was served up at Skipper’s Marina on the Calumet River. Its recipe was a closely guarded secret, until now. Geoffrey Baer tells us what's up with the Downscope and answers other viewer questions on this edition of Ask Geoffrey.

Chicago Tonight Puzzle: March Challenge

Our puzzle pro Sandy Weisz returns with a new video puzzle and photo puzzles. Submit your answer by 10 a.m. Monday, March 28 for a chance to win our puzzle prize package!

New Book Traces History of Cinema's Censorship

Jeremy Geltzer

Jeremy Geltzer's new book "Dirty Words and Filthy Pictures" explores the film industry's relationship with the First Amendment and how the definition of obscenity has changed over the years.

3 Days in Chicago: Revisiting a 1949 Sightseeing Tour in 2016

Chicago Railroad Fair, 1948.

In 1949, a Chicago Tribune reader asked editor and publisher Colonel Robert McCormick a question: If you had only three full days in Chicago, what are the things you would see and do without fail? The Tribune’s Rita Fitzpatrick responded with a brimming list, which made us wonder: If the reader returned to Chicago today, what could she revisit?

Viewer Feedback: 'Taxpayers Are Refusing to Pick Up This Tab'

Hear what viewers had to say about the ongoing contract stalemate between the Chicago Teachers Union and Chicago Public Schools when we read feedback from the "Chicago Tonight" website, and our Facebook and Twitter pages.

Viewer Feedback: Madigan the 'Root Cause of the Dysfunction'

Hear what viewers had to say about election season and the ongoing state budget battle when we read feedback from the "Chicago Tonight" website, and our Facebook and Twitter pages.

Ask Geoffrey: What's the History of the Telenews Theater on State Street?

In the 1940s, a theater in the Loop was providing nightly news updates, and a professional cyclist was cleaning up with his Chicago chain of dry cleaning stores. Geoffrey Baer raises the curtain on these local history stories.

Preservation Chicago Releases List of Most Endangered Buildings

(Photos courtesy Preservation Chicago)

Preservation Chicago has released its annual list of the most endangered buildings in Chicago, a list they usually call “the Chicago Seven” – but for the first time in 14 years, the organization has included an eighth structure.

Viewer Feedback: 'So Proud of this Program at Calmeca'

Hear what viewers had to say about Chicago Public Schools’ mariachi music program, Geoffrey Baer’s tour of Chicago’s rapid transit system and Ald. Ed Burke’s workers’ compensation program when we read feedback from the "Chicago Tonight" website, and our Facebook and Twitter pages.

Viewer Feedback: 'May the Force Take it Somewhere Else'

Hear what viewers had to say about Carol Marin’s conversation with Arne Duncan and the latest developments in the battle over the Lucas Museum when we read feedback from the "Chicago Tonight" website, and our Facebook and Twitter pages.

Ask Geoffrey: How the 'L' Do You Spell That?

Geoffrey Baer tackles three questions about Chicago's beloved rapid transit system, including the various spellings of the system, old downtown entrances between elevated stations and Loop stores and a mysterious tunnel a viewer spotted while riding the Blue Line.