Archive for November, 2008

Get the Gift That Keeps You I-GOing

November 28, 2008


In my family, our annual tradition on the Friday after Thanksgiving is to 1) eat leftovers and 2) make our Christmas wish lists. With the economy in the tanker, this holiday my list is not only pared down, but it only include things I actually need. Like an I-GO gift certificate for more I-GO Car Sharing driving credits. What could be better (for me) and easier (for my family) than that? My family can just click here, and their shopping for me is done. It’s not only a great gift to get, but it’s also a great one to give, so add it to your shopping list today!

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Last-last-minute Thanksgiving groceries in Chicago

November 26, 2008

Procrastinating cooks throughout the city might want to know where to go for last minute turkeys and fixings for the holiday. I checked it out – here are Thanksgiving Day hours for Chicago grocery stores:

  • Whole Foods: Chicago stores are open 7am-3pm, Evanston’s Chicago Avenue store is open until 5pm
  • Dominick’s: Most locations, including South Canal and Halsted, are open 24 hours – Streeterville location is open 6am-9pm. Check here for all locations.
  • Jewel: Most close at 6pm – you can check your location here.
  • Trader Joes: All stores are closed on Thanksgiving, so get a move on if mango hot dogs and organic pop tarts are on the menu.

I pretty much looked at websites and talked to some store managers, so double-checking is advised.

As always, I-GO cars are available throughout the day all over Chicago for lugging around turkeys and cranberries and sweet potatoes (or going out to the suburbs to eat your mom’s or grandma’s…). I’m gonna jump in one to go get my own sweet potatoes for some Thanksgiving hashbrowns:

Merry Turkey Day everyone.

(photo from Google’s sweet LIFE photo archive)

Is green always green?

November 24, 2008

Dudes. Been thinking about how environmental stuff is really mainstream these days. There are as many “green” products and services out there as there are “lite,” “premium,” and “improved.” This is great on some level, but I wonder how much making all the crap we buy and things we do slightly less awful for the planet does for the larger cause. Wouldn’t consuming less crap be much better?

For example, sharing cars (with I-GO, obvs) to get your people and groceries around seems to make a lot more sense than schlepping around town in a Cadillac Escalade Hybrid. What do you think? Are there some “green” things you’ve come across that don’t make much sense?

(Image from Earthfirst)

I-GO Mexican

November 21, 2008


When the cold weather hits, there’s nothing better than a plate of warm, spicy Mexican goodness–like tamales or queso fundido. That’s why I recommend you take an I-GO car to Humboldt Park’s Maiz Anojitos Y Bebidas. Not only can you warm your belly, but you can save cash too. Here’s how: Maiz is an I-GO Chi-Town Reward partner, which means that if you show them your I-GO card, you can get 15% off your entire bill. In these economic times, that’s muy caliente!

Living it up eco-style

November 20, 2008


I just found this list of Top 10 Ecolodges and Green Hotels at the website Independent Traveler. Back In The Day, an “ecolodge” would sound like some sort of hippie hostel in a log cabin where you sing songs about how great dirt is. Not now – check out Proximity Hotel in Greensboro, North Carolina:

Much of the hot water for the hotel and its restaurant is heated by 4,000 square feet of solar panels on the roof, and water-saving fixtures are used throughout the guestrooms and other facilities. Bikes are available for guests to ride on a nearby five-mile greenway.

Guestrooms may be green but they’re also luxurious, featuring 32-inch flat-panel TV’s, original artwork, complimentary Wi-Fi, large windows that allow plenty of natural light, and many other amenities.

No communing with your inner dirt diety there. Have you ever been to one of these eco-green-all-natural hotels or lodges? What was it like?

CTA Charges Ahead in Cashless Transit

November 19, 2008

The front page of today’s Chicago Tribune featured an article on the CTA’s quest to combine their transit cards with riders credit cards. The CTA wants to offer riders the option to use their credit or debit cards on buses and trains in the near future; they plan to start soliciting bids from the major credit card companies in early 2009. According to CTA President Ron Huberman, they “believe this is where the market is heading, and we don’t want to be chasing it. We want to be leading it.”

What wasn’t mentioned in today’s article was the fact that I-GO is a part of these changes going on at the CTA. As we’ve previously mentioned, the CTA and I-GO will begin offering one card for both your CTA and I-GO use. This pilot program is set to roll out in late December. If you’re interested in being contacted when the program starts, click here to provide us with your contact info.

Rally for cleaner air

November 14, 2008

There’s a rally/press conference this Sunday in support for The Illinois Clean Cars Act (HB3424), which would make Illinois the first Midwest state to adopt California vehicle emission standards for cars and light trucks. This from the Environmental Law and Policy Center:

  • Passenger vehicles and light-duty trucks will be required to emit significantly reduced levels of volatile organic compounds, carbon monoxide, nitrous oxides, and other air pollutants including several carcinogenic air toxics
  • Reduce global warming pollution from new cars by an average of 22% by 2012 and by average of 30 % by 2020 and slash air toxics by 13%-21% and reduce critical air pollutants by 5%-16% by 2030
  • Apply to vehicles for the 2011 model-year and after
  • The Secretary of State can prohibit the transfer of a new vehicle or vehicle engines if found to not be compliant with the vehicle emission standard

Sounds good to me – I-GO members won’t have to change any of their habits, except get used to breathing cleaner air.

The event is downtown at Federal Plaza at Dearborn and Adams this Sunday November 16 from 2-3pm. If you have any questions, email cleancarsillinois@gmail.com.

Fewer Cars = Stronger Economy?

November 14, 2008


In a new report unveiled by the Center for Neighborhood Technology, transportation leaders across the country are calling for an immediate and robust investment in public transit, high-speed and intercity rail, neighborhoods that are less car-dependent, more walkable and more affordable, and restoring the thousands of roads and bridges in failing condition across the United States. Funding these important projects has the potential to create millions of good, green jobs nationally, save Americans thousands of dollars per year, and reduce America’s dependence on oil once and for all.

What do you think the new Obama Administration should do to reduce America’s dependence on foreign oil? Leave a comment and let us know what you think.

I-GO…And the Livin’ is Easy

November 7, 2008


We all know life isn’t easy, but there’s an organization out there that’s working to change that. On November 13, more than 40,000 people in 175 cities in 41 countries will celebrate World Usability Day, dedicated to making the products and services in our lives easier to access and use, not to mention environmentally friendly.

This year, World Usability Day is all about transportation. And at an event in Chicago, I-GO’s very own CEO, Sharon Feigon, will be a featured speaker along with folks from the CTA and the Illinois Institute of Design.

Join the fun and register here. Of course it’s easy and also FREE. But register soon because space is limited.

The vote yesterday? Rocked it.

November 5, 2008


Some big news, apparently – America picked a new president, a rather popular guy from Chicago, in fact. There was some party or something in over in Grant Park.

Kidding aside, among the many bits of historic and exciting news that came out of our TVs and computers last night was that first time voters were a huge factor in the outcome, especially the young and elderly.

A few of these folks from the South Side got to the polls in I-GO cars.

I-GO partnered with Rock The Vote and K.L.E.O. Community Center to help people vote and threw a “Party at the Polls” featuring performances by Robert Jones, The Youth for Christ, and the insanely talented Jessie White Tumblers, who would make terrific ninjas if anyone is hiring:

These guys rocked the vote – how did you?