Ald. Jane Grover looks to bring small professional athletic events to Northwestern

Cat Zakrzewski, Web Editor

Ald. Jane Grover (7th) on Monday night asked the Zoning Committee of the Plan Commission to allow small-scale professional athletic events on Northwestern property.

Grover’s referral came days after she received a request from the NU athletic department to allow the Chicago Sky women’s professional basketball team to play its tie-breaker playoff game in Welsh-Ryan Arena on Monday night. Although the team did not advance to the contest, she said the department and city could not find a way to bring the event to campus.

“There was no way to do that even though Evanston Township High School is able to host professional women’s tackle football at Lazier Field,” Grover said at Monday night’s City Council meeting.

She called on the committee to figure out how to make similar events happen in the future, noting the Chicago Sky was only anticipating 5,000 attendees.

“I’m not looking for us to host professional football, whole series or a whole season, but I think this would be the kind of event that would not have a huge impact on the neighborhood but would bring some really good fans to Evanston to spend their money and use otherwise idle athletic facilities,” she said.

— Cat Zakrzewski