CHICAGO (CBS)—Shoppers in Chicago often gravitate to the Magnificent Mile or suburban malls like Woodfield. Englewood is, perhaps, not at the top of the list.
But now the South Side community is hoping to get a piece of the holiday pie.READ MORE: Chicago Sky Win First WNBA Championship As They Top Phoenix Mercury
Holiday shoppers at Corie Luckett’s store on 63rd Street find apparel reflecting pride in a community often seen as bleak by the outside world.
“It’s important because we’ve had such a bad rap,” Luckett said. “I just wanted to be able to bring some positivity.”
Luckett calls it “Englewood Branded.” Every sweatshirt, every hat he makes right there reflects a vibrant spirit that says “I’m from Englewood, and I’m happy to be here.”
Aysha Butler is with Resident Association of Greater Englewood.
“They want to represent the community they live in,” Butler said. They love that. When you’re sometimes minimized or either always depicted negatively, it’s place like this that make you feel good to call this place home.”READ MORE: Jubilant And Inspired Fans, Booming Businesses Near Wintrust Arena As Chicago Sky Win WNBA Championship
It’s home, where Ali Powell’s barber shop is about more than just cutting hair. It serves as something of a community center.
“Ninety percent of the people here are good and 90 percent of things that are happening here are good,” Powell said.
It’s home, where Jerwayne Valentine’s hot dogs are so popular he’ll be able to open new stand next year. It’s at 63rd and Halsted, once one of Chicago’s premier shopping districts before falling on hard times. But now it’s anchored by Whole Foods.
“I like to call this the Englewood business district because this is where everything happens in Englewood,” Valentine said.
And home is where Aysha Butler took a vacant lot and made it what she calls an oasis of peace.MORE NEWS: Chicago Weather: Slow Warm-Up Beginning
“I want to repurpose this. If you’re here, you know you’re safe,” Butler said. “My work has always been community development of the mind first and that’s the same way with the holiday spirit – how do you feel in your mind?”