πŸ—“ Happy Wednesday! Today is "Chicago Day of the Girl," "National Coming Out Day" and "National Sausage Pizza Day." Feels like the day is already planned.

Situational awareness: A mother and daughter from Evanston are among the missing in Israel and Gaza, and their family believes they may have been taken hostage by Hamas.

Today's newsletter is 926 words β€” a 3.5-minute read.

1 big thing: Migrant crisis challenges mount

Photo illustration: Shoshana Gordon/Axios. Photo: Spencer Platt/Getty Images

Mayor Brandon Johnson is expected to unveil a budget plan this morning to address the city's $538 million deficit, about $200 million of which comes from migrant aid spending.

Why it matters: This deficit offers a strong reminder of how the escalating migrant crisis is challenging the grand plans Johnson outlined on the campaign trail for a bold, progressive agenda β€” one that may take more time to achieve than he had thought.

What's happening: Several alders are pressuring the Johnson administration to address what they say are poor living conditions at some migrant shelters and police stations.

  • Meanwhile, the mayor's office still has not selected a start date or locations for a plan to move migrants into tented "base camps." The administration is considering backup plans, the Tribune reports.
  • This all comes as the city faces a lawsuit from South Shore residents seeking to block the city from housing migrants in public buildings, including schools.

What they're saying: Alds. Brendan Reilly and Brian Hopkins are so shocked by the "deplorable" situation at Streeterville's Inn of Chicago shelter that they're calling for its closing, Block Club reports.

  • Ald. Nicole Lee sent a letter to Johnson about the "untenable" situation at the police district on Halsted and 31st, where she says nearly 300 people have been living at a time.
  • In the letter, Lee suggests the city send representatives to the border to combat disinformation about resources in Chicago. Johnson says he plans to do just that.

The latest: This week, the city halted plans to open a shelter at the Amundsen Park Fieldhouse on the far West Side after pushback from locals.

  • Some raised concerns about the loss of park district programming for kids, as well as inadequate heating and space for migrants, per the Sun-Times.

What we're watching: The Biden administration is resuming deportation flights for Venezuelans who have not qualified for protection, but it remains unclear how the new order will affect those in Chicago, if at all.

What's ahead: Tomorrow the city will hold a community meeting on a proposed migrant shelter in Ukrainian Village, an area that has welcomed thousands of Ukrainian refugees.

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2. Map of the day: 🚍 Migrant bus routes

Where Texas bused approximately 51,840 migrants
Data: Texas Governor Office; Map: Deena Zaidi/Axios Visuals

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott has sent at least 13,500 migrants on 290 buses to Chicago since his busing operation began last year.

Why it matters: That represents roughly 70% of the more than 18,000 migrants the city has reported receiving since August 2022, 10,817 of whom are still living in city shelters.

  • Another 3,526 are awaiting a spot at a shelter β€” 2,894 at police stations and 632 at O'Hare.

3. Closing Time: September edition

Illustration: Brendan Lynch/Axios

Every month, we look back on businesses that have recently closed up shop.

Here are some September closings:

  • The biggest high-profile closing was high atop the former John Hancock Center. The Signature Room still has some legal issues, but for many Chicagoans it's all about the memories.
  • Another restaurant holding a special place in Chicago's heart is CafΓ© Selmarie in Lincoln Square. The restaurant announced it will close early in 2024 after serving the North Side neighborhood for 40+ years.
  • And it's rare to see a Boka Group restaurant close up shop in less than a year, but the expansive French restaurant Le Select is done in River North.

It's not just restaurants: The Joy Room Chicago is leaving Portage Park, but the incubator for entrepreneurs is looking to relocate in South Shore. An Orange Moon vintage shop in Humboldt Park liquidated after 14 years.

More closings

4. Tips and hot links: The Bedard era begins

Connor Bedard celebrates after assisting on a goal during the second period against the Pittsburgh Penguins last night. Photo: Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images

πŸ’ Rookie Connor Bedard recorded his first NHL assist last night in the Blackhawks’ surprise victory over Pittsburgh. (The Athletic)

πŸ§— Chicago police arrested an anti-abortion activist for scaling Accenture Tower yesterday. (Sun-Times)

βœ‰οΈ A Cubs employee was hospitalized after having an allergic reaction to an unknown substance that was mailed to the team's offices. Police are investigating. (NBC 5)

πŸ€ WNBA legend Teresa Weatherspoon will reportedly be the next head coach of the Chicago Sky. (Tribune)

Stay booked and busy

πŸ“… Upcoming events around the city.

Tacos & Tequila Fest at the Zoo - Adults Only Evening at Lincoln Park Zoo on Oct. 13:

  • Pop-up bars with canned tequila cocktails, margaritas and other adult beverages for purchase throughout the zoo. Specialty tacos crafted by the chefs at Levy Restaurants available for purchase. Live salsa and bachata music and lessons performed by Chicago's own Enrique Calderon and His Orchestra! Live DJ on South Lawn.
  • Lawn games and plenty of spaces to relax and refresh with friends and family. Free rides on the AT&T Endangered Species Carousel Giveaways and more!
  • Ticketed events help keep Lincoln Park Zoo free and open to all 365 days a year. Support your zoo while sipping a cocktail!

Hosting an event? Email [email protected].

5. πŸšͺ Open House Chicago's must-see spots

Saints Volodymyr & Olha Ukrainian Catholic Church is one of the spots in Ukrainian Village featured in this weekend's Open House Chicago. Photo: Carrie Shepherd/Axios

Chicago Architecture Center opens the doors to more than 170 venues for this weekend's Open House Chicago.

What's happening: With such a long list, it can be difficult to know where to start. Check out these spots recommended by Jen Masengarb, executive director of the American Institute of Architects Chicago chapter:

  • Climate Action Museum: West Loop β€” The new museum is one of only eight climate museums in the world.
  • Build Headquarters: Austin β€” The youth center moved to the former Shore Bank building in 2011.
  • Pullman National Historic Park: Pullman β€” Check out the museum and new artist lofts next door.

Be smart: CAC gave us tips on how to get the most bang for your (metaphorical) buck.

Our picks:

  • Carrie: Designed by the state's first licensed African American architect, First Church of Deliverance in Bronzeville was integral in Chicago's place as the birth of gospel music.
  • Monica: Chicago Bridgehouse Museum at Wacker and Michigan offers a compact history of the city's most important bridge, including views of the gears that make it work.
  • Justin: Glessner House, baby!

Go deeper

6. 🐰 Where's Justin? The Bunny Hutch

Justin was at the Bunny Hutch! Photo: Justin Kaufmann/Axios

This was a tough one. Many of you guessed Par-King Skill Golf in Lincolnshire, which is a great mini-golf spot for sure. But the correct answer was Novelty Golf & Games at Devon and Lincoln Avenues, better known by the hot dog stand in front of it: The Bunny Hutch.

  • It offers mini-golf, batting cages and soft serve ice cream β€” the trifecta of good times in Chicago.

Congrats to Jennifer M. and John F., whose names we pulled out of a magic hat.

  • Pick up your swag at our next event, coming soon!

Our picks:

πŸ‘» Carrie has Halloween decorations up at home and is ready to get into the spooky spirit with some of these haunted houses!

🎞 Monica is excited about the Chicago Film Festival's Opening Night Block Party tonight near the Music Box theater. Last year's inaugural Block Party was such a refreshing change from the usual stuffy VIP opening night galas.

πŸ•Έ Justin is disappointed that the guy who scaled the Ogilvie train station building wasn't in a Spider-Man costume. Have we no respect for tradition?

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