Happy Friday! On this date in 1975, the Broadway musical "Chicago" premiered to mixed reviews.

ğŸŒž Today's weather: Picture perfect. Sunny and 79.

ğŸŽµ Sounds like: Sunshine.

Today's newsletter is 943 words — a 3.5-minute read.

1 big thing: Disappearing water results

A piece of lead water pipe removed from a home in Gary, Indiana. Photo: Monica Eng/Axios

Chicago started offering free home water tests for lead levels in 2016 and shared thousands of results a year as part of the process.

  • But an Axios analysis of reported results shows that beginning in August 2021, the water department abruptly stopped reporting new results to the public and even to one homeowner whose water was tested.

Why it matters: The data from these tests offers a rare public look into the severity of Chicago's lead problem.

  • For example, in 2018, the Tribune used the database as the foundation of an investigation that showed high lead levels in a third of homes tested.
  • Ingested lead can damage children's brains and cause heart disease in adults, so withholding results from homeowners can rob them of data needed to make informed health decisions.

Driving the news: A North Side homeowner showed Axios documents confirming that the city tested his home in early 2021, after an initial at-home kit supplied by the city found high lead levels.

  • But even after multiple calls to the water department, the homeowner, who asked to remain anonymous for fear of retaliation from the city, was denied the results.
  • Finally, the homeowner said, a staffer explained that results can't be released without the signature of two water officials, one whose job has yet to be filled.

What they're saying: "This is a scandal," says the homeowner. "The city is exploiting some administrative rule with a job vacancy to sit on these lead findings."

  • For now, the homeowner is filtering his water and trying to decide between spending tens of thousands of dollars on new pipes and waiting for the city to potentially remove them.

The other side: Axios has asked water department spokesperson Megan Vidis about the allegations multiple times since early May.

  • Vidis says residents like our homeowner source should have received their follow-up results along with "customized recommendations on how to mitigate their [lead] levels."
  • But she wouldn't say why the water department abruptly stopped posting test results in August, only that the department "is not required to publish these results online."
  • And she didn't confirm or deny that test results can be held up because they lack the signature of water officials.

📬 What's next: Reply if you're a Chicago homeowner awaiting water testing results. In the meantime, we'll continue to press officials on other issues around lead in city water.

2. Market Watch: Logan Square Farmers Market

Photo: Monica Eng/Axios

The market: Located on Logan Boulevard between Milwaukee Avenue and Whipple Street, the Sunday Logan Square Farmers Market attracts a young, artsy crowd and radiates a hip but neighborly feel.

Get smart: It can also feel a bit cramped in spots, especially if, like us, you forget to follow the directional arrows.

Photo of a bundle of rhurarb.
We got four bundles of rhubarb for $15 at Logan Square Farmers Market. Darn inflation. Photo: Monica Eng/Axios

The vendors: Sustainable meat producers, tofu makers, chai blenders, and farmers selling spring plants and produce.

Photo of a bunch of pastries in a to go container.
Two types of empanadas from Logan Square Farmers Market. Photo: Monica Eng/Axios

Prepared food: Fresh artisan breads, Dutch pancakes (poffertjes), breakfast sandwiches, grass-fed burgers and empanadas from at least four different stands.

  • Our favorite was the muffin-shaped Baskethouse empanada ($7) filled with vegan BBQ jackfruit. The gluten-free Papole empanolis ($6) were also tasty.

Before you go: The market has strict masking rules before 10am and asks that only high-risk individuals visit before then.

  • "Respect the priority shopping hour for those at high risk of COVID-19," the website reads.

3. Tips and hot links

Illustration: Brendan Lynch/Axios

✅ Ald. Roderick Sawyer (6th), son of former Mayor Eugene Sawyer, announced his candidacy for mayor. Lori Lightfoot's response: "Another day, another man who thinks he can do this job better than me." (Tribune)

🛒 Jewel-Osco has mandated masks for all employees due to an uptick in COVID cases. (NBC 5)

⚠ Police have identified the man suspected of shooting an officer in Englewood this week. (ABC)

📰 The Sun-Times named L.A.-based journalist Jennifer Kho its new executive editor. Kho becomes the first person of color to run the paper. (Sun-Times)

ğŸŽ—ï¸ AIDS Garden Chicago at Belmont and the lake is finally open. Local leaders cut the ribbon on the park, which features a sculpture inspired by artist Keith Haring. (CBS)

New jobs are here

🏃‍♂️ Take the next step in your career with our Job Board.

  1. Director, Commercial Finance at Mindshare.
  2. Senior Accountant at James G. Dades & Co.
  3. Executive Communications Manager at BlueCross BlueShield Association.

Want more opportunities? Check out our Job Board.

Hiring? Post a job.

4. "LGBTQ+ Icons" book comes out

Screenshot of a book cover
Book cover courtesy of Trope Publishing Co.

Trope Publishing Co. is releasing "LGBTQ+ Icons" today, a book version of an exhibition of LGBTQ+ portraits by Chicagoans David Lee Csicsko and Owen Keehnen.

  • The book features portraits and bios of 50 LGBTQ+ figures and is aimed at folks 12 and older.

What they're saying: This is a great way for readers to learn about "LGBTQ men and women whose lives are often edited or removed from traditional school curriculums," Keehnen says.

  • "The world is full of amazing people who lived big lives — some we have forgotten or not known about — [and] we have to celebrate their history and our history."

What's next: The book is part of a Trope series offering similarly accessible portraits of notable figures in science, architecture and music.

5. "The Chinese Lady" amazes

Mi Kang stars in "The Chinese Lady," presented by TimeLine Theatre. Photo courtesy of TimeLine Theatre

TimeLine Theatre's "The Chinese Lady" tells the story of Afong Moy, a woman brought to the U.S. from China in 1834 to be displayed as "an authentic Chinese lady."

  • Actress Mi Kang brilliantly transforms from excited teen to embittered senior after 55 years of touring and broken promises.

Driving the news: We caught up with the talented Kang, who is still in grad school at Northwestern, to talk about the play, which runs through June 18.

The attraction: "I love how it shares the Asian American experience …. It's a beautiful story about hope, perseverance and connection."

Her aspiration: "I hope audiences walk away with hope and a desire to connect with another human … to see someone else and get to know them as a human instead of what they can potentially represent based on how they look. I also hope they don't forget Afong Moy."

Go deeper for Kang's secret to aging on stage.

Our picks:

⚠️ Monica is glad to see so many on-street dining programs relaunching in neighborhoods — including Rogers Park — but she'd love it if the city would post a list of all dates and locations that have been approved.

🥳 Justin wishes his brother Josh a happy birthday! It's technically tomorrow, but why not celebrate early?

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