This is a hyper-local blog, and quite frankly, I don't care.
As I was skipping through Snapchat stories last night, I kept seeing screenshots of DJ Khaled popping up, and was confused because I thought the days of people creaming their jeans over his "journey to more success" stories were gone and dead. Now I'll be honest, I never pay attention to Snapchat stories, I click through them just to clear them out, and that's my form of autism I'll discuss today.
The thing that's absurd about this whole ordeal isn't that DJ Khaled is hosting a meet and greet in Evergreen Park (it makes perfect sense for some strange reason), but the fact that this what you see on Google Maps when you search 9518 S Western Avenue
The fucking parking lot of the Evergreen Park Plaza! This may be a shot at the South Side (born n' razed), but why isn't Khaled's agent setting up something at Orland Square? I hate to admit it, but it's by far the superior mall in comparison to the Plaza and Chicago Ridge nowadays. Throw in the fact that they're adding an AMC and already have a Cheesecake Factory, it really isn't much of a debate.
The Evergreen Park Plaza closed in 2013, and was devastating to the great people of EP. The Plaza was a place for everyone, and the closing led to speculation of what was to replace it following the 2013 closing. The largest rumor I remember from back in the day was that it was going to be an outdoor mall, almost mirroring the structure of Oak Brook, but all know there's no place for that on the South Side. People act like they want change on the South Side, but the moment something does change, people run to neighborhood Facebook groups to bitch and moan or just move to Indiana because it's "better than here!''
They're not wrong
But The Plaza played is safe and returned with 30-40 new stores/restaurants, headlined by the likes of Burlington Coat Factory, Whole Foods, Planet Fitness and Applebees.
I'll tell you what though, The Plaza redesigned the Carson's inside of it, and it was one of the great hidden gems on the South Side. I could walk in there at anytime and find exactly what I needed, because there was absolutely no one who looked like me shopping there if you're catching my drift. When it eventually closed after Carson's filed for bankruptcy, I began boycotting the mall in solidarity with the citizens of Evergreen Park on the stance that its government is corrupt. Not sure how, but they say they are and I believe them.
Even though I'm at school in Champaign and won't be coming home to meet DJ Khaled, I know people who are and I would be if I was at home as well. The visual of DJ Khaled, a man with a net worth of $65 million, meeting people in the parking lot of a dying mall is going to be laugh out loud funny when it goes down on Saturday. DJ Khaled going down as the man who saves the Evergreen Park Plaza is on the bottom of the list of things I expected to see in 2020, but with the way the year's going, it's not even the most outlandish thing we'll see by the end of February.
And that was talking malls.
-The Inn Keeper