Chair Free Chicago Holds Bridgeport ‘Shovel Out’

Chair Free Chicago, the upstart local organization with the goal of eliminating people using lawn chairs and other junk to “reserve” the snowbound parking spots drivers dig out, is announcing its first “Shovel Out” event in Bridgeport this afternoon from 1-3 PM.

Chair Free Chicago made headlines several months ago when the first major snowstorm of the season struck, when they announced their new organization and poster campaign.

“As part of our continuing effort to promote neighborly behavior, our founders and supporters have organized a neighborhood shoveling effort,” says press spokesperson Katrina Cabrera. “Our goal is to encourage Chicagoans to lend a hand by shoveling an extra space to help ease the frustrations of heavy snowfall, rather than adding to them by promoting contentious, unfriendly space-saving.”

According to their just issued press release the event was organized:

“To help ease the frustrations that come with a Chicago snowfall, supporters of Chair Free Chicago will be shoveling parking spots in local neighborhoods to promote and share the friendly spirit of the community movement. Chair-Free Chicago is encouraging like-minded Chicagoans to participate in the kind gesture of shoveling an extra spot or two, to build goodwill in communities instead of contributing to selfish and illegal space-saving behavior.”

For more information on the exact location of the event you can call 312-841-1330.

Other information available at the group’s Facebook page or at the Chair Free Chicago’s main website.

15 Responses to Chair Free Chicago Holds Bridgeport ‘Shovel Out’

  1. OIFVet says:

    Amazingly enough I only saw one “dibber” in my neighborhood today. North side they seem to be everywhere

  2. DoR Employee says:


    North side is full of Yuppie assholes…that’s why.

  3. Drew says:

    Yeah, a handful up north. Got my car egg’d just for parking on my own street. So childish.

  4. Pete says:

    There is nothing free about street parking.

  5. [...] their money where their mouth is, 10 members of the group went down to Bridgeport on Friday afternoon to help drivers shovel out parking [...]

  6. DoR Employee says:

    Pete, you’re an idiot.

    Street Parking is free unless you are on a meter.

    City Stickers are the fault of the City Council and Mayor back in the day.

    Residential parking permits are either your neighbors fault via a majority petition to the alderman, or the alderpersons fault because they carte blanche decided to put them in (which they can do).

    Dib’s isn’t LEGAL.

    I shamed a cop into citing 4 buildings the other day due to trash on the streets.

    That’s a 600 to 2000 dollar ticket that each of the buildings condo associations/management companies have to pay because someone threw junk into the streets in front of their building to “claim a parking space.”

  7. CL says:

    DoR Employee, you are awesome. Thank you!

  8. OIFVet says:

    Someone tried to claim dibs in front of my house today. I am against dibs to begin withm but what really got my blood boiling is that (a) this ahole lives a block away, and (b) he did no shoveling whatsoever. Mine was a block where the wind really howled and there was very little accumulation, 3-4″ max. In other words, what the guy did was against the most rudimentary principles of “dibs”. So I threw most of his crap out, save for a mop. The mop I stuck in the snow and to it I taped the following sign:

    “To the person with the yellow Ford Focus: in case you are new to Chicago let me explain to you how dibs work. You can claim dibs if you actually shoveled your car out. You did not, and in any case there is no snow to speak of on this block. Second, although the city tolerates the practice it remains illegal to claim a piece of public property for your exclusive use. Third, it is the height of bad manners to claim dibs in front of other people’s property and to place your ugly trash where it does not belong. If you want to claim dibs do it in front of your own place. Forth and last, I have lived on this block for 20 years and no one here has ever claimed dibs; it is not neighborly so we don’t do it and neither should you. And in case you are wondering who threw your trash out, it was not the owner of whichever vehicle is parked where you had left your trash.”

    I got a kick out of watching passersby read the sign, and they got a kick out of it too. There are very few aholes in Hyde Park who claim dibs to begin with, but this guy was way out of line.

  9. Christopher says:

    DoR, you just said street parking is not free, but it doesn’t matter that the stickers/zones were passed “back in the day.” It applies NOW so therefore it’s not free.

    Also, I think you’re an absolute jerk for “shaming” the cop into writing tickets. What if nobody in those buildings actually claimed dibs on those spots? The property owners and/or renters have to pay for something ridiculous now because you don’t like something that’s been happening for decades in Chicago. Maybe you should go running up and down Western, Damen, California and all of the other 2″ snow ban streets, shaming cops into issuing tickets or tows since you’re all about legality here.

    Also — your claim that the northside is full of yuppie assholes might be correct, but when I lived in McKinley Park everyone on my block used the dibs system and no one cared. In fact, I see more dibs in Pilsen, Bridgeport, McKinley Park and Brighton Park than I see here in West Town right now, and I would hardly call the neighborhoods off of Archer “yuppiefied.”

  10. Mike D says:

    So…did anybody show up for this shovel-out thing? A follow up would be nice.

  11. CV says:

    I do like the idea of everyone helping each other out and shoveling out at least one spot if they have a car on the street. However, since the dog owners in my neighborhood won’t even take 30 seconds to pick up after their own pets, I doubt they’re going to spend 30 minutes to shovel out a spot. So until all the spots on my street have been shoveled out (and each one has to be shoveled out since the plows only cover the middle of the street), a chair will be reserving the one I dig out.

  12. Fransevna says:

    I live in West Rogers Park and have moved here from west part of Chicago. I have never seen my street as ugly as it looked after the storm, the snow was beautiful, the chairs in the street – disgusting. Where I used to live (near Elmwood Park), it wasn’t ever that bad, few people did it throughout the year, I just thought they were crazy. Now I have to deal with the neighbors most of whom appear to be crazy. I am not even going into discussing how selfish etc. it is. Whoever does not understand that it is illegal to claim public property for exclusive private use (no matter whether they have spent 5 minutes or an hour digging their car out) is just crazy to me. So me and my boyfriend printed those “chair free zone” sings and put it on the trees and chairs that were out in the street and removed the chairs from the street. We did not hide, we did it in the day and in the evening about 7 p.m. So only one person found courage to come out and speak out his position, by the end of conversation he agreed with us. All the rest of the cowardly neighbors saw us but instead of coming out to talk about the issue, they just went out to put their garbage back on the street and in the morning we found threatening note on the door of our building. We still keep removing their garbage away from the street and got our car scratched. We have cleared 5 parking spaces on the streets that have our residents permit parking, the first we shoveled was immediately claimed by someone’s chair, as soon as we left. One had 5Ft of snow because street cleaning car shoveled snow to that spot, nobody touched it, we shoveled the snow off and put a sign “park your car not your chair here, if you put your chair here, you will find it in the garbage”. We would do more, but every space is taken, and most are taken with a chair. No matter what, those low lives drug their garbage in the morning to put instead of their cars, I have been leaving notes for them, polite ones, now they don’t even bother to take those notes off their chairs. I am really frustrated, I don’t care at all if all the parking is taken with the cars when we come later home, I enjoy walking longer distances with my boyfriend. But if it is taken with the chairs, we remove their chairs every time and park our car expecting every morning to see new scratches or broken windows. That is about the point, what is public is public.

    I have heard that in some neighborhood last year people who feel similar about the issue have gathered all the chairs around the area one day and made a sculpture kind of a thing. We want to do the same or to rent a truck and clear streets around our area. I just would like to know if some more people do similar staff or what community we should join? I would appreciate if you have some information for me.

  13. Steve says:

    In theory, I agree that “dibs” should be unnecessary and until this year had never done it in 35 winters on my north side block. However, on my block very few people shoveled out their cars (and a few didn’t shovel walks which is even more annoying). I am 65 years old and probably should not be shoveling this much snow — everyone who I read about dying from heart attacks was younger than I am. But the Saturday after the storm I shoveled out a space for my wife who has a bad back. It took 4 hours because I had to carry every shovel full 30 feet to dump it where it would not interfere with others. Until most of the spaces are shoveled out or melt I guess we are still going to claim “dibs” on that space.

  14. [...] after the big snow, a group of about 10 people affiliated with the group went out to Bridgeport to help drivers dig out their cars to help promote the idea of not littering the street with junk to save their [...]

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