As of January 1, 2016, Gapers Block is on indefinite hiatus. The site will remain up in archive form while we evaluate our options, which may include a redesign or sale.
 Thank you for your readership and contributions over the past 12-plus years. 


Sunday, February 19

Gapers Block

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Gapers Block went live on April 25, 2003, with a Merge post about the Berghoff adding seats in the bar. The first couple Fuel questions were kind of silly, but got down to business soon enough.

The oldest Slowdown calendar entry was on May 1, 2003. We went fully public on May 5, and on that day Shylo Bisnett's "A Dialogue Between KISS & ABBA" was our first Detour feature.

We launched Airbags, our collection of columns, on Sept. 2, 2003, beginning with Ramsin Canon's Revenge of the Second City, Alice Maggio's Ask the Librarian, Media Warm & Tepid by various authors, and Cinnamon Cooper's One Good Meal.

A couple things from the earliest days of the site are missing -- including the first incarnation of Transmission, a weekly mp3 from a local artist, shared in a box on the front page. It was hand-coded and uploaded by FTP, so there was no archive. And the first 14 months of Rearview were lost in a server transfer, so the earliest we have in the archives is from July 9, 2004.

It's good to look back at where we started, so we have perspective on where we are today, and where we're going from here. This may be the end of Gapers Block for now, but it's not the end of the incredible work being done by the writers who made the site such an invaluable resource for Chicagoans -- nor is it the end of independent journalism in Chicago. It will just be (temporarily, I'm positive) harder to find. The mission for you is still the same: Slow down and check out the city. Thank you for coming along on this particular ride.

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