May 16th, 1978
Joe Angelastri opens the first City
Newsstand on the NW corner of Irving Park Road
and Milwaukee Avenue.
January 2, 1988
City Newsstand opens its main location
at 4018 N. Cicero, converting a small book store into the largest
newsstand in Chicago.
December 1, 1993
The MAGBAG is first published.
May 29, 1994
City Newsstand sells its one millionth magazine.
October 23, 1994
City Newsstand appears on WTTW’s Wild Chicago
for the first time.
February 15, 1995
Buyer Mike Oelrich has coffee with Bob Sirott
and Marianne Murciano on Channel 32’s Fox Thing in the Morning.
November 22, 1995
Joanie Lum and a crew from Channel 9 broadcast a
WGN Morning News segment live from City Newsstand.
December 1, 1995
City Newsstand is named “Best In Chicago” by
May 1, 1999
CityNewsstand.com first appears on the
December 31, 1999
The original newsstand at 4002 N. Milwaukee
closes for the last time.
June 14, 2001
Joe officially reopens the Chicago-Main
Newsstand at 860 Chicago in Evanston. The event is covered by channels 2,7
January 3, 2002
Chicago-Main is named “Best Comeback of the
Year” by the Evanston Round Table.
November 30, 2001
Design Evanston gives Chicago-Main the Design
Award in recognition of improvements that contribute to the aesthetic
environment of Evanston.
May 22, 2002
Joe receives the Good Neighbor Award from the
Chicago Association of realtors for outstanding contributions to Chicago
Area communities — retail rehab.
May 16, 2003
City Newsstand celebrates its 25th anniversary.
THINGS WE LEARNED BY SELLING MAGAZINES
have the largest selection of magazines in town but if you don’t have
the magazine a particular customer is looking for, he won’t be very
impressed with your selection.
— Joe Angelastri, Owner
A lot of
people still want the Sunday papers on Monday. That’s why we try to keep
— James Glowacz, Associate
enjoy shopping in a clean, well-lit store.
— Stephan Pascal, Engineer
isn’t always better — it’s also important to provide good customer
— C.J., Merchandiser
magazine publishers date their issues months beyond their actual release
dates in the hopes that they’ll be kept on the racks as long as
possible. But many people don’t like to be told that they can’t get
the May issue because it’s been gone since the June issue came out in
— Ben Ellis, Manager, Chicago-Main Newsstand
never be sure of what magazines people will want to buy — that’s why
we just get ‘em all, put ’em on the racks, and let the customers
decide for themselves. That’s the only way to really know if our
customers want a particular title or not.
— Mike Oelrich, Buyer
On May 16, 1978, Joe Angelastri opened up the corner newsstand that would
become the largest magazine store in Chicago, and one of the largest news
newsstands in the country, City Newsstand. Twenty-five years later it has
grown into the two largest newsstands in Chicagoland and it’s
still growing! Just how big is the selection at City Newsstand? While the
average supermarket or drug store has up to 20 linear feet of magazine
racks, City Newsstand has 200 linear feet of magazine racks — ten
times as many! Of course it’s not about fixtures, it’s about the
magazines, and City Newsstand has so many magazines on so many different
subjects it can be mind-boggling. From motor sports to music, politics to
poetry, or collectibles to comics, City Newsstand has something for
everyone. City Newsstand’s selection is so diverse that some customers
come from as far away as Iowa and Wisconsin to shop there.
It all started when Joe Angelastri, at the tender
age of 18, bought the corner newsstand at 4002 N. Milwaukee. Joe had run a
paper route as a boy and worked at newsstands as a teenager, so he already
knew something about the business, but standing on the same corner every
day for years selling newspapers and magazines, he learned more about
running a newsstand than a college course could ever teach. He also had
time to think about the future of newsstands and what the ultimate
newsstand might be like. His daydreams started to become reality when he
was approached by the owner of a book store around the corner. They were
looking for someone to buy the store. Joe jumped on it, not because he
wanted to own a bookstore, but because he had an idea.
One of the things Joe liked to do when he wasn’t
working at his newsstand, was visit other newsstands, in Chicago and
across the country, to see what they were doing. One of those stands was
the old Chicago-Main Newsstand in Evanston, which at the time was perhaps
the largest newsstand in the Midwest. So when he reopened the bookstore on
January 2, 1988, it was with the idea of realizing his dreams of the
ultimate newsstand. City Newsstand was born!
Five years later, with the store completely
converted to magazines, Joe got the shocking news that the Chicago-Main
Newsstand had closed due to a rent dispute. Now that City Newsstand was
the only really large newsstand around, business took off. Eight months
later, on May 29th, 1994, Joe reached another milestone when he sold his
one millionth magazine.
In 1999 Joe began hearing rumors that the City of
Evanston was interested in purchasing the old Chicago-Main Newsstand with
the idea of knocking it down and extending the park that lay to the south
of it. But many in the community wanted it to be a newsstand again. In
2000, Eric Singer, owner of the Lucky Platter restaurant down the street
from Chicago-Main and 3rd ward Alderman Melissa Wynne contacted Joe. Once
Joe was chosen officially, he brought in Evanston architect Dave Forte to
bring the old brick newsstand into the 21st century. After taking the
original structure down to just 2 walls and the foundation, a new steel
support structure was erected, a glass and aluminum storefront was
installed, a higher roof was implemented to allow more natural light in
through high windows on the north wall. Another accomplishment was
acquiring the original neon sign, having it refurbished and re-hung on a
newly erected standard.
The new newsstand, in which Joe personally
invested over a quarter of a million dollars, won architect Dave Forte a
design award from Design Evanston and Joe received the Good Neighbor Award
for Outstanding Contributions to Chicago Area Communities from the Chicago
Association of Realtors. Customers seem to love it, too!
Over the last quarter of a century City Newsstand
has become a fixture on Chicago’s Northwest side. When NBC’s Tonight
Show with Jay Leno came to Chicago for a week of shows, City Newsstand was
called upon to supply them with newspapers and magazines every day.
On May 16, 2003, at a luncheon meeting of the
Portage Park Chamber of Commerce, Alderman Patrick J. Levar (45th Ward)
presented City Newsstand owner Joe Angelastri with a City Council
resolution (click here to
read the resolution) honoring City Newsstand for providing “the
readers of Chicago with a valuable resource for some twenty-five years.”
A party for the community of people for whom City
Newsstand has become a part of their lives over the last quarter of a
century was held on the evening of Friday, May 16th beginning at 6
pm, at Harrington's, 4300 N. Central. Click
here for pictures.
City Newsstand, Joe Angelastri’s
flagship store at 4018 N. Cicero
Joe Angelastri (right) in his
corner newsstand, seen here with employee Robert Lee.
Joe in front of the corner
stand during the holidays.
Don Tanagi has been helping
customers at City
Newsstand for over 6 years.
The old Chicago-Main Newsstand
the way it looked when Joe came into the picture.
The new Chicago-Main
Newsstand, after Joe and architect Dave Forte completed the quarter of a
million dollar rehab.
THE MAYOR OF
Dale Sprandel was Joe Angelastri’s
first employee. He was also one of the best. With Joe from day one, he
would work tirelessly at the corner newsstands and inside the store, often
doing double shifts and even a triple shift once or twice. Without
complaint he endured both the heat of summer and some of the coldest
winters Chicago has ever known. His hard work was essential to the success
of Joe’s business. The Chicago Sun-Times was the first to refer to Dale
as the “Mayor of Six Corners” but not the last. Standing on the same
corner all day year in and year out, he became sort of a clearinghouse for
neighborhood news. Dale knew everyone and everyone knew Dale. He is