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Bronzeville, Near South Side

King Drive Lights Up As Hundreds Of Donations Pour In To South Side Group

Here's how you can help My Block, My Hood, My City set up lights at South Side homes this weekend.

Jahmal Cole (left), founder of My Block, My Hood, My City, collected donations to light up King Drive and volunteers (right) helped put up holiday decorations at South Side homes.
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CHICAGO — King Drive is bright and festive ahead of Christmas thanks to a South Side group, its volunteers and hundreds of donations from across the country.

My Block, My Hood, My City started collecting donations in mid-November so it could put up lights and holiday decorations along King Drive on the South Side. Boxes full of lights, garland and other decorations poured in, said Jahmal Cole, founder of the organization.

“To me the impact, the worldwide impact this has had in the last two weeks, has been phenomenal. There’s been people from all over the country that have been donating,” Cole said. “People from all over the country and the city have come together to help hang on the lights.”

The group allowed residents of King Drive between 55th and 87th streets to put in requests for lights, too, and volunteers will have decorated more than 100 of those homes by the end of the project. They hope to do even more next year, Cole said.

But Cole said more help is needed: The group didn’t gather enough decorations for the massive project and he had to pay for part of it, so My Block, My Hood, My City is collecting donations to cover those costs.

The nonprofit is no longer accepting decoration donations for this year, Cole said, but volunteers can help set up lights at about 40 South Side homes this weekend.

The final event to help put up lights starts 1 p.m. Saturday at Tuley Park, 9055 S. King Drive. Afterward, volunteers will be able to grab free chicken and waffles at Captain Hard Times, 436 E. 79th St.

Any extra decorations donated this year will be used to light up King Drive next year, Cole said.

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