By Laura Taylor

FIRST GUEST: Stephanie Hoffman, Assistant Director of Heartland Animal Shelter

Heartland Animal Shelter has found homes for nearly 10,000 cats and dogs since first opening its doors in 2002.  Primarily a volunteer-based non-profit organization, Heartland thrives on the generosity of members of the community who have donated their time, money, and supplies to benefit the animals at the shelter.

Even Miranda Lambert’s MuttNation Foundation recognizes Heartland as one of the best animal shelters in the country! In fact, just take a look at these remarkable before and after photos. The love these animals receive at Heartland is priceless, and it’s all thanks to their workers, volunteers, and supporters.

Click banner for more details, or visit

Click banner for more details, or visit

On Saturday, November 5th, they’re hosting their largest fundraiser of the year: The Golden Paws Gala! It will be held at Pinstripes in Northbrook (near the intersection of Willow and Waukegan). Doors open at 6:00 pm, and guests will enjoy appetizers, dinner, a champagne toast, bocce ball, entertainment, and some terrific silent and live auction prizes!

Some items up for grabs in the auctions include: Little Big Town and Scotty McCreery autograph, ABT gift card, overnight stay at The Drake, wine tastings, gym memberships, salon gift certificates, and much more! Supporters will also enjoy the Golden Paw Awards, when fun photos of pets will be judged in certain categories! Click here to see more auction items.

Attendees are also encouraged to start their own fundraising page. Those who raise at least $300 by October 21st will attend the Gala FOR FREE, along with a guest!

Get your tickets now and take a look at more upcoming events at

SECOND GUEST: Tim O’Brien, Executive Director of Open Books

Open Books is a literacy non-profit that provides literacy experiences for thousands of readers each year through inspiring programs. Last year, they donated over 130,000 high-quality books to schools all around Chicagoland!

On Friday, November 4th, they’re hosting a fun competition called Make the Case, when 30 teams will compete to make the most creative bookcase ever! Spectators are welcome to cheer them on while enjoying food, drinks, music, and raffle prizes such as Bears tickets. Then, the cases are stocked with books which are donated to classrooms all over the Chicago area.

You can also support Open Books by visiting one of their stores: in the west loop at 651 W. Lake, and Pilsen at 905 W. 19th Street.

Visit to learn more.

THIRD GUEST: Carey Pinkowski, Chicago Marathon Race Director

Today’s the day for the Chicago Marathon!

Carey tells us what racers and spectators alike can expect from this year’s race.

Learn more at

Weekend Journal airs Sunday mornings at 6:30 on US99 and 6:00 on HD2 The Wolf.





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