German Village residents saw changes in personnel in the German Village Society offices and new life for an iconic building. Here's a brief recap of five of the year's top stories:
SOCIETY STAFF TURNOVER -- Mum was the official word at the German Village Meeting Haus when three employees -- 75% of the workforce -- abruptly quit during the summer.
Nancy Kotting, historic-preservation advocate; Chelsey Craig, manager of business- and events-relations manager; and Jena Wilson, development and marketing coordinator; all left with little explanation.
A decision to recast the duties of each position led to more tension and confusion among current and former board officials.
Dustin Speakman later was hired as manager of events and engagement, and Salvatore Reedus became development coordinator. Andrew Dodson will become manager of historic preservation and outreach Jan. 7.
NEW PLAN FOR ICONIC SPACE -- Max & Erma's, closed in August 2017, was transformed into a combined co-working space, restaurant and bar. The new concept opened in March at 739 S. Third St.
SUSPENDED ART -- Polish artist Jerzy Jotka Kedziora and five of his contemporaries spent an October day installing "Suspension: Balancing Art, Nature and Culture" in Schiller Park.
The lifelike figures, made of epoxy resin and some metallic elements, are positioned throughout the park, in the pond and on an island in the pond.
ART CRAWL HIATUS -- The Art Crawl took a year off as its organizers, Greg Gamier and Jeff Lowe, planned to hand it off to another group of volunteers.
The new organizer, Jessica Holland, had said it would take at least a year to plan.
NEW BOUTIQUE HOTEL ... MAYBE -- A proposed boutique hotel in German Village created a firestorm among neighbors, who expressed concern over noise, parking and disturbance of the historical fabric in the community.
The McGown would be bounded by Livingston Avenue, City Park Avenue, Blenkner Street and Pearl Street, with the main entrance at Pearl and Livingston.
The developer withdrew the plans at the Dec. 3 German Village Commission meeting, vowing to return in January to will ask for a vote.