Peter Sagal to discuss 'Wait Wait ...', running and Oak Park

'Wait Wait ... Don't Tell Me!' host to speak in River Forest Monday

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By Timothy Inklebarger

Staff Reporter

You've heard him for years as the host of the National Public Radio quiz show "Wait Wait … Don't Tell Me!" and if you're an Oak Parker in the know you might have seen him running around town with the Oak Park Runners Club. Now fans can get a closer look into the mind of Peter Sagal at the Wednesday Journal Conversations evening set for Nov. 20.

Oak Parker Charlie Meyerson, a long-time radio and digital journalist, will interview Sagal at 7 p.m. at Dominican University's Performing Arts Center. Tickets are still available but going fast. 

We caught up with the famously charming local for a sneak-peak on his life and love of Oak Park.

"It's been my home for 20 years almost. It's where my children have grown up," Sagal said of the village.

He tells Wednesday Journal that the people of Oak Park, unlike in his own hometown, are "interested in being part of the community around them."

"The people who choose to live here are people who choose not to isolate themselves," he said.

Sagal is a member of the local running club that meets a few times a week – a group he decided to join after running his first marathon in Chicago in 2005.

His love of running put him in the path of tragedy in 2013, when he ran the Boston Marathon. It was the first time Sagal had participated in a program where runners help lead blind runners through the race, he said.

Sagal was about 100 yards away when two bombs were detonated near the finish line of the race, injuring several hundred people and killing three. He later recalled the incident in a 2014 interview on The Moth radio show. 

The race and his work on the popular NPR gameshow are all likely topics of conversation for the Nov. 20 event.

Part of the proceeds of the event will go Sagal's chosen charity, Chicago Farm Lab, a nonprofit located in Chicago's Hanson Park, 2148 N. Long Ave., that connects Chicagoans with gardening, nature and urban agriculture.

"I'm delighted that I can point people here in River Forest toward that project," he said.

Tickets for the event are $25 and available at Use the promo code WJsub and get a $5 discount.


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