...PLUS HOTEL LINCOLN’S GRAND OPENING, LINCOLN PARK ZOO’S GARDEN PARTY, WATCH312.COM’S GLAMORAMA VIDEO COVERAGE, CHICAGO AIR & WATER SHOW PARTIES, “OUT IN THE PARK” AT SIX FLAGS, TUESDAY WANTS YOU AT PAWS CHICAGO, MOVE OVER REVLON – CAMP IS COMING AND SO MUCH MORE!
It was a cornucopia of exciting visuals, fabulous fashions, glamazon models, great people watching and the best after-party around: Macy’s Passport Presents Glamorama wowed the crowds again this year at the Harris Theater on August 10th. This new venue provided a different feel to the show with a smaller stage, which (thankfully!) didn’t affect the quality or excitement level in the least and the Rooftop at Millennium Park proved to be one of the BEST after-party venues thus far! The show (expertly produced by Myron Johnson), and themed “The British Invasion: The Music Then. The Fashion Now,” opened with Macy’s I Heart Radio contest winners, Meg & Liz. These two 19-year-old fraternal twins from Nashville became YouTube sensations when their cover songs and original pop anthems racked up 160 million views. Their latest hit, “Are You Happy Now?” an anti-bullying song, features Meg’s soulful acoustic guitar alongside her sister Liz’s soaring vocals. The chart topping duo Karmin also performed – they too shot to fame through their collection of YouTube cover songs, only theirs featured the rapid fire rapping of Amy Heidemann alongside her musician/singer/fiancé, Nick Noonan. They ignited the web when they posted a cover of Chris Brown’s “Look at Me Now” on YouTube; the clip went viral, Ellen Degeneres called and the rest is history! (They even had the honor of introducing this year’s Ronald McDonald Host Family, Janae McVey, and her mom, LaTressa.) Headliner Robin Thicke taught himself to play piano at the age of 12 and by 21, had written and produced songs on over 20 gold and platinum albums for Michael Jackson, Marc Anthony, Pink, Christina Aguilera and others. Macy’s fall fashions featured collections from Tommy Hilfiger, Jean Paul Gaultier, Material Girl, Sean John, Bar III, Rachel Roy and Donna Karan; always a crowd pleaser, the Diesel underwear segment did NOT disappoint this year with hunky male models sporting Beefeater hats, police helmets and billy clubs, House of Lords wigs and, of course, underwear! The segment opened with the guys lined up atop a London bus, tearing off their shirts and marching down stairs towards the appreciative audience. The young British Invasion dancers included some favorites from last year like Bailey Munoz (aka BailRok), who Cee-Lo Green famously lifted over his head in last year’s finale. The after-party on the Rooftop of Millennium Park was over-the-top spectacular with British touches everywhere you looked. The “Windsor Terrace’s” champagne lounge featured the “Queen’s jewels” in a Lucite case while the “Piccadilly Circus” section offered Lancome makeup touchups and a photo booth with props. Delicious food was everywhere you looked with specialty drinks offered at all 18 Patron bars! Attendees included Andrea Schwartz with Dr. Steven Stryker, Martine Reardon, Robin Reibel, Jeff Ganette, Doug Porter, Christina Thomas, Paul Heubener, Kamal Bosamia, Fabrice Calmels, Cheryl Pearson-McNeil, Sheila Musolino, David Sanchez, Rachel Schwanz, Corinne Melchior, Gretchen Klotz, Billy Dec, Ken Norgan, Jose Conforme, Marcus Riley, Nicole Townsend, Marco Foster, Laura Schwartz, Justin Jacobson, Dori Wilson, Sherren Leigh, Kristina and Mike McGrath, Toni Canada, Gale Gottlieb, Carol Gibson, Camille Britton, Lynn McMahan, Rebecca Besser, Joan Colmar, Kathleen Henson, Michelle Durpetti, Stephanie Kroll, Heather Ingram, Kathy O’Malley, Katie Cahnmann, Quenten Schumacher, Katie McLenaghan, John Bourgeois, Donna Pecci, Marcellas Reynolds, Samantha Lurie, Stephanie Teymourian, Sara Jahn, Ami York, Joanne Lee Paul, Tee Lam Dubois, Marketa Kazdova and Sadhna and Narmda Kumar. All of the dancers, models and performers travel to all four cities – Minneapolis, Chicago, L.A. and San Francisco. For the fourth year, Glamorama benefitted Ronald McDonald House Charities of Chicagoland and Northwest Indiana. To date, this event has raised more than $750K for this charity to support the building of the world’s largest Ronald McDonald House which officially opened on June 26th! During the past 13 years, this event has raised more than $2 million for Chicagoland charities. See below for an incredible Watch312.com video documenting this historic event! (Photos by Mila Samokhina and Steve Starr.)
Chicago's newest boutique hotel, Hotel Lincoln, hosted its official Grand Opening Party at 1816 N. Clark on Thursday, August 16th. Hundreds of locals and hotel guests partied on three floors including the J. Parker Rooftop, which has one of the best views in the city. Looking out over Lincoln Park, the zoo and lagoons with the lake beyond is a sight not to be missed! Even Mary Todd and Abe Lincoln were on hand to greet guests as they entered. Neon wristbands allowed party-goers all-access into this charming hotel located at the crossroads of Lincoln, Clark and Wells. Conveniently located near the Lincoln Park Zoo, Green City Market, Second City and Steppenwolf Theatre Company, this 12-story hotel has 184 rooms that begin reasonably at $179 a night. Dining specials can even be ordered up from restaurant hotspot, Perennial Virant, whose beloved food and beverage director Jason Dohmann was on hand on this special night greeting guests with a smile and a hug. Congrats to BOKA Group restaurant owners Kevin Boehm and Rob Katz and Joie de Vivre Hotel Group for this terrific addition to the neighborhood. Guests seen on the scene included Marlaine Selip, Cindy Patrasso, Emerald-Jane Hunter and Ji Suk Yi from “Windy City Live,” Andrea Schwartz, Scott Bobek, Julianne Glatz, the Landon twins, Laura Schwartz, Charley Jordan, Jennifer Sutton, Deborah Chapman, Lesley Prizant Goodman, Alli Turner, Luis Gomez, Patrick Parkey and Mitchell Obstfeld. I'm so happy to see that horrible "Days Inn" sign disappear! For more info on Hotel Lincoln, please click here!! (P.S. The Hotel Lincoln is pet-friendly AND charitable, with a $1 donation per room being donated to PAWS Chicago - more than $4,800 has been donated to date, thanks to Deborah Chapman!) Check out more fun party pics here!
Lincoln Park Zoo’s second annual Wine & Wildflowers Garden Party was a casually elegant affair in the zoo’s gardens with almost 350 people enjoying this August 1st event that included a wine tasting, mingling and leisurely strolls through the pristine grounds of this urban oasis. Strains of bluegrass music from the Bubbly Creek Bluegrass Band, which could be heard over the Hope B. McCormick swan pond, delighted attendees who feasted on Southern favorites including an upscale selection of brisket and pork barbecue bites from Tigerlily Events, deviled eggs topped with smoky bacon and chicken salad tartlettes. Wine stations included selections from sponsors Apothic Wines, Martin Codax, William Hill Estate Winery and Wirtz Beverage Illinois. Tours throughout the night highlighted striking garden displays of purple fall anemone, tardiva hydrangeas and dinner plate hibiscus. Senior VP of Facilities Troy Baresel and Director of Horticulture Brian Houck gave guests an exclusive sneak peek at what lies ahead for the Gardens at Lincoln Park Zoo. Their aim is to create a garden for all seasons that preserves the historic character of the Zoo’s grounds. Founded in 1868, our zoo is one of the country’s only free, privately-managed zoos. (Click here to view more pics!)
The Chicago Air & Water Show is one of my favorite events every summer – Chuck and I always love seeing the rehearsals the day before when the planes fly right over our deck and terrify the Chihuahuas! And although much is written about the show itself, I love the viewing parties thrown across the city to celebrate! I know the newly opened Hotel Lincoln hosted an event as did friends Michael Wilkie and Kristina and Mike McGrath. Wilkie's penthouse home – high atop 1500 N. Lake Shore – is, in my opinion, the best perch from which to view these amazing feats of daring since the planes are right at eye level from the 24th floor. His beautiful home was formerly owned by an heir of Morton Salt so you can imagine the grandeur. Kristina and Mike McGrath's home holds a special sense of place for me since they live at the Palmolive Building, formerly Playboy headquarters. Their home on the 22nd floor was formerly the editorial department where I spent a lot of my time in earlier years so I felt right at home in their luxurious space with two grand outdoor patios...one with a putting green! Partygoers included Sonya Jackson, Korinna Isselhardt (Kristina's darling twin sis), Hazel and Warren Barr, Lynn and John McMahan, Michaela and Dick Parrillo, Susanna Negovan, Sherrill and John Bodine, Mr. and Mrs. Dan Uslan, Gayle and Jim Anthony, Sherren Leigh, Sugar Rautbord, Rebecca Besser, Toni and Rick Canada and Julee White. A gorgeous lakefront, world-class aerial displays and great friends to see it all with – Chicago is MY kind of town! (To see all party pics, please click here!)
I’ve been fortunate to have attended quite a few unique events in my time but this is one clever idea for a party! An all new private LGBT event benefitting TPAN will feature rides, live music and a party-like atmosphere: “Out in the Park” will be at Six Flags Great America on Saturday, September 8th from 9 p.m. until 1 a.m. The park will be closed to the general public for this event, where more than 3,000 guests are expected to attend. Attendees will enjoy DJs Matthew Harvat and Phil DaBeatz, who will be spinning simultaneously as a team. A limited number of bus tickets will be available departing from Uptown on Montrose Avenue, one block west of Broadway. Buses will depart at 3 p.m. and 6 p.m., all returning at 1 a.m. Tickets in advance are $35, which includes admission to the park all day long, free parking and admission to this private event. (For tickets, visit sixflags.com using promo code OUT2012 and for bus ticket info, please visit gaysixflagschicago.com or call 773.878.5323.)
Congrats to the students of the Illinois Center for Broadcasting, who donated their time and efforts for Congressman Danny Davis’ recent Back to School Parade & Picnic. Twelve students happily assisted seniors by serving meals, helping them on and off of buses and with games. The kids gave back to the community in the spirit that won ICB the 2012 ACCSC Award (Accrediting Commission Career Schools & Colleges) that OICB Prez Bob Mills will be receiving in San Diego this September. They beat out more than 1,400 schools and 250,000 college kids in garnering this award so congrats to the students and to ICB on this major honor!
Friends for the Cure is a dynamic group of associates who have been working together since 2003 to help raise money for research to cure diabetes. The founder, Margery Teller (one of Crain’s “100 Most Influential Women”), will bring together more than 700 celebrants on Saturday, September 15th from 7 p.m. until midnight at Chicago’s Museum of Contemporary Art, located at 220 E. Chicago Ave. The night will include strolling musicians, performing artists, DJs and an extensive silent auction that will include a pair of weekend stays at the Langham Hotels in Boston and Pasadena, among many other exciting items. Tickets are $25 each or five for $100. (To purchase tickets, please visit www.diabetes.org/friends.)
I’m sad to report that Chicago Beach Polo won’t be returning to North Avenue Beach this year but the good news for polo buffs is that it is alive and well in Oak Brook! Last Sunday was the first of four polo events this year. Remaining dates are August 26th, September 2nd and September 9th and games are at 1 p.m. and 3 p.m. For more info, please visit www.oakbrookpoloclub.com.
Social Gravity, a network connecting people and businesses that share common causes and goals with the nonprofits they support, will be hosting a networking and fundraising happy hour on Friday, August 24th, at the Redhead Piano Bar, located at 16 W. Ontario St. from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. Social Gravity founder Randy Shipley explains, “This event will raise money for MyPlea.org, an innovative new online charitable organization dedicated to helping those in need on an individual case by case basis.” (Tickets are $15 in advance and $20 at the door. For more info, please contact Sarah Vargo via phone at 224.622.1759 or email at firstname.lastname@example.org.)
My favorite market, Randolph Street Market, returns to 1340 W. Washington on August 25th and 26th! America’s largest and liveliest urban antiques market offers more than eight acres of indoor and outdoor shopping plus some of the best food vendors in Chicago! It also offers free downtown furniture deliveries, a trolley from Water Tower Place and is very pet-friendly! Hours are 10 a.m. until 6 p.m. on Saturday and 10 a.m. until 5 p.m. on Sunday. Remember, early Saturday shopping will benefit Chicago House! (For more info, please click here.)
If you’re in the market for a 10-month-old Pointer pup, read no further and get over to PAWS Chicago NOW! Tuesday is an affectionate girl who loves to fetch and is anxious to bring so much life and energy to her new family! She is good on leash and walks and would probably make a great running partner, too! She sits on command and will need lots of exercise, structure, love and training. If you think you qualify for this bundle of love, contact Sarah Ahlberg at sahlberg@PawsChicago.org.
It came out of the blue: I didn’t even know the guy and had never heard of Camp Cosmetics but when owner Michael Perich contacted me about creating my own lipstick, I had dreams of Elizabeth Taylor and her Diamonds fragrance! Well, a dream for sure but what fun to have my own special coral color named “Candid Candace” and, best of all, getting to donate a portion of the proceeds to PAWS Chicago! He is a dedicated makeup artist with a salon filled with like-minded professionals who believe in their slogan “Women are beautiful...we make them pretty.” My signature color sells for $19.50 and can be ordered by phoning Camp Cosmetics at 630.545.0240 or visiting the store at 480A N. Main St. in Glen Ellyn. I am sooooo excited! :) (Photo courtesy of Amie Hana.)
Thanks for being here and I hope to see you next week – same time, same place! I hope you’re enjoying this glorious weather that makes Chicago the most delightful city in the world!
Love, as always,