Candid Candace: Television



IMG_1323I might be late with my blog, but I'm sure not going anywhere. After 13 years, is still here and I'm hoping you agree, better late than never! So much has happened since we last talked. Chicago Star, which is growing by leaps and bounds, celebrated its first birthday, Valentine's Day came and went, and finally we're seeing signs of

Restaurant Lola 41 with Ken Norgan and Sebastian Krug.

Spring. As in years past, Chuck and I have been very fortunate to have the opportunity to get to a warmer clime for a winter vacation. Palm Beach has become one of our top spots in Florida but, truth be told, we would take any part of this great state. We love everything about it. When you first arrive in town, there is nothing like seeing this sign:

We were thrilled to meet Guy Fieri at Buccan!

This way to the beaches. I need to have this hanging over my bed as a sign of hope and happiness. (I know you all know what I mean.) Our hostess has an exquisite home half block from the ocean and, even though she says she's not finished decorating and revamping, I think it's definitely ready for Architectural Digest. Her taste is impeccable. We

See Captain John (out of the Sailfish Marina) for the best boat tour in town.

enjoyed so many restaurants there, here's a rundown of our favorites--Buccan is at the top of this list. First off, because it stays open later than most, second for the food (they

Swifty's, with Chuck and Leslie Hindman.

have sushi!) and thirdly for the trendy, chic clientele. On one of our nights there, we ran into Food Network's Guy Fieri. His "Diners, Drive-ins and Dive" series spotlighted two of our top Chicago restaurants, Tufano's and La Scarola. When I reminded him of this, his face lit up--he said he just loves these two Chicago favorites (almost as much as we do!) We dined at almost every spot we could find---Green's Pharmacy (we like it wayyyy better than Surfside Cafe, maybe because of the quirky serving staff and cast of characters who dine there regularly), Le Bilboquet, Bricktop's, La Goulue, Bice, Palm Beach

Dinner at Cafe Flore with Michelle Durpetti and Collin Pierson.
Entry to "Oh, My Chocolates!" on Clematis in West Palm Beach. They had me at stuffed animals.

Grill, Lola 41 (in the White Elephant Hotel), Swifty's, Pizza al Fresco, Renato's, Rhythm Cafe, Polpo Palm Beach (in Eau Palm Beach), Sushi Jo, Sailfish Marina & Resort, Kabuki Sushi, Echo Restaurant, Cafe Boulud, Elisabetta's, Howley's (if you like an old Howard Johnson's feel which we do!), Rocco's Tacos and more. And then we wonder why we're gaining weight but, when you're on vacation, every night seems like the Fourth of July! We would also recommend Captain John for a delightful, informative boat

Pizzeria al Fresco--3-3-22
Another favorite, Pizzeria al Fresco.

tour of the island. He came highly recommended and didn't

Cocktails at Nancy Traylor's beautiful home by the sea with Leslie Hindman. 

disappoint. He has a encyclopedic knowledge of Palm Beach and the people who live there, but you have to book ahead (at the Sailfish Marina) as his tours fill up fast. On this trip, it seems like there were more Chicagoans there than in Chicago! Bill Zwecker and Tom Gorman, Mary Clare and Ken Moll, Michelle Durpetti and Collin Pierson, Nancy Traylor, Leslie Hindman, Peggy Martay, Marci Holzer (celebrating her birthday nearby in Miami Beach), Ken Norgan and so many others. We noticed some things were different in Palm Beach than in year's past....more restaurants, more chic, young peeps and a major problem getting restaurant reservations. I was told

Filming for RTL Media at friend Kim Renk Dryer's beautiful home in PB, with one of her rescue rabbits.
A colorful room at the Kip's Bay Showhouse in West Palm Beach.

someone who comes down every year in season, books wayyyy ahead of time-- every night at a different restaurant to be sure of a reservation. We sort of winged it and, luckily, didn't have much trouble getting in. On our first morning there, we woke up to birdsong, which was like waking up from a dream. I haven’t heard nature in so long, it didn’t even seem real. There is

Wiith my beautiful friend, Playmate Cathy St. George, at Cafe Boulud.

nothing more life affirming that escaping Chicago’s winters to a warm climate and, for us, Florida is the answer. Just flying into the Palm Beach Airport and seeing the Everglades from above makes your heart sing. All those wetlands just teeming with life. And don’t get me started about seeing a palm

RTL Media Group's Dominik Maur at Cafe Boulud.

tree after trudging through ice, rain, sleet, cold and snow in the Windy City. If I sound like a geek, I accept the title with pride. I am a total geek about experiencing life to its fullest and, no matter how many times we visit, it just never gets old.

Chuck with sister Nancy Steinwald and Archie at Pizzeria al Fresco.

I’ve been coming to Florida since I was a little kid, both with my Mom and stepdad and with my Dad and stepmom. Both experiences completely different but both wildly fulfilling. I was hooked. As a matter of fact, on this recent trip, as Chuck and I were driving back to Palm Beach

This Sahara Resort tableau has been around forever--brought back great memories.

from Bal Harbor, I screeched to a halt when I saw the Sahara Resort with its tacky camel tableau still out front. The building is a tad run-down but the three camels and their drivers looked like they had been freshly painted. Someone has been taking great pride in this roadside attraction for well over 60 years and it made me smile from ear to ear.

Pelican Cafe with Maureen and Leslie
Pelican Cafe in West Palm Beach--great food and ambiance and (sometimes) live music.

Some days we took a walk to the beach, other days we window-shopped along Worth and into the charming vias. A friend mentioned that one of the things he liked about Palm Beach was that no one ever seemed to work. I agree—people are eating and drinking at any and all

Leslie Hindman with her Chicago Star in PB!

hours of the day and night. It was pure escapism and Chuck and I loved every minute. Being with our friend Leslie Hindman again was a real treat too. We are so grateful for her invitation to visit and jump at every opportunity. This time we cat-sat for her darling “kids” William and Laura, two of the coolest Bengal cats you’ll ever see. Their mom

William and Laura, Leslie Hindman's cute kids--Bengal cats.

took an exciting trip to Saudi Arabia while we tended to the house and pool. We bought two giant pool toys (which I’m sure she just loved) and lounged in the sun as often as we could. I still worked on Chicago Star, since our April issue was due. Out now and FANTASTIC! (Read it here!) I also planned Chicago Star's first birthday party, held on April 14 at Robert’s Pizza & Dough Co. (See

Mary Clare and Ken Moll
Such a nice surprise, running into Mary Clare and Ken Moll at Buccan.

pics below!) Anyway, it’s funny how days filled with sunshine can change your whole outlook on life. I wish everyone could have this opportunity. We left Chicago feeling

The patio is where the action is at Lola 41 in the White Elephant Hotel.

disgruntled, pale and a little hopeless with the crime, politics, weather and more being in such sorry shape and came back refreshed and ready to dive back into the deep end of the pool. I did miss the fabulous Chicago Chefs for Ukraine event at Navy Pier, sadly, but have a great recap below from Nina Mariano!

While we were away, that hot mess of a series, A&E's

Diana Peterson
Diana Peterson, beautiful former Playboy Bunny and fellow Hef/Playboy advocate.

"Secrets of Playboy" was playing out –all Hef and Playboy bashing from a handful of unhappy, bitter women desperately seeking another 15 minutes in the spotlight. The film’s director Alexandra Dean should be ashamed of herself too. I, along with 100s of other Bunnies and Playmates, am appalled and have signed

So lucky to have known him.

petitions which were collected by Cooper Hefner.  We’ve shared our side of the story anywhere and everywhere we could. (Including on the clips below). During our trip to PB, Dominik Maur, a journalist from RTL Media Group, came down to film me for a program that aired last week about my life with the organization. My friend, and fellow Playmate, Cathy St. George, lives in West Palm Beach so I invited her to join me for some loving convo about the man who “brought us to the party, Hugh Hefner. I was so happy sharing memories of our Playboy days and seeing her beautiful face again. The segment titled "Exclusive with Candace Collins Jordan" aired in Germany, Switzerland and Austria. (In German, watch here)

Love and thanks to all who welcomed us into their homes during our trip….you know who you are. Can’t wait to see you again soon! Have fun in paradise!



Event co-chairs Bobbi Panter (L) and Myra Reilly (R) with Jean Antoniou (SC president) and Greg Hyder.

The Service Club of Chicago brought back a much loved tradition, the Valentine's Day Tea! Back in the day, this idea was brilliantly brought to life by the

Debi Catenacci, Sherrill Bodine and Kristine Kinder.

much-loved man-about-town, Bunky Cushing who hosted the event every year, usually at the Ritz, and always benefiting the Howard Brown Health Clinic. Women (and some men) would clamor for the coveted invites to this well publicized event. The attire always insisted on red, with Bunky clad in his signature bow tie. I loved seeing the ladies there, all dressed up, and bubbling over with

Dr. Joyce Kenner, Carolyn Curry and Sheila Chalmers-Currin.

excitement. The event was always covered in every social magazine as well as this Blog. This year, The Service Club

Sally Jo Morris Pfaff, Sherree Schimmer and Lauren Lein Cavanaugh.

of Chicago firmly and deftly took the helm of this popular event and brought it back to life. Congrats to co-chairs Bobbi Panter, Myra Reilly and their dedicated committee for their hard work. The bright, airy Atrium at the Ritz was filled with excited guests, all wearing red, the color of the day. President Jean Antoniou welcomed all

Tina Weller and Sharyl Mackey.
Tina Weller and Sharyl Mackey.

by saying “Please know how much you are appreciated. On a cold February day, you put on your red, bought your tickets, and came out to support Service Club like you

Kathy Wolter Mondelli
Kathy Wolter Mondelli.

always do! Thank you”. A wonderful Raffle allowed ticket buyers to “choose their item” they wanted to win, and the lucky red tickets were selling fast and furious. Prizes ranged from a Ritz Spa certificate and a Fumee Claire candle basket, to a gorgeous necklace from Crown Jewelers in Naples and

Kristine Kinder  Alexandra Cuquoz  Kate Prange  Margaret Wenzel and Julia Jacobs.
Kristine Kinder, Alexandra Cuquoz, Kate Prange, Margaret Wenzel and Julia Jacobs.

a Kate Spade tote bag. Chocolates, love, and merriment abounded. John Reilly Photography graciously donated their services, so the cameras were clicking, the champagne was flowing, and guests celebrated old and new friendships. Guests were already talking about “next year”. Designed as a new event to fill the winter

Tina Gravel  Melissa Jakovich-Lagrange  Elyse Leavy.
Tina Gravel, Melissa Jakovich-Lagrange and Elyse Leavy.

months, the Valentine’s Day Tea was quite the success. This year’s event raised over $20,000. The nonprofit's mission is to assist, improve and expand upon nonprofit agency programs in the Opening image with caption--Service Club of Chicago's Valentine's TeaChicagoland area. Its grant recipients operate in the area of social service, cultural, educational, and civic fields and serve children, elderly, the abused and neglected individuals in our community. The Service Club of Chicago is an all-volunteer women's organization founded in 1890. Mark your calendars now for the SC's popular Spring Hat Luncheon, co-chaired by Sherry Lea Fox, Pat Maxwell and Dr. Stacie McClane, on May 16 (details here) and the exciting Day on the Terrace Fashion Show & Luncheon, co-chaired by Jean Antoniou, Sharyl Mackey and Tracey Tarantino DiBuono, on August 1 (details here).


Tom Serpento  Nancy Gianni (Gigi's Playhouse founder)  Reggie Smith (of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers).
Tom Serpento Nancy Gianni (Gigi's Playhouse founder) Reggie Smith (of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers).

GiGi's Playhouse, the first ever Down syndrome achievement center held its annual national “i have a voice” gala at the Renaissance Schaumburg Convention Center Hotel in Schaumburg. It raised a

2022 GiGis Franco Gianni and his sister GiGi Gianni
Franco Gianni with his sister GiGi Gianni, the nonprofit's namesake.

staggering $479,000 with 475 attendees. This high-energy, inclusive, black tie affair was co-hosted by the organization’s namesake, THE GiGi Gianni, a 19 year old with Down syndrome, and Model/Actress and leading disability awareness advocate Amanda Booth. Amanda has been featured on the cover of Vogue Magazine with Micah, her

2022 GiGis Jaimie Rios  her brother Robert Migliore  GiGi Gianni
Jaimie Rios, her brother Robert Migliore and GiGi Gianni.

son with Down syndrome. The “i have a voice” gala - the organization’s prestigious national fundraising event - benefits GiGi’s Playhouse Down Syndrome Achievement Centers – a  fast-growing  network of 60 playhouses and startups in the U.S. and Mexico, serving

2022-GiGis-Executive-Board-member-Tim-Boundy -his-wife-Kim -and-daughter-Alex-
GiGis Executive Board member Tim Boundy, his wife Kim and daughter Alex.

families in 81 countries. GiGi’s Playhouse provides purposeful and FREE programs that help people with Down syndrome learn, thrive,  and live their best lives, without putting an additional financial burden on families who benefit from its services. As they do every year, attendees received the “red carpet treatment” at this one-of-kind fundraiser, featuring live music from the Barrington School of Rock. Then during the dinner program, this year’s Gen G Award was

2022 GiGis Former NFL Sean Cattouse of the San Diego Chargers and Cristian Richardson
Former NFL Sean Cattouse of the San Diego Chargers and Cristian Richardson.

presented to Jaimie Rios of Accurate Personnel. The evening concluded as guests danced the night away to live music from the lively and talented band, 7th Heaven, and enjoyed a late-night pizza party! In addition to celebrating with Amanda Booth, guests rubbed elbows with former Chicago Bears wide receiver Wendell Davis, and Super Bowl Champion Anthony Hargrove, among many former NFL players. For more information about free programs, volunteerism, impact partnerships, events, and the many ways to support GiGi’s Playhouse families, please click here.


Cortney Hall, David Murga and friend.

After more than a two-year hiatus from hosting public events, 900 North Michigan Shops closed Women’s History Month with a luxe kickoff party to inaugurate Fleurs de Villes FEMMES - a five-day, immersive 33_PreviewParty_CHICAGO2022_BYVERONICAPHOTOGRAPHY_VP_1622experience that essentially transformed 900 Shops into equal parts art gallery and floral boutique. Some 275 guests attended the after-hours affair to celebrate the opening of the stunning exhibit featuring more than a dozen mannequins dressed in custom gowns made of thousands of fresh flowers. Each mannequin honored one of 21_PreviewParty_CHICAGO2022_BYVERONICAPHOTOGRAPHY_VP_1569the following luminaries: Betty White, Michelle Obama , Frida Kahlo, Malala Yousafzai, Maria Tallchief, Audrey Hepburn, Oprah Winfrey, Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis, Rita Moreno, Diana Ross, Empress Xiaozhuangwen, Bertha Palmer E7874011-5B8A-4E8A-A521-DC52ED5C7516 and Queen Anne. Florists competed for the following categories: Florist Favorite (Bloome, for Oprah Winfrey);  Most Realistic (Flowerchild, for Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis); Most Creative (Ki iHouse, for Bertha Palmer); Best in Show (Hedonia, for Empress Xiaozhuangwen). The judges panel was made up of, Courtney Hopkins, former president, The Costume Council; Patience Pickner, floral designer, Kennicott Brothers; Cortney Hall, co-host of Chicago Today and Rosie Clayton, 155_PreviewParty_CHICAGO2022_BYVERONICAPHOTOGRAPHY_VP_1970social media influencer. Guests were treated to an array of hors d'oeuvres from Aster Hall, and cocktails courtesy of the exhibit’s liquor sponsor, Hendrick’s Gin. In addition to the exhibit, guests were also the first to experience the garden setting of Le Jardin, where floral workshops took place throughout the run of the show, with décor provided by Kehoe Designs. The Costume Council provided photography and support for the installations honoring Maria Tallchief and Bertha Palmer.


Heather Owen, executive director One Tail at a Time.

One Tail at a Time brought back its Houndstooth Ball after hosting virtual galas during the pandemic. The 13th Houndstooth Ball welcomed nearly 600 of Chicago’s animal philanthropists, rescuers and their 657A1036furry friends for a fundraiser on March 12 at the Morgan Manufacturing building. The gala was held virtually the past two years because of the COVID-19 pandemic. All proceeds benefit the rescue, rehabilitation and adoption of dogs,

Emcee Fred, Kiss FM, with Heather Owen (R) and friend.

cats and rabbits in need. It will also support One Tail at a Time adopters and community outreach efforts, including its work to provide humane education and assistance for disadvantaged and low-income families. Attendees enjoyed a vegan dinner from Liberation Donuts while their dogs received their own special meals. The event is always a sellout and this year brought out supporters in force. A silent auction offered over 100 packages including a photo session with Becky Brown Photography, a custom tattoo of your dog and a rescue ride-along with Executive Director Heather Owen. VIP ticket holders enjoyed an extra hour of cocktails with vegan appetizers and a VIP bag full of goodies. The event was emceed by Fred of 103.5 KISS FM.


RIP dear Ken Price.

A longtime fixture in the Chicago community has passed. Ken Price, who spent decades as the public relations director for the Palmer House left us at age 82 after a long bout with cancer. His memorial in the Empire Room of the Palmer House was standing room only. He was beautifully eulogized by Dean Lane

Ken price
A Celebration of Life was held in the Empire Room of the Palmer House with an SRO crowd.

(Palmer House GM), Charles Hagopian Jr. (Director of External Affairs, Office of the Ill. Comptroller, Julie Stevens (Ken's niece), Lisa Cole (Director of Corporate Communications), J. Peter Lynn (former GM), Larry Horwitz (ED Historic Hotels of America) and Shelley MacArthur Farley, a longtime friend of Ken's who also sang a song from the Great American Songbook (Ken's favorite) with Rich Daniels and Dean Rolando (of the City Lights Orchestra). In lieu of flowers, Ken requested a tribute and memorial donation be made to PAWS Chicago. RIP dear Ken.


BESTThis year's Bear Necessities Pediatric Cancer Foundation's Bear Tie Bash is going to be SO much fun and SO COLORFUL!

Blue Plate Catering dessert.

Our theme is "Magic in Bloom" and just look at this dessert from Blue Plate Catering! 'Nuff said!  Come out and join us on Saturday, June 4, at this cool venue, Wintrust's Grand Banking Hall, 231 S. LaSalle, as we present Paul R. Iacono with the nonprofit's highest honor, the William J. Casey Hope Award.  I'm proud to return as co-chair with Nina Mariano and beautiful emcee Sylvia Perez.  (All details here)


Manolis Alpogianis accepting the award on behalf of his company, America's Dog & Burger.

Congrats to legendary restaurateur Manolis Alpogianis, his family and team on receiving Vienna Beef's highest honor,

It's a family affair! Manolis and his darling sons.

induction into the Vienna Hot Dog Hall of Fame! Manolis accepted the award at ADB's Navy Pier location with his two darling sons, one dressed as a hotdog! Not only do they have the BEST weiners in town, but the family and the company have always been a huge philanthropic presence in and around Chicago. (Check them out!) 


Honorees Kathy O'Malley Piccone and Dr. Ali Djalilian.

Eversight hosted a kick-off party at the fabulous Steak 48 this week honoring past and current gala honorees. We had a great IMG_2821turnout and a lot of fun promoting our upcoming "Circus of Dreams" event coming to the Peninsula Thursday, Sept. 22. This year's in-person party will honor Kathy O'Malley Piccone and Dr. Ali Djalilian. So dig out your favorite "circus" attire and join us! (Chicago Star is the proud media sponsor! All details here!)


Maureen and Marc medal of honorLove and congrats to everyone's favorite "sweeties", Maureen and IMG_4574 Marc Schulman of Eli's Cheesecake Company. They and their ECC team were honored by the Mayor last week with the Medal of Honor, not only for their iconic business but also for their endless contributions to community service. KUDOS! (Photo on right from Chicago Star's 1st birthday party--they supplied the awesome "slice"!)



Candace Jordan and Chicago Star team celebrating the paper's first birthday!
Elaine Hyde (Editor/Publisher), Nuria Mathog (Assistant Editor), me, Marc and Maureen Schulman, and Angela Gagnon (community contributor).

At the end of March, Chicago Star Media celebrated a milestone, its first birthday! Fans, friends and

New Chicago Star board member, Tracey Tarantino DiBuono, was presented with our first Star Award for her support.

advertisers turned out in force at Robert's Pizza & Dough Company to help us celebrate. The pizza party was a hit with fun photo props from Kehoe Designs, balloons, Eli's Cheesecake (it's not a party without Eli's!), cocktails and so much more! Editor/publisher Elaine Hyde, Assistant Editor Nuria Mathog

Nick Pullia, Dana Hokin Garvey and Borris Powell.

and me (Associate Publisher) delivered welcome toasts as we all sang happy birthday to this amazing paper that now has a reach of over 50,000. Seen on the scene were Rick Kogan and his Kate McMurrary, Andrew and Jon Landan, Sugar & Spice (Almira Yllana and Giovanna Krozel), Paul Iacono, Jennifer and Dr. Joaquin Brieva, Todd Hatoff and Frank Jeffrey, Dionne Williams, Borris Powell, Bethany Florek and Andy Kitick, Lauren Lein Cavanaugh, Michael Kutza, John Lanzendorf, Joey Hyde, Maureen and

Double the fun with the Landan Twins and Sugar & Spice!

Marc Schulman, Nick Pullia, Gail Spreen, Curt Rose and Maggie Baczkowski, Robert and Dana Garvey, Jerry Bern, Troy and Elizabeth Mairs, community contributors Angela Gagnon, Joe Luther and

Todd Hatoff, Dr. Joaquin Brieva, Jennifer Sutton Brieva, Paul Iacono and Frank Jeffery.

Susan Berkes, among others. New board member Tracey Tarantino DiBuono was presented with our first Star Award for her above-and-beyond support in promoting the paper! (Congrats TRACEY!) And now, here's an update on how our paper is doing: People are responding to our mission of only sharing positive, uplifting content. Besides the print edition, we can also be seen online, through subscriptions and in

MB Luxury's Maggie Baczkowski and Curt Rose.

nearly 400 high-rise residential buildings in the Streeterville, Loop/New Eastside, West Loop, South Loop, Gold Coast, River North and River West neighborhoods; grocery store and retail locations such as Mariano's, CVS, Bockwinkel's, Jewel-Osco, Sunset Foods and Potash;

Chuck Jordan, Angela Gagnon (community contributor), Michael Kutza (CSM board member).

newspaper boxes in the Loop and Magnificent Mile; and local businesses downtown, such as Gibsons Bar & Steakhouse, Urbanspace, Bravco, Tufano's and others. Recently, we've expanded into locations in Lake Forest, Winnetka, Glenview, Hinsdale, Highland Park and Northfield. (Past editions can be found here) (For advertising info, please contact me! We would love to have you! I hope you're a subscriber too! :-) 


A41ab894-b48e-ebc1-de99-e70d83cb22c8Maryville Academy will present "Light Up a Child's Life" on Wednesday, June 1, at Offshore (Navy Pier, 6-9 pm). This special evening, co-chaired by Beth and Curt Coolidge and Cece and Jack Hartman, will benefit The Maryville Crisis Nursery, an innovative program designed to help parents or guardians get through stressful times. They offer up to 72 hours, around the clock, child care for children ages birth to 7 years of age. Families facing medical emergencies, mental illness, homelessness, domestic violence or other crises often have nowhere to turn, but Maryville Crisis Nursery is there to help, free of charge and in a safe and loving environment. People can call their 24-hour Crisis Helpline at  (773) 205-3637. For more info, please click here AND please JOIN US on June 1!


Charisse Barnachea, Michelle Mekky, Madie Holland, Carleigh Rinefierd.

Chicago Lights, a leading youth and social services organization, raised $650,000 at its Gala of Hope recently. The annual event is a celebration in support of the organization’s programming, benefiting youth

Mike Rolfes, Stephanie and Nicholas VanDerSchie, Chicago Lights President of the Board of Directors. 

and adults throughout Chicagoland who continue to face many hardships during the ongoing pandemic, with the goal of building brighter futures for all Chicagoans. Funds raised at the Gala of Hope will support five outreach initiatives of Chicago Lights, including Tutoring and Summer Day, Dance

Pete Shannon (Gala of Hope Co-Chair and Board of Directors), Stacy Jackson (Chicago Lights Executive Director), Bill Patterson (Gala of Hope Co-Chair). 

Academy, the Urban Farm, and the Elam Davies Social Service Center — as well as the Replogle Center for

Ken Arlen Evolution Orchestra rocked the room with the fabulous Caitlin Simone on vocals.

Counseling and Well-Being. These successful, proven programs focus on areas including social services, education, the arts, mental health, and economic development for Chicagoans. After hosting the event virtually last year, the Gala of Hope returned to in-person programming with 330 guests on Friday, March 4 at the Ritz-Carlton Chicago. Co-chaired by Bill Patterson and Pete Shannon, founding members of Chicago Lights’ Associate Board in 2011, and managed by Chicago Lights’ Associate Director of Development Laura Woods, the premiere black-tie fundraising gala kicked off with a cocktail hour starting at 5:30 p.m., with celebrations and entertainment lasting until 11:30 p.m. (To learn more, click here!)


279147163_10227439551519540_7414814645720570658_nGiordano Dance Chicago's Legacy Ball will return even bigger and better on Thursday, June 2 to the Ravenswood Event Center! From the moment the night begins, the energy will be palpable! Experience the venue’s unique ambiance lined with vintage cars & oversized retro neon signs. The dance floor will be hot, food & drinks delicious and abundant, and GDC's beautiful and talented dancers will wow you with pop-up performances, plus so much more! A night not to be missed! The event will honor dance legend Homer Bryant! For tickets and more info, click here!


Illustration by Rosemary Fanti.

A Silver Lining Foundation's "Glitz & Glamour" is back and in-person on May 11! The seventh annual luncheon and fashion show, produced by ZZAZZ Productions, will again be held at The Peninsula Hotel showcasing the elegant jewels of A Marek Fine

With A. Marek Fine Jewelry's Barbara Bradford (event sponsor) and Dr. Sandy Goldberg (A Silver Lining Foundation founder).

Jewelry and featuring custom couture from celebrated Chicago fashion designers Contessa Bottega,Peach Carr, Ann Everett, Al Menotti, Mira Couture, Model Atelier, Elda de la Rosa and Sylwia. Lending their support as models will be local notables Susanna Homan,CEO, PAWS Chicago; Micah Materre, Anchor, WGN Evening News; Susanna Mendoza, Comptroller, State of Illinois; Whitney Reynolds, Host, The Whitney Reynolds Show; LeeAnn Trotter, Entertainment/Lifestyle Reporter, WMAQ – NBC 5; Roz Varon, Traffic Anchor, ABC 7 Chicago; Caylei Vogelzang, Founder, Cancer Wellness Magazine and moi! Chicago Star is the proud media sponsor! Event proceeds benefits the nonprofit's mission to provide respectful and equal access to cost-free breast health testing. (For tickets and more info, click here! _______________________________________________________________________

Dr. Joaquin Brieva, in need of a kidney. Blood type O.

As you may or may not know, a dear friend and much loved member of the Chicago community, Dr. Joaquin Brieva, is in need of a kidney. I know we all have many worthwhile causes and even friends who are also in need, but if there's space

Walk for Kidneys coming June 12.

(and interest) in your heart, please consider joining Joaquin and his beautiful, warrior wife Jennifer Sutton Brieva on Sunday, June 12 for the annual National Kidney Foundation of Illinois (NKFIL)Walk for Kidneys 2022”! It’s a short 3 mile walk along the lakefront from 10-11:30 am and includes family-friendly activities before and after. Be a part of #teamjoaquin and help them raise awareness, fund research and hopefully find our beloved Joaquin a donor match for a transplant! Below is a link to join the team. If you

Dr. Joaquin and Jennifer Brieva.

can’t join, please consider making a donation. Below is a link and info on how your donation is put to use. This is where your donation goes: $25 DONATION --Help off-set the cost for one person to attend a Living with

Dr. Joaquin Brieva with their cat Zoe.

Kidney Disease & Transplantation seminar full of valuable information and resources from experts; $85 DONATION--Provide one at-risk Illinois resident with a FREE Kidney Mobile Screening. They'll receive tests for diabetes, high blood pressure, and chronic kidney disease; $100 DONATION--Provides one week of education for a patient as part of the Take Charge: Chronic Disease Self-Management Program; $250 DONATION--Send five advocates to Springfield with the Kidney Advocacy Council to speak up for patient and donor rights; $1,000 DONATION--Makes it possible for families across Illinois to travel to our annual Kids with Kidney Disease & Transplantation program. (To join, donate and for more info, click here)!


SFF22_IGThere is so much happening in Rosemont! Two of my favorite events are the "Spring Fun Fest" at Parkway Bank Park on May 14. Kids will lose themselves in a gaggle of free activities including balloon sculpting, bounce houses, face painting, petting zoo and live entertainment by Scribble Monsters. The park is home to 15 venues offering upscale international cuisine, live music, comedy, state-of-the-art film, bowling and Illinois Winemore. Free admission, Parkway Bank Park, 5501 Park Place, Rosemont, (847) 349-5009,

And, on June 4-5, enjoy ROSEMONT UNCORKED Wine Festival with over 18 wineries participating, live music and so much more! The Festival will also take place at the Parkway Bank Park with live music provided by the Real Pretenders, Michael Charles, Radium City Rebels, The Prissillas and Rosie and the Rivets! You won't want to miss it! (


The Mira Couture finale models pose on the elegant stairwell of The Odyssey.

Huge congrats to Ingalls Development Foundation on its recent "Promise of Hope" fashion show/fundraiser held at the Odyssey in Tinley Park. Expertly produced by ZZAZZ Productions (Tracey Tarantino DiBuono), the event wowed the sell-out crowd and raised funds for UChicago Ingalls Memorial, a nonprofit community hospital that has been providing healthcare services to the Chicago Southland community for over 80 years. (For more info, click here).





Maria Pappas, named Person of the Year by the Polish Daily News!

This and that! Congrats to Cook County Treasurer Maria Pappas who was recently awarded the Person of the Year

Centennial Wheel Navy Pier--4-22
So honored to be featured on THE WHEEL!

Award by Chicago's oldest Polish newspaper, the Polish Daily News. She accepted the award from Dziennik Zwiazkowy, the 2021 Person of the Year! Kudos Maria (still waiting for you to announce your run for Mayor!?)

And, a personal thanks to Navy Pier for putting my mug on the face of its iconic Centennial Wheel! The special event included other media personalities' images and celebrated the first mask-free day in the city.



Thank you so much for sticking with me! The world seems to be speeding up now that

CSM May cover 2022
The May issue, coming soon! Jam packed with FUN from end to end!!

masking and Covid are seemingly behind us. I think we all want to reach out and grab life with all the gusto we can. I know I do. I feel like we've missed so much and have a lot to make up for. I will proudly continue to share all the news about this great city (and beyond), so, if not a subscriber, please sign up for my blog here and read Chicago Star's May issue here! See you SOON!

Love, as always,


P.S. And, just to leave you with a smile....:-)




December 19, 2022

December 5, 2022

December 30, 2021

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