I have no idea what was said to make Christina Hendricks and I laugh in this photo — my brain shut off the entire time I was next to her (approximately 1 minute and 45 seconds, but who’s counting?). Needless to say, I’m a huge “Mad Men” fan, so meeting Joan Harris at last night’s Magnificent Mile Shopping Fest Kickoff was surreal. And yes, she really is that gorgeous in person. Flawless skin, perfect hair — and completely warm and engaging.
Sporting her signature bold-framed glasses and surrounded by 400 of her most devoted supporters, BMO Harris Bank executive Justine Fedak was hard to miss Aug. 19 at the National Multiple Sclerosis Society Greater Illinois Chapter’s Women on the Move luncheon, held at the Ritz Carlton Chicago (160 E. Pearson).
It was a packed house at the River East Art Center (435 E. Illinois) Aug. 15, as 700 guests gathered to celebrate Step Up Women’s Network’s third annual Shine & Dine. Co-chairs Christina Manuel and Marcy Twete joined guests like ABC’s “Betrayal” star Chris Johnson to sample dishes from local restaurants Carnivale, RL and Quay.
The city of Evanston warmly welcomed a new addition to its community Aug. 15 at the grand opening of the Amli Evanston apartment homes. Guests kicked off the bash with a Champagne toast on the building’s rooftop terrace, then sipped drinks and snacked on appetizers courtesy of Koi and Oceanique while listening to the smooth sounds of the Jerry Tiberi Jazz Trio.
Chicago Cubs first baseman Anthony Rizzo stepped off the field and onto the philanthropic scene Aug. 14 for his inaugural Cook-Off for Cancer event at Café Brauer (2021 N. Stockton).
The Langham Hotel Chicago recently swung open the doors, making it the brand’s third U.S. location (330 N. Wabash), and Aug. 12, the luxury hotel welcomed 200 guests to celebrate the opening of its second-floor restaurant, Travelle. Attendees joined the hotel’s architect and grandson of Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, Dirk Lohan, Managing Director Bob Schofield and General Manager Joe Aguilera and snacked on savory Mediterranean-inspired bites by chef Tim Graham, including chickpea panisse with harissa aioli and smoked whitefish rillettes. Later, they enjoyed pastry chef Scott Green’s lime tamarind panna cotta with sour cherries and ginger tuile. Local band Lake Effect topped off the night by performing in Travelle’s lounge, which overlooks the Chicago River. Photos by Jack Edinger
Last August, I was having breakfast with Justine Fedak at East Bank Club when she told me she had quit drinking. She found herself having to explain to people she barely knew that her MS medication had restricted her ability to enjoy alcoholic beverages – thereby outing her as someone who has lived with Multiple Sclerosis for more than a decade. (As a long-distance runner and high-energy bank executive, her “invisible disability” was easy for her to hide.) “That’s a story,” I told her, asking her to write a Daily Splash column for the Sun-Times. An hour later, it arrived in my inbox.
Grammy-winning artist Sheryl Crow rocked the house at Macy’s Passport Presents Glamorama, held Aug. 9 at Harris Theater (205 E. Randolph). Nearly 2,000 guests attended the annual bash, which has raised more than $50 million to fight childhood illness, cancer and HIV/AIDS over the past 31 years. Macy’s VP Andrea Schwartz walked the red carpet with Chairman and CEO Terry Lundgren, who later introduced the runway show, packed with fall fashions from the likes of Jean Paul Gaultier, Maison Jules, Tommy Hilfiger and more. After the show, guests joined co-chair Candace Jordan, WMAQ-Channel 5’s Alicia Roman and Platinum Events’ Justin Jacobson for the rooftop after-party, where they sipped Patron-based cocktails. The event raised more than $250,000 for the Ronald McDonald House Charities of Chicagoland and Northwest Indiana. Photos by Sofia Spentzas
For 19 years, the Gene Siskel Film Center (164 N. State) has been hosting the Black Harvest Film Festival, a month-long movie series that celebrates the African diaspora. On Aug. 2, more than 200 guests joined board member Chaga Walton, event chair Ellen Sandor and the film center’s Executive Director, Jean de St. Aubin, to kick off the festival with Black Harvest Feast, a program of four short films produced by up-and-coming talent. NBC-Channel 5’s LeeAnn Trotter served as emcee and Deloris Jordan presented this year’s Deloris Jordan Award for Excellence in Community Leadership to installation artist and activist Theaster Gates, who works to revitalize inner city neighborhoods.