I love watching kids head back to school. Their little faces all tanned from playing outdoors all summer, their bright eyes and smiles as they run into friends they haven’t seen all summer. Hearing all of the excited chatter about their new teacher and who’s in their class gets me just as excited as they are!
Gina Lombardo and Ben Firestone met at a local real estate networking event in 2006. Five years after their first date, the duo got engaged and began planning their dream wedding — a task made easier because the couple had attended more than 60 weddings together, giving Lombardo a clear picture of how she wanted her own big day to unfold. With a guest list that quickly grew to 275, Lombardo and Firestone enlisted the help of wedding planner Reva Nathan and tied the knot June 29 at the Chicago Illuminating Company (19 E. 21st).
When Rebecca Budig traveled overseas to Bulgaria to film the thriller “Getaway” alongside Ethan Hawke and Selena Gomez, she found some unexpected action off set. “We had an earthquake one night!” the Midwest native says. “I was in my hotel room by myself, freaking out. The crew was distraught. They hadn’t had an earthquake like that in 100 years.” Luckily, no one was hurt, and shooting continued on the film, in theaters nationwide Aug. 30.
There are very few people whom Finesse Mitchell hasn’t lampooned. The actor and SNL alum has impersonated everyone from O.J. Simpson to R. Kelly, even famously sending up Venus Williams and Gayle King. Now, he’s returning to his roots as a standup comic, touring the country to crack jokes about Anthony Weiner, divorce, remarriage (he’s set to wed El DeBarge’s daughter, Adris, in September) and even life post-SNL. “It’s fun because I’m all over the place with politics and local stuff,” says the funnyman. “The shows have been packed. I love getting back to standup and doing what I do best.”
Back when University Village was called Little Italy, the space County Barbeque now occupies was home to Gennaro’s, a buzz-you-in, Italian red-sauce joint popular since the 1950s. “I definitely couldn’t even get into that place,” says Erick Williams, now partner, chef and pitmaster at County Barbeque.
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.