Over the years, any corporate event planner can admit to spending countless hours researching the perfect venue or vendors for their gatherings. After attending or hosting hundreds of events, New York-based Daphne Hoppenot was no stranger to this research and was frustrated by its repetitive nature. However, it was planning her wedding in 2018 that pushed her to realize the lack of resources in the corporate events market compared to the wedding industry, and set out to see if other meetings and events professionals were struggling with the same problem.
The cows are tipping themselves over at Fair Oaks Farms after seeing how amazing the new Farmhouse Restaurant and Conference Center looks. Located just 90 minutes from Chicago in Fair Oaks, Indiana, it’s the nation’s first large-scale “Our Farm, to Your Plate, In Our House” dining concept with 18,000 square feet of space that can accommodate up to 280 guests for lunch and dinner every day in addition to brunch on weekends. About 80 percent of the menu includes ingredients raised on the farm itself or supplied by a few other local growers.
It’s a kegger at Wicker Park’s new gastropub Barley & Brass—and that means no waiting for your cocktail. Drinks like the refreshing Bitter Fizz are premade and served from a keg that keeps them fresh. It’s the vision of Mixologist Jan Henrichsen, who joins B&B after stints at Fat Rice and Evanston’s Found Kitchen + Social House. Of this citrus specialty, she says, “If this drink was a band, every note would be in perfect harmony.” Of course you can make it to order, too.
Location: Illinois’ capital city sits along old Route 66 and, as such, continues to be a central extension of the Midwest, just a three-hour drive from Chicago and 90 minutes from St. Louis. It’s accessible by air (American, United and Allegiant offer flights) and rail with Amtrak service from multiple cities, making it an easy option to convene with attendees and clients.
“I always say that before I was really gay, I was really Jewish,” laughs Daniel Heller.
Concern Worldwide really took the meaning of Thanksgiving to heart at its annual gala, held just before the holiday last November. The nongovernmental, international humanitarian organization provides emergency response and advancement to many underdeveloped countries of the world with its latest missions including Haiti and South Sudan. The benefit was held at the Wit Hotel and aimed to raise funding for its various programs through ticket pricing, a raffle and live and silent auctions that offered gifts from WXRT, Jet Blue and a number of local sports teams.