planning

Ballparks & Stadiums are Always Game for One-of-a-Kind Experiences

It’s a cold and dreary Monday in the city, but Chicago Cubs Director of Ticket Sales Andy Blackburn sounds wide awake and full of pep when he gets on the phone. “The vibe at Wrigley Field just feels different this year,” he says with more enthusiasm than a Monday deserves.

Yes, a true blue Cubs fan.

Restaurant Weeks Give Planners New Ways to Sample Meals

Seven years ago, the City of Chicago kicked off what has become one of the biggest annual foodie celebrations in the country: Chicago Restaurant Week. The program, which was extended to two full weeks and this year was from January 30 to February 12, offers prix fixe lunches and dinners that have helped to put the city on the map as a culinary destination. It also benefits restaurants by giving them a much-needed boost during the slow, post-holiday period when people dine out less and McCormick Place hosts fewer conventions.

Peoria Keeps the Charm Coming

NOW A FAMOUS catchphrase that has come to define the thoughts and behaviors of the typical American citizen, “Will it play in Peoria?” had its beginnings in the vaudeville scene rampant in the central Illinois riverfront town in the ‘20s and ‘30s. As soon as a new act was ready for the stage, it was tested in a Peoria theater to gauge audience response. If it was not well received, it was either sent back for revisions or canceled altogether. If the vaudeville act played well, however, then it was believed to be destined for success.

Le Méridien Celebrated Opening of First Oakbrook Hotel

THE VACATED RENAISSANCE HOTEL had spent the past three years empty, abandoned and looking completely out of place within the thriving Oakbrook Center, a high-end shopping district located just west of Chicago. That is, until Paris-born hotel Le Méridien moved in.

New Venue Spotlights: Rebel Hospitality Takes on 3 Hotels

The newly rebranded Rebel Hospitality group is the spark behind three unique Chicago hotels in its portfolio. Formerly known as Neighborhood Development Corporation, Rebel Hospitality chose the new name to reflect the distinctive design and experience each property offers.

10 Reasons to Visit Grand Geneva Resort in Wisconsin

IF YOU HEADED SOUTH FOR THE WINTER, consider heading north for the spring and summer. Just across state lines in Wisconsin are the lush 1,300-acre grounds of the AAA Four-Diamond Grand Geneva Resort & Spa. It’s now easier than ever to get there with a new chartered helicopter service out of Schaumburg, but that’s just the beginning of what awaits. Fly or drive, here’s 10 reasons why you should get to know this all-season resort.

Keys to Achieving Trade Show Benefits

Q: I’m planning a trade show. How can I best partner with exhibitors to ensure we’re both successful?
A: First, understand that the person who completed the trade show agreement is not likely the person who will set up the display or staff the booth.

Identify and communicate with key players early to ensure they’re leveraging activation opportunities before, during and after the show. Following is an exhibitor success guide to serve your organization’s needs.

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