- Audio Sound Investment Ltd.
- Catering Food For Thought Chicago
- DJ Collaboraction
- Entertainment Classic Party Rentals
- Entertainment CORT Event Furnishings
- Entertainment Fig Media
- Event Consultation Julie Darling
- Event Consultation Revel Global Events
- Event Production Ivan Carlson
- Invitations Hannah Handmade
- Lighting Frost Chicago
- Photography Eric Craig Studios Inc.
- Security Nick Argentine & Associates Ltd.
- Spirits William Grant & Sons
- Wine Esterlina Vineyards & Winery
- Wine Everett Ridge Wineries
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CHICAGO BizBash gathered more than 600 event professionals to kick off the official launch of its Chicago market properties, including a bimonthly magazine, a Web site, and an upcoming trade show. Tina Carlson of Ivan Carlson & Associates worked with BizBash to create a multisensational environment at the River East Art Center on May 20.
Greeting guests were actors from Collaboraction, a theater-based artist collective in white costumes ringing bells and a reclining angel with feathered wings reading a copy of BizBash Chicago. Additional performers were dressed as event back-of-the-house workers, such as chefs, servers, and support staff, in all-white attire. Mini theatrical presentations of choreographed window cleaning set the tone for the originality of the evening.
According to attendees, the event was a powerful gathering of corporate and third-party planners who have a stake in showcasing Chicago as one of the premier event capitals of the world.
BizBash C.E.O. and founder David Adler greeted the crowd with the charge that BizBash is committed to covering Chicago not only for its citizens, but for the outside world as well. Chicago publisher Sue Babin and vice president of market development Mimi Rubin mentioned the warm welcome BizBash has received, and editor in chief Chad Kaydo spoke of the company’s commitment to high-quality editorial content.
The evening’s theme featured an all-white palette. White leather seating vignettes were provided by Cort Event Furnishings. Decor and floral design were handled by Ivan Carlson & Associates and included gorgeous floral arrangements of hydrangeas, parrot tulips, peonies, and lilacs, among many other flowers, on all of the tabletops. Also part of the decor were Tord Boontje tyvek curtains and Mylar Icarus feathered winged lamps suspended above the evening’s entertainment.
Taking center stage in the lower-level atrium was a structure constructed from steel truss work and covered in white fabric. A four-sided suspended wall of LCD panels was attached to the truss. Frost projected patterns and sponsor logos onto the panels and onto the facility’s water wall behind one of the buffet stations.
The guest registration tables were augmented by six models in color-coordinated tops to reflect the event invitation created by Hannah Handmade. Wrapped around the balcony as guests entered were highboy tables dressed in white linen provided by BBJ Linen.
The two-tiered venue allowed guests to enter various rooms and sections of rooms so that they were surprised at every corner.
A specialty BizBash “green” cocktail was created just for the event by William Grant & Sons, who provided all of the evening’s spirits. The drink was mixed with Iceland’s Reyka Vodka and acai berry juice, and garnished with a basil leaf. For wine drinkers, Esterlina & Everett Ridge wineries provided numerous selections from their cellars. Julie Darling of D|C Inc. secured the liquor sponsors and provided additional event production support to BizBash.
Food for Thought offered an eclectic menu of seasonal cuisine reflecting offerings from local organic growers. Each food station had inviting signage that added to the branding effect of the evening. Classic Party Rentals provided glassware, table appointments, and rentals, including one of their newest “Chameleon” chairs.
Carmel Music & Entertainment, Fig Media, and Katherine Hughes provided the evening’s musical entertainment. The ensemble performed a unique blend of world, Gypsy, Latin, Indian, Mediterranean, Afro-Cuban, jazz, and popular music with sound support from Sound Investment.
As the guests exited the festivities, they were captured on camera by Eric Craig Studios and supplied with gift bags containing BizBash Chicago’s first issue and the sponsors’ business cards. Event production company Revel Global Events provided additional event consultation and labor. Nick Argentine & Associates provided security.
Green elements were used whenever possible. The invitations were printed by a Forest Stewardship Council-certified printer on environmentally responsible paper made of 10 percent post-consumer waste. The recyclable and biodegradable gift bags were made from sustainable materials, and LED lighting contributed to lower energy use.
Watch the Chicago launch party video.
Thanks to all of our sponsors, attendees, and suppliers for making our first Chicago event an evening to remember!