Calling all literary and book lovers! Chicago Tribune’s annual Printers Row Lit Fest, the largest free outdoor literary event in the Midwest, drawing more than 125,000 book lovers and featuring over 250 authors and 150 booksellers, is approaching June 8 – 9! The event’s success relies on over 200 volunteers and we need your help!
This is Chicago’s biggest literary event of the year and a chance to get exposed to some of Chicago’s best literary figures. Help continue a Chicago literary tradition by signing up to volunteer today! Follow @PrintersRowFest for festival updates and become part of the conversation.
- Chicago Tribune’s Printers Row Team
Tags: Art Spiegelman, authors, cartoonist, celebrity chef, Chef Rick Bayless, chicago festivals, chicago tribune, Chicago Tribune’s annual Printers Row Lit Fest, Chicago’s biggest literary event, education, free outdoor literary event, Judy Blume, Lit Fest Volunteer, literary festivals, Midwest festivals, volunteers
My first patient encounter was not in medical school. It was during college, when I was required to play violin for hospitalized children as part of a course called “Music as Medicine.” I would play Disney songs on the pediatric unit every week. Many of the children were extremely ill and had been there for weeks. Throughout their day, they are told what is wrong, given medicines, and berated with tests. My visits served as a distraction from their ailments. My music provided them with familiarity that extended beyond hospital walls.
I will never forget the joy that children displayed as I played “Happy Birthday” or holiday tunes during special occasions. Some of them were without family members and felt forgotten. I felt honored and blessed that I could improve the quality of life for so many children who would otherwise have had yet another day of wishing and waiting.
While my occupation now is devoted to cure and palliation, I still advocate strongly for treating the human spirit. I urge you to take a look at a wonderful charity called “The Holiday Heroes Foundation” founded by two Chicagoan sisters who experienced long-term hospitalizations for cystic fibrosis. The charity recruits volunteers (some of them celebrities) to help hospitalized children celebrate otherwise forgotten birthdays or holidays with visits, activities, and gifts.
The foundation is hosting a fundraiser on June 29th that will feature celebrities, food, drinks, dancing, and several auctions! The Holiday Heroes Foundation wants you to come out and support their great mission to bring holiday celebrations and birthday parties to long-term hospitalized children and their families. Join more than 250 of Chicago’s most “networked” business leaders, generous sponsors, and sports celebrities– such asDesmond Clark, Fergie Jenkins, Revie Sorey and more– in support of the Holiday Heroes Foundation.
If you want to learn more or plan on attending- click here
Tags: activities, and gifts, celebrity, celine thum, charity, chicago, children, Cure, disney, happy birthday, Holiday hereos, hospital, Maimonides Medical Center, medicine, Music, palliation, quay, sick, sisters, two, visits, volunteers
I attended the 6th Annual Grand Slam Party at Rockit Bar & Grill last week and would love to tell you all about it…just in case you missed out. The Grand Slam party is an event that stems from the Bring Me Home campaign, which is an amazing union between the Chicago White Sox’s Paul Konerko and Gordon Beckham and Children’s Home + Aid, a foster organization in Chicago. The event was one of those unique experiences that, if you’re a White Sox fan, it’s something you definitely don’t want to miss in the future. Paul Konerko and Gordon Beckham took pictures with everyone who attended the event – including this lucky intern! They were beyond friendly and nice to the fans and definitely loved interacting with the kids. They had a silent auction with signed memorabilia from Konerko and Beckham, a special drawing to win 4 tickets to the August 20th game vs. the Yankees, as well a raffle to win signed hats and baseballs from Beckham and Konerko!
I was fortunate enough to talk with Children Home + Aid’s President and CEO, Nancy Ronquillo to learn more about the relationship between the White Sox and the organization. The idea to team up with a local kid’s charity came about 6 years ago when Paul Konerko and Jim Thome wanted to give back to the community, so they listened to various charities pitch their missions. Enter Children’s Home + Aid. They pitched their organization, which has been around for an impressive 129 years, and for Konerko it was an easy choice; his wife, Jen, was raised with foster siblings so the cause hit close to home. In 2009 when Thome was no longer with the team, Gordon Beckham stepped up to the plate to lend a helping hand. They’ve raised over $350,000 since the partnership began. Children’s Home + Aid has over 1,000 kids in its system and they’re always looking for foster families, mentors, and volunteers for various events.
The Grand Slam party really was a great event and having the star power of two of the most well-known baseball players in the city on hand definitely helped…not to mention an appearance by Governor Quinn, a big White Sox fan – trust me, listening to him talk baseball was kind of amusing, I never would have guessed our Governor knew so much about the team, nor was so passionate about them; I was quite impressed. The coolest thing I witnessed was the surprise live auction, which was for 4 Gold Coast Club tickets to an upcoming game as well as the opportunity to have your picture taken on the field with the players before the game; estimated value: $1,000. The bidding quickly rose to over $2,000 at which point Konerko grabbed the mic to offer a little more incentive to get the bidding going a little higher. At this point there were 4 people who were bidding against one another so Paulie asked them what it would take for them to get to $3,000. Everyone started shouting out suggestions: throw out the first pitch, meet AJ Pierszynski before the game (to which Konerko said, “trust me, it’s not that great”), get a tour of the clubhouse, meet Robin Ventura, Konerko asked what all of that would be worth to the bidders; one said he’d go to $3,500. The other 3 followed suit and said they would match that. Instead of creating more of a bidding war, Paulie asked a staffer from the Sox if it would be possible to do 4 separate days, they said yes, so all four bidders won in the end. Konerko also offered the bidders each a signed bat “for being good sports.” The live auction brought in an impressive $14,000 for Children’s Home + Aid. Impressive right? I’d say so!
Tags: 6th Annual Grand Slam Party, AJ Pierszynski, August 20th game vs. the Yankees, baseballs, bidding, Bring me home campaign, ceo, Chicago White Sox, Children's Home + Aid, clubhouse, foster, Gold Coast Club, Gordon Beckham, governor pat quinn, hats, Jen Konerko, jim thome, local charity, mentors, Nancy Ronquillo, organization, Paul Konerko, raffle, Robin Ventura, rockit bar & grill, signed memorabilia, volunteers
Watch out! This summer GIRLS really will run the world! On June 9th at 8:30 a.m., 13,000 participants, 3,000 spectators and 500 volunteers will come out to Soldier Field for the Girls on the Run 5k run and walk.
Girls on the Run is a non-profit prevention program that encourages preteen girls to develop confidence, character and healthy lifestyles through running. Girls on the Run-Chicago produces the largest girl-centered 5k races in the country- now there’s a whole lot of girl power! The 5k event is the culminating achievement for these girls who have participated in a 12-week after-school training program that takes place at more than 200 schools across Chicagoland. This program inspires girls to be joyful, healthy and confident using a curriculum which creatively integrates running. This year, more than 1,000 coaches will mentor these 7,000 girls.
I’m a volunteer coach at Dewey Elementary School in Evanston and I have to say that GOTR practice is the highlight of my week. The passion that these girls have come to show for the program, for representing their school, for each other, and for themselves is incredibly uplifting and gratifying. Each week we tackle issues stemming from the topics of body image, gossiping, confidence, community service and teamwork- then we get outside and run! The program includes girls of different ages and abilities, yet every runner walks away from practice feeling a sense of overwhelming accomplishment.
I can tell you, my runners can’t wait to show off everything they’ve learned- for them, the 5k event really is their chance to shine. So come out to Soldier Field and see what they’ve got! A pre-race rally that includes GOTR cheers, face painting and tiara decorating will take place as well as a finish line festival with great food, games and sponsor giveaways. American Girl Place will also be hosting a pre-5k dinner on Friday, June 8th at 7:30 p.m.
Race day registration opens at 6:30 a.m. and closes at 8:15 a.m.
Hopefully I’ll see you there!!
By: Lauren Neuschel
Tags: 5k, American Girl Place, billy dec, chicago, community service, Dewey Elementary School, District 65, Face painting, festival, food, Girls on the Run, Girls on the Run-Chicago, GOTR, healthy, mcdonalds, non-profit, participants, registration, run, Soldier Field, spectators, teamwork, volunteers, Walk, World