Archive for September, 2007

Real Men Wear Pink

Marcus Riley, NBC5 Street Team (video)

If you would have told me at the beginning of the season that I would attend a game at Wrigley Field in a pink Cubs shirt, I would have called you a liar.

But there I was last weekend watching the Cub versus the Pirates dressed pretty in pink. But I wasn’t the only male in the crowd rockin’ the pink. It was all part of National City Bank’s efforts to honor breast cancer survivors.

Several weeks ago, I nominated Dr. Sandy Goldberg to be recognized as one of 20 breast cancer survivors at Wrigley Field. Dr. Sandy has been cancer-free for the past 7 years. Along with her segments on NBC5 News on weekend mornings, Dr. Sandy and I also do a weekly health podcast, and besides being colleagues and South Loop neighbors, she’s become family to me. Ryne Sandberg, Dr. Sandy Goldberg, Marcus RileyIt was hard to express it all in the 50 words or less that the nomination form called for. Along with being a survivor, Dr. Sandy has also started A Silver Lining Foundation, an organization dedicated to spreading breast cancer awareness, and more importantly, providing free mammograms.

Images: Breast Cancer Survivors Honored

Last week we headed to Wrigley Field, along with her husband Greg, and had brunch before the game with the other 19 survivors, the people who nominated them, and none other than Hall of Fame Cubs second baseman Ryne Sandberg! Of the 20 survivors, eight were chosen to stand at one of the positions on the field before the game, and Dr. Sandy drew second base! There she was, hamming it up on the field with Mark DeRosa before the Cubs put a whuppin’ on the Pirates. It’s a day I’ll never forget.

So this October when you start hearing about Breast Cancer Awareness month, don’t just let it go in one ear and out the other. It’s a disease that touches all of us, and there’s a long way to go in the fight to eradicate and treat it.

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Green Ties For All!

Marcus Riley, NBC5 Street Team (video)

For the past year I’ve been keeping my eyes open for a green bowtie-vest combination, knowing that I’d need it for the annual Green Tie Ball. But despite the advanced warning, there I was days before the event, scouring the Magnificent Mile looking for the proper accessories (I refuse to rent anything!) At the last minute, I found a cool — and cheap — vest/tie combinaton at a south suburban shopping mall. It was one of those places where you can also buy bright orange suits, shoes and a hat to match. Who knew!

Images: Green Tie Ball

Fresh, dressed like a million bucks, I put on the Bally shoes and the fly green socks and headed toward Northerly Island. The Green Tie Ball has elevated itself to the one of the “must-attend” soiree’s on the city’s annual social calendar, and this year was no exception.

“The Garden of Good or Evil” lived up to his billing. Guests were given a halo or horns to wear — depending on their mood, or intent — and I’m pretty sure I saw more horns spread throughout the Northerly Island grounds.

Gateway Green’s annual fundraising event supports the non-profit organization, which is dedicated to the beautification of the city — and the beautification of the people, judging by this crowd!

Take a look at the video evidence in this Nude Hippo piece below. I’m off to find a seersucker suit for next year’s Kentucky Derby!

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Sarah Vargo, NBC5 Street Team (Video)

On Friday, September 14th, I had the pleasure of hosting the Reality TV for Charity party at A New Leaf. I am on the Board of Directors for Active Chicago – the charity hosting the event. Active Chicago was founded by Survivor: Fiji contestant Mookie Lee. I have known Mookie for over seven years…we met in college when our respective fraternity and sorority had football block at the University of Illinois. After gaining notoriety on Survivor, I was happy to learn he was starting a charity and using his exposure in a positive way. I was honored when he asked me if I would help him start a charity to sponsor underprivileged children to fund their extra-curricular activities. Other board members who made this event happen are Tom Raleigh, Marissa Pallan, Troy Chafin, and Hadi Saeid.

Images: Reality For Charity

In order to raise awareness of our charity and cause, we decided to throw several promotional bashes throughout the summer. Our big event, however, was on Friday, September 14th at A New Leaf. We had several reality stars come to support our charity: Alex Angarita and Edgardo Rivera from Survivor: Fiji, Sarah Blank from Big Brother, Nadia Underwood from Beauty and the Geek, Matt Lorenz from Bravo’s Top Design, Becky Lee from Survivor: Cook Island and Aimee Trottier and Michael Laungani from The Apprentice.

Active Chicago partnered with The Parkways on this event and was also honored to have sponsorship from the following: XA, 24/7 Chicago, Snow Queen Vodka, Miller Lite, Capmark, Smartwater, Vitamin Energy, Pink Yellowtail and Phil Stefani Restaurants.

One of my favorite boys DJ Rock City got the crowd dancing with his funky beats and Dance 2 XS performed two amazing dance numbers! This troupe is actually going to tour with Justin Timberlake so you can only imagine how good they are!

We set up the party so the guests would feel like they were on their own reality show. 24/7 Chicago, a new, hip entertainment television show, filmed confessionals upstairs that mimicked the popular tactic seen on the king of all reality shows, MTV’s The Real World. Exhibit, an amazing Lincoln Park boutique also provided gift bags after guests confessed their deep secrets to the camera. With all the cameras flashing, it was hard not to feel like a star or in the middle of a new season of a reality show.

Guests had a blast confessing their secrets of the city and maybe some funny things that happened to them at the party. It was wonderful to get together all the reality stars to do something positive for children. Stay tuned for some more cool events from Active Chicago. We’re just getting this started! Please check out www.activechicago.org for updates!

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Art “Chat Daddy” Sims, NBC5 Street Team

Don’t Judge a Book by It’s Cover…An Intimate Chat with former Porn Star Heather Hunter

I hope you will join me this coming Saturday, September 29, as I host an up close and personal conversation and book signing with former porn star, Heather Hunter. This must attend event is being hosted in conjunction with Afrocentric Bookstore at the All New Spoken Word Cafe, 4655 South King Drive. Doors open at 9pm and the revealing chat will begin at 10pm sharp. Following the chat, there will be a birthday celebration for Heather featuring a delectable blend of beats provided by Chicago’s very own, DJ Chuck Dog.

Hailed as this generation’s most revered sexual icon, Heather Hunter, AKA Double H, was one of the world’s most famous adult film stars. This event is to promote her new novel INSATIABLE, which is inspired by Hunter’s own life and career. INSATIABLE is a highly sexual and tantalizing tale of one woman’s rise to fame in the adult film industry but Hunter has now imbarked on another phase of her career as a rapper and author.

Hunter has performed in hundreds of music videos with many of the world’s most famous multi-platinum music artists, thus, making her a permanent fixture in hip-hop culture. Hunter has really proven herself over the years because she is the first African-American porn actress to cross racial barriers into mainstream recognition, and has appeared in all forms of media: Television, Film, Music Video, Radio and Magazines. Hunter has been featured on HBO, BET, VH1, and USA Networks. Heather hosted the top rated BET Pay-Per-View show, “THE PEEP SHOW”. It was the top revenue maker for BET’s PPV channel. Hunter also has a role in the upcoming fall release of “AMERICAN GANGSTER” starring actors, Denzel Washington and Russell Crowe.

INSATIABLE will be available for purchase at the event for only $20. Each chapter of the book begins with stunning full page photos of Heather, which makes this book a collector’s item. Only books purchased from Afrocentric will be autographed. No exceptions. Yes! You are welcome to bring your cameras!

Come out and enjoy a premium cash bar, valet parking, and intriguing conversation. Admission is only $10 per person, $15 per couple! You must be 21 years or older to attend.

I encourage you to come hear Heather’s moving story of exposing herself for the world to see. While at the same time, keeping her eye on the prize of succeeding and changing her life through it all.

Early arrival is strongly suggested. Hope to see you there!

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Erik SorensenErik Sorensen (Video)

Twenty-three-year-old Australian singer/songwriter, Missy Higgins will be performing at Martyrs, in Lincoln Park on October 7th as part of her U.S. Tour for her new record, “On A Clear Night“. …And for someone that’s from “the land down under,” she does just fine at being on top.

If you haven’t heard of her, the best thing you might do today is visit MissyHiggins.com, where you can listen to all of her newest album. Chances to see an artist like this, at an intimate venue like Martyrs, are rare. Especially when Australian fans would die to be able to see her without the aid of binoculars.

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

Shortly after Releasing her first album, “The Sound Of White,” in 2005 with Warner Bros. and winning the “Artist Of The Year” award in Australia, she skyrocketed to fame in her native country, and it’s only a matter of time until word spreads to the U.S..

Shuffling back and forth between piano and guitar, she captivates her audiences with a gimmick free performance and incredibly modest personality. Rarely do you see a performance that goes above and beyond the studio recording and reminds you why you buy tickets to see musicians perform live.

No need for wardrobe malfunctions, help from Chris Angel or giant boas to entertain,here. This is the real deal.

Missy is a can’t-miss.

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Laura Lodewyck, NBC5 Street Team

I’m Laura in the NUDE HIPPO Newsroom with these top stories!

Want to impress your friends and scare your neighbors (yes, YOU, crazy naked couple in the window across the street.) Bet you haven’t tried the Afro-Brazilian martial art combining dance, fighting, gymnastics and live instruments. No, I’m not making this up. It’s called Capoeira, and classes are held at Gingarte Capoeira on Milwaukee Ave. If you’re not all that confident about your fighting/gymnastic skills, you can always try some belly dancing at Sweet Magic Studio or the ever-intriguing cardio striptease at All About Dance.

Feeling subversive? Celebrate The 26th Annual Banned Books Week (well, maybe “celebrate” isn’t quite the right sentiment, but you get it) by attending the Banned Books Read Out at Pioneer Plaza, free from 1-4pm. Then load up on hilariously inappropriate greeting cards from Chicago designers’ newly-launched Naughty Betty line at Paper Boy on Belmont & Southport. (And to think that I was just lamenting that Hallmark doesn’t make an “I’m sorry your house is sinking into the ground and it will cost you $8,000” card…) Maybe I still won’t find one quite that specialized, but Naughty Betty does have cards for both breakups and “Chrismukkah”.

Continuing north on your provocative journey, check out Next Theatre’s Chicago area premiere of The Busy World is Hushed, a drama about an Episcopal minister who hires a gay academic to ghostwrite her controversial book on the Gnostic Gospels, but instead must face the questions that arise when the academic and her son fall in love.

For the obscure: The Emergency Chicagoland Commodore Convention happens Saturday at the Fairfield Inn and Suites in Lombard. In case you’re wondering, the Commodore 64 is (according to Wikipedia), “the best-selling single personal computer model of all time.” Probably because it was the one of the only ones that existed then, but whatever. Who am I to spoil the hardware and hacking fun.

If you think I’m crazy and you just want to drink beer at an Oktoberfest (the two are certainly not mutually exclusive), there’s always LakeView Neighbor’s Oktoberfest, the Lincoln Park Fall Festival, and the St. Alphonsus Sixth Annual Oktoberfest. So there.

E-mail me at NudeHippo@nbc5.com and let me know about any upcoming events and be sure to watch some of the fun locations and events that NUDE HIPPO has covered at NBC5.com/nudehippo

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Maureen Vana, NBC5 Street Team

A loyal hoard of fans gathered at the Metro for a night of dueling guitar solos, 8 minute long songs, and enough headbanging to start a tidal wave. Power metal was the theme and powerful they were as Sonata Arctica hosted Friday night’s concert with support from The Agonist and Cellador.

Those who made it out for the 6pm start were treated to Omaha, Nebraska’s Cellador who have been building a strong Chicago following over the past year and a half. The band played a 30 minute opening set which included tracks “Leaving it All Behind”, “A Sign Far Beyond”, and “No Chances Lost”. If you missed them this time around be sure to catch them when they return with King Diamond in early ’08.

See Photos From Sonata Arctica, The Agonist, and Cellador

The Agonist provided something a little harder in the middle of the power sandwich to add a nice variety to the night. Singer Alissa White-Gluz combined harsh growling vocals with melodic harmonies which showed off her impressive vocal range. The group sliced through the stage whipping guitars and hair around as though they were deadly weapons. The heavy crunchy sound mixed with high pitch solos is a winning combination that has earned them a slot with Century Media Records and a video debut on MTV’s Headbangers ball that was slated for the following night.

The Metro was instantly turned into an amphitheatre when Finnish rockers Sonata Arctica struck their first chords. The sound was crisp and clear from side of stage all the way to the top of the balcony making it seem like the venue had doubled in size. The audience sang every word to every song and took the lead when singer Tony Kakko would turn the mic to them. The set seemed carefully planned to build excitement with triumphant choruses and heartfelt ballads. Sonata played for almost an hour and a half covering material from their 1999 release “Ecliptica” all the way through this year’s album on Nuclear Blast Records titled “Unia”. The set list included tracks “Caleb”, “My Land”, “Full Moon”, “Victoria’s Secret” and “Don’t Say A Word” .

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