Adrienne Irmer, NBC Chicago Street Team
Actually, my birthday was last weekend, August 15th, but I was waiting on some pictures from the event photographer to include. As you can well tell, it was quite an affair, but believe me the planning involved would not have been so easy if it weren’t for the venue’s staff and event promoters that evening. If you have ever tried to plan a birthday, bachelorette or new promotion party at a night club, it’s not as easy as one thinks. The considerations that come into play are numerous, and the pricing, well, in a recession, is quite important.
After scouring the South Loop for a pre-existing, club-like party with moderately priced bottles of my favorite (Ketel One) and seating befitting a princess, I found Exposure, jointly known as Utopia, located at 1315 S. Wabash Avenue. On further investigation of the menu and venue, I was certainly drawn to the mood lighting, plush seating in my would-be [VIP] party area and the newly refurbished menu with Island cuisine—formerly this was a tapas restaurant. And whilst I am a huge fan of Ketel One-induced karaoke, I could not muster the courage to celebrate, that ambitiously, on a Wednesday evening… I just couldn’t, BUT on Saturdays they rotate (and boast) DJs such as Vince Adams, Malik Shabazz, Mustafah Rocks and Jay Illa, just to name a few. So with the sound, ambiance and accommodations in order, it was time to get down to business—cost. Bottles of Ketel One ran $200 and Absolut ran $175, pricey, but not exorbitant. Other venues I perused were asking closer to $300 (and up) for Ketel One. The plus side, too, is that, like CostCo, ordering in bulk pays off.
Lastly, without friendly service and helpful promoters, your night could be a big ole mess with laps to and from the door querying list issues, untimely replenishing of the Ketel One and, worst of all, a disappointed birthday girl with the ability to produce a rancorous blog… luckily I am not the vengeful type (or wasn’t made to go there *wink*) and had a great time—witness accounts the next day and photo documentation are the proof in the pudding, folks. On working with the Black Alumni Network, Urban Upscale, InterTwine Chicago in conjunction with BYP Chicago and A-Squared Marketing, I must say that my first experience with planning an elaborate celebration was enjoyable and I highly recommend them, or using a promotions company of your choosing to help with the process, because counting RSVPs by yourself is not was I was looking forward to. For more information on Exposure/Utopia call (312)662-1082 as the site is under new construction or for FREE entry before 11:30pm on Saturdays visit: http://ourkindofpeople.rsvphub.com. Cheers!