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Archive for November, 2009

by April Lawson

Let’s face it. The typical a la carte fashion show in the Windy city is really more club promotion/publicity stunt to get folks drinking at some of the most notable swanky digs.  The models aren’t real and the fashion is barely believable.  The only thing you can count on is the buzz from the alcohol. That is just what I expected Sunday night at Cubby Bear for the Bryan K. Osburn Collection of Holiday evening wear.  But I must say wholeheartedly that I was pleasantly shocked. What the audience got was high-end couture worn by professional runway models at the most surprising venue.

Brian K. Osburn & Models

Osburne presented evening gowns with clean classic lines and party dresses with bold distinctive prints. He is far from a neophyte, having studied with Vera Wang, and being featured in French Vogue.

Songstress, Diana Ross

This man of the ‘cloth’ has styled a roster of Hollywood divas including the Grand Dame Diana Ross, actress Lynne Whitfield and singer Natalie Cole. More than a rising star, Bryan K. Osburn is perched firmly atop the fashion food chain. Not half bad when you’re a block away from the beer guzzling bleachers of Wrigley Field.

Kim Kardashian look-alike, Model Annie Mendez in a bold flower print gown

Dream Team Stylists, Cindy, Sue, Lillian & Linda

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Glenn Murray, NBC5 Street Team




Before I can sit down and take one bite of Turkey, I’m thinking about New Year’s Eve? Yes, even before the first snow falls and I start cursing my decision to live in such a cold city, the number of invitations to New Year’s Eve Celebrations flooding my inbox has doubled from this time last year. There are already at least 20 different NYE celebrations in the city and suburbs that are advertising heavily to obtain your hard earned disposable income. So as a gift to you, I want to provide info on one of the more intriguing options.

The Westin Hotel (909 North Michigan Ave) will provide not only a great New Year’s Eve party with all the requisite amenities: Top Shelf Open Bar All Night, a variety of hors d’oeuvres, specialized martinis, champagne all night, chocolates, celebrity djs, midnight confetti storm and so much more.. not to mention 3 nights of celebration. Purchase a ticket to the celebration and get free admission to the pre party Dec. 30th at Enclave and the post party (if you have anything left to go out after 2 full party nights ) January 1st at Crobar. The party is the official New Year’s Celebration of KISS 103.5 tickets start at $125 with hotel rooms available for $169 per night. For more information visit

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Lindsay_small_2Lindsay Saewitz, NBC Chicago Street Team

It’s time to ditch the designer jeans and go vintage (i.e. grandma and grandpa era) for a day full of holiday drinking at GiveFoward’s 2nd Annual Ugly Sweater Pub Crawl!

This event brings together over 150 young professionals sporting the ugliest of ugly-wear, all for a good cause. Proceeds from the event will go to Streetwise, 2 Li’l Fishes, and The Night Ministry- three organizations working hard to prevent and aid Chicago’s homeless community.

Here’s the deets:
Date:
Saturday, December 5th
Start Time: 1:00 PM
Route: Starts at Redmond’s (3358 N. Sheffield) and continues south to Uncle Fatty’s hitting Sheffield’s, Trader Todd’s, and Mad River along with way
Cost: $15 online donation at www.uglysweaterpubcrawl.com gets you a wristband for $2-$3 drink specials; door tickets are $25

As if an excuse to dress up like fool and drink all day wasn’t enough, you can also win MONEY. That’s right- there’s $100 cash prize to the worst dressed (i.e. best dressed?) and door prizes for the first 100 at Redmond’s.

So get your sweatered-self to Redmond’s for a holly jolly time. Check out the Facebook page to find out more or RSVP.

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Eric Smith, NBC5 Street Team

On location at La Fonda Del Gusto in Wicker Park with Cesar Rolon.

Tell us about your background…how did you get to where you are?

My professional background started in Radio and TV where I worked as a PR Executive for radio stations covering a great portion of the Chicago market.  I also have served as Executive Director of the Little Village Chamber of Commerce-revitalizing it’s commercial business district and the Puerto Rican Chamber of  Commerce which ultimately led to me working to establish the Hispanic Woman’s Business Conference.

Cesar, Eric and James

What motivates you?

I absolutely love what I do.  I am a workaholic. I come from a family of 5  originally from Puerto Rico and history ignites my fire.  I feel a sense of obligation to payback and return the favor of those who came before me.

What inspired you to create Latino Fashion Week Chicago?

Years ago, while attending the parade of sculptures along Michigan Avenue produced by the Greater North Michigan Avenue Association, I discovered they didn’t have one figure created by a Latino.  Then visiting stores along the Mag Mile I asked if anyone carried a Latino designer to find there were none.  This became my motivation to create a platform for and to promote Latin fashion designers.  As a result,

Sonya Galaviz

I have helped launch the careers of several prominent Latino fashionistas including designers James De Colon and Sonya Galaviz and Sin Cosmetic’s Hernan Rivera.

What else have you done?

I created Chicago R.E.A.C.H.-Reaching Elderlies Across Chicagos Horizons-the only all inclusive adult care center for seniors 65 hrs and older.  The mission of the center is to serve those who are most devastated by life’s circumstances-we provide the necessities including covering medical prescriptions.

Currently, I am partnering with American Family Insurance and Ikea to create DreamRoomGiveaway-a 6month campaign accross 7 cities where the  5 most needy families in each city can apply to win $5000 in furniture for their own Dream Room.

So what’s next?

Runway Samba

2010 will be quite busy.  I’ve got Latino Fashion Week Chicago whose theme will be “The Passport”.  We are looking to establish Chicago’s first Cuban Music Festival.  And I’m contemplating a collaboration on the Festival Metropolatino on the grounds of Soldiers Field in July.

Looks like Mr. Colon will be quite busy in the new year-can’t wait to see what comes next so stay tuned!

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Glenn Murray, NBC5 Street Team



I don’t think it’s a stretch to call Aniba Hotep and the Sol Collective One of the best independent bands in the country. I mean all one has to do is take a listen to their mix of Jazz, Neo Soul and classic R & B . The tight arrangements , the out of this world horn sections and the ability to shift from smooth soul ensemble to rockin “jam” band in the blink of an eye.
At a recent performance they received comparisons to groups across every era of Soul Music (I’ve heard the Emotions, Badu, Kindred, Earth Wind and Fire) . It’s difficult to define a band with such vibrant personality, so why try? Rest assured that a performance from this band just keeps you wanting more.

The band returns to Hyde Park’s famous Checkerboard Lounge (5201 South Harper) for the second installment of its concert series “All Souled Out” this Saturday, doors open at 7PM, advance tickets are $20 ($25 at the door) Come see for yourself what all the fuss is about…

For tickets and more information visit www.anibahotep.com

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Glenn Murray, NBC5 Street Team




Art After Dark and its founder Derrick Lane have been hosting some very interesting events in the last few months. I had the chance to attend a great martini education and tasting event in September and this Saturday, they along with heritage link brands will host a very intriguing blindfolded wine tasting at Three Peas Art Lounge 75 E. 16th Street. The event is from 6-8 PM.
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Subtitled “Eyes Wide Shut” attendees learn to distinguish between 5 different wines in a special blind tasting. Extras for this event include catered appetizers, gift bags and prize giveaways.




Tickets are only $15 but are going fast! To purchase a ticket visit www.artafterdarkchicago.com

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Desiree, NBC Chicago Street Team

Come support Movember and Me! On Thursday, November 19th, from 8 pm – 2 am, Basil Leaf Café will host a Bachelor/Bachelorette Auction to raise money for the Movember Foundation. Donations raised will go toward the campaign’s two outstanding beneficiary partners, the Prostate Cancer Foundation and Lance Armstrong Foundation.

Like the beneficiaries, the auction block will include some of Chicago’s outstanding bachelor and bachelorettes, featuring moi. We’ll come complete with a “date package” for donors to bid on and the highest bidders will win a “date” which will commence that evening, in a VIP area at the venue.

Please come out to support the cause, as November is men’s health month (and to support me; I need some friends to ante up the bid so I don’t look stupid on the auction block).  Donations from the evening fund research to find treatments and cures for the Prostate Cancer Foundation and fund the LiveStrong Young Adult Alliance program, which aims to raise survival rates and life quality for young adults with cancer.

Additional event information:

Facebook Page

Hosts: Sean Tehrani, Jason Crites, and Chad Manuel.

This event is 21+ and casual cocktail attire is recommend!

The cost for the event is $20 and includes one raffle ticketappetizers, Van Gogh Vodka and Lucid Absinthe.

Event sponsored by Basil Leaf Cafe, Van Gogh Vodka, Lucid Absinthe and U.S.Foodservice.

Official after party at BullandBear, where all auction attendees receive a free drink.

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