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The Spring/Summer gala season in Chicago was a bit light compared to years past but that’s understandable seeing as most event centered functions are just getting back to how things were pre-Covid. We’ve surely missed seeing a packed calendar full of charity FUNdraisers and thankfully its back to back to back events all September. Once Labour day weekend wraps up, organizations like The Blackhawks Foundation, Adler Planeterium, Shedd Aquarium, Northwestern Women’s Board and more will welcome guests, donors, patrons and board members for a splendid night of fundraising and merrymaking. Some events are coming back after brief hiatus like the Gold Coast Fashion awards making a supercharged return to the fundraising scene with not one but two events. Let’s continue to keep the Wirtz family lifted and send positive vibes their way, as they host their first major event in Chicago since the sudden passing of the late Rocky Wirtz. Read on for our list of the most anticipated charity events to have on your social calendar in September.
Remember if you can’t attend the event, you can still support the organization that interests you with a donation or purchasing raffle tickets or bidding on a raffle item when available. Stay tuned for some of our fashion recommendations to wear to these events.
Adler Planetarium 2023 Celestial Bash
LOCATION: Adler Planetarium | 1300 S. DuSable Lake Shore Dr., Chicago
DATE | TIME: Saturday, September 9 | 7pm
CO-CHAIRS: Adler Board Of Trustees Chair: Kecia Steelman, Chief Operating Officer, Ulta Beauty
Join us for a night of exploration, discovery, and a whole lotta fun at this year’s Celestial Bash and help support the work that the Adler Planetarium is doing to break down the barriers that keep people out of scientific spaces. LEARN MORE.
The American Writers Museum: OnWord 2023
LOCATION: Four Season’s Hotel | 120 E. Delaware Place, Chicago
DATE | TIME: Monday, September 11 | 7pm
CO-CHAIRS: Joan E. Clifford, Roger Baskes, Donna Van Eekeren
The American Writers Museum annual benefit. Emmy and Peabody Award-winning filmmaker, literary scholar, journalist Henry Louis Gates Jr., the Alphonse Fletcher University Professor and Director of the Hutchins Center for African & African American Research at Harvard University, will be presented the Inspiring Writer Award. Dominique Raccah, publisher and CEO of Sourcebooks, a leading independent publisher is the Beyond The Page honoree. LEARN MORE.
Chicago Humanities Annual Benefit & Celebration 2023
LOCATION: Four Seasons Hotel | 120 E. Delaware Place, Chicago
DATE | TIME: Wednesday, September 13 | 5:30pm
CO-CHAIRS: Allegra E. Biery (Northern Trust), Charles Calloway Chapman & Cutler, LLP), Cheryl Harris (Allstate Insurance Company), Raymond and Judy McCaskey, Kirkland & Ellis LLP, Gabor Balassa, Latham & Watkins, Liz Stiffel,
Join us for the 2023 Annual Benefit as we celebrate the kickoff of our Fall Festival! The 2023 Chicago Humanities Gala will honor James Reynolds, Jr., Founder/CEO Loop Capital and James H. Lowry, Founder James H. Lowry & Associates and Boston Consulting Group. All proceeds from the evening will help ensure Chicago Humanities as Chicago’s home for critical civic and cultural conversations, enabling us to amplify new ideas and voices in ways only the arts and humanities are able to. LEARN MORE.
Chicago Architecture Center’s Designing Futures 2023
LOCATION: Convene Willis Tower | 233 S. Wacker Drive
DATE | TIME: Thursday, September 14 | 6:30pm
CO-CHAIRS: Lyric Opera Chicago
Please join us for a spectacular evening of celebration, honoring Carol Ross Barney. Proceeds from ‘Designing Future’ with benefit CAC’s design and education programs. LEARN MORE.
A Legacy ExPIERience
LOCATION: Navy Pier | 600 E. Grand Avenue
DATE | TIME: Thursday, September 14 | 7pm
Join us as we celebrate A Legacy ExPIERience
and the incredible leadership and distinctive collaboration that has brought
Navy Pier to this moment, with reflections of our continued evolution. 2023 Honorees are William J. Brodsky and Chicago Shakespeare Theater. LEARN MORE.
Gold Coast Fashion Awards
LOCATION: Peninsula Hotel (Sept. 18) | The Geraghty (Sept. 21)
DATE | TIME: Monday Sept. 18 (11:30am-1:30pm) | Thursday Sept. 21 (6pm-10pm)
Fashion and philanthropy merge as the Children’s Service Board presents its annual Gold Coast Fashion Show. Cutting-edge fashion will be showcased in two fast-paced, live runway shows at a luncheon on September 18 and at an evening cocktail reception on September 21. Event proceeds will support the Board’s two-year, $2 million commitment to the Pritzker Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Health at Lurie Children’s. The Children’s Service Board will host both Gold Coast Fashion Show events with the board’s long-time partner and exclusive retail sponsor Neiman Marcus Michigan Avenue. LEARN MORE.
1871 Momentum Awards
LOCATION: Adler Planeterium
DATE | TIME: Thursday, September 21 | 6pm
CO-CHAIRS: Lyric Opera Chicago
Join 1871’s 16th annual tech award show, 1871 Momentum Awards, honoring tech innovation and the best innovators across Chicagoland! Each year, they invite the community to self-nominate or nominate a company/individual doing great work in the tech community. LEARN MORE.
Lighting The Way: A Celebration of 125 Years
LOCATION: The Casino | Chicago
DATE | TIME: Friday, September 22 | 6:30pm-10:00pm
The Woman’s Board of Northwestern Memorial Hospital celebrates 125 years of incredible leading-edge philanthropic work for Northwestern Memorial Hospital during an evening featuring cocktails, hors d’oeuvres, and dancing to live music under a canopy of twinkling lights. Event proceeds benefit programs and critical patient care initiatives supported by The Woman’s Board including the most recent $4.6 million pledge to fund comprehensive reproductive care across a woman’s lifetime. LEARN MORE.
FLAIR: Fun. Fashion. Philanthropy
LOCATION: The Ritz Carlton Chicago | 160 E. Pearson Street
DATE | TIME: Friday, September 22 | 11am
CO-CHAIRS: Sheree Schimmer, Sherrill Bodine
& Sherry Lea Holson
Chicago Join us as we celebrate a decade on the runway by showcasing the season’s best fashion. We’re celebrating a decade of promoting access and inclusion through fashion! Since 2014, The Chicago Lighthouse has staged this inclusive fashion show, featuring models both with and without disabilities wearing the latest couture. Featuring a sit-down luncheon, cocktails, a silent auction and pop-up shopping experience before the event, proceeds will support The Chicago Lighthouse’s Children’s and Youth Programs that help young individuals with disabilities build confidence and become independent adults. . LEARN MORE.
Blackhawks Foundation 2023 Beyond The Ice Gala
LOCATION: 1901 W. Madison Street, Center Ice
DATE | TIME: Saturday, September 23 | 6pm
CO-CHAIRS: Don Barnes III (President, Belle Tire), Martin Cabrera (CEO and Founder, Cabrera Capital Markets), Les Coney (Executive Vice President, Office of the Chairman at Mesirow), Byron Trott (Chairman & Co-Chief Executive Officer, BDT & MSD Partners), Matt Zimmer (Global Head of Investment Banking, William Blair)
The Chicago Blackhawks and the Wirtz family kindly invite you to attend the second annual Chicago Blackhawks Foundation Gala “Beyond The Ice” presented by FanDuel. Proceeds from this fundraiser celebration will go towards: Investing in underserved youth’s education and small minority owned businesses on the West Side, Creating more inclusivity in the sport of hockey through our school and community programs, and Supporting Native American communities in the advancement of their education initiatives. LEARN MORE.
AfterSchool Matters 2023 Gala
LOCATION: Offshore at Navy Pier | 1000 East Grand Avenue Chicago
DATE | TIME: Thursday, September 28| 5:30pm-8:30pm
The After School Matters Annual Gala celebrates the incredible accomplishments of Chicago’s teens while raising important revenue to continue serving well-deserving teens throughout the city each year. Join us to celebrate the nearly 19,000 Chicago youth we empower, support, and grow alongside each year. You can expect incredible teen showcases, fabulous food and drinks, networking, and more. Cocktail attire. LEARN MORE.
17th Annual Big Shoulders Fund Ball
LOCATION: Wintrust Grand Banking Hall | 231 S. LaSalle Street
DATE | TIME: Friday, September 29 | 6pm-
Celebrate the work of our Next Generation Boards, that not only spread the word about Big Shoulders but get involved directly with our schools, by joining us at the 17th Annual Big Shoulders Fund Ball. Join us for an evening celebration to toast the efforts of our principals, teachers, staff, students, and families! Proceeds support scholarships that provide financial aid to some of the most deserving students across the Chicago region. With the help of the Next Generation Boards, these students are given the tools to study for a brighter future. LEARN MORE.
The Shedd Aquarium Great Lakes Gala
LOCATION: Shedd Aquarium | 1200 S. DuSable Lake Shore Drive, Chicago
DATE | TIME: Saturday, September 30 | 5:30pm-
CO-CHAIRS: Mrs. Mary S. Hamman and Mr. James T. Hamman, and Mrs. Gillian S. Stoettner and Mr. Robert E. Stoettner.
Shedd Aquarium is celebrating its annual Board of Trustees Gala. The signature black tie party for our blue planet will celebrate the leadership of Mr. And Mrs. Stephen Byron Smith. Funds raised will support Shedd’s mission to spark compassion, curiosity, and conservation for the aquatic animal world. Chicago’s philanthropic and business leaders will enjoy cocktails, dinner, entertainment and dancing. LEARN MORE.
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