Join us for Evening in Bloom at the Chicago Flower & Garden Show, Friday, March 17, 2017. Our Charity Preview Benefit is reinventing itself as part of the 2017 Show theme “CHICAGO’S BLOOMING” – with new experiences aligning flowers, food and fashion.
An experience like no other… Upwards of 1,000 VIP attendees will behold the Midwest’s iconic Chicago Flower & Garden Show in all its grandeur the evening before it opens to the public. Guests will also be treated to extraordinary culinary presentations in collaboration with Pilot Light and the Illinois Restaurant Association Education Foundation and a special fashion show presentation of FLEUROTICA, with Honorary Chairs Mayor Rahm Emanuel and Ms. Amy Rule, in collaboration with the Garfield Park Conservatory Alliance.
Garfield Park Conservatory Alliance
The Garfield Park Conservatory is one of the largest and most stunning conservatories in the nation. Often referred to as “landscape art under glass,” the conservatory occupies approximately two acres inside, where thousands of plant species are on display throughout eight rooms in this magnificent facility. Travel through the conservatory and experience the lush flora and tropical temperatures taking you away from the hustle and bustle of Chicago. Don’t forget to visit the 12 acres of stunning outdoor gardens during the summer!
Although the Garfield Park Conservatory was first built in 1908, the Garfield Park Conservatory Alliance did not form until nearly a century later, in 1998, when a winter storm nearly shut the facility down. Formed by a group of people in the Garfield Park community, the Alliance is a non-profit organization that works closely with the Chicago Park District to provide educational programming, events and resources to Conservatory visitors.
The Garfield Park Conservatory Alliance changes lives through the power of nature. We inspire, educate and provoke exploration through innovative programs and experiences in one of the nation’s largest and finest historic conservatories.
Illinois Restaurant Association Educational Foundation
The mission of the Illinois Restaurant Association Educational Foundation is to build Illinois’ hospitality workforce through career exploration, workforce development programs and scholarships. The following key initiatives support our mission.
ProStart® provides over 4,000 students in over 60 Illinois high schools with the opportunity to learn about careers in the restaurant and foodservice industry through a two-year industry-driven curriculum. Students gain valuable culinary and management skills through classroom training and work based learning. Students who earn National ProStart® certification are eligible to earn a $2,500 scholarship and articulated college credits.
Since inception the IRA Educational Foundation has awarded more than $2 million in scholarships to Illinois residents seeking post-secondary education and careers in the foodservice/hospitality industry. In 2012, the IRA Educational Foundation awarded almost $130,000 in scholarships to 54 students attending 25 colleges and universities. Applications are available online in January at www.IllinoisRestaurants.org.
To obtain more information about the IRA Educational Foundation’s program initiatives please contact Kayla Hawkins at 312-380-4117 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Pilot Light began in 2010 when four Chicago chefs, Jason Hammel, Paul Kahan, Matthias Merges, and Justin Large, wanted to give back to their Chicago community by teaching students about food. They wanted students to learn about where food comes from, how it grows, and how their choices affect their bodies and the environment.
Our chefs and teachers partner in using food to support effective teaching and learning in the classroom that improves academic and health outcomes for students. Our mission is to provide all children with the knowledge, attitudes and skills they need to make healthier choices.
In Chicago, the rates of childhood overweight and obesity are nearly twice the national estimate – especially in low-income communities. At the same time, our schools are struggling to meet academic performance standards. Food education often takes a backseat.
The program fosters collaborations between chefs and teachers through professional development with the goals of integrating food education into the school curriculum and equipping teachers to harness food resources within their schools and communities to enhance classroom learning.
The Pilot Light Instructional Model is designed to inspire students to make healthier food choices. Chefs and educators work together to develop their own unique lessons that align to academic standards and our own Pilot Light Standards for food and nutrition education. The model engages students and guides them to make connections between the classroom, the home, and the community through the lens of food.
As the presenting sponsor of the Chicago Flower & Garden Show since 2014, Mariano’s has played a monumental role in the show’s success. Mariano’s is unlike any other store. Visit and see for yourself how it brings the freshest high-quality foods from just about everywhere in the world—be it kosher bagels from down the street, or mozzarella from Caserta, Italy—and create a welcoming neighborhood shopping environment. With more than 30 locations throughout the Chicagoland area and suburbs, Mariano’s wants every visitor to Shop well. Eat well. Live well.
Conservatory Rose Sponsor
Conservatory Lily Sponsors
Conservatory Azalea Sponsors
Conservatory Fern Sponsors
Perrine Knight & Mandy Gittler
East Bank Storage
Fifth Third Bank
Conservatory Palm Sponsors
Nora Daley Conroy
Paul Levy & Mia Park
Special Thank You To