July 17, 2017 Dear Friends and Colleagues, Hello and Welcome to the sixth edition of Jane Network News. This month we celebrate tourism and we have some exciting news and updates for you. Enjoy this edition and happy reading!
Jump For Joy It's July! PARADES–PICNICS–PARTIES–FESTIVALS–FAIRS–FIREWORKS–COOK-OUTS–CAMPING!
The month of July meant TOURISM in Wisconsin and to promote tourism in Wisconsin that meant go to Illinois! I grew up in the heart of Baraboo, Wisconsin and in the late fifties and early sixties (1958 – 1965) the town was trying to promote some of their rich circus history. Baraboo was a sleepy railroad town until Charles August Ringling, born in Chicago in 1852, moved to town with his father August, who set up shop as a harness maker in 1875. Charles and his brothers Al, Alf T., August (Gus), Otto, John & Henry had a keen interest in the circus, staging backyard musical reviews and circus type-acts. On May 19, 1884, the Ringling Brothers staged their first tented circus in Baraboo just two blocks from the site of the world-renowned Al. Ringling Theatre.
From where my brothers, sisters and I sat on the steps of a large rambling home on the corners of Ash & Fifth streets, we were a hop, skip and jump from “downtown.” Tourists would pass our house all hours of the day asking directions to the Circus Museum. Most of the time we told them to keep on driving! That changed in 1959 when some City businessmen and women and merchants like my father, Tony, worked to improve the mindset of The State of Wisconsin legislators and officials. Today, the Circus World Museum operates on a year-round basis; is a haven for tourists from all over the world, and has been designated as a National Historic Landmark by the United States Department of the Interior and is accredited by The American Association of Museums. The State Historical Society of Wisconsin became involved in the process of preserving the history of the Circus Museum and the contributions of the Ringling family. The Circus World Museum, complete with live circus performances under a big top, musical calliope performances, the historical buildings, collections of artifacts, memorabilia and circus wagons bring the Ringling Brothers Barnum & Bailey Circus back to life on a daily basis.
Say the name Baraboo to most anyone and it is almost always associated with the circus. This past May 2017, the touring Ringling Brothers Barnum & Bailey Circus discontinued performances. The Circus World Museum, the 102 year-old and newly renovated Al Ringling Theatre and most of the Ringling homes and mansions are still in existence. The month of July brings renewed Circus Celebrations with a Circus Homecoming of RBBB family and a Big Top Parade planned for the weekend of Friday, Saturday & Sunday July 21, 22 & 23 in Baraboo. Step right up and get your tickets fast!! www.circusworldbaraboo.org, www.alringling.org
Summer in Baraboo also meant visiting and enjoying Devils Lake, a glacier made lake with breathtaking views, gorgeous bluffs and rocks. We spent our Sunday afternoons enjoying a family cook-out, and a swim in the lake. Tourists discovered the lake too and it was a favorite among campers who came to town for the weekend with tents. They must have gotten the tent idea from the Ringling’s. Devil’s Lake is a well-known State Park facility that also has been preserved for the next generations.
Oh Deer, What Are The Dells?
Wisconsin Dells, WI is about an 8-mile drive from Baraboo. Never wanting to be outdone by “The World’s Greatest Showmen”, Henry Hamilton Bennett and George Crandall fostered the popularity of Wisconsin Dells as a vacation destination. H.H. Bennett, a pioneer landscape photographer, captured the Dells as it stood in the late 1800’s. The beauty of the Dells would be forever preserved when Crandall, Bennett’s son-in-law, purchased as much of the riverbank property as he could and launched a conservation project to reforest cleared acres by planting 100,000 pine trees. In 1954, Crandall’s two daughters transferred the original properties to the Wisconsin Alumni Research Foundation (WARF) with a stipulation that it be preserved for all time.
This striking sandstone formation has long been known as the trademark of Wisconsin Dells. H.H. Bennett photographed his son, Ashley jumping the 5 ½ foot gap in 1886 with his early invention, an instantaneous shutter powered by a rubber band. This was one of the first “stop action” photos ever made. Photo ©H. H. Bennett Studio Foundation, Inc.
Touring the Wisconsin River and admiring the beautiful landscape and sandstone rock formations and cliffs among the pine trees, became a tourist attraction for many Illinoisans. Boat tours on the Upper and Lower Dells drew millions of visitors. Camping in the Dells became popular and many motels with swimming pools sprung up to attract vacationers.
The Eventors were hired by the Wisconsin Dells Convention & Visitor Bureau to create publicity and reach the main target market – CHICAGO. A two-hundred mile drive could start on a Friday evening and end with a return trip beginning at dusk on Sunday. Camping, Motel & Hotel overnights, touring river boats, and rides on an amphibious WWII tour boat called “Ducks” where popular activities that keep tourists flocking like birds! The area became known as “The Water Capital of the World” as major water slides, pools and floating inner tubes along a floating man-made river became popular. Over 2.5 million visitors annually visited the area. www. Dells.com
For several years we promoted the area in Chicago. For a time there was a Wisconsin Visitors Center on Michigan Avenue. We brought costumed characters from the Waterparks, Go-Karts, Story Book Gardens, Fort Dells, Wisconsin Deer Park, Mini-Golf Attractions and Museums to visit people on the city streets and encourage them to visit Wisconsin Dells. For one promotion we distributed promo cards with actual payment for their first toll. (Long before the I-pass, you needed real coins to make the trip).
An amphibious land and water “Duck” was brought to Michigan Avenue filled with costume characters from the attractions. Once the “duck” was transported to Chicago we promoted it with Q: “Where does a 6.5 ton Duck sit? A:Anywhere it wants!” Thanks to my friends and owners of Armitage Hardware, Dan & Kathy O’Donnell in Lincoln Park – we were able to park it in the back of their store! The Duck toured Michigan Ave, made a stop at WGN-Radio to load up an on-air reporter who broadcast his show from the Duck as we then took a group into Lake Michigan for some Chicago sightseeing. Lots of heads were turned and buzz was generated.
In the summer of 1988, the nation was plagued by drought and the State of Illinois was no exception. Members of the Wisconsin Dells Stand Rock Indian Ceremonial Dancers were engaged to perform their traditional rain dance staged in front of Chicago’s Historic Water Tower. The authentic troupe of native costumed dancers performed their traditional dance during a busy lunch hour and much to the delight of the crowds, and the parched Illinoisans, the Wisconsin Dells Tourism officials and to this publicist – IT RAINED!
Speaking Of Joy!
A few years ago I had the pleasure of meeting Joy Adams from Salute, Inc. My Columbia College Events & Promotion Students were with me at my post at mile 14 in the Bank of America Chicago Marathon. The two block stretch is called The Charity Mile and it is a mid-point in the race for participating charities to look for their runners and help them refresh and get some crowd support as they complete the journey.
Joy was representing her daughter Mary Beth Beiersdorf and her husband Will who started Salute, Inc. in 2003 shortly after 9/11. Will was a Naval Reservist and called to active duty for thirteen months. The severe financial impact his deployment had on his family came as a startling revelation. Lack of finances and dealing with raising her children alone, Mary Beth dealt with the fear of the unknown that caused emotional strain on the family. The couple decided to start an organization based around a Memorial Day Family Fun Run/Walk. A recognized 501© (3) that has provided over $2.9M in emergency financial assistance and assisted more than 2,270 military service members and their families in Illinois. Check out their website www.saluteinc.org.
Heddy Orozco Benedict Still Dazzlez!
When it comes to helping others, Heddy found herself drawn to making people smile and bringing awareness to important causes by 'clowning around'. Heddy exemplifies passion, energy, hard work and integrity. At age 17, she graduated high school and moved downtown where she began her career in marketing and 100% self financed her Columbia College Chicago education by 'clowning around' as Dazzlez the clown. Heddy became inspired in my events class where she was able to combine her clowning and marketing talents for the 2005 Jammin With Jane for PKD, Polycystic Kidney Foundation. My friend and the best announcer and voice of most all running races, Dave Kappas drew my attention to PKD. Heddy was part of WGN – TV’s Channel 9 “The Charity Minute” which promoted the event and raised over $5,000. www.pkdcure.org
Heddy has been trained and inspired by some of the best from Dale Carnegie to Ronald McDonald. She currently resides in Denver with her amazing husband and two children. She serves the Denver community as a Medical Sales and Marketing Representative for Corinthian Health Services. Five words you can count on from Heddy are love, integrity, commitment, passion and fun!
Jade Is A Gem!
Jade Coleman graduated from Columba College Chicago in 2004. In 2010, Jade obtained her Master's degree in Psychology from National Louis University. Her career over the last decade has included working as a behavioral health specialist, case manager and event planner but has transitioned into real estate property management working for Hales Property Management. Jade recently launched Jade's Gems, focusing on empowering, encouraging and boosting the self esteem of young girls through her personal growing pains and success strategies. Currently, Jade's Gems is gearing up to host their first annual 'Meant to be Loved Teen Empowerment Brunch' in late August! #GirlPower #GirlBoss #Sisterhood #BlackGirlsRock #BlackGirlMagic
I am a proud grandmother! Both of my Eventors associates gave birth this month! Rozana Audisho gave birth to Ishtar Athena on July 7, 2017 and Maggie Weiterman gave birth to Benjamin Alexander July 7, 2017.
Social Media Social Hour!
We're socializing and social media'ing at Kiki's Bistro on Monday, July 31 from 5:30 pm to 8:00 pm. Bring your smile and business cards for networking. Dinner and drink specials will be offered. RSVP to email@example.com or call 312.217.JANE (5263).
Kiki's Bistro 900 N. Franklin Street Chicago, IL 60610 312.335.5454 www.kikisbistro.com
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