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My Kind of Town…

We’re only a month away from the NFCA Annual Meeting in Chicago… so the question on everyone’s minds is “what do I need to pack?”  Other than the Community Service Activity and the Closing Reception/Dinner, the dress code for the entire meeting will be business casual—so feel free to pack those slacks, open-collared shirts, and sport coats, or the female equivalent of skirts, pants, sweater sets, and informal dresses.

Rat Pack Redux
Last year, fraternalists dug out their spurs and hats and sidled up to the Annual Meeting party in their Western finest to celebrate San Antonio! You all helped us create a wonderful night!

Don draper We wanted to keep the magic going … This year we invite you to join us in Peabody J. Smith’s Wayback Machine as we revisit the early 60s.  Have episodes of Mad Men made you long for those special years of Mamie Eisenhower’s pearls, bouffant hairdos and men’s flat tops under the control of Butch Wax?

Dresses Ladies: Do you remember the shirt-waisted dresses with the wide skirts? The boat-necked formals made out of bright shiny floral fabrics? Audrey Hepburn in the little black dress in Breakfast at Tiffany’s?

Guys:  How about all the skinniness that was going on?  Skinny ties, skinny lapels, narrow pants?  You had your choice of dress shirts, as long as they were white. Think of Sammy Davis on stage in Vegas with the Rat Pack.

Well, like they say, “Everything old is new again.  Check out this spread from last month in Vogue.

Our official guide is Tom Dreesen, local Chicago boy who hit it big with Ole Blue Eyes.  Frank Sinatra once told an audience, “if I’m a saloon singer, then Tom Dreesen is a saloon comedian.”  “By that,” he explained, “we’re both a couple of neighborhood guys.” For 13 years Tom opened for Sinatra, touring 45 cities annually. On May 20, 1998, he paid his final tribute to Mr. “S” by eulogizing him and serving as a pallbearer at his funeral in Beverly Hills. After Tom entertains us, we will dance the night away to the music that we all enjoyed on the Ed Sullivan show.

Pill box hats are not required.  But if you want to get into the fun of the evening, we invite you to go back into the furthest reaches of your closets to see if there is something there you can pull out and show us the fashion plate you were in 1962. Our photographer will be wandering our supper club, offering to capture your special moment for you.

Be there or be square!

We will continue the tradition started last year by kicking off the meeting with a community service event – demonstrating what fraternalists are by doing what we do best.  This year we will renovate two Chicagoland St. Vincent DePaul thrift stores. Don your work clothes and bring a little extra elbow grease because we’ll be demonstrating the fraternal difference by stripping and waxing floors, painting walls, assembling shelves, and pulling weeds for an organization that is dedicated to serving the needs of the less fortunate. Chicago is home not only to DePaul University, but to the society committed to carrying out its patron saint’s charitable mission. In one afternoon, our goal is to transform two local thrift stores into the pride of their neighborhoods by making them sparkle.  Buses leave at 12:15 p.m. – immediately following the Thursday opening session – and will return to the hotel by 5 p.m. so you can get ready for the Welcome Reception.

The 14th Running of the Chicago Half Marathon & 5K takes place on Sunday, September 12, 2010. The 13th Annual Chicago Half Marathon & 5K sold out at 20,000 participants. The Chicago Half is the fifth largest half marathon in the U.S. and the 21st largest road race in the country.

The NFCA has secured a discount for anyone wishing to take part in this event. Here is the discount code that can be used for either the half marathon distance or the 5k distance: NFCA5Click here to register.

It starts at 7:00 a.m., so runners might need to make arrangements for late check out.

The start and finish line of the Half Marathon and 5K will be in Jackson Park, just south of the Museum of Science and Industry at the intersection of Hayes & Richards. Jackson Park, once the site of the 1893 World Columbian Exposition, is over 600 acres and provides recreational opportunities for athletes, nature lovers and beach goers alike.  The Chicago Half Marathon gives you the chance to run on Lake Shore Drive! This scenic 13.1 mile course will start and finish in Jackson Park and showcase the south lakefront and the Jackson Park Golf Course. The Lake Shore Drive stretch offers beautiful views of the great Chicago Skyline.

For more information, visit www.chicagohalfmarathon.com.

Hope to see you in Chicago!

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