Street Smart Chicago

Bear Barren: Scoping out the Bears at Adam Archuleta’s birthday party

Essays & Commentary, River North, Sports No Comments »

It certainly feels like a typical night at Y Bar on Ontario—young, clean-shaven twentysomethings gyrate their asses, throw napkins into the air, dance around gleaming bottles of Grey Goose. The partiers flirt aimlessly, armed with every kind of drink the bar has to offer, most of them unaware that the club is concealing a secret, and there’s only one clue: orange and navy-blue balloons filled with helium stacked across the ceiling. Little do the clubbers know that they are minutes away from being in the midst of a surprise 30th birthday party (one that was well publicized online) for the Chicago Bears’ strong safety, Adam Archuleta, organized by his Playboy Playmate girlfriend Jennifer Walcott.
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411 Seven Days in Chicago: Frame Games

Pride, Sports No Comments »

Chicago’s 2006 Gay Games may have happened over a year ago, but that doesn’t mean people are done reflecting on the event’s success. A recently published photo book, “Gay Games VII: Where the World Meets,” documents the seven-day event, from the rainbow-colored opening at Soldier Field (the shot of 11,600 athletes waving their light-sticks is depicted prominently on the cover) to the closing ceremonies at Wrigley Field. “We had some amazing professionals working for us,” says Tracy Baim, who wrote the accompanying text for the book. “They weren’t told where to take specific shot angles or positions or anything like that.” After 60,000 pictures were submitted, a mere 1,000 were selected, a process that Baim says was based on providing a well-rounded view of what took place. “What are trying to do is provide a balance of the cultural and the athletic…to show what the Gay Games were about and what it meant to Chicago.”

Who are the 100 Most Famous Chicagoans? Inside the enigmatic culture of celebrity

Essays & Commentary, Media, News etc., Politics, Sports 1 Comment »

By Brian Hieggelke

I found myself among the reporters on the red carpet at Macy’s Glamorama party this fall, watching as a march of B- and C-listers chatted up the fashion and lifestyle press who’d lined up to collect quippage for transmission to their audiences, while waiting for the night’s sole A-lister, the mega-wattage Beyonce Knowles, to make her last-minute arrival. At some point, I overheard someone exclaim in surprise, “Billy Dec is on the red carpet.”
By crossing the ropes to the other side of the red carpet, the nightclub impresario, “Bachelorette” employer and frequently photographed pal of David Schwimmer crossed the line, so to speak. I had the same reaction until I realized that, unlike many of those being paraded before us, I’d actually heard of him. The problem with Dec, it seems, is that he is one of ours—a Chicago celebrity.
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