Archive for category Eli’s Cheesecake Festival

It’s Eli’s Cheesecake Festival Time!

Eli’s Pastry Chef, Laurel Boger, kicked off the 10th Annual Eli’s Cheesecake Festival with a live demonstration at the NBC 5 Michigan Avenue Studio. Joining her in the demonstration of how to create an Eli’s Michigan Apple Smoosh, was the Michigan Apple Queen, Ashley Wright, Eli’s
President, Marc Schulman, anchor Rob Elgas of the NBC 5 Chicago Weekend News and weatherman, Pete Sack.

The Eli’s Cheesecake Festival is on all day at Eli’s Cheesecake World this Saturday and Sunday. Check out for further details.

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Greg Raposo To Appear at the 10th Annual Eli’s Cheesecake Festival

All of us at Eli’s Cheesecake are proud of our long partnership with Radio Disney and its now Regional Director, Karyn Eskyn. Radio Disney has had a presence at each of our annual Eli’s Cheesecake Festival’s and works with us throughout the year.

In November of 2003, we were delighted to partner with Radio Disney to host the Ultimate Meet N’ Greet at Eli’s Cheesecake World in
connection with the Jingle Jam Tour. Visiting our bakery for breakfast, a meet n’ greet and cake decorating with only 100 guests was performing artists Greg Raposo, Jesse McCartney and Stevie Brock.

Greg had such a great time that he returned to headline the Radio Disney Day on the Eli’s Main Stage at the Eli’s Cheesecake Festival in
2004. Last year, Radio Disney brough in Jump 5 for another top performance.

By popular demand, on Saturday, September 16th, Radio Disney will again feature a performance by Greg Raposo on the U.S. Cellular Main Stage at the Eli’s Cheesecake Festival. We look forward to you joining us on this day.


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Slice of Fun at Eli’s Cheesecake Festival featured in the Pioneer Press

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Portage Park Centerfor the Arts Recognized in the Tribune for its “Art of the Car” at the Eli’s Cheesecake Festival



Kids take ride on road to artistic

By Jon Anderson
Tribune staff reporter
Published September 20, 2005

Looking for new ways to define what interests them, modern artists have used everything from cannon balls to miles of string and cracked plates.

So, could a Dodge van be an appropriate vehicle for a creativebreakthrough?

“Sure,” Jennifer La Civita said Sunday, encouraging a flood of youngsters gathered in the sunshine to take brushes and paint in hand, then dab and swoosh and swirl away.

That they did, for six hours, covering an aging blue van with words, names, shapes, figures, flowing lines and flowers–in a rainbow of colors.

“It’s total expression. Anything goes,” observed La Civita, the director of the Portage Park Center for the Arts.

It is also, she added, art.

“The Art of the Car” was a highlight of the 9th Annual Eli’s Cheesecake Festival, a two-day neighborhood event held on the grounds of a cheesecake plant at 6701 W. Forest Preserve Drive, on the northwestern edge of the city.

It was a weekend filled with delights and diversions–Irish dancers, a jazz band, cooking demonstrations, a yo-yo expert, a Hula-Hoop contest, tumblers, dancers and free food.

But for the kids who paid $1 to enter the Paint-A-Car area, there was a kind of quiet, artistic intensity that comes from the discovery of new ways to look at an everyday object.

“Come on, get the windows,” said one, as he added a heavy-stroked, Gauguin-like sunset to the front windshield.

Nearby, Kyle Kranz, 4, reached up under a wheel rim to spread blue paint. In back, Emily Kazmierski, 7, splattered orange on a rear tire.

Others–encouraged to “go ahead, there are no rules”–colored in the license plates, customized the rear-view mirrors, drew all over the bumpers, decorated the wheel rims and crawled underneath the van to paint its tailpipe.

“We had a Caprice last year, but it got filled up way too fast,” said La Civita.

The car-painting raised some money for the Portage Park arts center. But the main point was to encourage young artists, part of the center’s mission of “celebrating the literary, visual and performing arts.” Opened in the summer of 2000, it is housed in the former Nebo Lutheran Church, at 5801 W. Dakin St.

The church closed in 1998, one of eight Northwest Side Lutheran churches that combined congregations after years of declining memberships.

Now, with classes in everything from drumming to quilting, the arts center “is like a big house that invites everyone to celebrate their inner being,” its current schedule reports. Though van painting might seem a bit random, there were important lessons to be learned, La Civita suggested.

Even in art, there are rules.

“Hey, guys! No!” cautioned one mother, as several young artists started splashing paint on each other’s arms.

Nor does all art endure.

“It’s only poster paint,” said the man who lent the van. “Tomorrow, I’ll use a high-pressure hose and blast it all off.”

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Eli’s Cheesecake Festival highlighted as a top culinary pick for the weekend by the Chicago Tribune and the Chicago Sun Times

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Eli’s Cheesecake extends a huge thank you to Goose Island Beer Company for supporting the 9th Annual Eli’s Cheesecake Festival

One of the great Chicago institutions is Goose Island Beer Company. John and Greg Hall, Brewmasters and owners of Goose Island and Wei Fraser, the Marketing Manager, are committed to quality, service and making a difference in Chicago. We are very grateful to them for sponsoring our Friday night benefit for New Horizons and for providing great Goose Island Beer throughout the weekend. With the World Festival on Saturday afternoon and the Classic Car Show on Sunday, among so many other events, we knew that Goose Island would be the perfect beverage to be showcasesed at the event.

Thank you Goose Island!

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Eli’s Cheesecake Delighted to Welcome the Michigan Apple Queen to the Eli’s Cheesecake Festival

We are delighted to welcome the Michigan Apple Commission back as sponsor of our Culinary Tent for the Eli’s Cheesecake Festival. Last year, the Michigan Apple was a great partner and we shared with them our dream to have the Michigan Apple Queen at the Festival.

Our dream came true as Paula Fisher of Berrien Springs, the Michigan Apple Queen for 2005, will be at the Eli’s Cheesecake Festival on Saturday greeting guests and sharing the great story of Michigan Apples.


From Left: First runner-up Emily Westendorp, 2005 Michigan
Apple Queen Paula Fisher, and second runner-up Ashley Wright on the Michigan
apple industry float designed by Janna Klein.
Michigan Apple Queen Looks to September
Michigan Apple Queen Paula Fisher of Berrien Springs was joined by first runner-up Emily Westendorp of Dowagiac, and second runner-up Ashley Wright of Belding at the National Coast Guard Festival in Grand Haven. The National Coast Guard Festival was one of many events that Fisher and her court attended throughout Michigan this summer.

Michigan Apple royalty were awarded “Best Overall Entry” at the National Coast Guard Festival for the Michigan apple industry float, which has been designed in a Fairy Tale theme by 2003 Michigan Apple Queen, Janna Klein.

Upcoming events for the Michigan Apple Queen include the Eli’s Cheesecake Festival in Chicago and various parades.

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Radio Disney Brings Jump5 to the Eli’s Cheesecake Festival

One of our longest time partners for the Eli’s Cheesecake Festival is Radio Disney. Each year, Radio Disney has partnered with us to bring great entertainment to Eli’s including Greg Raposo, Stevie Brock and Jessie McCartney.

This year Radio DIsney is bringing Jump5 to the Eli’s Cheesecake Festival on Sunday, September 18th.

We are delighted to welcome this high energy group with such a great message to the Eli’s Cheesecake Festival.

Jump5 Biography

Teenage icons are regular fixtures not only at the mall, but all over the airwaves and on both the big and small screens. They sing, they act and even write their own music or, in some cases, own their own companies. Teen People calls them “teen titans,” but you might know them as “generation next.”

Smack in the midst of it all is the energetic power-pop phenomenon Jump5.

In a mere five years since their official formation Jump5 —Brandon, Brittany, Chris and Lesley — has been building considerable momentum. These energetic teens choose to give ’tweens and teenagers what they want without sacrificing what they need — healthy, positive messages about being true to yourself, respecting and accepting others, and enjoying all life has to offer.

Jump5 – well-known as a magnetic, energetic foursome – knows how to do one thing extremely well; connect with their hundreds of thousands of fans around the world. And kids aren’t the only ones who appreciate Jump5’s inspirational messages, proving without question that this is music for the whole family. “It’s been awesome to watch them grow as singers, musicians, and performers through the years,” producer Mark Hammond says. “But much more profound has been watching them grow personally. Now more than ever I see a tremendous desire within each one of them not just to make great music, but to use the gifts and opportunities they’ve been given to make a positive difference in the lives of the kids that look up to them.”

Sherri Huitt, mother of a 14 year-old daughter, agrees. “Role models are so important, and so is the message they send — because kids want to be like them, no matter who it is, they want to be like them.” With Jump5, she adds, the message and model underscores the positive values she’s been teaching her kids at home.

Lesley, Chris, Brittany and Brandon are growing Christians, working diligently in the mainstream, and welcomed in churches and major venues alike. They have created a universally understood ‘just for us’ genre that kids can’t get enough of. That welcoming embrace has allowed Jump5 to perform in front of millions, with appearances on Nickelodeon, ABC Christmas Morning with Regis and Kelly three years in a row, two walk-ons on CBS Early Show, performances on Crystal Cathedral, PTL and the Disney Channel. The four athletic performers tour extensively, having headlined or co-headlined a total of five tours. Four Jump5 songs have landed on major motion pictures (The Lizzie McGuire Movie, Sleepover, Ella Enchanted, Brother Bear), which would thrill any teenager, but Chris, Brittany, Lesley and Brandon are most honored by their performance for President George W. Bush at The White House.

“We love this life, and we wouldn’t want to miss these opportunities we’re having right now,” Brandon says. “We’re just having fun with it. We think it’s a blast! We wouldn’t change anything.” – Courtesy of EMI

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Eli’s Cheesecake Festival Again Proud to be a venue for the World Music Festival

We opened Eli’s Cheesecake World on World Food Day, October 16, 1996. To celebrate that event and our role in the community, we annually sponsor the Eli’s Cheesecake Festival. This year is the 10th Annual which will be held on September 16-18th. The event benefits long time partners the Greater Chicago Food Depository and the New Horizons Center for the Developmentally Disabled.

Last year we were fortunate to partner with one of Chicago’s most dynamic and interesting music festivals, the World Music Festival Chicago, which is sponsored by the Mayor’s Office of Special Events. The World Music Festival brought the Mamadou Diabate Ensemble to our Festival for a free performance. We had a huge interested crowd who had never before been exposed to its West African Sound with an American flair.

We have dedicated the afternoon of Saturday, September 17th to the World Music Festival and look forward to another great day of music from around the world.


Photo of Mamadou Diabete with his Kora, which makes a harp like sound

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Greetings from the Eli’s Cheesecake Festival

What an incredible weekend. Perfect weather; great food and cheesecake from Eli’s; huge crowd and helping two very worthy causes.

We had a very successful kickoff reception on Friday night over 250 in attendance.

Yesterday was highlighted by the Happiness Club performance and the Jesse White Tumblers flying over a giant Eli’s Cheesesecake.

Today we had a crowd at 5:30am to line up for the 2pm performance by Greg Raposo. Combine that with a classic car show with over 100 entries, today will
be another great day at Eli’s.

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