On the eve  of the first Magnificent Mile Lights Festival in November of 1992, Rick Kogan wrote an article for the Chicago Tribune on the plans for the event and quoted Eli’s Marc Schulman, the Founding Chairman of the first Lights Festival for the Greater North Michigan Avenue Association that “we think this will mark the new coming-of-age of Michigan Avenue, our hope is that the lighting of the trees will become a holiday highlight.”

That dream was realized many time over the event celebrated in 20th Anniversary on Saturday. Our congratulations to the volunteers, staff, sponsors and partners who work together throughout the year to plan such an outstanding event.

Greater North Michigan Avenue Chairman and President of Harry Caray’s, Grant Deporter, and Eli’s President and Founding Chairman of the Magnificent Mile Lights Festival, Marc Schulman, walking up Michigan Avenue as part of the Legacy of Leaders.

John Curran, Grant Deporter and Marc Schulman (all former Lights Festival Chairman) with Ellen Farrar, Vice President of Communications for the Greater North Michigan Avenue Association and the author of “the Magnificent Mile Lights Festival” the authoritative history of the event.

Eli’s Maureen and Marc Schulman celebrating the 20th Anniversary of the Magnificent Mile Lights Festival.


Eli’s Cheesecake is a supporter of the Happiness Club, a group of kids from all over the Chicago area who reach out to their peers through original songs and dance. The Happiness Club was honored to participate in the opening number for the live broadcast of the Magnificent Mile Lights Festival on ABC 7, a show that will be broadcast around the country during the holiday season and is available online at http://abclocal.go.com/wls/story?section=resources&id=7799567.