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January 31, 2020

Dear Friends,
Welcome to the 36th edition of the Jane Network News! A new day and new decade is a wonderful time to renew, reflect and remember those resolutions. 

Enjoy the read!

Born to be in the events business!

HAPPY NEW DECADE! People ask me how I got into the events business and I tell them I was born into it. At age 4 my parents (the late) Tony & Alberta Canepa started a dancing school in Baraboo, Wisconsin and at the age of 5 I had completed a year of dance lessons and we put on a recital at the local high school. My first recollection of a special event was my appearance on stage at the end of a dance lineup with my younger sisters Bertie and Claire. Later in life Bertie continued the dance tradition and Claire shuffled off to a life that didn’t include dance until her children were born.

The original Dance School began in 1955 and was carried on for over 40 years by my sister Bertie Canepa Reifsteck – she is truly THE “DANCING” CANEPA, the rest of us (10 siblings still living!) just hold her in admiration and awe and we gather to dance our family theme song and traditional dance WHISPERING at family gatherings. (

For my son Christopher, born on 12/5/79, his first appearance at an event was on stage at the historic Al Ringling Theatre at five-months, sporting my youngest brother Tom’s dance costume, a diaper and a smile! His grandmother (my mom) his God-mother Bertie and I were all very proud!

Chris reverted to the behind the scenes work but became a master at all things technical and has a career and life path in computer systems and technology function & architecture. Any time he has a sales pitch he can still do a pretty good tap dance! ( Special to me, Christopher and his wife Tina welcomed my #3 grandchild, Bjorn Christopher Jonsson on 1/24/2020. 

Moving to Chicago was always a goal for me and as a family we made trips to town as often as we could. As a tap-dancing performance family, we were invited to tap dance in the Columbus Day Parade along with our Italian counterparts and many famous Chicagoans. We joined in the Annual Chicago Christmas Parades, performed at McCormick Place, Carson Pirie Scott & Co. and on Bozo’s Circus. My father’s early years of promotion for our family began with the dance school and a live television show airing on Saturday afternoons in Madison, Wisconsin. The show was called Canepas Capers and featured our family, several classes of students and a ballroom dance lesson given by my parents. Appearances on yearly fundraising telethons in Madison and Milwaukee Wisconsin gave me a chance to observe the world of special events at an early age. PR and events were my passion and that continues to this day!

My first events business was the corner Kool-aid stand that I operated as the President & CEO. The staff was way too many neighbor kids and of course my younger brothers and sisters. Too much overhead!

I moved along to organizing and planning birthday parties at age 15 – I orchestrated the games, prizes and activities and the parents were assigned the catering: the hot dogs, chips, drinks and cake. As I got older, I even drove the kids’ home from the party!

As I tell my Columbia College events students and anyone else who wants to know, that if you want to be a success in the events business, you must like people! And it helps to be born with that character trait! Ask any showman!

Alex Rausch
Alex Rausch was the baby in my best friend's Rick & Gwenn Rausch’s family. His older sister Aryn and brother Eric had already been roped into special events with me through their childhood friend Christopher. Events always need people and kids, and pets are good for media and publicity. From running events to face painting to photo opportunities with Santa and the Easter Bunny and from media stunts to Halloween parties it always helped to have a “staff” of youngsters to bring into the project.

The 1997 Easter at the White House event in Washington D.C. was Alex’s first event. At 4 he came to the event along with his parents and sat at the elbow of his older brother Eric, whose job it was to take 1500 polaroid photos an hour of people lined up to tour the Boston Market Space Station Tent. 

Fast forward 24 plus years and Alex is a multi-talented young event professional and the Head of Operations HYROX North American Headquarters based in New York NY  - he is managing the US rollout of a new series called HYROX that is a combination of HIIT (High intensity interval training) and an 8K race. Hyrox is planning to host 13 events for our next 'season' 2020/2021. 

Jane meets Alex Rausch at Navy Pier Hyrox event on January 25 and granddaughter Elliana joins in as a volunteer!

Zanah Thirus

Zanah started college when she was fourteen years old. She took my class her junior year when she was seventeen. She had so much fun learning about events and project management. Eventually, Zanah went to film school but Jane's class sparked her sense of wonder and pushed her to explore different industries. 

Today, Zanah is a producer, director, actress and writer from Chicago who is featured as Diversity in Cannes Top 10 Filmmakers of the Decade. Since 2015, she has produced 14 films, five of which are streaming on Amazon Prime Video. Her film festival credits include an official selection at Bronze Lens Festival of Atlanta (2019), Best Female Director Award (Cineplay TV Awards 2016), Best Director Nomination (Georgia Shorts Film Fall Festival 2019) and The Best Short Film nomination at the Content Creator of Atlanta Awards (2019). 

Since launching her brand, Zanah Thirus Productions LLC, Zanah has shifted her focus to merging arts and activism through documentary and narrative storytelling. Her films surround subjects such as gender, rce, politics and mental health.

With over 44 years of planning, promoting and publicizing events, we proudly announce that we have joined forces with MSM Promotions (Powered by Proforma) to make event planning more efficient.

Expect more services with continued streamlined planning from us.

Stay tuned for more announcements on our new partnership.

Celebrate Mardi Gras at KiKi's!
February 18th - February 25th 

Indulge your senses in selections from from the Old French Quarter of New Orleans!
Let the good times roll!!

Jane Network Night
Wednesday, February 26, 2020
5:30pm - 8:00pm

Complimentary Valet Parking
Early dining menu specials with appetizers, fine wine and cocktails.   

Kiki's Bistro 
900 N. Franklin Street
Chicago, IL 60610
312.335.5454 (KIKI)
Graduating this year? Planning your next career move? Want to maintain your personal and professional connections? Let Jane help! Email us your story and we'll help connect you to the right person, who can connect you to your future! 
Looking forward to seeing you soon! 

Jane E. Canepa
President, The Eventors, Inc. 
312.217.JANE (5263)
Copyright © *2019* The Eventors, Inc.*, All rights reserved.

Our mailing address is:
3180 N. Lake Shore Drive, #23E, Chicago, IL 60657

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