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November 21, 2018 
Dear Friends and Colleagues, 
Welcome to the twenty second edition of Jane Network News. This month's theme is about anniversaries, celebrations, past clients, friends and family.  Enjoy the read and have a
Happy Thanksgiving! 
On October 4, 1976 I walked over to City Hall and gave Stanley Kusper the Registar of Deeds $5.00 for a business license to register my company, The Eventors in Chicago, Illinois.  I remember the day and that my dream to become a certified business owner and an official “eventor!” came true!  You know what “they” say!  Be careful what you wish for!
While I still had my “day job” as Manager of Special Events and Public Relations at Carson Pirie Scott & Co., I knew I needed to get back to the business entrepreneur spirit that was instilled in me from an early age.  My parents were entrepreneurs and business owners and our lives revolved around our family dancing school, my father’s Goodyear Tire and Appliance store and our performing tap dancing family.   I tell people that our family is like “the Waltons” only we tap dance.
As I mark my 42nd year in the events and promotions business it has been an adventure.  Every day is a special event and you can make it a good one or a bad one!  On Saturday, September 15, 2018, my son Christopher Jonsson planned the best event ever. He married Tina Yackle and together they created one of the most wonderful and outstanding events I have ever witnessed and been part of – and all I had to do was show up! They planned everything!   A huge shout out to Chris & Tina for the lovely weekend in Elburn, IL – family & friends, weather, venue, food, wine and dancing, the celebration was fantastic!   
Raymond Joseph

A very dear friend and one of our early Eventor designers & stylist Raymond Joseph started his design artistry 40 years ago. Raymond was naturally the go to stylist for Christopher and Tina's wedding in September. The décor, the lighting, the florals, the tables and extra touches were spectacular!  Between the roses, ribbons, baby’s breath, candles, and greenery every inch of Heritage Farm was extravagant and elegant from floor to ceiling.  Amidst tulle and lights, blue wine glasses, rustic table settings and greenery the event was extraordinary.  Find Raymond on Facebook at
My beloved family members (except for Jim – flu-bug! and our dear departed Mary) performed our famed buck and wing tap dance routine “Whispering”.  Bertie’s husband Dennis sings the song and my granddaughter Elliana videotaped the dance “on my phone!”  Every family needs a theme song and Whispering is ours!   Dancing Canepa line up: from left Chris, Antoinette, Jane, Bertie, Claire, Tony, Joe, Diane & Tom. Check out the video here

Jane at 4 years old

I was so very proud of Christopher as he introduced his aunts and uncles before we tap danced.  Years ago, when my father introduced each of us when we performed he had nicknames for most of us, mine was “his little Norwegian”.    It did take me a while to figure out what that meant - I guess it was because of my natural red hair.  Years later I held true to dad’s nickname as I met and married Christopher’s father, Vidar Jonsson who was born in Reykjavik, Iceland.    With my natural red hair still natural, I joined Vidar at the wedding as we celebrated with our one and only son as he began this next chapter in his life.  I guess I still look like a little Norwegian albeit a bit older and not so little! 


The Eventors were hired to promote the Motorola 13.1-mile Half-Marathon in 1993 on the company’s corporate and commercial areas of its Schaumburg Campus.  The event grew to over 4,500 participants and was dubbed the best running race in the northern suburbs.  It was the USA TF (USA Track & Field) Women’s National Championship offering prize money ranging from $2,000 to $3000 which attracted a talented field of elite runners.  The course was flat and fast, and many runners achieved their personal bests.  Half-marathon record holders Mark Curp and Lisa  Weidenbach were part of the field.  The event was held four weeks prior to the Chicago Marathon and the timing was excellent for both an elite-status athlete and a general participant as the race was used as a tune-up for the 26.2-mile marathon. 

Two running enthusiasts that I met at the “Manny Hanny Corporate Challenge” were from the Motorola Running Team.  Motorola employees and running enthusiasts Chet Phillips and Carol Skarlat were the race directors for this outstanding event.  The race was held for four years and the first year had 1800 runners. 

Here is a recent excerpt from Chet’s archives: 
“Chet, where does the camel go?”, screamed a frustrated voice on the walkie talkie.  So that ended a perfectly good night of sleep.  It was 25 years ago this month that I fulfilled a dream of being a race director for a major running race.  In 1993, we launched a road race called the Motorola Half-Marathon and Relays at Motorola’s World Headquarters in Schaumburg.  It involved 600 volunteers, 4500 runners, hotels, churches, non-for-profit organizations, elite runners, two municipalities, and a very nervous – 33-year-old – me.  To be fair, I quickly enlisted the remarkable capabilities of Carol J. Skarlat as my co-race director as well as Jane Canepa from The Eventors and others to help make this ambitious plan work.  Volunteers led hundreds of people to their posts at 4:30 am on a Sunday.  We also were lucky enough to position the race as an appropriate warm up race to the Chicago Marathon just 3 years into Carey Pinkowski’s legendary reign.  Time does fly. 

The camel?  Several major organizations took ownership of various water stops and that was the oasis-themed one.  The runners loved it…my nerves didn’t."                                                        

Grete Waitz

For this event we had the pleasure of bringing the late Grete Waitz, the world’s most revered road race athlete to the event as a spokesperson.  Grete joined many of her athletic colleagues over the three-day festival and mixed and mingled with the runners both novice and elite.  Grete Waitz was Norway’s most famous athlete and unfortunately, she passed away at the young age of 57 from cancer.  Winner of the New York City Marathon® nine times, world championship cross-country race winner five times and world champion in the marathon from 1983 to date.  She was the symbol of the sports movement and female revolution in Norway in the 1980’s.  Once a year the streets of Oslo are filled with about 50,000 female runners participating in the “Grete Waitz Race” which has become more popular with common Norwegian women of all ages.  Grete Waitz had a remarkable influence on other women’s sports and an Olympic champion.  She was an inspiration to women everywhere in the world and particularly from her beloved country of Norway. 

Grete is honored with a statue located outside the Bislett Stadium in Oslo and is also honored with a commemorative postage stamp.  On Sunday, November 4 the New York Marathon ® took place in New York City. This year the winners were:  first place male winner Lelisa Desisa from Ethiopia, finished at 2:05:29 and first place female winner, Mary Keitany from Kenya with a time of 2:22:48,  followed by Vivian Cheruiyot and Shalane Flanagan. 

Last year Shalane Flanagan was the first American woman to win the New York City Marathon® in 40  years.  Shalane finished with a time of 2:26:53.

P.S. this little Norwegian had Grete Waitz as a role model and fitness mentor as she pushed me to get off the couch and try a marathon.  I did complete three New York City Marathons although I was a walker.  Everyone should try this event at least once! 


In 1976, one of The Eventors first clients was the Greater North Michigan Avenue Association, now called The Magnificent Mile Association.  History tells us that Michigan Avenue had a name change and somewhere after the great Chicago Fire which took place October 8 – 10, 1871.  Michigan Avenue originally ended at the Chicago River, and what is now Michigan Avenue north of the river was originally named Pine Street, after scattered pine trees originally found in its vicinity.  As early as 1891 plans were proposed to extend Michigan Avenue north across the river.  An early plan called for a tunnel to link Michigan Avenue south of the river with Pine Street and in 1903 an editorial in the Chicago Tribune newspaper proposed a new Bascule bridge across the river at Michigan Ave.  The plan was further elaborated upon in Daniel Burnam’s 1909 Plan of Chicago and in 1911 Michigan Avenue was widened and included a new double-decked boulevard along Pine Street as far as Ohio Street.  Pine Street was flanked by other trees street names:  Oak, Elm, Maple, & Cedar.   Can you see the forest through the trees?  The Magnificent Mile Association has done exactly that! 
When the Michigan Avenue Bridge was completed, Pine Street was renamed Michigan Avenue.  Today, the area north of the Chicago River is referred to as the “Magnificent Mile”.  It is home to Chicago’s famous Water Tower landmark, built in 1866 and designed by William W. Boyington, the castle structure still stands today.  The Mag Mile contains a mixture of upscale department and specialty stores, restaurants, high-end retailers, office buildings and hotels.  It caters to Chicagoans, tourists and visitors.  Each year the association launches “The Magnificent Mile Lights Festival” which took place the weekend of Friday and Saturday November 16 & 17, check it out at   Over 1 million people lined the streets of Michigan Avenue for this festive procession that begins at Oak Street and ends at the Chicago River at Wacker Drive.

As early marketers and promoters of the GNMAA – my staff and I made calls to solicit membership in the first business to business organization which had the mission of uniting business owners to help secure traffic into retail stores and hotels.  Even after all these years some things remain the same.  They still have the same phone number and I still remember it! -  (312) 642-3570.  My Columbia College Events & Promotions classes volunteer at the Lights Festival each year.  It is a wonderful experience. 

Danielle Marlett

Danielle Marlett took Jane’s Special Events class at Columbia College in Spring of 2016, which fostered a whole new outlook on events. She attended to one of the volunteer opportunities Jane provided for the class- and from there has cultivated a side profession in Race Management. This was exactly the opportunity she needed to experience to understand what direction she wanted to push her career! She started working for the Chicago Marathon that year; returning since 2016 to work both the Shamrock Shuffle and the Chicago Marathon. Danielle nurtured her enthusiasm for working the Chicago Marathon into opening the opportunity to work the Detroit Marathon and for a race management company in Michigan, Trivium Racing. She does all of this while working for a Robotics Company doing marketing back in Michigan, however her passion for events was fueled after attending Jane’s class!

Danielle is continuing her education back in Michigan, but she has plans to travel and continue to work in events as her career flourishes. She can be reached at

The St. Nicholas Orphanage Fund

On May 6, 2016, Danielle and her special events class hosted a Jammin with Jane benefiting the St. Nicholas Orphanage Fund. In the spirit of the holidays, please consider a donation to the St. Nicholas Orphanage Fund. See below for more information. 

Learn more about The St. Nicholas Orphanage Fund here

Join us !
Monday, November 26 from 5:30pm to 8:00pm 
Monthly Social Media Social Hour and Jane Network Night at Kiki’s Bistro 

Kiki's Bistro 
900 N. Franklin Street
Chicago, IL 60610
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Looking forward to seeing you soon! 

Jane E. Canepa
President, The Eventors, Inc. 
312.217.JANE (5263)
Copyright © *2018* The Eventors, Inc.*, All rights reserved.

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

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The Eventors, Inc. · 3180 N Lakeshore Dr · #23 D/E · Chicago, IL 60657 · USA

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