The 32nd Annual Columbian Ball: October 20, 2012
On Saturday, October 20, 2012, the Museum of Science and Industry held one of Chicago’s premier social events: The 32nd Annual Columbian Ball. From the fascination of the famed White City of 1893 to groundbreaking, high-tech exhibits, this year’s Ball celebrated the spirit of innovation that has always been within the Museum’s walls and part of its history.
Nearly 900 guests enjoyed an evening of cocktails, hors d’oeuvres, dinner and dancing. We express our sincere gratitude to our honorary co-chair, Mayor Rahm Emanuel; our Ball co-chairs, Lisa and Jeffrey Aronin, Christina and Ron Gidwitz and Mary Ann and Barry MacLean; and our auction co-chairs, Susan and Rick Lenny and Martin Cabrera, Jr. It is through their work and dedication that we were able to exceed our goal raising nearly $2.2 million, a new best, to support the Museum's vision.
As guests arrived, they received a special welcome by Anybot QB2, a remote-controlled robot. The evening began with a cocktail reception in the Museum’s Rotunda where guests were transported back to the White City. Historic images of the Museum from the Fair were projected on massive marble walls, giving the Rotunda a spectacular glow. An acrobatic artist spun and twirled from a sheet of silk hanging from the Rotunda’s ceiling. The Museum’s Science Storms exhibit was open throughout the evening for guests to enjoy. In Rosenwald Court, novelties from the Fair (including two large paintings and a six-foot-tall vase) from the Museum’s Collection were displayed. A virtual, simulated tour took guests through the Fair’s grounds and various buildings. On the adjacent side, current and future innovations and technologies were featured. Guests interacted with robots, like the Anybot QB2 and NAO; and since spray paint was invented during the Fair, guests paid homage to the invention by expressing their creativity on a “digital graffiti” wall.
Guests also celebrated the Museum’s Center for the Advancement of Science Education (CASE) – created to achieve the Museum’s vision to inspire and motivate children to reach their full potential in the fields of science, technology, medicine and engineering. Guests interacted with local Chicago teens, teachers and Science Minor Club facilitators who all participate in our various CASE programs. The teens also demonstrated how to use 3D printers from the Museum’s Wanger Family Fab Lab. As dessert was being served, the live auction kicked-off with this year’s celebrity auctioneer, well-known Chicago journalist Bill Curtis. Exciting trips and unique experiences were part of the auction as well as a special moment in the evening where guests raised their paddles to contribute to support CASE programming.
The evening ended with live entertainment by The Steve Biossat Orchestra.
The Museum extends a special thanks to the following sponsors
Presenting Sponsors: Lisa and Jeffrey Aronin, Christina and Ron Gidwitz, and Mary Ann and Barry MacLean
Principal Sponsors: Allstate Insurance Company, BP America, Inc, Max and Jim Farrell, Andi and Jim Gordon/The Edgewater Funds, ITW, Connie and Dennis Keller, Cathy and Bill Osborn, Reyes Holdings, LLC, Kathleen and Jim Skinner, United Airlines
Co-Sponsors: Abbott, Anonymous, Bank of America, James E. Bramsen, Rita and John Canning, The Chicago Community Trust, The Crown Family, CouponCabin.com, Dover, Exelon Corporation, Jacky and Michael Ferro/The Sun-Times Foundation, Grosvenor Capital Management, L.P., Mr. and Mrs. John Krehbiel, Jr., Robert R. McCormick Foundation, Susan and Bob Morrison, Molex Incorporated, Motorola Solutions, Inc., Northern Trust, COL (IL) J.N. Pritzker, IL ARNG (Ret.), Takeda, Walgreens
Thank you to everyone who supported and attended our event this year!
Save the date: October 19, 2013
Our 33rd Annual Columbian Ball will be held Saturday, October 19, 2013! We look forward to seeing you then.
Give a gift today to inspire the inventors, innovators and scientists of tomorrow.
about the museum
The Museum of Science and Industry opened its doors in 1933 and is the largest science museum in the Western Hemisphere.