AELO Events Define American Film Festival, 4/20-23

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VENUE: VENUESIX10 | OPENING NIGHT RECEPTION CATERING: ENTERTAINING COMPANY | DONOR RECEPTION: THE BLACKSTONE | LIVE STREAM PARTNER: NOW THIS | TECH: MAINSTREAM MEDIA | DJ: JOSHUA LOPEZ

When Define American approached us to help plan their annual film festival, we were thrilled to be considered, and then honored to be chosen. It was an undertaking unlike any AELO has seen, and it was a massive success! Guests enjoyed an art installation of portraits of Dreamers by Helday De La Cruz, a VR demonstration, gained some knowledge at a census exhibit, took part in thought provoking discussions, laughed through a comedy night, and of course enjoyed the important films telling these stories. After each screening, guests enjoyed informative panels, featuring Nico Santos, Bambadjan Bamba, Reshma Shetty, Bethany Yellowtail, Paola Mendoza, Ala'a Basatneh, and many others.

From their website, "Define American is a non-profit media and culture organization that uses the power of story to transcend politics and shift the conversation about immigrants, identity, and citizenship in a changing America." This important work is done by a talented, dedicated, and wonderful team, with whom we had the pleasure to work for the planning process and three day weekend. You can still check out the livestreams of the panels on the website! 

If you would like to join the cause and donate to Define American, you can do so here.

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AELO Alumni Alyssa + Edward, 10/14/17

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When one of us gets married, you know it's going to be gorgeous! Our fabulous Assistant Coordinator Alyssa has been a huge asset to AELO, and we were THRILLED when she got engaged and started to plan her own wedding. She tied the knot with her handsome husband Ed down in St. Louis, and we couldn't resist sharing the incredible photos from Sarah Corbett Photography. Gorgeous, no?! She is a FIERCE beauty. 

Alyssa thanks her AELO teammates who have helped her in the planning process and helped her feel cool, calm, confident, and collected the day of the wedding!

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AELO Alumni Nathan + Shantelle, 11/5/17

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VENUE: THE LONG ROOM | CATERING: BEARD + BELLY | PHOTOGRAPHY: TCMCG PHOTOGRAPHY | LIGHTING: ART OF IMAGINATION | FLOWERS: THE FLOWER FLAT

Remember, remember! What an incredible wedding! Nathan + Shantelle are big ol' nerds and we love them so much we don't have the words to express it. There was a Doctor Who proposal, complete with Tardis, nerdy decorations, and they got married at their favorite bar. It was such a great party, and Shantelle is giving us those perfect Victorian ghost vibes...exactly what she wanted. Such a beautiful couple, a beautiful love, and a fabulous time. Truly an event less ordinary. 

We love you two. CONGRATULATIONS!

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AELO Alumni Cassie + Stefan, 12/2/17

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CEREMONY: BOND CHAPEL | RECEPTION: PRAIRIE PRODUCTION | PHOTOGRAPHER: BONPHOTAGE | DINNER CATERING: SMOQUE | STAFFING, RENTALS, APPS: LULA CAFE | VINTAGE FURNITURE: CHICAGO VINTAGE WEDDINGS | FLOWERS + DRAPING: YANNI DESIGN STUDIO | DJ: TOAST + JAM | MAKE UP: EFFORTLESS BEAUTY | HAIR: ERIN GRAHAM | DESSERT: ALLIANCE BAKERY, STAN'S DONUTS, NOTHING BUNDT CAKES

What a perfect end to a fabulous 2017 season! Our last wedding of the year was everything: stylish, fun, full of love, delicious, beautiful...everything! Cassie + Stefan got married at the beautiful and intimate Bond Chapel, and somehow we got a sunny 52 degree December day! It was thrilling. Cassie wore an incredible Alice + Ivory gown, and Stefan wore. that. blue. velvet. We loved every minute of this day, from the sweet vows to the stunning florals, to Cassie's incredible decor, to the wonderful guests which included Michelle + Miles AND Siobhan + Bill! Total perfection all around.

We wish these two generous, wonderful people a lifetime of happiness. Congratulations, beauties!

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AELO Alumni Gina + Norris, 7/22/17

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VENUE: FIRST UNITED CHURCH OF OAK PARK | PHOTOGRAPHY: PFEIFFER PHOTO | CATERING: WASHBURNE CULINARY INSTITUTE | CAKE: SUGAR FIXE | MUSIC: KARA KESSELRING BAND | PHOTOBOOTH: SHUTTERBOOTH 

What a lovely day we had with Gina + Norris! Such a sweet couple to celebrate love with. We had so much fun transforming their church space with Washburne Catering into a gorgeous reception! It was a hot, humid, beautiful day, and Gina made such a lovely bride. We were ecstatic for her as she took a quiet moment and then walked herself down the aisle to her handsome groom. Delicious food followed, a magician entertained the guests, and Shutterbooth provided fabulous memories for the couple and guests.

Congratulations, Gina + Norris! We know you're going to have a wonderful life together! 

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