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Buddy Guys
Buddy Guy's Legends

Discover diverse Chicago businesses

An array of local women- and minority-owned businesses are at the ready to assist in planning and successfully executing your next Chicago meeting or event. Whether you need a venue, caterer, VIP gift, or specialty service, Chicago’s diverse vendors can help.


Plan a night of bonding and team building at King Karaoke in Chinatown. Attendees will have fun singing solo or performing a group sing-along in one of 12 state-of-the-art karaoke rooms that can accommodate up to 25 people. Round out the experience at this luxe, Asian Pacific-owned venue with a VIP package that includes craft cocktails and Asian-style pub fare such as bao buns, grilled skewers, orange chicken, and egg rolls.

Sloomoo Institute
Sloomoo Institute

Hold a creative event at the woman-owned Sloomoo Institute, where attendees can feel like kids again. At the hands-on museum in River North, sensory activities include creating slime from a choice of more than 40 colors and 60 scents. Guests can also walk through 360 gallons of slime and play with kinetic sand. Rent the party room for up to 35 guests or book the entire venue for a larger event.

Boat on the Chicago RIver
Chicago’s First Lady Cruises

Book a private charter aboard one of Chicago’s First Lady Cruises’ seven yachts. The woman-owned company can accommodate groups of up to 250 people on their vessels, which feature open-air decks, interior salons, and catered meals — with the Chicago River and Lake Michigan as stunning backdrops. Consider booking a docent from the Chicago Architecture Center to narrate the spectacular sights your group will sail by during the cruise.

The legendary Buddy Guy’s Legends, helmed by famed bluesman Buddy Guy, offers space for events ranging in size from 30 to 600 guests. The menu at the Black-owned South Loop club features Cajun fare like Louisiana-style gumbo, catfish tenders, crawfish étouffée, cornbread, and red beans and rice. Service can include passed appetizers and create-your-own buffets. Staff members are happy to offer suggestions for live entertainment that will create a perfect musical score for your event.

Renting The Quarry Event Center helps benefit the mission of owner Yvette Moyo’s Real Men Charities. The nonprofit focuses on health and wellness, in addition to the preservation of Afro American arts, culture, and heritage. The Black-owned South Shore community center offers two rooms — one that accommodates 150 people and the other with a capacity for 85 — for meetings or events. ETC Wellness Café and Imani Original Pies are in-house catering options, or a commercial kitchen is available for use. Be sure to check on the venue’s current availability.


For groups of 10 or more, the Black- and woman-owned Two Sisters Catering offers a menu of hot and cold options that can be served at their Chicago Avenue restaurant or delivered to your meeting site. The restaurant features chef/owner Veah Larde’s signature wraps, such as the turkey club and jerk chicken, as well as salads and desserts. Chef Larde also makes lighter versions of Southern favorites, including homemade buttermilk cornbread, ground turkey meatloaf, and herb-baked chicken.

Nicole Jordan Catering, a woman- and Black-owned business, offers full-service catering and a professional staff for events and meetings of all sizes. Among the options are boxed lunches, as well as plated breakfast, lunches, and dinners. From cheese and fruit platters to passed small bites, crudité shooters, and savory main dishes, the focus is always on quality, flavor, and fresh ingredients.

Woman-owned Limelight Catering embraces a farm-to-table approach that incorporates sustainable, locally sourced food. Meet the team and craft a custom menu of food and drinks specially curated for your attendees. It can be as creative as omakase with items like scallop carpaccio and parsnip ice cream, or a collection of food stations that reflect diverse cultures. Limelight’s talent procurement team can help if you need to secure an event speaker.

Atzimba Catering & Events owner Atzimba Perez, who doubles as the chef for Chicago’s Mexican Consulate, uses indigenous staples in her traditional recipes for Mexican, pre-Hispanic, and other international cuisines. Breakfast, lunch, and dinner menus for events of nearly any size can include green mole dishes, coconut flan, chicken or dark chocolate tamales, and salmon al pastor. Taco bars and veggie lunches are also options.

The Indian Garden
The Indian Garden

Woman-owned The Indian Garden in Streeterville is known for Indian fine dining. But owner Anu Sharma also offers award-winning cuisine for catered events. Meals for 15 to 1,500 guests can feature Indian fare or other world cuisines, including Middle Eastern, Chinese, Mexican, and Italian. Chicken, lamb, and vegetarian dishes are specialties. Dessert can be an ice cream station serving flavors like mango, fig, and cashew-raisin.


Order premium merchandise customized by the city’s Hispanic-owned CHICAGOMIDWESTMADE. Items branded with your company logo or message can include T-shirts, beanies, hoodies, and jackets from brands like Champion, Dickies, and Hanes. Explore services like screen printing and embroidery at the Pilsen store, or view their offerings via the online catalog. Stickers and banners are also available.

Chocolat Uzma mini chili bar
Chocolat Uzma

Chocolat Uzma specializes in personalized gifts for meeting or event VIPs and attendees. Sweets at the woman- and Asian Indian-owned chocolate shop in Pilsen reflect South Asian culture. Some of the gift box choices feature Himalayan caramels, cookies, date cakes, and sipping chocolate. Dark, white, and milk chocolate bon bon flavors include Moroccan mint, ginger, Kashmiri chai, passion, coffee, and more.

Let TeeMart Apparel Company create promotional items to help make your event a memorable one. The Black-owned mother-and-son business in Albany Park can print or embroider messages and graphics on apparel, tote bags, banners, keychains, coasters, drinkware, and more. Mix and match items with a custom package.

Sugar Bliss cupcakes
Sugar Bliss

Gift your attendees boxes of French macarons in pastel colors and creative flavors from Sugar Bliss, a woman- and Asian Pacific-owned bakery located in the Loop. CEO Teresa Ging also offers cupcakes by the dozen and catering services featuring made-from-scratch treats like breakfast pastries, cake pops, brownies, and cookies. Sugar Bliss can also bring its popular Sweets Cart to your event.

Whatever tea you can imagine, it’s likely the woman-owned Chicago Teahouse will have it. The Chicago Favorite Sampler includes Scottish breakfast, the Windy City signature blend, and Earl Grey. Other gift ideas include mugs, tumblers, tote bags, and tea sets. Chicago Teahouse also offers tea tastings and classes featuring matcha and Japanese teas.


The woman- and Black-owned CHOP CHOP Mobile Salon & Mobile Barbershop can provide on-site, multicultural hairstylists, barbers, nail techs, and makeup artists who are skilled at working with a variety of clients. CHOP CHOP can easily bring a pop-up team or its luxury four-station salon and barbershop trailer to your event.

Whether you need a motor coach, sedan, SUV, van, or limousine, Fellowship Fleet Limousine & Bus Company can provide your transportation. The Black-owned company’s fleet of luxury vehicles offer comfort and professional, dependable chauffeurs. Fellowship offers shuttle service to airports, events, group outings, tours, and more. Book via customer service agents who are available 24 hours a day.

The woman- and Hispanic-owned MOTR GRAFX specializes in delivering stunning graphics. The printing company has expanded its portfolio over the past 25 years to include billboards, vehicle wraps, window dressings, digital campaigns, interactive direct mail, and trade show booths. Photography, design, packaging, and fulfillment services are also available.

Black-owned Show Strategy and GCJ Hospitality Resources ensure that your event will go off without a hitch. Show Strategy takes care of the strategic planning, installation, and execution. GCJ Hospitality delivers professional staffing, providing everything from hospitality workers like bartenders and chefs, to convention support services such as service desk management, registration professionals, and booth models.

EJP Lifestyle offers a fresh approach to planning events, creating memorable moments that bring people together. Chief Experience Curator Erika Jones Purvis uses her passion — in addition to a background in the visual arts, music, dance, stage, and production — to style events and create brand-first spaces. EJP also specializes in luxury gift wrapping, with a designer line of paper, bows, and bags that always impress gift recipients.

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