‘Red Carpet on Green’ to feature local stores

As a way to thank local merchants for their support throughout the school year, the Spirit of 67 and Lake Forest High School foundations will host Red Carpet on the Green at Lake Forest’s Market Square on Saturday, Sept. 13.

The free event will offer a sneak preview of the latest looks for school and beyond, featuring local models walking the red carpet wearing the newest togs and accessories from 17 of Lake Forest and Lake Bluff’s local retailers. The second annual Red Carpet on the Green, held under a large white tent set up on the Green in Market Square, will take place rain or shine from 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

Market House, at 655 Forest Ave. in Lake Forest, will participate with a special offer for lunch after the fashion show on Saturday, Sept. 13. Diners should mention the event when making their reservation and the restaurant will donate 10 percent of its bill to the schools’ foundations.

This year’s event will be the second time local business owner Edna Schneider has participated in Red Carpet on the Green.

Last year’s inaugural event was “great,” said Schneider, who owns tween apparel store Izze & Jo and gift shop EJ Mirage, both located at 248 Market Square.

When asked if she’d participate this year, her answer was quick.

“Absolutely,” Schneider said. “It was very fun and the kids loved it.”

Schneider reports new and returning customers came into her shops looking for the featured items — and to check out what else was available — after last year’s inaugural fashion show, timed to coincide with the BMW Championship at nearby Conway Farms Golf Course.

Heading to participating local stores is exactly the reaction event organizers hope for.

“We often go to those retailers for support either through financial contributions or items to use in benefit auctions or to sponsor large events,” Martha Zeeman of the Spirit of 67 Foundation said. “We need to support them, too.”

Having “vibrant” retail districts is as important to a community as having great schools, she said.

“This is an easy way to support them and complete that full circle,” Zeeman added.

People who shop participating retailers from Saturday, Sept. 13, through Monday, Sept. 15, can also benefit the schools’ foundations. If they mention the “School Shop & Share” event, 10 percent of the proceeds from their sale will go toward the Spirit of 67 and Lake Forest High School foundations.

While bringing in some funding for the school foundations would be nice, it’s not the biggest goal at the upcoming Red Carpet event.

“The main focus is the fashion show, which is drawing attention to the stores, which is great,” said Liz Brandel of the Lake Forest High School Foundation. “The stores are very supportive of the high school, in general. This is a good chance to help them and put the focus on shopping local.”

Fashion show-goers should look closely at the models, who will include students, friends, neighbors and even some teachers.

“People can see regular people — their friends and neighbors as models,” Brandel said. “It’s a fun thing to do.”

Stores participating in the Red Carpet on the Green fashion show and shopping event are Alixandra Collections, EJ Mirage, Forest Bootery, Forest & Found, Gifted, Izze & Jo, J.McLaughlin, Kiddles Sports, Lake Forest Resale Shop, The Lake Forest Shop, Lillie Alexander Ltd., McElroy Furs, The Mustard Seed, Sara Campbell, Three Sisters, TSE and Voila.

Schneider encourages everyone to attend — and to bring friends.

“It’s a very nice event,” she said. “It’s a good day.”

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