"Big Mac Under Glass" Honors Ken Norgan and Raises Big Money for Ronald McDonald House Charities

The annual "Big Mac Under Glass" event is always a special night in Chicago.  Not only is it a fun-filled fundraiser but it also benefits Ronald McDonald House Charities (RMHC) which recently built the world's largest Ronald McDonald House on Grand Avenue.  On March 8th, the charity celebrated the 10th Anniversary of its largest fundraiser, lovingly called "BMUG",  and honored longtime supporter Ken Norgan.

Themed an "Evening in the Emerald City", the event attracted more than 900 guests to the Sheraton Chicago Hotel & Towers for a black-tie dinner gala which raised more than $575,000 to support families of hospitalized children staying together at the four Chicagoland Ronald McDonald Houses and Ronald McDonald Family Room in Edward Hospital.

Guests joyously posed with characters from the Wizard of Oz before the program began.  Doug Porter, RMHC CEO, gave welcoming remarks and introduced the Ambassador Family, the Won Family (Dad Michael, Mom, Anne, and kids Ella Joy and Asaph).  They helped guest emcee/comedian Chris Witaske with the auction count down.  Nubia Chaidez, Director of Family Care at the Lurie House, was also onstage.

A special heads or tails raffle sent one lucky guest home with a Rolex watch valued at $8,550 thanks to James & Sons Fine Jewelers.  Guests also participated in a silent auction which featured over 230 exclusive packages and took fun, interactive photos in the Action Booth at the end of the evening.

My friend Ken Norgan, a longtime McDonald's owner/operator, co-chaired this event with Lorraine Klemz.  Ken has been a longtime supporter of so many worthy charities around town.  He's retired (although he hates this word) from McDonald's  and was honored on this night for his 37 year commitment to Ronald McDonald House Charities of Chicagoland and Northwest Indiana.   "I started making milk shakes and french fries at our first two restaurants in Glenview and Libertyville in 1958 when I was 15 years old.  After an M.A. in linguistics in 1971 from U of Michigan, I worked full time with McDonald's until I sold my last location in August 2013. Now I'm on permanent sabbatical (not retirement, please) and I don't know how I had time for a job with the 5 charitable boards and a bit of travel.  And I'm lovin' it!", said Norgan.

Congrats with love Ken!  Can't wait to see where you take us next!  (Photos by Oren Amzaleg)

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