Celebrate River Advocacy at the Big Fish Ball

Join us May 31 for a special evening to celebrate our collective advocacy for the Chicago and Calumet rivers and their tributaries. The 16th Annual Big Fish Ball – our largest fundraising event of the year – brings together hundreds of Friends’ supporters, partners and civic leaders at the Westin Chicago River North hotel overlooking the Chicago River.

Get your Big Fish Ball tickets here

“The Big Fish Ball is a special evening to reflect on our accomplishments and to re-commit ourselves to vigorous advocacy and bold action for the transformation of the Chicago-Calumet River system,” said Margaret Frisbie, executive director of Friends of the Chicago River. “As the voice of the Chicago-Calumet River system, it’s an honor to bring people together for clean water, healthy habitat, public access, and equitable investments across the region.”

Also at the gala event, Friends will honor the recipients of the Chicago River Blue Awards, which celebrate the highest achievement in river-sensitive designs for the protection and improvement of the Chicago-Calumet River system and surrounding watersheds. Attendees will also have an extraordinary opportunity to get up close to wildlife similar to last year’s Big Fish Ball, which included a Canadian lynx, an alligator, a Burmese python, and several species of owls, a Blanding’s turtle, a possum, and a skunk. The evening will conclude with a beautiful After Party Cruise on the Chicago River.

The Big Fish Ball is an accumulation of the hard work and commitment of our gala committee, co-chaired by board members Ryan Christopher Green and Jo Trahms, as well as numerous dedicated volunteers, donors, and partners.

A special thank you to our Big Fish Ball sponsors including our Presenting Sponsor McDermott Will & Emery whose generosity makes the celebration possible.