In July of 2012, Red Door tweeted to the Bucktown Community: "We're looking to get involved with some #Bucktown neighborhood groups...any suggestions?" Chelsea Davis, the MEF marketing associate, responded to the shout out and after a only a few tweets the two organizations were headed towards confirming the very first MEF Social (previously known as MEF Dine Outs).
The event was a huge hit and over 90 MEF volunteers, friends and fans came out. Red Door donated 25% of all proceeds from the event to MEF, totaling $1,238. Since then, over ten establishments across the city have hosted MEF Socials raising upwards of $6,000.
These events are raising awareness of Midtown and Metro across the Chicago community, bringing current volunteers together for a night out, recruiting new volunteers for both centers, and giving MEF an outlet to let people know about the bigger MEF events.
The MEF Socials are a low-level of commitment and bring at least 50 people together in support of the organization providing MEF with an opportunity to share news about the centers and announce big MEF events like the Rooftop Soiree. "When people have a great time with 50-60 MEF fans in a MEF Social type setting, I think they are more inclined to support the organization when there is a higher price point for the ticket, because they have met the people involved and trust it will be a good time that benefits a great cause."
Today, different Auxiliary Board members take turns finding restaurants and bars to host the MEF Socials. They try to vary the neighborhoods and types of restaurants so that MEF friends and volunteers can see new parts of the city and try new places. It is also a great way for newer establishments to reach an audience of 1,000+ young professionals on the MEF email list.
The generosity of the restaurants is much appreciated and MEF looks forward to making MEF Socials bigger and better than ever in its 50th year!
MEF thanks the following establishments for hosting an MEF Social: