Join us for a unique evening to support Naper Settlement’s Agricultural Interpretative Center at the Barn Raising Benefit on Nov. 5 at 6 pm at 523 S. Webster St., Naperville, IL. This special night will feature a preview of the center, which aims to preserve our region’s rich agricultural history. Guests will enjoy cocktails and a beautiful, locally sourced farm-to-table dinner by green restaurant and caterer Big Delicious Planet. Tickets are $250 each. To reserve tickets or for more information, please contact Nata-Leigh Preas at

The Barn Raising Benefit will present the Agricultural Interpretive Center’s exhibitions, virtual technology and hands-on programming that will showcase stories of real-life farming families of the past and teach the business and science of modern-day farming to Naper Settlement’s 140,400 annual visitors. The proceeds from the benefit will support the new 5,000 square-foot center, which will be the ideal place to share and talk about agriculture, the engine that feeds the planet.

The Agricultural Interpretative Center will employ cutting-edge technology to relate the facets of the city’s farming past using a trio of themes and the preservation of key artifacts, each offering a separate aspect of the story. Other exhibits will focus on farming innovation will demonstrate the roles of analytical thinking, mechanical comprehension, a grasp of plant physiology and other intellectual processes that now work under the banner of STEM — science, technology, engineering and math — in fortifying the food chain. Displays that relate the business aspects of farming will convey the crucial part the profession played in the development of the local

Agricultural journalists, Orion Samuelson and Max Armstrong of WGN Radio’s “The Morning Show with Orion and Max” will be the masters of ceremony for the evening. Samuelson and Armstrong both grew up on Midwestern farms and recognize the importance of educating urban residents and students on agriculture.

For more than 55 years at WGN, Samuelson says he’s been trying to build bridges of understanding between farmers and city residents. “It becomes more important than ever to educate city folks, or as I say non-farm consumers, on what it takes to put food on their table, clothes on their back, a roof over their head and now energy in the tank,” said Samuelson.

“I’m hopeful the Agricultural Center can lead the way to better understanding and that’s why it is important to support educational programs based on science,” said Samuelson. “That is why I am coming to Naperville in November to support the Center and see first-hand the programs it will use to build that bridge of understanding between farm and city folks.”

Growing up on farm in Naperville, Barn Raising Benefit Event Co-Chair Mary Ann Bobosky said the benefit’s objective feels personal to her. “The Agricultural Interpretive Center is going to be wonderful. It’s going to be a place that will showcase our farming history from when our families first came to Naperville in the 1800s till now. I think this is a really great opportunity to invest in the future of Naper Settlement.”

Naper Settlement plans to cultivate the future by providing fun, interactive experiences that foster the knowledge and appreciation of the importance of farming in Naperville and the region. The Barn Raising Benefit will help to sow the seeds for a whole new experience at Naper Settlement. To learn more about the Barn Raising Benefit and the Agricultural Interpretive Center, visit

Honorary co-chairs include Richard Benck, Mary Benck, Wilbert Hageman and Ruth Hageman. Event co-chairs for the evening will be Mary Ann Bobosky and Brien Nagle. The planning committee includes Kathryn Birkett, Richard Clemmons, Sharon Covert, Dave Kelsch, Patty Lindstrom, Nina Menis, Leah Rippe and Macarena Tamayo-Calabrese.