NRA Hosts Operator Innovation Awards at 2012 Show

This May, Chicago will not only be home to the annual National Restaurant Association Restaurant, Hotel-Motel Show, it will also play host for the Show’s first-ever Destination: Celebration event, a kick-off party during which the winners of the inaugural Operator Innovations Awards will be announced on Saturday, May 5.

Earlier this year, the National Restaurant Association called on individuals from across the industry to nominate restaurant and foodservice operators who have transformed the industry with extraordinary creativity and commitment.

The award has five distinct categories: Technology Applications, Sustainability, Menu Development, Food Safety, and Health & Nutrition. Winners in each category, as well an Innovator of the Year, will be announced during Destination: Celebration.

Held at Chicago’s Harris Theater in Millennium Park, Destination: Celebration is this year’s must-attend NRA Show after-party. In addition to celebrating industry thought leaders, guests will be treated to music by accomplished solo artist Kenny Loggins. Attendees will also have the opportunity to connect with industry leaders and enjoy delicious fare and wonderful cocktails, all while experiencing a festive night out in the Windy City.

“As the largest restaurant and foodservice industry event in the nation, the NRA Show delivers the best in both business connections and entertainment, and our new Destination: Celebration event is the perfect example,” says Jack Crawford, convention chair for NRA Show 2012 and president and CEO of Ground Round Independent Owners Cooperative, LLC.  

“The event will allow attendees to celebrate some of the most innovative restaurateurs in our industry and network with peers, and have a good time while doing both.”

Destination: Celebration will be held Saturday, May 5, from 7 to 10 p.m.Tickets can be purchased online for $125 each, or packs of ten tickets can be purchased for $1000. Space is limited, and tickets are sold on a first-come, first-served basis.

The annual National Restaurant Association Restaurant, Hotel-Motel Show is the largest single gathering of restaurant, foodservice and lodging professionals. NRA Show 2012 will be held at its new dates, May 5-8, at McCormick Place in Chicago. The event attracts 58,000-plus attendees and visitors from all 50 states and 100-plus countries, and showcases the latest products, services, innovative ideas, up-to-the-minute information about trends and issues and other growth opportunities than any other industry event.

For more information, visit the Show website at, and find the NRA Show on Twitter @NRAShow, Facebook, YouTube, and its widely read blog, Floored!

News and information presented in this release has not been corroborated by WTWH Media LLC.