Former U.S. Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson will be among the speakers for an old-fashioned gathering in Barrington next month known as a "town warming," with a day devoted to economics, philanthropy and other topics.
Barrington's cultural commission will re-create the concept from the 1930s and '40s on Saturday, Feb. 3, at the White House on Main Street.
It was known as a town warming because Barrington leaders at the time wanted to bring people together in cold weather to learn about issues affecting their community and the world at large.
Barrington spokeswoman Patty Dowd Schmitz briefed the village board about the event at Monday night's meeting.
"The idea was to bring intellectually stimulating speakers of national and local significance," Schmitz said. "It was actually, at the time (in the '30s and '40s), over a two-week period that everyone gathered in the high school auditorium and they had lectures from folks that were known far and wide."
Set from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. and called "Reality Check: Where We Are Today and Our Vision for the Future," the revived warming will have speakers including Barrington native Paulson, WGN radio talk-show host John Williams, Motorola Solutions Chairman and CEO Greg Brown, and Heather Larson, incoming lead pastor of Willow Creek Community Church in South Barrington.
Barrington Village President Karen Darch will moderate. She said it's exciting to bring "this type of intellectually stimulating experience back to our community in the modern age."
"The event was so popular that it became a national model for these types of events across the country," Darch said of the warmings that ended at the onset of World War II.
Space is limited to 120 participants. Tickets, available at barringtonwhitehouse.com, are $55 for the day and include continental breakfast, boxed lunch and a post-event reception sponsored by Barrington Bank and Trust.