With the arrival of sweaters and fall leaves comes this year’s ISSA/INTERCLEAN® 2006 trade show. From October 4 to 7, thousands of building service contractors, in-house professionals, distributors and manufacturers will flock to Chicago’s McCormick Place. Fresh ideas and innovative seminars make certain that this year’s show will rival the success of those in the past.

In addition to the expansive trade show floor, there are numerous educational and networking opportunities for attendees. ISSA has assembled a quality lineup of speakers to talk about the latest industry and business trends (for more information see ISSA.com). In between seminars on Wednesday, bring your business cards to the All-Industry Networking Lunch.

One of the most exciting features at this year’s show is keynote speaker and former New York City mayor Rudy Giuliani who will present “Principles of Leadership” on Thursday. The question-and-answer session following his presentation gives trade show visitors a chance to pick the brain of one of the nation’s most influential leaders.

Continuing the casual atmosphere established at last year’s show, ISSA/INTERCLEAN® 2006 is giving attendees plenty of entertaining experiences. The ISSA Innovation Revue features Chicago-style gangsters and molls showcasing the latest products. Afterwards, attendees will be able to cast their vote and declare the winner. On Friday, get ready for the antics of the Blues Brothers as they perform a live concert during Happy Hour.

Windy City must-sees
Just because the trade show day is over doesn’t mean the excitement has ended. Chicago’s welcoming personality gives visitors an endless list of entertainment opportunities and unique experiences.

For first-time Chicago visitors, sites such as Navy Pier (600 E. Grand Ave.), Sears Tower (233 S. Wacker Dr.), and Lincoln Park Zoo (2200 N. Cannon Dr.) are encouraged. But after visiting the traditional city sites, visitors should lose themselves in one of the world’s most exciting hubs.

The metropolis is residence to some of the world’s most unique and treasured art. The Art Institute of Chicago (111 S. Michigan Ave.) gives visitors a chance to view works by famed artists such as Chagall and Dali. The site is said to have the most Impressionistic paintings outside of the Louvre in Paris. The untitled sculpture by Picasso outside of the Daley Center Plaza (50 W. Washington St.) welcomes visitors, as do the various sights and spectacles at Millennium Park (55 N. Michigan Ave.). The 110-ton Cloud Gate sculpture at Millennium Park is a great photo opportunity with it’s mirrored, bean shape.

Or, unwind from the trade show at one of the city’s premier stage productions. Briar Street Theatre (3133 N. Halsted St.), a one-time horse stable, is now home to Blue Man Group. The blue, bald heads of Blue Man Group have been entertaining audiences since the early ‘90s and are sure to amuse. The Second City (1616 N. Wells St.) is a legendary school and comic troupe based out of Chicago. Launching the careers of both Belushis, Chris Farley and Dan Akroyd, Second City trains newbies and gives the audience a sneak peak at future comedians. If a Broadway spectacle is what you crave, Chicago offers that, too. “Wicked,” the worldwide hit that centers around the Wicked Witch of the West, is playing throughout the week of the trade show at the Ford Center for the Performing Arts, Oriental Theatre (24 W. Randolph St.). Advance ticket purchases are recommended.

The tour of Chicago continues with a whirlwind of history. The city houses millions of years of history at its various museums, which include the Museum of Science and Industry (5700 S. Lake Shore Dr.) and The Field Museum of Natural History (1400 S. Lake Shore Dr.). During the trade show, the Field Museum has over 120 artifacts from the reign of King Tut in an exclusive exhibit. Want to go back further in time? The Adler Planetarium & Astronomy Museum (1300 S. Lake Shore Dr.) takes visitors back to the creation of the Earth.

The Chicago nightlife has visitors flocking to the city and staying up all night. Haunts like Green Dolphin Street (2200 N. Ashland Ave.) and Blue Chicago (536 N. Clark St.) present Chicago-style blues and jazz the way it was meant to be. Enjoy a cigar and an old-fashioned sing-a-long at The Red Head Piano Bar (16 W. Ontario St.). If you feel like cutting the rug, Excalibur (632 N. Dearborn St.) offers practically any music preference and karaoke for brave souls.

Eating out in Chi-town
The hustle and bustle of a busy trade show and a day in Chicago can certainly work up an appetite. Whether it’s the city’s famous pizza or slow-cooked wild salmon, Chicago dining will please any palate.

Ninety-five stories above the electric streets of Chicago, The Signature Room at the 95th (875 N. Michigan Ave.) offers the pinnacle of dining excellence in the John Hancock Center. Visitors enjoy award-winning dishes while relaxing to the restaurant’s live jazz music and incredible views of the streets below.

The equally upscale Alinea (1723 N. Halsted St.) has all the excitement of a gallery combined with the cuisine of a five-star restaurant. Working with a creative team, owner and chef Grant Achatz, creates dishes that employ state-of-the-art utensils, turning food into instant art.

If eating a piece of art just isn’t what your stomach had in mind, then wander over to Pizzeria Uno (29 E. Ohio St.), the home of the Chicago-style pizza. The atmosphere is cozy and the pizza is plentiful. It’s the perfect meal to warm up from the crisp autumnal weather.

A little more out of the way, but just as cozy, Lula Café (2537 N. Kedzie Blvd.) prepares organic and multi-ethnic food. The café obtains many of its ingredients from local farmers and offers extensive vegetarian fare — much healthier than a Chicago dog piled high with relish.

Speaking of relish, if you are looking for a mid-day break, head over to Perry’s Deli (174 N. Franklin St.) for a roast beef sandwich rumored to be as big as your head.

And don’t forget that breakfast is the most important meal of the day. To ensure you are ready for the energetic show schedule, stop at Lou Mitchell’s (565 W. Jackson Blvd.) for the best breakfast in town. Cradled in the heart of Route 66, Lou Mitchell’s has been filling weary bellies since 1923. Not only are their scrambled eggs famous, but visitors also receive free doughnut holes and milk duds while they wait.

The excitement of one of America’s favorite cities along with the endless opportunities at ISSA/INTERCLEAN® 2006 are sure to make this one of the best trade shows.

You can register for the convention by Internet, fax: 847-982-1012 or mail in your registration form to: ISSA, 7373 N. Lincoln Ave., Lincolnwood, IL 60712-1799.