2018 Itoo Supper Book

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November 4, 2018

Itoo Society, Inc.

Peoria, Illinois

Serving the Community

Since 1914


Welcome to our 91st Annual Itoo Supper. We hope you all

enjoy yourselves and satisfy your hearty appetites.

We would like to extend a gracious thank you to all the dedicated

men, ladies, and friends of the Itoo Society who generously

gave of their time, talent, and encouragement. We are proud

and thankful to have such a wonderful group that has continued

the Itoo Supper and makes it the great tradition that it is.

Thank you to all the individuals and business establishments

that have advertised in this year’s souvenir program. We highly

recommend and appreciate you patronizing our sponsors.

Sah-Thine (Eat Hearty and Enjoy)


CABBAGE ROLLS (Mah-shi Mal-foof)


BAKED KIBBA (Kib-ba Sa-nee-ya)






We are eternally grateful to all the members of the Itoo Society

both with us, and those with us in spirit, for their unquestionable

loyalty and dedication. The many untiring hours in preparing and

arranging for these suppers the past 91 years will not be forgotten.

Histor of the Itoo Supper

In November 1928, a small group of Lebanese women, all members

of the Ladies’ Itoo Society, decided to cook a meal for their friends.

These 18-20 women extended their legendary hospitality to include

nearly 100 residents of Peoria at the banquet. The women cooked

much of the food in their own homes, using their own utensils and

recipes, and then donated it to the Society.

The rest of the typical Lebanese menu was cooked in the original

Itoo Hall on McBean and McReynolds streets, where they set up their

tables and welcomed their friends to the first Itoo Supper. The Supper

was such a success that the women made it an annual affair,

expanding it to eventually serve the Lebanese cuisine to thousands

of Peorians.

For the Lebanese community,

the Supper was the social event

of the year. Young people especially

looked forward to the event since

the Supper Dance took on the

importance of Prom, Homecoming,

or a Cotillion, while the weary

mothers went home to rest their feet.

The Suppers were held in various

Peoria halls, including the original

Itoo Hall, the Itoo Hall on South

Adams, and Exposition Gardens.

In 1976 the first Supper was held

at the current Itoo Hall on

Farmington Road. 2018

marks the 91st anniversary

of the Itoo Suppers . . .

may the tradition continue.

Original Itoo Hall

McBean & McReynolds

Second Itoo Hall

1506 S. Adams Street

Itoo Hall

4909 W. Farmington Road

Histor of the Itoo Societ

The Itoo Society was founded on July 4, 1914, in Peoria, Illinois, by immigrants from the small village of

Aytou, Lebanon. Among the first of the immigrants to arrive in the United States were three cousins.

They arrived in Peoria between 1887 and 1889; they became the vanguard for all of the other families

who followed over the next century and beyond.

During the summer of 1912, a young man named Rumia Sarkis Halhoul immigrated to Peoria from Aytou.

He found a job working on an excursion boat on the Illinois River. One day, near Beardstown, the boat

struck an object in the water; Rumia fell overboard and drowned.

On August 24, 1912, he was laid to rest; his funeral and burial were paid by his cousins in Peoria. After

the struggle to pay for his burial expenses, forty-six men, our fathers and grandfathers, founded the

Itoo Reform and Progress Society, now known as the Men’s Branch of the Itoo Society. The Ladies’

Branch was founded on July 6, 1916.

From its beginning the Itoo Society was envisioned as an organization dedicated to charitable purposes.

It has lived up to that vision by helping its own members and the villagers of Aytou in times of misfortune.

As for our adopted home of Peoria, the Itoo Society works closely with many local and national charities.

The Itoo Society has flourished for more than one hundred years, making ours one of the oldest Lebanese

organizations in the country. The Itoo Society and her members have been a respected part of Peoria and

surrounding communities by helping others and living up to the vision of the Founders . . . Our Ancestors.

Itoo Societ Organized and Founded July 4, 1914, Peoria, Illinois - Charer Members

Row 1 - Anthony Joseph Slyman, Charles Anthony, Nelson Joseph, Peter Rafool, Edward Anthony, Albert Moses, Abdullah Slyman

Row 2 - William Peters, Tony Kouri Alwan, Joseph R. Alwan, Joseph Rafool, Anthony J. Slyman, Anthony Maroon, Joseph Farris, Risthum Slyman

Row 3 - Mason Unes, John Unes, Anthony Joseph, Tom Moses, Mike Couri, Lahood Peters, Charles Farris, John Joseph, Anthony A. Slyman

Row 4 - Charles Joseph, Edward Couri, Sam Joseph, Joseph Farrah, Harry Alwan, Joseph Albert, Joe LaHood, Peter Albert, Tom George

Row 5 - Peter Michael, Tom Michael, Joe Joseph, Charles Lahood, Joseph Romanus, Tony Latoof, George Joseph, Charles Maroon, John Peters

Outside (clockwise from top left) - Khoury Antoun Slyman, Khalil Trad, Tony John, Ed Slyman

In Loving Memor

As we celebrate our 91st Annual Itoo Supper,

we remember all those who have come

before us and helped pave the way to bring us

where we are today. This book is dedicated to

to all of the deceased family members of the

Itoo Society. Their unselfish giving and their

traditions that have been handed down through the

generations are the backbone of our Club today.

In Loving Memory of

the Bshara Family

In remembrance and gratitude

for Madeline Alwan’s many years

of service and love for the Itoo Club

& Supper.

Love - Mark, Debby, & Renee

In Loving Memory of

John & Agnes Couri

Event Sponsors

We would like to thank all sponsors of the Itoo Supper

who are featured throughout this book.

We ask that you support our sponsors

by patronizing their businesses

Platinum Sponsor

Cedars of Lebanon




Apartment Living for Senior Citizens

Rent Based on Income

Gold Sponsors

Mark Shipp, Agent



Gold Sponsors

Congressman Darin LaHood, 18th District

lahood.house.gov 671-7027

D. Joseph Companies

djoseph.com 692-1135

Jamie Harwood, Peoria County Coroner

peoriacounty.org/coroner 669-2000

Joe Couri Photos

joecouri.com 682-2636

Kouri’s Pub

kourispub.com 688-1971

Lariat Steakhouse

peoriasteakhouse.com 691-4731

Mark Shipp, State Farm Agent

markshipp.com 691-3909

Nicole Reese Designs

nicolereesedesigns.com 696-0041

Schooners - Morton / Peoria Heights

facebook.com/schooners.morton 263-9969

facebook.com/Schooners-Peoria-Heights 686-9895

Sheriff Brian Asbell

sheriffasbell.com 409-9649

Sonic Drive-In

sonicdrivein.com 681-7900

Silver Sponsors

Silver Sponsors

Andrew Rand, County Board District 4

facebook.com/Andrew-Rand-Peoria-County-Board-District-4-242352743211712/ 637-3843

Busey Bank

busey.com 676-0521

Christopher J. Couri, D.D.S., M.S.

christopherjcouri.com 674-4148

Landmark Recreation Center

landmarkrec.net 685-8200

Merheb Surgical Arts

myfacemd.com 353-4111

Sid Ruckriegel, Councilman

sidforcouncil.com 303-0083

Wright & Salmon Mortuary

wrightandsalmon.com 688-4441

Bronze Sponsors


Fred’s Shoe Repair fredsshoerepair.com 686-4115

Jerry Brady, Peoria County State’s Attorney 672-6900

Joseph & Hishon Chiropractic chiropracticpeoria.com 693-2225

LaGondola peorialagonadola.com 688-0800

Mike Murphy Ford mikemurphyford.com 263-2311

Thursday Night Dances

Ballroom dance nights are held at the Itoo Hall most Thursday evenings from 7:00pm - 10:00pm.

Doors open at 6:00pm. Cash bar and free popcorn are available.

Visit society.itoohall.com/thursday-dances for calendar dates and additional information

Friday Fish & Chicken Dinners

Fish & Chicken Dinners are served at the Itoo Hall most Friday evenings from 4:30pm - 7:00pm

Visit society.itoohall.com/fish--chicken-dinners for calendar dates and a complete menu

Militar Affairs Ceremony

In 2009 the Itoo Society began to formally recognize and celebrate the

honorable military service of our members at the prelude of our

annual Itoo Supper. These events have been a great source of pride

for our Society’s members and their families as we have gathered to

say “thank you” as we remember our veterans who endured countless

hardships and made life-changing sacrifices so that our Nation

remains safe and free. On those special days it has been a truly

gratifying experience for all present as we have witnessed the

true joy felt by the families of our veterans as seen through their

heartfelt smiles.

World War II Veterans

Today we honor the families of some of our Itoo members who served

during World War II. About these men we honor today . . . we will

never know the sacrifices and suffering that they endured ridding

the world of a hell that was unleashed upon the earth.

Rather, what is certain; had these men never answered the call to

arms, had they faltered and had they failed; the world we would

have known most likely would have been one shrouded in complete

darkness and absolute hopelessness. To those who stand in their

place today, they were known as Dad, Uncle, Cousin; but to a

grateful world they will always be remembered as its saviors. Let us

now honor and give thanks for these men of the “Greatest Generation”.

To Our Dear Cousins,

We are Eternally Grateful for

Your Courageous Service in Defense of our Freedom,

and We Honor the Personal Sacrifices that You Endured

for the Protection of Our Nation.

2018 Honorees - World War II

John Corbey

U.S. Army


Fred Couri

U.S. Army


Johnny George

U.S. Army Air Corps


Anthony LaHood

U.S. Army


George LaHood

U.S. Army


George Maroon

U.S. Army


Sie Maroon

U.S. Army


Ray Rafool

U.S. Navy


Anthony Romanus

U.S. Army


Upcoming Events

Watch our website (itoohall.com) and Facebook page

(facebook.com/itoosociety) for additional event details.

Tuesday, November 27, 2018

GivingTuesday / End-of-Year Giving Campaig

We invite you to join the movement this GivingTuesday in supporting Itoo Society,

Inc. as we work together to shape our future, building upon the work of so many

who came before us and continuing our rich, century-old traditions.

Satrday, Febrar 9, 2019

Trivia Night

Save the date, and make plans to join us for our first Trivia Night at the

Itoo Hall - more details to follow.

Satrday, April 13, 2019

3rd Annual Militar Retiree Appreciation Day

The annual event for military retirees features a wealth of information and

prominent speakers from throughout the local and national areas.

Sunday, June 30, 2019

52nd Annual Itoo Shish-Ka-Bob

Held annually on the last Sunday in June, our Shish-Ka-Bob features both beef

and chicken kabobs, along with cabbage rolls, salad, and Lebanese bread.

October 2019

Annual Itoo Societ Rummage Sale

Watch our website and Facebook page for additional event details.

Sunday, November 3, 2019

92nd Annual Itoo Supper

Please join us again next November at our Itoo Supper (held annually on the

first Sunday of November) as we celebrate 92 years of sharing our

Lebanese heritage with the greater community.

Tuesday, November 27, 2018

Did you know that Itoo Society, Inc. donates nearly $30,000 in actual

donations and over $30,000 in in-kind donations each year?

As a charitable organization, we strive throughout the year to support

other charitable organizations such as Saint Jude Midwest Affiliate,

American Red Cross, and Heart of Illinois Down Syndrome Association.

We also honor our country’s veterans in various activities

throughout the year, including hosting veterans and their sponsors

for a complimentary dinner on the eve of each honor flight to

Washington, D.C. (since the inception of the Greater Peoria Honor Flight).

We have always done our best to be humble stewards of a

blessed organization that our parents and grandparents left us.

We ask you to help us support others throughout the year

through your contribution on GivingTuesday, a global day

of giving fueled by the power of social media and collaboration . . .

Celebrated on the Tuesday following Thanksgiving and the widely

recognized shopping events Black Friday and Cyber Monday,

GivingTuesday kicks off the charitable season, when many focus

on their holiday and end-of-year giving.

We invite you to join the movement . . . please help to spread

the word, share our Facebook posts, and give this November 27

as we work together to shape our future, building upon the

work our parents and grandparents began over

a century ago and carried on over the years.

Itoo Hall

Banquet Facilities

Main Banquet Hall

Small Gathering Room

Outside Pavilion

4909 W Farmington Rd

Peoria, IL 61604

(309) 676-9725



Contact Us to Host Your Next Event

Semaan Trad, Business Manager

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