Our History

In 1996, Thomas Martin . . .

Thomas Martin

...a little boy with cancer from McHenry County, was asked if there was anything special he would like for Christmas. His simple wish was twenty-five new hats for the children who were going through chemotherapy with him.

The Hats Off For Thomas Chamber Mixer was established from his request. Over five hundred hats were donated at that first event. For the next six years the Hat Mixers grew to include live and silent auctions and the money raised was contributed to Children's Memorial Hospital in Chicago for pediatric cancer research. In 2004 the Hat Mixer was replaced by a Gala and It's All About Kids, a 501 (C) 3 organization was formed. In 2016 It’s All About Kids started our Annual Festival at the Farm which is a family friendly event on the Martin family farm.

Since the beginning we have raised more than ONE MILLION dollars, giving 100% of the profits to Chicago’s Lurie Children’s Hospital for Pediatric Cancer Research, and to forty McHenry County families (so far…), facing the burden of medical care and other related costs.