More than 100 former Playboy bunnies are getting together this weekend at the former Lake Geneva Playboy Hotel, now known as Geneva National Resort and Spa.
It's a celebration of the Playboy club that opened there 50 years ago.
It's being organized by a northwest suburban woman who was a Playboy bunny herself.
Fifty years ago this weekend, Hugh Hefner opened the Playboy Club Hotel in Lake Geneva. Over the next 14 years, hundreds of women worked as Playboy bunnies there. Diana Petersen was one of them.
“We had intense training. Our bunny manual is about 140 pages, and you had to memorize all the stuff in it,” she said.
Petersen now runs a wedding formals shop in Barrington. This week she's putting the finishing touches on a celebration marking the Lake Geneva club's 50th anniversary. More than 120 former bunnies are expected at what's now the Grand Geneva Resort and Spa. There will be photos and memorabilia.
“They're made to fit your body so they're actually really comfortable,” Petersen said.
Reminding many of the bunnies how they got started down the road to success.
“Most of us are business owners, doctors, lawyers, moms. We have judges. We have somebody who works for NASA,” Petersen said.
One of the really neat items being auctioned off this weekend is a quilt containing photographs of many of the bunnies who worked in Lake Geneva decades ago.
Petersen says Playboy was way ahead of its time when it comes to the #MeToo movement.
“Everybody knew Playboy was the place where there was zero tolerance for that. If a guy grabbed you or your tail or touched you inappropriately, he would have been thrown out,” she said.
She met Hugh Hefner in 2013. Planning for this weekend's celebration was already underway when he passed away last September.
“The Hefner’s have been so supportive and nice to us and it’s kind of a way of saying thank you to them,” Petersen said.