Downtown Aurora Taste is May 12...

It’s that time of year again when you can sample all of the wonderful food in downtown Aurora. This year on Tuesday, May 12 the Downtown Aurora Taste offers up a dozen restaurants to sample. Visit downtown from 5 to 9 p.m. and get a taste of downtown! Free trolley rides, too. Ticket books cost $25 and can be purchased from an Exchange Club member, at the City of Aurora Office of Special Events (Downer/Stolp parking garage), or at a participating venue. The 13th Annual Downtown Aurora Taste will be hosted this year by the Exchange Club of Aurora, on Tuesday, May 12, 2015, from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m.  The event was developed by the former Aurora Study Circles organization, which ceased operation in the fall of 2007.  The Exchange Club of Aurora is now the eighth year host for this community fundraising activity.   Proceeds from Downtown Aurora Taste are allocated by the Exchange Club of Aurora, to benefit area youth, via scholarships and philanthropic contributions to local agencies that serve children.   Ticket booklets are available for $25 and will include four restaurant coupons, free rides on a trolley sponsored by Downtown Aurora (www.auroradowntown.org), a map showing the participating restaurants’ locations and a ticket that will be stamped at each restaurant visited, ensuring eligibility for a prize drawing.   For 2015, participating Aurora restaurants include: Ballydoyle Pub, Doughballs Pizza Palace, La France Bakery, La Quinta de Los Reyes, Paramount Theatre, River’s Edge Café, Reuland Food Service, Two Brothers Roundhouse and Tecalitlan.   Live entertainment will be featured as follows:  At La France Bakery: Treble Vocal Ensemble “Acora Imparo”, led by Meg Papadolias, 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.; at Ballydoyle, Dave Eno, professional smooth jazz guitarist, 5;30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. and...

First Fridays on May 1 opens 14 venues for art, music & more...

  May’s First Fridays in Downtown Aurora welcomes spring with more art openings. The monthly open house of art galleries and businesses in downtown Aurora features 14 venues with art, music, dancing, and more on May 1.   Aurora Art Studios at 50 E. Galena Blvd. is open from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. with open studios and a book signing. Experience real artist studios and visit with the artists.   The Künstlerhaus is going mobile this month. The gallery and cultural center is moving temporarily to 114 S. River St. and will offer photos by Cloud Foto from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m.   Replacing Künstlerhaus on the ground floor of the Metropolitan Business College building at 14 W. Downer Pl. Suite 16 is Emergent, a pop-up gallery run by Kit and Jason Sunderland. The gallery features guest artists and is open from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m.   Yetee Gallery at 110 Cross St. is open from 7 to 11 p.m. with photography by Susan May Moody. Moody, of Batavia, is known for capturing real life in a charming, beautiful way.   If These Walls Could Talk, 32 S. Stolp Ave., is open from 7 p.m. to 11 p.m. to celebrate “26 Days/26 Artists,” a month-long project in April featuring artists from the community who created artwork in the store.   David L. Pierce Art and History Center, 20 E. Downer Pl., opens from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. with a celebration of William A. Tanner on the first floor.   The ArtBar presents the Coffee Show this month. The ArtBar, in the tavern at Two Brothers Roundhouse, features more than two dozen local artists for one night only. Visit the ArtBar from 6 p.m. to midnight.   Culture Stock, 43 E....

New Library Opening Set for June 14; Old Library Closes May 23...

A celebration to welcome the community into the Richard and Gina Santori Public Library of Aurora is set for 1 to 5 p.m. Sunday, June 14, at the new library, 101 S. River St.   The grand opening festivities will begin at 1 p.m. with Mayor Tom Weiser, library namesake Dr. Gina Santori and Library Board President John Savage speaking, among other dignitaries. Special guests The Ides of March featuring Jim Peterik will sing “The Star-Spangled Banner” and other songs from their repertoire.   To celebrate Flag Day, the new library’s flag pole will be dedicated to all members of the U.S. Armed Forces. The grand opening festivities will include a ribbon cutting ceremony to officially open the library to the public at approximately 2 p.m.   From 2 to 5 p.m., the library will offer self-guided tours with staff members stationed at key locations to give demonstrations. In the Kiwanis Club of Aurora Children’s Library, Kiwanis Club members will read stories, balloon-twister Sue Klein will make balloon creations for children to take home, the Junior League of Kane and DuPage Counties will give away books, and Curious George will pose with children for pictures. A craft time conducted by Culture Stock Bookstore volunteers also will be taking place in the Kiwanis Children’s Library.   Visitors to the first floor Maker Space will see live demonstrations on a 3D printer, laser cutter, vinyl cutter, plotter printer, and computers with CAD, CAM, Adobe Cloud and other creation software.   Also on the first floor in the Audio/Visual Library, founding member of the Ides of March and Survivor Jim Peterik will sign copies of his new autobiography, “Through the Eye of the Tiger” as well as copies of the Ides of March 50thAnniversary CD/DVD boxed set....

El Dia de los Niños Rescheduled for Saturday, May 2...

The City of Aurora Hispanic Heritage Advisory Board (AHHAB), in partnership with the West Aurora School District 129 and East Aurora School District 131, will host its annual “El Dia de los Niños” event on Saturday, May 2 from 1 to 5 p.m. at the Aurora Transportation Center parking lot near the northwest corner of Spring Street and Lincoln Avenue in downtown Aurora. This traditional Latin American event recognizes children, pays homage to their importance in society, and endorses their well-being. This year’s theme is “Books and Libros” and both school districts are giving away more than 5,000 books to children who visit literacy stations staffed by volunteer teachers. The event is free to the public, and food will be available for purchase. Event activities will include stage performances by the West Aurora and East Aurora Children’s Choirs, Ballet Folklorico, Simply Destinee, Aztec Dance Troupe, Fox Valley Orchestra El Sistema, Teatro de Mediado from Guanajuato and much, much more. Other organizations providing free children’s activities include the John C. Dunham STEM Partnership School, Aurora Sci-Tech Museum, the First Tee, the Fox Valley Park District and Faith Tabernacle. The City of Aurora, Old Second Bank, the Aurora Housing Authority, d’Escoto, Inc., MundoFox/El Rey, Home Depot, Fifth Third Bank, Rasmussen College, Nuestra Clinicas, Rush Copley, and Hollywood Casino have generously sponsored the event and several vendors will be in attendance displaying their products including Accion Hispano and Grothman Clinic. Founded in 2002, the City of Aurora Hispanic Heritage Advisory Board’s mission is to embrace, preserve and promote the heritage and contributions of Hispanics.  In addition to supporting other citywide activities, the AHHAB hosts several significant annual events including the AHHAB Community (Awards & Scholarship) Breakfast, El Día de los Niños and for 2015, Fiestas Patrias.   For...

RiverEdge Park 2015 Summer Lineup Announced...

National acts playing RiverEdge this summer are the BoDeans (June 13), 19th Annual Blues on the Fox headliners Trombone Shorty & Orleans Avenue, Mavis Staples, Otis Taylor Band, North Mississippi Allstars and Royal Southern Brotherhood (June 19 and 20), Smash Mouth, Toad the Wet Sprocket and Tonic (July 10), REO Speedwagon (July 18), Rock the Yacht:  Little River Band, Ambrosia, Player, Stephen Bishop and Robbie Dupree (July 24), Daryl Hall & John Oates (July 31), Earth, Wind and Fire (August 22) and Meat Loaf (canceled). Aurora’s popular Downtown Alive! outdoor music series returns with One of These Nights: Eagles Tribute Band and Cowboy Jukebox (July 17) and Maggie Speaks and Catfight (August 7). Tickets are only $1 when purchased through May 31. An outdoor, sing-a-long screening of Frozen: The Movie  (August 15) is a family-friendly event that promises plenty of fun audience participation and is free to the public thanks to a grant from the Dunham Fund. Community festivals and fun special events will attract all ages to Aurora’s downtown business district including the ColorVibe 5K Race (May 31), SoulFeed Smooth Jazz Festival™ (June 6), Aurora’s Fourth of July Celebration with the Aurora American Legion Band and Fox Valley Orchestra (July 3), Sacred Heart Annual Festival & Concert (July 5), the Aurora Puerto Rican Heritage Festival (July 25 & 26), Get the Led Out: Led Zeppelin Tribute Band, the Fox Valley Irish Festival featuring The Mahones, The Ploughboys and Brendan Loughrey (September 5) and Fiestas Patrias (September 13). RiverEdge Park, 360 N. Broadway in downtown Aurora, is located directly across from Metra’s Aurora Transportation Center, on the east bank of the Fox River. RiverEdge Park’s striking John C. Dunham performance pavilion includes 30 acres of beautiful grounds, with a capacity of 8,500. Anyone who has...