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Mad Gravity

March 24 @ 8:00 pm - 10:00 pm

Details

Date:
March 24
Time:
8:00 pm - 10:00 pm
Event Categories:
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Venue

Riverfront Playhouse
11 S Water Street Mall
Aurora, IL 60505 United States
+ Google Map
Phone:
630-897-9496

Victorian Tea Room comes to downtown Aurora this fall

Posted by on Jul 11, 2017 in Featured News | Comments Off on Victorian Tea Room comes to downtown Aurora this fall

Victorian Tea Room comes to downtown Aurora this fall

Downtown Aurora will soon be the home of a unique new hangout spot. A Victorian tearoom. A local business owner, Tanya Barkdoll of Lincoln Avenue’s Calla Lily Salon, is opening a the new Victorian Tea Room on LaSalle Street by early fall. Barkdoll hopes to bring an authentic tea room experience to Aurora. She previously apprenticed with a tea room owner in England. Her experience doesn’t end there; Barkdoll ran Calla Lily Victorian Tea Room in Montgomery, Ill. before relocating to Aurora. Barkdoll intends for her tea room to serve traditional English high tea as well as a more casual afternoon tea, functioning similarly to English tea houses. Though the tea room is based on foreign customs, Barkdoll has been working closely with local businesses for supplies. The tea blender is a Naperville native while the honey served in store will come from an Aurora beekeeper. The tea room will function like a complete restaurant, serving sandwiches and other finger food as well as more interesting options like honey tea infusions and tea pairings with desserts and such. Barkdoll says that though the tea room is open to everyone, she wishes for it to be a place for women to congregate and for it to feel like “lounging and relaxing at Grandma’s”. She said that the former Montgomery tea room felt like a dainty women’s club, which she wants to bring to Aurora because she thinks it is a place for women to “relax and kick back and not feel rushed or hurried”. She added that the tea room will continue to host bridal and baby showers as well as women’s groups after hours like the previous location did. The tea room will fit in well with Aurora’s culture since it has already been the host of Aurora University’s Women’s Club’s annual meeting for a long time. When asked about her move to the downtown, Barkdoll said that she was motivated by how “people are so energetic about the downtown” as well as the need for a larger space. She added, “Aurora has been wonderful and accommodating. The city has been so welcoming and receptive to new business; they’re encouraging you to come and be a part of the...

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WWI Exhibit opens in downtown Aurora

Posted by on Jun 28, 2017 in Featured News | Comments Off on WWI Exhibit opens in downtown Aurora

WWI Exhibit opens in downtown Aurora

  The David L. Pierce Art and History Center’s World War I exhibit is open to the public for free until January 6, 2018. The exhibit is open from 12 to 4 p.m. on Wednesdays through Saturdays at 20 E. Downer. The exhibit is based off of the 1919 book With the Colors From Aurora, which was compiled by Aurorans about their experiences in World War I. The complete text of With the Colors From Aurora is available digitally at archive.org. Artifacts from the Grand Army of the Republic (GAR) Memorial Museum and the Aurora Historical Society are also on display. The World War I showcases the memorabilia of Auroran veterans of various branches of the United States Armed Forces, including the naval and army uniforms. Posters, as well as other forms of propaganda from the era, are displayed alongside the other historical items. One of the most impressive pieces contained in the exhibit is the lifesize replica of a trench, complete with costumes for visitors to try on, a model rifle, a gas alarm, and a periscope. The exhibit’s interactive components, such as the full scale trench replica and coloring posters, make it appropriate for visitors of all ages, even children. However, its in-depth look into WWI’s impact on Aurora and greater America mean that it is engaging to older visitors with a stronger understanding of the war as well as tourists and longtime residents of Aurora alike. While the exhibit does not explore the more gruesome parts of WWI to a large degree, it leaves visitors with a better appreciation for Aurora’s role in the war effort along with the war’s impact on the city itself due to the homage it pays to the Aurorans that participated. Laura Nicholson Tom, a employee at the David L. Pierce Art and History Center, believes that the exhibit is significant to Aurora because “our contribution, as a city, was large despite the war’s short duration.” More information about the exhibit is available at www.aurorahistory.net or www.facebook.com/aurorahistory. Words and photos by Jyotsna “Jo”...

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Help us beat the Headbanging World Record at 4th of July in Aurora

Posted by on Jun 12, 2017 in Featured News | Comments Off on Help us beat the Headbanging World Record at 4th of July in Aurora

Help us beat the Headbanging World Record at 4th of July in Aurora

  In honor of the 25th Anniversary of the release of Wayne’s World, the City of Aurora invites you to help us break the Guinness World Record for the Most People Head Banging Simultaneously. The Fox Valley Orchestra will be providing the soundtrack with ‘Bohemian Rhapsody’ performed live on stage before the Fourth of July Fireworks. (No way! WAY!) The current record to beat is just 320 people. And while we are going to smash that record, participation is limited to the first 1,000 people who arrive and are checked into the participation area. To participate: 1. Wear flannel or a bandana. 2. Come to RiverEdge Park for the Fourth of July. (It’s free and includes live music, plus food vendors will be around all evening starting at 6 p.m.) 3. When ‘Stairway to Heaven’ plays, that’s your cue to join us at the front of the park, to the barricaded area just in front of the stage. We’ll click you in to make sure you’re counted. 4. Sing along to ‘Bohemian Rhapsody’ and when cued (you know the part!) head bang! (Please be conscious of your space and your neighbors.) WE NEED VOLUNTEERS! In addition to participants, Guinness World Record attempts require a number of volunteers to act as stewards, counting the crowds, monitoring participants to make sure everyone is participating, and submitting affidavits about the attempt. Volunteers will receive an identifying and commemorative bandana and the eternal gratitude of event organizers. (We’re not worthy!) Sign up to volunteer at:...

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Aurora Museums After Dark kicks off this summer in downtown Aurora

Posted by on Jun 4, 2017 in Featured News | Comments Off on Aurora Museums After Dark kicks off this summer in downtown Aurora

Aurora Museums After Dark kicks off this summer in downtown Aurora

  Aurora Museums After Dark welcomes visitors to two downtown museums on June 8, July 13, and August 10. This summer, Aurora Regional Fire Museum, GAR Museum, and SciTech Hands On Museum are staying open for an extra few hours for families to enjoy. The museums will open from 5 to 8 p.m. on the second Thursday of the month from June to August. Children are free with paid adult admission and members are free. Each month the Aurora Regional Fire Museum will feature an array of changing activities. ·         June: Be Safe – Children can create their own mini first-aid kit and learn some basic first-aid tips. ·         July: Cool Off – Color your own fire helmet, enjoy an ice cream treat, and partake in educational demonstrations. ·         August: Create – Create your own mini collection to take home and learn about what a Museum is and why they collect what they do. SciTech will also offer interactive STEAM activities for children. GAR is open for visitors to explore. Aurora Museums After Dark is being supported by Inspection Reports Online and Aurora Downtown, with activities at the Fire Museum sponsored by Universal Security Instruments, Inc. Brian Failing, executive director of Aurora Regional Fire Museum, is excited to boost museumofferings in downtown Aurora. “This series seeks to bring families downtown to enjoy all that our great museums have to offer and allow us an opportunity to collaborate on new programming,” he said. Venture downtown when the stars are out, and enjoy a fun and educational treat for all ages....

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Memorial Day in downtown Aurora on May 29

Posted by on May 25, 2017 in Featured News | Comments Off on Memorial Day in downtown Aurora on May 29

Memorial Day in downtown Aurora on May 29

The City of Aurora will honor the service men and women who gave their lives for our country during the annual Memorial Day ceremony and parade on Monday, May 29, 2017. The pre-parade ceremony – In Memory of Many, In Honor of All – will be held at 11:30 a.m. at the reviewing stand in front of the Pierce Art and History Center, 20 E. Downer Place.   The parade steps off at noon from River and Benton streets, heads east to Broadway Avenue, turns north to Downer Place and concludes at River Street.  The best viewing area will be the in front of the Pierce Art and History Center. WWII veterans Ray Moore,  Bill Moore and William Wallbaum will serve as grand marshals. Leading the parade as Grand Marshals will be World Ward II Veterans Bill Moore, Ray Moore and William Wallbaum.   Bill Moore earned a commission with the U.S. Navy, rising to the rank of Senior Lieutenant in the British West Indies then came to Aurora, where he would later help to found public accounting firm Sikich.   Ray Moore served as a tail gunner on a B-17 “Flying Fortress,” for the Army Air Corp, and continues to be active in veteran’s organizations today, including the VFW, American Legion, and Burlington Veterans.   William Wallbaum, served as a member of the 1271 Combat Engineers Battalion in France, Germany and Austria before returning to Aurora to teach and coach at his alma mater, West Aurora High School. The 2017 Memorial Day Parade will also feature local military groups, including the Roosevelt Aurora Post 84, Amvets Post 103, Waidley VFD #468, Fox Valley Marines, GAR Commission Post #20, and the 36th Illinois Infantry volunteer re-enactors. Five marching bands – from East Aurora, West Aurora, and Metea Valley High Schools, and Granger and Hill Middle Schools —  and other crowd favorites such as the Lamplighters Chorus, the Aurora Shriners Club, the East Aurora NJROTC, Aurora 88’s Roller Derby League, Simply Destinee Dance Team, the crowd-electrifying South Shore Drill Team and more will also step off through downtown Aurora. WORLD WAR I EXHIBIT AT ART & HISTORY CENTER In addition, “With the Colors from Aurora,” an exhibit on Aurora’s involvement in World War I opens on Memorial Day, with a reception from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. in the first floor gallery of the David L. Pierce Art & History Center, 20 E. Downer Place. The exhibit includes original artifacts from the war and a life-sized replica of the trenches in which more than 3,600 Aurorans – about a tenth of the City’s entire population at the time – fought or died in European battlegrounds. The reception is free and includes refreshments from the canteen served by costumed recruits. Free parking is available in downtown parking lots and the Stolp Avenue parking deck.  The deck can be accessed on Stolp from either Downer Place or Benton Street prior to the start of the...

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First Fridays on June 2: Live music, art and more in downtown Aurora

Posted by on May 22, 2017 in Featured News | Comments Off on First Fridays on June 2: Live music, art and more in downtown Aurora

First Fridays on June 2: Live music, art and more in downtown Aurora

First Fridays is art, music, dancing, theater, and more! Visit participating venues and explore downtown on the first Friday of the month. In June, First Fridays brings more free music to Millennium Plaza with School of Rock out of Mokena, Ill. opening at 6 p.m. and Nashville country star Eric Chesser performing at 8 p.m. Food trucks Gobble Doggs and Grumpy Gaucho will be parked on Stolp Avenue from 6 to 10 p.m. Free trolley rides from 6 to 10 p.m. Take a look at the many offerings in downtown Aurora on First Fridays on June 2. Art: If These Walls Could Talk, 32 S. Stolp Ave. Transitions: Shane Small 7 to 11 p.m. Santori Public Library, 101 S. River St. Art by Gerardo R. Madrigal/Music by DJ Marco 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. Repertoire Reservoir Studios, 14 W. Downer Upstairs Canyon Crayons 7 to 10 p.m. Holbrook Mill, 121 W. Benton St. Thompson Johnson: The Art of TJ Banks 6 to 9 p.m. Music: Gazebo at Millennium Plaza, 21 S. Stolp Ave. First Fridays Concert School of Rock Mokena at 6 p.m. Eric Chesser at 8 p.m. 6 to 10 p.m. Ballydoyle, 23 W. New York St. See website. River’s Edge Cafe, 14 W. Downer Pl. TBA 5 to 9 p.m. Leland Legends, 1 S. Stolp Ave. DJ/Karaoke 8:30 p.m. to close RiverEdge Park, Broadway Two Brothers Summer Festival 5 to 10 p.m. Tickets: https://riveredgeaurora.com/events/two-bros-2017/ More: Gillerson’s Grubbery, 33 W. New York St. Book Signing: “This Call May Be Recorded, Too” by Joel Frieders Solemn Oath Brewery 6 p.m. until gone! David L. Pierce Art and History Center, 20 E. Downer Pl. Aurora Story; With the Colors of Aurora 6 to 9 p.m. G.A.R. Museum, 23 E. Downer Pl. Open to the public 6 to 9 p.m. Rocktown Adventures, 107 Spruce St. Free 15 min. paddle rides on the Fox River 6 to 7:30 p.m. All Spoked Up, 14 W. Downer Pl. Sir’ly Machinist pop up 5:30 to 9 p.m. AKA Dance, 14 W. Downer Pl. Ste. 10 Free Kids Dance Class at 6:30 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. Zen Loft Wellness Center, 6 W. Downer Pl., upstairs $5 Mini classes: yoga, belly dance, and aerial yoga. $10 sample massage and more. 6 to 9 p.m. SciTech, 18 W. Benton St. Art & Exhibits 6 to 8 p.m. Riverfront Playhouse, 11 Water Street Mall “Bus Stop” 8 p.m. $17 Tickets: http://www.riverfrontplayhouse.com/ Aurora Regional Fire Museum, 53 N. Broadway Pop Up Shop and Fire Sale 6 to 9...

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Endiro Coffee opens in downtown Aurora; brings “glocal” food and vision

Posted by on May 18, 2017 in Featured News | Comments Off on Endiro Coffee opens in downtown Aurora; brings “glocal” food and vision

Endiro Coffee opens in downtown Aurora; brings “glocal” food and vision

From day one, the idea was simple, according to Cody Lorance. “Start a small business and make a little bit of money to support organizations that help vulnerable children,” said Lorance, who owns Endiro Coffee with Gloria Katusiime, a native Ugandan.  Endiro Coffee opened in May at 29 W. New York St. along Restaurant Row in downtown Aurora. Lorance said that Uganda is home to some 200,000 children living with HIV/AIDS and nearly 3 million are orphaned. “The critical needs of the next generation are impossible to ignore and many individuals and groups are trying their best to brighten the future for young people.  Endiro Coffee was born in this spirit, as a tiny little café in the great big city of Kampala, Uganda, ready to do its part for kids in need,” Lorance said.  What came next, however, was entirely unexpected, Lorance said. Endiro quickly became popular among locals and tourists alike and the business found itself needing to grow to keep up with demand. The little café in Kampala expanded to fill the adjacent building and then began to launch new locations in other parts of the country.  In 2015, Endiro opened its 4th and 5th locations amid growing popularity and launched its first coffee growing project. Today, Endiro has established itself as one of the most popular coffee brands in Uganda and has seen its operations expand from the coffee cup all the way to the coffee tree.  Currently, some 2,000 coffee farmers – most of whom are women – are members of the Endiro Growers network and 100% of Endiro’s Ugandan coffee comes from these farmers who receive training, equipment, mentoring and the nation’s highest prices per kilogram of coffee through the partnership. All this, of course, has allowed Endiro Coffee to do more than what they had ever imagined in partnership with others to end child vulnerability, according to Lorance.  “We are amazed at what has been accomplished, but we know we are still at the beginning, the things we see on the horizon in the next year – in Uganda and in other parts of the world – are going to take us to another level in terms of what we can do for the sake of vulnerable children,” Lorance said. Endiro is now open in the heart of the Aurora’s historic downtown district.  Aurorans, Chicagoans and even diaspora Ugandans can be treated to single-origin Ugandan coffee from the village of Bukalasi in Bududa, specialty grade Ugandan tea from Mityana, and even some Ugandan street food favorites such as rolex, samosas, and muchomo.  “In true Endiro fashion, a full breakfast, lunch and dinner menu compliment a coffee, tea and juice menu that will be difficult to beat,” Lorance said.  “We call our culinary style, ‘Glocal Food’ because we like to take popular dishes from around the world and put our own, distinctly Ugandan twist on it.” The Endiro Aurora location is also a roastery, which means that all the coffee customers drink is roasted in house to ensure maximum freshness and flavor – and home brewers needn’t worry as they will always be able to take a bag of their favorite beans home with them along with Endiro’s signature t-shirt which proclaims boldly, “With enough coffee, I can change the world!” Endiro’s leaders are networking with local organizations that...

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Head bang to Bohemian Rhapsody at RiverEdge Park on July 4

Posted by on Apr 28, 2017 in Featured News | Comments Off on Head bang to Bohemian Rhapsody at RiverEdge Park on July 4

Head bang to Bohemian Rhapsody at RiverEdge Park on July 4

Aurora’s July 4th Celebration Tuesday, July 4 Park Opens: 3 p.m. American Legion Band: 6:15 p.m. Fox Valley Orchestra: 7:45 p.m. City of Aurora Fireworks: approximately 9:35 p.m. Admission: Free   RiverEdge Park always boasts one of the biggest celebrations in all of Chicagoland. Bring your friends and family to celebrate with Aurora’s patriotic American Legion Band playing incredible American standards, followed by the Fox Valley Orchestra playing from Top 40 hits to classics to your favorite movie scores. Before the fireworks, Aurora’s 25th anniversary Wayne’s World celebration ends with a Guinness world record attempt for the most people head banging to “Bohemian Rhapsody.” Finally, the evening ends in a breathtaking, jaw-dropping fireworks extravaganza that will make you realize Aurora isn’t named the City of Lights for nothing. NOTE: The City of Aurora will provide free park and ride shuttle services from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m., providing round trip transportation to 13 convenient locations throughout the city. Shuttle service resumes after the fireworks display until 11...

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US Air Guitar Competition joins the Wayne’s World celebration on May 11

Posted by on Apr 26, 2017 in Featured News | Comments Off on US Air Guitar Competition joins the Wayne’s World celebration on May 11

US Air Guitar Competition joins the Wayne’s World celebration on May 11

US Air Guitar, the official governing body of competitive air guitar in America, just announced the US Air Guitar Championships 2017 Tour, which kicks off April 20 in Queens, NY and stops at Two Brothers Roundhouse in Aurora on May 11.   Traveling to over 20 cities coast-to-coast, US Air Guitar hosts live competitions where amateurs transform into rock stars while taking a shot at going pro and becoming the next US Air Guitar Champion.   The Aurora date is part of Party On! 25 Years of Wayne’s World, a six-month local celebration of the movie’s anniversary. Competitors are encouraged, but not required to dress as Wayne, Garth, or Cassandra and perform their best air guitar.   Wayne’s World themed prizes will also be awarded to competitors courtesy of Aurora Downtown and If These Walls Could Talk, a downtown frame shop and art gallery.   Competitions are part rock concert and part comedy show. The Aurora competition features former Chicago Regional Air Guitar Champion Adrianna “The White Flame” Lombardo, comedian Matt Drufke, and local radio celebrity Scott Mackay from The River as judges. Matt “Romeo Dance Cheetah” Cornelison, former National Air Guitar Champion, will emcee the event. US Air Guitar will tour two dozen cities before crowning the US Air Guitar Champion in Washington, DC on August 5. Competitors are encouraged to sign-up early at usairguitar.com. The event starts at 7 p.m. and is free for spectators. To sign up as a contestant,...

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First Fridays fills downtown with art, food trucks, live music on May 5

Posted by on Apr 20, 2017 in Featured News | Comments Off on First Fridays fills downtown with art, food trucks, live music on May 5

First Fridays fills downtown with art, food trucks, live music on May 5

First Fridays is art, music, dancing, theater, and more! On May 5, visitors to First Fridays in downtown Aurora can visit numerous venues, explore downtown’s vibrant art scene, and fill up on food trucks. The second annual Food Truck Festival happens from 5 to 10 p.m. on Benton Street. The street will be closed to traffic from River Street to just west of Broadway. More than a dozen food vendors will be available with a variety of menu items for sale. The event is free and no tickets are required. Live music at Millennium Plaza, 21 S. Stolp Ave., celebrates Cinco de Mayo and kicks off the summer season with Sones de México Ensemble at 6 p.m. and James Sanders’ Conjunto at 8 p.m. Party On! 25 Years of Wayne’s World continues at First Fridays on May 5 with on-street trivia with prizes, and the last chance to see the replica of Wayne’s Basement at 5 E. Galena Blvd. from 6 to 9 p.m. Art openings are featured at several locations throughout downtown including the fourth annual Jazz Occurrence presented by Rena Church and Lewis Achenbach on the third floor of David L. Pierce Art and History Center, 20 E. Downer Pl. It is Church’s last show as director of the Aurora Public Art Commission; Achenbach brings musicians Tim Daisy, Jim Baker, Brian Sandstrom, and Cameron Pfiffner and adds his live painting to the evening from 6 to 8:30 p.m. Emergent, a pop up art gallery at Metropolitan Coworking at 14 W. Downer Pl. Ste. 16, welcomes Darren Jones and his “Abstraction of Colour” from 6 to 9 p.m. If These Walls Could Talk, 32 S. Stolp Ave., opens “Mosaic: Works by Frank Mascenic.” 7 to 11 p.m. Gallery 1904 in the lower level of 1 E. Benton St. presents “Congressional Art Competition,” featuring local high school artists. Students compete to have their artwork displayed in Washington D.C. at the Capitol Building. The event is sponsored by Congressman Bill Foster. 6 to 9 p.m. Oxie Affordable Optical, 131 W. Galena Blvd., welcomes author Nancy Hopp for “Ruth Van Sickle Ford Art Show.” Hopp and other Aurora residents share their Ruth Van Sickle Ford art. Hopp’s book, “Warm Light, Cool Shadows: The Life and Art of Ruth Van Sickle Ford,” will be available. 5 to 8 p.m. Repertoire Reservoir Studios, upstairs at 14 W. Downer Pl., is open with “Incendiary Gestures” from 7 to 10 p.m. Culture Stock, 43 E. Galena Blvd., hosts Washington Middle School art teacher Samantha Oulavong’s students from 6 to 8 p.m., Human Library of the Fox Valley from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. and Spoken Word from 8:30 to 10 p.m. Santori Public Library, 101 S. River St., is open with an interactive STEAM event with IMSA showcasing their virtual reality tool and Dunham STEM School seventh and eighth grade students present an interactive exhibit of energy efficient houses they each designed and built. Visitors can use a cell phone to access the QR codes on the houses that explain the individual house projects. Santori’s Makerspace will be open and showing off a variety of fun technologies. 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. River’s Edge Cafe, 14 W. Downer Pl. Ste. 18, celebrates their third anniversary with Tone Deft playing classic rock and blues music on the back...

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