First Fridays on Dec. 4 is Festive, Holiday Party at 17 Venues

A paper bag turned into art by Maureen Gasek will be among others available at the annual Pack the Pantry auction at If These Walls Could Talk on Dec. 4. during First Fridays.

A paper bag turned into art by Maureen Gasek will be among others available at the annual Pack the Pantry auction at If These Walls Could Talk on Dec. 4. during First Fridays.

Downtown businesses are opening their doors and celebrating the holiday season with art, music, and dancing on the first Friday in December. Decorated windows and a bright, shining star atop the Leland Tower add to the festive evening.


First Fridays, a night of art, music, and culture in downtown Aurora, on Dec. 4 features a full night of holiday cheer with a heart of gold from an auction of artwork made out of paper bags at If These Walls Could Talk to a collection of gifts for Mutual Ground at Michael Edward Smith Photography.


Blue Bird Beat Cafe joins the First Fridays lineup this month, and The ArtBar prepares for the end of the world. Grab some stocking stuffers at The Yetee and Friends Holiday Bazaar.


Pick up a free First Fridays passport at any venue for a full map of participating venues. Return the punched passport at the last venue visited for a chance to win a First Fridays goody bag.


In December, the following venues are open for First Fridays.


Aurora Regional Fire Museum, 53 N. Broadway, is all decked out for Christmas with it’s fun, hidden firemouse family. “Teamwork Brotherhood” continues on the second floor. The show highlights nearly two dozen retired Aurora firefighters. 6 p.m. to 9 p.m.


Yetee Gallery, 110 Cross St., opens for The Yetee and Friends Holiday Bazaar, a show with Yetee employees and friends selling gift items for the holidays. 7 p.m. to 11 p.m.


Allen and Pepa Architects, 121 W. Benton St., features library sculpture artist Jim Jenkins and his “Graphplotfictions,” messages, meditations, and mysteries from the Deux ex Machina sculpture at Aurora’s Santori Library. 5 p.m. to 9 p.m.


Paramount Theatre’s Grand Gallery, 23 E. Galena Blvd., opens “Essential Elements,” an exhibit of landscape and seascape oil paintings by renowned artists William Worcester and Eric Nils Forsberg. The show hangs through January 31, 2016. 7 p.m. to 9 p.m.


David L. Pierce Art and History Center, 20 E. Downer Pl., offers three floors of exhibits. Aurora Public Art Commission opens the annual “Winter Garden of Youth” on the third floor from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m.. Aurora Historical Society presents “Bundled Up,” an exhibit of historic winter clothing on the first floor, and  “Aurora Story” on the second floor. Museum Store is open with 2016 calendars. 6 p.m. to 9 p.m.


Emergent at Metropolitan Co-Working, a pop-up gallery at 14 W. Downer Pl. Suite 16, shows the works of resident artist Kit Sunderland. 6 p.m. to 10 p.m.


HealthMarkets, 40 W. Downer Pl., is open with oil paintings by artist Tom Mahady. 5 p.m. to 8 p.m.


Michael Edward Smith Photography, 61 S. Stolp Ave., offers special holiday photo mini sessions at their festive party. Bring new, unwrapped toys, books, clothes, and personal items for Mutual Ground and receive a free photo. Call (630) 689-7871 for reservations. 6 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.


If These Walls Could Talk, 32 S. Stolp Ave., celebrates a night of giving with their annual “Pack the Pantry” auction for the Aurora Area Interfaith Food Pantry. 7 p.m. to 11 p.m.


Santori Public Library, 101 S. River St., opens its annual holiday exhibit, “Holiday Celebrations in Many Lands,” a multicultural display of Christmas trees. Local musician Greg Boerner performs. 6 p.m. to 9 p.m.


AKA Dance, 14 W. Downer Pl. Ste. 10, provides a free jazz and hip hop class from 6:30 to 7:00 p.m. followed by a Christmas story and goodies. 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.


Culture Stock, 43 E. Galena Blvd., hosts open mic on First Fridays. 6 p.m. to 9 p.m.


The ArtBar at Two Brothers Roundhouse, 205 N. Broadway, features the “End of Days Show,” a pop-up art show with artwork inspired by the apocolypse. 6 p.m. to midnight.


River’s Edge Cafe, 14 W. Downer Pl., is open until 10 p.m. with food, art, and music. 6 p.m. to 9 p.m.


SciTech Hands On Museum, 18 W. Benton St., is open with free admission plus the opening of the anticipated new space exhibit on the lower level. 6 p.m. to 8 p.m.


Aurora Fastprint, 54 E. Galena Blvd., hosts their annual Wagon Wheel party with photographs by Sabrina Kifowit, a senior at Oswego High School. 6 p.m. to 10 p.m.


Blue Bird Beat Cafe, 9 S. Stolp Ave., is open and hosts a few artists in the Leland Tower’s restored lobby. 6 p.m. to 9 p.m.


First Fridays Dec 4, Aurora


Free trolley service runs throughout downtown from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m.

Gobble Doggs food truck will be parked on Stolp during the evening in front of If These Walls Could Talk, 32 S. Stolp Ave.

YM Boutique is open until 9 p.m. with 15% off. Mention “First Fridays” at Midtown Pub & Grill for a discount. Additional businesses are open late with specials; check their Facebook pages, etc. for more information.

First Fridays in Downtown Aurora invites the community to enjoy art, music, food, theater, and more on the first Friday of the month.
All events are free and art is for sale.