Aurora Downtown

Yvonne Boose

A northern Illinois art festival took place Saturday despite the pandemic, but the setting wasn’t as intimate as in previous years.


Art fairs are common around springtime but for a lot of vendors this year, it’s not business as usual. That’s due to COVID-19 and social distancing. Two Fox Valley Area artists found a way to help bring in revenue, despite what's going on. 

Kelsey Rankin is the founder of Hemp Club Jewelry. She worked with her friend Laura Lynne to create a Virtual Artisan Market. 

Guy Stephens

Aurora’s downtown is transforming into what some are calling an “arts district.” 

Melissa Mercado is the executive director of the Fox Valley Music Foundation. It runs The Venue, a performance space located in the heart of downtown Aurora.

The Venue opened in 2019.  Mercado said the atmosphere of the 200-seat listening room is casual. Most sit around tables, and food and drink are available, and the offerings are intentionally eclectic.