It’s commonly known as a day of art, music, and spectacle in downtown Aurora and will be back on Water Street Mall this August.
But Alley Art Festival is giving fans an early treat with an indoor, curated show featuring just over a dozen festival artists at next month’s First Friday on Feb. 5.
Hosted at If These Walls Could Talk, 32 S. Stolp Ave., the first Alley Art Festival Show will have affordable, local art for sale. The show runs throughout February.
“It’s a chance to support local artists and to thank them for being so dedicated to the arts community in Aurora,” said show organizer Marissa Amoni.
First Fridays, a night of art, music, and culture at a variety of venues in downtown Aurora, also features art from talented siblings Ariel and Chris Hodge, free snowshoeing, and Valentine-making.
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 February, the following venues are open for First Fridays.
* Aurora Regional Fire Museum, 53 N. Broadway, has vintage firefighting-themed Valentines on display. Create your own Valentines. 6 p.m. to 9 p.m.
* Allen and Pepa Architects, 121 W. Benton St., presents the intricate and fantastical works of Aurora artist Chris Hodge. 5 p.m. to 9 p.m.
* Paramount Theatre’s Grand Gallery, 23 E. Galena Blvd., presents the detailed paper cuttings of Ariel Hodge and aspiring artists from North Central College. 7 p.m. to 9 p.m.
* David L. Pierce Art and History Center, 20 E. Downer Place, offers three floors of exhibits. Aurora Historical Society presents “Bundled Up,” an exhibit of historic winter clothing on the first floor, and “Aurora Story” on the second floor. 6 p.m. to 9 p.m.
* Gillerson’s Grubbery, a new place to eat and drink at 33 W. New York St., shows the works of mural artist Brian Busch. 6 p.m. to 10 p.m.
* If These Walls Could Talk, 32 S. Stolp Ave., hosts The Alley Art Festival Show featuring a dozen local artists and a variety of spectacle throughout the evening. 7 p.m. to 11 p.m.
* AKA Dance, 14 W. Downer Pl. Ste. 10, provides a free jazz and hip-hop class at 6:30 and a Valentine’s Day open studio afterwards. 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 Red Show,” a pop-up art show featuring local artists. Alexander Webb and Small Shiny Things perform in the tavern. 6 p.m. to midnight.
* River’s Edge Cafe, 14 W. Downer Place, 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 fun craft stations. 6 p.m. to 8 p.m.
* Blue Bird Beat Cafe, 9 S. Stolp Ave., is open with live music by Jake Mack in the Leland Tower’s restored lobby. 6 p.m. to 9 p.m.
* Rocktown Adventures, 107 Spruce St., offers free snowshoe “tromps” in the green space by their building. Headlamps are available to borrow. 6 p.m. to 8 p.m.
* Mausoleum Gallery, 213 S. River St., is open with art, glass blowing, music, and hundreds of glass pieces on display. This month, the gallery is showcasing healing crystals from Arizona. 7 p.m. to 11 p.m.
Free trolley service runs throughout downtown from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m.
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. For more information, a list of First Fridays specials at participating businesses, and for a map of venues, visit www.auroradowntown.com.
— Alley Art Festival kicks off Aurora’s First Fridays with winter show —