Tuesday, June 4, 2013

June 8: Fun, Free & Family Day on Water and on Land in Aurora, IL

Five free, family-fun events encompassing a variety of tastes are on tap this weekend in Illinois’ second largest City.

The day begins at 8:00 a.m. on Saturday, June 8 with the weekly downtown Aurora’s Farmers Market at the Aurora Transportation Center, 233 N. Broadway Av.  The market, which will be held every Saturday through Oct. 19 and running until noon each day, is celebrating its 101st anniversary and is the oldest Farmers Market in Illinois.  Farm-fresh produce, a variety of flowers, gourmet wines and cheeses, free knife sharpening services and much more will be offered at the market.

In addition, the Northern Illinois University School of Family, Consumer, and Nutrition Sciences will be on hand to offer food demonstrations and samples of in-season local produce, Presence Mercy Medical Center will be offering free blood pressure and diabetes risk factor screenings and Journey Cycle and BMX will be providing free bicycle checkups.

Once again this year, Illinois electronic benefits transfer (EBT) link cards will be accepted for purchases.  The market is presented in association with contributing sponsor AT&T U-Verse. More information about the Farmers Market, including two additional markets opening in July on the City’s Far East and West sides, is at www.aurora-il.org.

At 9 a.m., the Louche Puce Market, an outdoor European-style vintage and collectible fair, returns to downtown Aurora on the Water Street Mall located between Galena Boulevard and Downer Place.  Patrons can re-purpose an eclectic mix of antiques, retro-furniture, vintage fashion and more until 4 p.m.  The market will be held the second Saturday of each month through September.  For more information, contact Jeannie Norris at louchepuce@gmail.com.

The Aurora Green Fest will be held from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. June 8 at the Fox Valley Park District’s Prisco Center, 150 W. Illinois Ave.  The event, which will highlight the latest environmental ideas and technology, will feature more than 50 eco-friendly exhibits and speakers featuring environmental services, money-saving tips, on-site recycling of everything from electronics to old and unwanted medications, hands-on children’s activities, and more. The event is sponsored by the Aurora Green Lights in affiliation with the Conservation Foundation.  For more information on the festival and the organization, visit www.auroragreenfest.com

Saturday also marks the first day of both the Aurora Paddlesports Festival and Art in the Park at Phillips Park, 1000 Ray Moses Drive.

The Paddlesports festival is a two-day canoeing and kayaking festival that will take place from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. June 8 and 9 on Mastodon Lake inside Phillips Park.  Patrons can take check out plenty of activities both on water and land for beginners and experts, including free boating lessons, vendor demonstrations and skill competitions. The fifth annual festival is being presented by the Illinois Paddling Council in partnership with the City of Aurora.  For more information, visit www.illinoispaddlesportsfestival.org

After taking a ride on the lake, patrons can stake claim to more land-based activities with Art in the Park from noon to 5 p.m. June 8 and 9.  The second annual event will feature live music, an art sale and show, and refreshments for purchase including a wine tasting at the west end of Phillips Park. 

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