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Looking for fun things to do in the Peoria Area? We have you covered. Below you can explore a wide variety of events and activities happening in Peoria, IL.

Exhibit Opening: “The Art of Olof Krans: Painter of Bishop Hill”

December 18, 2014
Peoria Riverfront Museum
222 SW Washington St.
Peoria, IL 61602
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An exhibition celebrating the paintings of Illinois’ best-known folk artist, Olof Krans, who documented 19th century life in Bishop Hill, is opening to the public Oct. 11 at Peoria Riverfront Museum. “The Art of Olof Krans: Painter of Bishop Hill” was created in conjunction with the release of a new book on Krans and his work.
The show will feature more than 20 paintings, as well as several items of furniture and artifacts from the Bishop Hill Colony – some of which have never before been displayed in Peoria. Works include portraits of early settlers, views of the colony’s ocean voyage from Sweden, and scenes of early life in Bishop Hill.
Exhibited works come from the museum's permanent collection, a local private collection and the Bishop Hill Museum – which loaned two large-scale paintings including Krans’ famous self-portrait at age 70. The exhibition is curated by Kristan H. McKinsey.
The exhibit celebrates the release of a comprehensive survey – or catalogue raisonné – of Krans' work and his documentation of life in the Bishop Hill Colony. The fully illustrated hardcover book, The Art of Olof Krans: A Prairie Vision, 2014, is available for purchase in the museum store.
The book features essays on Krans’ legacy by Chicago art historian, Esther Sparks, and Martha Jane Downey, Superintendent of Bishop Hill State Historic Site.
It was published by Peoria Riverfront Museum and sponsored by Illinois folk art collector, Merle H. Glick, with additional funding from the American Folk Art Society and David Connor. Printing was made possibible by a grant from the Barbro Osher Pro Suesa Foundation of San Francisco, Calif.

1. "Manufacturing Traditions" Exhibit

December 18, 2014 - Closed on Sunday's and Holidays
Caterpillar Visitors Center
110 SW Washington
Peoria, IL 61629
(309) 675-0606
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The tradition of manufacturing at Caterpillar has stood the test of time for nearly 90 years. Many of the tried and true tools and processes that date back to the 1920s still have a home in the modern factories of the 21st century.

Our newest exhibit features a documentary-style film celebrating two employees each with 65 years of service to Caterpillar, a digital photo album containing more than 60 photos and more than 150 artifacts showcasing Caterpillar’s culture of safety, training, quality, employee recognition -- and the processes that ensure Caterpillar products are the best in the world.

We invite you to take a look at nearly 90 years of manufacturing at Caterpillar as we celebrate the thousands of production workers – the people who create the yellow iron – with our ‘Manufacturing Traditions’ exhibit, now through February 2015.

Exhibition opening: “Impressionism to Modernism: A Paradigm Shift in American Art”

December 18, 2014 - 10:00AM to 12:00PM
Peoria Riverfront Museum
222 SW Washington St.
Peoria, IL 61602
309-863-3006
Add to Itinerary

A new exhibit on the evolution of 20th century American art opens to the public at Peoria Riverfront Museum Sept. 27. “Impressionism into Modernism: A Paradigm Shift in American Art,” is a visual journey through the dramatic transformation of American art from the academic realism of the 1880s to the abstract expressionism of the 1940s and 50s.

Presented within the cultural and historical context of the time, the exhibit showcases modern art – mainly paintings, drawings and prints – made in the United States from 1880 to 1950 by American and foreign-born artists. The story focuses on artists working in Chicago, which became the cultural center for the Midwest following Great Chicago Fire of 1871.

Accordingly, the exhibit draws from several Illinois art collections, including those of Dr. William H. and Nancy Marshall, Peoria; Illinois State Museum, Springfield; Richard Norton Gallery, Chicago; and Clifford Law Offices P.C., Chicago.

Among the works included in the exhibit are two paintings which have never before been on public display, on loan from the Clifford Law Offices.

Curated by Kristan H. McKinsey, the exhibit also traces the impact on American art of pivotal historical events, including two world wars and the Great Depression, cultural revolutions such as the 1913 Armory Show, the rapid growth of U.S. cities, scientific discoveries and new insight into human psychology.

New York replaced post-WWII Paris as the world’s cultural capital, and the exhibit also examines the dialogue between U.S. and European artists as they experimented with progressive styles and techniques.

A special interactive allows visitors to explore The Armory Show – the 1913 International Exhibition of Modern Art – the largest group of modern art ever amassed in one location. The show introduced Americans to the avant-garde art of Picasso and Duchamp. It also featured a small number of revolutionary works that shocked visitors and altered the course of modern art in America and Europe.

Impressionism to Modernism: A Paradigm Shift in American Art runs from Sept. 27, 2014 through Jan. 11, 2015. The museum thanks exhibit sponsors Rennie Atterbury, Thomas and Lois Mayer, and Terry Knueppel. This program is partially supported by a grant from the Illinois Arts Council Agency.

The Peoria Riverfront Museum is the collaborative effort of eight organizations, with nearly 500 years of combined experience educating, entertaining, and supporting our diverse Peoria-area culture. Our mission is to inspire lifelong learning for all - connecting art, history, science, and achievement through collections, exhibitions, and programs. Visit PeoriaRiverfrontMuseum.org.

Festival of Lights East Peoria Folepi's Winter Wonderland

December 18, 2014 - 5-9 p.m. Sunday-Thursday; 5-11 p.m. Friday and Saturday
123 Par 3 Lane
East Peoria, IL 61611
309-676-0303
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OPENS THANKSGIVING NIGHT, NOV. 27, 2014!
RUNS NIGHTLY THROUGH DEC. 31

ADDRESS: 123 Par 3 Lane, East Peoria, IL  61611 (in VFW Post 2078 Park off Springfield Road)
ATTENTION GPS USERS: INPUT ADDRESS 801 SPRINGFIELD ROAD, WHICH IS LINCOLN SCHOOL. THE ENTRANCE TO WINTER WONDERLAND IS ABOUT ONE BLOCK PAST THE SCHOOL.
5-9 p.m. Sunday-Thursday; 5-11 p.m. Friday and Saturday 
All vehicles - $10, except for full-size charter buses which are $150 (cash, debit and credit cards accepted)

The drive-through electric park is the Festival of Lights' signature event! Folepi's Winter Wonderland features the majority of the Parade of Lights floats and many other lighted displays.

The Winter Wonderland entrance is off Springfield Road on Par 3 Lane. Tune your vehicle's radio to 107.9 for holiday music to accompany your drive!

The popular ski jumper display is featured in Winter Wonderland along with the Parade of Lights floats, and displays including lighted arches and circus animals, the Western town, Space Land, the Candy Cane Factory,Prehistoric Lane and more!

ILLINOIS CENTRAL COLLEGE GALLERIES FEATURE DRAWINGS, SCULPTURE AND COLLAGE BY LEN DAVIS

December 18, 2014 - ICC art galleries are Monday through Thursday, from 9:30 am to 7:30 pm and Friday from 9:30 am to noon.
Illinois Central College
1 College Dr.
East Peoria, IL 61635
309-694-5113
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Exhibits featuring drawings, sculpture and collages open on November 19 in two art galleries on ICC’s East Peoria Campus.

A second exhibit features collages by Len Davis and will be on display from November 19 through January 9 in the ICC Performing Arts Center Gallery. Davis grew up in the inner city of West Philadelphia next to Upper Darby, Penn. He was inspired to create his own art after a field trip in high school to see an exhibit by Marc Chagall. Davis attended East Carolina University in Greenville, N.C., where he majored in communication and minored in art. He now exhibits, lectures and conducts workshops across the country. He has rented and sold his work to TV shows such as Parks and Rec, Two and a Half Men, The Big Bang Theory, and Six Feet Under. He was also selected as one of the Artist Series for GAP Product (Red). One of his pieces is in the Cedar Rapids Museum of Art permanent collection.

            Normal hours of operation of the ICC art galleries are Monday through Thursday, from 9:30 am to 7:30 pm and Friday from 9:30 am to noon. Operation of the galleries may vary due to holidays or the academic schedule of Illinois Central College. For more information, visit ArtsAtICC.com or call 694-5113. 

It's an Old Fashioned Christmas

December 18, 2014 - Evening Performances Doors Open 6:00 P.M. Buffet 6:30 - 7:30 P.M. Show Starts 8:00 P.M. Sunday Brunch Performances Doors Open 12:00 Noon Buffet 12:00 - 1:00 P.M. Show Starts 1:30 P.M.
Conklin's Barn II Dinner Theatre
1451 Timberline Rd.
Goodfield, IL 61742
(309) 965-2545
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We're journeying back to the good old days in an all-new edition of our annual revue of holiday music, comedy and hilarious audience participation that will send your holiday spirit soaring, get your toes tapping and your belly shaking like a bowl full of jelly. Our multi-talented cast will make your spirit bright throughout the whole season! This year's edition takes us "down home" for an old-fashioned and hilarious country Christmas and then takes us back to the WWII era with a USA show for the troops. Our most popular show of the year, seats always fill up quickly, so book early for this perfect outing for family, friends and company parties! A guaranteed good time for all!  Wednesday evenings are added during December. No performance on Thanksgiving Day, Christmas Eve or  Christmas Day.
November 6-December 31, 2014

Free Wine Tasting

December 18, 2014 - 05:00PM to 07:00PM
Wines 'n More
151 S. Main St.
Morton, IL 61550
309-291-0899
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Come on in and enjoy wines from around the world! Every Thursday we will be tasting new unique wines. Wines will be available the duration of the week. Throughout the month we will be sampling some of our gourmet foods also!! Friend us on FACEBOOK!!

Karaoke

December 18, 2014 - 08:00PM to 12:00AM
Firehouse Pizza & Pub, East Peoria
East Peoria, IL 61611
(309) 698-9111
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Every Thursday night in the Pub, we have karaoke from 8pm-midnight! It is always a good time and is hosted by local radio personalities!! Come join us!!

Exhibit Opening: “The Art of Olof Krans: Painter of Bishop Hill”

December 19, 2014
Peoria Riverfront Museum
222 SW Washington St.
Peoria, IL 61602
Add to Itinerary

An exhibition celebrating the paintings of Illinois’ best-known folk artist, Olof Krans, who documented 19th century life in Bishop Hill, is opening to the public Oct. 11 at Peoria Riverfront Museum. “The Art of Olof Krans: Painter of Bishop Hill” was created in conjunction with the release of a new book on Krans and his work.
The show will feature more than 20 paintings, as well as several items of furniture and artifacts from the Bishop Hill Colony – some of which have never before been displayed in Peoria. Works include portraits of early settlers, views of the colony’s ocean voyage from Sweden, and scenes of early life in Bishop Hill.
Exhibited works come from the museum's permanent collection, a local private collection and the Bishop Hill Museum – which loaned two large-scale paintings including Krans’ famous self-portrait at age 70. The exhibition is curated by Kristan H. McKinsey.
The exhibit celebrates the release of a comprehensive survey – or catalogue raisonné – of Krans' work and his documentation of life in the Bishop Hill Colony. The fully illustrated hardcover book, The Art of Olof Krans: A Prairie Vision, 2014, is available for purchase in the museum store.
The book features essays on Krans’ legacy by Chicago art historian, Esther Sparks, and Martha Jane Downey, Superintendent of Bishop Hill State Historic Site.
It was published by Peoria Riverfront Museum and sponsored by Illinois folk art collector, Merle H. Glick, with additional funding from the American Folk Art Society and David Connor. Printing was made possibible by a grant from the Barbro Osher Pro Suesa Foundation of San Francisco, Calif.

1. "Manufacturing Traditions" Exhibit

December 19, 2014 - Closed on Sunday's and Holidays
Caterpillar Visitors Center
110 SW Washington
Peoria, IL 61629
(309) 675-0606
Add to Itinerary

The tradition of manufacturing at Caterpillar has stood the test of time for nearly 90 years. Many of the tried and true tools and processes that date back to the 1920s still have a home in the modern factories of the 21st century.

Our newest exhibit features a documentary-style film celebrating two employees each with 65 years of service to Caterpillar, a digital photo album containing more than 60 photos and more than 150 artifacts showcasing Caterpillar’s culture of safety, training, quality, employee recognition -- and the processes that ensure Caterpillar products are the best in the world.

We invite you to take a look at nearly 90 years of manufacturing at Caterpillar as we celebrate the thousands of production workers – the people who create the yellow iron – with our ‘Manufacturing Traditions’ exhibit, now through February 2015.

Exhibition opening: “Impressionism to Modernism: A Paradigm Shift in American Art”

December 19, 2014 - 10:00AM to 12:00PM
Peoria Riverfront Museum
222 SW Washington St.
Peoria, IL 61602
309-863-3006
Add to Itinerary

A new exhibit on the evolution of 20th century American art opens to the public at Peoria Riverfront Museum Sept. 27. “Impressionism into Modernism: A Paradigm Shift in American Art,” is a visual journey through the dramatic transformation of American art from the academic realism of the 1880s to the abstract expressionism of the 1940s and 50s.

Presented within the cultural and historical context of the time, the exhibit showcases modern art – mainly paintings, drawings and prints – made in the United States from 1880 to 1950 by American and foreign-born artists. The story focuses on artists working in Chicago, which became the cultural center for the Midwest following Great Chicago Fire of 1871.

Accordingly, the exhibit draws from several Illinois art collections, including those of Dr. William H. and Nancy Marshall, Peoria; Illinois State Museum, Springfield; Richard Norton Gallery, Chicago; and Clifford Law Offices P.C., Chicago.

Among the works included in the exhibit are two paintings which have never before been on public display, on loan from the Clifford Law Offices.

Curated by Kristan H. McKinsey, the exhibit also traces the impact on American art of pivotal historical events, including two world wars and the Great Depression, cultural revolutions such as the 1913 Armory Show, the rapid growth of U.S. cities, scientific discoveries and new insight into human psychology.

New York replaced post-WWII Paris as the world’s cultural capital, and the exhibit also examines the dialogue between U.S. and European artists as they experimented with progressive styles and techniques.

A special interactive allows visitors to explore The Armory Show – the 1913 International Exhibition of Modern Art – the largest group of modern art ever amassed in one location. The show introduced Americans to the avant-garde art of Picasso and Duchamp. It also featured a small number of revolutionary works that shocked visitors and altered the course of modern art in America and Europe.

Impressionism to Modernism: A Paradigm Shift in American Art runs from Sept. 27, 2014 through Jan. 11, 2015. The museum thanks exhibit sponsors Rennie Atterbury, Thomas and Lois Mayer, and Terry Knueppel. This program is partially supported by a grant from the Illinois Arts Council Agency.

The Peoria Riverfront Museum is the collaborative effort of eight organizations, with nearly 500 years of combined experience educating, entertaining, and supporting our diverse Peoria-area culture. Our mission is to inspire lifelong learning for all - connecting art, history, science, and achievement through collections, exhibitions, and programs. Visit PeoriaRiverfrontMuseum.org.

Festival of Lights East Peoria Folepi's Winter Wonderland

December 19, 2014 - 5-9 p.m. Sunday-Thursday; 5-11 p.m. Friday and Saturday
123 Par 3 Lane
East Peoria, IL 61611
309-676-0303
Add to Itinerary

OPENS THANKSGIVING NIGHT, NOV. 27, 2014!
RUNS NIGHTLY THROUGH DEC. 31

ADDRESS: 123 Par 3 Lane, East Peoria, IL  61611 (in VFW Post 2078 Park off Springfield Road)
ATTENTION GPS USERS: INPUT ADDRESS 801 SPRINGFIELD ROAD, WHICH IS LINCOLN SCHOOL. THE ENTRANCE TO WINTER WONDERLAND IS ABOUT ONE BLOCK PAST THE SCHOOL.
5-9 p.m. Sunday-Thursday; 5-11 p.m. Friday and Saturday 
All vehicles - $10, except for full-size charter buses which are $150 (cash, debit and credit cards accepted)

The drive-through electric park is the Festival of Lights' signature event! Folepi's Winter Wonderland features the majority of the Parade of Lights floats and many other lighted displays.

The Winter Wonderland entrance is off Springfield Road on Par 3 Lane. Tune your vehicle's radio to 107.9 for holiday music to accompany your drive!

The popular ski jumper display is featured in Winter Wonderland along with the Parade of Lights floats, and displays including lighted arches and circus animals, the Western town, Space Land, the Candy Cane Factory,Prehistoric Lane and more!

There's a Christmas Tree in Terminal C!

December 19, 2014 - 7:30pm, Friday, December 12th 2:00pm, Saturday, December 13th 7:30pm, Saturday, December 13th 7:30pm, Wednesday, December 17th 7:30pm, Thursday, December 18th 7:30pm, Friday, December 19th 2:00pm, Saturday, December 20th 7:30pm, Saturday, December 20th
Festival 56
316 S. Main Street
Princeton, IL 61356
(815) 879-5656
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by Dexter Brigham

Directed by Matthew C. Scott

December 12th through December 20th, 2014
Grace Performing Arts Center

On the tenth anniversary of its first production, we are happy to bring back our most popular holiday musical about four strangers stranded in an airport terminal on Christmas eve. Featuring everyone's holiday favorites, including "O Holy Night," "O Christmas Tree," and many, many more!

Individual Show Times & Dates

7:30pm, Friday, December 12th
2:00pm, Saturday, December 13th
7:30pm, Saturday, December 13th
7:30pm, Wednesday, December 17th
7:30pm, Thursday, December 18th
7:30pm, Friday, December 19th
2:00pm, Saturday, December 20th
7:30pm, Saturday, December 20th

Cast Members

Holly - Mariah Thornton
Ivy - Tayloir Pace
Rudy - Kyle Morr
Nick - Kyle Ralston

ILLINOIS CENTRAL COLLEGE GALLERIES FEATURE DRAWINGS, SCULPTURE AND COLLAGE BY LEN DAVIS

December 19, 2014 - ICC art galleries are Monday through Thursday, from 9:30 am to 7:30 pm and Friday from 9:30 am to noon.
Illinois Central College
1 College Dr.
East Peoria, IL 61635
309-694-5113
Add to Itinerary

Exhibits featuring drawings, sculpture and collages open on November 19 in two art galleries on ICC’s East Peoria Campus.

A second exhibit features collages by Len Davis and will be on display from November 19 through January 9 in the ICC Performing Arts Center Gallery. Davis grew up in the inner city of West Philadelphia next to Upper Darby, Penn. He was inspired to create his own art after a field trip in high school to see an exhibit by Marc Chagall. Davis attended East Carolina University in Greenville, N.C., where he majored in communication and minored in art. He now exhibits, lectures and conducts workshops across the country. He has rented and sold his work to TV shows such as Parks and Rec, Two and a Half Men, The Big Bang Theory, and Six Feet Under. He was also selected as one of the Artist Series for GAP Product (Red). One of his pieces is in the Cedar Rapids Museum of Art permanent collection.

            Normal hours of operation of the ICC art galleries are Monday through Thursday, from 9:30 am to 7:30 pm and Friday from 9:30 am to noon. Operation of the galleries may vary due to holidays or the academic schedule of Illinois Central College. For more information, visit ArtsAtICC.com or call 694-5113. 

An American Family Christmas

December 19, 2014 - Dec. 19 & 20 @ 7:30 PM, Dec. 21 @ 2:30 PM
Peoria Area Civic Chorale
360 N. Wilmor Rd
Washington , IL 61571
309-693-6725
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The refrain of I’ll Be Home Christmas takes on special significance this December 19, 20 at 7:30 p.m. and 21 at 2:30 p.m., as Dr. Joseph Henry returns to direct the Peoria Area Civic Chorale’s An American Family Christmas in the Performing Arts Center at Five Points Washington. Come discover the magic that makes An American Family Christmas such a wonderful way to celebrate the Christmas season. Enjoy spectacular arrangements of traditional carols and toe-tapping Christmas spirituals. Reminisce as we perform many of your favorite holiday songs including Breath of Heaven, I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day, Winter Wonderland, Let it Snow, It’s the Most Wonderful Time of the Year, and of course, I’ll Be Home for Christmas. Savor the rich, warm, and luxurious harmonies of Frank La Rocca’s setting of O Magnum Mysterium and enjoy a unique setting of Clement Clark Moore’s classic, ‘Twas the Night Before Christmas. Meet us at Five Points in December as we unwrap and share the gifts of beautiful music! 

Tab Benoit Kris Lager Band

December 19, 2014 - Doors: 6:00 PM / Show: 7:00 PM
Limelight Eventplex
8102 N. University St.
Peoria, Il 61615
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Lightwire Theater presents A VERY ELECTRIC CHRISTMAS

December 19, 2014 - DOORS OPEN AT 7PM. 8pm Show Time
Jay Goldberg Events and Entertainment
201 SW Jefferson Avenue
Peoria, IL 61602
217.278.7400
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Lightwire Theater’s A Very Electric Christmas follows the story of a young bird and his family as they begin their journey south for the winter.  Dancing toy soldiers, caroling worms and performing poinsettia’s light up the stage in a show that will brighten your holiday season.  Audiences of all ages will treasure this magical and captivating tale of family, friendship and hope set to timeless holiday hits, including Nat King Cole, Mariah Carey and Tchaikovsky.  Lightwire Theater is internationally recognized for their electroluminescent artistry, poignant story-telling and performs each night in complete darkness.

For more info on Lightwire Theater and A Very Electric Christmas, please check out : www.lightwiretheater.com

It's an Old Fashioned Christmas

December 19, 2014 - Evening Performances Doors Open 6:00 P.M. Buffet 6:30 - 7:30 P.M. Show Starts 8:00 P.M. Sunday Brunch Performances Doors Open 12:00 Noon Buffet 12:00 - 1:00 P.M. Show Starts 1:30 P.M.
Conklin's Barn II Dinner Theatre
1451 Timberline Rd.
Goodfield, IL 61742
(309) 965-2545
Add to Itinerary

We're journeying back to the good old days in an all-new edition of our annual revue of holiday music, comedy and hilarious audience participation that will send your holiday spirit soaring, get your toes tapping and your belly shaking like a bowl full of jelly. Our multi-talented cast will make your spirit bright throughout the whole season! This year's edition takes us "down home" for an old-fashioned and hilarious country Christmas and then takes us back to the WWII era with a USA show for the troops. Our most popular show of the year, seats always fill up quickly, so book early for this perfect outing for family, friends and company parties! A guaranteed good time for all!  Wednesday evenings are added during December. No performance on Thanksgiving Day, Christmas Eve or  Christmas Day.
November 6-December 31, 2014

The Fine Art of Hospitality Exhibit

December 19, 2014 - 01:00PM to 04:00PM
Peoria Historical Society
611 SW Washington
Peoria, IL 61602
309-674-1921
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Exhibit will highlight The Fine Art of Hospitality, the elegance of Jean Morron as hostess, exceptional service by her staff, dramatic architecture/design, and unique collection items used for entertaining in a Victorian era home at the Pettengill-Morron House Museum.

Weekly German Dinners and Entertainment at the Lindendhof

December 19, 2014 - 05:00PM to 08:00PM
German-American Central Society
7601 N. Harker Dr.
Peoria, IL 61615
309-691-7484
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The Lindenhof Restaurant is open to the public every Friday evening. Dinners are served from 5-8 pm. Dinners are $12.00 per plate for adult and $6.00 for children. Desserts are also available for $2.

German beers are on draft. We also have an assortment of wine by the glass and the bottle.

Weekly live entertainment from various local artists playing traditional German favorites.

Check our website www.peoriagermans.net or find us on Facebook under The Lindenhof of Peoria to see what is on the weekly menu.

Bar open until Midnight!

UPCOMING EVENTS


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