Arts and Culture

Peoria Public Radio File Photo

A 31-foot tall Abraham Lincoln sculpture is heading to Washington.

Peoria and East Peoria students can now visit the Peoria Riverfront Museum for free.

David Alan Badger via Facebook

David Alan Badger says he's made the state of Illinois "the adventure of his life."

Eureka College Theatre

This week on Out and About, Jenn Gordon is joined by Holly Rocke to talk about Eureka College Theatre’s online production of “The Visit.” The tragic and poignant tale by Friedrich Dürrenmatt asks the question, “Is Justice for Sale?"  The performance will be available to stream November 12-15. For more information or to request a FREE viewing code email

Heartland Festival Orchestra

This week on Out and About, David Commanday joins Jenn Gordon to talk about Vivaldi’s brilliant Four Seasons reimagined by cinema composer Max Richter, plus a tango twist with Piazzolla’s The Four Seasons of Buenos Aires. The performance features rising star Francisco Fullana on violin, and Lidia Kaminska on bandoneon. The concert will take place on October 31 at Five Points Washington, with limited seating available.

Courtesy Mike Bailey

You may have noticed several new carved limestone pieces adorning the Peoria Heights Sculpture Walk along Prospect Avenue and the Rock Island Trail.

Central Illinois Ballet

This week on Out and About, artist director Rebekah von Rathonyi and principal dancer Hannah Ray join Jenn Gordon to talk about telling the haunting tale of Dracula through dance.

Peoria Symphony Orchestra

This week on Out and About, Jenn Gordon is joined by Maestro George Stelluto and Principal Trumpeter Sarah Carrillo to talk about the PSO’s upcoming concert "Merry Pranks," set to air on Oct. 24 on WTVP’s Create Channel 47.4.

(AP Photo/Ben Curtis)

Craig Moore wasn’t sure how the public would respond after his record store was closed for 2 1/2 months this spring due to the state’s coronavirus lockdown.

Peoria Art Guild

This week on Out and About, Jenn Gordon talks with Alexander Martin, local artist and one of the founders of the newly formed Peoria Guild of Black Artists. Alexander shares how the guild got started and quickly gained momentum, leading to a curated show at the Peoria Art Guild entitled “A New Renaissance”. The show will remain open through October 30. For more information visit the Peoria Art Guild.

Courtesy Preston Jackson

Artist Preston Jackson is on a mission to create three busts memorializing the late civil rights leader C.T. Vivian.

Peoria Riverfront Museum

This week on Out and About, Bill Conger joins Jenn Gordon to talk about the new exhibit at the Peoria Riverfront Museum. "GUITAR: The Instrument That Rocked The World" takes visitors of all ages on a fascinating and engaging exploration of the art, science, sound, history and pop culture behind the world's most popular instrument! The exhibit features a unique collection of more than 70 instruments - ranging from the rare and antique to the wildly popular and innovative - along with performance video, models and more.

Big Picture

This week on Out and About, Doug and Eileen Leunig (founders of Big Picture) and Trent Miles, join host Jenn Gordon to talk about “Giving Voice” an online magazine featuring articles, videos, and podcasts submitted by youth in our community.  The students will work with a professional writer and mentor to hone their writing skills, and they will be paid for published articles. To find out more about this initiative visit Giving Voice.

'WCBU & WGLT Present' Set To Debut In October

Sep 25, 2020

WCBU and WGLT Present is a limited, short-run series featuring cultural arts organizations throughout Central Illinois who are unable to perform in front of a live audience because of COVID-19 restrictions on public gatherings. 

Contemporary Art Center of Peoria

This week on Out and About, Preston Jackson and William Butler join Jenn Gordon to talk about their joint exhibit, Walking the Line, which celebrates the 25th anniversary of the first art exhibition in the gallery. Preston Jackson is the founder of the Contemporary Art Center, and William Butler serves as the Executive Director.

Peoria Riverfront Museum

Internationally renowned wildlife photographer Tom Mangelsen gave a retrospective of his work and life experiences Thursday night as part of a virtual lecture presented by the Peoria Riverfront Museum and Wildlife Prairie Park.

On this week’s episode of Out and About, George Stelluto and Mae Gilliland Wright join Jenn Gordon to talk about the Peoria Symphony Orchestra’s shrewdly innovative approach to moving forward with their 123rd Season which includes access to concerts through an expanding partnership with WTVP. Learn more at Peoria Symphony Orchestra.

Courtesy of the Media History Digital Library / University of Wisconsin-Madison /

A 97-year-old silent film once thought lost forever was recently rediscovered amidst a collection of old film reels donated by a Peoria man to the Chicago Film Archives.

Arts Partners

On this week’s episode of Out and About, Jenn Gordon talks with John and Jeff Heintzman about the 9 new sculptures featured along Washington Street. The Walk is open year round and offers art inspired by music, math, nature an more. In lieu of public tours, John Heintzman narrates a video tours providing an in depth look at the artists and art featured on this year’s Sculpture Walk Peoria. For more information or to take the video tours visit Sculpture Walk Peoria.

Tim Shelley / Peoria Public Radio

It's clear Peorians have strong opinions on the Columbus statue in upper Laura Bradley Park after the park district listened to more than 90 minutes of public comments at a forum on the monument's future on Wednesday.

Peoria Riverfront Museum

On this week’s episode of Out and About, Bill Conger joins host Jenn Gordon to talk about the current exhibit at the Peoria Riverfront Museum, Ken Hoffman: 50 Years in Peoria. Hoffman arrived in Peoria in 1969, accepting the position of professor of painting at Bradley University. Beginning with a mural work painted in 1970, this exhibition explores the 50-year artistic journey which has realized these humorous, unmistakable, and often very large-scale paintings of animals in suits.

Breanna Grow / WCBU

This is the second of two stories exploring how the Peoria Riverfront Museum has adapted to the COVID-19 pandemic. This story was produced in partnership with the Pulitzer Center. For more stories about the effect of COVID-19 on museums, please visit the Prairie State Museums Project at

Tim Shelley / Peoria Public Radio

The man behind the large African animal sculptures placed around Peoria last summer now wants to create a permanent, free art installation for the community.

Tim Shelley / Peoria Public Radio

Washington is now a Walldogs mural community.

Peoria Art Guild

On this week’s episode of Out and About, Lisa Nelson Raabe joins Jenn Gordon to talk about the influences and techniques which inspired “Still Point”, a collection of her work now on display through July 31 at the Peoria Art Guild. Large in scale, yet fine and fragile, the work follows her ideas into visible constructions that are translucent, elegant and contemplative. Learn more at the Peoria Art Guild.

Morton Chamber of Commerce

This week on Out and About, Leigh Ann Brown of the Morton Chamber of Commerce joins Jenn Gordon to talk about the importance of supporting local businesses and artists. Fourth Friday takes place the Fourth Friday of every month in the heart of downtown Morton and provides an outdoor walk-about environment featuring a variety of artisans, musicians, shopping, and outdoor and online activities.
For more information see the Arts Partners Events Calendar.


Peoria Riverfront Museum

This story was produced in partnership with the Pulitzer Center. For more stories about the effect of COVID-19 on museums, please visit the Prairie State Museums Project at

It’s a Monday afternoon with nothing to do. Your other plans have been rained out, so you decide to pay a visit to the Peoria Riverfront Museum.

Five Points Washington

This week on Out and About Jenn Gordon talks with Mike Schulte from Five Points Washington about their outdoor summer concert series, Five Points Fridays. The series runs through October 16th and will include acoustic performances by Pocket Mouse, Neal Bowling, Kick-in & Pickin, Top 4D and Chase Sieting. Tonight's show features Black Velvet. Gates open at 5:30pm and the performance will start at 6pm. Local food and drink will be available for purchase on site.

Peoria Art Guild

The Peoria Park District, in conjunction with the respective local organizations, canceled several of this year's Riverfront events as restrictions on crowd sizes and other social distancing guidlines continue to stay in place.

Jeff Watts/American University via AP

The murders of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, and Ahmaud Arbery have renewed conversations about systemic racism and inequality in the United States. This is a time white people can listen and learn from the lived experience of black Americans. A Peoria bookseller is trying to help people do just that.