Blue Island Mai Fest Arts and Crafts Fair Returns To Old Western

This article was contributed by a neighborhood member. The sights expressed below are the author’s have.

BLUE ISLAND, IL — Arts and crafts demonstrate followers will be delighted to know that the Blue Island Arts Alliance will keep Mai Fest 2023 Arts and Crafts Fair on Saturday, May perhaps 13, from 12:00 midday to 5:00 p.m.

The celebration will commence at the Blue Island Beer Company at 13357 Old Western Avenue, and operate north together Previous Western Avenue to Canal Avenue.

This year’s function builds on the results of past year’s exhibit, which was a person of the to start with important outings for artists and crafters right after the pandemic.

1 hundred sellers will established up along the route in storefronts, eateries, and on the street. The objects presented for sale are all handcrafted, the criteria for currently being in the clearly show. Merchandise will consist of every little thing from key chains to books. Buyers will come across jewelry, fashions, material creations, artwork, “monster-themed” merchandise, candles, soaps, skincare items, toys, knick-knacks, cards, and decorative merchandise, all exclusive.

Food items will contain sizzling sauces, pickles, coffee, candies and sweets, and cookies for persons – and their puppies. Tarot card readings will also be readily available.

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In addition to the Blue Island Beer Firm, restaurants and pubs alongside the route will take part in the function. Provided will be the Rock Island Public Dwelling, Olde Western Pizza Co., Entrance Row Blue Island, and the new B*U*B Café, scheduled to open quickly in the historic Jebens Hardware constructing.

The Blue Island Arts Alliance (BIAA) associates with the Streetz Artz Alliance (SAA) to organize the celebration.

BIAA, headed by Joe Leamanczyk, focuses on encouraging and supporting the nearby arts scene and the City of Blue Island. Mai Fest, named to honor the German roots of Blue Island, is the organization’s signature occasion.

“Blue Island has an exciting creative local community that we want people to working experience, and we want to continue to keep building that local community. As well as, we want to bring consciousness to the good enterprises on Outdated Western Avenue. Blue Island has a ton to give website visitors,” said Leamanczyk.

The SAA is a community of over 300 artists and craftspeople who participate in shows during Chicagoland. The group was commenced by John Streetz, an artist who also loves craft beers. He brings together his two passions by staging craft reveals in collaboration with craft breweries.

“Art fairs and craft breweries go actually properly collectively. Persons can chill out with a superior nearby craft beer in hand even though they stroll all over to pay a visit to the suppliers,” explained Streetz.

Streetz notes that all of the things for sale are hand-crafted merchandise. Some of the people have formed their have small organizations, actual “mom and pop” operations. Nevertheless, none of the products appear from faceless, professional corporations.

“It’s about the handcrafters, people today who labor above their perform, who really like their labor, who are happy to put out matters they built by themselves. And it is about supporting nearby organizations, like the breweries and dining establishments,” mentioned Streetz.

The Blue Island Beer Corporation (BIBC) was one particular of the very first breweries to perform with Streetz. The to start with tiny-scale exhibit evolved into activities like Mai Fest. It was the proprietor of the BIBC, Alan Cromwell, who related Leamanczyk and Streetz.

BIBC and its substantial, open area, referred to as the “WayBack Space,” is the repeated site for craft reveals, fests, concert events, fund-raisers, and other gatherings.

Claimed Cromwell, “It’s been exciting to resurrect a street good down listed here on Old Western Avenue. Craft breweries frequently turn into the cultural epicenters of communities they let for sharing a great deal of distinct, eclectic concepts. It’s excellent to get the job done with like-minded people today like our neighbors, the bars and restaurants, and with Joe and John.”

Confirmed artists and vendors incorporate:

333 Generates

Adara Selene Creations

Bewee and Snail

Major MIKE Soap Co.

Blacky Cat Creations

Blue Cap

Blue Island Arts Alliance



Interesting Cre8tions


D’Mood Kreationz

Coronary heart to Heart Collective

InSpirit Adornments

James R Pleasure Watercolors

Jonathan Grimm Artwork

Josefina Y Sus Delicias

JPs Que


KP’s Candy factory

Krick Woodshop

Legacy & Lore Toys

LeonMechelle Artist Studios

Libra Climbing By Yoali

Linda Horton Photography

Tiny Really like Affairs Boutique (Rites of Wellness LLC dba)

Loi Designs

My Crown My Glory

NiBu Layout

OG Apparel LLC

PaganBones Printing

Passionate Pleasures Sweets and Infused Treats

Paty’s crafts

Patys BS

Phoenix Climbing Art

Prairie Henna by Julie


Tarot by Ptah

Ten Cups Creations & Tarot

The Craftholes

The Lilac Lantern

Exceptional Creations by Rachel

Ursula Naturals

vada winter season


Very Strong Dice

Wanna Pickle Gourmet Food items

Witchorama LLC



“Working with these gifted and related folks – the artists and crafters, John Streetz, Alan Cromwell, and the people today of Blue Island – has introduced Mai Fest along to a prosperous put considerably faster than we imagined we would get to in only two decades. It is genuinely thrilling,” reported Leamanczyk.

Mai Fest is no cost, but a donation of $5 is welcome to guidance the BIAA.

This currently being the Midwest, temperature is generally an unpredictable factor, but only significant weather conditions that could bring about public basic safety concerns would improve Mai Fest options. The distributors set up inside of would nonetheless go on with the demonstrate.

“Now that spring is below, we just want folks to appear out and have a superior time,” mentioned Leamanczyk.

The sights expressed in this write-up are the author’s very own. Want to article on Patch?