On October 26, 2019, ART Inc. founders Jonathan and Nikki Romain will team up with Silvia Garcia Rojas and Matt George to host a dynamic evening celebrating this annual Mexican tradition of art, culture and life at the Romain Arts & Culture Community Center. It's the first of what will become an annual event paying tribute to a Peoria resident who has contributed greatly to the community.
This year’s celebration highlights the life and contributions of Glen Barton, a passionate supporter of education initiatives in the Peoria area. “He was the driving force behind Quest Charter Academy and a tireless leader and supporter of the Peoria Zoo, Peoria PlayHouse, WTVP and Illinois Central College,” says Nikki Romain. "Since his passing, the Barton Family Foundation has continued to give back, including the Every Student Initiative at the Peoria Riverfront Museum"—which allows every Peoria Public Schools student (K-8) to visit the museum each year.
In the Day of the Dead tradition, there will be an altar dedicated to Barton, while guests can memorialize family members and friends who have passed away within the past year. The evening will feature a special performance by the Peoria Folklore Ballet: Las Guarecitas, while guests enjoy signature cocktails, tequila tastings and authentic Mexican food prepared by Casa de Arte and Panaderia Ortiz Bakery. And, of course, guests are encouraged to dress in full theme attire to snag the best costume award!
VIP guests will be treated to a traditional Catrina makeup session with professional make-up artists Christina Cortez Murillo (Slay by Christina), Dana Williams (Sapphire Salon Studios), Andraia Pankey (Elle & Elle Salon) and Erika Ray. “El Día De Los Muertos is one of the most well-known festivities in Mexico—full of color, taste and tradition,” adds Silvia Garcia Rojas. “People need to come to the event to see what it is and what it means so they can understand and get closer to my culture.” PS