New BazaArt and Chalk It Up to Art event coming to O’Fallon, Illinois

The BazaArt and Chalk It Up to Art event is coming to downtown O’Fallon at 212 E. 1st St. Artists from 9 a.m.-9 p.m. on June 26 on will be participating in a chalk art contest as well as selling some of their art on a day filled with numerous activities adding to the bazaar feel.


Sarah Burton, the City of O’Fallon horticulturist and Vine Street Market coordinator, said she is helping oversee the event in collaboration with the Art Gecko Creative Studio co-owner Cory Hollerbach.


“Over the years, we have always heard that ‘O’Fallon needs more art. We want more art downtown.’ We decided this would be the perfect year to start that,” Burton said.


Hollerbach said this idea of a chalk art contest came from something her and her mother and business partner talked about six years ago. Hollerbach also said Burton helped come up with the BazaArt idea to combine the two.


“When we started this, we had the idea of doing a chalk contest to get the city involved. We had tried to go different avenues to get it done and kept hitting barriers. I finally came across Sarah Burton and she loved the idea and helped me get it going,” Hollerbach said.


Burton said the event will have various amenities, including food and drinks, music, an escape room and the art stands where various artists will sell their work.


“It starts with the Chalk It Up To Art event. Registration for that is from 8 a.m.-8:30 a.m. and artists will start drawing at 9 a.m. in the parking lot across from the Bike Surgeon and Art Gecko Creative studio. At the same time, the Vine Street Market will be going on and we will have live music going on there,” Burton said.


Burton said this event will have musical artists such as Mr. Deborah and Justin Jagler and will have numerous food options such as FlamentCo’s The Place and Burgers STL. 


Burton also said there will be 25 art vendors ranging from watercolor artists to painters, potters, hand-made clothing, jewelry and a tarot card reader.


Hollerbach said the Art Gecko Creative Studio will also have a stand outside the studio where some of the students will be showcasing and selling their work.


“All of our students have been encouraged to submit some art they have done and are willing to sell,” Hollerbach said. “They make a commission, but five percent of that will be donated to Randy’s Rescue Ranch.”


Hollerbach said she thinks the event will be a good opportunity for artists in the area to show off their work.


“Why not support local artists in our community as well as the surrounding communities to come out and spend the day creating art to show everybody?” Hollerbach said.


Jon Greenstreet, a co-owner of the Bike Surgeon bicycle shop, is one of the many food vendors participating in the event, selling items from the shop’s recently opened bar and restaurant.


“We have a number of sandwich options and ice cream — we’ll have the adult beverages that day from our 30 different microbrews and a couple signature drinks,” Greenstreet said.


Greenstreet said he hopes the event will be successful and gives people something to look forward to for years to come.


“This is about us as businesses giving back to the community. It gives an opportunity for everybody to get outside and enjoy the beautiful summer weather and see some cool art,” Greenstreet said.


Burton said she would like to keep working with Hollerbach and other businesses involved to try and improve on the event and hopefully make it annual.


“We’ll definitely regroup after the event is over and go through all the details and see how we can make it better. There’s definitely interest in the groups involved in the downtown district,” Burton said.


Find out more about the BazaArt and Chalk It Up to Art event on the event’s Facebook Page.

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