• Elgin Arts and Culture
  • Hemmens Cultural Center a favorite venue for seeing stars up close since 1969                 

  • Arts & Culture

    Elgin is an artistic and cultural center for the Fox Valley region. Elgin recognizes the importance of arts and culture and the positive impact they have on the quality of life. There are numerous arts and culture organizations in Elgin from community theatre and choral groups to the highly acclaimed Elgin Symphony Orchestra.

    The community's commitment to arts and culture is demonstrated by the Elgin Artspace Lofts. This arts facility includes 55 units of affordable space where artists live and work.  Plus there is a 6,000 square foot retail space for art-friendly businsses.  The lofts are an adoptive resuse of a historic Sears and Roebuck store in downtown Elgin.


  • The Elgin Symphony Orchestra is unmatched for quality music and memorable cultural experience. The ESO brings world-class, big city entertainment without the hassles. Named "Orchestra of the Year" an unprecedented four times by the Illinois  Council of Orchestras, the ESO is now in its 67th season. The ESO is also known for its innovative student educational programs and outreach efforts, including the Musician Care Program at local hospitals.

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  • Elgin Signature Events

  • Nightmare on Chicago Street is Midwest’s largest and most exciting Halloween festival for adults. The event turns eight downtown city blocks of Elgin, IL into a scene of apocalyptic chaos worthy of any film set, complete with real flipped cars, barrels of oozing toxic waste, interactive screening stations, military vehicles and piles of body bags. The festival works with teams of actors, dancers and performers to interact directly with our festival goers to add even more authenticity to the event. Major local live bands, costume contests, celebrity guest appearances and freak show performers keep the crowd entertained and our food and drink vendors keep them well catered for (because even the apocalypse needs a good beer and burger stand!)

  • The annual Historic Bluff City Cemetery Walk in Elgin has been a tradition since 1987. The event provides insight into Elgin’s unique history through actors that portray key departed elginites. The Elgin Area Historical Society organizes this much-anticipated event that attracts over three hundred people a year. The cemetery walk takes place on the fourth Sunday of September. Visitors are taken on a 90 minute guided tour through the scenic Bluff City Cemetery to grave sites of former residents, portrayed by actors in period costumes. Visitors will also learn about fascinating lives and various cemetery symbolism all while strolling the expansive cemetery grounds. 


  • Visit the Elgin Area Convention and Visitors Bureau (CVB)
    to learn more about Art & Culture Events in Elgin

     

      CVB Art & Culture Events  

  • The City of Elgin has been actively involved in promoting the arts in the city for many years and continues to be a champion for events such as Art & Soul on the Fox. The development of the Riverside Promenade, which is now the site of Art & Soul on the Fox, was the result of the city's vision to create a large urban park along the Fox River. Through the collaborative effort of Elgin's Art for All art league and the City of Elgin, Art & Soul on the Fox has continued to evolve over the years to return to its roots as a fine art show that is affordable for our artists and Free to the public! The event has been built upon a long heritage begun by Elgin's chapter of the American Association of University Women.

  • The Elgin Development Group Enhancing Elgin committee OpenElgin is a free public tour that offers behind-the-scenes access to Elgin buildings.  Explore the hidden gems and architectural treasures of Elgin’s diverse neighborhoods —all for free.

    Have you ever walked by a building and thought, "I wish I could see what's inside?" Now you can. Tour repurposed mansions, private offices, and breathtaking sacred spaces. Not only is it a feast for the eyes, but you'll learn about Elgin's rich architectural history. 

  • The Annual Historic Elgin House Tour is an educational event that offers something for everyone. There’s architecture, history, home remodeling, interior decorating, gardening and more. The interior tours of the homes are guided and interpreted. The houses can be toured in any order. If you participate, wear comfortable shoes and allow yourself the full day to see all of the homes.

  • The Elgin RibFest has operated for the past 20 years and draws approximately 5,000-6,000 attendees per day. Music food, drinks, family fun - need we say more?