Aurora Cultural Arts District

“They’re very prestigious grants, so they bring a lot of attention in the nationwide arts community, and the projects that they do really help to create that sense of place we’re trying to achieve here,” Weil said. “And the events they put on draw a lot of people to the district…so this would allow us to do that on a really large scale.”

“It’s definitely a great opportunity for people to come down to the district to discover the theaters and galleries,” said Tracy Weil, executive director of the Aurora Cultural Arts District. He took over as the main organizer for the tree lighting three years ago. “We’re just trying to create awareness, fun and an overall sense of community.”

“This is definitely a new dynamic,” said Robards, who moved her studio from Denver to Aurora last year. She relocated after landlords in an up-and-coming neighborhood decided they could make more money from a different tenant and kicked her out. “Art organizations go in when nobody wants to be there, and then the arts get kicked out when everyone wants to be there”