A Publication of WTVP

Creativity may be timeless—it’s also trending. From education to business and beyond, more and more segments of society are citing creativity as one of the top skills in demand today. It’s the foundation of art and entrepreneurship, a guiding force in this rapidly-changing 21st century.

Do-it-yourself home projects are one outlet for creativity in which anyone can participate, and with the economy still sluggish, it’s become something of a national pastime. One of the most popular home projects is the refurbishing of old furniture, and with Annie Sloan’s Chalk Paint, it’s easy to pull off the vintage look you desire. With two area locations, Second Betty offers the complete line of Annie Sloan products—and even hosts a number of workshops to show you how to use them.

Creativity is driven by passion, and this issue is full of passionate people who are happily pursuing their creative dreams. Combining his love for food, hospitality, history and art, Hugh Higgins came up with Hearth, his new restaurant in Peoria Heights. Meanwhile, the old-time piano players highlighted in this issue are clearly passionate about “the grandfather of old-time music festivals,” which returns to East Peoria over Memorial Day Weekend.

As a boy, Ed Kaizer wanted to be a baseball player, a dream that was eventually overtaken by his passion for music. His life’s journey has taken him all over the world—usually accompanied by his wife and their own musical children. Still, Ed’s heart remains in Peoria, where “it’s always nice to get back home.”

The members of the Peoria Astronomical Society are an impassioned lot, from the director at large, who constructed an observatory in his own backyard, to the members who built the telescope at Jubilee State Park. Today, they share this passion with the entire community on Saturday nights at Northmoor Observatory.

By showcasing the creativity of our community, we hope your own artistic spark catches fire. That’s also the impetus behind IGNITE Peoria, an ArtsPartners-led “Big Bang Creativity Celebration” hitting the Civic Center this August. Its goals: to inspIre, to imaGine, to inNovate, to envIsion, to nurTure, to crEate. “IGNITE Peoria wants to celebrate and find the artist in all of us,” reads the recently-launched website. So mark your calendars for August 9th, check out for the details, and jump on board the creativity bandwagon! a&s