By Erika Johnson for Arts Excursions Unlimited
Arts Excursions Unlimited is an organization fueled by the dedication and interests of its members and participants, ensuring cultural enrichment and engagement in the arts for Greater Hazelwood residents.
This organization, co-founded by artist Edith Abeyta and Hazelwood community members, has a mission that is deeply rooted in the belief that arts and cultural experiences have the power to transform lives and communities.
Activities in the past have included visiting local art galleries and museums, attending theater performances and engaging in hands-on workshops.
The organization holds community meetings on the last Monday of each month. Community members come together to shape the organization's programming, ensuring that it aligns with their interests and needs. These meetings provide a platform for updates, discussions, excursions and upcoming community events. They also provide equitable job opportunities for members.
Attendance at these meetings is required for members to attend excursions. Meetings in the past have been held at the Three Rivers Village School (the old YMCA) with a light meal served before the meeting at 6 p.m. There will be no monthly public meeting in December as Arts Excursions Unlimited plans for changes in 2024.
What’s happening in December
One Thursday a month, Arts Excursions Unlimited offers ‘Art of Sound’, a workshop facilitated by music arts director Erika Johnson and CMU intern Will Scott. These workshops explore the creative potential of sound and art, using STEAM to create interactive, touch-sensitive artwork that creates music. It is recommended for ages 11-18, but all ages are welcome. For more information on the next workshop, please email me at
From Dec. 26-30, Arts Excursions Unlimited will visit Chicago by train to close out the year. Potential locations and activities include a bus tour, museums and cultural parks. All the spots are filled.
We also offer an array of small excursions and events throughout the month, including community shopping and monthly bingo, where you can buy groceries or enjoy a fun evening and possibly win some cash! Transportation is provided for both excursions and is available for nine people.
You can also plan to see creative and festive sculptures at Hazelwood’s Light Up Night. Sculptures will be hand made by Edith Abeyta and Arts Excursions Unlimited members at various sculpture fabrication sessions in Hazelwood. We plan to continue to evolve and grow while focusing on the greater Hazelwood community and its needs.
Erika Johnson is a Hazelwood-based writer, artist and owner of Beata Beatus Co. Catch her live set at Woods House on Dec. 15.