Throughout the year, Kemper Center holds several signature special events open to the public that contribute to the cultural environment in Kenosha and also serve as fund raising vehicles to support Kemper Center. These festivals and events are a destination for many in the Southeastern Wisconsin – Northeastern Illinois region. Over $100,000 was raised in 2010 through the hard work of volunteers, the generosity of sponsors and the support of the community.
Gambling for the Arts is a fun filled evening of gambling with “funny money” held in the early spring of each year benefiting the Anderson Arts Center. Gaming tables with professional dealers are brought in to create the atmosphere of a true Vegas-style casino. It’s all for fun and your winnings can be traded in for some great prizes!
Twilight Jazz is a free outdoor concert series sponsored by area businesses which take place on the Anderson Arts Center South Lawn. Held on Tuesday evenings during the summer, hundreds come to picnic and enjoy great jazz. Several food vendors offer their culinary delights to the crowd and a full bar is open for the concertgoers convenience. A 50/50 Raffle to support the Anderson Arts Center is held during each concert and the Arts Center Gift Shop is open offering special discounts.
Essen! Singen! Trinken! Tanzen! (eat, drink, sing, dance) – Oktoberfest at Kemper is a celebration of the Fall Harvest held in late September every year. The Anderson Arts Center South Lawn is transformed into a huge beer garden for the festival, which features freshly prepared traditional German food, entertainment provided by a 20 piece show band, fine German beer and wine, and of course, Gemütlichkeit! Hundreds come from near and far each year to enjoy “The Best Party in Kenosha!”
Haunted House and Ghost Tours of Kemper Center – Held in cooperation with the Teen Task Force of the Concerned Citizens Coalition on Alcohol and Other Drug Abuse, the Haunted House hosts thousands during its run each October. Held at the same time, Ghost Tours of Kemper Center is a professional theatrical event presented by JPM Productions that explores the legend of the haunting of Kemper by the spirit of a nun from Kemper Hall.
Acclaimed as the most popular Holiday Season activity in the area, Christmas at Kemper’s Gallery of Trees is the most successful of the Kemper signature events. Professionally decorated trees, wreaths, centerpieces and mantlepieces are sponsored by generous businesses and then sold to the public through auctions and raffles. The Durkee Mansion Historic Holiday presents the mansion decorated in Victorian holiday splendor for visitors and guests to enjoy.