The new location of Illinois Art Station sits on over 2 acres of land that once provided trees for communities all over the Midwest. In 1890, Frank and Charles Custer founded the Custer Brothers Nursery at 100-102 and 101-103 E. Vernon Ave. In operation for over 100 years, the Custer Brothers Nursery (and the lifelong impact of their trees) are an integral part of the Town of Normal history.

Now home to IAS, the former nursery grounds will provide natural inspiration, scenic backdrops, and peaceful respite for our community. Children, youth, and their families will be able to explore the natural world while engaging with art making for a richer more fulfilling experience. 

As stewards of this historic property, IAS is dedicated to preserving the natural beauty and integrity of the grounds. In a nod to its original use, IAS will be putting down roots by planting new trees on the grounds and embarking on a native and sustainable landscape plan. This beautiful green space will allow IAS to develop unique and meaningful art experiences that will have a valuable and lasting impact on our community.

To make IAS outdoor art experiences a reality, we need your help! During the month of May we are raising funds to support our landscaping project. Here is how you can get involved:

Art Experiences Raffle

Enter to win 1 of three amazing art prizes:

A unique outdoor art experience led by an IAS Art Educator for you and up to 4 friends. You will have the chance to experience the IAS grounds and our unique brand of visual arts programming. The winner may select their preferred day and time from a list of available options in August and September of 2021. 

A Makers Pass good for 6 all inclusive drop-in visits to IAS in one calendar year. Stop in to try your hand at all IAS has to offer – Creation Stations, Open Itsy sessions, and Open Studio.

A Station Pass good for 6 drop-in Creation Station visits in one calendar year. Creation Stations offer a variety of engaging and dynamic art making that will inspire and challenge your creativity. Creation Stations change regularly so every visit is unique and exciting.

Purchase raffle entries here.

IAS Art Kits

Get outside and get painting with an IAS Art Kit! The Wandering Artist Kit will help you explore nature and your creativity with everything you need to complete your own nature-inspired masterpiece. Each kit includes:

  • A unique paint palette 
  • A quality, multi-purpose, paint brush (suitable for artists of all ages)
  • An array of paper 
  • Information and guidance created by IAS Art Educators
  • Guide for an inspiration nature walk to set you on the path of creation

Kits are $25 + shipping

Order your Wandering Artist Kit here.

For more information about Illinois Art Station and how you can support the IAS grounds and programming, contact Laura Jaster at