Rain floods Naperville Art League basement

 
 
Updated 2/20/2018 5:15 PM
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  • Erin Schneider, executive director of the Naperville Art League, cleans up the basement Tuesday after about an inch of water came in as heavy rains fell.

      Erin Schneider, executive director of the Naperville Art League, cleans up the basement Tuesday after about an inch of water came in as heavy rains fell. Bev Horne | Staff Photographer

The year is off to a wet and costly start for the Naperville Art League, which dealt with a flooded basement Tuesday in the midst of heavy rains.

About an inch of water coated the lower-level floor of the gallery at 508 N. Center St., less than a month after the building reopened from damage caused by a broken pipe.

Executive Director Erin Schneider and Art League volunteers spent the day sopping up water from the flooded basement and bringing up items so they wouldn't get damaged, including artwork by members and equipment used each September for the Riverwalk Fine Art Fair.

The flooding came as the region recorded roughly 2 inches of rain, which helped melt piles of snow and caused the National Weather Service to issue a flood warning.

A contractor was expected to continue the cleanup and begin drying out the space, which Schneider said is not covered by flood insurance.

"We have to raise the funds to pay for it," she said.

The classroom and gallery on the main floor are expected to remain open while the basement is repaired.

The building had to close earlier this year after a pipe burst in the ceiling Jan. 3 and caused water to seep in from above. The space was closed until Feb. 1 for $16,000 of repairs, including installation of new tile.

Insurance covered some of the cost, but Schneider said the league still needs to raise $9,000 to pay for the rest. The cost of Tuesday's basement damage is not yet known.

Schneider said the Art League plans to host a fundraiser in the spring to help pay for repairs. In the meantime, thanks to a newly redesigned website, she said anyone who wants to pitch in can make a donation online at napervilleartleague.com.

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