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Come see live eagle demonstrations 10 a.m. til 2 p.m. every Saturday in January at the Alton Visitor Center. See a live bald eagle up close and personal! Ask and learn about their species and habitats. Then, grab your official All Around Alton Eagle Watcher's Guide as you journey out along the Meeting of the Great Rivers National Scenic Byway to see eagles in their natural habitat. Free! For more information, call 1-800-ALTON-IL or go to www.VisitAlton.com.
It is time again for the Great River Road Run. Race your way to victory with the choice of a 2 mile route or a 10 mile route out and back on the Meeting of the Great Rivers National Scenic Byway, beginning in Alton. It's the most scenic run you'll ever make as you race to the finish along the Mississippi River and the majestic limestone bluffs.
One of the largest free outdoor holiday light displays in Northern Illinois, the Festival of Lights, returns with dazzling displays that will delight both adults and children. This signature winter event is a drive-through of more than one mile of spectacular lighted displays, many of which are animated, and are illuminated by tens of thousands of bulbs. Staged at Aurora's gem, Phillips Park, the festival will be open from 5 - 9 pm Sunday through Thursday and 5 - 10 pm Friday and Saturday.
Pumpkin Weekends bring the spectacular fall season to life with autumn festivities amid the spectacular fall colors. Enjoy seasonal craft-making, harvest decor and pumpkin stories galore! Kids can roll around in the giant corn crib and enjoy unlimited rides on the train, ponies, hay wagon and carousel. Experience a pumpkin paddle, trick-or-treating and a costume contest. It’s all the best of autumn in one place! Weekends in October and Columbus Day (Oct. 10), 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. each day.
Celebrate Fall at Abbey Farms Pumpkin Daze! This old-fashioned farm boasts a variety of activities and events for all ages. Who is ready for the Human Hamster Ball Experience? New attractions abound at Abbey Farms Pumpkin Daze this year! Just a few of the fun activities included with the price of admission are tractor hay rides and log balancing beams, a pirate ship imagination adventure and two 200’ foot long zip lines, the all ages jumping pillow and adult pedal go-karts and Kane County’s largest corn maze! New for 2016 (additional cost): Strap yourself into the air-filled Human Hamster Ball experience, take aim with the corn cannon challenge, run a lap on the new bouncing cow train ride and grab a craft beer and or pumpkin from the pumpkin patch! Lastly, be sure to visit our new Pine Tree Café & country store & bakery for a dozen of our famous Apple Cider donuts on your way out!
All aboard! Take a magical ride on the Holiday Express train. You’ll see Lake Gregory and Blackberry Farm in all its holiday glory amid the twinkling lights and songs of Christmas. Back in the village, enjoy storytelling of the classics, festive decorations, reindeer food bar, hay wagon rides and a visit with Santa! And don’t miss the famous Adventure Playground – decorated as Candy Cane Village! It all happens on 8 magical days in December. Admission is just $5 per person. Tasty concessions with seasonal favorites and drinks (non-alcoholic) available for purchase. Fridays: 5 - 8 pm. Saturdays: 2 - 6 pm. Sundays: 2 - 6 pm. Pre-purchase tickets online and avoid lines at the ticket window.
March 16, 2015 - Bluegill Music Festival will lunch its inaugural event on July 4, 2015 for a one-day festival packed with some of country music's hottest acts. The all-day festival will be complete with Southern Illinois' largest fireworks display, along the shores of the Rend Lake Dam, in Benton, IL. The lineup includes Eli Young Band, LoCash, Clayton Anderson and more exciting acts to be announced. Tickets will go on sale this Friday, March 20th and can be purchased at www.bluegillfest.com and at Black Diamond Harley Davidson. Drawing fans from around the country, including Illinois, Missouri, Kentucky, Tennessee and Indiana, the festival is at the intersection of some of the nation's most dedicated country music fans. Bluegill Music Festival will feature nationally recognized BBQ vendors from around the country. Interactive entertainment for fans will also include activations, like: bags, washers, bubble soccer, Illinois longest slip n' slide, helicopter rides from Black Diamond Harley Davidson, a mechanical bull, a kids area with a large inflatable slide and the "Bluegill Lagoon", featuring a 60 x 100' VIP beach, with cabanas, private wading pools & lounge area. Additionally, Southern Illinois' largest fireworks display will begin at 9:30pm, and is free for all guest.
Halloween fun awaits families at Brookfield Zoo’s annual Boo! at the Zoo celebration. The popular daytime event, presented by Fisher-Price, features a Costume Parade, Costume Showcase, professional pumpkin-carving demonstrations, not-so-scary games and activities, special animal Zoo Chats, and haunted hayrides. For more information, visit www.CZS.org or call (708) 688-8000.
Little ghost and goblins of all ages are sure to have a howlin' good time! Our not-so-scary and fun-filled event has something for the entire family to enjoy, from the "Crazy Maize" corn maze, to a spin on the "Creepy Cowboy Carousel", to professional pumpkin carving, and more.
Annual Home Garden & Business Expo featuring over 40 exhibitors and 2 full days of "How To" demonstrations. Breakfast and lunch available, hourly door prizes, blood screenings on site and register for the "Grand Prize!"
The Christkindlmarket is a four-week, open-air market modeled after the famous Nuremberg Christmas market dating back to 1545. The market offers shopping opportunities and serves as a winter wonderland meeting place for family and friends. Plus, enjoy German delicacies like brats, goulash and potato pancakes while you’re there.
The Chicago Flower & Garden Show brings springtime to winter with its 20 lush gardens, beautiful and fragrant flowers, trees and other plants allowing “newbie” gardeners and experts alike to experience the latest the industry has to offer. Top garden builders create fresh designs, while nationally-known presenters teach visitors how to get that professional garden look. It's all happening at the Chicago Flower & Garden Show. Be among the first to see new plant varieties for 2017 and experience the newly-redesigned Navy Pier. Enjoy art, free kids activities, wine tastings, cooking demos from noted chefs, and a shopper's paradise of garden gadgets, jewelry, and more. Special rates available for groups.
Kick off the holiday season and create your special memories on The Magnificent Mile! The BMO Harris Bank Magnificent Mile Lights Festival, the nation’s largest evening holiday celebration, jump starts the holiday season with a full day of family friendly activities, concerts by top musical artists and the best holiday shopping. The day’s excitement culminates with a grand evening parade down Michigan Avenue illuminating one million lights on 200 trees. The parade concludes with a grand finale fireworks show over the Chicago River.
Celebrating our 20th birthday this year, our Halloween Parade is known throughout the nation for its outlandish costumes, creative programming, and entertaining parade. With over 2,000 entries into our annual Costume Contest, be sure to join the crowd and see Chicago’s most amazing display of costumes. Your 2016 Northalsted Halloween Parade comes to Chicago’s Boystown neighborhood on Monday, October 31st – Halloween Night!
Meet at the reconstructed Woodhenge to hear an explanation of the discovery, form end function of this post-circle sun calendar. Arrive by 6:45 a.m.
The Cache River Wetlands offers great opportunities for eagle watching, as well as spotting other birds. The Cache River Wetland Center provides resource and identification materials to help you spot eagles and other birds in the area and along the rivers. They will provide maps and directions to the viewing station for the nest just off Illinois Route 37 off Perks road and south of the visitor's center.
The NIU Huskies Football Team will play five home games at Huskie Stadium during the 2016 season. The Home Season opener is Saturday September 17th vs San Diego State. The season continues with Western Illinois on Saturday, September 25th and Central Michigan on Saturday, October 15th. Homecoming is October 22nd vs. the Buffalo Bulls and the final game at Huskie Stadium is Tuesday November 1st. NIU will also be playing a "Home" game at US Cellular Field on November 9th vs Toledo. See "Huskie Chi-Town Showdown" for more information on that event.
Starting the day after Thanksgiving and continuing through the month of December. Come experience Du Quoin Tourism’s transformation of the Du Quoin State Fairgrounds into a magical place with lights and decorations. The event features a 1 1/2-mile drive through over $250,000 worth of lighted displays as well as decorated trees, entertainment, food, crafts and visits with Santa in the Expo Hall. The light trail opens nightly from 5:30 – 9:30 p.m., and the Expo Hall will be open on the second and third weekends in December from 5:30 — 9:30 p.m. The Expo Hall features Santa’s train ride and Santa’s Workshop.
Calling all Volkswagens! Funfest for Air-Cooled VW celebrates all eras of the iconic VW June 2-4, 2017. With thousands of Beetles, Buses, Dune Buggies, Ghias and more on display for 3 full days, this is on every VW-lover’s bucket list! Highlights include Celebrity Choice Awards, Spring Swapfest swap meet, Slalom races, Expert Seminars, VW club activities, tons of VW vendors, Friday night Fun Run road tour, a Saturday night concert, MY Garage Museum and much more! For more information or to register, please check out our website: www.funfestacvw.com/
Join us in Effingham, IL for the Largest Corvette Party in the World! Corvette Funfest is 4 days full of Corvette FUN, with thousands of Corvettes flocking to Mid America Motorworks’ corporate campus in Effingham, IL. Highlights include Celebrity Choice Awards, a Fall Swapfest swap meet, Expert Seminars, tons of Corvette Vendors, Special Display Corvettes, a Saturday night concert, and much more! For more information or to register, please check out our website: www.corvettefunfest.com
Take a magical trip to a winter wonderland of twinkling lights and holiday beauty at the Chicago Botanic Garden when we kick off the holiday season! Outside, 750,000 lights sparkle and welcome you and your family to the Garden's wonderland. Inside the Regenstein Center, a 10,000-square-foot exhibition of miniature trains winds over bridges, under trestles, past waterfalls, and through more than 80 mini-replicas of Chicago's favorite landmarks. Paul Busse, designer of the Model Railroad Garden, created this amazing exhibition exclusively for the Garden's holiday celebration.
Together, adults and children can explore cool things about how plants connect to science, art, history, and culture. Each program includes a variety of hands-on activities and projects, as well as opportunities to bring the Garden home. Programs run from November through April on Saturdays.
The 7,500-square-foot “Model Railroad Garden: Landmarks of America” exhibition at the Chicago Botanic Garden features trains running on 1,600 feet of track, for train and garden enthusiasts to enjoy the delightful sights and sounds of the miniature trains traversing high and low through tunnels, across bridges and around buildings.
Get your kicks at the Great Godfrey Maze! It’s time to go cruising to the finish line as you race your way through two separate mazes cut into a 7-acre cornfield. You may have to yield to oncoming traffic or hit a few detours along the way, but everyone gets a little lost sometimes. Plus, ride on the car train, check out the zip line or play around in the corn crib. Go to www.GodfreyIL.org and check the calendar for special movie nights, festivities and the haunted maze! In October, the ghosts and goblins will come out after dark. Admission is $6 for 12 and up, $4 for ages 6 through 11 and children 5 and under are free. For more information, call (618) 466-1483.