Fall festivals may be fewer than usual this year, but we’ve rounded up some of the lively offerings still happening that will brighten October and offer picture-worthy outings for families.
Oct. 24 to Nov. 1
New Lenox Village Commons
101 Veterans Parkway, New Lenox
Visit the New Lenox Village Commons to view a trail of scarecrows, each created by a local business or organization. Hosted by the village of New Lenox and the New Lenox Chamber of Commerce, the event offers a safe and distanced way to celebrate the season. On Oct. 31, from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., families that come through the walk will receive a bag of candy for every child.
Through Oct. 11
Downtown St. Charles
St. Charles’ Scarecrow Fest tradition has been downsized this year because of the COVID-19 pandemic. The newly named Scarecrow Stroll will focus on the scarecrow contest. It also will feature a scavenger hunt throughout downtown, a craft beer box featuring seasonal beers from St. Charles breweries, and several mini activities, including an event called Scarecrow In a Box. Scarecrows will be spread throughout the town to encourage social distancing while also supporting local businesses that will be paired with scarecrows.
6 to 9 p.m. Oct. 23
1S151 Winfield Road, Wheaton
Tickets: $7 per car
Bust out those costumes early and head to Cantigny for a unique event. The park is hosting a drive-thru car parade to give the kids another way to celebrate the season. Some of the attractions that can be seen as you drive through the park include Smokey the War Dog; KITT from “Knight Rider” and the “Ghostbusters” car; Medinah Shriners with mini choppers and cars; living history actors; Jack Skellington on stilts; show dogs; a French mime; Mr. and Mrs. Easter Bunny; and vehicles from the First Division Museum’s historic fleet. Live music will be provided by Vital Signs’ Mummy Band. After the parade, treat bags will be available for each child in your car. Tickets must be purchased in advance.
All kinds of fun activities are being planned for the whole family during the Princeton Chamber of Commerce Scarecrow Festival. Activities include face painting from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m., a petting zoo from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m., a Mutt Strut Dog Show at 10:30 a.m. (registration is from 9 to 10:30 a.m.), a cake walk at 11:30 a.m., pumpkin carving/decorating contest (pumpkins have to be at the Chamber at 9 a.m.), trick-or-treating at downtown businesses from 1 to 3 p.m., and a free movie at Apollo at 4 p.m. There may be traffic restrictions on Main Street during the day from Peru Street to the courthouse square.
Oct. 21 to 25
Sycamore Park Sports Complex, 435 Airport Road, Sycamore
Although this year’s Pumpkin Festival was canceled, the Sycamore Lions Club still will hold its decorated pumpkin contest to continue its more than 50-year tradition. This year’s theme is “Masked Pumpkins.” The event will be modified to a drive-thru version to minimize contact. The display area will be located by the Lions and Good Tymes shelters in the park. Pumpkin display setup will be from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Oct. 21 and 22, with drive-thru viewing on Oct. 23 through 4 p.m. Oct. 25. Judging of the pumpkins will take place Oct. 23.
Source: The Daily Chronicle