Sept. 27-29: Kids, apples and Oktoberfest
By Annie Alleman For Sun-Times Media September 26, 2013 11:40AM
Plano's Oktoberfest offers authentic German food and drink. | File photo
The Grundy County Corn Festival started a few days ago, but really gets underway this weekend.
Joliet and Oak Lawn each offer families a chance to enjoy free kids’ activities, Long Grove celebrates apples, a Plano Oktoberfest closes out the month of September and a Geneva fest serves as a fundraiser for childhood illnesses.
Grundy County Corn Festival
♦ Sept. 25-29
♦ Downtown Morris
♦ (815) 942-2676
The 65th annual Grundy County Corn Festival continues this weekend with a carnival, craft show and flea market, parade, Farm Fair, live music and lots and lots of food.
The Farm Fair — with events like a bake sale, produce sale, kiddie tractor pull, 4-H meat auction and the Morris Lions Club Chicken Dinner — runs throughout the Festival.
Activities include a Log Home Festival, featuring unique crafts and antiques; the Art Show at the Morris Library, train rides, petting zoo, pony rides, stagecoach rides, beer tent, Dave DiNaso’s Traveling World of Reptiles, the Corn Grain and Flower Show, the Hobby and Handicraft Show and live music.
There will be fireworks at 8:30 p.m. Saturday in Stratton Park.
The fest is capped with the Grundy County Corn Festival parade at 5 p.m. Sunday.
♦ Sept. 27-29
♦ Main Street, downtown Plano
♦ Tickets, $0-$7
♦ (630) 898-9242
Plano Oktoberfest brings the German with authentic German bands, German beers and wine, and German food.
The fest opens at 4 p.m. Friday and the official opening ceremony is at 6 p.m. The kitchen is open from 4:30 to 10 p.m. and German music is provided by DJ Fritzwilli, Karl-Heinz & Otto and The Hirsch Band. There will be a Chicken Dance contest at 8 p.m.
The fest opens at 11 a.m. Saturday with the kitchen churning out German delicacies like Schnitzel, roast pork, Kassler Rippchen, bratwurst, potato salad, sauerkraut and strudel from 11:30 a.m. to 10 p.m.
Sunday is Family Day and there is free admission all day. It begins at 11 a.m. and food is served from 11:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Don Reitsma provides music and the fest concludes at 6 p.m.
Donley’s Wild West Town
♦ Sept. 28-Oct. 27
♦ 8512 S. Union Road, Union
♦ Tickets, $16
♦ (815) 923-9000
The fall festival runs from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on weekends Sept. 28 to Oct. 27. In addition to the pumpkin patch, guest can take a family-friendly spooky ride through the old mine tunnel. Kids can get a pumpkin from the Chief’s private pumpkin patch, and then paint them.
Singers can take center stage at Clayton’s Sasparilla Saloon and sing Halloween classics with Ms. Lorrieann’s Karaoke. Fall-themed treats will be available for purchase, and the regular activities will be available also.
Joliet Family Fun Fest
♦ Sept. 28
♦ Silver Cross Field, Joliet
♦ Tickets, $0-$2
♦ (815) 724-1142
Come out for a day of fun activities for your family from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday at Silver Cross Field in Joliet.
Children 15 and under are free accompanied by an adult; the cost is $2 for those over age 16. Activities include Touch-a-Truck, games, food, tractor rides, child fingerprinting and IDs, car seat safety checks, costumed characters, community booths, local entertainment and live music.
Pumpkins for a Cure Festival
♦ Sept. 28
♦ Kane County Courthouse lawn, 100 S. Third St., Geneva
♦ Tickets, $5
This family-oriented event benefits the Zellmer Childhood Disease Foundation and runs from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday.
Grown-ups can get started early with the Trick-or-Trot 10K run at 7:30 a.m.
There will be children’s activities, carriage rides, balloon animals, a craft table, face painting, a haunted hayride, pumpkin carving, a petting zoo and music from Miss Carol and Macaroni Soup.
There will be a children’s story time with a live owl demonstration from Stillman Nature Preserve and appearances by Ozzie from the Kane County Cougars and professional pumpkin carver Marc Solomon.
The second annual Harvest Taste — Sweet & Savory event will take place on The Little Traveler front lawn. Sample each restaurant’s fall-inspired desserts and savory bites and cast your vote for the best-tasting Sweet and Savory bite. Tickets cost $25 for 10 tastes and a bottle of water.
Long Grove Apple Fest
♦ Sept. 27-29
♦ Old McHenry Road and Robert Parker Coffin Road, Long Grove
♦ Tickets, $5
♦ (847) 634-0888
Held from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. each day, the Long Grove Apple Fest features hayrides, live music, pony rides, kiddie rides and face painting. The town’s restaurants and specialty shops will feature a wide variety of apple-inspired treats.
Several bands and local dance schools will perform throughout the weekend.
Fall Fun Fest
♦ Sept. 29
♦ Children’s Museum in Oak Lawn, 5100 Museum Drive, Oak Lawn
♦ (708) 423-6709
At this free outdoor event, kids can listen to Little Miss Ann perform, and the first 500 kids receive free pumpkins. The Oak Lawn Oak Lawn Professional Firefighters Association I.A.F.F. will have a duck pond. Dancers from Priscilla’s School of Dance will perform along with other entertainment.