Fall festivals are often celebrations of the harvest on the weekend of Oct. 10-13,2013 in the Chicago area. The second weekend of Oct. is typically a good season to enjoy the fall colors and the crisp, fresh air. Festive gatherings are found in Chicago's Andersonville neighborhood, Aurora, Batavia, Long Grove and Marengo.
Chicago: Andersonville Arts Weekend features a variety of events celebrating the arts Fri.-Sun., Oct. 10-13, in the Andersonville neighborhood of Chicago.
Aurora: MercyFest is hosted by Our Lady of Mercy Parish at 701 S. Eola in Aurora on Thurs.-Sun., Oct. 10-13. The family friendly community festival features food, carnival rides, music and children's activities. Main stage entertainment includes The Hat Guys on Fri., 7th Heaven on Sat. and Eddie Korosa Polka Band on Sun.
Batavia: DANK Fox Valley Oktoberfest is a German celebration being held Fri.-Sun., Oct. 11-13 in downtown Batavia (N. Island and Houston). Festivities include German music, German food and a bar. The fest is held rain or shine under the big tent. Admission is free.
Long Grove: Long Grove's Oktoberfest is held Sat.-Sun, Oct.12-13, in the historic village in the northwestern suburbs of Chicago. Celebrate the historic village’s German roots with the family. Attractions include: Oktoberfest Beer Tents, authentic German food, live entertainment, German music, free hayrides through town (1-5 p.m.) and fall fun. Admission is free.
Marengo: Marengo Settler's Days is held Thurs.-Mon., October 10-14. Highlights include a pets parade on Sat. and a community parade on Sun. Skinner's Carnival is open Fri.-Sat.-Sun.. Cody’s Farm (River Road) includes Corn Maze, Children’s Tractor Track, Corn Box, Corn Tunnel and Fall Decorations is open Fri.-Sat.Sun. and Mon. Entertainment on Sat. includes a petting zoo, garden tractor pull, exotic animals and more. Modern Day Romeos play live music on the Main Stage on Sat. night. The beer garden is near the Main Stage (E. Washington St.).
Bensenville: Bensenville Park District's Fischer Farm Heritage Day reenacts farm life circa 175 years ago on Sat., Oct. 12 (11 a.m.-3 p.m.). Explore historic buildings and meet the Fort Dearborn Militia and see the Taylor's Battery re-enactors. Free activities for children at Churchvillle Schoolhouse. A complimentary shuttle is available. Children under 12 can get a wristband for $5 that supplies one pumpkin (while supplies last), pony rides, and unlimited access to the petting zoo and inflatables.
Wheaton: Fall Festival at Cantigny Park is on Sat., Oct. 12 (10 a.m.-4 p.m.). The fest offers activities for children, some with a nominal fee, such as pony rides ($2), hayrides ($2), face painting ($1) and petting zoo ($1). Admission is free but there is a $5/car fee for parking.
Lake Geneva, Wisc.: Lake Geneva Oktoberfest is a family oriented street festival in southeastern Wisc. that is being held Sat. and Sun., Oct. 12 and 13. The festival features a bouncy castle for children, pony rides and hayrides. Food and craft booths offer fall treats, such as caramel apples and popcorn. A free shuttle runs from Home Depot to the festival in downtown Lake Geneva.
In addition to these weekend celebrations, there are family oriented events at some of the larger farmstands and even some early Halloween events held in communities in the Chicagoland area.