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Things to do with kids: St. Charles Illumination Festival

The St. Charles Illumination Festival to celebrate the city's centennial in September
The St. Charles Illumination Festival to celebrate the city's centennial in September
Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images

Whether you find yourself in the mood for a fall festival or are just looking for fun activities for kids, the St. Charles Illumination Festival promises tons of family friendly entertainment. The City of St. Charles is celebrating their centennial with carnival games, rides, live music, food, a car show and more.

The festival will be held September 12 through 15 in Frontier Park, along the Missouri riverfront.
Friday night’s festivities begin at 5 p.m. and include amusement park rides, interactive tile wall art, Fish Eye photography, and concerts by Catfish Willie and the Well Hungarians. A 5k run will also take place beginning at 7:30.

When the park reopens at 11 a.m. on Saturday, visitors will enjoy a bike parade, music by Radio Disney and 100-second challenge games. That evening, the Tekno Bubble Bus will entertain kids and three more local acts will take the concert stage. Irie Sun and Carrie & the Catapults will lead the night, with Trixie Delight finishing out the evening’s set.

On Sunday, the 100-second challenge games and interactive tile art return. More fun for kids kicks off at 1 p.m. when the zany singer of silly songs, Babaloo, takes the stage. A Model T car show will be on display from 12-5 p.m. The crew of Model T Ford Club of Greater St. Louis will amaze visitors with the quick assembly of a Model T Ford from 12-1 p.m. Groovethang will be the final music act of the day, with a concert from 3-5 p.m.

The St. Charles Illumination Festival will wrap up on Monday night from 5-9:30 p.m. with concerts by Irie Sun and Fabulous Motown Revue.

Throughout the festival, glow necklaces and other merchandise will be available for purchase to go along with the illumination theme. For more information about carnival tickets or other festival questions, call the City of St. Charles at 636-949-3372. A full schedule of festival activities can also be found at

The Illumination Festival will be fun for the entire family and a great way to ease into the fall festival season. Even though summer is winding down, activities such as this can help kids see that there are still many things to do to have fun in the fall.

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