5 things to do in the Illinois Valley: Fall activities, arts, car show among the activities

Activities set in Ottawa, Streator, La Salle, Princeton, Marseilles

Scarecrow Festival and Fall Festival: The annual Scarecrow Festival is scheduled 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday in Ottawa’s downtown. The downtown will be scattered with a variety of homemade scarecrow entries for judging. Additionally, the event will have music, food and more than 40 vendors and other activities. A Battle The Buffalo Chili Competition will take place at noon Saturday on the Jordan block. A panel of judges will blind taste all of the competitors, including the Lone Buffalo, for the top chili prize. After the champion is announced, chili will be sold for $5 a cup with proceeds going to the Ottawa Community Food Basket. The Fall Festival and parade is scheduled 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday in downtown Ottawa, mostly in the Jordan block. The event will feature free children’s activities, live music by Bob Bradish and the Backstabbers, vendors and food. The parade begins at 1 p.m. The route will start at Jackson Street and travel down La Salle Street past the Jordan block. More than 35 groups and organizations are signed up to take part in the parade.

“The Ark”: Engle Lane Theatre in Streator will present the musical opening 2 p.m. Sunday at the theater, 1012 Columbus Road. In the “Ark,” Noah and his family embark on their mission. A fresh take on a familiar tale, it’s the story of how one family learns to brave life’s rough waters by sticking together. The music telling the story goes from pop to gospel and everything in between. “The Ark” will be playing at Engle Lane Oct. 3-7, with shows beginning at 7 p.m. Oct. 3-6 and closing out at 2 p.m. Oct. 7. Tickets are $20 for adults and $10 for children 12 and younger, available online at https://englelane.org or through the box office. The box office is open from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Monday through Saturday. For information, call 815-672-3584.

Nightmare Haunted Attraction: The Nightmare Haunted Attraction will be open from 7 to 10 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays beginning Friday through Oct. 28 at the Bureau County Fairgrounds, 811 W. Peru St. in Princeton. This will be the 20th year that the popular haunt will be in Princeton. The show uses a team of actors, artists and designers to create an interactive experience that is constantly changing.

Quiet Fest: The inaugural La Salle arts festival will feature activities Friday and Saturday at various locations. There will be vendors set up 3 to 7 p.m. Friday and 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. on the green space on First Street, live music, including street musicians 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. along First Street. Among the highlights are short films played 4 to 7 p.m. at Stage 212, 700 First St., a drag brunch 11 a.m. at Haze, 159 Bucklin St. and an art speaking youth program 1 to 3 p.m. at the La Salle Public Library, 305 Marquette St.

Blast from the Past Car Show: The Marseilles event is scheduled 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday at Terry Bentz car lot at the corner of Bluff and State streets. Cost is $10 for vehicle entry. There will be best of show trophies, along with other awards at 3:30 p.m. Craft vendors will be set up on the east side of State Street. There will be food for sale by the Cub Scouts and popcorn will be sold by the Masonic Lodge.

Would you like your event featured in this weekly feature? The first step is submitting your events to The Times, NewsTribune or Bureau County Republican’s community calendar at starvedrockcountry.com/local-events/ where they are then considered for inclusion in this feature.

As the weather turns chilly and the leaves begin to fall, the Nightmare Haunted Attraction returns yearly to the Bureau County Fairgrounds to provide a scare for all who enter.