News - McHenry County

Lakeside Festival in Crystal Lake once again will feature bands, carnival rides and local food vendors

Festival organizers are still looking for volunteers, Dole official says

Friends (from left:) Vanessa Castro, Makayla Simonic and Lilly Claussen, all 13 and of Crystal Lake, feel the effects of centrifugal force on the Sizzler ride during the annual Lakeside Festival at the Dole and Lakeside Arts Park on Thursday, July 1, 2021, in Crystal Lake.

The 42nd annual Lakeside Festival at the Dole Mansion in Crystal Lake will have “something for everybody,” including performers across various live music genres, carnival rides, and a large variety of local food vendors, a Dole official said.

The four-day event, which begins June 30, will include 15 bands on two outdoor stages, many of them cover bands for rock legends such as Tom Petty or Queen, Chief Relationships Officer Erin McElroy said. Thursday night will kick off with the Waukesha-based rock band the BoDeans.

“There’s great music every night, and we always pride ourselves on offering a taste of Crystal Lake with food,” McElroy said. “On a hot summer night, we love that you can come out to the lakeside festival and support local businesses.”

Activities during the festival include a baggo tournament, and for kids, an ice cream-eating contest, face painting, a balloon twister, a stilt walker, team mascots and a magician.

The annual festival is the Dole’s largest fundraiser, McElroy said. A new feature for this year is that guests can buy general admission tickets online in advance, skipping box office lines during the festival.

The festival still is looking for volunteers, McElroy said. Those who volunteer can get a T-shirt, free entry the day they are volunteering and drink tickets, McElroy said.

“Our volunteers are what makes this special,” McElroy said. “Every year, this event is produced by and for the community.”

The Lakeside Festival will run from June 30 to July 3 at the Dole Mansion and Lakeside Arts Park, 401 Country Club Road, Crystal Lake. The hours are 3 to 11 p.m. June 30, noon to 11 p.m. July 1 and 2, and noon to 10 p.m. July 3.

Anyone interested in getting involved this year can contact McElroy at emcelroy@thedole.org or 815-455-8000, ext 108.