The Scene

The 74th annual Swedish Days fest kicks off in Geneva on Wednesday

Grand Parade, concerts, carnival part of jam-packed lineup

Carol Smith and Diana Coughlin with the Viking Club and Geneva Chamber of Commerce, lead the front of the parade down Anderson Boulevard at the annual Swedish Days Parade in downtown Geneva on Sunday, June 26, 2022. The parade marked the last day of the festival which ran from June 22-26.

Swedish Days, one of the biggest summer festivals in Kane County and the state, returns for its 74th year on Wednesday and runs through Sunday.

More than 200,000 visitors and residents are expected to descend on downtown Geneva for traditional events and exciting new activities and attractions this year.

“The Geneva Chamber is pleased and excited to bring back Swedish Days in all its blue and yellow glory,” said Johanna Patterson, communications director. “We know Genevans and visitors are ready for five days of fun.”

The carnival area during the first day of the 2023 Swedish Days Festival on Wednesday, June 21, 2023. No one was injured.

Shopping & Treasures

Some shops will offer specials during Swedish Days. Select stores will be open until 8 p.m. or later Wednesday and Thursday, June 19 and 20. Sweden Väst, on Saturday and Sunday, will specialize in Swedish items. If you are looking for that Swedish Days souvenir, this is where you will find it.

Free Entertainment

Free nightly musical entertainment on Central Stage kicks off Wednesday with Geneva Park District performances and Geneva’s Got Talent. The live bands showcased Thursday and Friday will perform at Swedish Days for the first time. Enjoy featured artists in the craft beer tent on Wednesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday afternoons. Central Stage headliners include The Flat Cats on Thursday, Libido Funk Circus on Friday and The Ron Burgundy’s on Saturday.

Food Booths

Festival goers can feast on traditional Swedish and favorite American and ethnic foods including, brats, corn dogs, turkey legs, sandwiches, meatballs, pizza, garlic crab pasta, roasted corn and more at the many nonprofit food booths.

Restaurants, Pizzerias & Pubs

Don’t forget all the city’s fine restaurants. From casual bistros to five-star formal dining, a day in Geneva isn’t complete without sampling one or more of the restaurants and eateries. Or stop by one of the beer gardens that will offer good food, drink and entertainment during the festival, including the chamber’s Craft Beer Tent on James Street. Visit for a listing of restaurants, pizzerias and pubs.

Geneva Settlers Breakfast

If you have lived in Geneva for over 25 years, join others for the Geneva Settlers Breakfast on June 20. The popular event is at Copper Fox, 477 S. Third St., with breakfast served at 8:30 a.m. No reservations are necessary.

Activities For Young Visitors

The carnival opens on Wednesday and runs through Sunday, with an unlimited-ride wristband available each day. Swedish Days 2024 also is packed with favorite games – Dodgeball Tournament, 3-on-3 Basketball Tournament and mini golf.

June 21 is Kids’ Day, which kicks off with the Kids’ Day Parade leaving from Campbell and Fifth streets (look for the registration sign). The fun continues with activities galore at the Geneva Public Library, outdoors and inside.

The Kids’ Day Parade invites children through the age of 10 to enter one of the parade categories.

Swedish Days 5K Lopp

Join runners at 8 a.m. Saturday, June 22, at Peck Farm Park for the popular festival race. The $40 registration fee includes a T-shirt and onsite breakfast after the race. In order to guarantee a shirt at packet pickup, one must be registered by June 10. Race-day registration costs $50.

Grand Parade

The festival wraps up with the Grand Parade on Sunday afternoon. It kicks off at 1 p.m. at Anderson Boulevard and Center Street, moving south onto State Street and east on State Street to Third Street, heading south to end at the Geneva Metra station. This year’s parade marshal is longtime Geneva resident Kristie Dienst.

Admission to Swedish Days is free.

Events, hours and schedule are available at or call the Geneva Chamber of Commerce at 630-232-6060.

Shaw Local News Network

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