The Scene

5 Things to Do: Oglesby to host one of summer’s largest carnivals, festivals in the Illinois Valley

Plenty of music, food, family entertainment looking ahead

People ride the Magic Carpet carnival ride during the Oglesby Summer Fun Fest on Thursday, June 15, 2023 in Oglesby.

Here are five things to do in the Illinois Valley:

1. Summer Fun Fest: Oglesby’s annual bash runs Thursday through Sunday, featuring a sizable carnival, food vendors, a fireworks display and live music. Carnival hours are 4 to 11 p.m. Thursday and Friday, 1 to 11 p.m. Saturday and 1 to 9 p.m. Sunday. Wristbands are $30 each. Timberworks Lumberjack Shows will at 1 p.m, 3 p.m. and 5 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. Dave DiNaso Traveling World of Reptiles will be at 12:30 p.m. Sunday. Lance Lipinsky and the Lovers will perform from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. followed by the Blooze Brothers from 9 to 11 p.m. Saturday is “‘80s Legends Night” starting with Ladd Sound Productions from 3 to 5 p.m. and 303 performing from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. Queen Explosion caps the evening with a performance from 9 to 11 p.m. “The Stars Come Home” is Sunday’s theme. Paddy’s Favorite Sons take the Oglesby stage 1 to 3 p.m. The Sharpe Family Singers, of “America’s Got Talent” fame, make their return from 3:30 to 5:30 p.m. followed by Boat Drunks, a Jimmy Buffett tribute, performing from 6 to 8:30 p.m. The fireworks show is scheduled to begin at 9:30 p.m. Sunday. Go to for more information.

2. Beef and Ag Fest: The Bureau County Cattlemen will present the 45th annual Beef and Ag Festival on Saturday at Soldiers and Sailors Park in Princeton. Food from the Bureau County Cattlemen, the Princeton Lions Club, Sisler’s Ice Cream and beverages by TCA will be served 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Activities include the Princeton Farmers Market from 8:30 a.m. to 1 p.m.; the St. Louis Parish pie sales at 11 a.m. (pies may be sold out) and the pedal pull at 1 p.m. There also will be a petting zoo, among other activities. Music will be provided by Jason Pritchett from 6 to 7:30 p.m. and Seven Miles South from 11:30 to 1 p.m., as well as G’s Combo (Gary Frog Swanson).

3. Celebrate La Salle: Three nights of headline music are planned Thursday, June 20, through Saturday, June 22, on Second Street in downtown La Salle. Hairbanger’s Ball will perform 7 p.m. June 20; Burning Red: A Tribute to Taylor Swift is set 7 p.m. June 21, followed by Alika Arlynn; then ARRA will take the stage 6 p.m. June 22 followed by Resurrection: A Journey Tribute. Fireworks are planned 9:45 p.m. June 20. There will be a carnival June 20-23, along with other downtown activities. Go to for more details.

4. Jordan Block Jams: Ottawa’s new music series kicks off 7 to 9 p.m. Friday, June 21, at the Jordan block. Cowboy Company will perform. Drinks will be served by JJ’s Pub, and Freaky Fries, Bertha’s and Polancic’s will be on-site providing food. The city’s annual Music in the Park Series will begin 6 to 8 p.m. Saturday, June 22, at Washington Square with a performance from The Neverly Brothers.

5. Liberty Fest: Streator will host its Independence Day party June 29-30 at City Park. There will be vendors, kid’s corner, a cookout, the crowning of Little Miss Sparkler and Mr. Firecracker, a car show, bounce houses, an ice cream and pie social, the emergency vehicle show and a parade that weekend. Go to for more information.

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Shaw Local News Network

Shaw Local News Network

Shaw Local News Network provides local news throughout northern Illinois