Chicago Fall Festivals – Fall 2024 IL Events

WhiskyFest Chicago - Chicago, IL - Nov 15 to Nov 15, 2024
Meet the whisky distillers, master blenders, and other whisky experts who will be in attendance. This is your chance to taste from a selection of single malt and blended Scotch, Irish, bourbon, rye, Tennessee, Japanese, Canadian, French, Taiwanese, and craft-distilled whiskies, all assembled in one place. High-end rum, brandy, and other spirits will be available as well.

Hyde Park Jazz Festival - Chicago, IL - Sep 28 to Sep 29, 2024
The Hyde Park Jazz Festival is a collaborative platform dedicated to supporting the presentation and ongoing development of jazz, particularly on the South Side of Chicago. We do this by creating opportunities for a diverse community of listeners to engage with the music and its creators, and by working with artists, organizational partners and networks to celebrate the rich tradition of jazz and to support the development of new work and ideas.

Elim Dutch Festival - Palos Heights, IL - Sep 28 to Sep 28, 2024
Free admission and free parking for a day of fun for the whole family!

Manteno Oktoberfest - Manteno, IL - Sep 26 to Sep 29, 2024
A four day festival attended by approximately 10,000, this annual Oktoberfest is hosted by the Manteno Chamber of Commerce. Beer garden with stage offering live music. Carnival including ferris wheel and amusement rides on Main Street. Bike Night, Lighted Parade (Saturday), pet parade, grass volleyball tournament, bean bag tournament and scarecrow contest for residents of Manteno. Also a lawnmower poker run, car show and performances by Dance Alive! Dance Studio. There are also garage sales in conjunction with the event, map available two weeks prior.

American Aid Society of German Descendants Oktoberfest - Lake Villa, IL - Sep 21 to Oct 5, 2024
Three separate Saturdays of Oktoberfest and live music starting at 6:30 pm.

St. John Oktoberfest - St. John, IN - Sep 20 to Sep 22, 2024
Annual Indiana Oktoberfest from St. John the Evangelist Parish. Music, bier garden with HB and Miller, wine, German food, and kids activities such as pumpkin decorating and moon bounce. They have featured live music running all three days.

Palatine Oktoberfest - Palatine, IL - Sep 20 to Sep 22, 2024
Attendance is free at this Oktoberfest event under the big heated tent in downtown Palatine. Expect good food, good beer, good music, and lots of family friendly festival type things to do. Saturday is family day with special activities for the kids. Event is put on by the Rotary Club of Palatine as their principal fund raising event. Their support raises thousands of dollars for local charities. Opening ceremonies are at 5:00 pm on Friday. Saturday features their music and dance performances by youth groups and area choirs. Kids love the face painting, crafts and arts tables. Don’t miss Scarecrows on Parade.

German American Oktoberfest - Chicago, IL - Sep 6 to Sep 8, 2024
A parade, German hospitality, food and fun hosted by the United German-American Societies of Greater Chicago at Lincoln Square

German American Fest - Chicago, IL - Sep 6 to Sep 8, 2024
Three days and nights of German heritage fun with free admission. Not called an Oktoberfest but it does have all the festival foods, German music, singing and dancing, beverages, plus events you might expect from a big city event.

German American Heritage Center Oktoberfest - Frankfort, IL - Sep 6 to Sep 8, 2024
The German American Heritage Center invites you & your family to their Haus to celebrate Oktoberfest! Entertainment, including German music, split-the-pot raffles, vendors, German food & beer for purchase and a Kinder Area. $10 adult admission/FREE children under 18. Gates open at 2pm.

Sandwich Fair - Sandwich, IL - Sep 4 to Sep 8, 2024
The Dekalb County fair is the oldest continuing fair in the State of Illinois. It is also the largest display of agricultural and home arts exhibits in the Midwest. Since 1888.

Grant Park Turkey Trot 5K - Chicago, IL - Nov 25 to Nov 25, 2023
5K and 10K at Grant Park with Do-Rite Donuts waiting for you at the finish line.

Chicago Tardis - Lombard, IL - Nov 24 to Nov 26, 2023
Held since 2000, this festival is held by fans, for fans of both the new and classic Doctor Who series, and features panels, parties, and more. The event includes guests who were stars from the show, including 2019 guest Tosin Cole, who played the thirteenth Doctor’s companion, Ryan Sinclair. Tickets are available for single-day admission for both adults and children,plus weekend access, VIP, and more, so you can choose your experience!

Chicago Thanksgiving Parade - Chicago, IL - Nov 23 to Nov 23, 2023

Turkey Day 5K/8K Trot - Chicago, IL - Nov 23 to Nov 23, 2023
Supporting the Greater Chicago Food Depository, you will join fellow runners, joggers and walkers in some light hearted fun while ensuring no Chicagoan will go hungry this holiday season.

Dan Gibbons Turkey Trot - Elmhurst, IL - Nov 23 to Nov 23, 2023
5k fundraiser run on Thanksgiving. To date, The Dan Gibbons Foundation has donated nearly $3.9 million dollars and keeps all funds raised within the County of DuPage

North Shore Turkey Trot - Highland Park, IL - Nov 23 to Nov 23, 2023
5k and 10k on Thanksgiving

Turkey Trot 5 Mile Run - Glen Ellyn, IL - Nov 23 to Nov 23, 2023
Get active for a good cause by starting your Thanksgiving at the Turkey Trot 5-Mile Predicto Race! The top two runners who most accurately predict their finish time will win a Thanksgiving treat. Prizes will also be awarded for Best Costume. The Turkey Trot is free and open to the public

The Magnificent Mile Festival of Lights - Chicago, IL - Nov 18 to Nov 18, 2023
Musical performances and tree-lighting parade with Santa Clause, all along the Magnificent Mile. If you can’t make it, it is televised across the US and Canada!

ZooLights at Lincoln Park Zoo - Chicago, IL - Nov 17 to Jan 7, 2024
Mesmerizing light display at the zoo. Chicago’s favorite holiday tradition is back and better than ever in 2021 with the new Pepper Family Wildlife Center at the heart of the zoo, a new holiday lights experience on the Main Mall, and an exciting new light show on the South Lawn. Also new this year: sensory-friendly visit times and an impressive 18-foot holiday tree sure to inspire festive oohs and aahs. Members only nights, free and $5 admission nights, sensory friendly nights, and other special events.

Sycamore Pumpkin Festival - Sycamore, IL - Oct 25 to Oct 29, 2023
Annual decorated pumpkin display with parade, carnivals and indoor craft show. The festival started in 1956 to offer a creative outlet for the students of Sycamore has grown into a city wide event

Chicago International Film Festival - Chicago, IL - Oct 11 to Oct 22, 2023
Exhibiting films from around the world for five decades.

Chicago Marathon - Chicago, IL - Oct 8 to Oct 8, 2023
The Bank of America Chicago Marathon is known for its flat and fast course. The race starts and finishes in Grant Park and travels through one of the world’s most magnificent cities. The course has produced four world records, several national records and countless personal bests. Runners enjoy the support of 1.7 million spectators as they run through 29 neighborhoods.

Villa Park Brewfest - Villa Park, IL - Oct 7 to Oct 7, 2023
Sample from more than 80 different styles of beers from America’s best craft brewers.

Highwood Pumpkin Festival - Highwood, IL - Oct 6 to Oct 8, 2023
This fan favorite event is held to not only break the Guinness World Record of 30,581 for most pumpkins carved in one place, but to take it a step further by lighting a pumpkin for everyone affected by autism in Illinois- a staggering 52,000 individuals! Imagine pumpkins lining the streets on scaffolding towering over 30 feet lit and synced to music. It’s a site to behold and the ultimate family event!

Friendship Center Oktoberfest - Chicago, IL - Oct 6 to Oct 7, 2023
Food trucks, live music, and of course, lots of beer, as a fundraiser for the Friendship Center to feed the hungry of Chicagoland

Scarecrow Festival - St. Charles, IL - Oct 6 to Oct 8, 2023
Award winning event with more than 100+ hand-crafted scarecrows, live entertainment, carnival and craft show.

Walk4Hearing Chicago - Chicago, IL - Oct 1 to Oct 1, 2023
Empowers and inspires those affected by hearing loss while raising money for national and local programs that provide information, education, support, and advocacy. Vendors will be on site to provide resources for individuals and families affected by hearing loss.

Lincoln Square AppleFest - Chicago, IL - Sep 30 to Oct 1, 2023
A Lincoln Square tradition to celebrate fall with local musicians, children’s activities and everything apple!

Lansing Autumnfest - Lansing, IL - Sep 29 to Sep 30, 2023
Over 20,000 people come out each year to enjoy a weekend of great food, children’s activities, military tribute, a Marketplace, beer garden, and 2 stages of live entertainment.

Huntley Fall Fest - Huntley, IL - Sep 29 to Oct 1, 2023
A three day community celebration with entertainment, a beer garden, food vendors, a full carnival midway, plenty of fall activities, and a spectacular fireworks display on Saturday night! Free admission!

Grundy County Corn Festival - Morris, IL - Sep 27 to Oct 1, 2023
Parade; Corn, grain, and flower show; hobby and handicraft contest, pie eating contest, and more

Chicago Half Marathon and 5k - Chicago, IL - Sep 24 to Sep 24, 2023
Take in breathtaking cityscape views, lakefront breezes, vibrant neighborhoods and the beauty of the Windy City in the fall. Earn a HUGE finisher medal and relish in your post race glory at the Chi town infused finish line festival.

Autumn Fest - Oak Brook, IL - Sep 23 to Sep 23, 2023
This free, family-friendly event will start with kid entertainment from 2-3:30pm with a DJ, juggler, face painter, carnival games, arts & crafts, hayrides, and more! Live music will be on stage from 3:30-5pm. All the while there will be food, beer, and wine available for purchase.

Oaktoberfest Oak Park - Oak Park, IL - Sep 22 to Sep 23, 2023
Celebrate the changing seasons at Oaktoberfest! Enjoy a premier music line up, delicious fall foods, specialty craft beers, and a kids’ root beer garden! Free admission!

Oktoberfest Chicago - Chicago, IL - Sep 22 to Sep 24, 2023
Featuring handmade bratwurst, cold beer and authentic German music, this popular Chicago Oktoberfest hosted by St. Alphonsus Church. Received a 10Best Reader’s Choice Award from USA Today in 2015. Adult admission is $5-10.

Mount Prospect Oktoberfest - Mount Prospect, IL - Sep 22 to Sep 24, 2023

Long Grove Apple Festival - Long Grove, IL - Sep 22 to Sep 24, 2023
Welcome Autumn with this annual apple festival! From apple popcorn to apple lattes, enjoy hundreds of apple-inspired treats, a pop-up apple orchard with local merchangs, three stages of live entertainment, Kid Zone, and more

The Chicago LGBT International Film Festival (Reeling) - Chicago, IL - Sep 21 to Oct 8, 2023
The first Chicago LGBTQ+ International Film Festival took place in April 1981 in a 90-seat folding-chair screening room, with nearly every screening sold out. The demand and enthusiasm for the festival made it an annual event that has been going strong ever since. The mission of Reeling is to recognize the important artistic contributions that lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender filmmakers have made, educate the general population, and investigate the history of LGBTQ+ film, and to counteract this sterotyping with valid, meaningful and diverse portrayals of those in the LGBTQ+ community.

Chicago Gourmet - Chicago, IL - Sep 21 to Sep 24, 2023
Celebrate food and wine in downtown Chicago with this Bon Appetit event featuring more than 100 wineries, breweries and spirit makers as well as more than 150 top restaurants and chefs.

Chicago South Asian Film Festival - Chicago, IL - Sep 21 to Sep 24, 2023
The film festival aims to advance diversity in Chicagoland through cinema, conversation, and culture, and gives South Asian talent, stories, and themes a world platform. Held in several venues in downtown Chicago, the festival includes screenings of films, panel discussions, and other opportunities for attendees to connect with filmakers, and attend musical performances, industry workshops, tributes to major artists and awards galas

Pere Marquette Lodge Apple Festival - Grafton, IL - Sep 17 to Sep 17, 2023
Warm apple pie, hand-dipped caramel apples, handmade crafts, live music and fresh produce are just a few of the offerings at the Apple Festival at Pere Marquette. The festivities also includes apple wine tasting, kid’s activities and restaurant favorites. An apple pie walk (similar to a cake walk) will be held where visitors will purchase tickets and take a walk for a chance to take home a fresh baked apple pie. Proceeds for the apple pie walk will be donated to the Friends of Pere Marquette Foundation. The Lodge also hosts the annual Pumpkin Roll. Participants can bring their own pumpkin or purchase one at the festival to decorate for a competitive roll down the hill in front of the Lodge. Second and third place participants will win gift certificates for the Restaurant and the fastest pumpkin will win the grand prize of a free nights stay at the historic Lodge. Best of all, there’s free admission!

Riot Fest - Chicago, IL - Sep 15 to Sep 17, 2023
A three-day music festival featuring various forms of punk at Douglas Park.

Des Plaines Family Festival - Des Plaines, IL - Sep 15 to Sep 17, 2023
Free admission, musical entertainment and parking at this Lake Park fair with carnival, KidZone, car show, festival food, pie eating contest and open air market.

DeKalb Kite Fest - DeKalb, IL - Sep 10 to Sep 10, 2023
Free admission to enjoy the colorful kites that take to the sky, including giant inflatable kites, dancing kites, and stunt kites attract kite enthusiasts and families – bring your own kite or make on there!

Mundelein Arts Festival - Mundelein, IL - Sep 9 to Sep 10, 2023
A two-day juried art event with tasty food, local musicians and 45 top artists, plus artwork from local high school students, all at Kracklauer Park.

Northern Illinois Air Show - Waukegan, IL - Sep 9 to Sep 9, 2023
Over 15,000 visitors from Northern Illinois and Southern Wisconsin are expected to attend this regional air show. Formerly called the Wings Over Waukegan or Waugekan Air Show.

Festival of the Vine - Geneva, IL - Sep 8 to Sep 10, 2023
Sample wine and food as you enjoy live music and family fun.

Frankfort Fall Festival - Frankfort, IL - Sep 2 to Sep 4, 2023
Each year during Labor Day weekend, over 250,000 visitors gather to the charming Village of Frankfort to enjoy the Frankfort Fall Festival. The festival welcomes over 300 artisans from all over the United States to exhibit their elite products and services. In addition, many of Frankfort’s local organizations collaborate by sponsoring special events that highlight Frankfort Fall Festivities. There is something for everyone from carnival rides to main stage entertainment, to walking tacos and funnel cakes, and more

Septemberfest - Schaumberg, IA - Sep 2 to Sep 4, 2023
Arts & crafts show, craft beer & wine tent, carnival, 3 stages of live entertainment, Taste of Schaumburg, parade, fireworks and more at the municipal center on Schaumburg Ct. Free admission

Taste of Polonia - Chicago, IL - Sep 1 to Sep 4, 2023
This annual Labor Day weekend festival at the Copernicus Center in Chicago’s Jefferson Park offers live music, Polish food, and fun for four days.

North Coast Music Festival - Chicago, IL - Sep 1 to Sep 3, 2023

Evanston Art & Big Fork Festival - Evanston, IL - Aug 18 to Aug 20, 2023
A weekend-long celebration of local art and flavorful fare including painting, sculpture, and photography along with handmade jewelry, one-of-a-kind furniture, and home accessories.

ChangeFest Film Festival - Chicago, IL - Jul 25 to Jul 25, 2023
For 2023, a mid summer film watch party/discussion. Normally: Enjoy films that promote ideas with action.

Batfest - Batavia, IL - Oct 29 to Oct 29, 2022
Batavia’s annual Halloween themed family event attracts over 2,500 for downtown trick-or-treating, parade, pumpkin bowl, contests, art, games, and more

Revolution Oktoberfest - Chicago, IL - Sep 23 to Sep 24, 2022
Head to Revolution Brewing’s Taproom for a fun day of games, contests, music, food, and of course — German beer!

Two Brothers Oktoberfest - Aurora, IL - Sep 18 to Sep 24, 2022
The official Oktoberfest celebration will be held at the Two Brothers Roundhouse in Aurora, with the Tap House the following weekend. Enjoy a beer stein while eating authentic German food and playing classic Oktoberfest games! Free admission

Downers Grove Oktoberfest - Downers Grove, IL - Sep 16 to Sep 17, 2022
Annual fundraiser for the Downers Grove Education Foundation, with live music, food, beer, children’s activities and more!

OktoberWest - Itasca, IL - Sep 10 to Sep 10, 2022
Celebrate the unofficial beginning of autumn with the annual international OktoberWest train crawl, coming to the Milwaukee West line. Go around the world, no passport required! With five bars ending at a German Oktoberfest street festival, it’s one of their most popular crawls.

Cafe 20 Oktoberfest - Marengo, IL - Sep 7 to Sep 11, 2022
15th annual. Authentic celebration with live music and German food and bier. Location: 756 Grant Highway, Marengo, Illinois.

Thanksgiving Eve at Howl at the Moon Chicago - Chicago, IL - Nov 24 to Nov 24, 2021
Turkey is good, but booze is better! Celebrate the long holiday weekend with some live music, dancing and drinks, with featured drinks, games, dancing and a great night out!

Wizard World Comic Con Chicago - Rosemont, IL - Oct 15 to Oct 17, 2021

Oathtoberfest - Naperville, IL - Oct 9 to Oct 9, 2021
Solemn Oath Brewing hosts an Oktoberfest Celebration with Wurst Kitchen. Food, music, and of course, beer!

Chicago Ideas Week - Chicago, IL - Oct 12 to Oct 17, 2019
The world’s largest affordable ideas festival comes to Chicago, with events taking place at Harris Theater, Venue SIX10, and MCA, covering topics that affect Chicago and beyond. Guests can hear from politicians, actors, writers, and many more.