There is so much to look forward to in the new year. The next 365 days are likely to go fast, so now is a good time to start planning for the months ahead, and you don’t want to miss these Illinois festivals in 2018.
Our great state has celebrations for just about everything. Each month brings yet another exciting event. Scroll on to discover all the fun:
During these uncertain times, please keep safety in mind and consider adding destinations to your bucket list to visit at a later date.
1. Enchanted Railroad at the Morton Arboretum (January 13 - February 19, 2018)
This one-of-a-kind event in Lisle will wow and amaze children of all ages. Enjoy a two-tier model train set designed with skill and detail in mind. Whether you love trains or just can't get enough of miniatures, this is a festival you don't want to let pass you by.
2. Great River Eagle Days (January 27-28, 2018)
In honor of the Native American traditions surrounding bald eagles and in celebration of their migration back to the state, the town of Quincy holds this unique festival. The event includes craft and food vendors, dancing, singing, and opportunities to watch eagles in their natural habitat.
3. Lincoln's Birthday at the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Museum (February 12, 2018)
Locals will be allowed to enter this museum for free for one of the best 2018 festivals in the state. The museum is in Springfield, and visitors enjoy enactments from historical characters, live music, and much more.
4. Chocolate Fest (February 17, 2018)
This Homewood event features a charity bake-off, baking demos, and a myriad of fresh baked goods for locals to try. The whole family will be amazed and will never want to leave this paradise of chocolate.
5. Antique Spectacular Vintage Market (March 2-4, 2018)
Find anything from glassware, china, postcards, rugs, quilts, jewelry, art, and much more at this one-of-a-kind market. Taking place only a few times each year, you'll find more than 70 vendors at this fabulous event.
6. St. Patrick's Day Festival (March 17, 2018)
While you'll find events like this all over the state, Murphysboro throws a celebration you certainly do not want to miss. Try green beer, classic corned beef and cabbage, as well as authentic arts, games, and more.
7. Tractor Show (April 7, 2018)
Filing up Main Street in Golconda in April each year are a plethora of old tractors that parade the streets. Food is sold during the event, and there are also races held throughout the day.
8. HerrinFesta Italiana (May 22-28, 2018)
This incredibly popular event has been going on since 1991. It includes a large carnival with many rides and games. The annual event also always has a plethora of food and craft vendors as well as live music to enjoy.
9. Superman Celebration (June 7-10, 2018)
This four-day event in Metropolis is for the true Superman fan. It involves a car show, fan films, contests, music, art shows, food vendors, and much more. Young and old alike will find a plethora of activities to enjoy.
10. 22nd Annual Glorious Gardens Festival (June 15-16, 2018)
Located at the David Davis Mansion in Bloomington, this wonderful event is one of the best 2018 festivals of the summer. Guests enjoy expertly designed landscapes and gardens to inspire their own yards.
11. Rock Island Country Fair (July 17-21, 2018)
For more than 140 years, locals have been enjoying this epic event. Each year 40,000 people attend the fair for livestock shows, arts and crafts shows, rides, and live entertainment. It is the event of the year for East Moline.
12. Cobden Peach Festival (August 3-4, 2018)
Peach lovers unite for one of the sweetest 2018 festivals Illinois has ever seen. A Peach Queen will be announced, and there will also be a parade, a contest for best peach cobbler, and a 5k run.
13. Harvard Balloon Festival (August 31 - September 2, 2018)
Nothing will astound you more than this amazing festival of lights and high-flying balloons. Food, games, helicopter rides, live shows, and much more give locals reason to attend the event all three days.
14. Warren County Prime Beef Festival (September 5-8, 2018)
In celebration of Chicago's contribution to the meat-packing industry, this event includes a pageant, a parade, live entertainment, carnival rides, food vendors, a car show, a cook-off, livestock auctions, and more. Don't miss the biggest family reunion in the county.
15. Southern Illinois Irish Festival (October 6-7, 2018)
Taking place each year since 1996 in Carterville, this Celtic experience involves live music and dancing throughout both days. Craft and food vendors set up to sell delicious treats, and there will also be many games and activities to try.
16. 19th Century Christmas (December 2, 2018)
Of course, the holidays will always come again, and with it a whole slew of festivals and events to attend. One of the best is this historical experience where guests try their hand at arts and crafts, enjoy tours of a vintage home, and listen to gorgeous holiday music from 200 years ago.
Are you looking forward to any other 2018 festivals in Illinois? Share your goals for the new year with us in the comments below!