Roscoe Lions Fall Festival draws good crowds in 2023
Gates opened at Leland Park to everyone as the Roscoe Fall Festival began three days of fun on the weekend of Sept. 8, 9 and 10. Each day great crowds came out to support the Roscoe Lions Club's mission of serving the community. Roscoe Lions Club adheres to the motto, “We Serve.”
The Roscoe Fall Festival has been ongoing for 113 years, with the Roscoe Lions Club holding the reins for 53 of those.
As always, there was no admission cost to enter the festival.
Different generations who came to the event as a child are now bringing their own children and grandchildren to this always popular event.
Skinner's Amusements set up carnival rides covering every age bracket. Popular ride choices for little ones included swings, a dragon coaster, and the Baja Buggy.
Mixed ages had fun on a Super Slide, a fun house, or riding the Zipper, Cliffhanger, the Tornado or the super fast Re-Mix.
Games filled the midway including basketball, knocking over a bottle, picking a frog, water squirting aim games, and balloon pop games. Each gave players an opportunity to win a prize. More plays at a game offered a chance to trade up a smaller prize for a larger one. Photo booths gave more options to create memories.
Girl Scouts of Northern Illinois showed their artistic talents through face painting.
Rows of carnival food booths offered everything from pizza, Chinese fare, elephant ears, funnel cakes, ice cream, beverages, and much more. The Lions Cafe was open with the long time favorite option of cream chicken on a biscuit. A ham dinner and pork chops were also on the menu plus hot dogs, burgers or pork chop sandwiches.
Adult beverages such as beer, wine or Bloody Mary's could be purchased at the Poison Ivy Pub beer tent.
Young and young at heart visited Teddy Mountain, where you could make your own stuffed animal, ranging from bears to rhinos or other fun choices. Guests were shown how to create a special piece and how to properly insert the stuffing which is spun in a glass box.
Another cool option allowed festival goers to create a memory as an artist drew caricatures. Artist Alan Parma is from Roscoe.
The Harlem-Roscoe Fire booth was a popular hot spot where children were given fire hats. Sweet corn was also available at their tent.
Lions bingo brought on hours of laughs, suspense, and chances to win, proving to be a popular game to play.
Local vendors, churches, politicians, businesses and organizations were set up in an exhibitor tent. All were ready to greet the public as they came through to give out information or provided an educational opportunity, while gaining valuable exposure.
One of the vendors was the Roscoe Township Historical Society who set up a fun, unique booth offering “old tyme” photos. Those who participated were allowed to choose period correct costumes and accessories.
Creations by Christy joined in the mix of interesting vendors, with homemade plant-based snacks from Roscoe.
During the weekend, First Congregational Church hosted a free clothing giveaway across the street, a tradition that they started a few years ago.
Saturday morning brought a Kiddie Costume Parade to life. Children dressed up in their favorite costumes. Special prizes were awarded in different age groups with the top boys and girls in each taking home these prizes. All participants received a free drink coupon plus a wristband for free rides.
Roscoe United Methodist Men carried out the tradition of serving a fantastic pancake breakfast to start off Sunday morning, prior to a close to an hour-long parade.
The parade featured local elementary school bands, the Hononegah High School marching band, youth organizations, Winnebago County Fair Queens and Princesses, business, media, eye-catching floats, and more. Rockton-Roscoe News staff and friends passed out newspapers.
The Lions raffle drew winning tickets for one $3,000 cash prize winner, a second place $1,500 winner and a third place who received $1,000. They also drew winners of 10 extra prizes in the amount of $50.
- 1st Prize: Lynette C
- 2nd Prize: Cathy B.
- 3rd Prize: Ron E.
- 4th Prize: Denise M.
- 5th Prize: Jerry M.
- 6th Prize: Amy P.
- 7th Prize: Kevin L.
- 8th Prize: Guy H.
- 9th Prize: Connie V.
- 10th Prize: John R.
- 11th Prize: Natalie M
- 12th Prize: Gayle K.
- 13th Prize: Jerry B.
Harlem Roscoe Fire sold tickets with lucky winners receiving either a $500 gift card, a $300 gift card or a gas grill with a gift card to Main Street Meats.
- 1st Place- Ellyn N
- 2nd Place- Sara R
- 3rd Place- Hanna B
Roscoe Lions Club works year round to support others. This year Roscoe Lions gave $5,000 in scholarships to deserving students of Hononegah High School. Over the years these scholarships have totaled more than $100,000. They also lend a hand at annual Lions Fish’n Fun events and donate to a variety of organizations.
Part of what Lions Clubs do is show support for those who are hearing or sight impaired. Visitors to the Fall Festival can donate used eyeglasses, which were collected in boxes during the festival. Glasses can also be dropped off throughout the year at several locations in Roscoe and nearby.
Special thanks are given to Gladys and Bill Hibbard of the Roscoe Lions Club for their hard work and leadership roles on this year's festival, and to the entire Roscoe Lions Club.
Volunteers, sponsors and the Village of Roscoe helped to make the event run smoothly.
By partnering together, the 2023 Roscoe Fall Festival carried out traditions, added new fun, and created a successful community event for everyone.
Click, swipe, or tap on the photo below to view an image gallery by Abby Clarke of the 2023 Fall Festival parade.
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