When I grew up, it was weekends like this that made me say “there’s nothing to do here” in that whiny teenage voice I’ve gladly grown out of. If only I would’ve had a blog site like River City Ramblings to keep me updated on everything happening in Peoria! Although the Peoria Chiefs are out of town, not much is happening at the Peoria Civic Center and there’s only one concert at CEFCU Center Stage, there’s still so much happening in the area that most people don’t know about.
So I’ve taken on the responsibility of promoting these hidden-gem events in this week’s edition of “What’s Playing in Peoria?”
Duryea Days: For the 9th year, this festival will emerge on the streets of Peoria Heights, and this year it’s expanding. A number of local businesses and Heritage Square will join Tower Park in hosting this two-day festival that is jam-packed with family-friendly activities. Tower Park will feature live music, draft beer, food vendors, a car and motorcycle show, and a hot dog eating contest. A fashion show will be taking place with the Sidewalk Sale on Saturday along the street. Heritage square will boast a bags tournament, dunk tank, food, beer and a remote radio broadcast from Classic Rock 93.3. Stop by the festival sometime this weekend to get a taste of Peoria Heights!
Olde English Faire: This Middle Ages-themed festival pays tribute to the sights, sounds, speech and activities of the time period. There will be mock battles between jousters, sword fighters and archers. Take in the tales, tricks and tunes of amazing story tellers, magicians and musicians. There will be plenty of hearty food and beverages offered throughout the Park, as well as shaded areas to rest, restroom facilities and free parking. I’d hate to forget to mention that dressing in costume earns you $1 off of your ticket price. For a trip through history that is full of fun, head out to Wildlife Prairie Park.
Peoria Historical Society Trolley Tours: Two of the well-known trolley tours offered by the Peoria Historical Society are the “Old Peoria & the Judge Tour” and the “Naughty to Nice Tour,” which takes you through Peoria’s history from the gambling and gangsters to the four All-America City Awards. There’s no doubt that the trolley tours are one of the hidden gems in the city. What better way to learn about the local culture and who Peoria really is than to take a ride through history?
Live at the Five Spot: For some Friday night music, head to the Contemporary Arts Center on Water Street in downtown Peoria. Ed and Janet Kaizer will be performing their unique sound of classical music mixed in with some jazz. If you don’t quite feel ready to go home after the show, stick around for introductory Salsa dance classes. Talk about a fun Friday night!
2013 Great Race: Peoria will host a lunch stop on the 2013 Hemmings Motor News Great Race presented by Hagerty on Monday, June 24th. I know, I know. This list of events is only supposed to include weekend activities, but this event is so cool that I couldn’t pass it up. Just after noon, the classic cars will begin arriving in one-minute intervals for more than an hour and a half and stay for an hour each to allow spectators to visit with participants and to look at the cars. Most car owners will allow children to climb into them so they can get a closer look. Be sure to head down to the Peoria RiverFront for lunch on Monday and enjoy the classic cars as they make a stop in Peoria.
As always, stay busy Peoria and keep it here for news on everything “Playing in Peoria!”
Written By: Andrew Ketterer
This post is part of a weekly series that is designed to promote a weekly schedule of Peoria Area Convention and Visitor Bureau Member businesses and events.