Tricks and Treats: Peoria Area Halloween Festivities


There are plenty of spooky delights in the Peoria Area this Halloween season! The chilled air and golden leaves are a perfectly pleasant backdrop for the magical, eerie and downright terrifying events going on this October.

The Massacre Mansion haunted house, Trail of Terror walking trail, Haunted Express wagon ride, and the family-friendly Boo Barn.

Thrills and chills at the Peoria Asylum!

Show off your costume, enjoy a hayrack ride, participate in a sack race and have your fortune told!

Explore the darker side of Peoria and discover the stories that have built ghostly legends over the years.

Come brave the creepiest, crawliest, most horrifying things imaginable in this 100+ year-old building with tunnels of pure terror!

Family-friendly, fun-filled activities including Trick-or-Treat trail, rides on the Train-sylvania Express and hayrack rides.

Packed with hundreds of mums, this event makes a great escape from the fall chill in the air and offers a peaceful respite before the holiday season begins.

Within nature, there are many spooky creatures and seriously dangerous, even frightening, plants. Explore sensationally spooky creatures and beautiful but dangerous plants.

Enjoy an all-ages costume contest with prizes, parade down Court Street, and trick or treating at downtown businesses with treats for the kids.

Fun for all ages! Parade, refreshments and prizes awarded for best costumes. Parade begins at 11:00 am. Refreshments following Parade at Peoria Heights Flowers

Trick-or-treat and enjoy Halloween fun with Washington’s local businesses along the trail in the Washington Park.

Instead of going from door to door, kids go from trunk to trunk collecting their Halloween treats! Hosted at the Proctor Center.

Join the Peoria Marriott Pere Marquette for a night of bubbling elixirs and ghoulish delights to benefit the Greater Peoria Honor Flight!

Come enjoy a post-Halloween wrap-up of mysteriously spooky science experiments – from oozing pumpkins and glowing drinks to bubbling potions and dancing ghosts.


Central Illinois Auto Show

Written By: Andrew Ketterer

The Peoria Civic Center will host the 25th Annual Central Illinois Auto Show from Friday, April 4 through Sunday, April 6. Over 30 dealers will display over 300 vehicles from 29 different manufacturers on one level and under one roof in Peoria.  The show offers an opportunity to see newest in cars, trucks & SUV’s and is expected to reach the 40,000-attendance mark like in past years. There will be 118,000 square feet of vehicles on display in the Exhibit Hall and Theater Lobby.

You’ve got to check it out!



Peoria Civic Center
201 SW Jefferson Ave.
Peoria, IL 61602

auto showWhen?

Friday, April 4: 12 – 8 p.m.
Saturday, April 5: 11 a.m. – 8 p.m.
Sunday, April 6: 11 a.m. – 5 p.m.


Age 16 & Older: $5
Age 15 & Under: FREE with paid adult


Mature adults (60+) will be admitted at half price as part of Senior Day on Friday, April 4

Advanced tickets will be available at all Peoria Metro Dealer Locations and at the Civic Center entrances the day of the show.



To celebrate the 25th anniversary, the first 500 daily attendees will receive a free commemorative tote bag. There are also daily giveaways, including a coupon for 50% off any car wash to the first 2,000 visitors each day. McDonalds will do something similar, giving away free cheeseburger coupons to the first 300 daily attendees on Friday and Saturday.


Floor Map






Calling All NASCAR Fans

Do you think you could drive a car from NASCAR? If so, come test your skills this weekend on the ultimate NASCAR interactive experience. You’ll strap into the #38 M7M’s Ford Fusion racing simulator and experience all the thrills of being a professional racer. There is also a scaled children’s race car for the young ones.


Make it a Family Affair

You won’t need to worry about keeping your kids entertained. SpongeBob SquarePants, Capt. America and Spiderman will do it for you. Children will be able to take pictures and participate in several meet & greet sessions with these characters. There’s even a giveaway where three winners receive a gift basket full of super hero items! Kids must be wearing a superhero costume to enter.


Stay up-to-date on Peoria Area happenings by connecting with us on Facebook,Twitter, LinkedIn, Google +, and YouTube.

“Playing in Peoria” – March 20

Written By: Andrew Ketterer

How do you like to spend your weekend? Are you looking for an event for you and friends that leaves you laughing hysterically? Maybe you’re craving a concert that will have your feet stomping. What about something a little more artsy, or something that your entire family can enjoy?

The point is that the Peoria Area has something for everyone, especially this weekend. Check out our preview of a few events that should peak your interest.


 Peoria Civic Center: Jim Gaffigan

One of the most popular comedians on the scene today, Jim Gaffigan, will be performing stand-up at the Peoria Civic Center on Friday at 7 p.m. His clever, quiet style has made him one of the top-five most successful touring comedians in the country. You won’t want to miss this hilarious performance. Seriously, everyone needs a few laughs while waiting for the warmer weather to arrive!


Wine & Art Night at Peoria Riverfront Museum

Relax and enjoy sipping on a glass of fantastic wine while creating a work of art just for you on Saturday from 7-9 p.m. at Peoria Riverfront Museum. The group will discuss all types of art and sip wine, while each creates a take-home piece of art. All wine and materials are provided at the event.

Seating is limited and the event is for those 21-and-over. Tickets cost $30 for members and $40 for the public.


1506857_428778737257647_520022316_nLimelight Eventplex: Molly Hatchet

Have you checked out Central Illinois’ newest performance venue—Limelight Eventplex? This weekend is the perfect opportunity, as the southern rock group Molly Hatchet performs with special guests Exit And Wolf and Gypsy. The doors will open at 6 p.m. and the show will start at 7 p.m. Tickets cost $21 and there will be no seating, only general admission.


Digital Photography Creativity Seminar

Join the Peoria Camera Club on Saturday from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. for their “Digital Photography Creativity Seminar,” presented by Nikon ‘Legend Behind the Lens’ Tony Sweet. Learn about Sweet’s visual inspiration, along with valuable techniques and knowledge you can easily incorporate into your photography.

This event is being held at the Performing Arts Center at Illinois Central College in East Peoria. Registration is $85 per person.


Membership Swap!

On Saturday and Sunday you’ll have the opportunity to enjoy a weekend of free general admission to the Peoria Zoo, Wildlife Prairie Park and Peoria Riverfront Museum if you’re a current member at one of the Peoria Area attractions. Don’t miss out on this incredible chance to bypass the admission charge while trying something new!


As always, stay busy and keep it here for news on everything “Playing in Peoria!”


This post is part of a weekly series that is designed to promote a weekly schedule of Peoria Area Convention and Visitors Bureau Member businesses and events.

“Playing in Peoria” – March 6

Written By: Andrew Ketterer

It’s all about performances this week in the Peoria Area. There are sports, art, performances and music lined up at several different venues and we’ve highlighted just a few of them for you.

So, don’t let the cold keep you in your house all weekend. Get out and enjoy what Central Illinois has to offer!


Nude Attitude

Join the Peoria Art Guild in showcasing the works of over 50 artists from Brazil, Canada, France and the United States as part of their Nude Attitude exhibition on Friday night from 8 p.m. to midnight. This tastefully prepared event will explore the human figure through a variety of mediums and techniques.

Tickets will be $40 at the door, but you can purchase tickets in advance HERE that will cost $20 for members and $30 for non-members.


Peoria Rivermen

The Peoria Rivermen and NASH FM 97.3 are teaming up this Friday to bring fans “NASH FM Night,” which will feature a limited number of half-price tickets in both the lower and upper bowls. And just in case that isn’t enough, the Rivermen have also announced that Friday will be another “$2 Draft Beer Night!”

So throw on your jersey and get to the Peoria Civic Center to cheer on your Rivermen as they take on the Mississippi Surge at 7:15 p.m.


2014 Annual Ice Show: I Must Be Dreaming!

The Winter Olympics may have just ended, but there is still ice skating performances going on at Pekin Memorial Arena! Travel there on Saturday afternoon for a show that features children from the Learn to Skate program, the Precise Ice Skating Team, as well as a few guest performances!

Tickets are $6 per person and the doors open at 12:30 p.m.


545936_443224419085231_1709028767_nLive at the Five Spot

Dexter O’Neal & Funk Yard will play that funky R&B music on Friday night from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. in the Preston Jackson Gallery at the Contemporary Arts Center. You’ll have the opportunity to stroll through three fine art galleries while listening to the music. You’re allowed to bring your own food and drink, or just place an order at the Rhythm Kitchen!

Tickets cost $8 for members and $12 for non-members.


Firehouse Pizza and Pub: Karaoke Night

And if you’d like to do a little performing yourself, head over to Firehouse Pizza and Pub in East Peoria on Thursday night from 8 p.m. to midnight to show of your talent. Enjoy their $3 Shock Top draft beers (Thursday’s special) and chow down on some of the best tasting pizza around.


As always, stay busy and keep it here for news on everything “Playing in Peoria!”


This post is part of a weekly series that is designed to promote a weekly schedule of Peoria Area Convention and Visitors Bureau Member businesses and events.

Wines ‘N More

Screen Shot 2014-03-04 at 9.48.49 AMWritten By: Andrew Ketterer

Harness your luxurious side in Central Illinois and come check out the broad range of quality fine wines and gourmet foods offered at Wines ‘N More in Morton, Ill. Whether you’re looking for the perfect glass of wine, a tasty treat or even if you’re looking host an event with your friends or coworkers, this is the place for you!


Wines and Wine Tasting

With a unique wine selection that includes Riesling, White, Red Moscato, Cabernet, Merlot and Gewurztraminer, Wines ‘N More is the perfect place to treat yourself. They host wine tastings once a week on Thursday nights that includes up to four different wines. Friday nights feature live music.


Gourmet Cooking Demonstrations

Who doesn’t like the sound of flavored olive oils and balsamic vinegars combined with gourmet dips and sauces, crepe mixes and soup mixes? They even offer private cooking classes with their chef for groups of 10-14 people.

Along with all of that, they also have a pasta night where they create dishes for you and your friends to sample. These meals are paired with specific wines for the perfect match and unique experience.


Girls Night Out

tableEach Thursday from 5-7 p.m., they host a complimentary wine tasting for any all of you wine loving ladies out there. Glasses of wine cost only $5 at the Wine Bar. Gourmet appetizers and small plates are available from Savory House, plus you can order premium microbrews and wines by the glass, flight or bottle from the wine list.

Also, local vendors come in and set up tables with unique gifts, wine tastings and even massage tables.

Check out the featured selections offered on their Facebook page, then stop in and discover a few new wines.


Unique Kitchen Gadgets

While you’re sipping that glass of wine or enjoying some of the tasty food, be sure to check out their incredible selection of kitchenware featuring products that will make working in your kitchen that much easier! These gadgets include knife sets, high-end cookware and bake ware, electric salt and pepper mills, casserole dishes and much more!


Wine Accessories

Along with their specialized kitchen gadgets, Wines ‘N More also offers a variety of wine accessories that will make your wine taste that much better! The selection includes high-end vacuum sealers, wine openers, filters, charms, thermometers, stoppers and aerators.


1920321_735043586520169_1971192270_nContact Information

151 S. Main Street
Morton, IL 61550
(309) 291-0899

Stay up-to-date on Peoria Area happenings by connecting with us on Facebook,Twitter, LinkedInGoogle +, and YouTube.

Kaci’s Places to Play in Peoria: JDraper Glass Studio

Written By: Andrew Ketterer

On this episode of Kaci’s Places to Play, Kaci takes a trip to JDraper Glass Studio to try her hand at blowing glass and to learn about the classes and group activities that are available at this one-of-a-kind studio.


To kick off the visit, Kaci talked with Jeremie Draper, owner and artist, and Misty Long, Jeremie’s assistant about what groups can expect when visiting the studio.

“When a group comes into the studio, they can expect an awesome, entertaining event where they’ll never see anything like this again,” says Jeremie.

1606871_454476714651885_1189974405_nJeremie and Misty provide demonstrations for visitors that include pulling hot and gooey glass that is at over 200 degrees and sculpting it into something creative and special. They also offer several different classes that range from one-time classes for $65 to a four-week class for $300.

JDraper Glass opened just four months ago at Studios on Sheridan, which features 15-working artists, two rotating galleries and even three retail stores. Visitors can come to the studios, view a demonstration or two, and then get some shopping done!

Kaci says it best, “You guys have got to come check this out for your next corporate getaway, four a group tour, or for a birthday. You will have a great time! Guaranteed!”


Stay up-to-date on Peoria Area happenings by connecting with us on Facebook,Twitter, LinkedInGoogle +, and YouTube.

Peoria Riverfront Museum: Upcoming Events

Written By: Andrew Ketterer

Peoria Riverfront Museum is one of the best ways to get you through these last few weeks of cold weather in Central Illinois. In addition to the already stunning displays and exhibits, there are usually special activities going on each week ranging from lessons in fine glass blowing to tailgating under the stars.


Whatever your family is interested in, there’s no doubt that Peoria Riverfront Museum will have something to keep everyone entertained!

Here are a few upcoming events at the museum. Which event will you be penciling in on your calendar?


Fish Feeding at Illinois River Encounter

Saturday, March 1, 3 and 3:30 p.m.

Check out the museum’s 400-gallon fish tank and learn about the native species living in the Illinois River Encounter, while watching experts feed the fish. This event is free to members and with regular paid admission.


Lunch Break Learning: Fine Glass Blowing

Wednesday, March 5, 12:15–12:45 p.m.

Get out of the office for lunch and learn how studio glass is made. Jaremie Draper, local glass artists, will discuss the entire process. Lecture admission is $3 (does not include admission to galleries or planetarium).


YPGP March Social

Thursday, March 6, 5-7 p.m.

The Younger Professionals of Greater Peoria are hosting a network event at Peoria Riverfront Museum. The exhibits and planetarium shows will be available to those attending this “business after hours” event. This event is free for Interact Track and Visionary members and $5 for all other members. All RSVP’s should be sent to


Wine and Cheese Under the Stars

Friday, March 7, 7-9 p.m.

White Oak Vineyards will be the featured winery at this unique event at Peoria Riverfront Museum. Relax, sip local wines and enjoy the starry view as the host takes you on a tour of the universe in the Dome Planetarium. This event costs $25 for members and $30 for others. Register by calling 309-686-7000.


Chemistry Demonstrations

Saturday, March 8, 1-2 p.m.

Bradley University Chemistry Club students will perform some amazing chemistry demonstrations that will have you excited about science. So stand back, watch out and prepare to be amazed by these innovative activities. This is free to members and with regular paid admission.


Central Illinois Youth Symphony Flute Choir Concert & Lecture

Sunday, March 9, 2 p.m.

Explore the Science of Music during and afternoon of fun, friends and beautiful music by the Central Illinois Youth Symphony Flute Choir. The director will explain how music helps students and what it takes for the group to be prepared for a performance. This event is free for Immerse Track and Visionary members, $5 for members and $8 for the public.


Stay up-to-date on Peoria Area happenings by connecting with us on Facebook,Twitter, LinkedInGoogle +, and YouTube.