MINOOKA — Visitors can expect to find a few new things at this year’s Minooka Lions Club Summerfest, with the most noticeable being the addition of one day to the seasonal celebration.
Previously held on Saturdays, with the Minooka Community High School Band Boosters holding fundraising events Friday evenings, Summerfest has expanded to Friday and Saturday, June 21 and 22, and the band boosters’ events took place Thursday, June 20.
“We’ve been thinking about (expanding) it for a few years,” said Minooka Lions Club member and event finance chairman Jerry Davidson.
“We were doing all the work of setting up anyway, so we figured we’d add one more night.”
That gives two nights for bands to perform, rather than just the one, which Davidson said he thinks people will appreciate.
The band the festival had for years, The Silhouettes, was extremely popular, he said, but they retired a couple of years ago. The two new bands brought in last year to replace them – Kashmir and Arra – did very well, drawing a crowd of more than 900.
Those headliners will be back again this year, performing on Saturday evening at 6:30 and 8:45 p.m., respectively.
Both bands are rock, Davidson said, with Kashmir a Led Zeppelin tribute band and Arra a Chicago-based classic rock cover band.
For the new Friday night performance, the Lions are bringing in a country band, Back Country Roads, which will play Top 40 cover songs.
“We figured a country band would give them a change of pace,” Davidson said.
Back Country Roads will perform tonight, Friday, June 21, from 8:30-10:30 p.m.
Wristbands to hear the bands will be $3 for Friday and $4 for Saturday. The food vendors and beer garden have also expanded to Friday and Saturday, as well.
Saturday’s kiddie parade (10:15 a.m.) will be larger this year, according to Lions Club organizer Terry McEvilly, with the addition of the Community Band, the Channahon and Minooka junior high bands and the Minooka Community High School marching band.
Games that will be new this year include skeeball, a bean bag throw and an interactive robotic game.
Local Girl Scout troops will also have a table with crafts and activities for kids.
Thursday night was the fundraising event for the Minooka Community High School Band Boosters, and its activities expanded this year, as well.