New activities on tap for North Aurora Days
NORTH AURORA – Those attending this weekend’s North Aurora Days will find an array of new activities, including a French market and beer and wine tasting.
“One of my goals was to add a new event every year,” said Mark Gaffino, chairman of the North Aurora Days Committee, which puts on the three-day festival. “The French market is new this year, and we brought back the beer- and wine-tasting event and the car show.”
The festival, which kicks off Friday and runs through Sunday, is expected to attract between 7,000 and 10,000 people, Gaffino said.
The French market, which will feature jewelry, clothing, garden decor, baked goods and other items, will be from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday at Island Park in North Aurora. Sharon Harwick, part owner of the Past and Present Shoppes in North Aurora, is organizing the event.
“It was something to try,” Harwick said. “I’m hoping it will become an annual event. We have 30 booths that should have a lot of fun things.”
Raimondo’s Pizza & Pub, located at the corner of Randall and Orchard roads, will have two wine- and beer-tasting events as part of the festival. From 3 to 6 p.m. Friday, 11 wines from family-owned vineyards of Italy and California will be showcased, and from 1 to 4 p.m. Saturday, there will be a tasting event of beers brewed in Illinois.
Awards such as best of show and best mopar will be given out during the festival’s car, truck and bike show, which will be from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday at the Mooseheart campus. The entrance to the event is along Mooseheart Road.
The festival offers a variety of other activities. The Community Garage Sale will be from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Friday, Saturday and Sunday. Maps are available online at www.northauroradays.com.
The festival will feature old favorites, including the popular emergency vehicle lights and sirens parade, which will begin at 7 p.m. Friday at the Tinseltown USA movie theater on Route 31, then head down Oak Street to the festival site at Clock Tower Plaza, Randall Road and Oak Street.
Afterward, children ages 5 to 12 can participate in an ice cream eating contest at 7:30 p.m. at Clock Tower Plaza. Participants can sign up that night. Prizes will be awarded to the fastest eater in each age group.
Other activities Friday include live entertainment, fireworks and games for all ages.
More emergency vehicles will be on display from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday at the Chicagoland Emergency Vehicle Show at Pentair Water and Oberweis Dairy near Interstate 88 and Randall Road.
Huntoon Stables at 507 Oak St. will offer free horse rides from 4 to 5 p.m. Saturday for children ages 12 and under.
For another year, the North Aurora pet parade is part of the festival. Registration and lineup for the parade starts at 1 p.m. Sunday at the North Aurora Activity Center at the corner of Lincolnway and State Street.
At 2 p.m., participants will parade across the State Street bridge to the gazebo at North Island Park.
If you go
A full list of activities for North Aurora Days, which runs Friday through Sunday, is at www.northauroradays.com.
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