Anticipation is high for the 27th Annual Nashville Fall Festival where visitors will weave among more than 100 craft and food booths set up in Nashville, Illinois, on the lawn and in the streets around the Washington County Courthouse.
Dozens of vendors of handcrafted goods will be gathered together to offer their wares and often demonstrate how they are made. Cheryl Zapp, executive director of the sponsoring Nashville Chamber of Commerce, tries to assure that only handcrafted merchandise is offered, nothing manufactured for resale. Goods displayed and offered in the past have ranged from paintings, alpaca sweaters, and ceramics to lawn ornaments and decorated cat beds made from computer monitors.
The craft booths open at 8am and close at dusk, except on Sunday when craft booths are open from 11am to 5pm.
MUSIC AND ENTERTAINMENT
There’s entertainment throughout the weekend at the main stage across the street from the rear of and facing the Washington County Courthouse. This year’s musical entertainment is provided by J. Christopher and The World’s Most Dangerous One-Man Band (forget the vaudeville style one man band, Christopher has a very entertaining and professional sound), Third Shot, Midnight Sable, Homegrown Harmony, and Hicks & Strangers.
On stage the Nashville High School Stingers will perform with the dance camp students, as will the students of Sonya’s Gotta Dance. Also scheduled is a karate demonstration and tumblers from Jamie’s Tumbling. A Sunday morning church service will be offered on-stage.
The annual Fall Festival Children’s Pet Parade is Saturday morning with registration starting at 9 am. It is an always-popular event. Also appealing to the children will be a craft and game area and a petting zoo featuring a bunch of fuzzy animals from the Rainbow Ranch Petting Zoo in nearby Plum Hill.
Food booths will provide a large variety including porkburgers, fish sandwiches, ice cream, pizza, cheese dogs, chili, taco salads, chicken livers and gizzards, hot dogs, sliced caramel apples, smoked turkey legs, kettle corn, and even free snow cones, among other menu items.
Black Diamond Vineyards of Nashville will conduct a wine tasting.
Food booths open each day at 10am, with the exception of the Breakfast Booth which opens Friday and Saturday morning between six and 10 am.
Admission and parking is free. Located an hour’s drive on I-64 east of St Louis, Nashville (pop 3200) is the seat of one of the major agricultural counties of Illinois. This year’s 27th annual Fall Festival is Nashville’s largest annual event.
In conjunction with the Fall Festival, the Nashville Public Library, located a half-block from the festivities has its fall used book sale during the run of the Fall Festival with a Thursday preview night (with an admission charge) and regular hours and no admission fee on Friday and Saturday.
The annual Nashville Optimists Club 5K Run/Walk is Sunday morning at 7:30 am. The one-mile race starts at 8:30 am.
Sunday morning at 11 am the Nashville Masonic Lodge hosts its annual fried chicken dinner at the American Legion Home in Memorial Park.
For information call the Chamber of Commerce at (618) 327-3700.