Recreation opportunities abound in our region! Here are a few of the best our area has to offer.
Kane County Flea Market
May 2-3, June 6-7, July 4-5, Aug. 1-2, Sat. noon-5 p.m., Sun. 7 a.m.-4 p.m. Up to 1,000 dealers display and sell antiques, collectibles, Fancy Junque. A country breakfast is served on Sundays. $5. Kane County Fairgrounds, 525 S. Randall Road, St. Charles, (847) 358-1185, kanecountyfair.com.
Woodland Wild Flower Walk
May 3, 9:30 a.m. Tour of Harley Pond and Woods to learn about the native environment and ecosystems of Illinois. Reservations required. $6 adults/$3 children. Garfield Farm Museum, 3N016 Garfield Road, LaFox, (630) 584-8485, garfieldfarm.org.
Bob Blazier Run For The Arts
May 3, 7 a.m. CARA-registered 5K run, one-mile walk/run and kids 50-yard dash through downtown Crystal Lake. Proceeds support local arts programs. Raue Center For The Arts, 26 N. Williams St., Crystal Lake, (815) 356-9212, rauecenter.kintera.org.
Spring Wildflower Walk
May 3, 11 a.m.-noon. Guided walk to identify and learn about spring woodland wildflowers. Ryerson Woods Conservation Area, 21950 N. Riverwoods Road, Riverwoods, (847) 968-3321, lcfpd.org.
May 9, 7-9:30 a.m. Steady 2-3 mile hike through woodlands and grasslands in search of as many species as possible. BYO binoculars and field guides if you have them. Refreshments and tallies follow. Powers-Walker House. Kettle Lot, Glacial Park Conservation Area, 6316 Harts Road, Ringwood, (815) 479-5779, mccdistrict.org.
Free Bird Walk
May 10 & 12, 7 a.m. Join a skilled birder on these walks. Bring binoculars. Presented in partnership with Lake County Audubon and Lake Cook Audubon. Ryerson Woods, Riverwoods, lcfpd.org.
Civil War Days
May 15-16, 10 a.m.-4 p.m. More than 300 re-enactors camp on site; 2:30 p.m. battle each day; demos of 19th century medical techniques; food; shopping; more. Naper Settlement, 523 S. Webster St., Naperville, (630) 420-6010 napersettlement.org.
Long Grove Chocolate Festival
May 15-17, 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Chocolate in all its many forms; live entertainment throughout the village; shopping; food; specialty vendors. Historic Long Grove Village, (847) 634-0888, visitlonggrove.com.
47th Annual Fair Diddley Craft Show
May 17, 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Featuring more than 300 artists and crafters, sponsored by the Mental Health Resource League McHenry County. All proceeds benefit county agencies concerned with mental health services. Historic Woodstock Square, Woodstock, (815) 385-5745.
Rare Breeds Livestock Show
May 17, 11 a.m.-4 p.m. Breeders from around the Midwest display rare and historic livestock. Individual breeders may offer livestock and poultry for sale. $6 adults/$3 children. Garfield Farm Museum, 3N016 Garfield Road, St. Charles, (630) 584-8485, garfieldfarm.org.
38th Elgin Valley Fox Trot
May 23, 7:30 a.m.-noon. 6:30 a.m. registration. 10-mile/5k run/2-mile fun walk with cash prizes, CARA-endorsed. Proceeds benefit 18 local nonprofits. Race start: Intersection of Kimball & Douglas, Elgin. Discount for advanced registration: cityofelgin.org/foxtrot, (847) 531-7005.
May 23, 7-10 p.m. Look at stars, galaxies, nebulae and star clusters with the help of Northwest Suburban Astronomers members’ telescopes. Dress for weather. BYO telescope or binoculars if desired. Marengo Ridge Conservation Area, 2411 S. Ill. Rt. 23, Marengo, (847) 479-5779, mccdistrict.org.
May 24, 10 a.m.-3 p.m. Kites as large as 90 feet; performances by Team Chicago Kite; learn-to-fly lessons; family kite fly time; single-line kite flying; free kite to first 250 children. Lippold Park soccer fields, Ill. Rt. 176, Crystal Lake, (815) 459-0680, crystallakeparks.com, chicagokite.com.
Barrington Cruise Nights
May 28, June 4-25, July 2-30, Thurs. 6:30 p.m. Kick off the 12th year of weekly Cruise Nights, each week featuring a different style or model of car. This week is Chevrolet. Downtown Barrington, South Cook Street, barrington-il.gov.
Harvard Milk Days
June 5-7, events daily. This tribute to our farming heritage includes 10K run, antique tractor show, carnival, milk-drinking contest, cow chip lotto, Milky Way parade, more. Downtown Harvard, (815) 943-4614, milkdays.com.
24th Annual Civil War Days
July 11-12, Sat. 10 a.m.-5 p.m., battle 3 p.m.; Sun. 9 a.m.-3 p.m., battle 1:30 p.m. Largest Civil War re-enactment in Northern Illinois: military/civilian camps & re-enactors; historical figures; period games for kids; Civil War-era shopping; period music; food vendors; exhibits. Lakewood Forest Preserve, 27277 Forest Preserve Dr., Wauconda, lcfpd.org.
Pride of the Fox Riverfest
June 11-14, events daily. Annual event featuring the ancient sport of dragon boat racing, a 40-ton Fantasy Sand Sculpture, water ski shows, carnival, petting zoo, and an assortment of events and entertainment for all ages. Downtown St. Charles, (630) 444-7460.
Barrington Country Garden & Antique Faire
June 19-20, 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Visit the grounds and gardens of three outstanding Barrington-area estates for inspiration, shopping and leisure. Gifts, garden accessories, designer vignettes, food, free shuttle service. Benefits Barrington-based charity Hands of Hope. Tickets: $45; after June 14, $55. Also available at event. Info: (847) 381-7367, handsofhopeonline.org.
June 23-28, events daily. Annual heritage celebration, with live entertainment, carnival, children’s activities, Grand Parade, Sweden Väst, multi-ethnic food, shopping, more. Downtown Geneva, Geneva Chamber of Commerce, (630) 232-6060, genevachamber.com.
Long Grove Strawberry Festival
June 26-28. Three days of live entertainment, activities, children’s rides, vendors and, of course, strawberries – fresh, chocolate-covered, in ice cream, smoothies, baked goods, plus merchant specials. Historic Long Grove Village, (847) 634-0888, visitlonggrove.com.
31st Annual America’s Cardboard Cup Regatta
June 27, 9 a.m. Build A Boat on Site and other categories; trophies; fun for the entire family. Registration & info: cardboardcup.com. Event: Main Beach, 300 Lakeshore Drive, Crystal Lake.