It's not every day that you get the chance to enjoy a carnival ride solo, like 4-year-old Emile Rojowska did on Saturday at Northwest Fourth-Fest in Hoffman Estates.
Emile's aunt Agnes Rojowska said she came from Chicago to hang out with her brother and niece, who live in Bartlett.
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"It's our first time here," Agnes Rojowska said, as Emile rode shotgun on the dragon train with a huge grin on her face. "We came so she could have some fun."
The festival, now in its second edition, is held on the grounds outside the Sears Centre Arena in Hoffman Estates.
Eleven-year-old Brian Nelson of Streamwood said he especially liked his first time at the wheel on bumper cars. Brian is a member of Boy Scouts Troop 199, which helped with food tent cleanup.
"I saw it at Itasca Fest, but I never did it before," he said. "It was very fun, although it's very complicated. If you turn the wheel around all the way, you go in reverse!"
Julie DePirro of Streamwood tried her luck at a quarters game, and won several coins.
"You've got to shoot for something, right?" she joked.
DePirro and her husband Lloyd Witt were planning to have lunch at the festival, which she praised for having free admission. "It's good family fun," she said.
The arts and crafts fair held inside the Sears Centre Area was somewhat disappointing, said Jackie Vitos of Streamwood, who came with her sister, mother and niece.
"It was nice, but it was very small," Vitos said.
Some enjoyed the chance to learned about exotic animals during a presentation by Lauren Grimm of Animals for Awareness, based in Palos Park.
Grimm showed off an albino Burmese python, a skunk, a blue and gold macaw, a fennec fox, a baby link and others.
Northwest Fourth-Fest continues from noon to 10 p.m. on Sunday at 5333 Prairie Stone Parkway in Hoffman Estates. For information, visit northwestfourthfest.com or call (847) 649-2222.