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updated: 7/3/2014 6:08 PM

Schedule for 39th Frontier Days festival in Arlington Heights

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  • The Bacon Brothers Band

      The Bacon Brothers Band

  • Dhira Ayyagari of Arlington Heights enjoys a carousel ride with her dad, Narsu, at last year's festival.

      Dhira Ayyagari of Arlington Heights enjoys a carousel ride with her dad, Narsu, at last year's festival.
    JOE LEWNARD/Daily Herald, 2013

  • The Gin Blossoms

      The Gin Blossoms

  • Kids launch themselves at the start of the 2013 Kids Dash, the children's race at the Frontier Days Stampede.

      Kids launch themselves at the start of the 2013 Kids Dash, the children's race at the Frontier Days Stampede.
    Courtesy of Frontier Days Inc.

  • The petting zoo is a popular stop for Rebecca White and her niece, Charlotte Brook, both of Arlington Heights.

      The petting zoo is a popular stop for Rebecca White and her niece, Charlotte Brook, both of Arlington Heights.
    Mark Welsh/Daily Herald, 2013

  • The colorful carnival, in full swing at Recreation Park at the 2013 Frontier Days.

      The colorful carnival, in full swing at Recreation Park at the 2013 Frontier Days.
    DAILY HERALD FILE PHOTO

 
Daily Herald report

It's been 39 years since Arlington Heights decided to put on a festival to honor the nation's 200th birthday, and the fact that Frontier Days has been running that long is a testament to the people who saw the possibilities back in 1976.

Today, Frontier Days is not only a staple summer festival in Arlington Heights, but a huge regional draw as well. This year, when the festival opens Wednesday for a five-day run, isn't expected to be any different. With a musical lineup that includes main stage acts The Bacon Brothers, Sister Hazel, the Gin Blossoms, American English and the Chicago Six, the crowds are expected to be as deep as ever.

"We tried to get Kevin Bacon last year, but it didn't work out," says Bill Peery, entertainment chairman for the festival. "He just brings a certain star quality to the lineup."

The main stage is just one of three entertainment stages with ongoing shows. The fest also has lots of food from area restaurants, carnival rides, a petting zoo, pony rides, an Arts & Crafts Marketplace, an interactive Family Fun Area, as well as different games and competitions each day.

"We really work to make it a family-oriented event, with something for everyone," says co-chairwoman Pat Peery.

Throughout the fairgrounds, 400 "red shirt" volunteers man the different events and competitions.

The group has been self-sustaining since the beginning. They get in-kind donations from the village and the Arlington Heights Park District, but no funding. Instead, the festival's food, beverage and carnival ticket sales are the main support, along with sponsorships, organizations and in-kind donations.

Surplus proceeds raised, after paying their bills and putting away seed money for the following year, are donated to local charities.

Frontier Days 2014

Festival is July 2-6 at Recreation Park, 500 E. Miner St. (3 blocks east of Arlington Heights Road). Park in downtown Arlington Heights; free shuttle buses run continuously to and from festival starting 30 minutes before the fest opens and ending 30 minutes after it closes. Visit www.frontierdays.org for details. No pets (except for specific events); no coolers in the park.

WEDNESDAY, JULY 2

5-11 p.m. Festival and carnival open (carnival bargain rides all day).

5-7 p.m. Petting Zoo and pony rides, Frontier Farm.

5-6:30 p.m. Baseball & softball skills for ages 6-12, Hickory Street baseball field.

5:30-8 p.m. Dog Frisbee catch & fetch; meet in Meyer baseball outfield. Open to all dogs, one per owner. Register at 5:30 p.m.; competition at 6:15 p.m. Dogs must be leashed and in park only during event. Info: Nick Wirth, (847) 577-3016 or nwirth@ahpd.org.

8 p.m. MAIN STAGE -- CHICAGO SIX, featuring Dan Hampton, Otis Wilson and Steve McMichael, rocking the house.

9:30-10:45 p.m. Frontier Stage, EXIT 147, playing favorite rock covers.

11 p.m. Park closes for the day.

THURSDAY, JULY 3

5 p.m.-midnight. Festival and carnival open (carnival bargain rides all day).

3-5 p.m. Battle of the Bands, teen bands rock. Apply online at FrontierDays.org

4:30-7 p.m. Baggo Tournament, Meyer baseball field. Registration closed as of June 25.

5-6:30 p.m. Hockey skills, for kids and adults, on the tennis courts. No blades.

5-7:30 p.m. Petting Zoo and pony rides, Frontier Farm.

6-7:45 p.m. Frontier Stage: Skirt Steak, the dance all night, all-lady cover band.

7:45 p.m. Main Stage: Frontier Days scholarship awards presented.

8 p.m. MAIN STAGE: SISTER HAZEL, called one of the Top 100 Most Influential Independent Performers of the last 15 years.

9:45-11:45 p.m. Frontier Stage: Lounge Puppets, plays top hair band and classic rock hits.

Midnight. Park closes for the day.

FRIDAY, JULY 4

10 a.m. July Fourth parade, "Toys on Parade," from Oakton/Dunton, to Miner to Recreation Park. Paradegoers: Respect property owners along the route and don't reserve a seat in the parkway until 7 p.m. July 3. No tarps!

10 a.m. Decorated bike parade. Ages 4-12 rides their decorated bikes in the parade. No Big Wheels. Check in at Oakton/Highland streets.

Noon-midnight. Festival and carnival open (carnival bargain rides, noon-6 p.m.)

Noon-6 p.m. Petting Zoo and pony rides, Frontier Farm.

Noon-4 p.m. Bingo, at the Frontier Stage. Card sales at noon, games at 12:30 p.m. Must be 18+ to play.

12:30 p.m. Jesse White Tumblers, on the tennis courts.

1-2:30 p.m. Mad Science, Family Fun Stage. Interactive hands-on science and imaginative learning.

1-4 p.m. Face painting, Family Fun Area.

1:30-3 p.m. Frisbee golf and skills, soccer field at Miner/Hickory. For children and adults.

2:30-3:30 p.m. Runaway Circus, brings the circus to you with hands-on balancing skills.

3:15-4:45 p.m. Punt, pass & kick football, Soccer field at Miner/Hickory. Competition for all age groups.

4-5 p.m. Rib-eating contest, Family Fun Stage. Check in 3:45 p.m. Age groups are 16-30 and 31+.

6-7:45 p.m. Frontier Stage: Scott Dubose and the 101 Ranch. Band plays "ranch rock".

8 p.m. MAIN STAGE: GIN BLOSSOMS. Distinctive melody, mystery and poignancy that Gin Blossoms fans have come to love.

9:45-11:45 p.m. Frontier Stage: Libido Funk Circus. High energy and all genres of rock.

Midnight. Park closes for the day.

SATURDAY, JULY 5

8 a.m. 3v3 Soccer Tournament. Recreation and Open divisions held at Miner/Hickory fields. Signup closed June 25.

10 a.m.-1 p.m. Citizens With Disabilities Day. Registration required online by July 1 at Frontierdays.org, or call (847) 577-8572. Check-in at the Frontier Store from 9:30-11 a.m. Carnival rides for guests with disabilities and one ride partner, 10-11:15 a.m. Lunch at the Frontier Stage, 11 a.m.-noon; entertainment is 11-1 p.m.

10 a.m.-7 p.m. Arts & Crafts Marketplace.

10:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m. Teen Volleyball Tournament, in outfield near Main Stage. For ages 13-18 in coed teams of 6-10 players. Sign up by July 3 at park district buildings or Frontierdays.org. Registration at 10 a.m., games at 10:30 a.m. Info: Morris Minuskin, (847) 255-8255.

Noon-midnight. Festival and carnival open (bargain rides noon-6 p.m.)

Noon-6 p.m. Petting Zoo and pony rides, Frontier Farm.

Noon-3 p.m. Pottery fun for kids & adults. Make spin art or paint a great piece.

12:30-1:30 p.m. Ben's Bubble Show. Family entertainment creating soap bubble sculptures.

1-4 p.m. Face painting, Family Fun Area.

2-2:45 p.m. K-9 unit. Arlington Heights police dogs and handlers show what a K-9 unit does, with demonstrations.

2:30-5 p.m. Pedal cars. Ages 21 and older try a learning experience on the dangers of drinking and driving.

3-3:30 p.m. Buttons The Clown, Family Fun Stage.

4-5 p.m. Pie eating contest, Family Fun Stage. Ages 10-adult. Register at 3:30 p.m.

6-7:45 p.m. Frontier Stage: Dick Diamond & The Dusters; relive the glory days of 70s & 80s nostalgia with a comedic twist.

8 p.m. MAIN STAGE: THE BACON BROTHERS. Their music is a mix of rock, country and folk and their fans dance and sing along.

9:45-11:45 p.m. Frontier Stage: ARRA, classic rock covers.

Midnight. Park closes for the day.

SUNDAY, JULY 6

7:30 a.m. Frontier Days Stampede Run, 5K or 10K with chip timing, 5K Walk, or 1/4 mile Kids Dash. Entry forms at park district locations, Frontierdays.org and Runners High 'N Tri. Registration opens at 6:15 a.m. at Miner School.

9 a.m.-7 p.m. 3v3 Soccer Tournament, at Miner/Hickory fields. registration closed June 25.

10 a.m.-noon. Pet Parade, Family Fun Stage. Registration at 10 a.m.; parade at 10:30 a.m. Dogs must be leashed and leave park by noon.

10 a.m.-6 p.m. Arts & Crafts Marketplace.

Noon-10 p.m. Festival and carnival open (bargain rides noon-6 p.m.)

Noon-1 p.m. Academy of Irish Band, Family Fun Stage.

Noon-3 p.m. Decorated Birdhouse Competition. Bring a birdhouse to the Family Fun Area by noon; judging by 2 p.m. Info: Derek Mach, (847) 368-5232.

Noon-4 p.m. Adult Volleyball Tournament, on outfield near the Main Stage. Ages 19+, coed teams 6-10 players. Registration starts 11 a.m.; games at noon. Info: Morris Minuskin, (847) 255-8255.

Noon-4 p.m. Bingo, at Frontier Stage. Card sales begin at noon; games at 12:30 p.m. Must be 18+ to play.

1-2 p.m. Aqua Challenge; Recreation Park Pool inflatable obstacle course. Bring swimsuit & towel, life jackets available. Free. Ages 6 and up. Sign up at pool cashier by July 2. Info: Steve Neill, sneill@ahpd.org or (847) 577-3025.

1-4 p.m. Wheelchair Bocce ball, on the tennis courts.

1-4 p.m. Face painting, Family Fun Area.

Noon-3:30 p.m. Water fights, at Haddow and Miner. Register from 11 a.m.-noon; fights start at noon.

2-4 p.m. Decorated cake contest. Bring cake to Family Fun Area by 2 p.m.; judging at 2:30 p.m. Theme: Toys on Parade! Judged on decoration and texture.

2:30-3:30 p.m. Dave's Traveling World of Reptiles, Family Fun Stage. Up close and hands-on exciting exotic reptiles.

3:45-4:15 p.m. Buttons The Clown, Family Fun Stage.

4:30-5:30 p.m. Harper College Steel Drum Band, Frontier Stage.

5:45-7:30 p.m. Frontier Stage: Howard and the White Boys. Blues act mentored by Buddy Guy.

7:30 p.m. MAIN STAGE: AMERICAN ENGLISH, region's most renowned Beatles tribute band.

10 p.m. Festival closes for 2014.

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