Rose Festival opens four-day run in Roselle
It's not summer until the Roselle Lions Club says it is.
That unofficial proclamation came Thursday with the opening of the Roselle Lions Club Rose Festival and will continue through Sunday.
The annual four-day prelude to pools and picnics will bring carnival rides, musical entertainment, bingo games and the Rose Parade to the village.
Centered around the Roselle Metra station parking lot at Irving Park Road and Maple Avenue, the festival features live music in the beer garden that started Thursday with Hinge, a cover band playing hits from the '70s through today.
On Friday, Anthem, a Willowbrook-based classic rock cover band, takes the stage at 7 p.m.
This year's festival will be more music-centric than it has in the past.
"We've added several more bands," said Bob Jilke, festival coordinator. "There's more entertainment. On Saturday, there's entertainment all day."
The entertainment starts early Saturday with a noon dance performance by a troupe from the Roselle dance studio Lights, Camera, Dancin'. They'll be followed by a 2:30 p.m. show from the School of Rock Schaumburg. At 5 p.m., the Dixon Bandits will play their brand of Southern rock, followed by an 8 p.m. performance from Chicago blues band Howard and the White Boys. Sunday's show features The Last Generation at 5 p.m.
Jilke said Lynfred Winery will be back this year, complementing the festival's beer list with several of its Roselle wines.
Bingo players can look forward to games on each day of the festival, culminating with a 4 p.m. Sunday game that will award a grand prize of $250. Bingo players who play between 6 and 9 p.m. Thursday and who donate a canned good as part of a food drive will receive one free bingo card.
The carnival area also has been enhanced, Jilke said.
"We'll have more rides than we've had in the past," he said.
The long weekend will be capped by the 60th annual Rose Parade, which steps off at 2 p.m. Sunday at Roselle Road and Devon Avenue. Parade units will move east on Thorndale Avenue, south on Prospect Street, and east on Irving Park Road, ending at Lawrence Avenue.
The parade will feature Rose Queen Sarah Abraham and Grand Marshal Don Helmig, of Catering with Elegance, who was named Business Person of the Year by the Roselle Chamber of Commerce, said Gail Croson, the chamber's executive director.
"We'll have village and township officials, fire trucks, marching bands, tumblers, stilts and then local businesses and organizations handing out candy to the children," Croson said. "Of course, there's much more going on including a number of Shriners groups with their motorized vehicles, starting from motorized coolers all the way up to Segways."
A fundraiser for the Roselle Lions Club's philanthropic projects, the Rose Festival usually brings in a healthy crowd provided the weather cooperates.
The festival will remain open unless extreme weather conditions, such as lightning or high winds, threaten.
"I hope the rain has gotten out of our system," he said.
If you goWhat: Roselle Lions Club Rose Festival
When: 6 to midnight Friday; noon to midnight Saturday; and noon to 10 p.m. Sunday
Where: Roselle Metra Station parking lot, Irving Park Road and Maple Avenue