Light the Torch 5K Night Run to cap October Fest

Oct. 1 is a "twofer" in Wheaton when two big events - October Fest and the Light the Torch 5K Night Run - will offer fun, festivities and a chance to welcome autumn with a smile in the city's downtown area.

October Fest, a German-style family festival complete with live bands, kids' activities and, of course, plenty of beer, starts at 4:30 p.m. and rolls on until 10 p.m. at the Central Athletic Complex, 500 S. Naperville Road, Wheaton.

Karla and the Phat Cats will perform from 5 to 6:30 p.m. Get ready to polka when the Wurst Kase Scenario band takes the stage from 7:30 to 9:30 p.m.

Deutschland-themed food choices will include bratwurst, hot dogs, pretzels, burgers and dishes from the Pierogi Rig Food Truck and the Rainbow Cone Food Truck.

Beer available for purchase will include Sam Adams Octoberfest and Revolution Octoberfest, along with Coors Light. Also available will be Angry Orchard Cider, White Claw hard seltzer and wine.

Kids will find rides, crafts with the DuPage County Historical Museum staff, face painting and pumpkin decorating.

Admission to October Fest is free. Donations are encouraged and will benefit the Museum, the event's host.

October Fest is presented by the Wheaton Park District and sponsored by Fairhaven Wealth Management.

October Fest will go on rain or shine; it will only be canceled in the event of severe weather. Check the Wheaton Park District Rainout Line at (630) 410-1020, ext. 41 for updates or visit the Wheaton Park District and DuPage County Historical Museum Facebook pages.

While the October Fest festivities are in progress, the Light the Torch 5K Night Run will take off at 7 p.m. at Reber and East Illinois streets.

Presented by the Wheaton Park District in partnership with the FT Cares Foundation, this timed run starts after the sun goes down and takes runners and walkers through downtown Wheaton.

Runners are encouraged to stick around after the race to enjoy October Fest festivities and the post-race laser light show.

There will be glow giveaways and each participant will receive a collectible run shirt, a finisher medal, and a free beverage after the race. Runners are encouraged to add more glow to the proceedings with necklaces, reflectors and headlamps.

The race can be run either in-person or virtually. Registration fees for the in-person race are priced at $35 to $40; virtual race registration is priced at $30.

Runners can also register at packet pickup from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 29, at the Central Athletic Complex or on race day. A portion of the proceeds will benefit the FT Cares Foundation.

Pets are not permitted in the race; strollers may participate in the last wave of runners. An awards ceremony will follow the race.

Parking for both events is available in parking garages at Wesley and Hale and at Liberty and Cross.

For more information about the Light the Torch 5K Night Run, visit or contact Race Directors Carolyn Wilkin at or Joseph Viso at

More information about October Fest is available at

On Saturday, Oct. 1, Karla and the Phat Cats will open Wheaton's October Fest. a German-style family festival with live bands, kids' activities and more. Courtesy of Karla and the Phat Cats
Wheaton Park District and the FT Cares Foundation are hosting the annual Light the Torch 5K Night Run on Saturday, Oct. 1. Courtesy of Wheaton Park District
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