One of Frankfort’s most beloved traditions returns this fall with a theme celebrating the annual event’s uniqueness and far-reaching influence.

Marianne Melcher, Frankfort Chamber of Commerce executive director, told The Station in an email that this year’s Frankfort Fall Festival, scheduled from Saturday,
Aug. 31, through Monday, Sept. 2, in downtown Frankfort, has a “star fest” theme. About 300 artisans from throughout the country are expected to make an appearance at the event,
selling items ranging from jewelry to ornaments, and the Frankfort Chamber of Commerce anticipates about 250,000 guests will stop by the festival during Labor Day weekend.

“This year’s Fall Fest Chair is Julie Cantrell, and Co-Chair, John Clavio, and we have more than 150 volunteers devoting their time to make this Fall Fest a success,” Melcher
said. “We have an amazing group of volunteers and we could not do it without them.”

While the arts and craft show doesn’t start until the weekend, the carnival, sponsored by the Frankfort Firefighters Association, opens at 5 p.m. Wednesday, Aug. 28, and runs
through 5 p.m. Monday, Sept. 2. Families have the option to either purchase individual coupons for $1.50 apiece, purchase 20 coupons for $25 or buy 50 coupons for $60.

Now in its 51st year, the festival offers something for everyone. Attendees will have the opportunity to listen to live musical performances at the Breidert Green and Garden
stages and sample treats such as kettle corn and bratwurst at the Fall Fest Food Court. On Sunday, Sept. 1, area organizations will participate in the annual Fall Fest Parade,
which kicks off at 1 p.m. at the intersection of Pacific and Maple streets and includes an appearance by the Lincoln-Way Marching Band.

The Frankfort Lions Club will serve as this year’s Grand Marshal in recognition of the group’s community service and assistance to the Frankfort Chamber of Commerce, Melcher said. The club
is scheduled to host the Wurst Fest — a celebration of German food, beer and cultural heritage — at 6 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 29, at the Garden in downtown Frankfort.

Additionally, Melcher said, Sunshine Artist Magazine recently named the festival No. 3 in the country for classic and contemporary craft shows. “This is voted on by the participating artisans,
and it is a huge honor to achieve such a high ranking,” she said.

Residents interested in volunteering at the festival are asked to contact the Frankfort Chamber of Commerce at (815) 469-3356.

For more information on the Frankfort Fall Festival, including a full list of vendors and a detailed schedule of events, visit

Music schedule

Friday, Aug. 30
8:15-11 p.m.: Smooth Sailing, Garden Stage

Saturday, Aug. 31
11 a.m.-1 p.m.: Electric Ave., Breidert Green Stage
1-4:30 p.m.: Related Rhapsody, Garden Stage
2-3:30 p.m.: Loretto Lane, Breidert Green Stage
4:30-6 p.m.: Strung Out, Breidert Green Stage
8 p.m.-11 p.m. Maggie Speaks, Garden Stage

Sunday, Sept. 1
11 a.m.-1 p.m.: Crawford’s Daughter, Breidert Green Stage
1-4:30 p.m.: The Weeds, Garden Stage
2-3:30 p.m.: Phylis Marconi, Breidert Green Stage
4:30-6 p.m.: Briggs Street Band, Breidert Green Stage
8-11 p.m.: Simply Elton, Garden Stage

Monday, Sept. 2
11 a.m.-1 p.m.: Jimmy O & Rhonda Lee, Breidert Green Stage
1-4:30 p.m.: Frankfort Brass Band, Garden Stage
2-4 p.m.: Whiskeyfist, Breidert Green Stage