Annual Events in Williamson County
Get the Visitors Guide & More! View Travel Guides

Visitors are encouraged to attend and participate in one of our annual events throughout Williamson County.  Celebrate our culture and community traditions at one of our entertainment venues.

January

Polar Bear Ride January 1, 2018
Ring-n the New Year and join The Polar Bear Ride!  Arrive at 10:30am, then kickstands are up & we depart at 11:30am.  Ride route and duration to be determined by the weather.  This event begins held at Black Diamond Harley-Davidson.
 
Ever After Bridal Show January 7, 2018
Buy a dress, pick out flowers and find a photographer all in one place.  Annual event presented by River Radio and held at The Pavilion.
 
Bald Eagle Tours January 20-21 and 27-28, 2018
Three guided tours daily into the closed portion of the Crab Orchard National Wildlife Refuge to view active bald eagles and their nests.  Reservations required.

Hospice Gala January 27, 2018
Benefit gala for Hospice of Southern Illinois.  Dress in your themed attire and enjoy a night to remember.  Sit down meal and after party.  This event is held at The Pavilion. 

February

Southern Illinois Boat & Fishing Show February 2-4, 2018
Boat and tackle dealers from all over the Midwest show off their merchandise.  Daily fishing seminars, live entertainment, door prizes and more.  This event is held at The Pavilion.

Fly with the Eagles Half Marathon February 10, 2018
It’s not often you get to feel like you’re flying.  This flat, fast course winds through the stunning Crab Orchard National Wildlife Refuge, including areas typically reserved for eagles alone.  The course features pavement sections and trips down back roads, always accompanied by plenty of water stations.

Southern Illinois Men's Expo TBD 2018
Join us at the Southern Illinois Men's Expo for health screenings, our expert panel, BBQ and all our interactive vendors.  This event will be held at the Black Diamond Harley-Davidson Event Center.

March

ECA Gun & Knife Show March 3-4, 2018
ECA Hunting and Trade Shows are the largest shows in Illinois, with 20-22 shows held each year statewide.  Choose from a wide variety of guns, ammo, knives, hunting accessories, hi-tech optics, and more at The Pavilion.
 
Leaps and Bounds Kidsignment March 8-10, 2018
This semi-annual seasonal sales event offers great quality clothing for your children at a fraction of the new cost.  At our kidsignment sales, you can buy & sell gently worn children's clothing, toys, baby beds, maternity clothes, shoes, boots, children's furniture, games, and much more.  Each consignor keeps 70% of the sale price.  This event is held at The Pavilion.
 
Crappie USA Super Tournament March 16-17, 2018
Held on Lake of Egypt, this two-day Super Tournament could bring home $10,000+ in prizes.  Pre-tournament seminar will be held at The Pavilion with weigh-in at either Mack's Lake of Egypt Marina or Pyramid Acres Marina.
 
Crappie USA Kids' Fishing Rodeo March 17, 2018
Free event for children 12 and under.  Prizes and activities from 9-11am.  Registration begins at 8am. and will be held at the Elk's Lodge Pavilion on the Lake of Egypt.
 

April

Illinois State Checker Tournament April 7-8, 2018
The 112th Annual Illinois State Checker Tournament pits player against each other at the center court of the Illnois Star Centre Mall in Marion.  The American Checker Federation requires a membership for all participants at ACF sanctioned tournaments.  There will be four rounds played on Saturday and three rounds on Sunday.  There is a 3-move restriction with pairing by a modified Swiss system.

Gem & Mineral Show April 13-14, 2018
Southern Illinois Earth Science Club hosts the annual show to include several types of exhibits featuring minerals, fossils, Indian artifacts, gemstones, jewelry, shells and lapidary work.  Along with exhibits, there will be silent auctions and door prizes.  This event is held at The Pavilion.

River-to-River Relay April 21, 2018
The River-to-River (R2R) race is a popular, annual 80-mile relay race held in Southern Illinois in mid-April.  Two Hundred and forty teams from around the country compete.  The eight members of each team run three cycles of approximately 3.3 miles while maintaining a specific order.  The course starts near the Mississippi River by Wolf Lake, Illinois and proceeds over 80 hilly and curvy miles of two-lane highways to Golconda on the banks of the Ohio River.  Register October 25, 2016.
 

May

Whirlwind Soccer Tournament May 5-6, 2018
Recreational league tournament with over 100 teams competing.  There are games for children of all ages, face painting, concessions, and many more activities to keep everyone busy and having fun.  This event is held at the Marion Soccer Complex.

HerrinFesta Italiana May 21-28, 2018
Voted Illinois' Best Event or Festival in 2014, this week-long celebration of Italian heritage includes a grape stomp, "Bigga Nose" contest, a carnival, and concerts by many world famous recording artists.  This event is held in Downtown Herrin.  For more detailed information on the week long events, go to www.HerrinFesta.com.

Illinois State Quartet Convention May TBD, 2017
This three-day event, is one of the most significant Southern Gospel singing events in the entire state of Illinois.  Quartets, duets and even soloists show off their talents at this annual event held each year at the Marion Cultural and Civic Center.

June

Southern Illinois Music Fest  TBD June, 2018
Southern Illinois Music Festival features over three dozen performances at various venues throughout Southern Illinois.  Professional musicians from North and South America, Europe and Asia perform orchestral and chamber music, opera, ballet, jazz and new music in and informal and inviting atmosphere.  Join in for a great season of music at the Marion Cultural and Civic Center.

Miss Illinois Scholarship Pageant TBD June, 2018
Miss Illinois Scholarship pageant is a part of the Miss America organization.  This scholarship pageant will bring women from all over Illinois to compete for a scholarship and a chance to enter the Miss America pageant.  This event is held at the Marion Cultural and Civic Center.

Highbanks Hustle TBD June, 2018
Now in it's 5th season and becoming the highest paying micro sprint race of the year, this year’s edition will pay out a whopping $10,000 to the #HBH17 champion!  Not only will the winner walk away with his fair share, but the love will be thrown throughout the field as the top eight finishers will score at least $1,000 and all starters gaining a minimum of $500 to start.  This event is held at the Southern Illinois Raceway.
 

July

Stay tuned for information on any upcoming July events.

August

AKC Dog Show August 5-6, 2017
Crab Orchard Kennel Club's annual AKC Dog Show.  There will be special clinics available by appointment, as well as vendors selling dog-related items and concessions.  This event is held at The Pavilion.

Williamson County Fair August 8-12, 2017
The grandstand events still thrill young and old alike and the Saturday Championship Demo Derby is always sold out long before the first car takes to the track.  Local residents bring their arts and crafts for cash prizes and of course bragging rights with the ribbons.  Horsemen have enjoyed harness races on the same track for over a hundred years on the east end of the grounds.  Western, Gaited, and Speed horse shows are well attended.  This event is held at the Williamson County Fairgrounds.

Geneology Society of Southern Illinois Family History Conference August 12, 2017
This book fair/ vendor event also hosts multiple keynote speakers and breakout sessions on geneology and new technologies to help find your family history. This event is held at John A. Logan College.
 

September

Carterville Free Fair Sept. 8-9, 2017
This annual event presented by the Carterville Lions/Lioness Club is held on Labor Day weekend and includes a Twilight 5K run, parade, carnival, games, free entertainment, food and much more.  Come see the Ping-Pong Avalanche and the big wheel races.  This event is held at Cannon Park in Carterville.

Veterans on Parade September 9, 2017
Annual parade held on the weekend of Patriots Day to honor the service and sacrifice of all veterans, past and present.  A "picture brigade" allows military family members to carry a photograph of a loved one who would have marched.  This event begins at the Marion Junior High School and ends at Washington Elementary School.
 
Southern Illinois Women's Health Conference September TBD, 2017
Learn about the health issues that affect your life and allow captivating speakers to inspire you to commit to a healthier and happier lifestyle.  There will be an array of health screenings and exhibits you should find informative and interesting.  You can select 4 breakout sessions to attend.  They are all part of a conference designed to provide women a day to learn more about their health in a relaxed, inviting setting.  This event is held at John A. Logan College in Carterville.
 
Heartland Pet Fest September 16th, 2017
Heartland Pet Fest is an event for all pet lovers and their pets that promote education, innovations and information about pets and pet products.  Proceeds will benefit Wilderwood Service Dogs, a 501c3 organization that trains service dogs for autistic children.  This event is held at the Pavilion.
 
Wonder Water Reunion September TBD, 2017
Annual celebration of the springs, which has been said to have healing powers.  This festival includes a pageant, live entertainment, carnival, parade and much more.  The carnival is held at Creal Springs City Park.
 
Marion Main Street HubFest September 23, 2017
Annual celebration of the "Hub of the Universe" - Marion, Illinois.  People from all over the region converge on Tower Square for a festival that includes live bands, entertainment, food and merchandise vendors, hot dog eating competition, dunk tanks, bounce houses, cornhole, car show, and much more.  This event is held in Downtown Marion.

Southern Illinois Hunting & Fishing Days September 23-24, 2017
Held on the fourth weekend of September, this two-day show includes bass fishing seminars, the Buckskinners Village, High School Bass Classic, Dock Dogs, goose calling competitions, kids shooting and archery, a kids fishing hole, the Outdoor Art and Heritage Show, retriever demonstrations and much more.  This event is held at John A. Logan College in Carterville.

Leaps and Bounds Kidsignment October 5-7, 2017
This semi-annual seasonal sales event offers great quality clothing for your children at a fraction of the new cost.  At our kidsignment sales, you can buy & sell gently worn children's clothing, toys, baby beds, maternity clothes, shoes, boots, children's furniture, games, and much more.  Each consignor keeps 70% of the sale price.  This event is held at The Pavilion.

October

Bandy’s Pumpkin Patch October 1-31, 2017
Open annually from October 1st-31st, the pumpkin patch is host to many family fun activities.  Walk the corn maze, ride the hayride, slide down the slides or play in the corn in the play barn.  If you think you’re a sure shot, take aim with the corn cannon or just sit back by the fire and drink a hot chocolate.  Don’t forget to choose a Southern Illinois grown pumpkin on your way out!

November

Autumnfest November 11-12, 2017
Annual craft fair with over 100 vendors of handmade craft items, food and much more.  This event is held at John A. Logan College in Carterville.

ECA Gun & Knife Show November 11-12, 2017
ECA Hunting and Trade Shows are the largest shows in Illinois, with 20-22 shows held each year statewide.  Choose from a wide variety of guns, ammo, knives, hunting accessories, hi-tech optics, and more at The Pavilion.

Johnston City Hometown Christmas November 25, 2017
Downtown Johnston City will be the place to ring in the holiday cheer.  Hometown Christmas includes tree lighting, carolers, food, parade, and more.

December

Christmas In Carterville December 1, 2017
This annual Christmas celebration encompasses the entire Downtown area of Carterville.  From visits with Santa, hot cider, hot chocolate, chilli, hot dogs, barbeques, ornament making, Candy Land Trail, letters to Santa, to carriage rides, live entertainment, the Christmas Market and more, the downtown streets buzz with excitement.  Carolers, kettle corn, cookies, christmas trees and wreaths help bring people together to celebrate the season.
 
God Bless Us, Every One December 14-17, 2017
Marion’s First Baptist Church presents "God Bless Us, Every One” -A Broadway-Style Musical Sequel to "A Christmas Carol" tells the story of what happened to the character Tiny Tim after he grew up.  This unforgettable Holiday presentation, complete with lavish costumes and sets, is a Christmas delight for the whole family and is held at the Marion Cultural and Civic Center.
 

Upcoming Events

View All
 
text