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Calendar of Events

 Let Charleston Tourism help spread the word about community events you are planning
in the Charleston area. Submit event details and contact information 
to for consideration.
All events details are subject to change. Please contact the event directly prior to making reservations.

2015 Calendar

Jan 30-31 & Feb 7 @ 7:30 pm, Feb 1 @ 2 pm Charleston Community Theatre: Fat Pig
An attractive man falls for a bright, funny, sexy young woman who happens to be plus sized; this play critiques our obsession with Hollywood ideals of beauty and questions our ability to change what we dislike about ourselves. Tracy Harpster directs this play by Neil LaBute. (Admission fee required. Phone 217-581-2787 for information and reservations).

Jan 31 - St. Vincent de Paul Society Trivia Night
Moriarty Hall, St. Charles Borromeo Church, 921 Madison Street
Doors open at 6:00pm and competition starts at 7:00pm
Adults $10/ Students $5. Teams of 10 welcome. You may bring snacks and beverages, and food will be available for purchase. Free lemonade and popcorn. Prizes for the best table theme/decorations. All proceeds will help us to assist those in need in our Charleston community. Email to reserve a table or call Newman 217-348-0188 ex. 12 or St. Charles       217-345-3332.

Feb 7 - Charleston Challenge Mid-Winter Classic
Carl Sandburg School, 1924 Reynolds Dr.
Registration begins at 8:00 am
Get ready to run a 5 K - 10 K - 15 K race. Be prepared for all weather condition ~ sun, rain or snow! For information, call (217) 348-0430.  Register online at

Feb 8 - Abraham Lincoln's Birthday Open House 
Lincoln Log Cabin State Historic Site
10:00 am- 4:00 pm 

Feb 13 - Vow Renewal Ceremony
Hilltop Skilled Nursing and Rehabilitation Center
Begins at 2:30 pm
(217) 345-7066

This event is for 12 of Hilltop's residents and their spouses but is also open to the general public. It will be set up just as a wedding ceremony with cake, refreshments, music, and decorations. If a couple would like to participate in the vow renewal just contact Hilltop, but it is open to anyone who wanted to watch without an RSVP.

Feb 13-14  Singing Valentines for Hire
Charleston/Mattoon All Day
Quartets from the Coles County Barbershop Chorus will deliver a box of chocolates and sing a romantic song for your loved one in the Charleston/Mattoon area! Proceeds benefit area high school vocal music programs. For details and to order, go to

Feb 13-14  Valentine's Day Dinner Theater Production – ”Til Death Do Us Part"
Your LifeSpan Center
6:30 pm - Doors open at 6:00 pm

Your LifeSpan Center in conjunction with The Central Illinois Stage Company (CISCo) will be presenting a very special Dinner Theater Production. Tickets for this event are $20 for singles and $35 for couples. Party tables of six can also be purchased for $100.  Dinner is included and will consist of a preshow appetizer, garden salad, an entrée selection of either Angelo’s famous spaghetti or Angelo’s renown lasagna with garlic bread and a dessert. Tickets are available at your LifeSpan Center and can be purchased in advance or at the door. For advanced ticket purchases, please call (217) 639-5150 for more information. Enjoy a night of performing arts, laughter, delicious foods, and complimentary adult beverages! Come and have a fun romantic night out with your special someone! Funds raised from this event will go toward your LifeSpan Center to help with programming and offset daily costs.

Feb 17 - Bowls of HOPE
Moriarty Hall, St. Charles Borromeo Church, 921 Madison Street
5:00 pm – 7:00 pm
Soup supper and hand-crafted bowl $15; or just he soup for $5 plus a FAB-ulous Dessert Auction that is always loads of fun! Plus live music! This fundraiser benefits HOPE's mission to empower people to live independent, non-violent lives by providing HOUSING OUTREACH, PREVENTION & EDUCATION. For more info, call HOPE 348-5931 and "LIKE" us on Facebook!

Feb 20- 21 Tours of Early American Folk Art in East-Central Illinois
Friday 1-5pm & Saturday 9am-noon eGallery
These free exhibition tours are presented in conjunction with the symposium Quanah and Cynthia Ann Parker: The Legend and the History sponsored by EIU’s Booth Library, and are open to the public with free admission. The Friday tours are presented in cooperation with EIU’s Academy of Lifelong Learning.

Feb 28 - Second Annual Preservation Bazaar
Charleston Public Library, 712 6th Street, Charleston, IL
10:00 am - 2:00 pm

The event is free and open to the public. Owners of old buildings are encouraged to attend. Preservation experts will be on hand to discuss historic preservation tax credits, resources for renovating old buildings, city code and historic buildings, gravestone restoration, insulating old homes, re-pointing old masonry, how to "green" your old home, and more. For more information please contact Erin Blitz, Commission Chair, at (217) 348-5333, or Deborah Muller, City Clerk, at (217) 345-8426, and visit the Commission's website at

Feb 28 - 2015 Polar Plunge for Special Olympics Illinois
Lake Sara Beach, Effingham, IL
10:30 am – 2:30 pm

Online registration ( has opened for one of the COOLEST events of the winter – the 2015 Law Enforcement Torch Run Polar Plunge to benefit Special Olympics Illinois. Questions, contact Vanessa Duncan, Area 9 Director, 345-2424,

Feb 28 - Steve Parry presents: The Hayloft Gang.
Lincoln Log Cabin Historical Site
2:00 pm
Narrated by Garrison Keillor, The Hayloft Gang: The Story of the National Barn Dance tells the story of a changing America through the lens of one of the nation's most popular country music radio shows during the 1930s and ‘40s: The National Barn Dance. The one-hour documentary weaves rare performance footage, home movies, and candid photographs with firsthand accounts from fans and performers. Interviews with historians, folklorists, and media experts reveal historical and cultural perspectives of this unique period in America’s history. Uncle Ezra, a popular comedian featured on the show, was a keynote speaker at the dedication of Lincoln Log Cabin State Park in 1936. Stephen Parry, writer, director and producer will have the audience view the documentary in its entirety in the auditorium and answer questions after.

Feb 28 - First Fruits Chili and Soup Dinner ($5)
5:30 p.m. - 7:30 p.m.

First Christian Church, Charleston, IL
First Fruits provides fresh local produce to feed families and individuals, in our community, who are experiencing food insecurity. Motherload plays from 5:30 - 6:30 and raffle tickets will be sold for $5 each. The church is located at 411 Jackson Ave. If you cannot attend consider a donation.

Feb 28 - Violin and Piano Concert
7:30 p.m. at the Doudna Fine Arts Center Recital Hall
Eastern Illinois University

The concert is being presented by the Eastern Illinois University Women's Studies Program, and admission is Free. This year's concert features music from the 19th and 20th centuries written by the German composer Emilie Mayer, the American composer Marion Bauer, and the French composer Mel Bonis.

Mar 6 - Lincoln Log Cabin Foundation Annual Dinner
Social 6:00pm/ Dinner and Program 6:30pm
Ballroom, Unique Suites Hotel,
920 West Lincoln Ave. Charleston, IL
Walt Whitman's Lincoln Join us as we commemorate the death of President Lincoln with the poetry of Walt Whitman performed in first-person by professional storyteller Brian “Fox” Ellis. Whitman’s most famous poems, “Oh Captain, My Captain” and “When Lilacs Last Bloomed” were written as eulogies for our martyred president. After Lincoln’s assassination Whitman gave regular lectures on Lincoln to rave reviews. Ellis recreates a program Whitman delivered on the Life of Lincoln woven with his Civil War poems and recollections of their misty morning encounter during the war. Please join us for an exciting evening of history, food, and fundraising. A silent auction will also be offered. Tickets are $60 per person, a table of eight may be purchased for $420, please reserve your tickets by visiting our website and filling out the form under calendar events, once submitted you can pay for your tickets at our Paypal account from the "donate" button on our home page, or mailing a check to LLCF, 402 South LIncoln Highway Road, Lerna, IL 62440.

Mar 6-15 MID-LIFE! The Crisis Musical
Little Theatre on the Square, Sullivan IL
This wacky musical takes a comic look at the “age old” conditions and situations faced in MID-LIFE!  From reading glasses and mammograms to weekend warriors and proctology exams – all are lampooned with a Saturday Night Live non-sensibility.  Everyone will relate to this hilarious and, at times, touching musical about the curiosities and inevitabilities of middle age.  If you bought some Gingko-Biloba but can’t remember where you put it, then you’re ready for MID-LIFE!

Mar 7 - La Grande Soiree for Sarah Bush Lincoln Health Center
Keller Convention Center, Effingham, IL

(217) 258-2511
Join us for the 31st Annual La Grande Soiree. The semi-formal evening includes social hour, dinner, dancing and a Champagne and Ice event. $75 per person. All net proceeds support the Sarah Bush Lincoln Guild Scholarship Fund. Each year the Guild awards approximately 25 scholarships to local and area students pursuing healthcare careers. To order tickets, please call the Sarah Bush Lincoln Health Foundation at 217-258-2511.

Mar 7 - The Cabinetry of Thomas Lincoln
Lincoln Log Cabin Historical Site: Visitor Center Auditorium
2:00 pm

A presentation by Steve Haaff of Spencer County Indiana with examples of period tools and a reproduction of one Thomas Lincoln's cabinets.

March 7 – 29 2015 Undergraduate All-Student Show                    
Tarble Arts Center Main Galleries & eGallery
This competitive exhibition is open to EIU undergraduates and all art media: painting, printmaking, drawing, sculpture, graphic design, digital art, computer animation, metals, and ceramics.   The art exhibited is selected by a panel of area college and university Art faculty and art professionals.  Co-sponsored by the EIU Art Department and the Tarble Arts Center. 

March 8 - All-Student Show Awards Reception:
Sunday 2-4pm, Atrium
The awards presentation starts at 2:30pm.

March 20-22 & 26-28 Charleston Community Theatre: Daddy’s Dyin’ Who’s Got the Will? 20-21 & 26-28, 7:30pm and 22, 2pm, Atrium
A family reunites as they await the imminent demise of their patriarch; through funny, tense, and touching moments, this play explores the rebirth of the family unit.   Richard G. Jones, Jr. directs this play by Del Shores.  Admission: $10/adults, $8/seniors, $5/students. Phone 217-581-2787 for information and reservations.

March 21-June 7 Southwestern Pottery and Weavings from the Tarble and Area Collections
Brainard Gallery
Featured are Historic Period and contemporary ceramics from the American Southwest and Navajo weavings from the Tarble Arts Center’s study collection complemented by pieces from area public and private collections. This exhibition serves as the basis for the Tarble’s Fifth Grade Enrichment program for area schools April 1 – May 15; presented in cooperation with the EIU Art Education program and underwritten by First Mid-Illinois Bank & Trust.

Mar - 28 Cheese Making Workshop
Lincoln Log Cabin Historical Site: Visitor Center
9:00 am - 5:00 pm 
Spend the day with us and have fun learning a full array of cheese making techniques with instructor Merryl Winstein of St. Louis, MO who has over 22 years' experience in both making and teaching the art of cheese making. After spending the day with Merryl you'll be ready to go home to make all your favorites using either goat's or cow's milk. You'll get your hands right into cheese making, using all your senses to observe the changing textures and aromas which go along with the scientific explanations. Learn the different "clean breaks" for different types of cheese, and find out why correct milk cooling entirely affects the flavor and success of your cheese. You'll also see the correct curd texture at draining, and understand how to monitor and control the acidity, PH, moisture, temperature, and salt, in order to create consistently delicious cheeses. In this workshop you'll be making basic hard-pressed cheeses like the French Tomme, a cloth-bound cheddar, Camembert/Brie, Chevre/Fromage Blanc, Yogurt, Sour Cream, and hand-ladled Ricotta. Reservations required, the cost is 185.00 per participant. 

Apr 4-26 2015 Graduate Art Exhibition     
Main Galleries
This group thesis exhibition presents artwork in a variety of media by the current MA candidates in Eastern’s Studio Art program: Douglas Angulo, Amanda Boyd, Annie Cunningham, Jamie Lovell, Ryan Paluczak, Tom Pekovitch, Rindy Ricketts, Angela Rogers, and Daniel Rohr.  A wide range of styles, media, and approaches will be presented.  Co-sponsored by the EIU Art Department and the Tarble Arts Center. (The Tarble will be closed April 5 for Easter Sunday.)

Apr 8 Artist's Lecture & Exhibition Opening
Wednesday 7pm, Atrium

Nathalie Miebach explores the intersection of art and science by translating scientific data from meteorology, ecology and oceanography into woven sculptures and as performance art. Basket weaving, her main method of data translation, functions as a simple, tactile grid to interpret data into 3-D space. The role visual aesthetics play in the translation and understanding of complex scientific systems is central to her work.  Miebach is the recipient of numerous awards and residencies, including a Pollock Krasner Award, a TED Global Fellowship, and a 2012 nomination for the World Technology Award. Her work has been shown in the US, Europe and Australia and has been reviewed by publications spanning fine arts, craft, design, science and technology. She lives and works in Boston.   The Weather’s Turning Weird… is the 2014-15 Tarble Humanities Exhibition and part of the EIU Center for the Humanities’ investigation of the concept “Authenticity.”

Apr 9 - What Women Want and more
Unique Suites Hotel, 920 W. Lincoln
4:30 pm - 7:30 pm
“What Women Want” has something for every woman packed into one evening. The event focuses on promoting, encouraging, and entertaining women. And, yes, we do know what women want: Wine, Chocolate, Food, Shopping, Fashion, Prizes, Information and Fun! This is what the “menu” looks like for the evening. Start by checking out the lounge in the hotel and pick up a complimentary glass of wine or beer. Move on over to the main banquet room and visit the wide variety of women oriented businesses and services available in the Coles County area. Thirty-five different exhibitors and vendors will showcase beauty products, home items and décor, health and wellness information, spa services, food items, hairstyling, gift ideas, skin care products, children’s fashions, jewelry and much more. 
Tickets for “What Women Want” can be purchased for $20 per person prior to that evening or for $25 at the door. To purchase tickets, call the Charleston Chamber at 345-7041, stop by the office at 501 Jackson Avenue or go online to

Apr 9- May 10 Nathalie Miebach: The Weather’s Turning Weird…

April 10-12 - Our American Cousin and the Assassination of President Lincoln
Located at the Lincoln Log Cabin Historical Site, Visitor Center Auditorium
Directed by Earl Halbe, volunteers will recreate the play President and Mrs. Lincloln attended that fateful evening when the president's life was tragically taken by the assassin John Wilkes Booth. During these dates the site will feature "Draped in Mourning", an examination of mourning customs of the 19th century.

April 11- 2015 Graduate Art Exhibition Reception
Saturday 5pm-7pm, Atrium 

Apr 16 - HOPE's Children's Basket Binga
Charleston VFW
5:00 pm - 8:00 pm
Come join us for food, fun, 50/50 raffle, Longaberger Baskets, door prizes, and silent acution. Earlybird Binga starts at 5:45 pm, Regular Binga at 6:00 pm. For more information, see the flyer or contact Camille Gordon at (217) 348-8815 or 

Apr 16 - Artist’s Lecture: Jason Bly
Thursday 7pm, Atrium
EIU alumnus Jason Bly will be on campus to talk about his art.  States Bly, “My paintings serve as my response to living in an age when simulation occurs so frequently that it is hard to determine when the simulation starts and the ‘real’ ends.” Bly teaches drawing and painting at Southern Illinois University-Edwardsville. Bly holds BA and MA degrees from Eastern, and an MFA from SIUE.  His work has been widely exhibited in the St. Louis metro area.  This program is sponsored by the EIU Art Department.

Apr 18 - Girls on the Run 5K
EIU start outside and finish inside O'Brien Stadium
9:00 am Start Time

Calling all Superheroes! We welcome YOU to walk, skip, or run your way to the finish line! Join in one of the most moving and unique 5k events in the state! This is a non competitive 5k, with a family friendly celebration afterwards. The 5k will start outside and finish inside O'Brien Stadium. Register online at or call Beth with questions: (217) 234-9494.

Apr 18 - Autism Awareness Day
EIU Williams Field on 4th Street 
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April 21- 2015 Graduate Art Exhibition Gallery Talk
Wednesday,11am, Main Galleries
This free program is presented in cooperation with the EIU Academy of Lifelong Learning.

Apr 24 - Graham Slam! - Graham R. Lewis Memorial Poetry Competition
Friday 4pm
Finalists in the annual Graham Slam! (Graham R. Lewis Memorial Poetry Award) perform their work. Awards and reception follow the slam.  Co-sponsored with the EIU College of Arts & Humanities and the English Department; presented in conjunction with 2015 Celebration: A Festival of the Arts.

Apr 24-26 - Celebration: A Festival of the Arts
Eastern Illinois University Campus Doudna Fine Arts Center S. 7th St.
A celebration of a multitude of arts ~ everything from blacksmithing to watercolor, accompanied by live performances and a variety of unique food vendors.  (217) 581-2113

Apr 25 - LifeLinks Casino Night
Mattoon Golf and Country Club, 6700 N. Country Club Rd., Mattoon, IL
Doors open at 6:00 pm and gaming begins at 7:00 pm

Tickets are $25.00 each. You must be 21 years of age or older to attend. Play your favorite Las Vegas style games - Roulette, Texas Hold'em, Blackjack, and Bang - and win cash! This year we are also offering pull tabs and a Lucky Raffle! For tickets or for more info, call 238-5720, stop by our office at 750 Broadway Avenue East, Mattoon, or ask any member of our staff. LifeLinks has been your nonprofit community connection to mental health and wellness for over 50 years! Visit us on the web at "Like" us on Facebook at LifeLinks Mental Health. All proceeds will help us to assist adults and children with mental health.

Apr 25 - Tour de Exchange
Charleston High School, 1615 Lincoln Ave., Charleston, IL
Staggered Start 6:30am - 9:30am

Come and join us for a 25 mile cycling race on Saturday April 25th. Sign up now and receive a t-shirt with registration. $20.00 for Adults, $10.00 for Children, and $60 max per family. After April 17th $25.00 Adults and $12.00 for children. Proceeds benefit local groups that help prevent child abuse. For more information please visit us at or contact Harold Strangman (217)348-8644.

Apr 25 - Art and Antiques at Osage Farm
6558N CR 1320E, Charleston, IL
8:00 am - 3:00 pm

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Apr 25-26 - Children’s Art Activities at Celebration
Noon-4pm, 7th Street (between Tarble and Doudna Fine Arts Center)

A variety of hands-on art make-and-take activities for children as a part of the EIU College of Arts & Humanities’ Celebration: A Festival of the Arts; presented in cooperation with EIU Art Education Association student volunteers with support from Tarble Arts Center membership contributions.


May 2 - Sheep to Clothing Event and Sheep to Shawl Competition
8:00 am - 6:00 pm
Located at the Lincoln Log Cabin Historical Site

iscover how raw wool from the Lincolns' own sheep is turned into finished cloth for use on the farmstead. Watch interpreters as they weave on the site's mid-nineteenth century Sargent and Martin looms, replicating a period coverlet on one loom and weaving "jean cloth" on the other. After the wool is shorn, visitors are encouraged to participate in the hands-on demonstrations including, sorting and washing the wool, teasing and carding it for spinning, and finally spinning the wool into yarn where some of it will end up being knit into items following nineteenth-century patterns. Interpreters and volunteers will also demonstrate dyeing and felting and will showcase the final step in the process where woolen jean cloth is sewn to make pants for Mr. Lincoln.

May 2 - 18th Street Spring Block Party

May 2-24  33rd Children’s Art Exhibition                      
Main Galleries
Presented is art in all media by area school students’ grades kindergarten through high school, selected by the students’ Art teachers, to showcase some of the best creations produced in area Art programs.  The students represent approximately 45 area schools’ programs taught by certified Art teachers.  The exhibition is sponsored in part by Consolidated Communications
and is presented in cooperation with the participating schools’ Art teachers.

May 16 - June 28  Studio Glass: Selections from the William Weber Collection
This exhibition presents glass and related works from some major studio glass artists, including blown/hot-worked glass by Dale Chihuly, cast glass by Latchezar Boyadjiev, fused work by Jon Kuhn, woven glass by Eric Markow and Thom Norris, a filet de verre
(glass thread) vessel by Toots Zynsky, blown glass by Sonia Blomdahl, and works from other contemporary glass studios.  The objects exhibited are on loan from the collection of William Weber.

May 16 - Oct 3: 18th Street Farmer's Market
This makes for a 21 week season. Our location will be in the parking lot of the Coles County Department of Human Services. Vendor fee will be $5 per week for each booth space. This can be paid by the month ($20.00) or $80.00 for the entire season. There will be a discounted rate if you need more than one space. There are a limited number of spaces available. Please contact Steve Runyon if you are interested in participating.

May 17-Children’s Art Exhibition Awards Reception
Sunday 1:30-3:30pm, Atrium
There are three awards programs broken down by participating schools; please contact the Tarble Arts Center for more specific information.

May 31- Northern Suburbs Illinois Lupus 1M/3M Walk
Vernon Hills, Half Day Forest Preserve
Join the Lupus Society of Illinois in a 1M/3M walk in the half Day Forrest Preserve. Each registered participant will receive LSI tee, post-event snack, LSI incentives, entertainment, and more! Registration is $25 for adults and $10 for children and all proceeds benefit LSI. More information call 312-542-0006 or email Create your team and register online today.

June 3 - Charleston Farmer's Market
Square in Charleston, IL
Every Wednesday from 6:30-10:30 a.m. through summer and fall
Fresh produce, baked goods, and homemade music! Come on out and shop locally, play some tunes, and just sit a spell and listen! (Musicians welcome)
For more info on booths, call Mike Knoop (217) 345-8018 at Roc's Blackfront

June 4 – Community Band Concert
Kiwanis Park Amphitheater

7:30 pm – 8:30 pm
For more information, call 345-6897

June 6 - October 3 – 18th Street Farmers Market
825 18th Street, Charleston, IL Saturdays only!!
8:00 a.m. - Noon Parking lot of the Coles County Department of Human Services
The primary focus for the market is fresh produce, baked goods, flowers, and homemade items (as space permits). Live music will be scheduled, adding to the festive atmosphere! This event will go from June 7 through October 4!  Interested vendors or musicians should contact Steve Runyon at 217-345-4700 or by email at

June 11 – Community Band Concert
Kiwanis Park Amphitheater
7:30 pm – 8:30 pm
For more information, call 345-6897

June 13, 2:00 pm: Civil War Saturday: Peace at last! The end of the Civil War
Lincoln Log Cabin Historical Site
Soldiers encampment and mustering out. 

June 18 – Community Band Concert
Kiwanis Park Amphitheater
7:30 pm – 8:30 pm
For more information, call 345-6897

June 25 – Community Band Concert
Kiwanis Park Amphitheater

7:30 pm – 8:30 pm
For more information, call 345-6897

June 26 - Charleston Chamber of Commerce  Annual Golf Outing - "Buy Local-Play Local"
Charleston Country Club
Registration 10:30-11:30 am, Lunch 11 am-Noon, Shotgun Start 12 Noon
Dust off those clubs and get ready for a day of fun in the "Buy Local - Play Local" Charleston Chamber Golf Outing. $100 all-inclusive fee per player includes driving range, putting contest for $5000, 18 holes of golf & cart, mulligans, lunch, giveaways, snacks and beverages on the course, "Beat the Mayor" contest, Par 3 poker, dinner and prizes. Foursomes and individuals are welcomed! Registration form available on (217) 345-7041

June 28 - Red, White, and Blue Days Bingo
North Pavilion, Morton Park, Division and Lincoln Ave., Charleston, IL
2:00 pm - 5:00 pm (217) 345-7691


Jul 1– Jul 5  -  Vietnam Memorial Traveling Wall
Coles County Fairgrounds, State St & E Street, Charleston, IL
In celebration of the 25th anniversary of Red, White and Blue Days, 2015, the Charleston 4th of July committee has secured the AVTT Traveling Wall to be a part of the activities in addition to the annual parade, concerts and other activities.  The American Veterans Traveling Tribute is an 80 percent scale version of the Vietnam Memorial Wall in Washington DC. Across its 360-foot length, the wall contains every single name etched on the original.

Jul 2 - Community Band Concert
Kiwanis Park Amphitheater

7:30 pm – 8:30 pm
For more information, call 345-6897

Jul 3-4 - Red, White, and Blue Days
Morton Park, Division and Lincoln Ave. (217) 345-7691

July 3rd, Friday
1:00 pm Vendors and Activities begin
6:30 pm Opening Band
Farmer of the Year/Little Mr. and Miss
8:00 pm Headliner

July 4th, Saturday
6:30 am Habitat for Humanity Run/Walk
9:30 am Chalk In - Coles County Arts Council
10:00 am Foam Pit & Inflatables
1:00 pm Parade
2:15 pm Bell Ringing
2:30 pm
*Non Profit vendors will be available all day. Foam pit and Inflatables end at 2 pm

July 4 - Fireworks at Coles County Airport
Food vendors on site. Free admission. Handicapped parking available. Shuttle buses running from Charleston and Mattoon. Bring lawn chairs/blankets. No personal fireworks, pets or alcoholic beverages allowed. (217) 345-7120

July 9 – Community Band Concert
Kiwanis Park Amphitheater

7:30 pm – 8:30 pm
For more information, call 345-6897

July 12 - Independence Day Festivities
Lincoln Log Cabin Historical Site
10:00 a.m.- 4:00 p.m.

July 19 - Civil War Saturday-Encore presentation of A Question of Loyalty, a play by Earl Halbe.
Lincoln Log Cabin Historical Site
2:00 p.m.

Jul 25 - Christmas in July Trivia Night - Fundraiser for Christmas in the Heart of Charleston
Location TBD
6:00 pm - 8:00 pm
Gather your friends for a night of Christmas Trivia about music, movies and more! All the proceeds will go towards the Christmas in the Heart of Charleston in December! Teams of up to 6 individuals will compete in 10 categories to see who knows the most about Christmas. The team answering the most questions correctly, will win $100 CASH! Snacks and drinks will be available for purchase! For more information, call (217) 348-0430

Jul 26-Aug 2 – 161st Annual Coles County Fair
Coles County Fairgrounds
For more information call 345-2656 or visiting


Sept 26 - Charleston Challenge Duathlon
Carl Sandburg School, 1924 Reynolds Dr.
9:00 am
This 2 mile run, 19.2 mile bike ride, 2 mile run will test your endurance. Challenge yourself on this hilly and scenic course. There will be team and individual divisions available with prizes in all divisions.
(217) 348-0430

September 26: 18th St Fall Festival
18th St in Charleston
10:00 am – 2:00 pm
(217) 345-4700

September 26-27 - Harvest Frolic Fall Celebration
Lincoln Log Cabin State Historic Site
10:00 am to 4:00 pm
Come celebrate the arrival of autumn at the Harvest Frolic on Saturday and Sunday, September 26 and 27 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. The event is free and open to the public. Don't miss experiencing 19th century life on the farm! Activities will take place at both the Lincoln and Sargent farms and will include children's games, craft and doll making, and hearth cooking. Visitors are encouraged to take part in period games and activities. Volunteers will demonstrate apple cider pressing, and food preservation. A number of artisans will be on site demonstrating their crafts including, woodcarving, flax processing, soap making, embroidery, pottery, basket weaving, blacksmithing, wheat weaving, and tatting. Gerry Barker will bring his oxen, the Unreconstructed Civil War Band will perform, and be sure to catch the puppet show. Don't miss the Frolic 5K! A 5k run and mile walk to kick off the festivities on September 26! Registration details will be added at a later date.

Oct 9-11 - Eastern Illinois University Family Weekend
Eastern Illinois University campus

Pack up the family and check out the family weekend activities, including the EIU Panthers football game.

Oct  24 - Torchlight Halloween Hike, Pumplin Carving Contest, and Wiener Roast 
Lincoln Log Cabin State Historic Site
5:00 pm-8:00 pm 
Join us for our Torchlight Halloween Hike and Wiener Roast where you. won’t want to miss the chance to enjoy Lincoln Log Cabin in the dark! We will start at the Visitor Center for a bonfire and wiener roast. Bring out your best carved pumpkin by 4:30 pm and visitors will judge the best carvings and prizes will be awarded. You will also want to hike the paths between our historic farms by torchlight to hear storytellers in the Lincoln Cabin and Sargent House there to entertain guests with seasonal stories.
To benefit the educational and interpretational programs of Lincoln Log Cabin, the Foundation will be selling hotdogs and s’mores for you to roast over an open fire.

Oct 23-25 - Eastern Illinois University Homecoming
Eastern Illinois University campus and Charleston community
Weekend events include an "all-you-can-eat" sunrise breakfast, homecoming parade, EIU Panther football game, tailgating & MORE!

*** Parade Route - Sat 9:30!***
Starts at 7th and Lincoln Ave.
North on 7th St.; West on Monroe Ave.
South on 6th St.; West on Polk Ave.
South on Division St.
Ends at O'Brien Stadium
Check out for further details.


Nov TBD  Yuletide Tunes & Treats ~ Dessert Buffet, Silent Auction & Music
Charleston Moose Lodge, 615 7th St
5:00 pm – 8:00 pm, auction ends at 7:40 pm
(217) 348-0430

Nov 7 - Charleston Challenge 40 Mile Relay

Carl Sandburg School, 1924 Reynolds Dr.
9:00 am
Divisions include Superman, Dynamic Duo, and Teams
(Male, Female & Open Team Categories)
(217) 348-0430
This event hosted by the Charleston Parks and Recreation Department features 40 miles of fun for up to 4 team members. Team and individual divisions available.

Nov 13 - Charleston Chamber Lootery  “Lucky Friday the 13th
Unique Suites Hotel
5:00 pm - 9:00 pm
Each ticket admits 2 people for fun, food and fabulous cash giveaways. Every tenth ticket wins a cash prize with a Grand Prize of $2,000. For tickets, call (217) 345-7041 Chamber of Commerce.

Dec 5 - Christmas in the Heart of Charleston
Courthouse Square
4:45 pm - 7:00 pm
Holiday parade, carriage rides, refreshments, window displays, entertainment, photos with Santa and much more. Parents are encouraged to bring their own cameras for pictures with Santa. Parade starts at 5 pm. Streets leading to the Square will be closed ~ please park 2-3 blocks off the Square and walk inward. Check out our event page on Facebook under "Christmas in the Heart of Charleston". For more information please call (217) 348-0430.

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