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April affairs

Area events in East Central Illinois

by Kaitlyn Conrad/Photo & Web Editor

April is hopping right into this spring season. East Central Illinois has some events to keep you on your toes. So get out the calendar and start marking away!


Photo from the 2013 Ebertfest, held in Champaign. Photo taken by and courtesy of Thompson McClellan

  • Come experience Allerton After Dark and see Allteron Park in Monticello in a whole new light on Apr 4. The Trail-Glo 5K will start and finish near the Visitor Center. This new event is being hosted by the Allerton Trails Half Marathon and 10K Race. Participants will follow illuminated trail markings under a waxing crescent moon, accumulating extra glow as they go. All proceeds go to Make-A-Wish Foundation of Illinois. To get more information about this 5K, call 217-333-3287 or visit
  • On Apr. 5, Effingham will host the Blessing of the Bikes. People should meet at the Harley Barn at 8 a.m. From there, they will travel through Effingham and make their way to the Cross to have their bikes blessed. You can contact the Harley Barn for more information and you can visit them online at
  • At the Presidential Half Marathon on Apr 5, participants can run 13.1 miles where Lincoln walked. They will be able to immerse themselves in Lincoln history and enjoy a scenic run past the only home he ever owned, his law office, the Old State Capitol, and his final resting place in Oak Ridge Cemetery. Proceeds from the race support the shipment of medical supplies to developing nations by Hospital Sisters Mission Outreach. Check out for more information about this event.
  • The Effinghman Farmer’s Market will begin on Saturday, Apr. 5. The Farmer’s Market runs every Saturday from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. till Oct. 25. It is located in downtown Effingham on Jefferson Street. The Effingham Farmer’s Market includes tons of fresh and local foods, homemade crafts and live music. has more information about the Farmer’s Market.
  • The 2014 Boneyard Arts Festival will be happening Apr. 10-13 in Champaign. It is more than a traditional arts walk; the Boneyard is a unique countywide celebration that takes place in over 100 venues and features that work of local sculptors, weavers, painters and photographers, as well as musicians, actors, dancers and other performers. Check out for more information or call 217-351-9841.
  • Apr. 11-13, Aladdin Jr. will be put on by The Little Theatre On The Square in Sullivan. The audience will be able to see all of their favorite Disney characters in a musical adventure filled with magic, mayhem and flying carpet rides. For ticket information, call The Little Theatre at 217-728-7375 or visit them online at
  • Gavin DeGraw will be at the Effingham Performance Center on Apr. 16. Many know him for his hit singles, “I Don’t Want To Be,” “Follow Through,” and “Chariot.” You can find out more information on DeGraw at and you can find ticket information at
  • The U of I Credit Union will be hosting a concert series at Allerton Park. The Allerton Barn Dance will be held at the Allerton Music Barn on Apr 18. Food and drink will be served from 5:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. Hootanny Bluegrass Acts include BowDacious String Band from 6-7 p.m., Sam Payne and Friends from 7-8 p.m. and The Curses 8-9 p.m. More information can be found at
  • The 11th Annual Spores N More Mushroom Festival in Shelbyville will happen Apr. 18-19. Come and enjoy the thrill of the hunt for the elusive morel mushroom or come and bid at the auction. If you like morels but not the hunt, come to the auction and bid for your winning batch. The 2014 hunt and auction will be based out of Sullivan’s Wyman Park. Visit the events website,, to view a whole list of events and details.
  • Starting Apr. 19 through Jun. 1, the Hometown Teams Smithsonian Exhibit will be in Mattoon. It will include national and local tributes to those of the “Hometown Teams.” Check out or call 217-258-6286 for a full schedule of event.
  • The 16th Annual Ebertfest will be held in Champaign Apr. 23-28. Created by Roger Ebert, a native to Champaign-Urbana, this popular film festival celebrates those “overlooked” films like the ones Ebert championed throughout his career. Held at the historic Virginia Theatre, the festival is five days, and features over a dozen films. Patrons can purchase festival passes or tickets for individual showings. For ticket pricing and more information, visit
  • Apr. 25, The Oak Ridge Boys will be at the Effingham Performance Center. They have 40 years of four-part harmonies and they have one of the most distinctive and recognizable sounds in the music industry. Ticket information can be found at or by calling 217-5540-2788.

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