Rotary GroveFest in Downers Grove Brings Carnival, Live Music, Craft Beer Tasting, and More

Rotary GroveFest is this weekend, June 21-24, 2018! Head to Downtown Downers Grove for this great festival filled with carnival rides, midway games, an impressive live music line-up, a plethora of delicious food, craft beer tasting with no cover charge, and car show. Not only is it non-stop fun, it also helps to support the Rotary Club of Downers Grove who gives back to many non-profits in Downers Grove and surrounding areas. They also give Downers Grove High School Service and Music Scholarships to support our kids. Keep reading for the full schedule and details!

Rotary GroveFest Hours

The fun starts this Thursday with an unlimited ride preview night and the full GroveFest starts on Friday. 

Thursday, June 21: 5:30 pm – 10:00 pm (unlimited ride preview night)
Friday, June 22: Noon – 5:00 pm (unlimited rides only), 5:00 pm – 11:00 pm (full fest)
Saturday, June 23:  Noon – 11:00 pm
Sunday, June 24: Noon – 10:00 pm (Festival of Cars on Warren Avenue 11:00 am – 3:00 pm)

Rotary GroveFest Carnival and Midway

You will not want to miss out on the many rides that will be provided by North American Midway Entertainment. Bring the entire family to enjoy the rides and take a mini vacation to Rotary Club of Downers Grove’s Annual Rotary GroveFest!

The featured carnival rides include the following for each age group…

Big Kids

  • Century Wheel
  • Himalaya
  • Freak Out
  • Rainbow
  • Pharoahs Fury
  • Starship
  • E7 Tilt
  • Tornado

Little Ones

  • Crystal Castle
  • Wacky Mouse
  • Combo Cars
  • Freefall
  • Mini Jets
  • Safari Rescue
  • Mini Himy
  • Balloon Race


  • Ferris Wheel
  • Carousel
  • Fun Slide
  • C Zone

Hours for Unlimited Rides

Unlimited Rides wristbands are available at certain times each and every day for $25.

Thursday, June 21: 5:30 pm – 10:00 pm “Sneak a Peek”!
Friday, June 22: Noon – 5:00 pm
Saturday, June 23: Noon – 5:00 pm
Sunday, June 24: Noon – 10:00 pm

You can save $5 per wristband for unlimited rides and purchase them online for $20 by clicking on the banner graphic below, then just print your voucher and bring it with you to be scanned at Rotary GroveFest to receive your wristband.

Regular Ticket Prices

Each ride requires between 2-4 coupons.

1 coupon: $1.25
22 coupons: $25
55 coupons: $60

North American Midway’s ticket policy is to accept ANY pre-purchased tickets.

Live Music at Rotary GroveFest

The Advocate Good Samaritan Hospital Main Stage at Downers Grove Rotary GroveFest comes alive at 5 pm on Friday June 22, 2018. The $5 cover charge is good for the entire weekend!

All of the live bands all weekend are located on The Avocate Good Samaritan Hospital Stage, in the Wenzel Select Properties Entertainment Area.

The Platinum Partners Beer Garden serves 8 different brands of beer, including a gluten free option, and numerous types of wine. Drink tickets are $5 for beer or wine.

These three large sponsor areas are located in Downtown Downers Grove at the railroad tracks between Main and Forest.

Sensory Garden Playground Play Days

Live Music Schedule

Friday, June 22: 5:00 – 11:00 pm
Saturday, June 23: Noon – 11:00 pm
Sunday, June 24: 11:40 am – 10:00 pm

Friday, June 22

5:00 – 6:30 pm
Voted best R&B band in Chicagoland! Great music and showmanship: R&B, funk & soul, from Motown to the 21st century. Highly respected band members have played and recorded with Survivor, Mavis Staples, Buddy Guy and the Doobie Brothers. If you can’t dance to this band, check your pulse!

The Millennials
7:15 – 8:45 pm 
Hi-energy young band of highly skilled musicians that’s played festivals and clubs throughout the Chicago Metro area since 2015. The band is female fronted and covers Arctic Monkeys, Led Zeppelin, Pink, Fleetwood Mac, Janis Joplin, Amy Winehouse, Prince, Bon Jovi, Walk the Moon and much more!

Sixteen Candles
9:30 – 11:00 pm
Sixteen Candles makes it their personal duty and pleasure to bring all the great 80’s songs you love to life in full force. They captivate audiences and inspire new ways of dancing and thinking (not to mention drinking!). The members are 5 fun-loving guys with a simple love for the music of years gone by and a mission to fuse nostalgia and style to create a sight/sound spectacular unlike any other.

Saturday, June 23

Grateful Gary’s Magic Bus
Noon – 2:00 pm
Gary returns with an expanded six-piece band playing retro-themed music ranging from Beatles to the Grateful Dead and a repertoire of over 600 songs! A Warrenville native, he’s played festivals, clubs, and private parties throughout the Chicago and Wisconsin areas for two decades. He’s toured the country with a Grateful Dead tribute band, and has shared stages with Little Feat, David Grisman, Jason & the Scorchers, and local favorite Mr. Blotto.

2:45 – 4:15 pm
An upbeat cover and energetic original rock band from Elmhurst, IL that has played countless shows across Chicagoland over the last 13 years. Valius is a 5-piece rock act playing truly great songs from 60’s to today. It’s a fusion of innovative harmonies, virtuoso guitar riffs, and transcendent rhythms that bring it all together. From the Beatles to Foo Fighters, Aerosmith to Red Hot Chili Peppers, and not the same top-40 stuff over and over either. Come see an original spin on some of the greatest rock songs in history!

Modern Day Romeos
5:00 – 6:30 pm
Every weekend for the past decade, Modern Day Romeos has remained THE quintessential party band! Its six members have come together from different musical backgrounds to create the most fun and high-energy show you can experience. Motown classics, classic rock jams, 80’s favs, 90’s gems, and the tops of pop, dance and rock of the 2000’s. They alter most of the songs with their own style, and add a lot of comedy and medleys to make your favorite songs new to you again!

Splish Splash in these Splash Pads in the Southwest Suburbs

The Pack Drumline & Dance Crew
6:30 and 8:45 pm
Two show-stopping between-the-bands spectacles designed to leave the crowd speechless! Mixing together energetic rhythms, dance, and melodies with a twist of theatrics, this is a show you’ll be running home to tell your friends about!

Wild Daisy
7:15 – 8:45 pm
Wild Daisy is THE most energetic, dynamic female-fronted country band in Chicagoland! The band plays current, upbeat country, with a few pop/rock songs thrown in. Wild Daisy established a reputation in Chicago for crowd-interactive, entertaining shows, with musicianship and energy that cannot be matched, and are composed of some of Chicagoland’s most seasoned and talented musicians. Krissi Woods, with her powerhouse vocals and cheerful personality, fronts the band with an energy and enthusiasm that is infectious!

7th heaven
9:30 – 11:00 pm
Chicagoland rock/pop band is one of the biggest and busiest indie bands in the world. They’ve charted #1 on Billboard’s Midwest Charts three times in the last three years! Playing over 250 shows a year, with an average of 100 outdoor events and amazing laser shows, they’ve earned the right to say “We’ve seen a million faces and rocked them all!”

7th heaven performance at GroveFest 2017

Sunday, June 24

Local Dance Academies
11:40 am – 12:45 pm

Rock Academy
1:15 ‒ 2:00 pm

Garage Band U
2:30 ‒ 3:15 pm

American English
4:00 – 5:30 pm
American English is simply the best Beatle tribute story of our time. The fantasy lives on with these remarkable musicians who take the music to the highest level possible. American English is the closest you will ever get to reliving The Beatles. Whether you grew up with the Fab Four or not, this show will be your window to the past. Witness “The Complete Beatles Tribute” with American English!

The Boy Band Night
6:15 – 7:45 pm
Paying homage to the many iconic groups we know today, The Boy Band Night brings America’s only live tribute to pop sensations like The Backstreet Boys, *NSYNC, New Kids On The Block, Boys II Men, One Direction, and many more! These top-tier musicians bring a musical and visual experience with note-for-note representations of all of your favorite songs accompanied by the signature choreography from the music videos we remember. The Boy Band Night is EVERYTHING Boy Band!

Semple Band
8:30 – 10:00 pm
Fronted by one of the city’s most prominent lead singers and the band’s namesake, Keith Semple, every show is guaranteed to be a nonstop entertaining combination of musicianship and high energy stage performance! Each show features a variety and contrast of styles, including the Beatles, Rolling Stones, Michael Jackson, 70’s rock, party songs and alternative/punk rock. Plus, they feature their own original songs!

Bands and schedule subject to change due to unforeseen circumstances.

Main Street Food and Expo

Food & Expo Hours

Friday, June 22: Noon – 11:00 pm
Saturday, June 23: Noon – 11:00 pm
Sunday, June 24: Noon – 10:30 pm

Giddy Up for Arlington's 2019 Family Days!

Main Street will be packed full of delicious food and helpful business booths!

Food Booths featured at Rotary GroveFest 2018 include May Cape Crab Cakes, Jimmy’s Italian Ice, Dippin Dots, Salt Creek BBQ, George’s Fun Foods, The Marines, Lee Concessions, Genoa Italian, Barones Pizza, Mylos Greek Foods, Nothing Bundt Cakes, Something Sweet Lemonade, City BBQ, US Food King, RP Concessions, Skuttlebutts, Mojo’s East Coast Eats, Wells Street Popcorn, Every Day’s A Sundae, and White Castle.

Business Booths include Renewal by Anderson, Retire Well, DeMoullin Family Chiropractic, Bernardo Kitchen & Bath, Lewis University, Amalgam Martial Arts, Future Vision Property Inc., Fun Promotions, Shower Me With Bags, Avery Coonley School, Midwest Gutter Guard, Downers Grove Christian School, Versa5 Dance Studio, Real Time Pain Relief, Elite Remodeling Group, Andy Herrero State Farm, Maple & Main, Pure Chiropratic, AAA Chicago, West Suburban Bank, Rhino Shield, Pro Dental, Oak Trace, Early Education Enrichment Musician’s Workshop, True Balance Karate, Illinois Energy Windows and Siding, Foot Path Trading Co., Leaf Filter, Baird & Warner Real Estate, Bath Planet, MasterShield Gutter Protection, Celebrity Dance Studio, Bath Fitter, Bernardo Kitchen & Bath, Realty Executives Grove, Downers Grove Twp Republican Organization, Thrivent, Chicago Tribune, Chiro One, Orangetheory Fitness, Queen of Pain Relief, Coldwell Banker Downers Grove, New York Life Insurance, EVERDRY Waterproofing, Prohome 1, St. Mary of Gostyn Cathloic Church, and Allstate.

Craft Beer Tasting at the BeerFest

Tired of the high priced cover charge to go and taste new and different craft beer from local area breweries? There’s NO COVER for the Local Craft BeerFest at Downers Grove Rotary GroveFest on Saturday June 23, sponsored by Emmett’s Brewing Company!

The Craft BeerFest will feature more than 20 different craft beers from local crafters, including Emmet’s Brewing Company, Alter Brewing Company, Church Street Brewing Company, Noon Whistle Brewing, Revolution Brewing, Skeleton Key Brewing Company, and more!

Craft BeerFest Hours

Saturday June 23, 2018: 
Noon – 4:00 pm

No admission fee!
[3] 5 oz. Tasters for $5.00

Rotary GroveFest Car Show: Festival of Cars

The Car Show includes

  • Access to Rotary GroveFest – food, rides, entertainment
  • DJ Dennis ‘The Big Bopper’
  • Various Trophy-Plaque Classes
  • Dash Plaques
  • Split-the-Pot $$$
  • Some changes in Car Classes, including a new CORVETTE class.

Festival of Cars Hours

Sunday June 24: 8:00 am set up for Cars/Owners
Show opens to spectators from 11:00 am – 3:00 pm

Spectators are free.
Gate opens at 8:00 am and closes at 11:00 am for car entry. If you would like to participate with your car, the registration fee is $20. (Click here to register.)


From the North

  • Ogden Ave to Main St Downers Grove
  • South on Main St to Franklin
  • West on Franklin to Forest
  • South on Forest to Warren

From the South

  • North on Lemont Rd. (Main St. – Downers Grove)
  • Turn West on Maple Ave. to Carpenter St.
  • Turn North on Carpenter St. to Curtiss St.
  • Turn East on Curtiss to Forest Ave.
  • Turn North on Forest to entrance at Warren Ave.

Click here for our full guide to summer festivals in the western suburbs.

About the Author

Annie Tandy
Annie loves making great memories with her kids and started Kidlist so she can help others do the same! Besides finding fun and exciting things to do, Annie, her husband, and their kids enjoy caring for their chickens and hanging out with them in the backyard. Click here to read about Annie's chickens and see pictures! She also finds joy in gardening, home improvement projects, knitting, soap making, and painting along with being active in her community, church, and as a board member of the Western Springs Business Association. Click here to follow Annie on Instagram.

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