Sidney festival set for Saturday

Sidney festival set for Saturday

SIDNEY — A parade, car show, food and carnival rides will be among the highlights of the ninth annual Sidney Summer Fun Daze festival set for Saturday.

Proceeds from the festival's car show and poker run will go to the Veterans Affairs Illiana Healthcare System in Danville.

Sidney Improvement Group President Keith Kropp said the organization was chosen, in part, because of recent news stories about veterans suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder.

"There are so many people that use the VA in Champaign County and surrounding counties," Kropp said.

There will be a "fill the trailer" drive at the festival for items like paperback books and current magazines, coffee, new clothing, telephone cards, hygiene products, playing cards, hand-held games and DVDs to be taken to the VA hospital. Monetary donations will also be accepted and will be placed in a fund at the hospital for veterans of Operation Iraqi Freedom and Operation Enduring Freedom.

Throughout Sidney Summer Fun Daze, food will be available. A carnival at the former Sidney Grade School lot — bordered to the north by Main Street (County Highway 15), to the east by Washington Street and to the south by Byron Street — will provide a variety of rides, games and concessions.

Saturday's activities start at 7 a.m. with a pancake and sausage breakfast at the Town Hall, with proceeds going to Sidney ball programs.

A poker run visiting the Rantoul VFW, Gibson City American Legion, Hoopeston VFW and Royal leaves at 11 a.m.; registration is from 9 to 11 a.m. There will be a ride-in bike show back in Sidney from 4 to 6 p.m.

Tykes ages 3 to 8 can compete in a kiddie tractor pull at 11 a.m.; registration starts immediately before the contest.

New this year will be a beanbag tournament, the start of which coincides with the opening of the beer tent at noon; registration is at 11 a.m. All registration fees go toward cash prizes for first-, second- and third-place winners. Games will be limited to 20 minutes each and will be randomly drawn to be placed on a bracket. For more information call Travis Burr at (217) 530-2134.

A car show for all makes and models will be featured from 4 to 8 p.m.; registration is from 2 to 4 p.m. on David Street. Trophies for the top 25 winners and other awards will be presented at 8 p.m. Dash plaques will be given to the first 50 entries. For more information, call (217) 637-2477, (217) 202-8266 or log onto sundownerscarclub.org.

The Twilight Parade line-up starts at 3:30 p.m. at Dunlap Woods, and the parade starts at 4:30 p.m. The parade route starts at Dunlap Woods and travels to Byron Street.

The Heel Draggers, a Danville- and Champaign-based rock and roll cover band, will perform from 6:30 to 8:15 p.m.

Returning this year will be a laser light show starting at 9:15 p.m. in downtown Sidney. It uses laser technology to create images and animations synchronized to music.

"It is very cool," Kropp said. "It's different. I think it really packed the downtown (last year)."

While the laser light show does cost more than fireworks, Kropp said the dry conditions this year would have made a fireworks show too big a fire hazard.

Playing from 9:30 p.m. to 12:30 a.m. will be the southern Illinois rock band 30aut6.

For more information on Sidney Summer Fun Daze, call (217) 722-3339 or (217) 493-0235.

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