Scaring up a good time at Monticellobration — Festifall

Scaring up a good time at Monticellobration — Festifall

It's not technically fall yet, but the orange and brown colors are already out in Monticello, where Monticellobration — FestiFall arrives Saturday with scarecrows and pumpkins, as well as classic cars and some bands.

The pretty-darn-lifelike scarecrows are already up around the courthouse square, more likely to scare off birds than the guy in "The Wizard of Oz" ever did.

The celebration has focused on trains in past years, given that the Monticello Railway Museum is only a few miles from Main and State.

Monticello Main Street is putting it all together, but everyone in this village of about 5,500 is pulling together, said Kerry Redshaw, the organization's director.

"About 20 scarecrows are already up, so everyone is starting to get into the experience, the spirit," Redshaw said.

For the pet parade, sponsored by the Piatt County Animal Shelter, participants can line up at 10:45 a.m. at the shelter and step off at 11 a.m.

The Monticello Area Arts Council is creating Paint the Town. Artists of all ages will be painting on Washington Street from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

For a $5 donation to the Arts Council, you can create a masterpiece on the street — all paints and supplies are provided.

Paint the Town is the primary fundraiser for the arts council; all proceeds go toward its scholarship fund, an annual $500 award given to a Piatt County graduating senior pursuing a career in the arts, said the council's Mandy Gleason.

The Sundowners Car Club will feature a car show on Independence Street.

Vice president Rich Rutherford said at Anything With Wheels, "you can literary bring out anything."

"We've had people bring out kids' wagons, go-karts, bicycles — we even had a guy come out with a Jet Board — and of course a lot of classic cars. Mine is a 1968 Chevy II Nova," he said.

Registration ($10) starts at 10 a.m.; the show runs noon to judging at 4 p.m.

"There will be close to 100 cars in Monticello on Saturday; thousands go through to check it out," Rutherford said.

Redshaw said the schedule also includes the Canvas and Corks paint tent on the square, as well as pony rides and horse and buggy rides from Fair Hopes Farms near Arthur.

"Kids can run off their energy in the bounce house," she said, or create massive bubbles with Joyful Bubbles.

Redshaw said restaurant cookouts, food trucks, baked goods and more vendors and activities around the Square are part of the day.

New vendors, Redshaw said, include Twin Silos Orchards, offering a demonstration bee hive for its honey-based products; and Sundrop Alpacas, where fleece will be spun into yarn.

Music during the day is provided by Bad Medicine.

Evening activities kick off about 6 p.m. with 3 Gun Whiskey on the stage. Founded in 2016 by a group of musicians from the Monticello/Bement area, 3 Gun Whiskey covers country music both modern and classic.

Longtime local favorites Feudin' Hillbillies will close out the evening from 8:30 to 10 p.m. or so.

For more information, contact Monticello Main Street at

They're just hanging out

Those scarecrows? They're for a good cause.

The Scarecrow Walk is a fundraiser for Willow Tree Missions for victims of domestic abuse, said an organizer, Kerry Redshaw.

Lampposts around town were reserved for $25, with those proceeds going to the Willow Tree Mission, she said.

Monticello Main Street supplied the cross bars, zip ties and straw. Willow Tree provided a $10 voucher to the Willow Tree Mission to buy supplies.