Coles County Community Events September 2019


January – December on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 6 – 7 am and 7:30 – 9:30 pm in the McAfee gym on EIU campus for ages 12 and older. Join Kevin Hussey for an opportunity to play badminton with family and friends. Multiple courts are available. FREE! No registration is required. Dates and times subject to change. For more information, contact the City of Charleston office at 217-345-5650.


First Wednesday or Thursday of every month, 10-11:30a.m. or 1-2:30p.m. at the Douglas-Hart Nature Center for Mixed Ages (Ages 5-9) Advanced Ages (10-15). Fee – $13/ Non-Member $9/ Member (Price is per child, semester rate) .

2019 Fall topics are:

September 4 & 5: Hummingbirds

October 2 & 3: Big Cats

November 6 & 7: Madagascar

December 4 & 5: Raptors

To register, call 235-4644 or visit

C.A.R.E. Club

3rd Thursday of every month, 4-6pm at Douglas-Hart Nature Center. Ages 12-17 – Free! Douglas-Hart Nature Center is looking for members for our new Caring for Animals with Respect and Education (C.A.R.E.) Club! C.A.R.E. Club members will learn basic care and handling skills for turtles, salamanders, rabbits, and more! Members who meet volunteer goals will earn a free t-shirt and become Certified Animal Handlers at DHNC. To register, call 235-4644 or visit


First Friday of every month, 10a.m. at the Douglas-Hart Nature Center open to the whole family. Fee – $1/Non-Member, Free/Member. We are budding naturalist who love plants and animals….this lap sit program is perfect for children 2-5 and their adult. From puppets to songs to dance and books, our little ones will be immersed in nature for great learning fun. When weather permits, class may go outside for even more exploring! Registration encouraged. Topics of the months are as follows:

September: grasshoppers

October: bats

November: snakes

December: porcupine

To register, call 235-4644 or visit

Mattoon Farmers Market    

Open every Friday, Spring through Fall, from 8:00 a.m. until 1:30 p.m., or while supplies last. This event is held at Lytle Park. For more information, visit

18th Street Farmer’s Market

Every Saturday through September 29th from 8am-Noon at the Coles County Health Department parking lot in Charleston. Vendors offer fresh produce, flowers and plants, handcrafted items, baked goods and more.

Fit-2-Serve Community Garden

Every Saturday from 9-11am at 520 South 5th Place in Mattoon. Come volunteer some time out in the sun, learn to plant and watch it grow!

AMC Sensory Friendly Films

2nd and 4th Saturday each month at AMC Theatre. AMC is proud to partner with the Autism Society to offer unique movie showings where we turn the lights up, and turn the sound down, so you can get up, dance, walk, shout or sing! Please check your local theatre listings for specific showtimes, and don’t forget to share your family fun with #AMCSensoryFriendly.

HOPE You Got Talent

The 1st annual talent competition benefitting HOPE of East Central IL is open to all ages. Auditions are open from May 15th-September 1st. All acts are welcome to submit an audition video. Online voting will be from August 1st-September 14th will determine acts that will perform LIVE on September 28th at Dvork Hall starting at 7pm. The Grand Prize winner will receive a trophy and $500 cash and 2nd place will receive a medal and $250 cash. For more information, email

CIL-CON Cross County Mall

September 6th-7th at the Cross County Mall in Mattoon. For more information, call 258-8513 or visit

Owl Be Seeing You

September 6th from 1-3pm at the Douglas-Hart Nature Center. Owls are sometimes referred to as wise old owls or birds of mystery and folklore, but what’s the real story behind these birds of prey?  In this fall themed class, participants will learn about owls of Illinois through hands-on material followed by a nature inspired owl craft using natural and up-cycled materials. Fee: $12 per member, $13 per non-member. Call 581-5114 to register by 9/3/19.

Coles County Cop Chase – GLOW Run

September 6th at 7:30 pm at the LifeSpan Center. Sign up for the annual Coles County Cop Chase – GLOW Run! The event includes a 1 mile fun run/walk starting at 7:30pm and a 5k at 8pm. To receive a t-shirt you must register by Monday, Aug. 19.  To register, visit or call 217-639-5150.

GRANDPARENT’S DAY                        

September 8th from 10a.m.-Noon at the Douglas-Hart Nature Center. Free for the whole family! Participate in activities from the Project Learning Tree Nature Activities for Families booklet. This is a FREE event that includes family activities, make and take tree slice tic-tac-toe boards, and light refreshments. It will be a tree-rrific way to celebrate Grandparents Day! Donations appreciated. Proceeds will go towards keeping the Douglas-Hart Nature Center and Environmental Education Association of Illinois sustainable. For more information, call 235-4644 or visit

Line Dancing

September 9th at the Cross County Mall in Mattoon. For more information, call 258-8513 or visit

Homeschool Game Club       

September 12th from 2:00 PM – 4:00 PM at the Mattoon Public Library 2nd Floor. For more information, call 234-2621 or visit


September 13th from 9a.m. – 3p.m. at the Douglas-Hart Nature Center. Free for the whole family! Celebrate the man who wrote classic children’s books like Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, James and the Giant Peach, the BFG, and more! Roald Dahl let his imagination run wild in his children’s books, and now it is your turn. Craft, game, and activity centers inspired by his books will be set up in the Discovery Den for your family to enjoy at your own pace. Come and go as you please! For more information, call 235-4644 or visit

PEO Rummage Sale

September 13th-15th at the Cross County Mall in Mattoon. For more information, call 258-8513 or visit

Car Show

September 14th from 10am-2pm at the LifeSpan Center. Event is FREE to the public and will take place rain or shine. There will also be a 50/50 raffle, door prizes and the Don Sol food truck will be on site from 11am-2pm. For more information, call 639-5150.

Make and Take           

September 14th from 10:30am – 4:00pm, or while supplies last, at the Charleston Library. Kids under eight, please bring a grown-up to help. Drop in to make one, some, or all of our crafts, then take them home! For more information, call 345-1514 or visit


September 14th at 2p.m. at the Douglas-Hart Nature Center. Free for the whole family. Join us for an afternoon learning about Monarch Butterflies and their host plant, milkweed! Kirby and Cindy Pringle of Dogtown Artworks will share their two newest movies about monarchs: “Planet Milkweed” and “The Imperfect Caterpillar”. “Planet Milkweed” looks at the amazing amount of life that lives on or around a milkweed plant (14 minutes, 2019). There are more than 450 insects that live upon and eat common milkweed — far more than any other prairie plant. “Planet Milkweed” has just been selected to make its film festival debut in the upcoming “Germinate Film Festival” in Hillsboro, Ohio, which takes place in mid-August. “The Imperfect Caterpillar,” is based on a true story and features a talking caterpillar that is unsure as to whether it will become a monarch butterfly. It is aimed at children (12 minutes, 2019). To register, call 235-4644 or visit

ROSC Family Fun Day

September 14th from 3-5pm at Lytle Park, Green Pavilion. Come enjoy a FREE meal, lots of fun games (for kids and adults), door prizes, and more!

Grand Prairie Friends and Warbler Ridge Hike 

September 18th from 3:30-5pm at the Charleston Library.  Enjoy a photographic journey on Wednesday (followed by an on-site guided walk on Thursday), of Coles County’s newest natural area.  Join photographer and GPF Board Member, Fred Delcomyn, as he uses his photography to highlight the unique land forms, plants and animals of Warbler Ridge.  Warbler Ridge Conservation area, located between Lake Charleston and Fox Ridge State Park, began when a private non-profit conservation organization, Grand Prairie Friends (GPF), purchased a 141-acre site in 2012. Seven years later, the site has grown to 1,000 acres and now includes nine acres of restored wetland, thousands of new trees and ten miles of trails for the public to enjoy along the meandering Embarras River.

September 19th from 10-11:30am, Sarah Livesay will lead a guided walk at the Warbler Ridge site.  Fred Delcomyn will join the group on the walk ready to give photographic tips to those who want them.  Participants should wear appropriate outdoor shoes and clothing and be prepared for one hour of moderate walking.

Both events are FREE and open to the public. For more information, visit

Library Legos

September 19th from 4pm – 5pm at Charleston Library, Rotary Room A for youth in grades K-8. Kids under eight, please bring a grownup. If you love Legos, join us as we build together, take on challenges, show off building skills, and just have fun. For more information, call 345-4913 or visit

Sports Card Show

September 20th-22nd at the Cross County Mall in Mattoon. For more information, call 258-8513 or visit

Line Dancing

September 23rd at the Cross County Mall in Mattoon. For more information, call 258-8513 or visit


Grand Opening! Join us on September 25th, 4-7p.m. at the Douglas-Hart Nature Center to celebrate trees and shrubs!

With funding through the Lumpkin Family Foundation and Illinois Clean Energy Community Foundation, we were able to update our interpretive signs and add additional benches throughout the trails. We now have 73 trees and shrubs labeled with uniform signs that display the common name, the scientific name, and a distinctive feature (leaf, flower, or fruit) that aids in identification of the tree. These signs will be heavily used by the education team during naturalist programs.

The Grape Vine Cutting Ceremony will be at 4p.m.

FREE Dinner at 5:15pm (Served until gone)

Raffle drawing at 6:45pm

Event held Rain or Shine!

Activities Near The Visitor Center:

· Welcome Table (Be sure to pick up your passport and scavenger hunt to enter raffle drawing)

· Jaw Saw raffle for Adults

· Nature fun gift basket raffle for Youth

· Learn how to use native plants in your landscaping @ Butterfly Garden

· Adult and child crafts @ Outdoor Classroom

· Dinner @ Visitor Center

Activities Along The Trail Include:

· EIU Herpetology Club with live animals @ Picnic Area

· Coles County Bat Research table @ Woodpecker Way

· “From A Tree” table with youth activities @ Thrush Trail

· Bird Watching @ Wetland Gazebo

· And more!

For more information, call 235-4644 or visit

Teen Event    

September 27th from 2:00 PM – 5:00 PM at the Mattoon Public Library Programing Room. Join us for a homeschooling game event for teens. For more information, call 234-2621 or visit

Trojan Booster Club – Grill on the Hill        

September 27th from 4:00 PM-7:00 PM. The Charleston Trojan Booster Club will be hosting the annual Grill on the Hill! There will be a block party that includes live remote from 104.3 “The Party,” Freddy’s Custard, Lemon Shakeups, face painting and much more.  There will also be a meal and entry into the first home football game at 7 PM for $7.00. For more information call the CHS office at (217) 639-5000.

Lincoln Log Cabin – Harvest Frolic Fall Celebration        

September 28th-29th beginning at 10:00 AM at the Lincoln Log Cabin. Come celebrate the arrival of autumn at the Harvest Frolic on Saturday and Sunday, September 28 and 29 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, spinning, soap-making, embroidery, pottery, broommaking, blacksmithing, and many other 19th-century crafts. The Unreconstructed String Band will perform, storyteller Brian “Fox” Ellis will be here on Sunday, the Clockwork Clown will be returning, dulcimer playing, and be sure to catch the 19th-century magic show.

Don’t miss the Frolic 5K! 

“The Frolic Fun Run/Walk kicks off on September 28th at 7am at the Lincoln Log Cabin State Historic Site’s annual fall festival celebrating 19th-century rural life with artisans, musicians, performers, and food. Proceeds benefit the Lincoln Log Cabin Foundation in support of educational programming, events, exhibitions, and preservation projects at Lincoln Log Cabin State Historic Site. Visit for more information!

Book Sale- Community Room           

September 28th from 8:00 AM – 5:00 PM at the Mattoon Public Library. For more information, call 234-2621 or visit

Arts in the Cemetery              

September 28th from 10:30am-5pm at the Charleston Public Library in the morning, Roselawn-Mound Cemetery and Old City Cemetery in the evening. Kevin and Paul Baumann, brothers, are very knowledgeable about local cemeteries and have visited cemeteries in their travels internationally. They will start the day with a PowerPoint presentation on Tombstone Art. In the afternoon, Roselawn-Mound Cemetery and Old City Cemetery will be toured, with Paul and Kevin as guides. One just might hear bagpipes in the background and see re-enactments of moments in the life of pioneers who lived long ago. In case of rain, we will meet back in the library (after lunch on your own) for afternoon stories of art in the lives of those who lived here in Coles County long ago. Fee:  $10. Register by 9/23/19. Call 581-5114.

The Road That Built the Nation       

October 2nd from Noon-1:30pm at the Charleston Public Library. Molly Bellamey, formerly on the National Road Association of Illinois Board of Directors, will educate on the purpose and funding of the road that began in 1811 in Cumberland, MD and ended in Vandalia, IL in 1837.   She will describe pioneers who moved west, and how they managed the work and hardships of travel in the early 1800s.  The National Scenic Byways Program will be examined along with things to see and do today along the Road in Illinois.  Not to be missed, Molly’s delightful children’s book, Patch on the National Road, will be shared.  Lucky attendees will go home with a copy! Free and open to the public.  Registration requested at 581-5114. 


October 5th from Noon–4p.m. at the Douglas-Hart Nature Center. Free for the whole family. It’s our annual Fall Fest and give back to the community. This traditional fall event is FREE for the whole community and includes kettle corn, caramel apples, apple cider, carnival games, face painting, costume contest, haystack hustle and more! For more information, call 235-4644 or visit

Lincoln Log Cabin – Saturday Story Series             

October 5th at 10:30 AM at the Lincoln Log Cabin Visitor Center. Saturday Stories feature the reading of a historically-themed children’s book, followed by activities and crafts which help to engage youngsters in our American history and bring the stories to life. The programs, geared towards ages 3-10, are free and open to the public. All youth must be accompanied by an adult. For more information, visit

5 Mile House- Living History -Fall Festival

October 6th from 1:00 PM-4:00 PM at the 5 Mile House in Charleston.

Living History Open Houses – 1-4 pm

Demonstrations run 1-4 pm; Music from 1:00-2:30 pm; Programs are at 2:30 pm:

Open Hearth & Stove Cooking

White Coopering

Black Smithing

Spinning & Weaving

Cider Pressing

Farm Animal Petting


Corn Husk Doll Making

Candle dipping

Music by Motherload

Also featuring Professor Phineas Fairhead, Phrenologist; Andy Anderson, Magician; Gary & Deb Longcor’s Kettle Korn.

For more information, visit and click “Charleston Calendar of Events”.

Homeschool Game Club       

October 10th from 2:00 PM – 4:00 PM at the Mattoon Public Library 2nd Floor. For more information, call 234-2621 or visit

Paint the Town, 5K Color Run          

October 12th at 9:00 am behind KC Summers. Run or walk in honor or in memory of family and friends who have faced cancer. Fee- $25; $30 day of race. Register at

Make and Take           

October 12th from 10:30am – 4:00pm, or while supplies last, at the Charleston Library. Kids under eight, please bring a grown-up to help. Drop in to make one, some, or all of our crafts, then take them home! For more information, call 345-1514 or visit