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Craft fair, flea market, and coffee and cars event set for Oct. 14 in Gillespie

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A huge craft fair, flea market and coffee and cars will be held on Saturday, October 14 at Gillespie United Methodist Church starting at 9 a.m. and ending at 3 p.m.

It’s not too early to think Christmas. Don’t miss the opportunity to buy those unique gifts and decorations to make your holidays special. The event will be held in the Fellowship Hall at 900 West Broadway, Gillespie, IL, rain or shine.

One-of-a-kind purses by local artist, beautiful woodwork, Primitive decor, fresh Georgia pecans for baking and gifting, local honey, Tastefully Simple, Norwex, and more will be available.

Sandwiches and desserts will also be for sale inside while cool rides will be on display at “Coffee and Cars!” in the parking lot of the church. Owners of the cars will receive a coupon for free coffee and donut upon arrival.

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Americana festival set for July 4 at Benld Park

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Jess Barker, The Lodge Brothers, and The New Prairie Drifters are set to take the stage at Benld City Park on Thursday, July 4 as part of the Americana Festival.

The music festival intends to celebrate the birthday and spirit of America with thriving local culture of music, food, and art. It is scheduled to begin at 12 noon and end at 6 pm.

Food will be available for purchase from The Barracks American Table, a new Gillespie restaurant, and skincare products will be available from Nature’s Bliss, a Benld gift shop.

The park is located at 305 North Main Street in Benld. Admission is free.

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Italian-American Days celebrates 70 years Memorial Day weekend

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In a vibrant blend of tradition, culture, and community spirit, the Benld Italian-American Days proudly marks its 70th anniversary this year. Established in 1949, this beloved festival has become an iconic event, not only within the Italian-American community but also for all those
who appreciate the richness of Italian culture, cuisine, and heritage.

For seven decades, the Italian Club of Benld, a non-profit organization, has hosted this festival that serves as a hub for celebrating and preserving cherished traditions while embracing the fusion of Italian and American cultures. This year’s event will take place May 24, 25 and
26 at the Benld City Park in Benld, Illinois.

The festival begins on Friday, May 24 at 4:00 pm with food stands opening for service. Connor Family Amusements will provide carnival arm bands from 6:00-10:00 pm allowing unlimited carnival rides for $30.00. Klose Kuarters will provide music for your listening and dancing
pleasure from 6:30-10:30 pm.

On Saturday, May 25, the Italian Club of Benld will host its 3rd Annual Car Show. Car registrations will occur between 8:00 am-12:00 pm with judging taking place at noon. The Italian Club of Benld Car Show is held in the Benld City Park (rain or shine). Registration fee is $20.00. Cars will be judged professionally and trophies will be awarded. The first 70 entries will receive a commemorative tee sponsored by Kravanya Funeral Homes along with a dash plaque.

Festival food stands will open at 11:00 am. Carnival armbands will be offered from 12:00-4:00 pm and 6:00 pm-10:00 pm for $30.00 each armband session. Musical entertainment will be provided by the Jorrells from 6:30-10:30 pm.

The last day of the festival, Sunday, May 26, has always been the highlight of the weekend. One ton of homemade FREE SPAGHETTI will be served from the Lunch Stand from 11:00 am-1:30 pm. The musical line-up for the day includes: Fat Chance from 11:00 am-2:00 pm, Syner-
Gee from 2:30 pm-6:30 pm, and Big Shake Daddies from 6:30 pm-10:30 pm.

Our most favorite tradition of the festival is our Bocce Ball Tournament which begins play at noon. Team registrations begin at 11:00 am in the Beer Stand. The Bocce Ball Tournament consists of both a men and women’s bracket. Carnival armbands will be offered from 12:00-4:00 pm and again from 6:00-10:00 pm for $30.00 each armband session.

One cannot speak of the Benld Italian-American Days without mentioning its sumptuous array of culinary delights. Visitors can indulge in homemade cannoli, homemade Italian salami, tortellini soup, homemade meatball sandwiches, bagna cauda – all available in the Specialty
Stand. Our Lunch Stand will provide American favorites of cheeseburgers, hot dogs, Italian beef. The Fish Stand will offer cod, Alaskan whitefish and fries.

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BINGO will be played every night beginning at 7:00 pm.

Whether you’re of Italian descent or simply appreciate the beauty of Italian culture, the Italian Club of Benld welcomes you to join in the celebration of its 70th anniversary. Come experience the sights, sounds, and flavors of Italy and be part of a tradition that has stood the test of
time. Buon divertimento! (Enjoy the fun!)

Questions about the 70th Benld Italian-American Days can be made by calling (217) 825-7052, or you may follow us on Facebook at Benld Italian-American Days.

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Progressive Club to celebrate 90th anniversary

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Benld Entreprise

The Wilsonville Progressive Club will celebrate and host a 90 year Anniversary Party on Saturday, May 11. The party will include a catered dinner, a live band, and fireworks.

Doors will open at 2 pm with a catered dinner being served at 4 pm.  The Shane Kessinger Experience (live band) will play at 5 pm, and a grand fireworks display will be held at dusk.

The Progressive Club was originally established in 1934 by the Progressive Miners and was located on the northwest side of Wilsonville’s main street. The Club moved to their new building in January of 1949 and today this is still the current location at 212 Wilson Street in Wilsonville.

Wilsonville was founded in 1917 when Superior Coal Co. Mine No. 4 was sunk and this was the most modern mine in the Superior field. At that time, the little settlement which grew up around the mine was called Wilson. One day a worker paused and asked, “What are we going to name this town?” President Wilson was in office, thus the town was then and there named Wilson until 1919 when it was incorporated and the name expanded to Wilsonville.

The Wilsonville Progressive Club is operated and maintained by an elected panel of trustees and loyal members.  The Club is open to the public and membership is always welcome.  The large outdoor covered pavilion and manicured grassy side lot offer an attractive and convenient venue for any event along with inside facilities. 

If you are interested in renting for any kind of event, call 217-835-3122 during open hours which are Thursday, Friday and Saturday, 4 pm to close, and Sunday doors open at 2 pm.  Every Sunday afternoon at 4 pm is the Queen of Hearts drawing and the Club is on Facebook as well.

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