Places to go, things to do as the leaves fall

You’d think it would be the other way around, but it seems there’s always more things to do in and around town in the fall than in summer overall. Charlotte’s Web and other performance organizations reopen their concert season, Halloween brings festivals, parties and haunted houses, and the pre-Thanksgiving months always afford an array of craft shows and outdoors events at apple orchards, pumpkin patches, etc.

Here’s an overview of some of the autumn events coming up. It’s not everything, but we’ll keep you posted for new events and things to do as announcements come our way.

2004 ScreamFest Opening: Sept. 24-25, 8750 N. 2nd St., Machesney Park (mall). Rockford’s largest haunted house, and one of the most surprising, if not (one bit) scary. 6 p.m.-midnight, both nights. Info:

Oktoberfest: Saturday, Sept. 25 at Loves Park City Hall, 100 Heart Blvd. Presented by the German Society of Rockford, supported by Der Rathskeller. Food, music, German and American beers, and chicken dance lessons. 5 p.m.-midnight. $5/$7.

Country Treasure Folk Art & Craft Show: Saturday -Sunday, Sept. 25-26. Forest Hills Lodge, Loves Park. Harvest/holiday craft show, gourmet foods and more. $2. Info: 539-3395.

“Fall Into Books” Sale: Saturday, Sept. 25 through Sunday, Oct. 3 at Cherry Valley Public Library. Semi-annual autumn book sale. Info: 332-5161.

30th Annual Cider & Cinnamon Arts & Crafts Fair: Saturday-Sunday, Oct. 2-3. Edgebrook Center. More than 50 artists and crafters, featuring furniture, jewelry, fine art, and more. Cinnamon donuts, cider, coffee and cinnamon roasted nuts. 10 a.m. both days. Free. Info: 226-0212.

YAA Octoberfest Hops Tasting: Friday, Oct. 8, Rockford Woman’s Club, 323 Park Ave., 6:30-11 p.m. Presented by Young @ Art. Sample dozens of beers and German wines, music by Men of Our Times. To benefit youth scholarships and Rockford Art Museum/School programs. Info:

Rhapsody In Blood: Friday, Oct. 8 at Rockford Marina, 201 Hill St., Rockford. A fund raiser for Rockford Dance Company. A murder mystery ballet set to the music of Gershwin. Performed in segments so attendees can interrogate suspects and help solve the crime. 6:30 p.m. $40. Info: 963-3341.

The Pumpkin Patch: 3178 Illinois Rte. 173, Caledonia. Pumpkins, corn and mums. Open currently. Info: 815/765-2587,

Curran’s Apple Farm: 6385 Kilburn Ave., Rockford. Apple harvesting, gift shop, cider and donuts. Info: 963-7848.

Edwards’ Apple Orchard: 7061 Centerville Rd., Poplar Grove. Monthly apple harvests (see community calendar for apple types and updates), pumpkins (when in harvest) and corn. Truly addictive donuts—Krispy Kremes don’t stand a chance. 765-2234. (Also, second location, Edwards’ Apple Orchard West, 8218 Cemetary Rd., Winnebago.

Valley Orchard: 811 E. State St., Cherry Valley. Apple harvesting in season. Info: 332-9696.

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