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Local Halloween hauntings & happenings

Halloween is just around the corner and local events to celebrate the holiday are packing the calendar. From spooky to all-out scary, there is something for everyone in and around Kankakee County now through Oct. 31.

Bradley decorating contest

Village of Bradley residents are invited to decorate their houses for Halloween and enter to win the village-hosted contest. The deadline to enter is 4:30 p.m. Oct. 22. For an entry form and more information, visit the village’s website at bradleyil.org.

Wicked Night Out

At 5:30 p.m. Thursday at the Manteno Golf Club — 7202 N. 4000East Road — join Zonta Club in Kankakee for a Halloween-themed fundraiser to benefit Harbor House, Clove Alliance, Fortitude Community Outreach and Zonta International. There will be shopping, dancing, food and cocktails. Tickets are $25 each and are available at @zontakankakee on Facebook. For more information, email zontakankakee@gmail.com.

Chebanse Haunted House

From 7 to 10 p.m. every Friday and Saturday this month, visit the Chebanse Civic Center at 180 W. First South St., Chebanse, for a haunted house sponsored by the Village of Chebanse. It is $10 per person and there are concessions. Attendees 13 and under must be accompanied by an adult. For more information, go to facebook.com/chebansehauntedhouse.

Halloween Downtown

From 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Oct. 17, this annual festival brings different aspects of the community together for a day of family fun and features local businesses and nonprofits running free-to-play games and activities, each with a Halloween theme. Held in downtown Kankakee in the 200 block of South Schuyler Avenue, which is the farmer’s market parking lot, and festival square around the train depot fountain. For more information, go to K3Halloween.com.

Harvest in the Hollow

Happening from 6 to 10 p.m. Oct. 22 and 4 to 10 p.m. Oct. 23, this fall event at Perry Farm in Bourbonnais features hayrides, a haunted harvest maze, games, laser tag and other “spooktacular” activities — all to raise money for the Exploration Station. Email KourtneeT@btpd.org for more information.

Limestone Library Fall Festival

At 11 a.m. on Oct. 23, the library is hosting a fall festival outside of the library — located at 2701 W. Tower Road, Kankakee — which will include a trunk-or-treat, roving magician, costume contest, seasonal games and The Bennett-Curtis House food truck. For more information, call 815-939-1696.

Boo at the Barn

From noon to 4 p.m. Oct. 23, there will be a Halloween event at Griffin Gate Farm — 6735 E. 7000 North Road, . General admission is $5 per person or $30 for family of four (includes pony rides, hay rides and mummy mix). There will be a petting zoo, parade, maze, food and more. For more information, email griffingatefarm@gmail.com.

Fall Fair on the Square

Starting at 1 p.m. on Oct. 23 at The Square on Second in downtown, this fall festival is open to all ages. Whitmore Ace Hardware will again offer its “Great Pumpkin” display, and there will be many local vendors on-site. For updates and more information, go to fb.me/e/13HZj4II3.

9th Annual Wine & Witches

At 5 p.m. on Oct. 26, Flight 102 — 565 Main Street NW, Bourbonnais — will host the annual Wine & Witches event. Come dressed as a witch or warlock and receive half-off glasses of house wine. There will be a raffle for a chance to win a spooky wine basket, and best-dressed witch wins a prize.


At 5 p.m. on Oct. 29, there will be a trick-or-treat event at Northfield Square Mall, located at 1600 N State Route 50, Bourbonnais. The event is sponsored by mall tenants and will end when candy runs out. No costume contest this year. For more information, call 815-937-4241.

Boo Bash

From 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. on Oct. 29 at the Kankakee Valley Park District Rec Center — 150 N. Indiana Ave., Kankakee — the KVPD is hosting a kids Halloween extravaganza. There will be food, drink, a costume contest, trick-or-treating and an appearance by magician Mr. Magic. Pre-order tickets at kvpd.com.

Game On Halloween Party

At 8 p.m. on Oct. 29, Game On Bar & Grill at 115-117 Second St. in Peotone will host their annual Halloween party. At 9 p.m., Matt Yeager and the South Side Social Club will perform. Masks and costumes are encouraged.

Bordertown Hauntings

From noon to 4 p.m. on Oct. 30 in Historic Downtown Momence, visit Main Street for trick-or-treating downtown, costume contests for kids, families and pets, cookie and pumpkin decorating, hayrides, spooky storytelling, reptile show, petting zoo and much more. For more information, call 815-472-3861 or go to mainstreetmomence.com.

Spooky Skate

Starting at 1 p.m. on Oct. 30 at the Ice Valley Centre Ice Arena, skate the day away (if you dare) and dress to impress in a Halloween costume to enter the costume contest. For more information, call 815-939-1946.

Monster Mash & Costume Party

From 6 to 7:30 p.m. on Oct. 30, Exploration Station, located at 1095 W. Perry St, Bourbonnais, is hosting a party for ages 2 to 8. Make a trick-or-treat bag, decorate a fake pumpkin, play games and trick-or-treat through the museum. Registration required 24 hours before the program and is $14; call 815-933-9905 or go to btpd.org.

Steam Hollow Halloween Bash

At 6 p.m. Oct. 30, Steam Hollow Brewing Co. at 450 S. Spruce St., Unit C, in is hosting a Halloween bash. Food will be available from Mia Bellas Wood Fired Pizza. At 8 p.m., there will be a live performance by the band Anthem, and then a costume contest will be judged.

Murder in the BC Mansion — Mystery Dinner

At 7 p.m. Oct. 30, The Bennett-Curtis House — 302 W Taylor St, Grant Park — invites you to take part in a 20s Speakeasy WhoDunit. The evening begins with appetizers and mingling with guests and cast. The cast are seated amongst attendees and dinner is served throughout the play. During the meal a murder is committed. It’s up to diners to figure out WhoDunit!

Braidwood Lions’ Annual Halloween Hot Dog giveaway

Between 3 and 7 p.m. Oct. 31, the Braidwood Lions Club will be under the Lions Pavilion in Braidwood City Park serving up free hot dogs, chips, popcorn, hot chocolate and lemonade will be provided. The Braidwood Knights of Columbus Council 1574 will also be joining us to pass out free Halloween treats for the kids. All while supplies last. Costumes are encouraged but not required. For more information, call 815-791-8093 or go to braidwoodlionsclub.org.

Bradley to begin fire station construction

BRADLEY — Bradley is set to begin construction for what will become the village’s second fire station.

The first steps are expected to begin in the coming weeks as the village board awarded a pair of contracts — totaling $247,865 — for excavating and foundation work which is expected to be completed before year’s end.

The village board approved a resolution awarding a $195,651 contract to Hamann Wagner Excavating of Chebanse and $52,214 to Kevin Nugent Construction, Inc., of Bourbonnais, for the foundation.

The board had been expected to award the sheet metal contract for the project’s heating, ventilation and air-conditioning system in the amount of $177,500 to Jameson Sheet Metal, Inc., of Plainfield, but that was pulled out of the resolution as Mayor Mike Watson said some additional details needed to be finalized.

The project includes a 3,500-square-foot addition to the property at 1690 Newtowne Road, the site of the former Bradley-Bourbonnais Chamber of Commerce office. In addition, the existing 4,200-square-foot former chamber building will be undergoing extensive renovations.

Major portions of the project will go out for bid in the coming months.

The project was to begin this summer, but the village board opted to rebid the project as construction costs — projected to be in the $1.7 million range — came in at just under $3.5 million largely due to skyrocketing construction material costs.

Watson said he doesn’t believe costs will be decreased significantly on the second bids, but the time has come to begin this project so it will be completed by late 2022.

The village has been seeking to add a second fire station in its northeast portion for several years as a significant amount of residential and retail development has grown there.

The department’s response time are lengthy to get there, so the second station will bring those response times to within emergency standards, village officials say.

Claims adjuster ready to look at Beckman Harbor

The Kankakee Valley Park District should know soon how extensive the damages are to Beckman Harbor and how soon it can be rectified.

Dayna Heitz, KVPD executive director, said an insurance claims adjuster and a marine engineer are expected Wednesday to assess the damage. The dock on the north wall of Beckman Harbor collapsed into the water after heavy rains on Oct. 2 inundated Kankakee.

The park district property is insured through Park District Risk Management Agency, and there’s a $1,000 deductible. Heitz said at Tuesday’s board of commissioners meeting that she’s not sure what PDRMA will cover and what it won’t.

“I don’t have a time frame yet,” she said. “We’re supposed to be starting to take those docks out. The docks will be totally removed from the harbor and put into the parking lot. And they will do their assessment.”

PDRMA’s adjuster will also look at the park district’s cameras to see if any footage of the collapse is available to determine what happened.

All of the boats were supposed to be removed from the harbor by this past Sunday, but there are still five boats remaining. It’s hopeful the remaining boats will be removed this week.

“Of those five, only two were from the north wall, so the other three were from other spots [in the harbor],” Heitz said.

The park district will also salvage as many of the remaining docks as it can. Some of those that collapsed into the harbor won’t be able to be retrieved.

KVPD pays an annual premium of just more than $38,000 per year to PDRMA to insure all of its properties, vehicles, workers compensation and general liability. The district hasn’t made any damage claims this year.

The actual age of Beckman Harbor is unknown, although Heitz was told by a KVPD staff member it was possibly constructed in the late 1950s or early ‘60s. Former City of Kankakee mayor Russell Johnson contacted the Daily Journal and said the harbor was there in 1950 when his family moved to Kankakee from Chicago when he was 6 years old.

Russell also said the north wall of the harbor was repaired in 1982 or 1983. He said the top of the dock was removed, and there was mostly sand underneath. Russell said that said was removed and replaced with stones, and the concrete slabs were put back on the top of the dock.

“That’s how we made it to last another 35 years,” he said. “It just needs to be redone.”