Friday, October 18th

Take a curator-led tour of the new "Hot Spots" exhibit, Krannert Art Museum, 2 to 3 p.m., free

This thought-provoking exhibition just opened at KAM this week and I can't think of a better way to experience it than with a curator-led tour. I've been anxious to see it since I listed it as one of my must-see arts picks for October. "Hot Spots" promises to be an deep exploration of the nuclear industry and the long-term impact of radioactive waste. (DD) Photo of Will Wilson, AIR: Confluence of 3 Generations, 2015, from the KAM Facebook page

Decorate a pumpkin and drink beer, Pour Bros. Craft Taproom, 4 to 8 p.m., free (except for the beer part)

Win some prizes from Schlafly Brewing and Koerner Distributing while showing off your pumpkin carving (or marker art) skills. You can compete as an individual or team of up to four, then customers will vote between 8 and 9 p.m. You can bring your own pumpkin, or procure one at the bar. Carving utensils will be provided. (JM)

Enjoy a creepy art crawl at Haunted's opening reception, 518 Lincoln Building, Champaign, 5 to 7 p.m. 

Tour the ACME Elfworks ArtSpace and enjoy the deliciously dark sides of some of your favorite local artists. Check out my recent SPlog to learn more about the artists, or check out the Facebook event page for additional days and times to view the show. (DD) Photo from Facebook event page

Do some U of I Homecoming stuff, locations vary, all weekend, prices vary

This weekend the main homecoming events are happening, as in the parade and football game, but there are also a lot of other cool things going on; Alma's Art Walk for one. So if you are a school spirit-y sort then make sure to check out the event line-up. The parade route will be a bit different this year because of all the construction on campus, so make sure to plan accordingly. Hopefully this year will be devoid of any Chief nonsense. (JM)

Saturday, October 19th

Have brunch, Baxter’s, 9 to 11 a.m., $10 and under

Baxter’s is hosting a tailgate lunch Saturday morning, before the University of Illinois football game. The options for $10 include egg casserole, biscuits and gravy, baked pasta, bacon, sausage, and fresh fruit. There will also be $5 burgers and $3 brats, $2 mimosas, $3 bloody Marys, and $3 draft beers. Additional information is available on the Facebook event page. (JH)

Shop the Red Dot Fall Jewelry Sale, Link Gallery, 408 E Peabody Drive, Champaign, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Treat yourself to some handmade bling created by the talented students of the University of Illinois metalwork and jewelry department. I've been hearing great things about this sale and the caliber of the work coming out of this program. Stop by and bring home something shiny, unique and locally made. The sale is happening Friday as well. (DD) 

Warm up with some seafood bisque, your kitchen or select restaurants, all day, prices vary

Saturday is national seafood bisque day and I can think of no better remedy for mid-October chills than some warm, creamy soup. One of my favorite seafood bisques is Hamilton Walker's Lobster & Crab Bisque, full of flavor and more filling than you’d think. Remember, you can also do homemade! (SP) Photo from Hamilton Walker's website

Fall Open House, Japan House, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., free (tea ceremony ticket is $12)

Enjoy a crisp fall afternoon strolling the Japan House grounds, touring the house itself, and taking in the displays of international tea ceremony objects and Ikebana arrangements. There will be a talk at 1 p.m. given by the owners of Tangerine Mountain Imports & Designs, and you can also check out their pop up shop while you're there. Be sure to sign up for a tea ceremony! There are several happening throughout the day. (JM)

Try some of these treats, Campustown, all weekend, prices vary

I can’t stop thinking about these treats that Mayank suggested in his article this week. Visiting the U of I campus during Homecoming does sound a little crazy, but if you go during the game, you’ll avoid some of that traffic and congestion. (JH) Photo by Mayank Boob

Celebrate the harvest season at the Hogchute Opry Harvest, Kalyx Center for Sustainability, 3 p.m. onward, $10

The 2019 Hogchute Opry Harvest is being held this Saturday at the Kalyx Center for Sustainability, located just outside Allerton Park near Monticello. For just $10 you can hear a ton of local bands including the Black Eyed Lillies, Emily Anne, The Merry Travelers, and more. You are also encouraged to camp out at no additional cost so you can hear all the bands and avoid driving the country roads at night. (BH) Photo from the Facebook event

Have some early Halloween fun, Gibson City, 3 to 11 p.m., free

Celebrate everything you love about the season at the Gibson City Haunted Forest this weekend. The event will take place in the Salt Creek Area 21 Campsite this weekend and donations are encouraged. There will be hayrack rides through the haunted woods, kids activities, food trucks, and a costume contest. The event will return with the same hours again next weekend. (SP) Top photo from Facebook event page

Do the Time Warp at Rocky Horror, 9:30 p.m., The Art Theater, $10

Illini Student Musicals is back again this year to help facilitate your annual Rock Horror Picture Show live experience. If you've never had the opportunity to dress up and experience a screening of this cult classic with audience participation, there's no better time than this weekend. For those who may have gone to similar screenings, a friendly reminder that no outside food or liquids may be brought into the theater, and there will be bag checks. (BH)

Sunday, October 20th

Eat at Golden Harbor, all weekend, about $22/person

I have been seriously craving Golden Harbor for a couple weeks now, but haven’t had the space to actually go and enjoy a meal. Round up some friends, or people you can at least tolerate for a few hours, and go. Order all the things you love, and some new ones to try. Feast. (JH) Photo by Jessica Hammie

Commune with nature on a Sunday morning bird walk, Anita Purves Nature Center, 7:30 a.m., free

The Champaign County Audubon Society is celebrating 75 years of bird watching. Join them at the Anita Purves Nature Center. The walks last about 1.5 hours, during which time you'll get a chance to hear some of the many species which are native to C-U. Don't worry if you don't have binoculars or don't know what to look or listen for, there will be pairs for loan and people to help you out. Stick around afterward for free beverages and a light snack. (BH) 

Go to Kam's?, 11 a.m. to 12 a.m., whatever you want to spend on beer and Blue Guys

Well, here we are. Kam's as we know it will no longer exist after this weekend. They are kind of brilliantly hosting their "Last Call on Daniel Street" during Homecoming Weekend, to bring in all of us alums to relive our foggy, smelly, sticky memories. Yes, Kam's will be resurrected on the corner of First and Green, but we know it will never be the same. So, if you dare battle the crowds that will surely be there this weekend, go give the Daniel Street institution one last toast. (JM) Photo by Steven Pratten


All event information is accurate to the best of our abilities, but sometimes we make mistakes and sometimes event information, times, prices, etc., change after we look them up. Whenever possible, we've provided a link to the original event page; you should always double-check the source before you make any firm plans. Thanks for your understanding.