80 degree's, Jazz in the streets, and Burgoo Too!

This has easily become one of my favorite weekends of the year. On Saturday night, LaSalle closes the downtown streets for the Jazz and Wine Festival. For the past two years, we have had some to the best weather for this event. Nothing beats listing to some fine jazz while sipping locally made wine and micro brews with the family. There are local restaurants showcasing their trade as well.
This year I went with an Oktoberfest Ale by the name of Bob's 42. It had a nice amber color and was full of flavor. The night capped off with a nice little firework show.

But the main event comes on Sunday with the 42nd Annual Burgoo Festival. The event is  held in the little town of Utica,IL Population 977. This is the biggest event in this area and organized by LaSalle County Historical Society. More than 1,000 people will travel in and out of town today. They event will not start until 9am but my wife and I find it best to leave at 8. There is no parking in town its just not big enough and you need to get crafty finding a place to park (AKA inventing your own.).

Cooking the Burg

Many people just come here to walk around and visit the more than two hundred food and vendor stands. All though this year I feel that number was much bigger. Of course, the biggest of all attractions is the Burgoo stew, which is cooked specially for this event. It is cooked slowly over a wood fire. Each batch normally has hundreds of pounds of beef and one froth the amount of pork.

If you want to see just one festival here in Northern Illinois, Burgoo festival is the one. No other festival in the history of Utica is as large or running as long as Burgoo festival.

My Nan had these. My Sister
and I have wanted to buy them
Just not a good price.
Black Smith Shop
My Mom had these I wanted it
but not at $40
Hair Bows everywhere
Homemade Kettle Corn
Only $3
It's Not Burgoo but it is not road kill

I was sick of seeing these.

This was also the first time in a few years we spent
a few dollars. Outside of the hair bows for the kids
, we picked up some Pumpkin Pound Cake, Scents for the fall
and Root Beer Flavored Baked Beans. And a few 
Halloween decorations here and there. This year was a good time a little hot but still allot of fun.

Burgoo is a term used for many types of stew or porridge made from a mixture of ingredients.

FYI I have never had Burgoo and never will. My grandmother
was one of the many people that would help make it. She
always said she would never eat it. There for I will not touch
it. I'm amazed though at how long they cook this. They start on 
Friday and will have it ready for Sunday. They need volunteers
to stir it all day and all night.

Part of the Countdown to Halloween 2011 Day 9.


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