Some of the things to do in Rockford this week include (clockwise from top left) Somnium, Shelter Care comedy night with James Fisher Jr. and others, Fall Art Scene and the Midtown Dog Walk. (Staff and provided photos)
Rock River Current
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ROCKFORD — This week is packed with things to do around the city.

There are performances from nationally touring comedians Jo Koy and Jeff Dunham and the band Three Dog Night. But local artists and performers shine this weekend too, with Fall ArtScene, Stand & Deliver and Somnium: The Book of Water Myths and Legends.

There are also events that let you take in the fall season, including Autumn at the Arboretum and Cider ‘n Cinnamon.

More news: A look inside 2 historic buildings that Rockford plans to sell to a local developer

Here’s a list of things you can do this week, or you can check out more on our events page.

Snuggle up and watch Super Mario

About: The Cherry Valley Library will host family movie night. You’re invited to come in your pajamas and watch “The Super Mario Bros. Movie.” Popcorn will be provided.

Where: Cherry Valley Public Library, 755 E. State St., Cherry Valley

When: 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 4

Info: Go HERE


Walk your pup through Midtown

Dave Weegar tosses a treat to Lady as he and Jessica Weegar have a bite to eat Thursday, May 4, 2023, during the Midtown Dog Walk outside Ernie’s Midtown Pub. (Photo by Kevin Haas/Rock River Current)

About: The final Midtown Dog Walk of the season is this week. Bring your furry friend for a gathering outside of Ernie’s Midtown Pub with vendors Bad Humor Ice Cream Truck, The Canine Crunchery and Inzombia Coffee. The event doubles as a fundraiser for Noah’s Ark Animal Sanctuary.

Where: Ernie’s Midtown Pub, 1025 Fifth Ave., Rockford

When: 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 5

Info: Go HERE

Comedy for a cause

Comedian Adam Burke headlines on Thursday, Oct. 5, 2023, at Veterans Memorial Hall in Rockford to raise money for Shelter Care Ministries. (Photo provided by Adam Burke)

About: The Chicago Bears play Thursday night, but you can go watch something that is intentionally laughable instead. The second annual Shelter Care comedy night brings in four comedian for an evening of laughs that raises money for Shelter Care Ministries outreach programs for the homeless and adults with mental illness.

Adam Burke, a comedian and frequent guest on NPR’s “Wait, Wait … Don’t Tell Me,” is the headliner. It also features James Fisher Jr., KB Marion and Kevin Haas.

Where: Veterans Memorial Hall, 211 N. Main St., Rockford

When: 6 p.m. doors open, 7 p.m. program begins on Thursday, Oct. 5, 2023

Tickets: Go HERE

Get into mischief

About: Kith and Kin Art Collective will host the opening reception for Mischief, an art show featuring Pablo Korona, Brett Whitacre, Drew Eurek, Carrie Johnson, Drew Helge, Jessica Quam and Val Olafson.

Where: Kith and Kin, 510 E. State St., Rockford

When: 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 5

Info: Go HERE 

See art around the city

About: The annual Fall ArtScene turns businesses and organizations around Rockford into galleries filled with art. A wide array of art is available for purchase from new and established artists.

Where: There are more than 30 locations. You can see them HERE.

When: 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. Friday, Oct. 6 and 4 p.m. to 9 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 7

Info: Go HERE.

See Jeff Dunham and his dummies

About: Comedian and ventriloquist Jeff Dunham, who has been selling out theaters during global tours for years and has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, brings his suitcase full of characters to Rockford during his Still Not Canceled Tour.

Where: BMO Center, 300 Elm St., Rockford

When: 7 p.m. Friday, Oct. 6

How much: Tickets start at $55

Tickets: Go HERE

See a blend of impromptu poetry and performance

About: Cafe RPL presents Stand & Deliver, featuring monologues performed by players from Moon Dog Theatre responded to by impromptu poetry that’s written on-the-spot and delivered by some of our region’s most talented poets and writers. Poets include Rockford’s Poet Laureate Jenna Goldsmith, Heath Alberts, Goddess the Warrior Poet and Kevin Haas.

Where: Nordlof Center Black Box Theatre, 118 N. Main St., Rockford

When: 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. Friday, Oct. 5

Info: Go HERE

Shop for books and more

About: Shop for gently used books, audiobooks, DVDs, CDs, video games, puzzles, games, art and craft supplies, and more — for all ages — all under the outdoor pavilion at Womanspace.

Where: Womanspace Labyrinth and Gardens, 3333 Marie Linden Drive, Rockford

When: 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 5; 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. Friday, Oct. 6; 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 7

Comedy at the cantina

About: Marz Timms headlines comedy night at Lucha Cantina with featured comedians Michelle Krajecki, Ashley Lusk and Tim Brennan.

Where: Lucha Cantina, 1641 N. Alpine Road, Rockford

When: 7:30 p.m. Friday, Oct. 6

Admission: $10

Info: Go HERE

Experience autumn at the arboretum

About: Klehm Arboretum & Botanic Garden’s signature fall community event, Autumn at the Arboretum, is a three-day celebration filled with family activities, live music, a scavenger hunt through the grounds, a cake walk and dog costume contest.

Where: Klehm Arboretum & Botanic Garden, 2715 S. Main St., Rockford

When: 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Friday, Oct. 6; 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 7 and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday


Jo Koy’s world tour stops here

About: Comedian Jo Koy, fresh off his Netflix special and the Universal Films picture “Easter Sunday,” brings his world tour to Rockford.

Where: BMO Center, 300 Elm St., Rockford

When: 8 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 8

Admission: Tickets start at $40

Tickets: Go HERE

Three Dog Night live in concert

About: Three Dog Night, which has performed in thousands of shows including two Super Bowls over five decades on the road, comes to Rockford this weekend.

Where: Coronado Performing Arts Center, 314 N. Main St., Rockford

When: 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 7, 2023

Admission: Tickets start at $46

Tickets: Go HERE

Sip cider at an arts and crafts fair

About: Cider ‘n Cinnamon is an arts and crafts fair now running for five decades. It brings makers together to sell art, jewelry, crafts, clothing, home decor, vintage goods and other merchandise.

Where: Edgebrook shopping center, 1605 N. Alpine Road, Rockford

When: 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 7; 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 8

Info:  Go HERE

Guitar virtuoso in concert

About: Claude Bourbon, a world-travelling guitar virtuoso, is coming to Concerts on The Creek in Rockford as part of his world tour.

Where: Spring Creek Church, 4500 Spring Creek Road, Rockford

When: 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 7

Info: Go HERE

Shop for vintage goods

About: Frosted Farmhouse, Jill Rae Finally Art and Truly Treasured Gift n Thrift in downtown Rockton will participate in a vintage shop hop happening this weekend at hundreds of stores in Illinois and southern Wisconsin.

When: Friday, Oct. 6 and Saturday, Oct. 7

Info: Go HERE

Experience Somnium

“Somnium: The Book of Water Myths and Legends” goes through rehearsal on Thursday, Sept. 30, 2023, in downtown Rockford. (Photo by Kevin Haas/Rock River Current)

About: Somnium is a multimedia public art show created and directed by Eddaviel and Emily Klonicki that combines the original music, storytelling, new media, light projection and modern dance for an immersive, reality-bending, multi-sensory experience. This year’s chapter is called “The Book of Water Myths and Legends.”

Where: 702 N. Madison St., Rockford

When: 8 p.m. and 9:30 p.m. Friday, Oct. 6 and 8 p.m. and 9:30 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 7

Admission: $22

Info/tickets: Go HERE

Prepare for scares at Twisted Crypt

About: Twisted Crypt Haunted House is 10,000 square feet of chaos, gore, jump scares and creepy characters. The seasonal scare site is open again this weekend.

Where: 5420 E. State St., Rockford

This week’s hours: 7-11 p.m. Friday and Saturday; 7-10 p.m. Sunday

Admission: $15


Rowers on the Rock

About: The Head of the Rock Regatta draws thousands of rowers and spectators to the banks of the Rock River for the annual competition.

When: 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 8

Where: Rock River between Auburn Street Bridge and SwedishAmerican Riverfront YMCA

Info: Go HERE

Trunk or treat at Tinker

About: In addition to the traditional trunk-or-treating, visitors can see the main floor of the historic cottage, which is staged for a Victorian funeral. There is also live music from the JB Project and multiple food trucks, vendors and a mini-farmers market.

Where: Tinker Swiss Cottage Museum, 411 Kent St., Rockford

When: 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 8

Info: Go HERE

Compiled by Kevin Haas. Email him at or follow him on X at @KevinMHaas or Instagram @thekevinhaas and Threads @thekevinhaas

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