Some dads fish. Some dads play golf. Some dads like to light up the BBQ – and some just want to take a nap.
We have cultivated a great list of fun things to do on Father’s Day in and around Champaign-Urbana that can match any dad’s personality. The options seem limitless, especially if the weather is nice on June 16. We’ve put together some of our favorite events all in one spot to help dad relax and feel appreciated, as well as providing fun for other members of the family.
Thanks to Parkland College for sponsoring this guide. Parkland College is now hiring a Director of the Child Development Center, seeking a high energy individual passionate about child education and helping families succeed. Parkland’s Child Development Center offers quality childcare that engages and grows children ages 2-5 with activities, facilities, and services. The ideal candidate for this role is a relational and innovative leader with a creative/marketing background. If you are looking for a leadership role where you can make a difference for children and their families, apply now here. Applications must be submitted by June 10 at 5 p.m. Parkland is an equal opportunity employer.
Father’s Day Celebration at Sholem Aquatic Center: Sunday, June 16, 11 a.m.-7 p.m. It’s free admission for all dads (with a paying child), and he gets to relax in whatever way he chooses. The day includes a dads-only cannonball contest with prizes; a trivia bowl; a “draw your dad” contest for ages 3-12; and half-priced root beer floats for all dads.
Father’s Day at Crystal Lake Family Aquatic Center: It’s free admission for all dads (with a paying child).
Check out a new-to-you swimming pool: No better way to cool off than swimming in one of our awesome public aquatic centers.
Take your Dad Fishing. Maybe dad doesn’t want to swim – but he likes to get near the water. Fishing is a lot of fun and great for parents and kids alike. Our guide on where to go, and what you will need, to fish in and around Champaign-Urbana.
Father’s Day Weekend at Monticello Railway: Saturday, June 15, and Sunday, June 16, at the Monticello Railway Museum. Dads ride free; tickets for kids and grown-ups range from $6-10 (kids under 2 are free). What little boys don’t love trains (and daddies are just overgrown little boys)? Dads ride FREE when accompanied by their children!
Sounds at Sunset: Sunday, June 16, 6-8 p.m. One of our favorite local bands will be on the Sounds of Sunset stage this Father’s Day – Bones N Jugs. This event will take place at the NEW Commissioner’s Park, which if you haven’t checked it out yet – read our review. Each Sounds of Sunset concert includes an array of activities such as live music, inflatables and more. Bring your own lawn chairs and refreshments.
Take Dad to play foot golf: It might not be as relaxing as a round of golf without the kiddos, but if you want to do something together – head out to Lake of the Woods in Mahomet for nine or 18 holes of foot golf. Foot Golf can be played by children and adults. If you can kick a soccer ball, you can play Foot Golf! Tip: bring your own soccer ball and save a $1.
Take Dad out to the Drive-In. Harvest Moon Drive-In will celebrate its 30th anniversary with its fifth annual Kids Carnival benefiting St. Jude Children’s Hospital. Starts way before showtime, so even if you don’t stay for the movies – play games and more. WOODY & BUZZ from Toy Story 4 will even be there for pictures with the kids (or dads) at dusk.
Attention Foodie Dads: If the dad in your life loves food – especially wine, cheese, and other such yumminess – then register the family to take a behind-the-scenes tour at Prairie Fruit Farms. And hey, who doesn’t love goats? Tickets $6-10.
Other events over Father’s Day Weekend, June 14-16:
Strawberry Jam: Saturday, June 16, 4-8 p.m. Bring a picnic dinner and a blanket or lawn chair for a good old-fashioned fun time at this free family event. This year is the district’s 30th Strawberry Jam event and the Anita Purves Nature Center’s 40th anniversary. Blast-from-the-past planned event activities include: hayrack rides around Meadowbrook Park; Tours of Spomer Prairie; face painting; kite flying, rocket demonstrations, star gazing with the CU Astronomy Club; Dancing with the Urbana Country Dancers. Of course, enjoy musical performances and taste fresh strawberries over ice cream (while supplies last).
Piatt County Fair: Tractor pulls, bands, inflatables, fair pageant, and much more! The fair runs June 13-16. Admission to the fair is FREE.
Juneteenth: Juneteenth, the oldest known celebration commemorating the abolition of slavery in the United States, is one event you don’t want to miss. Presented by the Champaign Public Library at Douglass Park. Enjoy music and visit different vendors while learning about this important holiday. Children can make arts and crafts, play on the bounce house and obstacle course, or get soaked in the Douglass Park Splash Pad.
Check out our list of Father’s Day Freebies
Want more ideas? Check out our Calendar of Events.