July/August Event Preview

Greater Peoria’s nonprofit community is an extraordinary force for advancing the common good and making our region a better place to live, work and play. These special organizations also organize fantastic special events… with unique entertainment and fun for the whole family! Peoria Magazines is proud to spread the word about major community events and fundraisers through our online Community Impact Calendar.


July 21 - 22 Central Illinois BBQ Throwdown
Illinois CancerCare Foundation | Peoria Riverfront - Peoria

Country music star Trace Adkins takes the stage on opening night of the seventh annual event, which expanded from its original Morton location to the Peoria Riverfront last year. The 2017 Throwdown will feature a KCBS professional BBQ competition featuring some of the country’s finest touring teams, as well as a backyard competition for local BBQ enthusiasts—with over $10,000 in cash and prizes! Other activities include a pie baking competition, bags tournament and kids’ activities, plus top-notch food vendors and two days of music and entertainment. It’s fun for the whole family, and all proceeds stay local to support the clinical trials and research of the Illinois CancerCare Foundation. To date, the event has raised over $70,000 for the Foundation. Gates open at 7pm on Friday and 10am on Saturday.

August 12 Whiskey Baron Run
Central Illinois Landmarks Foundation | Greenhut Memorial GAR Hall - Peoria

This unique event enters its second year in 2017, with proceeds benefiting the historic preservation efforts of the Central Illinois Landmarks Foundation. The 5K Run/1K Walk kicks off at 8am at the GAR Hall, 416 Hamilton Blvd. in downtown Peoria, and winds through historic streets past the homes of Peoria’s whiskey distillers, such as Captain Joseph Greenhut—the wealthiest whiskey baron of them all, and the benefactor of the GAR Hall. Civil War re-enactors will greet runners at the finish line, with participants (of age) receiving a celebratory shot of whiskey. Finally, an open house will feature local historic authors Ken Zurski and Judy Rosella Edwards telling tales from Peoria’s past, plus a fast-paced “living museum” featuring local icons like Mayor Woodruff, Annie Malone, Thomas Lindsay and Richard Pryor.

August 26 Duck Race
The Center for Prevention of Abuse | Eastside Centre - East Peoria

The 29th annual Duck Race benefitting The Center for Prevention of Abuse kicks off at noon with all kinds of fun, family-friendly activities. The ducks start racing at 2pm, and the first 15 through the finish line win the race! The Duck Race is the largest fundraiser for The Center for Prevention of Abuse, which provides safety and support to over 5,000 women, men and children of all ages who have been affected by domestic violence, sexual assault or abuse—and its success is essential to fill the gaps in funding. You can adopt a duck to support this great cause—and every dollar raised goes directly toward The Center’s programs.

Event information is correct to the best of our knowledge, but is subject to change. For our complete calendar of nonprofit fundraisers and major community events, visit peoriamagazines.com/calendar.