‘If We Roast it They Will Come’ – Annual Cornfest celebration returns to Darien

The 61th annual Cornfest runs Sept. 9 to 11 at Daien West Park. This year’s theme is “If We Roast it They Will Come.”

      Darien West Park isat the intersection of Highway 14 and North Road at 335 W. Madison St.

      Cornfest features family friendly activities throughout its three-day run with live music, children’s activities, a parade, fireworks and carnival. The festival also offers sporting tournaments in softball, horseshoe, Hammerschlagen and volleyball and.

      The annual celebration of all things corn has all-you-can-eat sweet corn, donated by Birds Eye Foods, from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday, Sept. 10 and 11.

      The Delavan-Darien Athletic Booster Club is, once again, hosting a breakfast from 7:30 a.m. to 10 a.m. on Saturday and 8:10 to 10:30 a.m. on Sunday.

      Other highlights include the Mini-Rod Tractor Pull at noon on Saturday and the Big Corn Shell-Out at 3 p.m. Sunday, followed by the annual raffle drawing at 4 p.m.

Tri-County Pullers

      Another fun activity for kids of all ages is the Tri-County Pullers Mini Rod Tractor Pull on Saturday afternoon.

      “Tri-County Pullers Inc. brings some of the loudest and fastest paced mini-rod tractor pulling in Southern Wisconsin and Northern Illinois. Creating exciting entertainment for all ages for the last 30 years, the Tri-County Pullers, Inc. is a family based organization pulling at fairs and festivals with the finest built tractors in the nation. We support your local Lions clubs and Fire and EMS organizations,” the Tri-County Pullers website states.

Tournaments, contests

      Every year, Cornfest hosts a 32-team softball tournament. Prizes are awarded for the top placing teams. Games are played Saturday and Sunday.

      Prizes will be awarded to top three teams in championship round. There will be a “toilet bowl” round as well.

      For more information, contact Greg at 262-215-2811.

      The volleyball tournament of competitive co-ed 6’s is Saturday at the Darien West Park volleyball courts

      A mandatory captain’s meeting will be held at 8 a.m. on Saturday.

Rules – USA volleyball rules. Pool play, two games of 25. Games played will be determined by the amount of teams and pools.

      Cornfest also hosts horseshoe and Hammerschlagn games.

      Hammerschlagen is a German game reportedly dating from 1940 in which several contestants try to hammer a nail into a post. The hammer is passed between players until someone countersinks their nail into the wood. It is usually considered an adult game but children can play when accompanied by an adult.

      Hammerschlagen is played just outside the corn barn Friday night and Saturday afternoon. Prizes are awarded to the winners and are subject to change.


      The 2022 Cornfest parade kicks off with the Liberty Bike Ride at 11:15 a.m. on Sunday, Sept. 11, followed by the parade line up, which steps off in downtown Darien at noon.

      The Liberty Bike Ride is an annual tradition that features military veterans on motorcycles giving tribute to our current and lost military men and women with decorated motorcycles.

      Any veteran who would like to ride a motorcycle (all kinds welcome) in the Liberty Bike Ride can fill out the parade form at the Cornfest website, www.dariencornfest.us.

      Line-up for parade units being judged will begin at 10 a.m. Parade participants must be lined up in your spot before 11 a.m. to be judged.

      The parade route is about three-quarters of a mile long. There will be two reviewing stands the first will be in front of the Farmers Inn and the other on Madison Street.

      Parade line-ups are sent out in advance. If there are any questions (including those on parade day), go to the staging area at Darien Legion Hall.

      Cornfest awards ribbons for novelties, horses and tractors. Ribbons and cash prizes are awarded for floats.


      The carnival is open all three days of the event with wristband specials at $25 from 6 to 10 p.m. on Friday, noon to 4 p.m. and 5 to 9 p.m. on Saturday.

      Headlining on the Miller Lite Stage this year are the Two Beer Tommy on Friday and the The Toys on Saturday. Both bands take the stage at 7 p.m.

Schedule of events

Friday, Sept. 9

6 to 9 p.m. – Carnival rides

6 p.m. – Co-ed softball, Hammerschlagn, carnival

7 p.m. – Two Beer Tommy on the Miller Lite Stage

9 p.m. – Fireworks

Saturday, Sept. 10

7:30 to 10 a.m., Booster Club breakfast

All day – 32-Team Men’s Softball Tournament, volleyball tournament, horseshoe Tournament, merchandise and crafts, bingo, Hammerschlagn

11 a.m. to 4 p.m. – Darien Women’s Club Carmel Apples Delights

Noon – Cornhole Turnament

Noon to 3 p.m. – Jess Piano

Noon p.m. – Mini-Rods Tractor Pull

7 p.m. – The Toys on the Miller Lite Stage

Sunday, Sept. 11

8:10 to 10:30 a.m., Booster Club breakfast

All day – 32-Team Men’s Softball Tournament, horseshoe tournament, merchandise, crafts, bingo, carnival

11 a.m. to 6 p.m. – Darien Women’s Club Carmel Apples Delights

11:15 p.m. – Liberty Bike Ride

Noon – Parade, downtown Darien

3 p.m. – The Big Corn Shell-Out Raffle Drawing

4 p.m. – Raffle drawing ($1 each or six for $5)

      For more information on Cornfest events, go to www.dariencornfest.com.

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