Eckert’s kicks off Strawberry Festival this weekend and other southwestern IL events

Noon Friday, May 12 is the deadline to appear in next week’s What’s Happening. We must receive your event in writing with a contact phone number for questions.

Due to the number of submissions received, events may run only one time in print. Submitted event info will be edited and run the week before the event date.

Email: Mail to: Lifestyle, Belleville News-Democrat, P.O. Box 427, Belleville, IL 62222-0427. Questions, call Jennifer Green at 618-239-2643.

Farmers Markets

Nashville Farmers Market — 7-11 a.m. Thursdays. In front of the Washington County Courthouse at 101 E. St. Louis St., Nashville. This year’s kickoff includes a plant swap, sponsored by the Washington County Master Gardeners. 618-327-3700 or

Swansea Farmers Market — 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Thursdays. Rural King parking lot, 2801 N. Illinois St., Swansea. Fresh local produce, baked goods, unique handmade crafts and more. Rain or shine. 618-520-5107 or

Monroe County Farmers Market - Columbia — 4-7 p.m. Thursdays. Turner Hall, 211 E. Cherry St., Columbia. Local vendors offering plants and produce, baked treats and more.

Monroe County Farmers Market - Waterloo — 7:30 a.m. to noon Saturdays. Monroe County Annex, 901 Illinois Ave., Waterloo. Produce, plants, baked goods, coffee vendors and so much more. Live entertainment and activities for the kids too.

Belleville Old Town Farmers Market — 7:30 a.m. to noon Saturdays. Northwest corner of East Washington and South Charles streets, Belleville. Fresh produce, grass fed beef and other meats, plants, honeys, jams and jellies, crafters, and more.

Alton Farmers & Artisans Market — 8 a.m. to noon Saturdays. Corner of Landmarks Boulevard and Henry Street, Alton. An abundance of fresh produce, crafts, baked goods, plants and flowers, locally-raised, hormone-free meat, handmade soaps, jewelry, artwork, and much more. 618-463-1016 or

Land of Goshen Community Market — 8 a.m. to noon Saturdays. 100 St. Louis St., Edwardsville. Open rain or shine. Fresh, locally grown produce, baked goods, crafts, live music and so much more. 618-307-6045 or

Vine Street Market at O’Fallon Station — 8 a.m. to noon Saturdays. O’Fallon Station, 212 E. 1st St., O’Fallon. Locally grown vegetables, flowers, fruits, eggs, cheese and meats. A selection of bakers and sweet treats along with coffee, craft brew beverages and artisans. Live music, patio seating, food truck on site. Bicycle and pet friendly. 618-624-0139 or

Tower Grove Farmers Markets — 8 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Saturdays and 4 p.m. to sunset Tuesdays. Just west of Center Cross Drive in Tower Grove Park at 4256 Magnolia Ave., St. Louis. Fresh, local produce, eggs, meats, a variety of vendors and goods.

Market Days — 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, May 13. Veterans Memorial Park, 800 S. 27th St., Mt. Vernon. A variety of vendors will sell diverse items such as antiques, collectibles, handmade items, plants, jewelry, kettle corn, fair food and more! Admission and parking are free.

University City Farmers Market — 8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Saturdays. Along the Delmar Loop, 6655 Delmar Blvd., rear lot, University City, St. Louis. Fresh fruits and vegetables, cheeses, grass-fed beef, free-range eggs, trout, poultry, pork products, honey, baked goods, jams and jellies, nuts, coffee, chocolates and more.

Litchfield Pickers Market — 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Sunday, May 14. 400 N. State St., Downtown Litchfield. Vintage, antique, industrial, architectural, repurposed and collectible goods. 866-733-5833 or


World Migratory Bird Day at the Saint Louis Zoo — 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Friday, May 12. Saint Louis Zoo, 1 Government Drive, St. Louis. Activities, educational engagements and themed-treats will be available throughout the Zoo, as guests learn about the importance of helping migratory birds. Free and open to the public.

St. Luke’s Annual Rummage Sale — 5-7 p.m. Friday, May 12, and 8 a.m. to noon Saturday, May 13. 226 N. Church St., Belleville. Admission $5 on Friday, free on Saturday. Bag sale 11 a.m. Bags of clothing $2 both days. 618-397-2295.

Damiansville & Albers Village-wide Spring Garage Sales — 7 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, May 13. Some sales will be open Thursday-Friday, May 11-12.) Exit 34 off of Interstate 64. Something for everyone.

Metals & Electronics Recycle Drive — 9 a.m. to noon Saturday, May 13. Public Parking Lot, 227 W. Main St., Collinsville. Accepting office equipment, vehicles, electronics, batteries, appliances, machinery. Fees for TV/Monitor, CRT. No paper, glass, plastic, wood, cardboard or tires. 618-344-7232.

Scott AFB Airshow — 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday-Sunday, May 13-14. Scott Air Force Base. The show features numerous displays, demonstrations and performances, including the U.S. Navy’s Blue Angels. For more information on the schedule and parking, visit

Veterans Affairs: A Salute to Veterans — 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, May 13. Jefferson Barrack VA Hospital, 1 Jefferson Barracks Drive, St. Louis. Includes: Navy Band Great Lakes “The Voyagers,” St. Louis musician Veronica Mary Agnes, Show ‘n’ Shine Car Show, food trucks, Navy Ceremonial Guard Drill Team, yoga & tai chi, food demos, Veterans Resource Village where veterans, caregivers and community supporters can get information, and more. Free and open to the public.

R.E.C. Fest — 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, May 13. National Great Rivers Museum, 2 Locks and Dam Way, Alton. R.E.C. (Recreation, Education, and Conservation) Fest is the largest recreation and safety festival in the Riverbend. More than 20 partnering organizations will feature booths and activities that teach about outdoor recreation and safety with demonstration, live wildlife displays and more. Free and open to the public. Rain or shine. 618-462-6979.

Strawberry Festival — 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturdays-Sundays starting May 13 through the weekend of May 27. Eckert’s Belleville Farm, 951 S. Green Mount Road, Belleville. An all-American carnival with fun on the farm for the whole family. Enjoy tractor rides out to the pick-your-own strawberry fields, festival foods, carnival rides, a wagon ride, a petting zoo, and more through Memorial Day. This will be an unticketed event, but fees will be charged for some activities.

The Strawberry Festival at Eckert’s Belleville Farm takes place every weekend in May starting May 13. For details about the festival, visit
The Strawberry Festival at Eckert’s Belleville Farm takes place every weekend in May starting May 13. For details about the festival, visit


Euchre — 6:30 p.m. Friday, May 12. Smithton Senior Center, 711 S. Main St., Smithton. Doors open at 6 p.m. Partner night. Snacks welcome. Water, soda and coffee will be available for purchase. Masks not required. 618-791-8769 or 618-698-3785.

Metro Cribbage Club — 12:30 p.m. Mondays. American Legion Post 365, 1022 Vandalia St., Collinsville. For more information, contact Yvonne Bright, 618-344-1521 or

Troy Senior Center Bingo — 12:30 p.m. Mondays. Skating Rink, 284 Riggin Road, Troy. Includes light snack, cash prizes. No cost to play, no RSVP required. 618-667-2022.

Purse Bingo — 7 p.m. Thursday, May 18. Silver Creek Saloon, 2520 Mascoutah Ave., Belleville. Tickets are $35 for 10 bingo games, each an opportunity to win a designer purse. Three reverse bingo games ($5 each) to win special prizes. Appetizers provided, cash bar. Tickets and tables available at or at the door. Proceeds to support Holy Rosary Ladies’ Sodality.

Holy Virgin Mary & Shoghagat Armenian Church Musical Trivia Extravaganza — 7 p.m. Saturday, May 20. Holy Virgin Mary & Shoghagat Armenian Church, 400 Huntwood Road, Swansea. Celebrate music from the 1960s, ‘70s, ‘80s and ‘90s. Includes silent auction, heads or tails. BYO food and drinks. Cost: $20 per person in advance, $25 after May 13 or at the door. Reserve a table of eight and get free mulligans. All proceeds will go towards maintaining the church grounds and facility. 618-531-0972 or


Twilight Thursdays Concert Series: The Stax Records Catalog — 6-8 p.m. Thursday, May 11. Missouri History Museum, 5700 Lindell Blvd., St. Louis. In 1957 Jim Stewart created Stax Records in Memphis, Tennessee, a label that went on to produce top-selling artists from Otis Redding and Johnnie Taylor to the Staple Singers and Isaac Hayes. Enjoy the integrated sounds of Stax with lead vocals by Gene Jackson and Marty Abdullah. Bring family, friends, food and blankets/lawn chairs, and revel in the music as the sun sets. The area’s best food trucks will be on hand. Concert-goers are invited to park on the lot at the Loop Trolley facility located at 5875 Delmar Ave.

St. Louis Symphony Orchestra: Marvel Studios’ ‘Black Panther’ — 7 p.m. Friday, May 12, and 2 p.m. and 7 p.m. Saturday, May 13. Powell Hall, 718 N. Grand Blvd., St. Louis. In 2018, Marvel Studios’ “Black Panther” quickly became a global sensation and cultural phenomenon, showing a new dimension of what superhero films could be. Now you can relive the excitement of T’Challa becoming king and battling Killmonger all while the SLSO performs Ludwig Göransson’s Oscar-winning score live to picture.

Belleville Philharmonic Society Youth Orchestra Concert: Cinema Memories — 2 p.m. Saturday, May 13. First Baptist Church, 10401 Lincoln Trail, Fairview Heights. Featuring music from John Williams and popular films. Free will donation welcome. No ticket required.

Clubs & Support Groups

Parents of Addicted Loved Ones — 7-8:30 p.m. Tuesdays. Online via Zoom. The PAL group provides education, support and hope to family members and loved ones of someone who has an addiction of substance use disorder. Free and open to all. For info or to join the Zoom meeting, contact Craig at 618-567-6095.

O’Fallon Sunrise Rotary Meeting — 6:45 a.m. Wednesdays. O’Fallon Township Building, 801 E. State St., O’Fallon. 618-210-8156 or

O’Fallon Senior Meeting — 6 p.m. Wednesday, May 17. O’Fallon Township Office, 801 E. State St., O’Fallon. White Elephant Bingo – bring an item you no longer want as a prize and join in for refreshments and fun. 850-316-6082.

National Alliance on Mental Illness: NAMI Connection Recovery Support Group — 6:30-8 p.m. Wednesdays. Online via Zoom. Free peer-to-peer support group for adults with a mental health condition working towards recovery. Every Wednesday. Open the Zoom app and enter 3914844542. For information: or 618-798-9788.

Eagle Wings Motorcycle Association — 6 p.m. Thursday, May 18. Alfonzo’s Pizzeria, 611 Edwardsville Road, Troy. Recruiting anyone interested in riding motorcycles, having fun and meeting new people. It doesn’t matter what kind of motorcycle you ride, all are welcome. Visit for upcoming rides and events. For more info:


Waterloo VFW Post #6504 Fish Fry — 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Fridays. Waterloo VFW Post #6504, 406 Veterans Drive, Waterloo. Traditional Menu of cod, walleye, catfish, shrimp, chicken, chicken strips, hamburgers, fries, slaw, hush puppies, onion rings, fried green beans and fried mushrooms. Cash bar available. Dine-in or carryout. Credit/debit cards accepted. Orders can be called in at 618-939-7999.

O’Fallon Fish K of C Fry — 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. and 4-7 p.m. Fridays. Knights of Columbus Hall, 402 E. U.S. 50, O’Fallon. Traditional menu of cod, tilapia, catfish, hamburgers, hot dogs, pork steaks and several side dishes. Dine-in and carryout. Credit cards accepted. Orders can be called in at 618-632-6229.

Swansea Fish Stand – 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. Fridays. 216 Service St., Swansea. Cod, walleye, catfish, shrimp and more. Open for carryout, call-in and dine-in orders. 618-222-7171.

KC Club and Event Center Fish Fry — 3-7 p.m. Fridays. 5420 Old Collinsville Road, O’Fallon. Catfish plates, cod plates, barbecue chicken, fries, cole slaw, hush puppies, baked beans, potato salad. Dine in or carryout and drink specials. 618-632-5222 or

Friday Fish Fry — 4-8 p.m. Fridays. Millstadt Sportsman’s Club, 4915 Schmidt Lane, Belleville. Cod, shrimp, walleye, salmon patties. Carryouts available. 618-476-1891.

Aviston Legion Fish Fry — 4:30-7 p.m. Fridays. American Legion Post 1239, 601 S. Clinton, Aviston. Cod (baked or fried), catfish, shrimp, hush puppies, chicken strips, fries, baked potato, slaw, applesauce. Dine-in and carryout. 618-228-7311.

Okawville American Legion Fish Fry — 5-8 p.m. Fridays. American Legion Post 233, 205 N. Hanover St., Okawville. Dine in or carryout. Also serving lunch 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Monday-Friday with a salad bar. Pizza made fresh and served every day.

Mother’s Day Breakfast — 8-11:30 a.m. Sunday, May 14. American Legion Post 1026, 600 N. Bertha St., Albers. Serving pork sausage, ham, eggs, fried potatoes, pancakes, biscuits and gravy. Cost: $12 adults, $6 kids 5/12, under 5 free. 618-248-5505.

Reservations Required

Medicare Q&A with Jon Bergmann — 6-7 p.m. Monday, May 15. Glen Carbon Centennial Library, 198 S. Main St., Glen Carbon. Bring your questions on how to register and what is covered when you sign up for Medicare. Requires registration.

Virtual Evening Flow Yoga — 5:30 p.m. Wednesday, May 17. Online via Zoom. A Slow Flow mixed levels practice that will lead you through a series of yoga poses that focus on strengthening, lengthening, and stretching. Requires registration. Instructed by Anne Hughes. Register at

Leaps of Love Just for Fun Friday: Dueling Pianos — 7-11 p.m. Friday, May 19. Lindendale Park Ballroom, 2005 Park Hill Drive, Highland. Live entertainment, cash bar, BYO snacks. Tickets: $20 in advance, $25 at the door. Proceeds benefit the 2024 Ms. LOL Pageant.

Virtual Saturday Morning Yoga — 9:30 a.m. Saturday, May 20. Online via Zoom. Get fit and healthy when you join us for an energizing session of yoga with instructor Sarah Hartwig. Space is limited. Registration required. Register at

St. Clair County Office on Aging Triple Crown Dance — 4-8:30 p.m. Wednesday, May 24. Belle-Clair Fairgrounds, 200 South Belt East, Belleville. Wear your fancy hats or fascinators and join St. Clair County and celebrate seniors at the Belle Clair Fairgrounds. RSVP Country Western Band 4-5:30 p.m. Dinner from Royel Catering 5:30-6:30 p.m. Frankie and the Houseshakers 6:30-8:30 p.m. Tickets are $8 if purchased by Friday, May 19; $10 at the door. Call 618-234-4410, ext. 7034 or 7044 for more information or to purchase tickets.

O’Fallon Volunteer Fire Company 24th annual Spring Golf Classic — 11 a.m. Friday, June 2. Tamarack Country Club, 800 Tamarack Lane, Shiloh. The 18-hole, four-person scramble starts promptly at 11 a.m. Registration fee: $100 per person or $400 per team, includes green fees and cart, refreshments, lunch at the turn, dinner after the tournament. Cash prizes to top teams in each flight, longest drive competition, closest to the pin, hole-in-one prize. For info: 618-624-4515 or

Miss Illinois Juneteenth Pageant — 6 p.m. Friday, June 3. Southern Illinois University East St. Louis, Wyvetter H. Younge Campus, Converse Avenue, East St. Louis. The Illinois Juneteenth Committee has launched a search for the next Miss Illinois Juneteenth Queen to represent the state of Illinois in 4 th Annual National Miss Juneteenth Scholarship Pageant in the fall. To be eligible to participate, one must meet the following: Be an African American female between the ages of 15 and 18; be born a female; be enrolled in school and have at least a 3.0 Grade Point Average; be able to commit to public appearances; have a cause to promote; be able to participate in the National Pageant. A $2,500 scholarship will be awarded to the Miss Illinois Juneteenth 2023 Queen. Other categories will be awarded during the ceremony. 618-514-3199, 312-533-9382 or

Party on the Patio — 6-9 p.m. Saturday, June 3. Schlafly Highland Square, 907 Main St., Highland. This event raises funds to support health care initiatives at St. Joseph’s Hospital Highland. The casual garden party style event will feature a full menu of appetizers, drinks and live music by the band, Phoenix. Tickets are $150 for attendees and are available now at

Granite City Senior Social Club: Blast from the Past — 12:30-1:30 p.m. Sunday, June 4. Granite City Township Hall, 2060 Delmar Ave., Granite City. Doors open at 11:30 a.m. Catered meal and entertainment. Alton Little Theater community outreach presentation of the Living History Tour, A Tribute to Minnie Pearl, attendance prizes, 50/50 drawing, quilt raffle and more. Advance ticket sales through May 28. Cost: $13 for members, $15 non-members. For tickets and info: Diana, 618-444-6771; Marty, 618-797-6749; Granite City Township Office, 618-877-0513.