Sycamore’s block party ‘a good time overall’

By Shelby Devitt

Sycamore is the place for beer, cupcakes, music and more at Discover Sycamore’s 11th Annual Block Party Saturday night, near 407 W. State St.

Live music, a beer garden, food vendors, a bags tournament, a dog show and giant inflatables are a few of the attractions, said Discover Sycamore Director Lauren Diehl.

Those with serious bags skills can win $100 in “Chamber Bucks,” which can be used at over 400 businesses in the area. Second place wins $75 in Chamber Bucks, Diehl said. Competitive bags players can register online at The cost to register is $20 before Friday or in person Saturday for $25. Contestants should arrive and sign in by 3:30 p.m.

The beer garden will open at 4 p.m. and serve alcohol until 11 p.m. In the meantime, DJ Mark Charvat will spin from 6 to 8 p.m., and cover band Red Woody will take the stage from 8 to 11 p.m.

“Not only will this be a fun community event, but it’s free,” Diehl said. “There’s no cover charge. Afterward, you can go out in downtown Sycamore. We have a variety of bars and restaurants.”

Local food vendors also will set up, including Culver’s, BBQ Express, PJ’s Courthouse Tavern and Grille, and Sweet Dream Desserts whose specialty is cupcakes.

“Come out for the cupcakes,” said Deanna Watkins, Sweet Dream Desserts owner. Some of the unique cupcake flavors include French toast and bacon, wango mango, tiramisu, apple cider spice and caramel apple. Cupcakes sell at $1.75 each and Watkins sells traditional favorites, too.

“Our best seller is chocolate ganache,” Watkins said.

PJ’s Courthouse Tavern and Grille has come every year to the Block Party since its inception, said bartender Sean Sinucane. The PJ’s booth will serve pork chops, brats, hot dogs, bottled water and pop.

“It’s a good time overall,” Sinucane said.

Other attractions include a competitive Bark on the Block dog show, put on by Huckleberry’s Pet Parlor at 4 p.m., and giant inflatables, including an obstacle course, Diehl said.

“It’s fun to kind of mix it up and try something new,” Diehl said.