The 46th Annual Homestead Festival comes to you in only

*All Events Subject to Change

2016 Homestead Festival Grand Marshal, Gary "Frog" Swanson


Gary "Frog" Swanson - 2016 Homestead Festival Grand Marshal.Gary Swanson is the Grand Marshal for the 45th Annual Bureau County Homestead Festival. Gary was selected by the festival steering committee and managers for his dedication to the community.

Gary is a 1965 graduate of Princeton High School. He graduated from the University of Wisconsin in 1970 with a degree in electronics and was married to Janet Carver in 1974. He and his wife lived in the upstairs apartment at the Princeton Elks Lodge for several years where he did maintenance and ground-keeping for the Lodge.

After starting a stint as Bureau County Deputy, he was hired by the Princeton Police Department in 1975. He worked as a patrolman until 1995 when he advanced to investigator. In 2004, he retired from the PPD and has worked part-time at the Bureau County Court House since.

Many of you know our Grand Marshal for his career in music. He started a band in the 60s with Keith Knudsen who later went on to play drums for the Doobie Brothers. Over the years, our Grand Marshal has been part of several bands, including "Shillings", "Junction", "Alibi" and finally "The Generics."

He is a world-class volunteer. He has set up sound for the Bureau County Convoy for Cancer, Bureau County Relay for Life, March of Dimes Walk, United Way Banquets, Memorial Day Services, Veterans Day Services, Bureau County Fairgrounds, St. John Evangelical Lutheran Church, Princeton High School Sports and many other functions, including Bureau County Homestead Festival. He was a volunteer MC for the Lions Club and Elks Lodge drawdowns.

He is very active in the Princeton Elks Lodge 1461 where he was an officer and has served on many committees including Christmas Baskets, Easter Bunny, clean-up committee and has played for many Elks fundraisers for free. He was recently named "Elk of the Year."

He encourages young people to volunteer for their church, school and community. We celebrate "Glory Days" by recognizing the accomplishments of Gary Swanson and his contributions to our community.







Past Homestead Festival Grand Marshals


2010 - Gary & Bea Coates
2011 - Steve Samet
2012 - Lou Brown
2013 - Penny Best
2014 - Julia McCutchan
2015 - Jan Milles

  • 50/50 Raffle
    Buy a chance to win Big Bucks and help support the Homestead Festival!
    ...More Info
  • PJWC Baby Contest
    Make sure to get your little one entered into the PJWC Annual baby Contest. A Festival favorite!
    ...More Info
  • BBQ Rib Cook OFF
    Sunday event with a $30 entry fee. Ribs only cooked on site. 1st, 2nd and 3rd place cash prizes.
    ...More Info
  • Eddie Shaw & the Wolfgang Blues
    BLUES CONCERT @ Alexander Park Sat. 4:30PM-6:30PM Food, beverage and spirits available.
    ...More Info
  • Jaycees Beer Garden
    Darius Miller Park
    Gates Open 8pm / Close 1am
    Music & Entertainment at 8:30pm

Volunteers Needed!

The Homestead festival is looking for volunteers for this year's ever growing Homestead Festival!

It is so much fun it will not even seem like work! Come join us! If interested, please contact Tracy Makransky at tracymakransky@gmail.com!



2017 Homstead Festival Corporate Sponsors



Photo Credits: Mike Vaughn, Lori Tuft, Kathy Costerisan, Sam Justice and Bureau County Republican staff.

Copyright © 2017 Homestead Festival, Princeton, Illinois 61356, All Rights Reserved
2 Geeks Web Design presents the design, development and maintenance of this Web Site to the Homestead Festival Committee and City of Princeton as a gift to our Community.

Looking for a Form? Click Here! Homestead Festival Logo

Darius Miller Park


View Larger Map
Close Menu

Soldiers and Sailors Park


View Larger Map
Close Menu

Bureau County Historical Museum


View Larger Map
Close Menu

Prairie Arts Center


View Larger Map
Close Menu

Princeton Power Plant


View Larger Map
Close Menu

Owen Love Joy Homestead


View Larger Map
Close Menu

Courthouse Lawn


View Larger Map
Close Menu

Bureau County Metro Center


View Larger Map
Close Menu

Princeton High School


View Larger Map
Close Menu

Alexander Park


View Larger Map
Close Menu

Heartland Main Bank Parking Lot


View Larger Map
Close Menu

Wise Guy's Bar & Grill


View Larger Map
Close Menu

Sullivan's Food


View Larger Map
Close Menu

Princeton Moose Lodge


View Larger Map
Close Menu

Bureau County Fairgrounds


View Larger Map
Close Menu

South Main Street


View Larger Map
Close Menu

Grace Performing Arts Center


View Larger Map
Close Menu

St. Matthew's Lutheran Church


View Larger Map
Close Menu

Central Bank


View Larger Map
Close Menu

Apollo Theater


View Larger Map
Close Menu

Princeton Animal Care Clinic


View Larger Map
Close Menu

Princeton Public Library


View Larger Map
Close Menu

Sheriff's Department Parking Lot


View Larger Map
Close Menu