CRYSTAL LAKE – Three-year-old Paityn Prince was more than ready to see Modern Day Romeos.
The band was scheduled to go on at 7:30 p.m., the last band of the second night of the Crystal Lake Centennial Kick-Off Festival at Three Oaks Recreation Area, and the preceding band hadn’t finished playing yet.
“I want to go watch them set up,” she told her parents, Kira and Jeff Prince, as they sat at a picnic table, finishing up corn on the cob and nachos.
Paityn is the band’s No. 1 groupie, her mother said.
“They gave her a drum stick and a guitar pick, and she’s been hooked ever since,” Kira Prince said.
The Crystal Lake festival was the fourth time the family has gone to see Modern Day Romeos, a group that bills itself as the “quintessential party band” and plays popular classics from the ‘80s and ‘90s and newer hits.
Paityn now knows all the words to Macklemore and Ryan Lewis’s “Thrift Shop,” Kira Prince said.
The Princes weren’t the only family out enjoying the cool fall weather – though Jeff Prince said he was ready to check out the fireplace built into the pavilion near the stage.
Children were climbing over the playground and hitting the carnival rides, including the Tilt-a-Whirl and Matterhorn, and trying their hand at games. Magicians and clowns performed, and fireworks were set to cap the night.
The festival is part of a yearlong celebration of the city’s 100th birthday since it was incorporated.
It was also a chance to check out the three-year-old Three Oaks Recreation Area, said Kathy Bock, who has lived in Crystal Lake on and off for 30 years but hadn’t made it down to the park before.
“I’m happy I came because I think it’s just pretty,” she said. “The location is beautiful.”
Another day of festivities is planned for noon to 6 p.m. Sunday.
Three bands will be playing at the main stage, with Libido Funk Circus headlining, while the beach area hosts a magician and stilt walker, a comedy juggler and kite-flying demonstrations.
Admission is $5 to the Main Stage for adults, with free entry available to those 16 and under, seniors and people with military IDs. Parking is $10 on-site, but a free shuttle service will run from the old Walmart.