Stroll on State FAQ

As you prepare to kick-off the holiday season at Stroll on State, be assured that the RACVB team and the City of Rockford Police and Fire Departments, are focused on safety and security, while creating a welcoming experience for guests. Stroll on State is committed to creating a safe, comfortable, and fun experience for every one of our guests. In planning your family-friendly experience, please see the FAQS and Code of Conduct below.

Download our FAQ document here.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is Stroll on State family friendly?

YES! We pride ourselves on being a family friendly event that is put on for the community and by the community. All of our attractions are designed for families, students, couples and seniors alike.

What are your safety protocols related to Covid-19?

We take the health of our guests, volunteers, staff and community very seriously.  Event organizers have worked closely with the Winnebago County Health Department and City of Rockford to ensure the event is following every recommendation and mandate and also put additional safety measures in place.

  • Additional space throughout the footprint to allow more social distancing
  • Three tree lighting productions to allow spacing
  • Reimagined Santa experience to prevent lines and long waits with those outside your immediate family
  • Mask requirement for all indoor activities
  • More space between food vendors
  • Additional restrooms and sanitizer stations
  • Sanitizer stations throughout the footprint and at the entrance/exit of indoor attractions
  • Additional measures also in place

Are there any additional road closures for this year's Stroll on State?

Stroll on State will take place Saturday, November 27th. Out of an abundance of caution, additional roads around the event will be closed to vehicular traffic. 

Please note that in addition to closures previously announced, Chestnut and Walnut Streets between Church Street and 3rd Street will be closed from 10:30 AM to 9 PM. This step is being taken by the City of Rockford and Stroll on State to ensure the safety of event attendees. Residents and businesses should anticipate increased traffic and parking in surrounding neighborhoods and plan for alternative routes.

How do I plan my time at Stroll?

Use the website! Strollonstate.com is the very best tool to map out your time at Stroll. The website will be updated throughout the year and have the latest maps available for download. Don’t forget to review the list of vendors so that you know what you want to eat and where you want to shop!

Can I bring my pet to Stroll on State?

We know pets are like family, however, pets/animals are not allowed within the Stroll footprint. If you are found with a pet, you will be asked to leave the festival grounds.  This policy is due to the overall festival environment; the presence of food and drink is often stressful for animals and has led to bites and other incidents. It is cold, crowded, and loud. This environment can be very stressful for animals and a usually well-behaved pet may feel the need to protect its owner by attacking another person or animal. Anyone bringing an animal to Stroll on State will be responsible for and liable for any damage or injury caused by the animal. Traveling into Rockford with your pet? Be a responsible and loving dog-parent by leaving them at an animal kennel before the festival hours. For Americans with Disabilities Act info, please see the “SERVICE ANIMALS” section below.

Service Animals

Under the Americans with Disabilities Act, the definition of “service animal” is limited to a dog (or pony) that is individually trained to do work or perform tasks for an individual with a disability who is in attendance. The task(s) performed by the dog must be directly related to the person’s disability. Under the ADA, “comfort,” “therapy,” or “emotional support animals” do not meet the definition of a service animal. – U.S. Dept. of Justice.  Unfortunately, we have had people abuse the right to have a service animal with them at the festival and these dogs have caused problems on-site. These pet-owners are taking advantage of people with disabilities, threatening the health and safety of all people and of service animals. If you have a certified service animal that you are always required to have with you, you’ll be required to have your service animal with you and ON LEASH at all times. Under the ADA, service animals must be harnessed, leashed, or tethered, unless these devices interfere with the service animal’s work or the individual’s disability prevents using these devices.

Can I have a bike, scooter or skateboard at Stroll on State?

Do to space and safety reasons, bikes, scooters and skateboards are not allowed within the Stroll footprint.  If you are onsite with one of these items, you will be asked to remove it from the festival grounds and store it offsite at your own risk.

Where do I park?

The absolute best option is to park at one of our three shuttle locations (Forest City Church on Alpine Rd., YMCA on Y Blvd., and Crusader Community Health on W. State St.) However, if you prefer to drive, please refer to the Stroll on State map. Many surface lots are used as part of the festival and garages may be reserved. Parking, particularly on the east side, fills up very quickly.

How much does it cost to attend Stroll on State?

Stroll on State has no admission cost and all attractions are free!  The only fees are for food, drinks and merchandise.  You can have a great time and not spend any money at all!

Weather

Stroll on State is a “Rain, Snow or Shine” event but in the rare case of severe or threatening weather or other emergencies, the Stroll on State management, in consultation with the City of Rockford, may choose to cancel or close the event. 

Security

Security personnel are on duty throughout the grounds for the entire event. Your cooperation with them is greatly appreciated! Please report any incident to an Event Staff employee.

First Aid

First Aid is available at Event Central located at the corner of 3rd and State.  Staff is equipped to handle minor injuries, accidents and other emergencies. An emergency service vehicle will be on site to handle any other medical emergencies.  Event staff wearing a red fanny pack have bandaids available and can help direct you to the first aid area.

Notice of Filming and Photography

When you enter, photography, audio, and video recording may occur. By entering the event premises, you consent to being photographed, and for the Rockford Area Convention & Visitors Bureau to use festival images.

Trash

Please dispose of all litter and recycling in the appropriate receptacles.  Every little bit helps, and we appreciate your consideration in properly disposing of trash.

Lost Child Procedure

Contact Event Staff or on-site emergency personnel immediately to report a lost child.  All updates will be reported to Event Central at 3rd and State.  Event staff will work directly with the City of Rockford Police department for all reports of a lost child.

Will there be handicap accessible facilities?

Absolutely! Event Staff is happy to assist with anything that you need.  Event Central, located at 3rd and State is a great place to ask any questions or find a staff member wearing a red fanny pack for additional assistance within the grounds.

Alcohol

YOU MUST BE 21 YEARS OF AGE to consume alcohol within the festival grounds. ID’S WILL BE CHECKED. Bring your ID to drink.

No outside alcoholic beverages will be allowed on the grounds; there will be alcoholic beverages available in the beer tent.  Last call will be 30 minutes before the beer tent closes.

All alcohol purchased at an outdoor beer tent will be served in a designated festival cup and cannot be taken inside of stores or restaurants.  Any alcohol purchased inside a restaurant cannot be brought outside into the festival.  Event security and police will remove any alcohol within the Stroll on State footprint that is not in an official event cup.

What can I find to eat at Stroll on State?

We have over 40 vendors selling food and merchandise!  Many of our local downtown restaurants also offer grab and go options.  There is something that will surely please every palate and budget!

Who pays for Stroll on State?

Stroll on State relies heavily on generous community sponsors.  Over 50 businesses and organizations partner to put on Stroll each year.  It truly is an event for the community and by the community.

What can I do at Stroll on State?

Both sides of the river feature food and merchandise vendors, live music, S’mores, Hot Chocolate, horse and wagon rides and more.  The Stroll on State parade kicks off at 2PM and is not to be missed!  Each tree will have its own tree-lighting this year and fireworks will go off at 8PM.

2021 Event Timeline

  • Dasher Dash 5k - 12pm
  • Bus Shuttles 1st departure from off-site locations - 1:45pm
  • Stroll on State - 2-9pm (all attractions and vendors open)
  • Merry & Bright parade - 2pm
  • Tree Lighting Production - 4:45 (1st/State), 5:45 (Davis Park) and 6:45 (Main/Mulberry)
  • Tree lighting - approximately 30 minutes into production
  • Fireworks from Jefferson St. Bridge - 8pm
  • Last shuttle departure from event to off-site locations - 9:30pm

Cash or Credit?

Have no fear, both are accepted!  Many vendors and businesses accept credit and debit cards and for those that don’t, we have plenty of IB&T ATM machines placed throughout the event footprint.

How can I be involved?

Stroll on State is always looking for volunteers! If you love the event, become apart of it and volunteer! Visit our volunteer page for more information on ways to volunteer.

Will the Bird Scooters Be Available?

Yes! Bird Scooters will be available in the festival footprint in addition to their designated downtown zone which is bounded by Auburn Street, Central Avenue, Morgan Street and Third Street. They will be slowed down to 1-2 miles per hour in festival area to keep riders and guests safe. 

Code of Conduct

Stroll on State is committed to creating a safe, comfortable and fun experience for every one of our guests.

For the safety of Stroll on State guests, protesters and/or demonstrations of any kind will not be permitted within the Stroll on State footprint. Individuals or groups may not disrupt, impede, or block flow of pedestrian or vehicular traffic or be disruptive in any way to the event or guests. Amplified sound and/or megaphones may not be used. Protest signs or gear may not be held or attached/ to any building or property within the footprint. Additionally, protesting, including but not limited to rallies, marches, chalking, panhandling, pamphlets, posters, or handouts of any kind will not be permitted within the Stroll on State festival footprint. Any removal of or damage to Stroll on State decorations will be prosecuted.

These actions can get you removed from Stroll on State:

  • Irresponsible or unsafe use of alcohol.
  • Accessing restricted areas without proper credentials.
  • Taunting, abusive or offensive language.
  • Obscene or offensive gestures, including the use of obscene or offensive gestures through imagery or symbolism including banners, signs and other means of visual propaganda.
  • Possession/use/sale of illegal drugs.
  • Public urination or defecation (outside of a proper and/or public restroom).
  • Fighting or engaging in any action that may harm, endanger, threaten or bring discomfort to anyone.
  • Damage, destruction, vandalism or theft of any property.
  • Participating in any activity that humiliates anyone or insults their human dignity.

Any individual who violates this Code of Conduct will be removed from the festival grounds and law enforcement may/will be notified.