Just after sunset in Galesburg Saturday night, the 2018 Railroad Days went from family fun to fright.
"We just heard like kids yelling and screaming and i knew that something was going to happen, like a fight or something," said festivalgoer Dustin Hathaway.
Moments later, shots rang out.
"All of sudden I see about 150 people running across the gross here towards me like a stampede of elephants and somebody said shots had been fired," said carnival worker Robert Davies.
Ride operator Robert Smith was there when the argument started and he says he tried to break up the fight.
"He went out back here started fighting right here in front of my train station. And I tried to go out there and be the mediator to make sure the kids was safe, and then told them to go the police were coming and this is a festival for kids why ruin it?"
Dustin Hathaway was eating dinner with his family at the festival when the fight broke out. Moments like this upset Hathaway because he says it prevents families and kids from having fun.
"It’s sad because it’s a place for families and kids, you can’t even take your family out here like that anymore. They can’t enjoy a childhood like how i enjoyed or anybody else enjoyed," said Hathaway.
He feels the violence in Galesburg has been getting worse and families are being forced to keep their kids at home.
"Families I think are just getting a little bit too scared to even bring their kids out here in the daytime, the violence is just, it’s bad. This is a small town and we don’t need that."
Galesburg police have yet to comment on the incident and were unable to confirm why the fight started.