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The largest man-made lake in Illinois (26,000 acres), is a premier location for outdoor sports. Known to sailors, it is one of the best and most challenging for sailboats. There is also boating, fishing, hunting, bird watching, sand beaches, and camping areas. Hotels, cabins and golf courses make the area a true outdoor lover's playground.
The Old Chain of Rocks Bridge
Built in 1927, Old Chain of Rocks was the fifth bridge to cross the Mississippi River, which shortened the distance between St. Louis, Missouri, and Edwardsville, Illinois by 15 miles.
Henry's Ra66it Ranch
This quirky must-see Route 66 attraction, information center and souvenir gift shop is home to rabbits of all kinds, bunny and VW, as well as Mother Road memorabilia.
Bob's Civil War Fort
Tucked away in the rolling hills of Germantown is a Civil War Fort. There is a jail, civil war cannons, a stage coach, a livery, log cabins, and much more.
Pink Elephant Antique Mall
The Pink Elephant Antique Mall has many hidden gems. Open daily 9:30 am - 5:30 pm.
Weezy’s Route 66 Bar and Grill
The restaurant is known for charbroiled burgers, homemade pies and hearty breakfasts, particularly biscuits and gravy made with fresh sausage from locally produced hogs. The decor follows a diner theme with a black-and-white checkered floor and red vinyl seat cushions on chrome booths, tables and chairs. Walls are lined with vintage signs, photos of old vehicles and other Route 66 memorabilia and even has an outdoor patio.
Hidden Lake Winery & Banquet Center
Welcome! Hidden Lake Winery and Banquet Center, located in rural Aviston, IL, is situated in “Silent Forest,” a wooded parcel of land abounding in local lore. Our winemaking began in 2004 and is influenced by the German heritage of the farming families who settled this part of Illinois. At Hidden Lake Winery, our goal is to offer a variety of wines that will satisfy many different palates. Our wines are produced with locally-grown fruit and bottled here in our cellar. Guests can enjoy a glass of wine (or other beverage if desired) in a tranquil setting with old friends, or perhaps with new ones.
J-H Bison Ranch
Tours of this family-run bison ranch include baby bison feeding, herd tours, and photos with baby bison, llamas and horses.
Louis Latzer Homestead
Louis Latzer, the founder of the Pet Milk Company, built this homestead for his wife and family in 1901. The home had many modern features of the day, including running water pumped by hand to a holding tank in the attic, a manufactured gas light system, speaking tubes between many of the rooms and one of the first telephones in the community.
The Ariston Cafe was founded by Pete Adam, a Greek immigrant, in Carlinville, Illinois in 1924. The original cafe was located on Route 4, the predecessor of Historic Route 66. In 1929, the Cafe was relocated to Litchfield, Illinois and moved into its present location on Route 66 in 1935. Since 1966, Pete’s son Nick and wife, Deme, continue to offer the traditional service expected of a family-owned and operated restaurant. The cafe is believed to be one of the oldest restaurants on Route 66 and has been inducted into the Route 66 Hall of Fame and is placed on the National Registry of Historic Places.
Livingston Muffler Man
The Livingston-Staunton Muffler Man, in his spiffy orange "Harley-Davidson" shirt, is located outside the Pink Elephant antique mall. He's clearly visible from I-55 now, but looks so tiny in the middle of a field with nothing for reference. You can see him and many other "Muffler Men" along the historic route.
Litchfield Museum and Route 66 Welcome Center
Designed to reflect the Route 66 era, the museum houses exhibits which focus on the roles the railroads, Route 66, businesses, agriculture, and the military have played in Litchfield's history.
The Cabins & Cottages at Shale Lake
There are four different cabins in various sizes to choose from and each one comes with a beautiful view of the lake. All the cabins have a screened in porch, a/c, full kitchen, 3/4 baths and an open floor plan.
Shoal Creek Nature Preserve
This 260-acre site offers nature trails for visitors to explore wetlands, prairie openings, and sandstone bluffs and ledges. The preserve is home to more than 700 plants and 70 bird species, including bald eagles during the winter months.
Soulsby’s Service Station in Mount Olive
The Soulsby Service Station is a historic service station in Mount Olive, Illinois. The station is located along historic U.S. Route 66 and is the oldest usable service station on the highway in Illinois. It serves as an example of the house and canopy gas station design.
Southern Illinois University Edwardsville Ralph Korte Stadium & Sports Complex
This 3,000-seat venue is home of the SIUE track & field and soccer programs. The complex, which has hosted the NCAA Division II Championships on three occasions, is completely lighted and has a seperate throwing area for field events.
Southern Illinois University Edwardsville Cougar Field and SimmonsCooper Baseball Complex
These newly constructed additions to the sports facilities at SIUE serve as the home of the softball and baseball teams, respectively.
Southern Illinois University Edwardsville Vadalabene Center
The Vadalabene Center on the Division I campus at SIUE is a flexible venue with seating for 4,000. The main gym can be configured for several different court setups: three full-sized basketball, six volleyball or five badminton. The center is also home to the SIUE wrestling program.
Carlyle Dam East Spillway Campground
Swimming, fishing, boating.
Indian Grove Campground
Overnight tent camping, overnight pull through spots and permanent camper sites. Call ahead -- space limited for overnight trailer sites.
A Buck or More
A Buck or More offers flowers, gift baskets, parcels, party favors, supplies, and services.
Just outside of Edwardsville, Bilbrey Farms is home to exotic animals and trained birds. Come feed the animals or stay at the bed and breakfast.
The Thrift Shop
Opened in 1990 to help raise money for the local hospital and nursing home, The Thrift Shop is filled with bargains, hard-to-find items, and new and used merchandise.
Villa Marie Winery & Banquet Center
Villa Marie Winery began operation in 2006. The result – over thirty different award-winning (state and international) wines. Nestled in the rolling hills of Southern Illinois, Villa Marie Winery and Banquet Center, a 20,000 square foot venue, is the site of weddings, parties, family and corporate events, and a relaxed atmosphere for spontaneous gatherings, planned meetings, or an opportunity to taste outstanding wines. Come for lunch, order delicious appetizers, or enjoy assorted cheeses and crackers while sipping wine and appreciating the peaceful surroundings. Villa Marie Winery and Banquet Center hosts events throughout the year. Come for: "Wine All You Want Wednesday" (ladies’ night), days to honor military personnel, original music showcases, special events on calendar holidays, customer appreciation, or for a quiet place to drink excellent wine, watch the swans and ducks, and enjoy the company of good friends. Check our website for dates and times of events: