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Learn about local Underground Railroad sites on a shuttle tour with J.E. Robinson Tours and the Alton Regional CVB. These two-hour guided shuttle tours will stop at some of the sites that were part of the Underground Railroad system including the Old Rock House, Rocky Fork Church and more. Alton’s riverfront location along the Mighty Mississippi played a vital role in helping slaves make connections to the freedom of the northern states. Buried beneath the streets of Alton and Godfrey, remnants of this period in history still exist. For more information on the Underground Railroad shuttle tours or to make advance registrations, please contact the Alton Regional Convention & Visitors Bureau at (800) 258-6645.
The 7,500-square-foot “Model Railroad Garden: Landmarks of America” exhibition at the Chicago Botanic Garden features trains running on 1,600 feet of track, for train and garden enthusiasts to enjoy the delightful sights and sounds of the miniature trains traversing high and low through tunnels, across bridges and around buildings.
The Chicago Flower & Garden Show brings springtime to winter with its 20 lush gardens, beautiful and fragrant flowers, trees and other plants allowing “newbie” gardeners and experts alike to experience the latest the industry has to offer. Top garden builders create fresh designs, while nationally-known presenters teach visitors how to get that professional garden look. It's all happening at the Chicago Flower & Garden Show. Be among the first to see new plant varieties for 2017 and experience the newly-redesigned Navy Pier. Enjoy art, free kids activities, wine tastings, cooking demos from noted chefs, and a shopper's paradise of garden gadgets, jewelry, and more. Special rates available for groups.
Spend the weekend seeing horse powered equipment, antique tractors, and gas & steam engines. If that is not enough, watch demonstrations on bailing, blacksmithing, plowing, threshing, and more! Enjoy train rides, tractor pulls, great food, and a large flea market. There is something for everyone at this three day event.
Take a self-guided tour of public art from June 2 to September 2 as part of the 2nd annual Sculpture Walk in downtown Oak Park. The walk features 12 world-class sculptures prominently placed among Oak Park's many shops and restaurants.
Take a magical trip to a winter wonderland of twinkling lights and holiday beauty at the Chicago Botanic Garden when we kick off the holiday season! Outside, 750,000 lights sparkle and welcome you and your family to the Garden's wonderland. Inside the Regenstein Center, a 10,000-square-foot exhibition of miniature trains winds over bridges, under trestles, past waterfalls, and through more than 80 mini-replicas of Chicago's favorite landmarks. Paul Busse, designer of the Model Railroad Garden, created this amazing exhibition exclusively for the Garden's holiday celebration.
Annual Gem and Mineral Show showing off Indian artifacts, fossils, lapidary displays, shell crafts and much more.
Look for over 120 artists to be showcased at this year’s Cedarhurst Art & Craft Fair featuring glass, ceramics, jewelry, fiber, wood, basketry and leather, two-dimensional art and much more. An exciting area just for Children will include lots of games and make and take crafts for children to enjoy as well as their very own place to shop, the “Children’s Store.” Have a seat in the Grand Tent and enjoy entertainment by national and regional bands and tasty treats in the Cedarhurst Beer Garden! Local civic groups will be serving up delicious items at a variety of food booths throughout the weekend. There's plenty of seating in the Grand Tent plus the Beer Garden!
Annual Home Garden & Business Expo featuring over 40 exhibitors and 2 full days of "How To" demonstrations. Breakfast and lunch available, hourly door prizes, blood screenings on site and register for the "Grand Prize!"
Seeking a way to announce the emerging Arts District, galleries and building owners in partnership with the Oak Park Arts Council inaugurated Art on Harrison in 1995. Conceived of as an informal Friday evening gallery walk, the event has continued each September since its inception, expanding to include entertainment and performances at participating galleries. Come out and see what the area has to offer in a convivial atmosphere, a celebration of what the creative spirits of this community have accomplished.
This annual event features over 100 original, handmade arts and crafts, great food, free admission, and free parking. For more information call 1-800-851-4720, extension 8287.
The DuQuoin fair is one of the nation's best agricultural events. The fair offers plenty of entertainment, including a carnival, livestock shows, agricultural exhibits, contests, and national acts on the grandstand stage.
For model railroad aficionados and everyone else who ever enjoyed model trains, this is something to see. The Fever River Railroad is a 103 by 24 foot scale model of a hypothetical railroad. The railroad intersects with models of "real" railroads, each of which can be operated independently. Up to 20 trains can be operating at one time. Industries along the railroad right-of-way duplicate either actual facilities or are typically correct of the industries that would be found in the Upper Midwest. The scenery represents the geographical area as well. A collection of railroad memorabilia and pictures are on display.
The 26th Annual Southern Illinois Hunting and Fishing Days will be held at John A Logan College. It is the largest celebration of Hunting and Fishing Day in the country. This 200+ vendor show offers something for the whole family. Bass Fishing and Crappie seminars, catfish contest, Goose calling contests, Dock Dogs competitions, retriever demonstrations and a kids fishing hole are just a few of the activities throughout the weekend.
Olde England comes alive in Historic Downtown Antioch with lifelike figures representing scenes from the Dickens Era. The Dickens Holiday Village is back and the handcrafted Dickens characters made by our volunteer artists will bring a Public Art Program that is free for everyone to enjoy! Antioch will proudly displayed 45 Dickens characters for people to tour. Each character has a plaque describing the scene and also serves as an educational tool for students. Take a self-guided tour with one of our Dickens Walking Brochure Maps or reserve a tour guide for groups of 24 or more. Plus there is plenty of Dickens Fun for everyone in November and December. You may enjoy Dickens Teas, an Antioch "Oliver" dog afternoon, Dress like Dickens event, and much more.
Come see live eagle demonstrations 10 a.m. til 2 p.m. every Saturday in January at the Alton Visitor Center. See a live bald eagle up close and personal! Ask and learn about their species and habitats. Then, grab your official All Around Alton Eagle Watcher's Guide as you journey out along the Meeting of the Great Rivers National Scenic Byway to see eagles in their natural habitat. Free! For more information, call 1-800-ALTON-IL or go to www.VisitAlton.com.
The Sandwich Fair (DeKalb County Fair) is the oldest continuing fair in the State of Illinois. It brings over 175,000 visitors to the Sandwich Fairgrounds every year with harness races, draft horse pulls, carnival rides, demo derby, grandstand shows and the Midwest’s largest display of agricultural and home arts exhibits. It’s a traditional fair with the awesome fun of a modern theme park. The Sandwich Fair is quaint, old-fashioned fun – a great place to stay connected. There’s something for everyone! Join the fun! Fair starts the Wednesday after Labor Day and continues through Sunday. (Check out their web site for live entertainment lineup and ticket information.)
Buy a dress, pick out flowers, and find a photographer all in one place. Over 100+ vendors to choose from all under one roof. This annual event is presented by River Radio and held at The Pavilion of the City of Marion.
Explore the power of play at the Museum of Science and Industry, Chicago’s new temporary exhibition, Brick by Brick, opening March 10. Brick by Brick features a spectacular collection of more than a dozen LEGO®-built structures of engineering marvels, including a 60-foot-long Golden Gate Bridge, the International Space Station, St. Louis Gateway Arch, Hoover Dam, Roman Colosseum, the Burj Khalifa and more. These models are constructed by LEGO Certified Professional and Chicago native, Adam Reed Tucker. Guests will also experience hands-on building challenges that reinforce key principles of engineering, construction and architecture—and encourage creativity. Throughout the exhibit, guests learn how architects and engineers push the limits of design, materials and location to make the seemingly impossible, possible; witness how form follows function; and learn how building beautifully uplifts us all.
Shakespeare 400 Chicago is a yearlong international arts festival in 2016 celebrating the vibrancy, relevance and reach of Shakespeare. As the world commemorates the four hundred years since Shakespeare’s death in 1616, Shakespeare 400 Chicago will engage more than 500,000 Chicagoans and visitors to our City through 850 events.
At the Plane & Pilot Midwest LSA Expo, you'll find Light Sport Aircrafts lined on the tarmac of the Mt. Vernon Airport. Also find LSA's for sale, ancillary equipment and related services.
Celebrate Native American heritage with dancing, cultural demonstrations, children's games and crafts, special presentations and more. Special guest is Robert Mirabalo, a Pueblo musician and Native American flute player. Presented by Midwest SOARRING Foundation.
The annual quilt show is like a needle and thread as it joins together family members and friends to create something memorable. This event continues to grow and over 100 quilts and quilted pieces are entered in this judged show at the Colony School. Be sure to visit the Village Smithy and VagnHall Galleri to see additional quilts on display.