Thanksgiving in Illinois is a time for gathering with family and loved ones, expressing gratitude and, of course, eating. As part of TurkeyQuest -- a MapQuest guide to Thanksgiving events, featuring everything from parades to holiday sales to activities for families -- here are two of the best ways to experience Thanksgiving in Illinois and one opportunity to give back to others.
Illinois Thanksgiving Events Maps
Thanksgiving Feast At Pere Marquette Lodge & Conference Center
The Pere Marquette Lodge in Marquette State Park gives guests spectacular views of the Illinois River near the site where the first Europeans to arrive in the area landed. A Native American village once stood on the site of the park, which is named after Father Jacques Marquette, the famous French Jesuit missionary. A Thanksgiving dinner is held at the lodge each year. The cost is $24.95 for adults and $9.95 for children ages 4 to 11. Children 3 and younger eat for free. The meal includes turkey, which is doled out at carving stations, as well as salads and desserts.
Urbana Park District's Turkey Trot
One of Urbana's most popular family events is the Urbana Park District's Turkey Trot. The one-mile fun run and walk serves free hot chocolate during check-in, and the race starts at 9 a.m. The event benefits the park's scholarship fund, which provides money for children from low-income families to attend summer camp. Participants can make donations to the fund during the race, which will also raffle off prizes. Award ribbons will be given to the first 800 people who cross the finish line.
Volunteer: Thanksgiving Dinner At Home Sweet Home Ministries
Home Sweet Home Ministries provides assistance to Bloomington-area residents in need. The mission provides food and shelter services, and runs additional programs such as support groups for mothers. Volunteers are needed to help prepare and serve Thanksgiving dinner at the mission, as well as to deliver the holiday meal to homebound residents.
Thanksgiving In Illinois: Video
This video gives a tour of Pere Marquette Lodge and Park, where an annual Thanksgiving feast is held.
Did we miss an Illinois Thanksgiving event? Tell us about it in the comments section below.
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