I haven’t been to Starved Rock for the holidays for two years. I’m there now, sitting by the fireplace in the Great Hall, writing. There are children running around, and there’s enough snow outside that we’re in a winter storm warning. A promising start to Christmas.
Starved Rock is a state park in LaSalle County, IL, near where I grew up. Full of sandstone bluffs and trees, it is one of the best places to see fall color in the US and is picturesque in the winter. It can get horrendously busy at Memorial Day and Fourth of July, so I would not recommend going at those times. Come in the fall or winter, although if you want to stay at the lodge, reserve early.
Nearby Utica is a cute, tiny tourist town worth visiting and Ottawa is a college town without a college. We’re close enough to Chicago to get their tourists, which builds the local economy, but far enough away that the area is still uncrowded.
Today I don’t think we’ll go out in the snow. I may write here; I will sit by the Great Hall fireplace and possibly build a fire at our cabin. There’s a hot tub I might go in later, and maybe I’ll take a nap. I may be in the best place in the world for a snow day.