After weeks of staying at home, many Illinois residents are dreaming of the day they can head outside to enjoy warming temperatures and rediscover the great outdoors.
Starting Friday, some Illinois state parks, recreation areas, and fish and wildlife areas have reopened under a modified stay-at-home order announced by Governor JB Pritzker.
According to the Illinois Department of Natural Resources, residents can visit reopened parks from sunrise to sunset and hike, boat, bike, ride horses, fish, collect mushrooms, or otherwise enjoy the outdoors. Hunting season is still suspended, and campgrounds, playgrounds and beaches will remain closed as well.
And while visiting their local parks, people will be required to follow social distancing guidelines like keeping six feet apart, only visiting alone or with their household, and otherwise avoiding crowds.
In addition to bug spray, the IDNR says people should bring alcohol-based hand sanitizer and face coverings, again following the governor’s modified stay-at-home order.
All other state parks and historic sites remain closed.
Here are the IDNR sites that will reopen May 1, sorted by region:
Argyle Lake State Park, Black Hawk State Historic Site, Franklin Creek State Natural Area, Hennepin Canal State Trail, Illini State Park, Johnson-Sauk Trail State Recreation Area, Jubilee College State Park, Lowden State Park, Mississippi Palisades State Park, Morrison-Rockwood State Park, Prophetstown State Park, Rock Cut State Park, Rock Island Trail State Park, Shabbona Lake State Recreation Area, White Pines Forest State Park.
Adeline Jay Geo-Karis Illinois Beach State Park and North Point Marina (currently closed due to flooding; will reopen when flood waters recede), Chain O’ Lakes State Park, Goose Lake Prairie State Natural Area, Illinois and Michigan Canal State Trail (includes Buffalo Rock, Channahon, Gebhard Woods, and William G Stratton), Kankakee River State Park, Moraine Hills State Park, Silver Springs State Fish and Wildlife Area, Volo Bog State Natural Area.
East Central Illinois
Clinton Lake State Recreation Area, Eagle Creek State Park, Fox Ridge State Park, Kickapoo State Park, Moraine View State Recreation Area, Walnut Point State Park, Weldon Springs State Park, Wolf Creek State Park.
West Central Illinois
Beaver Dam State Park, Eldon Hazlet State Recreation Area, Fort de Chartres State Historic Site, Lewis and Clark State Historic Site, Lincoln’s New Salem State Historic Site, Jim Edgar Panther Creek State Fish and Wildlife Area, Sangchris Lake State Park, Siloam Springs State Park, Washington County State Recreation Area.
Beall Woods State Park, Cache River State Natural Area, Cave-in-Rock State Park, Dixon Springs State Park, Ferne Clyffe State Park, Fort Massac State Park, Giant City State Park, Hamilton County State Fish & Wildlife Area, Horseshoe Lake-Alexander State Fish and Wildlife Area, Kinkaid Lake State Fish & Wildlife Area, Lake Murphysboro State Park, Ramsey Lake State Recreation Area, Red Hills State Park, Saline County State Fish and Wildlife Area, Sam Parr State Fish and Wildlife Area, Stephen A Forbes State Recreation Area, Tunnel Hill State Trail, Wayne Fitzgerrell State Recreation Area.