Water Trail

Register Online For October 8, 2016

Join the Lincoln Heritage Water Trail Association for an exploration of the Secrets of the Sangamon -- Legends of Lincoln’s river and tales beyond the Prairie.

Paddlers will enjoy a short leisurely float down the Sangamon River to Lincoln’s New Salem State Historic Site where the fall colors, quiet vistas, and shadows of past signal the changing seasons.  

Joining you along your journey on Lincoln’s river will be staff from the Illinois State Museum and Dickson Mounds State Museum who will provide unique perspectives on the history of the river and where evidence of creatures and cultures may yet remain hidden not so far below the river’s reach.   And, in Illinois’ prairie pioneering years, there was perhaps no greater mystery than that of the Legend of the Piasa, the Storm Bird, that is said to lurk both below water edge and above in the dark expanses of starless skies.

Once off the water, you will be greeted by a bonfire, wiener-roast, and traditional tastes of autumn.  Here, among the swirling smoke and rustling leaves, campfire stories of will spin local legends and lore back to life.  

** This year another Son of the Sangamon and one of Springfield’s most talented singer/songwriters, Ben Bedford, will join us beside the fire with songs that are rooted to this place and are as timeless as the trees we will gathered under.  For more about Ben go to www.benbedford.com .

As dusk approaches you may leave the riverside area and head to the New Salem Visitor’s Center where the Candlelight Tour begins at 7:00pm and continues to 9:00pm.   

The Tour offers the only opportunity to see the village at night. Staff and volunteers in period clothing will be inside many of the log homes and shops in the village to talk about life in 19th century Illinois.   Gingerbread and cider will be served in the Rutledge Tavern. 

The Candlelight tour is also offered Friday the 7nd and Sunday, October 9th. 

Canoes & Candlelight - Oct. 8, 2016

Link to Water Levels in Petersburg

NOAA, National Weather Service Link

Local record artist Ben Bedford to join Canoes & Candlelight 2016!

In The News

The Next Abe's River Race will be held on Saturday of Memorial Day weekend (May 27, 2017)

Details will be release around January, 2017!

Special Thanks

Associations and Government:  Menard County Trails & Greenways Association, Menard County Tourism Council, Menard County Jaycees, Petersburg Rotary Club, Looking for Lincoln Heritage Coalition, Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library & Museum, Lincoln's New Salem Historic Site (IL Historic Preservation Agency), Illinois Department of Natural Resources, Girl Scouts of Central Illinois, Menard County Sheriff's Office, Menard County EMS, Menard County Rescue Squad, City of Petersburg and others.

Local Businesses in Petersburg & Surrounding AreaRiverbank Lodge, New Salem Canoe, Treetop Productions,Inc., Hill Prairie Winery, Ray's Escape, Hand of Fate Brewery, Rolling Meadows Brewery and others to be named soon.