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Kids' Events and Calendar

Upcoming Programs at Dickson Mounds Museum
The following programs are being sponsored by Dickson Mounds Museum in Lewistown. Unless otherwise noted, the programs occur at Dickson Mounds Museum, too. For more information, call 309-547-3721.
Tot Time
Adults and their tots will have fun exploring, discovering and learning on the first Thursday of the month in the Museum’s Discovery Center. Spend quality time with your tot, while each of you makes new friends. A different topic and craft will be featured each month. On May 3, 2018, the program will be “Tiny Creatures in the Water.” Representatives from the Therkildsen Fieldstation at Emiquon will teach about and show microscopic creatures that live in the water at Thompson Lake. Registration is not required and admission is free. Participants will enjoy light refreshments. The program begins promptly at 9:30 a.m. with the program portion lasting approximately thirty minutes followed by crafts, snacks and time to explore the Museum. This program series is sponsored by the City of Lewistown, Canton Chamber of Commerce, Havana National Bank, Lewistown VFW Auxiliary Post 5001, Rusty Melhouse of Edward Jones and Chris Bennett of Dunfermline.
Family Day: Let’s Fly a Kite with Old Time Music by the Bug Trotters
Saturday, May 19, 2018, 1:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.
Join us for an afternoon of flying kites. Visitors of all ages may enjoy learning how to fly pole kites, wind resistance exploration, trying out “wings,” fun with bubbles and making their own kite craft to take home. The program will be presented by Heather McMeekan, M.S. and founder of the annual Macomb Kite Festival. She has been an avid kite enthusiast for more than 25 years and promotes kite-flying as a recreational, motivational and therapeutic activity suitable for all ages and ability levels. Enjoy live music performed by the Bug Trotters, a group of friends who get together to play Old-Time Square Dance music. Together, they represent more than a half-dozen central Illinois bands, but for Illinois State Museum events they perform under the Bug Trotters name. They will be providing lively tunes played on fiddle, banjo, guitar, mandolin and harmonica. This event will be held outdoors, but may be moved inside in the case of inclement weather. Participants should dress appropriately for this outdoor activity and bring their own sunscreen, hat, blankets or lawn chairs and water, if needed.  Dickson Mounds is hosting the event with help from the City of Lewistown, the Emiquon Partnership, and the University of Illinois Extension Master Naturalists. Admission is free, but donations are appreciated.
Hickory Ridge Concert Series
For more than 20 years, people have gathered at Dickson Mounds on the third Saturday of every month for an evening of musical entertainment. Hosted by Chris Vallillo, an accomplished musician and performer in his own right, the series features roots/folk music and other genres offered by a talented variety of performers. Phil Heywood plays finger-style guitar with a bluesy swing and a bucketful of whatever it takes to turn an instrumental piece into an arresting lyrical narrative. His lucid playing encompasses the down-home rhythmic groove of a Mississippi John Hurt or Leadbelly, and the sheer fluidity and melodic flair of such contemporaries as Leo Kottke.  A soul-satisfying instrumentalist, Phil draws listeners in with his voice as well, singing in a warm, plainspoken baritone that blends smoothly with his rock-solid guitar work. Heywood has been based in Minneapolis-St. Paul since the mid-eighties, performing locally and regionally while also establishing himself in the greater guitar and acoustic music world. In 1986 he won the National Fingerpicking Championship, and followed up a year later by winning the American Fingerstyle Guitar Festival Competition. Phil has played on NPR’s A Prairie Home Companion with guitar legend Chet Atkins, performed with fellow acoustic guitar luminaries Peter Lang, Pat Donohue, Tim Sparks, and Dakota Dave Hull, and opened shows for such artists as Norman Blake, Greg Brown, John Renbourn, Chris Smither, and John Hammond. Doors open at 6:00 p.m. Concert begins at 7:00 p.m. $8 adults, $5 kids. Visit this Web site for information about the artist.
Kid’s Day: Fun with Fungus
Saturday, May 12, 2018, 1:00 p.m. – 3:00 p.m.
Enjoy learning about fungi's role in our lives and ecosystem. A variety of native fungi will be on display to highlight their specific traits. Hands-on activities and crafts to take home will be available. Admission is free, but donations are appreciated. Age: kids 5 years old + with an adult
May Programs at Beall Woods State Park
The following programs are scheduled during May at Beall Woods State Park near Mt. Carmel. For more information, call 618-298-2441.
Kids to Park Day "Tricky Tracks"
Saturday, May 19, 2018, 9:00 a.m. – 11:00 a.m.
Some animal tracks are easy to identify while others may be a little tricky. Practice your track identification by participating in Track Bingo, Creating Plaster Tracks, Track Rubbings and go on a Tricky Track hike. Please register by May 12, 2018.
Bird Friendly Backyard
Saturday, May 26, 2018, 10:00 a.m.
Learn how to create a bird haven around your house and attract as many species as possible for backyard bird watching. Discover which types of trees, shrubs, native wildflowers and annuals you can plant for shelter, nesting and food sources. Take home landscaping tips on other features birds need for a suitable habitat.
Wild Illinois History Leads Students on a Journey to Learn About History and Wildlife Conservation
The IDNR is offering a "virtual" trip for late-elementary schoolteachers, students and their parents. With a few mouse clicks, students can journey back to the earliest days of the Illinois Territory when voyageurs and Native Americans hunted the prairies, forests and rivers. Wild Illinois History helps students in grades three through five focus on early French exploration, along with river and settlement geography. Students can learn how wildlife helped Native Americans and early settlers survive. They also can see how wildlife is a part of our lives today. A fictional French trapper in the 18th century Illinois Territory leads students on the trip. Brief story-telling slideshows are mixed with fun, interactive activities. For teachers, Wild Illinois History offers lesson plans, activities, photos, posters and correlations to Illinois Learning Standards. Try it out at