14th Rock River Canoe Rally
The 14th Rock River Canoe Rally will be Saturday, June 21. Sponsored by the Oregon Lions Club, this event is a leisurely paddle down one of the most scenic sections of river in Northern Illinois. Canoeing distances can vary with takeouts at Castle Rock State Park (about 4 miles), Grand Detour (about 8 miles), or Lowell Park north of Dixon (about 15 miles).
Hosted by the Oregon Lions Club, the entry fee of $12 for adults and $6 for children 12 and under includes an all-you-can-eat pancake/sausage breakfast served alongside the dam in Oregon. Also included are transportation for the vehicle driver from the chosen takeout site back to Oregon, and assistance in unloading and loading canoes
Started in 1987, the Canoe Rally has been an annual event with the exception of 1996 and 1997. During these years some thousands of canoeists have come to enjoy the scenic beauty of Oregon and the Rock River Valley; and, many come back year after year to participate in the canoe rally. Proceeds from the rally are given to Lions International Journey for Sight or to Lions of Illinois Camp Lions (a camp for children with sight or hearing impairment).
This section of the Rock River flows rather leisurely through a scenic countryside of native hardwood forests interspersed with pine plantations of Sinnissippi farms and the 2,250-acre Lowden-Miller State Forest. Canoes also glide by St. Peter sandstone bluffs, left exposed after the passing of the glaciers. The route passes by Castle Rock State Park, where canoeists can stop for a climb up the rock for a spectacular view of the Rock River valley, and by the Grand Detour John Deere Historic Site. There, canoeists can stop for a tour of the museum-historic site where the first successful steel plow was fabricated in 1837. Deer, wild turkeys, beavers, blue herons, turkey vultures, and bald eagles are often seen along the river.
For complete details and entry forms, contact the Oregon Chamber of Commerce, 124 ½ N. Fourth St., Oregon, IL 61061, or phone 732-2100.