Oregon Trail Days set for July 19-20 at Lowden State Park

Staff Report

OREGON, Ill. — The Fifth Annual Oregon Trail Days Festival is set for Saturday and Sunday, July 19-20, at Lowden State Park, 1411 N. River Road, Oregon, Ill.

This two-day event will feature Native American music and cowboy entertainment plus Tipi camping, a Pioneer Gathering, a Mountain Man Encampment, One Woman Quilt Show, Art Show and Breakfast at Lorado Taft Field Campus.

Special features this year include a Sunday Brunch at the Lorado Taft Field Campus from 8 to 10:30 a.m. Cost will be $18 and will include entry into the festival as well as a full buffet lunch complete with Taft’s famous homemade cinnamon rolls. Children 6 and younger have discounted rates.

Additionally, on Sunday is the 5K Rugged River Run. Participants will run from the parking lot through the State Park along the Blackhawk River Path, up hills and stairs, and into the Lorado Taft Field Campus, where they will end at the Taft Breakfast. Cost of the run is $35, which includes entry fees, festival fees, breakfast and a T-shirt.

The Blackhawk Performance Group will have several American Indian dancers with authentic dances, beautiful handmade regalia, children’s dances, drum music and more.

The Cowboy arena will be a wonder to the eyes with a 150-foot Western Town, rough and tumble cowboys and cowgirls, faithful horses, whips, yodeling, cowboy songs, and a variety of Western demonstrators and encampments. The Pioneer area will be full of demonstrators in many trades, including blacksmithing, ammunition-making, root beer sales, bead work, flint knapping and much more. Bring the kids out to visit an authentic log cabin and to visit with real live “Mountain Men.”

The children’s area will be extra special this year with the addition of a hand-paddled train ride, face painting and performances by medicine man Dan Barth. Children can play games, do crafts, and learn how to shoot a real bow and arrow. Small fees for some activities.

Cost of the Oregon Trail Days Festival is $7 per person, children 6 and younger are free. Parking is included in the admission fee, and tractors and hay wagons will bring visitors from the parking lot to various locations within Lowden State Park. For more about Oregon Trail Days, visit www.oregontraildays.org. All registration information for vendors, merchants, artists and demonstrators, and the 5K Rugged River Run are available at this site, as well as information about camping in an authentic Native American Tipi. Questions can be submitted to info@oregontraildays.org or by calling (815) 238-8672.

From the July 16-22, 2014, issue

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