We enjoy visiting Grafton, Illinois and vicinity. We had not been to Grafton since last fall, until yesterday afternoon.

We caught the ferry at Winfield, MO and crossed the Mississippi River. The drive through the Illinois countryside is always beautiful, even when the weather is overcast and storms predicted.

As we passed through Brussels, we noticed Odelehr's roadside market is open for the season. We'll return soon, to see and perhaps purchase beautiful quilts, homemade apple butter and other wonderful items offered by Mrs Odelehr.

Just a few miles beyond Brussels, we crossed the Illinois River, via Brussels Ferry. We drove through Grafton, where we noticed changes since our last visit. I spotted a jetty, I had not seen before, and pointed it out to J. We saw new boat slips. New condominiums are under construction, also. It appears the quaint little town of Grafton is growing.

We drove down The Great River Road toward Elsah. This is one of our favorite drives. The river comes right up to the road on one side of the hwy. On the other, the beautiful bluffs of the Palisades. We like to take this drive during Eagle Days. It's a beautiful drive anytime of year.

The photos above right, show the Elsah United Methodist Church and the lighthouse at Piasa Chautauqua Historic Site. In Elsah, you find cottages and bed and breakfasts. Principia College is just outside of town. Private summer cottages can be found at Piasa Chautauqua. When we see these places, it's as if time stands still.

We stopped at Grafton on our way to Pere Marquette State Park* and picked up Catfish dinners, to go. We took our "picnic" to the park and enjoyed the delicious meal, while sitting beside the Illinois River. So beautiful and peaceful.
Winfield (MO) Lock and Dam #25, Mississippi
River, from Winfield Ferry and a view of the
Illinois River, from Brussels Ferry 4/24/2007
After supper, we visited Pere Marquette Lodge. We've stayed here many times. It's a wonderful place for couples and families. A special place for us, with special memories.

Pere Marquette State Park: