Streator, Illinois is a Hidden Gem on the Prairie

Activities, Site InSpections

With over 30 pieces of public art, musical acts performing regularly, outdoor adventure and a friendly atmosphere, Streator has it all

Just a short ride from Starved Rock State Park resides the charming community of Streator, Illinois. Conveniently located in the middle of I-39, I-80 and I-55, this quiet surprise on the prairie is filled with worldly and out-of-this-world history. There are also a myriad of outdoor adventures for groups to uncover along with unique celebrations.

Outdoor Adventure Abound in Streator

Streator is a perfect place to enjoy an outdoor adventure as it is located just 25 minutes from Starved Rock State Park, one of the most popular destinations in Illinois. Starved Rock features 13 miles of trails to explore while the Illinois River offers fishing, boating, extraordinary views and great places to relax.

Public art displays

The Streator area is home to an impressive array of parks, public art and open spaces. One historic figure has a trail named after him, The Hop-a-long Cassidy Greenway Trail. In fact, it is actually a set of trails alongside the beautiful Vermilion River, one of the few rivers to run north. There’s also a canoe and boat launch for even more outdoor adventure. The original trail is about 0.5 miles while the latest portion of the trail starts at Twister Hill Park and continues 1.4 miles to its end. Twister Hill Park features playground equipment, exercise equipment and bathroom facilities.

Parks and nature areas

Another outdoor odyssey is Spring Lake Nature Area. Filled with flora and fauna, this land is abundant with wildlife, is a popular hiking and picnicking location and hosts the area’s only public equestrian trail. Visitors can also spend the day on the Vermilion River with Canoe the Vermilion. The company provides canoe equipment, instruction and transportation, allowing guests to enjoy the pristine water.

Golf course and Spring Lake

From left to right: The Eastwood golf course, The Eastwood, Spring Lake Nature Area

Tee time in Streator

Streator’s two beautiful golf courses, Anderson Fields and The Eastwood, will entice any golfer. Anderson Fields is a nine-hole public golf course that has been operational since 1925. The Eastwood is a public nine-hold course that borders the Vermilion River and is surrounded by mature oak trees. With five water features, the course is challenging and fun for all.

Marilla Park is also home to one of the state’s top disc golf courses! Established in 2012, this 18-hole course offers a balance of challenges for the novice and experienced golfer. Woody terrain, hillsides and doglegs provide the perfect setting for a competition or just a friendly game.

Enjoy the show

An unexpected surprise that will enlighten your cultural side is Engle Lane Theater. Established in 1960, this comfortable, well equipped theater, which seats 247, hosts 6 plays annually. Quality live theater, this theatrical troupe performs in a variety of genres including comedies, dramas and musicals. An all volunteer organization, hundreds of individuals have contributed to Engle Lane’s success over the years; from designers of sets, costumes, make up & lighting to behind the scenes crews to board members, staff and performers. The Streator community has been faithful in attendance and financial support.

Fun-Filled Streator Attractions

Streator has numerous attractions to keep visitors entertained including the Weber House and Garden which offers tours of the storybook Tudor Cottage and the surrounding English Garden. The tour begins in an almost hidden red gate shrouded in greenery. Inside, a gravel patch roams through the grounds past the children’s playhouse, ponds, fountains, statues and hundreds of shrubs and flowers.

Gardens and Library Streator IL

From left to right: Weber House English Gardens, Andrew Carnegie Library, Weber House and Garden

Tap into Streator history

History buffs will enjoy the many artifacts held at the Streatorland Historical Society Museum. The museum opened in 1986 and houses memorabilia from some of its most famous citizens. They include Edward Plumb, musical director for Walt Disney’s Fantasia and Bambi, and Clarence Mulford, author of Hopalong Cassidy, a famous fictional cowboy hero.

Streator is also home to the Streator Public Library, which is an Andrew Carnegie Library that opened in 1903. In fact, it’s listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

Another must-see are seventeen historic murals painted by the infamous Walldogs, which are located throughout downtown Streator. In addition to self-guided tours, Streator tourism offers Walldog mural tours and the historical society offers history tours.

Walldogs Murals in Streator, Illinois

Walldogs from left to right: Hopalong Cassidy/Clarence Mulford by Andy Goretski, Streators Founding Fathers by Anat Ronen, Pluto/Clyde Tombaugh by Jeff Lang

Interestingly, 260 international artists descended on Streator in 2018 to celebrate the towns Sesqusi-Centennial to paint some of the town’s most notable history and figures. Learn about each adventure as you pass many unique shops and delectable delights.

A Great Place to Celebrate

Events and entertainment can be found throughout the year, and are a fun addition to an outdoor adventure. Three of Streator’s largest events are the Food Truck Festival in May and September, the Fourth of July Celebration and the Roamer Car and Cruise in September. 

Streator, IL Food truck and car show

From left to right: Roamer Car and Cruise, Food Truck Festival, Roamer Car and Cruise in Streator, Illinois

The annual Streator 4th of July Celebration takes place every July. As the largest in the state, the celebration  features fireworks, a parade, carnival, national music acts, food and a beer garden, a Run for Glory 5K, Emergency Vehicle Show and much more. Don’t miss the largest fireworks show in Central Illinois. Grab your flag, show your patriotism and enjoy the entertainment.

Fourth of July Streator IL

Concert and carnival fun at the Fourth of July Celebration in Streator, Illinois

Previous event headliners include double-platinum rock artist Firehouse; C.M.A., A.C.M. and Grammy award-winning country artist Eddie Montgomery of Montgomery Gentry; iconic 90s alt-rock band, Everclear; Georgia’s renegade redneck rap duo The LACS; and chart-topping country group Confederate Railroad. Support artists include Jack Russell’s Great White, Fastball, The Nixons, Jordan Fletcher, NATU Band, and local favorite 80’s BUSH.

You can find other hidden gem group destinations when you subscribe to the current issue of Leisure Group Travel today.



Streator Tourism

Curt Bedei


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