What to do in Hazel and Bill Rutherford Wildlife Prairie State Park

*This information was provided by the Illinois Department of Natural Resources*

Discover the animals that called Illinois home during the pioneer days. This unique 2,000 acre zoological park is home to wolves, bison, waterfowl, black bear, elk, cougar, otter and much more.

You will enjoy the Park's spectacular natural settings, butterfly garden, wildflowers, lakes, wetlands, and restored prairie.

Imagine life in the early 1800's at the Pioneer Farmstead complete with farm animals, a one room school house and log cabin.

Explore the nature of Illinois while riding the train, enjoy the bronze statuary, have fun at our special events, and learn something about native Illinois.

When your day is over, you can even spend the night on the Prairie in one of our renovated Cabooses, Cabin on the Hill, Cottages by the Lake, or Prairie Stables.

All Facilities Include:Two days Park admission FREE parking Charcoal grills and picnic tables Televisions Linens Bathroom with showers Bank fishing Hiking Use of the Recreation Room located near the Prairie Stables

Cabin on the Hill-Single room log cabin with a beautiful overlook of our bison range. Queen size bed, two twin beds Relaxing front-porch swing Sleeps four people comfortably PLUS additional foldout beds for more Small refrigerator Coffee Maker and Microwave Playhouse for the kids Available year-round

Cottages by the Lake-A bird watcher's dream Located along a lake Kitchenette with electric burners Limited cookware and utensils provided Coffee Maker and Microwave Small refrigerator Air conditioned & heated Available year-round

Single Cottages-Futon bunk bed pulls out to a double bed on bottom, single on top Sleeps 3 comfortably

Double Cottage (suite-Futon bunk bed and single beds Sleeps eight comfortably

Train Cabooses-Located on the edge of the Bison and Elk range Sleeps 4 people comfortably PLUS additional foldout beds for more Single style bunk beds Small refrigerator Coffee Maker and Microwave Air conditioning Available April thru October

Prairie Stables-Appears to be a horse barn from the outside but has modern accommodations inside Located along a lake Semi-private patio with each room Family suite style accommodations (two bedroom) Coffee Maker Air conditioned and heated Available year-round

The Outback-Handicapped accessible hotel room Sleeps up to 3 people

Butterfly Garden-Seeing a butterfly gently land on a flower is one of the most spectacular sights nature provides. Butterflies are easily attracted to your garden when you follow a few simple practices.

The first thing is to provide lots of flowering plants that provide nectar for the adult butterfly. Good examples of these include Black-eyed Susans, Purple Coneflower, Butterfly Weed and Blazing Star just to name a few. Next provide food for the caterpillars, many like members of the carrot family such as dill. Provide them with water, rotting fruit, and a place to seek shelter and you will have provided the butterflies with a great habitat.

Savanna Garden

Prairie Species Garden

Pioneer Herb Garden

Pioneer Vegetable Garden

Also Native Illinois Wildlife

Recreation
Fishing-Anglers will have to enter and exit the park like all other visitors.

A general admission fee is charged at the main gate or yearly membership privileges applicable.

Legal fishing hours will end 1 hour before the park closes each day. Overnight visitors can catch fish throughout their stay, however, no boat fishing will be permitted from sunset to sunrise.

An Illinois fishing license is required for ages 16 and up. Resident and Nonresident fishing licenses are available on site.

Not every lake within Wildlife Prairie State Park is fishable, and not every lake contains fish. Lakes open to the public are Deep Lake, Caboose Lake, Beaver Lake, and both sections of Horseshoe Lake.

A designated parking area is to be used by anglers for their vehicles and is located under the utility lines on the southwest side of the bison pasture.

Fishing in these lakes will be from shore, belly boats, or portable boats. No boat ramps or road access will be available for trailer launching. Electric motors are prohibited.

Location
Wildlife Prairie State Park is located 10 miles west of downtown Peoria on I-74. Take exit 82, turn south and drive 3 miles.

Climate
Illinois experiences four distinct seasons with varying weather throughout the year. Winter can be very cold. The highest humidity of the year occurs during this season averaging 70 to 75 percent. Average low temperatures in January dip to 20 degrees F with highs near 35 degrees F. Spring temperatures are mild with humidity below 70 percent. Temperatures during this season average between 32 and 50 degrees F. Summer is usually hot and humid in this Midwest state. Low temperatures remain in the low sixties with high temperatures near 90 degrees F. The highest rainfall of the year occurs during the summer months. Fall is an excellent time to visit the state with low humidity and rainfall and moderate temperatures.

Address
3826 N. Taylor Rd.
Hanna City, IL 61536

Phone: 309-676-0998

Fax: 309-676-7783

Email: lindaprescott@wildlifeprairiestatepark.org
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  • Hazel and Bill Rutherford Wildlife Prairie State Park Travel Q&A

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