The last leg of my journey lands me at the Swedish utopian community of Bishop Hill, now maintained by the state of Illinois as a historic site. Tent accommodation is at the nearby Johnson-Sauk Trail state park. Camping sites with electricity are now $20, tent sites are still $8. And get this, on the weekend (Friday, Saturday, Sunday night) it goes up to $30 a night, $35 for holidays, for a regular camping site. On labor day this includes Monday. In other words, if you want to go camping on the weekend, either forget Illinois or check yourself into a hotel.
At least the Olof Krans museum is still there. I dropped in to visit my favorite paintings (no photographs except by permit) then moved on to Swedish meatballs at the Red Oak. I was once lucky enough to catch a special meal here with a harpsichord folk group performance. PJ’s is pretty good too,especially for pie, and for breakfast on the weekend, the old filling station north of the central park with the gazebo used to have a full breakfast with lingonberries for the pancakes.