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National Illinois Day is celebrated every December 7. It celebrates the vibrant state of Illinois, its rich history, its contributions to American culture, and its natural and architectural beauty.

It’s a time when people reflect on what makes Illinois unique, from its bustling cities to its quiet, scenic parks.

The importance of National Illinois Day lies in its ability to bring people together, both from within and outside Illinois.

It’s a celebration that encourages everyone to explore the state’s landmarks, savor its diverse cuisine, and learn about its significant role in American history.

This day reminds us of Illinois’s pioneering spirit. It is home to innovations like the steel plow, which revolutionized farming on its prairies. It also honors Illinois as the backdrop for many historical and cultural milestones. In fact, it is the state where Abraham Lincoln and Frank Lloyd Wright were born​​​​​​.

There are many reasons for cherishing National Illinois Day. It underscores Illinois’s welcoming nature, showcasing the state as a great place to live and explore.

This day promotes unity and togetherness, highlighting the shared experiences and history that bind its residents. Whether it’s visiting historical sites, trying out famous Illinois dishes like Chicago-style hot dogs, or attending local festivals, there are countless ways to immerse oneself in the spirit of Illinois.

Ultimately, National Illinois Day is a time to celebrate the state’s achievements, its natural beauty, and its contributions to the nation’s cultural and historical fabric​​​​​​.

History National Illinois Day

National Illinois Day marks a special occasion to honor the state of Illinois, highlighting its cultural richness, history, and achievements. Celebrated every year on December 7, this day reflects Illinois’s journey from its early days to its current status as a vibrant state with a rich heritage​​.

National Illinois Day was established in 2017 by the National Day Calendar as a way to honor Illinois, the 21st state to join the Union. This initiative aimed to celebrate each state in the order in which they joined the Union, focusing on their unique culture and history​​​​.

Despite some confusion regarding the date, with some sources mentioning December 3rd based on historical context, the widely recognized celebration takes place on December 7.

This day serves as a reminder of Illinois’s significant contributions to the nation, whether it be through its influential residents, like past U.S. Presidents Ronald Reagan, Abraham Lincoln, Ulysses S. Grant, and Barack Obama, or through innovations like the steel plow by John Deere which transformed agriculture​​​​.

National Illinois Day encourages people to explore the state’s natural beauty and urban landscapes, appreciate its culinary delights, and participate in local festivals. It’s a day of unity, where residents and visitors alike come together to celebrate the achievements and spirit of Illinois​​.

How to Celebrate National Illinois Day

Dive into Deep-Dish Delights

Why not kick off the celebrations with a slice of deep-dish pizza? It’s actually a pie that demands a fork and knife packed with layers of cheese, sauce, and toppings.

Gather your friends for a pizza party, or better yet, try making your own at home. It’s messy, fun, and quintessentially Illinoisan.

Embark on an Architectural Adventure

Illinois boasts some awe-inspiring architecture, thanks to legends like Frank Lloyd Wright. Why not spend the day exploring?

You could drive by the iconic buildings in Chicago, or visit Wright’s home and studio in Oak Park for those who fancy a bit of travel. It’s like stepping into a living museum of architectural wonder.

Savor a Movie Marathon

Illinois has been the backdrop for many a blockbuster. From the streets of Chicago in “The Blues Brothers” to the quiet suburbs in “Home Alone,” these films capture the spirit of the state. Why not host a movie marathon featuring films set in Illinois? Pop some corn, dim the lights, and enjoy the show from the comfort of your couch.

Discover the Great Outdoors

For those who prefer nature over city life, Illinois doesn’t disappoint. Like the awe-inspiring Starved Rock, state parks offer trails, waterfalls, and stunning vistas.

Pack a picnic, lace up your hiking boots, and breathe in the fresh air. It’s a refreshing way to celebrate Illinois’s natural beauty.

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