EDITOR’S NOTE: This is a monthly column provided by the Alton Regional Convention and Visitors Bureau that discusses tourism events on the horizon.
It’s amazing how much we at the CVB anticipate the start of our busy summer season, and then time catches up with our excitement and delivers in a big way. With Memorial Day under our belts, this weekend has plenty of summertime fun to usher in June.
Here’s just a sampling of ways you can start summer off on the right foot. The largest festival in our region is the Two Rivers Family Fishing Fair on Saturday at Pere Marquette State Park. The region’s gardens are also in full bloom for Sunday’s Home and Garden Tour, sponsored by Pride Inc. History will come to life this weekend at the Otterville Hamilton Primary School Festival for a one-of-a-kind event. Or you might consider checking out the Dock Hop at the Grafton Harbor on Saturday or the All-Wheels Drive-In Car Show in Downtown Alton. This weekend kicks off the summer season of fun with the Muny Band concerts, the Carillon Concerts at Gordon Moore Park and the Alton Farmer’s and Artisans Market. John Michael Montgomery brings the sounds of country music to the stage at the Liberty Bank Alton Amphitheater on Saturday. The free summer concerts sponsored by North Alton Godfrey Business Council at Alton High School and LCCC also kicked off last week, along with the Grafton Music in the Park. Plan all of your summertime fun at our comprehensive website at www.visitalton.com.
At the Alton Visitor Center, we have just completed our district maps for Downtown Alton and Grafton and we also have fully distributed 35,000 summer guides for summertime fun. We continue to develop new programs for the VisitAlton.com shuttles that will include garden tours, Underground Railroad tours, Historic Alton tours and even a new Bar-B-Que Trail tour. Check out all the possibilities aboard our shuttles this summer at www.VisitAlton.com/Shuttle. We also have a number of riverboat cruises to consider this summer aboard the Hakuna Mata or the Spirit of Peoria when in town. Check out their schedules at www.VisitAlton.com/Cruise. We will also be blessed with many arrivals of the American Queen Steamboats. While these will be pre-arranged tours with the American Queen Steamboat Company, you might consider a multi-day tour on these vessels and choose to leave right from Alton.
No matter what you choose for fun in the sun this summer, make all of your plans with us at the Alton Visitor Center. We can help guide you in the best direction at (618) 465-6676 or online at www.VisitAlton.com. Be a tourist in your own back yard this summer!
Stawar is president and CEO of the CVB, which works for the vested interests of hospitality partners in northwestern Madison County and all of Jersey and Calhoun counties.