COLLINSVILLE — The Cahokia Mounds State Historic Site will welcome the equinox and the arrival of spring with a special dawn event Sunday, March 20, at the Woodhenge solar calendar.
Visitors can gather at 6:45 a.m. to see dawn break over the reconstruction of a calendar used when Cahokia Mounds was home to thousands of Native Americans. The huge circle of posts stands about one mile west of the site’s Interpretive Center on Collinsville Road.
An archaeologist will explain the discovery, form and function of Woodhenge while awaiting the sunrise. No rituals or ceremonies will be performed out of respect for American Indian beliefs and culture.
One definition for the start of spring is the vernal equinox, when the day is equally divided between hours of light and darkness. It arrives on March 20 this year.
Cahokia Mounds State Historic Site is eight miles from downtown St. Louis in Collinsville, off Interstates 55-70 (Exit 6) and Interstate 255 (Exit 24), on Collinsville Road.
The Interpretive Center is open 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Wednesday through Sunday. There is no admission fee but suggested donations are $7 for adults, $5 for seniors, $2 for students and $15 for families.
For information, call (618) 346-5160 or visit cahokiamounds.org.
The site is operated by the Illinois Historic Preservation Agency.