Tuesday, April 1, 2014


Walk or run the 5 K course
in beautiful Bishop Hill 
at the 2014 
Bishop Hill Stomp & Scamperoo
on Saturday April 26th.
Download your application HERE
Good luck to all. See you there.

Sunday, March 16, 2014

Shake off winter's chill in Bishop Hill!

 Help us celebrate our new season at a
Spring Jubilee on Saturday, April 5.  

The public is invited to Bishop Hill's annual salute to spring. On this day, the Welcome Center will host several local gardeners from 10am-11am
where they will be happy to answer
all of your horticultural questions. 

See the special Swedish Art Exhibit at VagnHall.
At 1:30pm in the Steeple Building,

Barbara Gregorich will present a program titled
When Women Played Baseball.

This will be followed by a 3:30pm showing of
A League of Their Own
in the Steeple Building.  
Stop at the Colony Store to peruse
their new Spring and Easter items.
Visit the Open House at Sweet Annie Primitives from 10am-4pm
tour the 1855 Colony Apartment Building. 

We look forward to seeing you soon!

For more information for Bishop Hill events
309-927-3899 or 309-927-3345

Saturday, March 15, 2014

March Toy Tractor Show in Bishop Hill

Toy tractor collectors and enthusiasts 
will be out in force in Bishop Hill on  
 Saturday March 29 & Sunday March 30 
to see a variety of John Deere and International Harvester, toy tractors and farm implements.  Local collectors, such as Jerry Kuster and Richard Carlson, are displaying their treasures for  one weekend at the  
Steeple Building Museum  10am - 5pm
Over one hundred tractors and implements 
from various companies will be displayed 
along with a miniature farm landscape. 
Sponsored by the BH Heritage Association

Winter - The End Is Near

 The extreme weather we've had this winter 
is illustrated by these mammoth icicles 
on the new Bishop Hill Welcome Center.

And no matter how beautiful this effect is - 
I am looking forward to viewing sunsets 
through frost-free windows.
Lewis is tired of playing inside with the grand babies.
And with nothing to occupy them, my bored cats, 
Jimmy the Claw, and Jack the Ripper,
have taken up a new hobby: upholstery!
Maybe it's time that  I  take up upholstery.
The weather forecast looks promising.
 It won't be long until the 
village streets are filled with visitors again. 
I can't wait.

Monday, December 9, 2013

Lucia Nights - Festival of Lights in Bishop Hill - Friday, December 13 and Saturday, December 14

On Friday, December 13, the Lucia Nights celebration begins at 6 p.m. with the Lighting of the Park Christmas tree Then, the Peoria Cooperative Academy Chorale will be performing in VagnHall Galleri at 6 p.m., with the Kewanee Community Chorus following at 7 p.m.  In the Welcome Center, Vanessa League will be performing from 6 to 9 p.m.
On Saturday, December 14, the Peoria Cooperative Academy Chorale will again be performing in VagnHall Galleri at 6 p.m., followed by the Mountain Men at 7 p.m Barry Cloyd will be performing at the Welcome Center from 6 to 9 p.m.  Also, there will be an Old Fashioned Barn Dance at the Colony School beginning at 7 p.m. The Rusty Pickup Band will be performing.  All dances taught and called by Gail Hintze and Jim Hicks.  Admission is $5 per person, and beginners are welcome. No partner is necessary.

Both Friday and Saturday night, the Bishop Hill Community United Methodist Church will host the annual Soup and Chili Supper beginning at 4:30 p.m. until they run out. A free-will donation is appreciated to cover the cost of the meal.  On both nights, Hammer and Pick will be playing at the Steeple Building from 6 to 9 p.m.
Ghosts of Lucia's Day Past
St. Lucia's Day is celebrated in Sweden on December 13 during the darkest days of winter. Martyred St Lucia portrays the “bringer of light” at festivals throughout Europe – and Bishop Hill too! It is the tradition that a small girl dress as St. (Santa) Lucia during town celebrations. In Bishop Hill she serves shop visitors sweet treats and coffee. She is the key figure in this celebration that begins the Christmas season. Lucia dresses in a white gown and wears a crown of candles on her head symbolizing the promise of the sun's return to the cold and dark world.In Swedish homes on Lucia's Day, the youngest girl in the family dresses as St. Lucia and presents her parents with breakfast in bed. That breakfast usually includes a pot of tea, milk, and St. Lucia Buns or Lussekatter (Lucia Cats). The yeasted saffron buns get their names from the whimsical shapes they take while being made: figure-eight shaped "cats," "S" shapes, for saffron. 

Recipe for Swedish Lucia Buns 


2 packages active dry yeast
1/2 cup warm water (105 to 115 deg F)
2/3 cup lukewarm milk (scalded, then cooled)
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup margarine or butter, softened
2 eggs
1 tsp. ground cardamom
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. grated orange peel
5 to 5-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup raisins
Softened butter
1 egg, slightly beaten
1 Tbsp. water
2 Tbsp. sugar

Dissolve yeast in warm water in large bowl. Stir in milk, 1/2 cup sugar, 1/2 cup butter, 2 eggs, the cardamom, salt, orange peel and 3 cups of the flour. Beat until smooth. Stir in enough remaining flour to make dough easy to handle.
Turn dough onto lightly floured surface; knead until smooth and elastic, about 5 minutes. Place in greased bowl; turn greased side up. Cover; let rise in warm place until double 1-1/2 to 2 hours. The dough is ready if you poke your finger in to the first knuckle and the indentation remains.
If your raisins are not plump and soft, place them in a bowl and cover them with very hot water. Soak for about 10 minutes; drain them on a towel. This will prevent them from scorching in the oven.
Punch dough down; divide into 4 equal parts. Cut each part into 6 equal pieces. Shape each piece into a smooth rope, 10 to 12 inches long. Shape each rope into a "S"; curve both ends into a coil. Place a raisin in the center of each coil. Place on greased baking sheets. Brush tops lightly with softened butter; let rise until doubled, 35 to 45 minutes.
Heat oven to 350 degrees. Mix 1 egg and 1 Tbsp water; brush buns lightly with egg mixture. Sprinkle with sugar. Bake until golden brown, 15 to 20 minutes.

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

A Sweet & Simple Holiday Style in Bishop Hill

Christmas is coming to Bishop Hill. Area bakers are whipping up their best confections to tempt the taste buds of visitors attending the annual Chocolate Walk. This year, the public is invited to purchase chocolates in the recently renovated and newly opened Visitors Center, located next door to the Blacksmith Shop, on the east side of the Village Park. Chocolates and other baked goods will be available to buy by the pound on  Sat. Dec. 7 & Sun. Dec. 8 from 10 am to 5 pm. Proceeds from the Chocolate Walk support such Bishop Hill  activities as  Julmarknad, Lucia Nights, Midsommar, and other events. 

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Harvest Time in Bishop Hill means Pumpkins from Nature's Creations!

If you missed Ryan Werkheiser, grower and owner of Nature's Creations, at Bishop Hill's Jordbruksdagarna, there remains opportunities to purchase some of his specialty pumpkins at these events:

Spoon River Scenic Drive
October 12 and 13
Knoxville Fairgrounds, Knoxville Illinois

Galva Craft Show
October 19

Galva High School, Galva, Illinois

Ryan's fields are still yielding a dazzling array of gourds, squash, and pumpkins. I found him hard at work arranging a rack of just-washed carving pumpkins when I caught up to him yesterday.

Ryan maintains a large retail display on
the Werkheiser family farm and is
open to the public on these upcoming Wednesdays:
 10/9/13, 10/16/13, 10/23/23
10am to 6pm
Other hours are by appointment

Nature's Creations
21229 North 500th Avenue
Kewanee, IL 61443

PS: Though I spend a ton o' time and money on products guaranteed to erase the wrinkles and bumps that time has added to my aging skin, I always seem to select the most twisted, lumpy gourds I can find! When it comes to these ornaments, bumpy is beautiful. I am pleased to report that Ryan has grown the most delightfully wild, weird shapes and sizes I've ever seen.
You won't want to miss 'em!