It’s last week’s news, but in case you were too busy to keep up with the media — or, say, buried under a pile of leftovers — you should know that Kickapoo State Park will not be closing anytime soon. However, Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich did move forward with the unprecedented closing of seven state parks, including Weldon Springs State Park in nearby Clinton, and Wolf Creek State Park in Windsor, near Mattoon.
Originally, eleven parks were set to close by Nov. 30. Kickapoo (Oakwood, Ill.), along with Gebhard Woods State Park (Morris, Ill.), Channahon Parkway (Channahon, Ill.) and Hennepin Canal Parkway (Sheffield, Ill.), have been spared by Gov. Blagojevich. More than 300 people gathered at Kickapoo in late August, days after the governor’s plan to close state parks was announced, to protest the park’s closing.
Lawmakers had approved $230 million in new spending to save the eleven parks, but Gov. Blagojevich appropriated most of that spending for use with only four of those parks, leaving the other seven to close. For more on the governor’s reasoning, see this article in the State Journal-Register.