Whether you’re strolling through our historic downtown, getting lost in a corn maze, or muskie fishing at Lake Carlton, you’ll soon realize the unique charm and character that is Morrison. While it is difficult to limit our list, below are ten reasons to make Morrison your next destination in Northwest Illinois.
1. Morrison-Rockwood State Park— This picturesque state park featuring beautiful Lake Carlton, a stream-fed reservoir, offers a variety of recreational opportunities such as picnicking, camping, fishing, boating, trails, and an abundance of wildlife, 18750 Lake Road.
2. Unique Architecture— The city contains many structures and areas, such as our historic downtown, that embody a sense of time and place unique to our community. Visit the Morrison Chamber of Commerce at 221 W. Main or The Heritage Museum at 202 E. Lincoln Highway for more information.
3. Golf— Cross Creek Golf Course, located just a few miles west of Morrison on Henry Rd. and Prairie Ridge Golf Course (formerly the Morrison Country Club), located at 903 W. Morris St. are both open to the public and offer beautiful scenery and challenging fairways. For those non-traditionalists, there is the professionally designed 9-hole Frisbee Golf Course at Kelly Park, just off East High Street.
4. Covered Bridge— Step back in time when you visit Whiteside County’s very own covered bridge. Located north of Highway 30 off of Orange St., the bridge is on the way to Morrison-Rockwood State Park. Only its size gives it away that the bridge is, in fact, new construction. At 148 feet, the two-span covered bridge is much larger than those you will find elsewhere.
5. Whiteside County Fair—The 143rd Annual Event opens the morning of Tuesday, August 13 and runs through the Saturday, August 17 grand finale. The fair includes a carnival, a petting zoo, and grandstand events, including a tractor pull, a country music show, and the ever-popular demolition derby.
6. Blue Goose Corn Maze— Come out and lose someone in our Illinois Corn Maze located at 14609 Blue Goose Rd., open August through October each year, (815) 772-7200.
7. Harvest Hammer—Paint the Town—The third weekend in September, Morrison comes alive with great community events starting at 8:00 a.m. on Saturday with the Harvest Hammer; which includes a Duathlon for men and women, a Children’s Fun Run for children 5th grade and under, a 1-mile challenge run for 5th thru 8th grade, and a 5k run/walk for all. At noon, the downtown is transformed into an outdoor canvas for hundreds of amateur artists of all ages who gather to Paint the Town, enjoy great food, and listen to various genres of music, in this unique family art event. On Sunday, Main Street is again closed to allow people to stroll through downtown and view the art work. Contact City Hall at (815) 772-7657 for more information.
8. Annan Grist Mill and Malvern Roller Mill— For some great photo opportunities visit either of these historic grist mills; both located on Rock Creek. Built in 1858, the Annan Grist Mill is a 2 1/2 story structure made completely out of stone, located on Lincoln Highway on the west edge of Morrison. The Malvern Roller Mill, also known as Appel Mill, is a 19th century grist mill located near the unincorporated village of Malvern, IL, on Felton and Clover roads. To the west of the mill building is a circa 1890 Pratt truss bridge. The Malvern Roller Mill was added to the U.S. National Register of Historic Places in 1995. Both mills are privately owned and not open to the public.
9. The Bike Barn— Located at 13524 Black Road, the Bike Barn is home to off-road racing events for M/C’s, ATV’s, 4×4 Trucks, and Demolition Derby’s such as “Firecracker Weekend” over the 4th of July, featuring Bogs, Drags, MotoX and a fireworks display. In October, the nationally known “Moose Run,” Round 10 of the OMA National Off-Road Racing Series is held. For more information and other events call (815) 778-3641, omanationals.com, or peatmonster.com.
10. Christmas Walk— Each December, Morrison celebrates a “Hometown Christmas” with a lighted parade, window displays, church suppers, holiday entertainment, and Santa visits. Call the Morrison Chamber of Commerce for more information, (815) 772-3757.