Monday, December 5, 2016

Snow in Bishop Hill as we prepare for Lucia Nights

A beautiful fluffy snow fell all day today in Bishop Hill adding some unexpected holiday magic to our Christmas Market.  We look forward to next Friday and Saturday when we will celebrate our annual Lucia Nights. Luminaries will light up the streets, shops and museums will serve refreshements, and holiday music will be preformed throughout town. Please join us.
Lucia Nights Schedule
6pm - 9pm 
December 9 & 10
- The Bishop Hill Community United Methodist Church will be serving a Soup   and Chili Supper begining at 4:00pm and continuing until they run out. A free-     will donation is appreciated to cover the cost of the meal.
- Lighting of the Park Christmas tree at 6pm
- Jazz on the Side will be performing from 6 to 7:30pm at the Dairy Building
- Peoria Cooperative Academy Chorale will be performing from 7:30pm to 9pm at the Dairy Building
- The VASA National Archives will have a closing reception for their exhibits; Storyteller Brian “Fox” Ellis will share traditional Swedish and Pioneer Christmas stories at 6:30pm and 7:30pm
- Hammer and Pick will be playing a variety of music at the Steeple Building starting at 6pm
- Kewanee High School Chorus will be caroling throughout the village
- The Bishop Hill Community United Methodist Church will be serving a Soup and Chili Supper begining at 4:00pm and continuing until they run out. A free-will donation is appreciated to cover the cost of the meal.
- Jazz on the Side will be performing from 6pm to 7:30pm at the Dairy Building
- Peoria Cooperative Academy Chorale will be performing from 7:30pm to 9pm at the Dairy Building
- The VASA National Archives will have a closing reception for their exhibits; storyteller Brian “Fox” Ellis will share traditional Swedish and Pioneer Christmas stories at 6:30pm and 7:30pm
- Violinists Stephanie Cannon and Elizabeth Mattern will be playing Christmas carols from 6pm to 7pm in the Steeple Building
- Hammer and Pick will be playing a variety of music at the Steeple Building starting at 7pm
- ROWVA High School Chorus will be caroling throughout the village
- Old Fashioned Barn Dance at the Colony School will start at 7pm. The Rusty Pickup String 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
More photos of snowy Bishop Hill:


Wednesday, November 16, 2016

Christmas Market in Bishop Hill

Cows of Utopia - a November long ago
Google photos has a new feature: I get regular messages prompting me to revisit pics I've taken on the same date years ago. I'm reminded that the snow and ice will soon come and that the unseasonably warm temps will wane. But for now, I'm happy to report this year's Christmas Market weekends are predicted to remain (nearly) frost free!
Thanksgiving weekend in Bishop Hill 2004
Though a little snow makes a pretty scene, it is eaqually delightful to savor the the seasonal festivities without frozen toes!

Snow or not,
Bishop Hill’s Julmarknad (Christmas Market)
is fast approaching
November 25, 26 and December 3,10am to 5pm
November 27 and December 4, 11am to 5pm 

The attractions include Swedish folk characters, traditional Swedish holiday decorations, and Christmas gifts for sale. See Tomten (Swedish elves) roam through the town, shaking hands with tourists, looking through windows, and peeking around corners in their red and grey outfits. Stop in at the Steeple Building to see a working model railroad and woodcarving demonstrations.
There will be lots to see and do; some sheduled events include:
Friday, November 25 
Old World Santa Claus will visit with children at the VASA National Archives; cameras are welcomed.  While visiting with Santa, help the Vasa National Archives make a paper mache Dala Horse from 10am to 4pm Guests will be adding layers of paper mache to the Dala Horse. This is a community project that is open to children of all ages. A Cookie Walk will be held at the Colony School from 9am to 4pm  Homemade cookies and other baked goods can be purchased by the pound.  Finally, Sweet Annie Primitives will be having their Christmas Open House from 10am to 4pm Finally, Frau Blucker’s will be hosting Tim Pletkovich, author of Civil War Fathers, each and every day of Julmarknad. His book will be available to purchase and Mr. Pletkovich will be happy to autograph your copy.
Tomten ant the Julbock
Saturday, November 26 
The Cookie Walk will continue at the Colony School. The Paper Mache Dala Horse will be painted at the VASA National Archives from 10am to 4pm. Follow your nose to the 1860’s Bjorklund Hotel kitchen for cookie baking. Sample cookies from 1pm to 3pm.  Children ages 12 and under are invited to the Steeple building from 1pm to 3pm to make a Christmas ornament for their tree. Author Mary Davidsaver, will be signing her new book, Clouds Over Bishop Hill, from 1pm to 4pm at the Prairie Arts Center.
Sunday, November 27  

Mary Davidsaver will return to the Prairie Arts Center for readings and discussions of her book, a mystery novel set in Bishop Hill.
Saturday December 3 and Sunday December 4
On Saturday afternoon, younger children under 12 can visit the Steeple building from 1pm to 3pm to make and take home a Christmas ornament for their tree. Children are also invited to make edible tree ornaments at the Bjorklund Hotel from 1pm to 3pm. These ornaments may be taken home, or left at the Site to be placed on the Bishop Hill Park’s Christmas tree during the tree lighting on Lucia Nights.  A Chocolate Walk will be held at the Dairy Building. Purchase quality chocolates by the pound from 11am to 5pm each day.  The Prairie Arts Center will again host a book signing for Clouds Over Bishop Hill, written by Mary Davidsaver, from 1pm to 4pm

For more information call 309-927-3899 

Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Feathered Nest Open House September 25th

September 24th and 25th
Agriculture Days in Bishop Hill

The last full weekend of September is a time we set aside to celebrate the harvest. Honoring Bishop Hill’s agrarian roots and its courageous colonists, Jordbruksdagarna (earth works day) features music, food, crafts, activities, demonstrations, and an open air market filled with seasonal produce and primitive antiques. For many visitors it has become a family tradition.
The Nest is filled with seasonal treats
All are invited! 
Feathered Nest Open House
Because I live and work here in Bishop Hill, my Feathered Nest, located just three blocks west of the park, becomes a popular destination on such a busy weekend. I am trying something new this year: Rather than open my doors by appointment, I am having a Fall Open House on Sunday September 25th from noon to 4pm. The shop is packed with all sorts of fabulous eggs, dried arrangements and everlasting wreaths made of the best of autumn’s bounty.
The wreaths are hung to the rafters!
Book Launch
Clouds Over Bishop Hill
I am also pleased to host a book launch for my dear friend Mary Davidsaver. Her newly published novel, Clouds Over Bishop Hill, is a mystery set right here in Bishop Hill. Mary will be reading to visitors and signing books from 2pm to 4pm on Saturday at the Bishop Hill Museum and on Sunday she will here at the Feathered Nest from 2pm to 4pm.  Please plan to stop in for a very warm welcome!
Have your copy signed by the author

Thursday, September 1, 2016

Old Settlers' Parade In Bishop Hill

Every five years Bishop Hill celebrates its founding with a parade. This year marks the 170th anniversary of the Bishop Hill Colony and the 120th anniversary of The Bishop Hill Old Settlers' Association.

The 2016 BHOSA Parade 
will be held
Saturday, September 10 
10:00 am 

The annual Old Settlers' Day Celebration will begin at 10:00 with a parade through Bishop Hill. At 11:30 a chicken dinner will be served at the Colony School. At 12:15 the Bishop Hill High Society Band will perform in the gazebo in the town square. The formal program is scheduled to begin at 1:30 in the park. The public is invited to attend. The rain location for the High Society Band Concert and Program is the Bishop Hill Community United Methodist Church. Parade rain date Sunday, Sept 11;00 at 1pm.
Louis and Marion Nelson 2016 Parade Grand Marshals, right
Cinda Anderson, BHOSA President, left 

The Bishop Hill Old Settlers' Association has chosen Bishop Hill residents, Marian and Louis Nelson, as the Grand Marshals for the 2016 Old Settlers' Day Parade.

Marion and Louis are direct descendants of the original colony settlers and both were born within a mile of Bishop Hill. They have made their home in Bishop Hill since they were wed in 1947 and have played active roles in building and growing this community. Over several decades, Louis has applied his extensive carpentry expertise in preserving many of Bishop Hill's fine old buildings and Marion has lent her hand and culinary skills in fundraising for multiple organizations and events. The BHOSA is proud to have this outstanding couple lead this year's parade!

Monday, August 22, 2016

Bishop Hill Chautauqua, Immigrants, and Jonas Olson

Bishop Hill's
4th Annual Chautauqua 
Sat, August 27 and Sun, August 28
This year’s theme is America’s Story: The Immigrants’ Tale. Learn how immigrants have impacted history and continue to impact modern day society through the stories told by reenactors portraying famous historical characters. This free family oriented event will be held in the village park. Folks are encouraged to bring a lawn chair. Raining? Join us in the Colony School. This free public event is sponsored by the Bishop Hill Heritage Association, Barbro Osher Pro Suecia Foundation, Illinois Arts Council Agency, Bill and Susan Sherrard Foundation, Swedish Council of America, private donations, and the Twinflower Inn Bed and Breakfast. Email or call 309 927-3899 for more information.
The Chautauqua Schedule
Saturday, August 27
10am - A workshop for Teachers, Actors, Storytellers
and Students on “Storytelling for Children” exploring
literacy development with Brian "Fox" Ellis and
Tersi Bendiburg in the Dairy Building.
1pm - An Irish Immigrant’s Tale (Brian “Fox” Ellis)
2:15pm - Two Modern Immigrants Cuban Storyteller Tersi Bendiburg &
Tunisian Bradley Professor Souhail Elhouar PhD.
3:30pm - Jenny Lind; The Swedish Nightingale (Sherri Mitchell)

Sunday, August 28
1pm - Laura Ingalls Wilder; America’s Emigration West (Sarah Uthoff)
2:15pm - Williamsfield Students perform as historical figures
3:30pm - Jonas Olson; A Bishop Hill Founding Father (Brian “Fox” Ellis)

Tuesday, August 9, 2016

Vikings, Wheat Weavers, Clay/Fiber Artists, & Ice Cream in Bishop Hill this weekend!

There's lots to see and do 
at Bishop Hill's Fiber Fest on
August 13th and 14th
This year's Clay and Fiber Festival, hosted by the Prairie Arts Center, will showcase local and regional pottery artisans creating work at their wheels, firing their pieces and selling their wares. You'll also find jewelry and fiber artists, rug weavers, and a blacksmith demonstrating and displaying work on the lawns surrounding the Blacksmith Shop.
The Bishop Hill Heritage Association will host a Nordic Market in the village park. This encampment will present everyday scenes from the Viking Age.  It will feature the costumed interpreters of Micel Folcland, who will create an eleventh century Anglo-Scandinavian encampment. Textiles, gaming, woodworking, book-binding, moneying, and many more activities from this time period will be demonstrated from on Saturday, 10am to 5pm and Sunday, 10am to 4pm.
While in the park, sample delicious pies from Bishop Hill’s best bakers at a Pie and Ice Cream Social in the Village Park on Saturday, 1pm to 4pm. This is an annual fundraiser for the Bishop Hill Heritage Association. 309-927-3899
Reserve your spot at the Saturday night Soup Supper at the Colony School sponsored by the Prairie Arts Center. Call ahead 309-927-3008. Yummy homemade soup served in a handmade pottery bowl made by festival potters is your treasure to keep.

A Wheat Weaving Demonstration will be held in the Steeple Building Aug 13, 10am to 5pm and Aug 14, 10am to 4pm. Members of the Illinois Association of Wheat Weavers will demonstrate plaiting techniques used to transform wheat straw into delicate works of art. Walk-ins are welcome to try weaving, guided by experienced members of the IAWW. Recent works will be displayed and available to purchase. For information call 217-732-1957.  

Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Bishop Hill Folk Festival July 30th and 31st

Come and enjoy the music this weekend at of one of Illinois’ most historic towns in at this free, family friendly event!  
Main Stage Performances on Saturday July 30 in the Park:
Noon: Paul Wilson & Mary Abendroth (traditional Swedish)
1:00: Bahola (Celtic)
2:00: Joel Mabus (old time and original Midwestern Folk)
3:00: Los Condenados Haustecos (Mexican Ranch Music)
4:00: Chicago Spelmanslag (Swedish Dance music)
5:00: Volo Bogtrotters (Traditional String band)

Saturday Workshops: In the Steeple Building
2:15: Bahola
3:15: Joel Mabus
4:15: Los Condenados Haustecos
5:15: Chicago Spelmanslag

Main Stage Performances on Sunday July 31 in the Park:

Noon: Holy Cross Immaculate Heart of Mary Marimba Ensemble
1:00: Chris Vallillo (Original Rural Illinois music)
2:00: Nordland Band (Swedish)
3:00: Catfish Keith (Blues)
4:00: Bill Robinson and Friends (hammered dulcimer music)

Sunday Workshops: In the Steeple Building
2:15: Bill Robinson
3:15: Nordland Band
4:15: Catfish Keith

Click here to learn all about these remarkable performers .
For more information contact the Bishop Hill Heritage Association or call 309-927-3899.

Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Bishop Hill Car Show Returns
Sunday, July 24, 2016
Sponsored by the
Bishop Hill Old Settlers' Association
Registration is 9am to 11:30am at the historic Colony School. The entry fee is $10.00.  Participants judge the entries from 11:30am-1:30pm. Trophies for the 20 classes (1st, 2nd, and 3rd place), Best Interior, Best Paint, Best Engine and Best of Show, will be presented at 3 p.m. in the Village Park. Download an application here and call 309-937-2474 for more information.

The classes are Street Rod, Street Machine 49-69, Street Machine 70-up, Trucks, 4x4 Trucks, Antique Pre-32, Antique 32-48, Original 49-59, Original 60-69, Original 70-79, Original 80-89, Original 90-99, Original 2000 and up, Corvette, Mustang, 55-56-57, Custom, Special Interest, Kids Class (Under 21), and Muscle Car.  Trophies will be awarded in each class.  Dash plaques will be given to the first 100 entries.
Bishop Hill’s Volunteer Firemen will be serving a grilled pork chop meal in the Park during the event. Show proceeds are used to restore and preserve the 1861 Bishop Hill Colony School.

Wednesday, July 6, 2016

Antique Show Returns to Bishop Hill

Preparations are in progress!
Come rain or shine to the
Bishop Hill Antique Show and Sale
at the Old Colony School
Saturday, July 9th, 2016
9am to 3pm.
Admission  $6
This popular country antique market features 60 exceptional antique dealers from Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Missouri, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Texas Wisconsin. A great selection of primitive antiques, folk art, early country, textiles, stoneware, baskets and more will be available during this one day market.
Bring the whole family. Live Folk Music by "Hammer & Pick." Breakfast and lunch are available by the The Filling Station. This antique market is a rain or shine event. Don’t miss this perfect opportunity to explore for antiques at one of the best shows in the Midwest.
Promoted by Sweet Annie Primitives and the Bishop Hill Bakery and Eatery. For further information call 309-927-3072.

Monday, June 13, 2016

Bishop Hill's Midsommar Music Festival

Bishop Hill’s Midsommar Music Festival will return Saturday, June 18th with a strong line-up of musical performers. Highlights of this all-day event include Main Stage performances, a Swedish Maypole celebration, fundraisers, and an Old-Fashioned Barn Dance.
The free Main Stage performances in the village park gazebo will begin at 11:00am and end at 4pm. This year’s lineup includes the Big River Reeltime Band, Tim Ellis, Jazz on the Side, Hammer & Pick, and Black Hawk Pipes and Drums. Immediately following the Main Stage performances, everyone is invited to decorate the Maypole with flowers and to join the procession. Accordionist Ernie Sandquist will lead the Maypole procession. It will begin in the park and end at the Colony School where visitors can join in the Maypole dancing and have refreshments provided by the Bishop Hill Vasa Lodge. Later that evening, at 7pm, there will be a barn dance at the Colony School with The Rusty Pickup String Band and caller Gail Hintze. Admission to the barn dance is $5 per person.

Two fundraisers will also be occurring during Midsommar. The Henry County Historical Society will be serving ice cream cones in the park from 12:30pm to 4pm. Money from the ice cream sales will be used to support the Henry County Museum. The BHHA will be serving homemade rhubarb baked goods, with coffee and lemonade, at the Steeple Building Museum front porch from 11am to 4pm. Proceeds from this fundraiser will be used to support BHHA activities.

Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Honor Flight Benefit in Bishop Hill

On Sunday, June 12th, Bishop Hill will host a benefit to raise money for the Honor Flight of the Quad-Cities.

This year's Benefit will be held from 3pm to 7pm in the Bishop Hill village park. Over the past five years, the event has raised more than $70,000 which was used to send area veterans on Honor Flights to Washington, DC. Area veterans are provided with a free trip to visit their memorial with priority given to survivors of World War II, Korean War, and any veteran with a terminal illness. Vietnam veterans are now being accepted for the Honor Flight which recently completed its 36th one-day, round trip to Washington with local veterans.

The festivities will begin with a barbecue rib dinner at 3pm, provided by the Filling Station Restaurant and Bishop Hill Community Club.

Motorcycle riders are welcome to join the Illinois Patriot Guard and Legion Riders at the Galva American Legion at 3pm where they will meet to escort the flag to Bishop Hill. At 3:30 p.m, the Illinois Patriot Guard and Legion Riders and other motorcyclists will arrive at the park. At 4 p.m. there will be an invocation and the Presentation of Colors by area VFW and American Legion groups.

Speakers will include Illinois Rep. Donald Moffitt and an Honor Flight representative. During the event, veterans may submit their applications to participate in future Flights. A military retreat is scheduled for 1800 hours exactly (6 p.m.) with a 21-gun salute and taps.

Other entertainment will feature Bishop Hill storyteller, Brian “Fox” Ellis, and Shelley Kinzer, of Bishop Hill, who will provide patriotic music. Activities will include a live auction by Stenzel Auction Service. Auction items still are needed.

To donate or volunteer at the event, call Linda Spring at 309-927-3355.

Tuesday, May 10, 2016

Quilt Show and Wheat Weavers return to Bishop Hill - May 13,14 & 15

There is much to see in Bishop Hill this weekend. Over 100 quilts, furnished by members of the Prairie Queen Quilt Club, will be on display at the Colony School. The Bishop Hill Quilt Show returns Friday thru Sunday, May 13 – 15. 
Each year a special theme is chosen; the title and featured subject for 2016 is Lattice, Leaves, and Landscapes. Presenting quilters range in age and experience but are unified by the excellence of their work. This annual event attracts a large, appreciative audience. Come and see for yourself the vast variety of color combinations, design details, fine stitching and applique techniques that make each quilt a memorable work of art. Be amazed by the painstaking process by which these artists interpret and achieve this year’s theme with bits of fabric and thread! Stroll Bishop Hill to find additional quilts and exhibits in our shops and museums. Visit a special BHHA quilt display at the Steeple Building.
Are you a fan of tradition and exquisite detail?  Stop in at the Steeple Building for a Wheat Weaving Show and Sale Friday thru Sunday, May 13 – 15.  Representatives of the Illinois Association Wheat Weavers will be on hand to demonstrate this ancient art form. Watch as they transform wheat straw into woven works of wonder. Try your hand at wheat weaving techniques, guided by members of the IAWW.  They will gladly answer any questions you may have. Their weavings, books, and tools, will also be available to purchase.

A Vintage Wedding Exhibit featuring wedding dresses dating back to 1883 will be on display throughout the entire weekend at the Henry County Historical Museum.  Friday and Saturday will feature a “vintage” program at 2pm.

Sweet Annie Primitives will host “A Day in the Garden” open house on Saturday from 10am-4pm. Explore Sweet Annie’s primitive d├ęcor for your home and garden. Light refreshments will be served. Details: 309 927-3072.

Tuesday, February 23, 2016

Spring Jubilee in Bishop Hill

Celebrate our Spring Jubilee
here in Bishop Hill, Illinois
Saturday, April 2, 10:00am - 6:00pm

scheduled classes and events
Artful Dining at Hantverk Galleri: Decorate a 3 piece breakfast set of pottery that

will then be fired overnight so you can celebrate breakfast at the Twinflower Inn
Sunday morning at 9:30. Reservations are required.
10:00 to 5:00 on Saturday and 11:00 to 4:00 on Sunday:
Toy Tractor Collectors Display at the Steeple Building Museum.
12:00 - 4:00 Sweet Annie’s Primitives is making a small dried flower bouquet.
The Bishop Hill Museum will have packets of bird nesting materials.
The Colony Store will help you craft a flower pot or a bug catcher!
1:00 Garden Thyme will host a gourd painting workshop.
2:00 The Henry County Museum will host a program on Beekeeping.
3:00 The Twinflower Inn will offer a workshop on How to Plant a Prairie.
4:00 - 6:00 The Vasa National Archives will host the opening of two new exhibits:
“A Swedish Sketch" looks at 19th century Sweden and “Vasa's First Century"
reviews the origins of the Vasa Order of America. Refreshments served.
For More Information call the Bishop Hill Heritage Association at 309-927-3899