Sorin Dutoiu, at 28 Apr. 24, in Destinations

Embark on your next adventure in Illinois, where every trail leads to new discoveries and every landscape tells a story of natural beauty and wonder.

In the heart of the Midwest, Illinois is not just a state known for its bustling cities and urban landscapes; it’s also a haven for outdoor enthusiasts seeking adventure and natural beauty. In 2024, the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity (DCEO), Office of Tourism is promoting the state’s diverse outdoor offerings through an exciting new video series titled “Real People, Real Stories, Real Outdoors.”

Unveiling Illinois’ Natural Wonders

With 70 state parks and recreation areas, 2,900 lakes, and seven national scenic byways, Illinois boasts a wealth of outdoor adventures waiting to be discovered. The “Real People, Real Stories, Real Outdoors” series aims to showcase the authentic experiences of Illinois residents and visitors as they explore the state’s picturesque nature trails, hidden gems, iconic landmarks, and unique accommodations.

Kristin Richards, Director of DCEO, emphasizes the importance of highlighting Illinois as a premier outdoor destination, particularly in downstate areas. The campaign not only inspires travelers to explore the state but also drives economic development in rural communities, showcasing the untapped potential of Illinois’ natural wonders.

Connecting with Nature: Stories of Adventure

The video series features captivating stories of individuals and families as they embark on outdoor escapades across Illinois:

– Family Camping & Fishing: Dennis and Carol Sporleder share their love for family camping and fishing, creating cherished memories with their granddaughters at Rock Cut State Park, Starved Rock, and Matthiessen State Park.

– Nature Escape from Chicago: A group of friends from Chicago finds solace in nature, exploring diverse landscapes at Camp Aramoni’s luxury campground and Rend Lake in Southern Illinois, offering paddling, swimming, and off-the-grid camping experiences.

– Adaptive Climbing Adventures: Meaghan Cusack, an adaptive climber from Chicago, and her squad embark on challenging climbing expeditions at Cave-in-Rock State Park, Giant City State Park, and Pere Marquette State Park, inspiring viewers with their determination and resilience.

Embracing Outdoor Exploration

Natalie Phelps Finnie, Director of the Illinois Department of Natural Resources, encourages residents and visitors to reconnect with nature and discover the state’s vast parks, trails, and recreational areas. As spring approaches, Illinois invites everyone to embark on unforgettable outdoor adventures, from hiking and cycling to horseback riding, canoeing, fishing, and more.

Daniel Thomas, Deputy Director of DCEO, Office of Tourism, emphasizes the endless opportunities for outdoor exploration in Illinois. The video series captures the essence of Illinois’ natural beauty and invites travelers to experience the state’s outdoor wonders firsthand.

Inspiring Adventure Worldwide

The “Real People, Real Stories, Real Outdoors” series will be available on and social media platforms, reaching audiences internationally in Canada, the U.K., Australia, and New Zealand. Supported by Brand USA and Matador, this initiative aims to inspire travelers to embark on unforgettable journeys and discover the magic of Illinois’ great outdoors.

Tags: ,

Comments and reviews

Leave a Comment

We suggest you sign up and log in so you can read and write reviews