Feb 5 - 7th | Special Olympics Illinois Winter Games
Weekend Long | Chestnut Mountain Resort
Cheer on over 400 athletes as they go for the gold in Alpine Skiing, Cross-Country Skiing and Snowshoeing! For three days athletes from around the state will compete in the Special Olympics Illinois Winter Games.
Feb 15 - 17th | Winter Carnival Weekend
Weekend Long | Eagle Ridge Resort & Spa
Have fun with the whole family while making cherishable memories. Enjoy a cozy bonfire while watching the Hot Air Balloon Glow, play snow games, watch ice carving and more. The complete schedule of events is listed on Eagle Ridge's web site.
The Nordic Center on the South Course:
• Sledding on the 18th hole with a 75-foot vertical drop
• Cross-country skiing
• Ice skating on a 1.5-acre pond
For Mangelsen enthusiasts living in or visiting the Chicago area:
Feb 16th thru June 2nd | Thomas D. Mangelsen: A Life in the Wild
Daily | 2430 N Cannon Dr, Chicago, IL
The Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum is hosting “A Life in the Wild”, an exhibition containing 40 of Mangelsen’s most resonant images—images that take viewers on a journey into the haunts of iconic species whose struggles for survival are metaphorical fulcrums for reflection in the 21st century.
Mar 22 - 23rd | Wine Lovers Weekend
Weekend Long | Turner Hall
Take part in one of Illinois largest indoor wine tastings. Sip and savor your way through this 12th annual Grand Tasting event, while choosing from over 250 wines. This is a citywide celebration of good wine, good food and good friends.
Apr 12 - 14th | Ulysses S. Grant’s Birthday Celebration Weekend
Various times and Locations throughout Galena
A weekend celebration of the birthday of our 18th president, Ulysses S. Grant, right here in Galena. U.S. Grant lived in Galena prior to the civil war and ran for president while living in Galena.
Apr 26 - 28th | U.S. Grant Pilgrimage
Various times and Locations throughout Galena
The U.S. Grant Pilgrimage is a weekend full of activities for the general public and scout groups, celebrating Ulysses S. Grant's birthday. Enjoy Civil War reenactments & encampment, the Galena Fire Department’s bucket brigade and watch as Midwest scouting group’s parade down Galena’s Historic Main Street.
Things to Do in and around Galena, Illinois
Eagle Ridge Inn & Resort
Championship golf, hiking, biking, boating, horseback riding, tennis, fishing, hot air balloon rides, swimming, spa, lodging, cross country skiing, ice skating, sledding, etc. Eagle Ridge is a resort for all seasons!
Chestnut Mountain Ski Resort
Skiing, snowboarding, lodging, alpine slide, zip line, Mississippi River Cruises, mini golf, and bike rentals.
Parks and Trails
Explore the many parks and trails in Galena. Bring your hiking boots or rent a bicycle for a scenic and breathtaking ride. Visit Casper Bluff Land & Water Reserve, Galena River Trail, Grant Park, Horseshoe Mount Preserve, Galena Gateway Park and more.
Local Beer, Wine and Spirits
Galena Cellars Winery, Blaum Bros. Distilling Co., Galena Brewing Company, and others.
Fashion boutiques, antiques, crafts, collectibles and locally-made gourmet fares. Voted one of “America’s Best Main Streets” by Fodor’s Travel and Parade.com, you’ll love browsing through Galena’s 19th-century downtown with more than 100 storefronts.
Historic city trolley tours, house tours, ghost tours, river cruises.
National Mississippi River Museum and Aquarium in nearby Dubuque, IA (15 miles)
Part aquarium, part museum, part science center, the National Mississippi River Museum & Aquarium (In Association with the Smithsonian Institution) inspires stewardship by creating educational experiences where history and rivers come alive! The 14-acre campus on the banks of the Mississippi River features two separate two-story buildings and an expansive outdoor plaza. The Museum & Aquarium is home to over 100 species of animals and thousands of historic artifacts.
The Diamond Jo Casino, The Q Casino and Iowa Greyhound Park in nearby Dubuque, IA (15 miles).
Cannova’s Pizzeria and Italian Eatery
Established in 1921, Cannova’s continues to offer specialty pizzas including the Classic, the Sicilian and the Chicken Tuscany along with a variety of Italian favorites like Lasagna and Chicken Parmesan. The quaint and cozy pizzeria also features an interesting selection of wines.
Fried Green Tomatoes
Galena's Fried Green Tomatoes restaurant serves the finest USDA Choice Steaks, Fresh Seafood and boasts a Wine Spectator Award Winning wine list. Outstanding service and an inviting atmosphere make Fried Green Tomatoes a must stop while in downtown historic Galena, Illinois.
Fritz and Frites
A cozy bistro preparing European-style fare such as schnitzel, steak frites & garlic roasted chicken. Enjoy a glass of French wine with an appetizer or a bottle of German beer with some chicken liver pate! Whatever your taste or appetite, Fritz and Frites will meet or exceed your expectations.
Otto’s Place Café
Both a Café and Lounge focusing primarily on breakfast and lunch. Otto’s offers food options and an atmosphere not provided by other restaurants in Galena. They have an ever changing menu focusing on healthy home cooking, organic and vegetarian options, featuring local products where and when possible. On weekend evenings they offer light dinner specials, appetizers, homemade desserts, coffee, tea, wine, beer and spirits.
Vinny Vanucchi's Little Italy
Family owned and operated, Vinny's Italian eatery serves up steaming plates of tasty traditional meals like chicken marsala, veal parmigiano and fettuccini alfredo. The cozy interior space features an old world-style deli, three separate levels for dining, exposed brick walls, large windows and checkered cloths on the tables.
The historic Goldmoor Inn is the only Galena bed and breakfast located high above the banks of the Mississippi River with stunning views of the river. The Goldmoor bed and breakfast is located just minutes from downtown Galena, Illinois offering whirlpool suites, private fireplaces, a private in-room gourmet breakfast, and a romantic dining experience. Enjoy Thomas D. Mangelsen nature and wildlife photography in the lobby.
Jail Hill Inn
Jail Hill Inn offers gracious lodging for a perfect getaway. The inn delivers the ultimate in relaxation, luxury accommodations and location. Tucked away, yet close enough to walk to Galena’s historic Main Street, the 135-year-old, 4-story brick building (which served as the county jail for nearly 100 years) has been lovingly transformed into Galena’s premier bed and breakfast inn. Enjoy Thomas D. Mangelsen nature and wildlife photography throughout the inn.
Desoto House Hotel
Built in 1855, this historic hotel has played host to Civil War Generals and U.S. Presidents. It is Illinois’ oldest operating hotel and features 55 Victorian-style guest rooms, enclosed guest parking, three restaurants, meeting, banquet and wedding facilities along with a self-guided historic walking tour.
Stoney Creek Inn
Enjoy a relaxing and comfortable outdoor lodging experience indoors. With 75 uniquely designed guest rooms and suites located in Galena, Illinois, you can enjoy the original Stoney Creek wooden details that give you a place to escape and unwind.
Bed and Breakfasts
Enjoy one of Galena's wonderful Bed and Breakfasts for a unique, relaxing, homey getaway. There are many to choose from depending on your style!
Hotel Julien (in nearby Dubuque, IA)
In 1839, travelers’ first sight as they crossed the Mississippi River into Dubuque was a hotel on the corner of 2nd and Main. This old “Julien Hotel” hosted famous guests such as Abraham Lincoln, “Buffalo Bill” Cody and Mark Twain before it burned to the ground. Rebuilt in 1915, it gained notoriety thanks to Al Capone and was ultimately purchased by the current ownership in 1962. Now 180 years later, after a $30 million interior renovation and exterior restoration, the Hotel Julien Dubuque has redefined elegance through the blending of its rich history with modern luxury and style.
Grand Harbor Resort and Waterpark (in nearby Dubuque, IA)
Ideally situated in the Port of Dubuque, Iowa and featuring a winning combination of service, amenities and entertainment, the Grand Harbor Resort & Waterpark is the Midwest’s premier destination for meetings, group events and family vacations.