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COVID-19 Response and Precautions


Updated: 6/25/2020

The Rock Island County Forest Preserve District is closely monitoring the developments of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) in Illinois and around the world, keeping the safety of our staff and park visitors top-of-mind.  The Forest Preserve Office at Loud Thunder Forest Preserve reopened to the public on Friday, May 29th.  At this time, the District is following the Executive Orders and procedures set forth in the Restore Illinois Plan to help prevent the spread of COVID-19 when visitors utilize the District's facilities.  This is a fluid situation, so please check back for updates. 
 
Beginning June 26 groups sizes of up to 50 visitors will be permited if proper social distancing and group management is being enforced, this includes picnic shelters at the preserves.  Capacity restrictions and group sizes will be reassessed based on the latest science and public health metrics on an ongoing basis throughout Phase IV of the Restore Illinois Plan.

Playgrounds at all District facilities will contine to closed until furhter notice. 

Indian Bluff Golf Course will be operating by the guidelines put forth by the Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity. 

The campgrounds at Loud Thunder and Illiniwek opened to the public on May 29th with the following guidelines put forth by the Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity and Illinois Department of Public Health.  The restrooms and shower buildings are made available to campers and the general public.  The District will require masks and will place limits on the number of visitors in office buildings where social distancing can not be utilized. 

The Lake George boat rental at Loud Thunder Forest Preserve opened to the public on May 29th.  The boat rental is open Wednesday through Sunday from 8:00 AM to 7:00 PM.

The public boat launch at Lake George is open to boaters.  Electric trolling motors only.  Kayakers and canoers are welcome to use this launching point.

The public boat launches to the Mississippi River at Illiniwek and Loud Thunder Forest Preserve are open to the public.  Dock availability is dependent on Mississippi River levels.

We ask that you do not visit any of our parks if you are experiencing, or you have been exposed to someone experiencing, symptoms such as cough, sore throat, fatigue, fever, shortness of breath, etc.  Should you choose to visit our parks, we urge you to follow all precautionary measures recommended by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, World Health Organization and state officials.

Loud Thunder, Illiniwek, Dorrance Park and Martin Conservation Area
Per typical operating procedure, the trails at Loud Thunder Forest Preserve, Illiniwek Forest Preserve, Martin Conservation Area and Dorrance Park will remain open weather pending. For status of trail closures you can visit the Loud Thunder or Illiniwek Facebook pages, or call us at Loud Thunder (309-795-1040) or at Illiniwek (309-203-1404).

Here are a few steps trail users can take to practice social distancing:
  • Do not use trails if you’re experiencing any of the symptoms listed above
  • Wash hands prior to heading to the trails, bring hand sanitizer with you on the trails
  • Follow the CDC’s recommended social distancing of six feet from other people when walking, hiking or biking in our parks.
  • Warn other trail users of your presence – when you pass allow proper distance and step off trails to allow others to pass 
  • Bring water – public drinking fountains are NOT recommended at this time
  • Do not leave any trash or personal items behind in the park – please take them with you to protect our staff.
Indian Bluff Golf Course
For the most recent COVID-19 updates from Indian Bluff Golf Course, please visit, www.indianbluffgolfcourse.com .
 
Niabi Zoo
For the most recent COVID-19 updates from Niabi Zoo, please visit, www.niabizoo.com .
 
Thank you for your continued support of the Rock Island County Forest Preserve District! We will keep this page updated with developments as they are available.