Illinois February 08, 2018
16 Things That Will Always Make Illinoisans Think Of Home
Living in Illinois has likely left you with some fond memories. If you’ve ever had to move away, though, you probably get nostalgic for the comforts of a familiar place. Here are 16 things that make Illinoisans remember home and wish they could return ASAP.
If this list gives you FOMO (fear of missing out), just remember that it will all be here when you return. Scroll on for all the best things about our state.
1. Gravel roads.
Much of Illinois is country roads and farmland. Many roads are not paved and are instead made from dirt or gravel. Some people hate driving on them because the stones hit your car and dust sticks to the side, but they are quintessential to life in the middle of nowhere.
2. Snow storms.
Really, any inclement weather will make you remember home if you're from Illinois. We get some of the heaviest rains and snowfalls in the country, so we're used to it.
Those winter storms always leave a little bit of magic behind. Seeing ice coat trees or drip from roof tops makes you feel like a kid again. Try to resist the urge to eat the icicles though.
4. Covered bridges.
Just as charming as any Midwestern state, Illinois is home to bridges, especially adorable ones like this. While not all are cleared for anything other than pedestrian traffic, they are all wonderful for photos.
5. Quiet small towns.
Though home to one of the biggest cities in the nation, Illinois still has plenty of rural spaces and tiny little towns. Life is slower and calmer here, and it's not hard to remember home when you pass one.
Orange barrels line the roads almost every time of year in Illinois. Especially during summer, crews are out day and night fixing who knows what.
7. Corn fields.
Nothing is more iconic to Illinois than corn. More than 85 percent of our state is covered in fields to grow this stuff, and at harvest time, we go crazy for it.
8. City lights.
The glow of a distant skyline will undoubtedly make you think of Chicago if you are from Illinois. Nothing is as beautiful as the city shining at night.
9. Large bodies of water.
Whether you're by the sea or another Great Lake, you'll likely remember the endless beaches, crashing waves, and horizons found along Lake Michigan. We'll take our lake over an ocean any day.
10. Fried fish.
Of course, food is sure to make you remember home faster than anything. Fried fish on a Friday says Illinois better than just about anything else. Luckily, many places around the Midwest are all about this tradition.
11. Tenderloin sandwiches.
Illinoisans can't get enough of this amazing dish. Try one from out of state, and you'll instantly be comparing it to your favorite sammich back home.
Illinois is the
pizza capital of the world
, so it's hard not to think of your hometown favorite every time you try a pie elsewhere. Whether you like it thick or thin, Illinois does all the styles right.
13. Cheese fries.
We typically enjoy this delicious dish atop a hamburger patty and slice of bread (i.e. a horseshoe sandwich), but we'll take it either way. It's difficult to resist this salty, delicious mess.
14. State fairs.
Nothing will make you remember home like a festival. Be it for a county or the state, a carnival will instantly take you back to summers in Illinois.
15. Farmers markets.
This summer and fall commodity is special in Illinois. Locals love to get their produce from local growers and enjoy visiting these stands weekly, when they are available.
These glowing night bugs are like streaks of lightning in the night. Nothing will take you back to lazy summer nights in Illinois like the light show from these critters.
Another thing that might make you think of home is having one of these
11 bizarre experiences that all Illinoisans know well.
How else do you remember home in Illinois? Share your thoughts with us in the comments below!