Illinois February 22, 2017
9 Small Towns In Illinois Where Downtown Is The Place To Be
Over the past 20 years, many towns across the United States have worked to revive their downtown areas to become the center of life once again. This boom has resulted in small towns with shops, restaurants, parks, attractions, events, and more right in the heart of the town. These towns are doing it right when it comes to having a lively downtown area:
Backed by the efforts of the Taylorville Main Street group, this little downtown continues to transform. Visit the farmer's market at Taylorville Square and stop by Bill's Toasty Shop for a burger.
Bill's Toasty Shop: 111 N. Main Street, Taylorville
2. Du Quoin
Du Quoin might be better known for its fairgrounds, but the downtown area has lots to offer visitors. Take a stroll through Keys Park and visit Ye Olde Country Store for the best ice cream in town.
Ye Olde Country Store: 218 E. Main Street, Du Quoin
Downtown Pontiac is full of artistic beauty. Watch for the miniature cars that have been painted by local artists along with over 20 outdoor murals.
Go downtown hungry; whether you get pizza from Reno's or sandwiches from Lucky Dog's Alehouse, you can't go wrong. Be sure to grab a souvenir from Camden's on your way home!
Reno's: 518 N. Side Square, Carlinville
Lucky Dog's Alehouse: 230 E. Side Square, Carlinville
Camden's: 366 S. Side Square, Carlinville
People from all over Hamilton County come to the Music in the Park series held in Downtown McLeansboro each summer. Then, the season ends with Fall Fest, a three-day festival celebrating Autumn's arrival.
Since being named the friendliest small town in the US by Rand McNally in 2013, this town has only continued to improve. Artists have painted murals all across the area, and the Kewanee Hog Days draw visitors downtown each summer.
The Centralia Carillon, a large bell tower, serves as a beautiful centerpiece for the downtown area. While you're there, don't miss Mamma Antonia's Trattoria.
Mamma Antonia's Trattoria: 300 E. Broadway, Centralia
Take a stroll around the square and pop into some of the unique restaurants and stops that Benton has to offer. Be sure to visit County Seat Antique Mall and Memories Antiques to get some shopping done.
County Seat Antique Mall: 303 Public Square, Benton
Memories Antiques: 1104 Public Square, Benton
Downtown Columbia is perfect for foodies! Your best bets are Italian food at Joe's, Thai food from Thai House, or home cooking from Aunt Maggie's On Main.
Joe's: 117 N. Main Street, Columbia
Thai House: 109 S. Main Street, Columbia
Aunt Maggie's On Main: 230 N. Main Street, Columbia
Have you visited the downtown area of any of these towns? Tell us about your experiences in the comments.
For more picturesque places, see
10 Small Towns In Rural Illinois That Are Downright Delightful.