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Gail’s guidebook for your trip to the country

Gail

Gail’s guidebook for your trip to the country

Local Attractions and Things To Do
These area attractions are all within an hour's drive or far less.
Peaceful and serene
Pyramid State Recreation Area
1562 Pyramid Park Road
Peaceful and serene
This a surprisingly challenging 9 hole course with a driving range and practice green. New restaurant by accomplished local chef opening soon.
Pyramid Oaks
5501 State Route 4
This a surprisingly challenging 9 hole course with a driving range and practice green. New restaurant by accomplished local chef opening soon.
You can drive right up to this gorgeous spillway and take your going to the top for a swim or just lounge as the water flows by.
Kinkaid Lake
You can drive right up to this gorgeous spillway and take your going to the top for a swim or just lounge as the water flows by.
Home of Popeye! Lots of statues around town for cute pictures.
Chester
Home of Popeye! Lots of statues around town for cute pictures.
Step back in time in this historic French setting.
Fort de Chartres
1350 IL-155
Step back in time in this historic French setting.
The views are simply amazing.
Fort Kaskaskia Historical Site
4372 Park Rd
The views are simply amazing.
This French historic home is beautiful and has guided tours available. Well worth a stop on your leisurely road trip.
Pierre Menard Home State Historic Site
4230 Kaskaskia Street
This French historic home is beautiful and has guided tours available. Well worth a stop on your leisurely road trip.
This is one of the oldest French Colonial settlements in the US. In addition to antiques shopping and historic buildings, there’s a wide array of eating and drinking places to enjoy your day.
Ste. Genevieve
This is one of the oldest French Colonial settlements in the US. In addition to antiques shopping and historic buildings, there’s a wide array of eating and drinking places to enjoy your day.
Great for hiking. Take a picnic basket and enjoy your day surrounded by nature’s beauty.
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Giant City State Park
235 Giant City Road
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Great for hiking. Take a picnic basket and enjoy your day surrounded by nature’s beauty.
Beautiful scenery and great hiking trail. Stop here before or after you wine trail afternoon.
Little Grand Canyon
Beautiful scenery and great hiking trail. Stop here before or after you wine trail afternoon.
Cute boutique Shops on Main Street feature clothing, home decor and thoughtful gifts. Also stop in the antique stores to find surprising treasures. Grab lunch or dinner at Brunzeez or Gabby’s and head out to LongBranch for an interesting afternoon or evening at the best local country bar you may ever find.
Ava
Cute boutique Shops on Main Street feature clothing, home decor and thoughtful gifts. Also stop in the antique stores to find surprising treasures. Grab lunch or dinner at Brunzeez or Gabby’s and head out to LongBranch for an interesting afternoon or evening at the best local country bar you may ever find.
This veteran's museum is fascinating. It is the accomplishment of a private citizen with only donations and no government funding. That, in and of itself, proves this is labor or love. From the website: "This awe-inspiring full-scale (Vietnam) Wall offers veterans, civilians and those currently serving a place to reflect on the sacrifices of all service men and women in the quiet, peaceful setting that Perryville offers – at no cost." Admission is free, and donations are welcomed.
Missouri's National Veterans Memorial
1172 Veterans Memorial Parkway
This veteran's museum is fascinating. It is the accomplishment of a private citizen with only donations and no government funding. That, in and of itself, proves this is labor or love. From the website: "This awe-inspiring full-scale (Vietnam) Wall offers veterans, civilians and those currently serving a place to reflect on the sacrifices of all service men and women in the quiet, peaceful setting that Perryville offers – at no cost." Admission is free, and donations are welcomed.
Local Places to Eat and Drink
It's all about the mom and pop joints around here. This list is a variety of local favorites from home cooking to fine(r) dining:-)
No need to dress up when you stop here for a bucket of cold beers. Come as you are, and stay all evening. This tavern was originally a Ford Model T shop! It turned into a bar longer ago than anyone can remember, and it hasn’t changed much over the years. It’s always been operated by local families, come and enjoy the hospitality. Tell Randy, Deb and Kody I sent you. And if you’re adventurous, try a pickled egg or two while you’re there.
Shiloh Hill Tavern
3220 3rd Street
No need to dress up when you stop here for a bucket of cold beers. Come as you are, and stay all evening. This tavern was originally a Ford Model T shop! It turned into a bar longer ago than anyone can remember, and it hasn’t changed much over the years. It’s always been operated by local families, come and enjoy the hospitality. Tell Randy, Deb and Kody I sent you. And if you’re adventurous, try a pickled egg or two while you’re there.
Great fried chicken and a cold drink for your Sunday drive.
Bottoms Up Family Bar & Grill
3683 Neunert Rd
Great fried chicken and a cold drink for your Sunday drive.
Fantastic food and a wide variety of IPA’s and other beers on draught in a historic building just off “the square” in Perryville, MO.
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Mary Jane Burgers & Brew
102 N Jackson St
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Fantastic food and a wide variety of IPA’s and other beers on draught in a historic building just off “the square” in Perryville, MO.
This is my favorite restaurant in the area! The menu features fresh ingredients and my favorite local chef. Wine list supports the menu nicely without being complicated. Sit by the fire pit in the horse arena while you wait or after dinner. The W always wows my taste buds and never disappoints.
The W Restaurant & Lounge
7230 Illinois
This is my favorite restaurant in the area! The menu features fresh ingredients and my favorite local chef. Wine list supports the menu nicely without being complicated. Sit by the fire pit in the horse arena while you wait or after dinner. The W always wows my taste buds and never disappoints.
Paul and team are friendly and will welcome you to “ The Fish House” as it's locally known. Patio seating and take-out available too. The “adult burger” and the blue gill dinner are my favorites. And the best part... it’s only 3 miles from Jonathan’s House!
Hook Line and Sinker
5635 State Route 4
Paul and team are friendly and will welcome you to “ The Fish House” as it's locally known. Patio seating and take-out available too. The “adult burger” and the blue gill dinner are my favorites. And the best part... it’s only 3 miles from Jonathan’s House!
Not your typical buffet! This is home cooking without the mess. Great for breakfast too.
Reids' Harvest House
2440 State St
Not your typical buffet! This is home cooking without the mess. Great for breakfast too.
Diner style menu and service plus fresh baked pies and pastries make this a great little stop on your way to Pierre Menard Home, Fort Kaskaskia and Fort de Chartres. I love Jodie’s for breakfast!
Jodie's Ol' Farmhouse Cafe-Bakery
639 State Street
Diner style menu and service plus fresh baked pies and pastries make this a great little stop on your way to Pierre Menard Home, Fort Kaskaskia and Fort de Chartres. I love Jodie’s for breakfast!
It’s a lovely way to spend the day. Take your time on this leisurely and scenic trail featuring local wines in cozy little wine joints across the countryside.
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Shawnee Hills Wine Trail
2865 Hickory Ridge Rd
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It’s a lovely way to spend the day. Take your time on this leisurely and scenic trail featuring local wines in cozy little wine joints across the countryside.
Great local favorite for an easy evening out. Get to Ava in time to visit the shops on Main Street, eat a great steak, burger or fish at Gabby’s and head out to LBS for pool, darts and more. Usually features live music or local DJ on Saturday nights. Great people watching, too. Tell Terri and Beth I sent you, and you'll get a special treat on me:-)
Longbranch Shooting House & Saloon
369 South McBride Road
Great local favorite for an easy evening out. Get to Ava in time to visit the shops on Main Street, eat a great steak, burger or fish at Gabby’s and head out to LBS for pool, darts and more. Usually features live music or local DJ on Saturday nights. Great people watching, too. Tell Terri and Beth I sent you, and you'll get a special treat on me:-)
Always great food in an old tavern setting along with cute and cozy patio seating. I like the steaks here the best!
Gabby's
214 W Main St
Always great food in an old tavern setting along with cute and cozy patio seating. I like the steaks here the best!
Great home cooking. Join the local farmers and other characters for breakfast, lunch or dinner. The Philly steak omelette is one of my favorites for breakfast, or go for the homemade biscuits and gravy. The fried chicken is one of my favorites for lunch, and you have to get the fried mushrooms while you're there, too.
Brunzeez Cafe
209 W Main St
Great home cooking. Join the local farmers and other characters for breakfast, lunch or dinner. The Philly steak omelette is one of my favorites for breakfast, or go for the homemade biscuits and gravy. The fried chicken is one of my favorites for lunch, and you have to get the fried mushrooms while you're there, too.
This is our local Amish store. They are renowned for their fantastic deli sandwiches on fresh baked bread, very generous portions and Amish “bread and butter” pickles to complete the flavor. Wide assortment of sweet treats, jar goods like jelly and other spreads, and more. And the friendly service can’t be beat! Get a soft-serve ice cream cone and take some time to relax outside on the patio furniture. Tell Gerald, Matthew, Ruth and the rest of the ladies I sent you.
Shawnee Country Store
133 Foss Rd
This is our local Amish store. They are renowned for their fantastic deli sandwiches on fresh baked bread, very generous portions and Amish “bread and butter” pickles to complete the flavor. Wide assortment of sweet treats, jar goods like jelly and other spreads, and more. And the friendly service can’t be beat! Get a soft-serve ice cream cone and take some time to relax outside on the patio furniture. Tell Gerald, Matthew, Ruth and the rest of the ladies I sent you.
I'm not a craft beer aficionado, but I know this place has great service and a special atmosphere after a pretty drive out to the property.
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Scratch Brewing Company
264 Thompson Road
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I'm not a craft beer aficionado, but I know this place has great service and a special atmosphere after a pretty drive out to the property.
Authentic Mexican food in a cute little setting. I love their chicken chimichanga. Habla espanol? It helps if you do:-)
Mi Pueblo Restaurant
209 West Pine Street
Authentic Mexican food in a cute little setting. I love their chicken chimichanga. Habla espanol? It helps if you do:-)
Our hometown family owned market has a fantastic butcher shop. Call ahead for thick cut steaks or other special orders. They have a hot bar and cold deli for great take out meals. Call ahead for the daily hot bar specials: 618-965-3813. The Marketplace offers a nice variety of groceries, beer, wine and liquor, a bakery and basics like paper products. The bakery takes special orders, too, so get your birthday cake or other baked goods here for your special occasions.
Steeleville Marketplace
306 West Broadway Street
Our hometown family owned market has a fantastic butcher shop. Call ahead for thick cut steaks or other special orders. They have a hot bar and cold deli for great take out meals. Call ahead for the daily hot bar specials: 618-965-3813. The Marketplace offers a nice variety of groceries, beer, wine and liquor, a bakery and basics like paper products. The bakery takes special orders, too, so get your birthday cake or other baked goods here for your special occasions.
I haven't been here myself, given that I'm not really into beer. Friends and business colleagues tell me that it's a great place to hang out. I believe they have board games and so forth to make your visit more interesting. They sometimes have local musicians featured as well.
White Rooster Farmhouse Brewery
113 West Jackson Street
I haven't been here myself, given that I'm not really into beer. Friends and business colleagues tell me that it's a great place to hang out. I believe they have board games and so forth to make your visit more interesting. They sometimes have local musicians featured as well.
This is a great place in a restored historic hotel. It's a favorite of bicyclists and a neat little hangout with an outdoor patio. My favorites are the pizzas. Everything's fresh and they feature all sorts of beers plus a full bar.
St. Nicholas Brewing Company
12 S Oak St
This is a great place in a restored historic hotel. It's a favorite of bicyclists and a neat little hangout with an outdoor patio. My favorites are the pizzas. Everything's fresh and they feature all sorts of beers plus a full bar.
Pistol City just has great food. I'm not normally a buffet person, but this is too good to pass up! For take-out, I like the Chicken Philly and the burgers are great too. My client who lives nearby loves their salads, too. They also have a full bar and video gaming.
Pistol City Restaurant & Saloon
505 East Grant Street
Pistol City just has great food. I'm not normally a buffet person, but this is too good to pass up! For take-out, I like the Chicken Philly and the burgers are great too. My client who lives nearby loves their salads, too. They also have a full bar and video gaming.
This is a longstanding, family-owned Italian restaurant. It's casual, and the decor is all from the owners' family area of their ancestral Italy. It's in a really nice, old historic building on the main street in Du Quoin.
Alongi's Italian Restaurant
18 West Main Street
This is a longstanding, family-owned Italian restaurant. It's casual, and the decor is all from the owners' family area of their ancestral Italy. It's in a really nice, old historic building on the main street in Du Quoin.
This is tavern style home cooking at its best. The antique bar has been through multiple Mississippi River floods, but they've preserved the building and the bar and best of all the family tradition of almost 70 years in the business. Finish your lunch with the pie of the day. Watch out for the local characters. They're a great group of farmers and really nice people. You'll feel right at home. Stop here for breakfast or lunch on your trip to see the Missouri's Veterans Museum and Vietnam Wall Memorial life size replica.
Al's Place
This is tavern style home cooking at its best. The antique bar has been through multiple Mississippi River floods, but they've preserved the building and the bar and best of all the family tradition of almost 70 years in the business. Finish your lunch with the pie of the day. Watch out for the local characters. They're a great group of farmers and really nice people. You'll feel right at home. Stop here for breakfast or lunch on your trip to see the Missouri's Veterans Museum and Vietnam Wall Memorial life size replica.
This is my other favorite restaurant. The make their own bone marrow from scratch every week, and the flavor is extraordinary. For that reason alone, order the steak. This is finer dining in our area set in a historic building in the middle of Red Bud. They have a nicely complimenting wine list and full bar. The owners are very nice and the staff is quite accommodating. Go from one extreme to the other and visit their other place called Vice's. It's the local dive bar, just down the street.
opera house bistro
102 South Main Street
This is my other favorite restaurant. The make their own bone marrow from scratch every week, and the flavor is extraordinary. For that reason alone, order the steak. This is finer dining in our area set in a historic building in the middle of Red Bud. They have a nicely complimenting wine list and full bar. The owners are very nice and the staff is quite accommodating. Go from one extreme to the other and visit their other place called Vice's. It's the local dive bar, just down the street.