Special Events

You will always encounter volunteers on your visit to Lincoln Log Cabin to engage you in the historic experience, but a visit to the site during one of the events below will make your visit extra special. Come and experience 1840s rural life in Illinois!
All events are subject to cancellation and/or rescheduling; please check back often.



 Wool Applique Workshop
Saturday, March 18, 10:00 am
Visitor Center Basement

Loom Hall artisan Peggy Taylor leads this workshop where participants learn the art of wool applique while creating a pinkeep or sachet using wool fabric, embroidery floss, and buttons. The heart design is inspired by 18th-century examples, and combines simple stitches with layered applique. Beginner level through advanced welcome, and each student is welcome to bring vintage buttons to embellish their applique heart. The supply packet includes wool fabrics, a stitch guide handout, and a Loom Hall original pattern designed just for this workshop. All supplies and refreshments will be provided. Workshop fee: $50   Register here.


Easter Fun on the Farms
Sunday, April 2, 1-3 pm

Celebrate a presidential tradition at Lincoln Log Cabin State Historic Site! The Lincolns and Sargents will be hosting a traditional Egg Roll and Easter Egg Hunt, a craft activity, and a story time for children. The Easter Egg Hunt begins at 1:30 p.m., and the Egg Roll begins at 2:30 p.m. Children (12 and under) will be divided into age groups, with each group having staggered start times.

Amateur Radio Club Event
Saturday,  April 15 , 11:00 am to 3:00 pm 

The National Trail Amateur Radio Club (NTARC) members will participate in a special event to mark the anniversary of the death of President Lincoln on Saturday, April 15th from 11am to 3pm. This special event station will be set up at the Visitor Center. Nearly 150 years before the advent of texts, tweets and e-mail, President Abraham Lincoln became the first “wired president” by embracing the original electronic messaging technology—the telegraph. The 16th president may be remembered for his soaring oratory that stirred the Union, but the nearly 1,000 bite-sized telegrams that he wrote during his presidency helped win the Civil War by projecting presidential power in unprecedented fashion. During the Civil War, telegraph wires were strung to follow the action on the battlefield. But there was no telegraph office in the White House, so Lincoln went across the street to the War Department to get the news. President Lincoln frequently slept on a cot in the telegraph room to hear the news of major battles. The NTARC members will be communicating with other amateurs from across the world using the Special Event call sign, W9L. This offers a great opportunity to learn about Ham Radio. Visitors will be allowed to talk on the radios under the direct supervision of an FCC licensed amateur. Brochures and handouts will be available about amateur radio.

 Hand Quilting Workshop
Saturday, April 29, 10:00 am to 1:00 pm
Visitor Center Basement

Come do an exploration of hand quilting methods and designs with fiber artisan Cathy Grafton. See examples of how to create quilting that will enhance your quilt top. Learn some ways to mark your top, what kind of threads and needles to use and see how to create unmarked techniques, background fillers, and specialties like stipple quilting. Practice time in class will include ways to help improve your stitches, tips and techniques and how to start and stop without knots. Batting, needles and quilting threads will be provided. Please bring small scissors, sewing notions, favorite marking tools and a piece of solid cotton fabric about 10 x 12 inches to practice your quilting stitches on. We will also have fabric pieces on hand for you to choose from. You may also bring a top you want to design quilting for, if desired. Refreshments provided. Workshop fee: $50. Register here.  

Threads of History – The Story of the Bayeux Tapestry
Presented by Cathy Grafton
Sunday, April 30, 2:00 pm
Visitor Center Auditorium

This world-famous embroidery depicts the meeting of Harold of England and William, Duke of Normandy, later the Conqueror then graphically illustrates the 1066 Battle of Hastings. Created with a few years of the battle; it continues to hold mysteries, which intrigue us to this day. Cathy Grafton will tell the story of the tapestry, the history of almost 1,000 years, how it was made and also bring stitched sections based on the original design. 


Weaving Workshops

 Thursdays, May 11th, 18th, and 25th, 6:00 to 9:00 pm
Visitor Center Basement 

 Weave your own kitchen towels! This workshop for beginning weavers will meet three times, on Thursday, May 11th, 18th, and 25th from 6-9 pm in the Visitor Center Basement. In this course you will learn the basics of multi-shaft looms, how they work, and how to weave on them. From learning to read a weaving draft, to warping and dressing a loom, and on to weaving with confidence, we will cover all the bases. When you are finished you will have 2-3 kitchen towels. If you have been yearning to weave, but not sure where or how to begin, start here at Lincoln Log Cabin. Workshop fee- $95 for all three sessions, all materials included. Register here.

Made in Central Illnois! Annual Fundraiser
Friday, May 19, 6:00 pm
Vistor Center and Farms 

Our annual fundraiser will be hosted at the site featuring locally-sourced food as well as a silent auction with items representing Central Illinois! Join us for heavy hors d'oeuvres from local providers, Illinois wines, and music provided by local band, "We Ain't Misbehavin'". Walk around the site to try different foods and experience the site after-hours! We will also have a silent auction with items made in Central Illinois. $80 per person- Register here.


 Cemetery Preservation Workshop 
Saturday, May 20, 9:30 am
Visitor Center Auditorium

 The Governor Edward Coles- Sally Lincoln NSDAR Chapter, Lincoln Log Cabin Foundation, and the Association for the Preservation of Coles County are hosting a cemetery preservation workshop. The expert instructors are John Heider and Dawn Cobb. John is an accomplished cemetery preservation specialist with decades of experience. Dawn is an archaeologist specializing in cemetery preservation with the Illinois Department of Natural Resources. Water and snack provided. Please bring gloves and wear appropriate clothing and shoes for outdoor work at the cemetery.  

Register here.



 Thomas Lincoln: Abraham's Father
Presented by Daniel Cravens Taylor
Saturday June 3, 2:00 pm
Visitor Center Auditorium

Daniel Cravens Taylor, Thomas Lincoln biographer and author of Thomas Lincoln: Abraham's Father, has been studying and researching Abraham Lincoln since he was a child. His interest became centered on Thomas Lincoln upon discovering discrepancies in the historic record and the common portrayal of Thomas in many Lincoln biographies and works. These often portrayed Thomas as lazy, uneducated (and opposed to education), angry, abusive, and poor. But documented interviews with family and friends and the historic documents from his time period reveal a different Thomas. These documents and records compelled Taylor to three years of research, talking to scholars, reading, searching out records, and visiting the sites associated with Thomas Lincoln. Lincoln scholarship is beginning to recognize that the Thomas Lincoln of history is not the Thomas Lincoln given to Lincolniana by William Herndon. Where most scholars spent little time with Thomas eager to get to Lincoln’s adult years, they accepted Herndon’s interpretation without question and wrote Thomas off. Now, with Herndon’s records readily available and many other documents in archives, it is possible to look for the real Thomas. Taylor has spent the time to discover Thomas and will walk us down that path in this presentation.

 Vintage Baseball
Sunday, June 18, 1:00 pm
Sargent Farm

Come out and learn how to play baseball 19th-century style! Experts will teach you the rules and techniques. All are welcome to play or just watch!    




 Vintage Baseball
Sunday, July 2, 1:00 pm
Sargent Farm

Come out and learn how to play baseball 19th-century style! Experts will teach you the rules and techniques. All are welcome to play or just watch!  

 Vintage Baseball
Sunday, July 23, 1:00 pm
Sargent Farm

Come out and learn how to play baseball 19th-century style! Experts will teach you the rules and techniques. All are welcome to play or just watch!  



 Vintage Baseball
Sunday, August 6, 1:00 pm
Sargent Farm

Come out and learn how to play baseball 19th-century style! Experts will teach you the rules and techniques. All are welcome to play or just watch!  

Bluegrass Jam
Sunday, August 13- 11-4

Anyone with a love of this traditional style of music is welcome; bring lawn chairs or a blanket. Those who play an instrument are encouraged to bring theirs along and join in a jam session with one of the many informal groups playing in the park. Volunteers will be selling concessions.

Vintage Baseball
Sunday, August 20, 1:00 pm
Sargent Farm 

Come out and learn how to play baseball 19th-century style! Experts will teach you the rules and techniques. All are welcome to play or just watch!  



 Vintage Baseball
Sunday, September 3, 1:00 pm
Sargent Farm

Come out and learn how to play baseball 19th-century style! Experts will teach you the rules and techniques. All are welcome to play or just watch!  

History of American Pies
Presented by Catherine Lambrecht
Sunday, September 17, 2:00 pm
Visitor Center Auditorium
… and Illinois is well represented! Pies are as American as pizza is American: we took a great idea, adapted it to our needs and ran with it. Our ancestors used what they had available locally and made the most from it. You might be thinking that pies are just for dessert, but for our American ancestors, they were often considered survival food. Sometimes, they ate pie for breakfast, lunch and dinner for months at a time. Catherine Lambrecht, who achieved Grand Champion and Best of Show at the Lake County Fair for apple pie, will present the history of pies in America and our state. Illinois’ contribution to our country’s pie culture includes the following: Pumpkin Pie is Illinois’ State Pie, with over 90 percent of canned pumpkin grown in Illinois the pecan pie Did you know Johnny Appleseed roamed our state? Apples originating in Kazakhstan are an introduced crop everywhere in the Americas. Lambrecht will share a story from the Family Heirloom Recipe Contest at the Illinois State Fair of love, family, a special pie, and a gift of immeasurable value.

September 23-24- 10:00 am to 4:00 pm
Harvest Frolic Fall Celebration

Come celebrate the arrival of autumn at the Harvest Frolic on Saturday and Sunday, September 23 and 24 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. The event is free and open to the public. Don't miss experiencing 19th-century life on the farm! Activities will take place at both the Lincoln and Sargent farms and will include children's games, crafts, and hearth cooking. Visitors are encouraged to take part in period games and activitie and get their photo with President Lincoln!  A number of artisans will be on site demonstrating their crafts including, spinning, pottery, broommaking, blacksmithing, embroidery, and many other 19th-century crafts. The Unreconstructed String Band will perform, storyteller and dulcimer player, Mike Anderson, will perfom, the Clockwork Clown will be returning, take in the view with the Grand Camera Obscura, sideshow performers Hoosier Spectacle will perform sideshow stunts of sword swallowing and juggling, Common Stock Entertainment will showcase their cabinet of curiosities,and on Sunday only go on a nature walk or watch a performance from storyteller Brian "Fox" Ellis, historic cricket demonstrations will also be available on Sunday. Food trucks include Slow-Spark BBQ and J.D.'s SmokeShack, Kettle Korn, and We-Lik-It ice cream on Sunday. A pop-up farmers market at the front of the park will feature Four Little Pumpkins Farm and we will be playing vintage baseball both days. See schedule here



Moving Day for Laura Ingalls Wilder 
Presented by Laura Keyes
Sunday, October 15, 2:00 pm
Visitor Center Auditorium

It’s Moving Day for Laura Ingalls Wilder! In this first-person presentation Laura is preparing to move her family from South Dakota to Missouri in the Spring of 1894. This program displays the challenges and some of the fun aspects of life on the frontier in 1870s and 1880s. Come and learn about the chores Laura had as a girl, and discover what special things she is packing up for her big move.  


 Basket Weaving Workshop
Saturday, October  21, 10:00 am
Visitor Center Basement

Introduction to Basket Weaving: Weaving a Bread Basket,  All materials will be provided including lunch, and by the end of the day participants will take home a 4” H x 7” W x 13 3/4” L bread basket. $60 includes lunch and all materials, register here

 Torchlight Halloween Hike, Storytelling, and Wiener Roast
Saturday, October 28, 5:00 pm- 8:00 pm

 You won’t want to miss the chance to enjoy Lincoln Log Cabin in the dark! Join in this fun-for-all-ages stroll as the paths between our historic farms are lit by torchlight. There will be music, storytelling, bonfires, and a wiener roast near the Visitor Center to benefit programming at Lincoln Log Cabin. Volunteers from the Lincoln Log Cabin Foundation will be selling cider, hotdogs, and s'mores for you to roast over the fire. The Torchlight Hike covers mixed terrain, so please wear appropriate footwear and seasonal outerwear. Rain or shine! A Note for Parents: Some stories in the Lincoln Cabin are "spooky," but all are kid-friendly. The pathway between the farms is lit by torchlight, but may be a bit scary for children who are afraid of the dark. Actors in historic clothing and "friendly ghost" makeup are walking along the path to interact with guests. They will be carrying lanterns and are NOT intended to be frightening.






Old Fashioned Christmas on the Prairie
Sunday, December 3, 1-4 pm

Come out to enjoy an old-fashioned Christmas on the Prairie and get away from the hustle and bustle of holiday chores! Stop into the Visitor Center, which is decorated for the season. Enjoy light refreshments and visit the children's craft stations. Take a stroll out to the Lincoln Farm while our volunteers bake gingerbread on the hearth, and take a horse and carriage ride around the site. The East Central Chorale will lead carols in the auditorium at 1:00 pm. The Goosenest Prairie Gift Shop will also be open for you to pick up those unique gifts you've been looking for, including many locally sourced products and a great selection of items handcrafted by our talented volunteers!