Friends of Argyle Lake State Park Foundation

Argyle Lake State Park

Interpretive Program Schedule: June - December 2018


Breakfast and Birding: Pontoon Programs

(Alternating) Fridays - 10:00-11:00 a.m.

(Begins 6/1/18; No Programs 6/15, 6/29, 8/10 & 11/16; last outing 11/2/18)

Come enjoy breakfast at the Shanty Shack II on beautiful Lake Argyle before (or lunch afterwards) taking a relaxing pontoon boat ride on the lake. Life jackets, binoculars and field guides will be available or you’re welcome to bring your own. Preregistration is required and space is limited to 6 participants. Please email or call (309)776-3422 for more information or to register.


2018 Paddling Tours of Lake Argyle

Saturday, June 2nd – 10am & 1pm

Saturday, July 7th – 10am & 1pm

Saturday, August 18th – 10am & 1pm

Saturday, September 8th – 10am & 1pm

Saturday, October 6th – 10am & 1pm

Join us for a morning or afternoon of paddling and enjoying nature on beautiful Lake Argyle. Kayaks, paddle boards, paddles, and life jackets are being provided by the Friends of Argyle. Ten adult kayaks, 2 youth kayaks (ages 4-7) and four paddle boards are available, so space is limited to the first 16 people to register for each tour. Tours are being offered two times each day and each program will be about 2 hours. Children under 18 must be accompanied by an adult. Meet at the parking area near the concession for this program. Please register by calling (309)776-3422 or email



Arts in Nature

Saturday, July 7, 2018 – 6:00-8:00 p.m.

Come join us on the evening of Saturday, July 7th at the park’s visitor center for an evening of Arts in Nature. Local hobby artist Carrie Depoy will be sharing her love of rock painting; Copperfields Bookstore, the Colchester Public Library and the park naturalist will share some fun nature stories as well as lead participants in a fun musical activity. Space is limited to first 20 people, to register please call (309)776-3422 or email



Reptiles and Amphibians of Illinois

Saturday, July 14, 2018 – 6:00 - 7:30 p.m.

Come join the park natural resources coordinator and learn about the many reptiles and amphibians found at the park and across Illinois. A few live specimens, which may include a nonvenomous snake, a box turtle, and frog(s), will be available for viewing (and optional handling). Children will receive handouts to learn more about these interesting creatures and experience many hands-on activities! Meet at the park’s Pioneer shelter for this program.

*Stargazing at the Park*

Friday, July 20, 2018 (Raindate: 7/21/18)

8:15 - 11:00 p.m.

Friday, September 21, 2018 (Raindate: 9/22/18)

7:00 – 10:00 p.m.

Friday, October 19, 2018 (Raindate: 10/20/18)

6:00 – 9:00 p.m.

Join us for three evenings of stargazing with WIU astronomy instructor Tom Van Heuklon and hobby astronomist Larry Knicl. We will be observing Jupiter, Mars and Saturn with the addition of Neptune and Uranus in the fall; the Moon; many deep sky objects including star clusters, nebulae, other galaxies, and the varying seasonal constellations. These programs will be held at the park’s Sunset shelter (1st left turn upon entering the park). For your comfort, bring a chair or blanket, insect repellent, and a flashlight. In the event of inclement weather or poor visibility, please call (309)776-3422.

If these programs must be postponed to the raindates or canceled, a recording will be left.



Owls of Illinois

Saturday, August 18, 2018

7:00 – 8:30 p.m.

Join us for a hootin’ good time and learn about the owls that inhabit Argyle Lake State Park. Participants will learn about the owl’s many unique hunting adaptations and its diet by dissecting an owl pellet. We will use a recording of various owl calls to encourage the owls to call back to us. Meet at the park’s Prairieview shelter (2nd right) for this program.



Wildlife Prairie Park’s

Amazing Animals Wildlife Program

Saturday, August 25, 2018

6:00 - 7:00 p.m.

Come learn about native Illinois wildlife (from all five vertebrate animal groups) as naturalists from Wildlife Prairie Park share some interesting facts about several native Illinois animals that will be brought for viewing. This program will be held at the park’s Pioneer shelter (2nd left). For more information about this program, please call the park visitor center/office at (309)776-3422.



Friends of Argyle Lake State Park

Lake Exploration Day

Saturday, September 29, 2018 –

10 a.m. - 2 p.m.

Come join the members of the Friends of Argyle foundation for a day of lake exploration! Many activities will be offered including lake education activities, fishing, kayaking, and pontoon boat rides. FOA will provide hot dogs and drinks and loaner fishing poles will be available. Meet at the lake near the bait shop for this event. Call the visitor center for specific program information (309)776-3422.



Fall Colors Nature Hike

Saturday, Oct. 13, 2018 – 10:00 – 11:30 a.m.

As the breezes become a little brisk and the days begin to shorten, nature begins the process of preparing for the cold winter months ahead. Don’t miss this opportunity to enjoy nature and the magnificent colors of autumn throughout the park. We will meet at the visitor center at 10:00 a.m. and hike 1-2 miles on moderate terrain.



Atkinson McCord Cemetery Tour

Saturday, October 27, 2018 – 10 a.m. - Noon

Join park staff for a historical walking tour of the Atkinson/McCord cemetery located on the park’s property. Participants should be able to walk ½ mile on moderate terrain to access the cemetery. Meet at the park visitor center or at the trap range area.



Illinois Bats: Facts and Myths

Saturday, October 27, 2018 – 6:30-8:00 p.m.

Join us at Argyle Lake as we learn about our only true flying mammal....BATS!!! Local educator and outdoor enthusiast, Mary McMahon will dispel many myths about bats during this informative and entertaining presentation about these mysterious mammals. Participants will have the opportunity to listen to nearby bats feeding on flying insects using an echolocation detection device. Many informative handouts will be available. Meet at the park’s Pioneer shelter for this program (2nd left after entering the park, just past dump station).



Woodland Wonders Nature Hike

Saturday, November 10, 2018

10 – 11:30 a.m.

Explore the wonders of nature and discuss how wildlife prepares for the cold winter months to come on this morning hike on one of Argyle’s most popular trails. Hike will begin at 10 a.m. at the visitor center and conclude by noon.



Winter Woodland Wonders Nature Hike

Saturday, December 15, 2018 – 10 – 11:30 a.m.

Join the site interpreter as we explore the trails of the park in search of the many wonders of winter just waiting to be discovered. Hike topics may include how animals survive in winter, identifying tracks and other wildlife signs, winter tree ID and the mysteries of snow and snowflakes. Hike will begin at 10 a.m. at the park visitor center.





General Program Information:


  •   Meet at the park visitor center for all hikes and programs unless otherwise indicated in above program descriptions.
  •   All  programs  are  free  and  open  to  the  general  public.  Participation  in  any  program  involving  the  use  of  FOA  equipment (skis,  kayaks,  paddleboards,  etc.)  will  require  participants  to become a  member  of the  Friends of Argyle  organization.   Annual membership  fees  are  $10  per  individual,  $15  for  a  single  parent family and $20 for a two parent family.
  •   Please  contact  park  staff  with  any  special  needs  or  concerns prior  to  the  program  date,  so  requested  arrangements /accommodations can be made.
  •   For  more  specific  program  information  or  to  register  for  a program, please call the park visitor center at (309)776-3422or email




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