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Trophy fisherman Walter Krause, who has 15 years' experience on the Illinois Muskie Tournament Trail and the Pro Musky Tournament Trail, takes up to two anglers aboard his private boat for a guided trip through two fish-filled Illinois lakes. Whether plumbing the depths of Cedar Lake for striper or pursuing Kinkaid Lake—one of the top trophy-muskie lakes in Illinois—for oversize bass, muskies, and walleyes, participants benefit from Walter’s 46 years of experience and on-board depth finders and GPS. During the course of each customized trip, visitors learn how to track fish movements, how to properly hold rods, and how to train a wall-mounted singing fish to bait other fish with its seductive crooning. Walter provides each angler with life jackets, bait, tackle, and rods, although participants must bring their own fishing licenses, lunches, and weather-appropriate clothing.

1705 Cedar Creek Road
Makanda,
IL
US

We are a small candy company specializing in handcrafted gourmet confectionaries. We use only the best and we don't skimp on ingredients.

520 East Birch Street
Carbondale,
IL
US

A decade before prohibition, Murphysboro's Stecher Brewing Company made more than 40,000 barrels of beer a year. But the Volstead Act ultimately ruined the business, silencing the city's craft beer industry until the recent emergence of new breweries, including Big Muddy Brewing and Scratch Brewing Company. The nonprofit Friends of Murphysboro celebrates the city's craft-beer heritage with its annual Big Muddy Monster Brewfest, where local and nationally renowned breweries gather to supply samples of more than 200 beers.

While established breweries serve their suds, amateurs in the home-brewing contest try to wow pro beer-makers with their recipes. Other pros discuss their processes during the festivals beer seminars, whose topics include how to convince magicians to bottle your batches for you. The rest of fest includes local vendors serving up barbecue and other tasty treats, as well as live musicians strumming danceable tunes.

2610 West Riverside Park Road
Murphysboro,
IL
US

StarView Vineyards is home to both native and French-American hybrid grapes that flourish on the vine during breezy, sunny summers. Seven varieties emerge from those vines, resulting in 12 signature wines, from the semi-dry, citrusy vignoles to the Red Star, a semi-sweet chambourcin. Stop by the tasting room to sip samples of these blends—along with wine slushies and sangrias—or head to the cafe to snack on grilled chicken sandwiches and pasta salad.

5100 Wing Hill Rd
Cobden,
IL
US

It seems like you can use a smartphone for anything these days. You can order food, purchase music, or break off a pipe so you can remove the shattered remains of your old smartphone. Now, thanks to Orderbolt, you can use that phone to simply summon your maintenance team to fix your sink. And pay your rent, too—Orderbolt lets you handle any landlord relations with the push of a button.

1740 Innovation Drive Suite 216
Carbondale,
IL
US

New Health Centers consists of more than 300 health-care practitioners across the country, each working to alleviate corporeal discomfort with natural techniques. Doctors work in conjunction with experienced practitioners to soothe aches, pains, and lawn-gnome infestations.

1100 West Main Street
Carbondale,
IL
US