The state historic site of Bishop Hill, Illinois, will begin the 2014 season with kick-off activities on Saturday, April 5. This is the weekend when we say goodbye to a long winter and get out and enjoy everything anew.

Visit local merchants for free seed packets and to sign up to win one of two Bishop Hill Baskets.  These baskets are located at the Welcome Center.

The Bishop Hill Heritage Association is sponsoring several free baseball related events to celebrate MLB’s Opening Weekend.    All-American Girls Pro Baseball League items will be on display all day at the Steeple Building.  1:30 p.m. at the Dairy Building, author Barbara Gregorich will present When Women Played Baseball.  At 3:30 p.m., there will be a public showing of A League of Their Own in the Steeple Building.  Popcorn will be served at the movie.

For your gardening needs, the Bishop Hill Arts Council is sponsoring Ask the Gardening Experts.  From 10 to 11 a.m. at the Welcome Center, several local gardeners will be available to answer your questions and have items available to purchase.

There will also be a special Swedish artist exhibition in VagnHall Galleri, featuring George Olson’s watercolors and Barbara Sundberg Gonzales’ artwork.  Mr. Olson’s work focuses on the grasses and wildflowers of the North American prairie.  The artwork created by Mrs. Gonzales, a native of Bishop Hill now residing in Atlanta, is inspired by objects and scenes in nature.

Sweet Annie Primitives will be having an open house from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.  They will also be giving tours of their home, the 1855 Colony Apartment Building.

Bring the whole family and help celebrate Swedish culture and heritage in Bishop Hill, Illinois.  Visit for further information or call 309 927-3899.

*This program is sponsored, in part, by a grant from the Illinois Arts Council and the Illinois Humanities Council.