Heritage Canyon is a 12-acre wooded structure nature walk dotted with buildings that take the visitor back to the 1800's.
- Mid-1800's - 1954: It was a limestone quarry where rock was crushed for field fertilizer, road beds, wing dams and levees. Trucks, trains and river barges hauled it away.
- 1954 - 1967: The quarry was abandoned in 1954 because dynamiting was damaging both sides of the river. The area became an eyesore to the community with its junk and dilapidated shacks.
- 1967 - 1999: In 1967, Harold and Thelma Wierenga bought the quarry. They converted the machine shop into a usable workshop and then built their home on the site of the old rock crusher. They changed the quarry, keeping two goals in mind: preserve Midwestern history, emphasizing detail and authenticity; and disturb nature as little as possible as each building is added.
- 1999 - Present: After the passing of Harold Wierenga in January 1999, his daughter and son-in-law maintained the Canyon for several years. However, the volunteer task of maintaining the Canyon was simply too much for the couple. In October 2005, the City of Fulton was given ownership of Heritage Canyon. In October 2007, Thelma Wierenga passed away. A memorial for Harold and Thelma is on display near the entrance into the Canyon.
Self-guided walking tours marked by numbered yellow arrows on brick paths will guide you through a pleasant experience.
Donations only, except on specials days when a $2.00 admission for adults and children over 14 is requested. Under 14, $1.00 per child. All donations are used for improvement of this park.
The church in the Canyon is available for small weddings. The church seats up to 25 people. Cost to rent the church is $185 (includes a $50 refundable deposit). Please call the caretaker for details and availability - 815-589-4600.
Special Events at Heritage Canyon:
Dutch Days May 3-5, 2013 10am - 4pm
Fall Festival October 5 & 6, 2013 10am - 4pm
Beggar's Night October 19, 2013 4pm-8pm
Christmas Walk December 7, 2013 10am to 4pm with an illuminated walk from 6pm to 8pm
At these events, the Early American Crafters, the Civil War reenactors, and other historical groups take us back in time as they recreate history in the mid-1800's. During special events there is a charge of $2/adult and $1/child. For more details about the events at Heritage Canyon, please visit the "Events" page.
Click on any picture below for a slideshow.
HERITAGE CANYON BUILDING SPONSORS:
- School House - Brinkman Building Center
- Dr.'s Office - Frances Rus & Family
- Iron Works - Arlyn & Claire Rus
- Log Cabin Settlement - Kummerer Family
- Blacksmith Shop - Barak's Truck Repair
- Canyon Church - Jon & Vickie Lockhart