Have a couples weekend in Henry County
What kind of couples weekend is best for you and your partner? It depends! Are you looking for a relaxing, romantic interlude, or an activity-filled kind of weekend? Or something entirely different? We’ve put together some ideas.
The romantic interlude
If a quiet, relaxing and romantic weekend sounds good, a visit to the Lavender Crest Winery should be your first stop. Order a glass and enjoy a stroll through the gardens, or partake of the wine tour. Ritt’s Reserve is named after one of the winery’s owners. It’s a full-bodied red aged in a special blend of oak. If white wine is your favorite, have a glass of semi-sweet Colona White. There is also a selection of other wines, including blush, dessert and fruit wines. Schedule your visit for the monthly Wine Down, with unlimited prime rib, local music, and dancing.
If you’re more into beer than wine, you can still drink local! Have some fun at the Geneseo Brewing Company, enjoying craft beer and maybe some local music. If you want something traditional, consider Splunge, a hoppy British pub ale. If you’re feeling playful, order a Squirrels Nuts, a peanut butter porter and chocolate, or even Nice Melons, a light watermelon wheat.
Every romantic evening calls for a romantic dinner! Have a house-cut steak at The Cellar. Gaze at your partner across the candle-lit table, or peer into the glassed-in kitchen and watch as your meal is prepared. Their luscious chocolate layer cake is the perfect ending to a perfect meal.
Where will you stay during this romantic weekend? A charming bed and breakfast, of course. Aunt Daisy’s Bed & Breakfast welcomes you to an 1890 Victorian home, while the Twinflower Inn is located in the original 1855 Bishop Hill Colony Hospital. Might you want to get a good night’s rest before waking up and choosing some new furniture together? Good’s Furniture has rooms available right on site!
The nature weekend
If you and your partner love to reconnect in nature, there’s plenty of opportunities here. With two state parks to choose from, Henry County offers great outdoor recreation space. Bring your bikes and a tent!
The Hennepin Canal Parkway State Park, a 104-acre linear park built along a canal no longer used for shipping, has biking, boating, fishing, camping, geocaching and more! Bird-watchers love it, as do horseback riders, and, in winter, snowmobiling and cross-country ski enthusiasts.
The Johnson-Sauk Trail State Park got its name from a trail that Sauk Indians used in their treks between Lake Michigan and the place where the Mississippi and Rock rivers join. It’s known for its excellent fishing, rolling prairies, and forests. You can hike, hunt, picnic, boat, fish and more. You can even leave the trail and have a meal with a view at the Red Earth Café at Johnson-Sauk Trail State Park.
There are plenty of hotel and bed and breakfast options in Henry County, but why not go all-out if you love nature and camp here? We have lots of campgrounds to choose from, with plenty of options for either tent or RV camping.
The discovery weekend
Discover the heritage and history of Henry County with our variety of museums and arts venues. We are known for the Bishop Hill State Historic Site in Bishop Hill, where you will learn about the history of the utopian religious community founded here in 1846. Many historically significant buildings remain for you to tour. Better yet, time your visit for one of the many special festivals and events.
In the fall, lots of agricultural heritage events are scheduled! See demonstrations of the most cutting-edge farming techniques (of the 1800s). And May through October, take a tour of Ryan’s Round Barn, which features a collection of ag antiques.
When it’s time to turn in, the Bishop Hill Gallery Inn is right in the heart of Bishop Hill’s restaurant, shops, and museums area.
The essential part of every weekend trip
No weekend out of town is complete without trying some new restaurants and doing some unique shopping. Getting a taste of Henry County means trying a lot of traditional or Swedish favorites. Make sure you order the Swedish meatballs at the Bishop Hill Bakery and Eatery. Or, have some freshly made ice cream at Paxton’s Corner Coop — you’ll know you’re there when you see the giant roosters. Bakeries abound, so your sweet tooth won’t be disappointed.