Economic development and supporting local are two very popular phrases used during the recent pandemic. It’s important to note that while visiting a destination it’s always nice to experience one-of-a-kind goods that are specific to a certain area; items that you can’t find just anywhere are what make the journey special.
Downstate Illinois is home to dozens of locally made products that are made with decades of expertise and knowledge. For example, Sunflower Broom Shop in Crossville uses 19th century machines without electricity to craft homemade brooms!
Kaleidoscope Craft Brew Coffee out of Belleville uses specific roasting methods to deliver the best tasting cup (or can) of joe around.
For fans of hand-dipped deliciousness, The Chocolate Affair in Highland makes tons of small batch goodies that are always dipped by hand, never by a machine.
When it comes to salad dressing, there is a very loyal following for Mullens, which is made in Palestine. Mullens is famous for its imitation French Dressing, which has been a fan-favorite since 1927!
Bow hunting and archery enthusiasts should look into Twisted Ditch Bows out of Hamilton County. These bows are all made by hand in three different styles and can be made by exotic or domestic woods of your choice!
For in-depth feature stories on several of our local artisans, head to the Downstate Illinois YouTube page and look for the Made in Downstate Illinois playlist on our channel. We are always looking to feature the next great maker in our region of the state, so stay tuned to YouTube and our social media for new stories each month!