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Lake County Forest Preserves | Preservation, Restoration, Education and Recreation


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Lives of the Voyageurs

LivesoftheVoyageurs_FurTradeSecretsGrades 4–12, Illinois Learning Standards 4A, 13B, 16C,E, 17C, 21A
Illinois Science Standards »

Go back to early Lake County as 18th-century French voyageurs lead activities on land and water. Discover why voyageurs traveled to Illinois in the 1740s and learn their effect on natural and cultural development. Weather permitting, paddle our 34-foot canoe across the lake and back in time.

Forest Preserve education staff realize the excitement and anticipation students and teachers feel when joining us for a floating classroom program, but there are circumstances when it is unsafe to include the canoe portion of the program. In the event that canoe use is not possible, staff is prepared with additional activities to present a complete education program.

Waiver and Release forms are required for all students attending this program. Download the waiver »


Floating classroom programs are primarily held at Independence Grove in Libertyville, but are also offered on Sterling Lake at Van Patten Woods in Wadsworth on May 8, 9, 11 and 12. This program is typically offered September–early October, and late April–May.


One group, $140 ($200 nonresident) 1.5 hours
Two groups (must be same day), $150 ($210 nonresident) 1.5 hours
Three groups (must be same day), $205 ($290 nonresident) 1.5 hours
Four groups (must be same day), $220 ($310 nonresident) 1.5 hours


Reservations are taken by phone at 847-968-3321. Make reservations now—plan early to help ensure you get a schedule that meets your needs. Learn more »

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