The Apple River Fort is now open!
Visitors will be required to wear a mask and to social distance (6 feet) while inside the Interpretive Center, and are strongly recommended to do so elsewhere on site.
Click HERE for more information.
We will not be scheduling group tours at this time.
65th Annual U.S. Grant Pilgrimage
Boy Scout Camping

Reservations are now open for tent camping at the Apple River Fort on the nights of Friday, September 25th & Saturday, September 26th! 

Camping is open to Boy Scout troops and space is limited. To download the camping informational packet and registration forms, click HERE. Please fill out all forms completely and return by Friday, September 18th

Send completed forms to the Apple River Fort

by mail:                                                                    by email:

                                             Apple River Fort SHS                             

                                  311 East Myrtle Street, PO Box 206
                                               Elizabeth, IL 61028

Reservations & cancellations eligible for refunds are due by Friday, September 18th. Cancellations after deadline are eligible for a partial refund only. No refunds after check-in. Please keep a copy of all forms for your records!

Note: The site is currently on winter hours (open Fridays and Saturdays only) so there may be a delay in response from staff. Don't worry, we will get back to you!

Camping FAQ

How much does it cost? Are there any additional fees?

Camping is $10 per person. This covers the entire weekend. Should your troop incur any damages to the site, a $50 fee will be charged towards repairs.

What is your cancellation / refund policy?

Cancellations eligible for a full refund are due by Friday, September 18th. Late cancellations, early departures, or no-shows are eligible for a partial refund. The Apple River Fort will retain 10% to help cover portapotties, trash removal, etc.

What kind of camping is allowed?

Only tent camping is allowed, no large campers or RVs.

What time is check-in and check-out?

Check-in is no sooner than 1pm on Friday, September 25th. Checkout is no later than 1pm on Sunday, September 27th.

Are camp fires / stoves / etc. allowed?

Above-ground stoves and fire grates are allowed. Anyone starting a fire is responsible for providing all materials for building, controlling, and extinguishing the fire.

Where is parking available?

Parking is available at the Interpretive Center parking lot (paved, 1/4 mile from campsite), the gravel lot behind the site's maintenance building, and on the grass alongside your campsite. Blocking any roads is prohibited and vehicles may be towed.

What amenities are available?

Portapotties are provided in a relatively central location. Potable water is available by hose near the Fort's palisade gate. No showers are available. No electricity is available.

Where is check-in?

Please check in with a member of Fort staff at either the Interpretive Center (at the intersection of Route 20 and East Myrtle Street) or at the gate of the Old Fort Road, where it intersects with Illinois Street. The troop leader or another adult (whoever arrives first) will check-in for the entire troop, which may include filling in any missing forms, making final payments towards camping fees, etc. At check-in, you will also get free trash bags for your use, directions and a map to your campsite, and any additional camping or event information.

Where can we get food in Elizabeth, IL?

There are several food options in Elizabeth, which includes: Cajun Jack's, Jug's Main Street Tap, E Town Coffee Company, Small Town Saloon/Dooley's, and the Three Sisters Sweet Shop. Please check their websites for menus and hours of operation. The Welcome Inn has closed. Groceries may be purchased at the Dollar General at the edge of town.