200th birthday of Illinois

The Governor's Office of the Illinois Bicentennial announced today that Kaskaskia Island has been selected as the site to begin the 100 Day Countdown to the Illinois Bicentennial Celebration.

"We are very excited that the Governor's Office has selected our historic region to begin the 100 Day Countdown to the Bicentennial Celebration," Randolph County Commissioner Dr. Marc Kiehna. "Since Randolph County is 'Where Illinois Began,' it is appropriate for festivities to start on Kaskaskia Island-the site of the first state capital of Illinois."

Bicentennial Commission Co-Chair and Southern Illinois University System President Randy Dunn said: "As a resident of Randolph County for over 10 years, I'm proud that one of the state's very first bicentennial events will take place at Kaskaskia, our first capital. the area is so closely intertwined with the history of Illinois, and it will be exciting to be part of this celebration."

Illinois Bicentennial is a celebration of Illinois 200th Birthday; celebrating all that is great in Illinois: our history, our people, and our communities.

To commemorate the state's 200th birthday, a yearlong celebration will take place between December 3, 2017 through December 3, 2018.

There are three pillars of Illinois Bicentennial that the Bicentennial Commission would like you to know about:

1. Celebrate: We will fly the Illinois Bicentennial flag throughout the state

2. Inspire: We will inspire Illinoisans to be #IllinoisProud

3. Invest in the next 200 years: We will leave a lasting legacy

In January, 2017, Illinois Governor Bruce Rauner kicked off planning for the state's 200th birthday by unveiling the bicentennial logo.

The logo features 21 gold stars surrounding a blue outline of the state. In the middle is a gold-colored "200" in a white "sunburst" with rays emanating in all directions. Stuart Layne is executive director of the governor's Bicentennial Office. He says the sunburst "portrays the impact Illinois has made on the country and the world."

The design was created and donated by Ben Olson of the Schaumburg-based public relations agency 3 Monkeys and an Aardvark Studios.