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Local

Storms force some recreation areas closed

In the wake of several storm systems that have trekked through the region this week, the Illinois Department of Natural Resources has closed a few recreation areas.

Crews are working hard to clean up fallen trees and restore power, so as to get parks, campgrounds and trails open for this weekend, the IDNR said in a news release.

As of early this afternoon, though:

• Prophetstown State Park is closed because of flooding.

• White Pines State Park in Mount Morris still has no power. There is a generator on site, however, and the park is open.

• At Franklin Creek State Natural Area in Franklin Grove, equestrian trails are closed but hiking trails should be open.

• At Starved Rock State Park in Utica, trails remain closed for health and safety reasons while trees and debris are being removed. The lower parking lot and visitors center is closed because of flooding.

• The Kankakee River was reopened to recreational boating this morning, the release said.

• At the moment, no closures or restrictions have been imposed on the Rock River in Lee, Ogle or Whiteside counties.

Holiday revelers should take note: In addition to the usual increase in State Police and other law enforcement road patrols, the Illinois Conservation Police will be out in full force this weekend, concentrating on waterways and state parks.

Officers will be on the lookout for motorists and boaters operating under the influence of drugs and alcohol.

Go to www.dnr.illinois.gov/closures for current information on all IDNR sites.

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